Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Oklahoma City Thunder• Western Conference #2 seed | Season record: 59-23BACKDROP: As
#1
导出博客文章Oklahoma City Thunder• Western Conference #2 seed | Season record: 59-23BACKDROP: As my buddy Jezmund refers to him, Kevin Durant is my business card. Terrell Davis Womens Jersey . He is the face of the Thunder and has been since they made the move from Seattle six seasons ago. When I first glimpsed Kevin Durant play for the Texas Longhorns, I, and others blessed with the gift of sight, knew he was a superstar. He was to become my new Dominique Wilkins, AKA The Guy I Pinned My Hopes On. While on my stag in Las Vegas, I met Kevin in a library (picture attached). At the same literary function, Lebron James, just a few days removed from The Decision, had dined at the table next to mine, and was now watching an underpaid busboy zipline above the, oh, lets say microfiche, in a freshly minted Miami #6 jersey, while Durant roamed the room without entourage, looking like the worlds tallest Abercrombie salesman. I felt comfortable in my choice of next generation icons.CURRENT TEAM: Durant, the newly crowned MVP of the league, is unquestionably the face of the franchise according to everyone not named Russell Westbrook. Born without a brake pedal or a conscience, Russell likes to shoot the rock. These two alpha dogs have had difficulty meshing when it counts most, suffering five game dispatches the past three seasons, including 2012s Finals loss to Miami. Unlike the ongoing question which arises every postseason— "Why isnt the ball in KDs hands?"—now the team has a more desperate problem. Third banana, Serge Ibaka, a superstar in his own right as a two time 1st Team All Defender is out for the remainder of the playoffs. Expect gritty play from Steven Adams and Nick Collison, but it will be hard sledding against Tim Duncan to overcome losing the best shot blocker in the game.WHY ROOT FOR THEM: Beyond the sky-high likeability factor of Durantula, you may not want to root against a team that seems to have this years lucky streak on its side. Despite Ibakas injury, a ton has gone right for OKC in surprising ways this postseason, and perhaps after years of being labeled with the "next great team" status, the lords of basketball have decided for the breaks to go to tornado country. The Thunder were handed a gift when Zach Randolph was suspended for the final game of the Memphis series (a terrible decision by the league—if this was 1990, he may not have even been called for a foul). Then there was the bizarrely botched officiating at the end of Game 5 versus the Clippers, which effectively handed the game to OKC, and shifted the tide in the series. Do you really want to bet against the team with the best sixth man since James Harden? (That sixth man being the officiating crew.)Indiana Pacers• Eastern Conference #1 seed | Season record: 56-26BACKDROP: The state of Indiana is synonymous with basketball, even if the pro team has never won a title. Gene Hackman and his Hoosiers. Bobby Knight and his temper. Larry Bird and his hair. But the Pacers havent had a compelling national brand since Reggie Miller exchanged pleasantries with a courtside Spike Lee. Last year, for the first time without Reggie on the roster, the Pacers emerged under Paul George as a genuine force, making the Eastern Conference Finals, where they would lose to Miami in a slug-it-out seven game affair. They knew they were young and they were close. By mid-January of this year, they were the best team on the planet. Then something happened...CURRENT TEAM: The Trade. Before Larry Legend swapped the once face of the franchise, Danny Granger, for the overrated Evan Turner, the Pacers had the leagues best record at 42-13. After the trade, 14-13. They acquired Turner because bench play was the teams undoing in 2013 and making moves to strengthen it were necessary and advised. But whether it was the fault of Turner or other personalities in the locker room, the team unraveled (Turner and fellow Pacer, and known irritant, Lance "Born Ready" Stephenson, engaged in a fist fight last month, marking a nadir in the teams descent). Defence, the hallmark of the team, suddenly faltered. The offence stalled. Only recently has David West emerged as the emotional leader, and the team has clawed its way against lesser Eastern Conference opponents to the third round. Cue the rematch.(Sidenote: Top picks Lebron James, Tim Duncan, and near top picks Durant, Westbrook, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, etc., havent been the signature of these Pacers. Indiana hasnt selected above the #10 spot since George McCloud in 1989. Evan Turner, selected second overall by the 76ers, was the teams first foray into the top of the draft in many years. Paul George was taken at 10, Hibbert at 17. West, 18. Stephenson, 40. Scola, 56. I havent worked out this theory entirely, but I think Turners draft slot impacted the Pacers internal harmony.)WHY ROOT FOR THEM: Because you want to join me in rooting for the current member of "Team 29". You may never tack a picture of David West up on your wall, but you can still look yourself in the mirror with pride after rooting for him. The same cannot be said for Dwyane Wade.Miami Heat• Eastern Conference #2 seed | Season record: 54-28BACKDROP: Sadly, it is possible that one day we will argue over whether The King, blessed be He, correctly predicted winning seven or eight titles. Ugh. The Heat. Two-time defending champs. Three-time finalists. All time cocky bastards. The road team, but still heavy favourites to win the series. Further proof that the city of Miami is the Cosmo Kramer of the sports world—falling ass backwards into success. The fans ignore their losing teams, barely support their winning teams, and they still win championships (even the Florida Panthers have played for a Stanley Cup more recently than the Maple Leafs).CURRENT TEAM: Lebron James and fourteen other people paid to play (and often witness) basketball near Lebron James. As the lone quasi-big market team left among the final four, Im certain Adam Silver and the NBA brass (read: broadcasters) want to see the Heat in the Finals (read into that however you like, scholars of NBA officiating). This Heat team isnt as deep as seasons past, but in the final year of guaranteed contracts for the infamous Big 3, they still have plenty of firepower, as their solitary playoff loss attests.WHY ROOT FOR THEM: When you watch Die Hard, you root for Hans Gruber to get back his detonators. If an elderly man slips into a silt-soaked puddle, you chuckle. While others cheer for the upstart Rocky Balboa, you find yourself more of an Apollo Creed booster. You are reading this on a Samsung Galaxy. You thought Bambis mother had it coming. Welcome to your Miami Heat years.Gallays Poll #10Q: Who will you be rooting for?(A) San Antonio. Because a fifth championship would cement them for all time.(B) Oklahoma City. Because Kevin Durant was the MVP for a reason.© Indiana. Because Larry Legend is due for a return to the winners podium.(D) Miami. Because I need something to do when Im not kicking kittens. Courtland Sutton Jersey . In mens doubles, Vancouvers Vasek Pospisil and American Jack Sock reached the quarter-finals with a 7-6 (3), 7-6 (3), 6-4 win over Croatian Mate Pavic and Andre Sa of Brazil. Denver Broncos Jerseys .The Canadian teenage golf sensation announced Thursday shell join the LPGA Tour in 2015 instead of attending the University of Florida. http://www.broncosrookiestore.com/Bronco...an-Jersey/ . The alleged sexual assault is believed to have happened over the weekend of Feb. 1, when the hockey team was in Thunder Bay for two games against Lakehead University. The criminal investigation branch of the Thunder Bay Police Service is leading the investigation with help from Ottawa police.TORONTO -- Canadas Milos Raonic strolled into the post-match interview room at Rexall Centre and immediately looked over at the television monitor beside his seat. He watched the screen intently as Roger Federer and Marin Cilic squared off on the stadium court before sitting down to discuss his 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 victory over Julien Benneteau at the Rogers Cup. Raonic will next meet Feliciano Lopez in the quarter-finals but the possibility of another semifinal showdown with Federer -- just a month after they met in the final four at Wimbledon -- has Canadian tennis fans drooling. So, is a potential rematch with the Swiss star in the back of his mind? "No, I just enjoy to watch tennis," Raonic said with a grin. Federer ended Raonics run at the All England Club before losing to Novak Djokovic in the final. It was a career-best performance at the Grand Slam event for the 23-year-old Canadian, but his performance against Federer left him disappointed and frustrated. Raonic responded last week by winning in Washington and he has maintained the momentum this week, although he has been tested in both of his matches. The No. 6 seed from Thornhill, Ont., barely got by American Jack Sock in his opener before getting another stiff challenge from Benneteau on Thursday night. The hard-serving Raonic controlled the early pace with his powerful ground strokes but the Frenchman picked up two breaks in the second set to pull even. Raonic broke Benneteau at love to open the third set and was never threatened after that. "Today I was (in) much more (of) a comfort zone -- created my opportunities," Raonic said. It was a day of upsets at the US$3.78-million Masters 1000 series tournament as three of the top four seeds were eliminated. South Africas Kevin Anderson got things started in the morning by knocking off No. 3 Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland 7-6 (8), 7-5 and No. 13 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France followed with a 6-2, 6-2 win over top-seeded Novak Djokovic of Serbia. In the evening, Lopez pulled out a 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over fourth-seeded Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic. The second-seeded Federer held off Cilic, the No. 15 seed from Croatia, 7-6 (5), 6-7 (3), 6-4. With a near-capacity crowd cheering him on, Raonic had little trouble in the opening set. He was pushed to deuce at one point but a volley winner and 221-km/h service winner gave him the hold and a 4-3 lead. In the following game, Raonic landed a scorching forehand in the corner to set up a break point and took the game when Benneteau made an unforced error. He closed out the set when the ball struck the net tape and softly landed on Benneteaus side. Benneteau appeared to get more of a read on Raonics serve in the second set but he couldnt match up in the third. The Frenchman fought off threee match points in the penultimate game before Raonic closed things out in one hour 47 minutes. Noah Fant Womens Jersey. Earlier, Djokovic was unable to settle into his usual rhythm and it proved costly against Tsonga, who needed only 63 minutes to complete the straight-sets victory. "Just nothing was going," Djokovic said. "No baseline, no serve, no return. So (it was) just generally (a) very bad day, very poor performance. (I) couldnt do much." Tsonga had eight aces and Djokovic continually struggled to keep his service returns in bounds. Tsonga closed out the victory when Djokovic returned a serve wide. A visibly elated Tsonga did some shadow boxing and jumped up and down before waving to the receptive crowd. "Its not every day you get the rewards of what youre doing every day during the year," he said. "You leave your family, practise every day hard, suffer a lot on the court. And when you win a match like this, you just feel good." Djokovic barely got by Gael Monfils of France a day earlier, needing a third-set tiebreaker to avoid a loss in his tournament opener. He came into Thursdays match with 11 straight wins over Tsonga, but was nowhere near adding a 12th. The three-time Rogers Cup champ said he didnt feel comfortable in either match on the fast hardcourt. "I wasnt hitting the ball clean and a lot of unforced errors," Djokovic said. "Its maybe (a) lack of matches on this surface and well, it takes time. Lets just say its going to be better, Im sure." Tsonga will play No. 8 Andy Murray of Britain in the quarter-finals. Murray advanced when Richard Gasquet of France withdrew due to an abdominal strain. Djokovic planned to maximize his time on the practice court over the next few days as he gets ready for next weeks tournament in Cincinnati ahead of the U.S. Open at the end of the month. "Obviously Im disappointed that I lost this early in the tournament, but on the other hand I had a tough draw yesterday and today again. Tsonga played (at) a very high level, great quality shots. "All I can say is well done and I have to move on." Federer will next play fifth-seeded David Ferrer of Spain, who defeated Ivan Dodig of Croatia 1-6, 6-3, 6-3. Anderson will face seventh-seeded Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria, who beat No. 17 Tommy Robredo 7-5, 5-7, 6-4. Notes: Benneteau received a warning midway through the second set for a time violation between points. He had some critical words for chair umpire Damian Steiner at the next changeover. After the match, Benneteau explained that he would have appreciated a soft warning beforehand. ... Raonic lost to Spains Rafael Nadal in the final of last years tournament in Montreal. Nadal is not able to defend his title due to a wrist injury. Cheap Jerseys China NFL Jerseys Cheap NBA Jerseys Wholesale NHL Jerseys Wholesale MLB Jerseys Cheap Soccer Jerseys China Wholesale NCAA Jerseys Wholesale Football Jerseys Wholesale Basketball Jerseys Wholesale Baseball Jerseys ' ' '
Reply


Forum Jump:


Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)