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Clippers v. Heat

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Wow. I haven't watched a whole NBA quarter in a loooong time.

1. I was really shocked at the level of skill. Every guy on the court had good hands, good passing, and so on. The speed of the game was really amazing, and every guy has a 36" plus vertical and has good instinct. I'd guess that either of tonight's teams could slaughter any team from circa 1985, when I started watching.

2. The guy named Jordan on the Clippers is a stud in the making. This guy will be an All-Star type player at some point, he just needs some confidence. Just looked awesome out there.

3. C. Butler. Damn. Man still plays the game on a different level. A real stat stuffer.

4. The Heat - the easiest team to hate that I have ever seen, including the Yankees and 80s Celtics. They are truly a group of brats. D Wade took a cheap shot at a guy tonight. Le Douche and Wade complain and whine and make faces about every call. Wade got the worst phantom whistle I have ever seen. Really, unlikable team in many ways.
 
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I watched it, the Heat are the biggest brats I've ever seen in professional sports. When things are going good they showboat and preen, when things aren't going good they pout and bitch and moan about every single call. Lebron was totally outplayed by Caron in the fourth quarter, I would lay money on the Heat not winning the championship. Lebron becomes a completely different player in the fourth quarter of games, he looks like a scared little boy. Usually he passes the ball like a hot potato and never even looks at the rim. Tonight he actually drove several times but he shortarmed every layup and missed a bunch of ft's. The Clips have the pieces to be a really good team as they gel together and DeAndre Jordan emerges.
 
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Wow. I haven't watched a whole NBA quarter in a loooong time.

1. I was really shocked at the level of skill. Every guy on the court had good hands, good passing, and so on. The speed of the game was really amazing, and every guy has a 36" plus vertical and has good instinct. I'd guess that either of tonight's teams could slaughter any team from circa 1985, when I started watching.

2. The guy named Jordan on the Clippers is a stud in the making. This guy will be an All-Star type player at some point, he just needs some confidence. Just looked awesome out there.

3. C. Butler. Damn. Man still plays the game on a different level. A real stat stuffer.

4. The Heat - the easiest team to hate that I have ever seen, including the Yankees and 80s Celtics. They are truly a group of brats. D Wade took a cheap shot at a guy tonight. Le Douche and Wade complain and whine and make faces about every call. Wade got the worst phantom whistle I have ever seen. Really, unlikable team in many ways.

You can join me in slapping people who claim the NBA sucks. :)

Love when UConn guys are on good teams - I don't have a team to follow in the NBA, I just root for former Huskies.
 
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I'm always amused at how people have latched onto this hate for Miami. I guess it all comes from the LeBron thing because otherwise they are a hard working, defensive orientated team which is what people usually like. If they are healthy no one is going to beat them in a best of seven series this year so I imagine that there will be a lot of angry people.
 
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I think the hate comes from the aforementioned whining and complaining.

That was what turned me off to them last year during the playoffs.

I don't watch the NBA until the playoffs or if there is a game with a uconn alum on tv.

So, as a fairly passive NBA fan/watcher, I found it really hard to root for those guys last year, mainly because of James and Wade.
 
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You're going to have to hate every team then because they all complain when they get called for fouls and they all celebrate when they dunk or make a three. Obviously all would be an exaggeration, but I am guessing you see what I mean. I think when it comes to Miami I am just impressed that no one is ever in trouble off the court and that they have managed to convince these star players to really play tough, determined defense. That's rare, and refreshing to me.
 
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Isn't '85 a bad year to stick against these teams?

I mean, do you honestly believe that Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, James Worthy, Kareem AJ, Byron Scott, Kevin McHale, Robert Parish, Dennis Johnson, Bill Walton, Danny Ainge, Michael Cooper, Bob Macadoo, AC Green, wouldn't be starters for either of those teams?
 
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You're going to have to hate every team then because they all complain when they get called for fouls and they all celebrate when they dunk or make a three. Obviously all would be an exaggeration, but I am guessing you see what I mean. I think when it comes to Miami I am just impressed that no one is ever in trouble off the court and that they have managed to convince these star players to really play tough, determined defense. That's rare, and refreshing to me.

Very true- nba is filled with players who complain a lot.

I have no dislike of James or Wade that stretches beyond the court. I just think they take the whining too far. They are both amazing, but way too coddled and no bad play is ever their own fault.
 
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Isn't '85 a bad year to stick against these teams?

I mean, do you honestly believe that Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, James Worthy, Kareem AJ, Byron Scott, Kevin McHale, Robert Parish, Dennis Johnson, Bill Walton, Danny Ainge, Michael Cooper, Bob Macadoo, AC Green, wouldn't be starters for either of those teams?
Those two teams were head and shoulders better than all the other teams. But I'll stick to my guns - the level of athleticism today is just off the charts. I'm trying to picture Dennis Johnson guarding Chris Paul and I can't see him staying within 5 feet of the guy. Magic was big, and had quick hands, but nobody ever claimed he was quick to blow by you. It's an interesting question, to be sure.
 

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The athleticism and the defense.

Watch a game from 1985 or earlier and see how horrendous the defense is. You'd have games with scores like 130-120, all the time, and not just teams like the Nuggets. And that's not because everyone was an amazing offensive player.

It wasn't until the Bad Boys came around in the late 80s that defense became a focus. Then you had Pat Riley going from Showtime to the Knicks, who were the polar opposite.

I watched a 1978 Finals game on ESPN Classic a few years ago and I was absolutely shocked at how poor the defense was. Bill Walton was an extremely skilled offensive player but honestly, anybody could have carved up the Bullets' defense. Transition, half-court, you name it: no defense at all. I was laughing. I couldn't believe I was watching a Finals game.
 

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Are we playing with current NBA rules or 1985 rules?

The skill level in the NBA is undeniable, however, the rules are really skewed to make it easier to score as well that and though the worst NBA teams have great skill there is such a huge gap between the 4-6 good teams and the 4-6 bad teams, it makes a lot of games unwatchable.

Magic may not have been able to blow by you, but he was 6'9-6'10 and handled better than any 6'9-6'10 player not named Lebron, while being a better passer with an actual post game. Bird was slow but is basically a 6'10 version of Dirk, with a passing game. Both would be stars in any league and any era. It would be fun watching Kevin McHale make Bosh cry in the corner.
 
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Agreed, which makes it even funnier when the out of touch on here try to claim that no defense is played in the NBA.

The athleticism and the defense.

Watch a game from 1985 or earlier and see how horrendous the defense is. You'd have games with scores like 130-120, all the time, and not just teams like the Nuggets. And that's not because everyone was an amazing offensive player.

It wasn't until the Bad Boys came around in the late 80s that defense became a focus. Then you had Pat Riley going from Showtime to the Knicks, who were the polar opposite.

I watched a 1978 Finals game on ESPN Classic a few years ago and I was absolutely shocked at how poor the defense was. Bill Walton was an extremely skilled offensive player but honestly, anybody could have carved up the Bullets' defense. Transition, half-court, you name it: no defense at all. I was laughing. I couldn't believe I was watching a Finals game.
 
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No question defense is played in the NBA. I just don't think D.J. Augustine plays good defense and that should be emphasized more when deciding who is a better player.
 
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It drives me nuts when people who consider themselves basketball fans say the nba sucks. The nba is by far the best basketball in the world, if you don't like it you don't like basketball.
 
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The NBA is really reviving itself these past few years. I think LeBron's decision brought the league's entertainment value to a high the league hasn't seen in the last decade, and this saved/shortened season is helping to continue the momentum.

The league is also starting to shift towards Northeast relevance..and the next couple of years could be huge in that regard. The Celtics have gotten their fanbase back to arguably the best in the league, and I definitely see those fans staying at that level as long as they can hold onto their fan favorites a few more years, even if they're a middle of the pack playoff team. The Knicks are still on the rise, and I could see them peaking as a Finals-caliber team a year or two from now once they find one more backcourt piece. Then you have the Nets and their new arena, which helps heighten up a in-city rivalry. Even if they don't land Howard, their move and cap space will attract some marquee players next year for a playoff run. Finally, you have the Sixers which have quietly built a top 10 NBA team and appear to have the defense, youth and balance to win a playoff series or two every year for the next couple of years.

Keep Miami from the trophy a few more years, and the NBA will thrive even more. Its best teams are in the markets that matter (Chicago, LA, NYC, Boston) it will have the team to hate (Miami) that interests neutral fans every year and can throw enough exciting young teams at us to keep the small markets happy (OKC, Memphis, Denver, Indiana, to name a few).

Unfortunately some cities are stuck in basketball purgatory (Detroit, Cleveland, Toronto) but with the NBA Draft you have a much better shot of getting an exciting first-round fan favorite than you do in any other sport.
 

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The talent and the level of play in the NBA is just amazing. You almost have to skew the rules and the officiating towards the offenses because no one would score if you didn't - these guys are just such freaks of nature athletically that they can close off the ends of the court if you let them.

College basketball captures my attention more than the NBA does for whatever reason - I won't watch the NBA tonight, but I'm looking forward to Gonzaga-St. Mary's at 11.

But I'll watch a couple of NBA games a week, usually the Heat. I suspect the anti-Heat bent that most people are on is starting to make me a Heat fan.

Plus, LeBron Jamse is just so insanely talent.
 
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'no defense in the nba' is one of the worst myths ever, thankfully it seems the majority of people are coming around
 
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The talent and the level of play in the NBA is just amazing. You almost have to skew the rules and the officiating towards the offenses because no one would score if you didn't - these guys are just such freaks of nature athletically that they can close off the ends of the court if you let them.

College basketball captures my attention more than the NBA does for whatever reason - I won't watch the NBA tonight, but I'm looking forward to Gonzaga-St. Mary's at 11.

But I'll watch a couple of NBA games a week, usually the Heat. I suspect the anti-Heat bent that most people are on is starting to make me a Heat fan.

Plus, LeBron Jame is just so insanely talent.

The NBA is such high Size/Speed/Skill that the smoothness of the athletes and lack of proportional humans on the TV really makes it look like the players aren't expending the same type of effort. Mainly this is due to the fact that college athletes are so innefficient with their movements compared to NBA. Also, unless you are talking OKC/NYC/Golden State, the crowds at big time College BB are so much more emotional that it appeals to the average TV fan.

For pure sport, skill, game, there is no comparison however.
 
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I think part of the reason I like college basketball better than the NBA is because the players in the NBA are too good. I know that doesn't really make sense.... but maybe someone else will agree with me.
 
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'no defense in the nba' is one of the worst myths ever, thankfully it seems the majority of people are coming around

One of my friends who is a big NBA fan has said "sit courtside at an NBA game and tell me those players don't play hard on defense."

While I can't vouch for that personally, I think it's a good way of putting it. Crowds that aren't as raucous as college basketball, combined with players that can regularly make difficult shots both create an illusion that subpar defense is being played. If people put aside stereotypes and get closer to the action, they will realize how talented you have to be to defend in a league with so much offensive talent.
 
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agree that college crowds play a huge part in peoples biases against the NBA game
 
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The "no defense" myth came from the immediate post-Jordan years (i.e. the early 2000s), when no one - particularly the stars - played any semblance of defense. The NBA was extremely popular at the time, but the Iversons, Carters, McGradys, Starburys, etc. of the world turned a lot of people away from the game.

I also think a lot of big college fans are turned off by the NBA because guys don't play hard every minute of every game - they do for big games (like Heat-Clippers last night) and second halves, but not every minute of every game. But when you consider they play 48-minute games 3-4 times a week for 8-10 months, it's really not realistic to expect them to give it their all game in and game out like guys do in college.

With that said, the past 5-6 years in the NBA (basically ever since LeBron became a superstar) have been incredible...especially the playoffs. Anyone who still holds onto the myth that no defense is played probably hasn't been a regular watcher since like 2002.
 
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I find the college game to be more interesting from a strategic standpoint. I enjoy the fact that Uconn has to deal with the zone defense of Syracuse one game, the full court press of Louisville the next game, the Princeton offense of Georgetown the next game, etc.

In the NBA you have absurdly talented offensive players and only 24 seconds to get a shot off. As a result, there isn't enough time to run too elaborate of an offense and at some point you just have to give the ball to your best player and clear out. I'm not saying I don't enjoy watching the Thunder run isolation plays for Kevin Durant. It's just not as interesting to me as watching Uconn figure out how to get Jeremy Lamb open against Syracuse's zone, for example.
 
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I love college basketball and the NBA, but it's almost like watching two different sports at times. I think the talent gap between college and the pros is as wide as it's ever been, but I still find myself getting more excited for college games, even when UConn isn't playing. Not that they don't play hard in the pros, but I've always felt they play harder in college, if for no other reason than the game being shorter. It also helps that millions of dollars are at stake for some college kids, while for others, it is the chance of a lifetime to compete with future pros.

The other reason I like college basketball more is because of the shorter season. In college you play two games a week, plus you're younger, and probably more energetic. The NBA has 82 games in a normal season, and with eight teams making the playoffs, the regular season is more or less meaningless. Even when two tournament locks get together, it just feels like there is more on the line.

Lastly, the atmosphere and passionate fan bases is what makes me appreciate college basketball more. When you commit to a school, most of the time you are a member of that school for life, unlike in the NBA, where players can sign with 5-6 teams per career, almost making it seem like you're cheering for laundry at times. As a fan of a college team, you're closer to the players, and it's easier to say "These are my guys, those are your guys, let's go at it". It wouldn't be the same if Alex Oriakhi was traded for Darius Miller tomorrow. Some guys only attend college for one, maybe two years, but I still feel like you become more attached to a kid who represents your school than a pro just collecting another pay check.

Again, not trying to suggest one is better than the other, just pointing out my preference. I really think the NBA would be better served going to a six team playoff, giving the top two teams in each conference a bye, then playinig a 3 out 5 wild card round. JMO.
 
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I think part of the reason I like college basketball better than the NBA is because the players in the NBA are too good. I know that doesn't really make sense.... but maybe someone else will agree with me.

I know what you mean. It's almost unfair having to guard guys like Dirk and LeBron. There is just no humanly way anybody can stop them when they get going.
 
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