San Antonio Spurs v Memphis Grizzlies - Game Four

Manu Ginobili would prefer to meet Pacers in the Finals


The Spurs have an extended layoff thanks to taking care of the Memphis Grizzlies with a four game sweep in the Western Conference Finals. As they practice and await the conclusion of the series between the Heat and the Pacers, questions naturally arise as to whether or not the team has a preference in who it would like to face in the championship round.

While most players are usually diplomatic or refuse to answer, Manu Ginobili was fine in coming out and saying that he’d rather see Indiana in the Finals than the defending champions from Miami — but not because he thinks one team would be a better matchup.

From Dan McCarney of the San Antonio Express-News:

“It’s not that we pull (for Indiana),” he said. “I think this time it’s different than before because the homecourt advantage. It is a big difference. It’s not definitive. It doesn’t mean that whoever has homecourt advantage is going to win. But we all prefer to have a Game 7 at home than on the road if we could get to that point. But besides that, different styles, I think we can match up with both.”

Championship teams usually have to win one or more games on the road, especially in the Finals where the format switches to 2-3-2 in terms of where the games are played.

But Ginobili is right when he says a Game 7 at home is something to be valued, so there’s no shame in his rooting a little bit for the Pacers to come back and win the series, considering it would mean home court advantage for the Spurs in the NBA Finals.

Derrick Rose being back for start of season in question

Fred Hoiberg, Derrick Rose
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The Bulls have said Derrick Rose is about a week away from returning after suffering a facial fracture this preseason.

The start of the NBA season is two weeks from today (Oct. 27).

So Rose will be ready to go when the Bulls start their season that first night against Cleveland, right? Don’t bet on it, says Vincent Goodwill of, quoting coach Fred Hoiberg.

The opening night projection for a Derrick Rose return is a bit murky at this point, as the Bulls are taking a cautious approach to his recovery with Fred Hoiberg essentially ruling him out for the rest of the preseason.

“Most likely (out for the preseason),” Hoiberg said….

In fact, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Rose sit out the first handful of games, as the Bulls start the season with a three-game in four-night stretch starting Oct. 27 against the Cleveland Cavaliers, which is in two weeks.

“That will be in consideration, sure,” Hoiberg said. “We gotta make sure, he really hasn’t done anything and that will be a good two or three weeks where he has total inactivity, so just to throw him back out there going 100 percent with his speed and everything, you just don’t want to take any risks, chances, where it could be a lingering issue.”

Just what TNT and the NBA hoped for with an opening night Bulls vs. Cavaliers showcase: Kirk Hinrich vs. Mo Williams. (Don’t forget Kyrie Irving will miss the start of the season recovering from his knee surgery.)

Of course, this is the smart play for the Bulls who need to be thinking about getting Rose fully healthy and focusing on what condition he will be come April 27, not Oct. 27.

And of course, a lot of Bulls fans who are down on Rose will slam him for this. Even though the injury was a freak accident and the team is right to be patient.

Rose could play opening night, if he gets back to practice next week and can get closer to basketball shape. But I wouldn’t bet on it.

Stephen Curry apologizes for Warriors’ health, playoff path, success

Stephen Curry, DeAndre Jordan, Spencer Hawes

Draymond Green wasn’t the only Warrior firing back at perceived critics today.

A sarcastic Stephen Curry joined the fun (and to his credit, did so much more appropriately than his teammate).


I just want to say, I apologize for us being healthy. I apologize for us playing who’s in front of us. I apologize for all the accolades we’ve received as a team and individually. I’m very, truly sorry. We’ll rectify that situation this year.

We try to have fun with it.

What the Warriors refuse to realize: Acknowledging the fortunate breaks they received en route to their championship is not the same as saying they didn’t deserve their championship. It’s not insulting them.

Of course, the Warriors aren’t obligated to fully understand the critiques. They’re incentivized to spin the comments into motivation.

Mission clearly accomplished.