Tag: Miami Heat

LeBron James Receives 4th MVP Award

Thad Matta already talking about recruiting 9-year-old LeBron James Jr. to Ohio State


LeBron James merely associating with someone can do wonders for that person’s career.

See Shabazz Napier in Miami and James Jones in Cleveland.

But what about sharing genes with LeBron?

Eric Seger of theozone.net:

I don’t think Matta will get a secondary violation for that, because LeBron Jr. has yet to enter ninth grade and become a “prospective student-athlete.” But Geno Auriemma got a secondary violation for calling to congratulate eighth-grader Mo’ne Davis, so who knows? I’m sure Ohio State’s 13-person compliance staff is on the case. For what it’s worth – and this might actually matter when determining Matta’s meaningless punishment – LeBron Jr. (as LeBron Sr. has seen) is pretty good:

If LeBron Jr. wants to pursue basketball, best of luck to him. Hopefully, by the time he graduates high school, he’ll enter an American basketball system with better options than playing for the cartel-determined compensation of a scholarship and no money or joining the low-paying D-League because the NBA has a restrictive age limit.

Cavaliers considering starting Tristan Thompson at center

Tristan Thompson

Coming up with a starting lineup for the Cleveland Cavaliers should be easy. Four positions are already spoken for right off the bat. Kyrie Irving is the point guard. Dion Waiters is the shooting guard. LeBron James is the small forward. Kevin Love is the power forward. And logically, it would make sense that veteran Brazilian big man Anderson Varejao would start at center. However, new head coach David Blatt may have other ideas, according to Bob Finnan of the News-Herald:

The Cavaliers are at least toying with the idea of starting Tristan Thompson at center.
If they do, they must feel his athleticism will overshadow the size discrepancy he would face almost every night.
Thompson is listed as 6 feet 9, 228 pounds.
The league is shifting toward more mobile big men instead of the behemoths in the paint. One  reason is it’s difficult to find legitimate 7-footers.
Until the Wine and Gold Scrimmage on Oct. 1, it was thought 6-11 Anderson Varejao would be the starting center.

Playing a less conventional big man next to James is nothing new — the Miami Heat won two straight titles with Chris Bosh in that role. But Thompson is nowhere near the shooter, passer or defender Bosh is. The teams that will give the Cavs the most problems in the Eastern Conference all feature traditional bigs. Can Thompson guard Joakim Noah? Can he guard Nene or Marcin Gortat? What about Al Jefferson?

Varejao, when healthy, is a solid defender who can bang with anybody. He’s also a known quantity who isn’t playing out of position. That’s what the Cavs need in the frontcourt next to Love, a tremendous rebounder who isn’t a great defender. Once the rest of the team gets comfortable with each other, it might be worth experimenting with Thompson at center next to Love.

Neither option is perfect. The Cavs have plenty of scoring firepower at all five positions, but if there’s one hole in this roster, it’s a rim protector. James is an all-world defender, and so is Shawn Marion, but Love and Irving are known for their deficiencies on that end and just about everyone else on the roster is unproven. Swinging a trade for a Larry Sanders-type big man would give them everything they need, but that might not be feasible until at least the trade deadline.

Then again, this team has LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love, so there’s a pretty good chance they’ll outscore everybody every night and defense won’t matter.

67RIEFNS No. 7: Warriors’ starting lineup

Stephen Curry

The NBA is full of talent, personality and suspense. During the doldrums of the offseason, It’s easy to forget how wonderful the league can be. So, I’ve assembled 67 Reasons I’m Excited For Next Season (67RIEFNS). They’ll be presented in no particular order.

Bob Myers’ hard work paid off.

The Warriors general manager’s painstaking pursuit of Andre Iguodala included convincing Iguodala to sign while simultaneously clearing the necessary the cap space – and it worked.

The result? Iguodala turned the Warriors’ starting lineup into one of the NBA’s most effective and complete units.

Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Iguodala, David Lee and Andrew Bogut dominated last season.

Of the NBA’s 30 most-used lineups, none had a better net rating than the Warriors’ starters, who outscored opponents by 15.4 points per 100 possessions.

And they did it by dominating both ends. Their offensive rating (112.4) and defensive rating (97.0) would have both led the NBA.

Here’s how the league’s 30 most-used lineups stacked up offensively and defensively. (Click here for an interactive version where you can mouse over each logo to see players and exact offensive and defensive ratings.)


  • Bottom right: above average offensively, above average defensively
  • Top right: above average offensively, below average defensively
  • Bottom left: below average offensively, above average defensively
  • Top left: below average offensively, below average defensively

Peerless far into the bottom right, that’s the Warriors’ starters.

Within the 30 most-used lineups, only two were better offensively – one on the Clippers (Chris Paul, Darren Collison, Matt Barnes, Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan) and one on the Timberwolves (Ricky Rubio, Kevin Martin, Corey Brewer, Kevin Love and Nikola Pekovic). With Collison on the Kings and Love on the Cavaliers, neither lineup will be around this season.

Likewise, the only better defensive lineups – the Suns’ Eric Bledsoe, Goran Dragic, P.J. Tucker, Channing Frye and Miles Plumelee; the Bulls’ Kirk Hinrich, Jimmy Butler, Mike Dunleavy, Carlos Boozer and Joakim Noah; the Pacers’ George Hill, Lance Stephenson, Paul George, David West and Roy Hibbert; the Wizards’ John Wall, Bradley Beal, Trevor Ariza, Nene and Marcin Gortat; and Charlotte’s Kemba Walker, Gerald Henderson, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Josh McRoberts and Al Jefferson – have broken up with Frye in Orlando, Boozer in Los Angeles, Stephenson in Charlotte, Ariza in Houston and McRoberts in Miami.

Yet, the Warriors’ top lineup remains.

Between Curry, Thompson, Iguodala, Lee and Bogut, it’s difficult to find a skill left uncovered.

Curry and Thompson bomb away from beyond the arc. Lee scores inside. Curry and Iguodala keep the ball moving. Lee and Bogut clean the glass. Bogut protects the rim. Iguodala and Thompson defend perimeter.

The puzzle pieces fit seamlessly.

Steve Kerr, please don’t mess with this lineup. It’s basketball bliss.