Tag Archive: Greg Popovich


Jason “Big J” Allen Prediction:

Heat win Game 7

Game 7!!!  but I’m still exhausted from Game 6.  Big Play and I watched Game 6 (shout out to Jack Daniel and BP hospitality) and I’m sad to report that was the Spurs one chance to close the door on the Big 3 in Miami.  Que up “Eye of the Tiger” for me because the LeBron we saw in the 4th and OT, that was demanding the ball and yelling at teammates for not giving him the rock (very Kobesque).  This final game will dictate the legacy of a King or the downfall of a Prince.  I’m with the Heatles showing up and taking care of business, but it won’t be Lennon or McCartney (LBJ or Wade), its going to be Harrison and Star (Chalmers, Miller, Allen, and Birdman Birdman).  Let’s not forget in close out games with the Heat the role players play their roles and shoot the lights out.  I see the same thing tonight.  Forget dinner with the players Pop, forget the pity party in the press conference, forget the Ray Allen saved LBJ legacy (I don’t hear anyone dissing The Dream, Shaq, Kobe, Duncan and etc when Robert Horry and Derek Fisher hit clutch lucky bounce shots so stop with the Ray Allen crap, LBJ don’t ball out in the 4th there is no need for a late 3 to tie), and forget the NBA is fixed talk (Spurs win LBJ is a choke artist, Heat win NBA is fixed give me a break people).  In the words of Jay-Z “We are about to WITNESS a Dynasty like no other” (well except Mr. Russell’s). I’m taking the Heat as the repeat NBA champions, Got 1, Got 2…  Now you just have 6 more to go LeBron!

What do you think let me know @UnsportsmenBigJ

Raymond “Big Play” Miller prediction:

Spurs win Game 7

So it comes down to this… 1 game… 48 minutes…  championship on the line.  Who wants it bad enough?  I know D. Wade will show up after having a bad Game 6 and Tony Parker will do the same.  Bosh did his thing last game (but we still don’t respect him after his comments to the fans or rather ticket holders) and Ginobili didn’t.  LeBron has to and WILL be LeBron (brother please keep that headband on MERCY!!!! didn’t know if that was LBJ or Joel Anthony on the court and shoutout to Hawk Harrelson).  Greg Popovich normally makes great adjustments after losses as we’ve seen in this series and Erik Spoelstra putting birdman, birdman back in the series gave the team some energy, which was great for the home crowd early.  However, I believe this game will come down to x-factors who between Mike Miller and Gary Neal will be the difference in the game. My head tells me this is easy Mike Miller and Heat win going away right; but this series hasn’t been that way, GUT FEELING Neal is the difference and Timmy!!! and Pop win ring #5

Just my thoughts right or wrong tell me what you think @bprunsportsmenm

Maurice “Cool Reece” Thomas prediction:

Spurs win Game 7

Does LeBron James have a heart of a champion?  That  anwser  all depends on how LeBron handles the pressure in game 7.  I wrote an article stating that LeBron may not be the one (LeBron James more Mr. Anderson than NEO).  Its not about the headband or Ray Allen saving his legacy, its about how aggressive can LeBron be by attacking the basket.  If LeBron is passive or settling for jump shots then you can’t expect the rest of the team to carry him or the Heat to win.  The Spurs want it more than the Heat, is just the feeling I get.  After Game 6 the Spurs decided to have a dinner together to clear the air and to talk about what happen and what is expected for the team.  Now you know the Heat are not going to do that.  I’m not saying in order to win a championship your  team has to go out to dinner with each other, but it still builds team chemistry.  On that note Heat fans should be more worried about LeBron anxiety instead his headband. I’m taking the Spurs.

I’m just saying, but what say you @coolreece15

We are missing the old man of the group James “JD” Davis, but maybe I will update this with his take in an hour or so.  We all will be watching the game so feel free to tweet and harrass us.  Here’s to a Great Game 7! UnSportsMen Mic Crew

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By: Maurice “Cool Reece” Thomas

Follow me @CR_Unsportsmen

LeBron James reminds me of Neo in the Matrix Trilogy. From the beginning of his career everyone knew he was the ONE, except for him.  His early years he was Mr. Anderson, not Neo.  In the 2011 Finals Agent Smith finally got him and killed Mr. Anderson, but it was needed so LeBron could be reborn in the 2012 Finals as Neo and realized he was “The One”.  This year LeBron has been playing like he is “The One”, but just like the Matrix Trilogy Agent Smith returned, but Agent Smith is no NBA opponent, Agent Smith is LeBron’s LEGACY and GREATNESS!

Since last year in the  2012 NBA Finals Lebron James had that killer instinct, attack mode.  You could see that drive and confidence written all over his face. All the LeBron haters had to keep their mouths closed.  Now in this year’s NBA Finals has the pressure of being Great started to erode him?  Has Agent Smith started to multiple and become a bigger force?  After Game 3 it seems that way, Neo is being cornered and has no where to run or fly away.  LeBron’s biggest nemesis is himself.

I keep hearing about the Spurs defense or Wade being hurt, or even the experience of Popovich and the Spurs’ Big 3, child please, everyone stop it!  Its Lebron! I saw it in the Pacer series in Game 1 even though the Heat won LeBron to me looked unsure of himself.  In my opinion Lebron James is scared of failing.  Lets face it LeBron had only became a finisher last year.  Remember the 2009 game winning three in Game 2 against the Orlando Magic.  You would have thought LeBron was just a fan who won a 2500 dollar check during halftime.  Even he was shocked that it went in.  When the going gets tougher it seems LeBron is very passive or shook!  Or it could be that if he can’t drive to the basket he begins to fold.  If LeBron can’t see inside “The Matrix” he becomes ordinary, and Agent Smith starts to take over.  Eventually we all hope LeBron can live up to the savior we were all told he would become.  Maybe he will but I don’t see it happening this year Spurs in 5.

Maurice "Cool Reece" Thomas @CR_UnSportsMen

Maurice “Cool Reece” Thomas
@CR_UnSportsMen

We got another BLOW OUT!  Really NBA Finals, David Stern you can’t even rig the game to be more competitive.  Hell even Roger Goodell cut the lights in the SuperDome so the Super Bowl wouldn’t be a blow out.  Now back to reality of the Game 3 debacle, just like Game 2 this recap will be easy.  I wrote an article last week called “Game 1 cost the Pacers the Series” and this series is following suit, but the Spurs won Game 1 and since then we have seen the Coaching Chess match between the Jedi Master (Pop) and the Jedi Knight (I know you want to call Spoelstra a Padawan or Youngling, but give the man respect.)  Game 3 was definitely a recover from a Spoelstra “check” in Game 2.  Now on to the breakdown:

In Game 2 I mentioned how Spoelstra went to a small line up on the Spurs to give LeBron mismatches, well Popovich took the strategy and spun it on Spoelstra.  He let the Heat run the small line up and instead of adjusting he basically said “LeBron beat us with a jumper.”and since we are not going small against you we will dominate the boards after the LeBricks.  Now Popovich was even more disrespectful to Wade and basically gave Wade what we call in the hood a “self check”.  Basically giving Wade all space and no respect because Popovich feels Wade CAN’T beat them.  The Heat have been a terrible mid range shooting team all year.  Don’t let the shooting percentage fool you, those shoots were mainly in the paint.

Now we all know the real story of the game was Neal and Green shooting the lights out.  Now I don’t expect them to ever have games like that again, but WOW what a display.  The Heat had a refusal to close out shooters.  With a hobbled Tony Parker the cut and dish was not going to be effective but since Miami decided to let shooters shoot, they got shot out the game and gym.  Still let’s give a shout to the MVP of the Heat right now, Mike “I’m always injured until the Finals” Miller, he was the peasant that tried to save the King, but had no help.

Now a couple of non coaching moves that disappointed me with Spoelstra. The continued reliance on Chalmers was embarrassing, he was a turnover machine, didn’t push the tempo, and he was allowing penetration which was setting up the 3 point barrage from the Spurs.  I also thought he should have thrown LeBron on Parker to stop penetration and just had the wing defenders deny the shooters.  Another suggestion is after you realized that the Spurs were going to make the Heat a jump shooting team, he should have adjusted the line up.  Sit LeBron for a few minutes and go all shooters (Allen, Miller, Battier, Cole, and Bosh) and let LeBron see that he has to penetrate and kick out to shooters.  Then sub LeBron in for Battier and let those shooters try to get them back in the game.  Now I know defensively they would have been suspect, but you have to change it up when your getting destroyed.  Now all of this is for nothing if LeBron wakes up and realizes that he is the best player in the world and get over the fact that he has no help or rather elite help.  Wade is beat and Bosh is just mentally not there and it is showing in his game.

So here’s to a competitive Game 4!  Let’s see what Spoelstra has up his sleeve, because right now Popovich is up 2-1.  Side note is it me or does Popovich remind me of Darth Sidious/Palpatine.  He sits in the press conference and praises LeBron and how great he is and how dumb the rest of the world is, very Palpatine.  Then he gets to the game and the hood comes over and he disses Doris Burke, shoots lightening out of his fingers and laughs all the way to victories.

Jason “Big J” Allen

@UnsportsmenBigJ

With Game 3 of Finals being played tonight in San Antonio the defending champion Miami Heat are looking to take back home court advantage in the series.  The Spurs have two of there big 3 playing but where is the Slashing Argentinian (i made that nickname up)Ginobili!!!!!! #CharlesBarkleyVoice.  Ginobili is avg 9.0pts so far and even worse only took 6 shots in Game 2.

Obviously, everything runs through Tony Parker who should take the majority of the shots but if the Spurs want to avoid getting blown out again they have to get Ginobili involved. I’m not being critical of Pop(currently one of the best in the game if not the best), but I feel that he needs to setup some back cuts and screens for Ginobili to get some easy looks at the basket, those moves may also get him to the line.  Some top of the key isloation plays where Ginobili can take advantage of Chalmers/Cole in the 4th quarter, because the King will be on Parker.  Once #20 gets some easy buckets he’ll regain his confidence and start to play like the man that helped the Spurs win multiple championships.

Again the Spurs won’t win this series without Ginobili.  Or if Pop decides to get his Erik Spoelstra on and sit Ginobili ala D. Wade, but I don’t think the Spurs have anyone else with enough talent to fit Ginobili’s production.  So they will live or die with GINOBILLLLI!!!!  (Again in Charles Barkley voice) and I think they live by him tonight.  My pick tonight is Spurs 101 Heat 97.

Raymond “Big Play” Miller

@bprunsportsmenm

This will be easy.  Basically the Heat BIG THREE out played the Spurs big three.  Even Spoelstra out coached Popovich for stints during the game while the game was close. What did Spoelstra do?  First he forced Popovich to go to a small line up, this is effective because one it allows LeBron to play the 4 (complete mismatch for whoever has to check him.  If its Splitter LeBron steps out on the wing, it was Leonard he got put in the post), but the most important thing going small did was allow the Heat to have an advantage on the boards.  The Heat out rebounded the Spurs in this game.

Spoelstra also noticed that the Heat were getting good looks in Game 1, but didn’t take great advantage of it.  Enter sharpshooters (Miller, Allen, and even Cole has been effective from 3) and exit no legs Wade.  Great adjustment, and the scary part is Popovich is still not pulling the trigger on a no game remaining Manu Ginobli.

Turnovers Turnovers and Turnovers…  4 in Game 1 and the Spurs had 4 in the first quarter and 6 in the 35-5 run the Heat went on.  No one expected to see the Spurs to repeat the amazing 4 turnover stat from Game 1, but you can’t have 17 turnovers and win.  Hell the Pacers, who play better defense than the Spurs, couldn’t win with 16 turnovers, so the Spurs had no chance.

Last moment of note in Game 2 (not the overrated block on Splitter), the way the Heat defended the pick, screen, and roll with Tony Parker.  They flashed high and trapped on Parker and help defense stopped the cutter from getting a the ball in the paint for a high percentage shot.  That is why the Spurs got some great 3 point looks in the first half.  The shots they missed in Game 1 they made in Game 2.

Overall this was a great first half, but a terrible second half for fandom and the Spurs.  The Heat got their legs back (still don’t buy the tired thing, if they were tired Gatorade and Powerade need to get their money back from Wade and James), and were able to force the Spurs into silly turnovers.  I mentioned in the “Outside the Box Predictions” for the series that Spoelstra has to out coach Popovich.  Well Spoelstra did it in Game 2, and the Heat weakness in Rebounding was a strength in Game 2.  May we see a Blair in Game 3 to combat the small line up and give some physical play?  Another “Outside the Box Prediction”.  We will see, here’s to a competitive Game 3!

Jason “Big J” Allen

@UnsportsmenBigJ

I’ve taken my talents to South Beach; Boom Boom Room is shut down for the week.  I’m in wet willies drinking.  Someone call me a cab, but I’m definitely in my zone and so is Tony Parker if the Heat keeps leaving Cole and Chalmers on him.  For those who think Erik Spoelstra can’t coach give the man credit for adjustments made after his team loses a game, especially a game 1.  After losing Game 1 to OKC in last years Finals Heat won 4 straight; after losing games in this years playoffs the Heat have not only won the next game after that but some of them have been blowouts.  Why do you think Pop’s been praising LBJ and questioning the medias basketball IQ?  Meanwhile having his Spurs interns digging up dirt on Gloria (LeBron’s mama). Popovich knows in the Finals you don’t win most games shooting 43% from the field and 32% from 3 and only having 4 turnovers again is highly unlikely.  

Honestly, I feel like the Heat should establish Bosh down low and try to draw fouls on Duncan and Splitter; moreover, putting LBJ on Parker starting the 2nd half would make some sense. LeBron gonna do what he do and play his game and getting teammates involved early.  The other side of this is LBJ may have to take the game over if Wade isn’t more consistent. Bottom line Heat win tonight 95-85.

Raymond “Big Play” Miller

@bprunsportsmenm

It’s the NBA Finals and unless you are living under a rock we all know this series should and will be a Great ONE!  Is Duncan going to match Kobe in rings, and make an argument for having the best Dynasty of this Era (Move over Lakers).  Will the King get revenge on the Spurs sweeping him when he was just a Prince?  Either way this is a career finishing, or defining moment for whoever wins this series.  So I decided to go around what the experts are saying and see if I can pull some points that both teams would need to win.

Spurs ways to win:

Rebounding

The Spurs are a good rebounding team, and they will have to keep that trend up, because we all know the Heat are a lackluster rebounding team (looking at you Bosh).  Along with rebounding they have to revel in the aggressive play in the paint.  The Heat should be coming in a bit beaten and battered so continue the process and hope by Game 6 or 7 the Heat run out of fuel.

Make LeBron a scorer

We saw when LeBron has to carry the SCORING load aka go back to his Cleveland days, the Heat fall apart.  Yes make LeBron become Carmelo Anthony, no teammates involved and dribble, dribble, dribble.  The Spurs should be used to this blueprint, because they used it to sweep the Cavs in the Finals years ago.

Manu, Manu, Manu get off the Milk Carton

This one is easy, the Spurs need Manu to be Great, not good, but GREAT.  These playoffs Manu has shown up in sprinkles, yet this series that will not do.  If Manu can outperform Wade in this series, the Spurs will win.  Remember James and Parker will be a wash, Tim Duncan will basically make Bosh a wash so you need Manu to out perform Wade.  In Game 7 I feel the Heat rediscovered who they are and will bring in a more aggressive Wade, so Manu needs to do what he does best. Score, and frustrate opponents.

Heat Need To Win

Spoelstra needs to out coach Pop, or Better turn into Pat Reily

Erik Spoelstra has to show that he is “THE COACH” in this series.  He can not be out coached like he was in the Bulls and Pacers series.  Why?  Well the Spurs are a way better and polished team then the Pacers and Bulls.  They will take advantage of the bad coaching and bad positioning.  Spoelstra also needs to tap into his inner Reily, and promote strong paint defense, and rebounding.  Remember Reily’s saying “No Rebounding= No Rings”  Spoelstra has to live in that saying and get the Heat to buy in.

Heat Bench has to outplay Spurs bench

The Heat bench was M.I.A. (no pun) for most of the Pacers series, to bad the Pacers didn’t have a strong enough bench to take advantage.  Well the Spurs do, hell Pop benched his starters against the Warriors and the Spurs benched sparked a come back.  So I’m looking directly at you Ray Allen, Shane Battier, Norris Cole, and “Birdman Birdman” (thank you Shaq) Chris Anderson.  These guys have to out perform the Spurs bench and add an element to help the starters to get rest.  If LeBron has to play 44+ minutes a game in this series we will see a repeat of the Mavs vs Heat Finals when LeBron had nothing left in the tank.

Don’t make a Star out of a Non Big Three for the Spurs

What I mean by this, is we expect Duncan, Parker, and possibly Manu to go off and ball out.  At the end of the Finals if we are talking about the great performance of a Leonard, Splitter, Neal, Blair, or Bonner.  Don’t allow any of these player sot make a big four, or play well enough on defense to make on of the Heat big three disappear.  If I had to choose I would say be careful with Blair….  (that’s me letting everyone get all the laughing out)…  (you probably just looked up his numbers and realized he has rarely played in this series)…  (and now do you have control of yourself?  Good I will continue).  Blair has the body and aggressive post play that he can actually contribute in this series.  The Heat have shown they can’t deal with post players that can bang.  So again Heat don’t allow a Big Four to emerge for a Series.

Now these points are outside the box points that I think each team needs to win.  I reserve the right to switch up after each game.  What do you think of my outside the box points?

Jason “Big J” Allen

@UnsportsmenBigJ

 

 

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