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Utah Summer League Day 1 |
After a seven year hiatus the summer league returned to Utah and the first day provided a lot of fun and interesting basketball. The first game saw the Spurs defeat the Sixers in a closely contested match. The second game was between the Jazz and Celtics and seen the host Jazz run away with a victory.
Having covered games at the old Rocky Mountain Revue at Salt Lake Community College seeing the games at Energy Solutions Arena was a welcomed relief. The games had a real NBA feel to them and seeing the players react to the large crowd noises was interesting. I think having world class facilities gives the reborn Utah Summer League a lot of credibility and if rumors are true there will be another Utah Summer League next year.
Utah Summer League Preview |
The Utah summer league is back, and NBA Hoops Online will be covering all 3 days. The Utah Summer League, which was formerly known as the Rocky Mountain Revue, was one of the oldest and most respected summer leagues in the NBA before falling on hard times in the mid 2000s. A number of NBA legands got their first taste of NBA action in Utah, including NBA greats Tim Duncan, Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Dirk Nowitzki, Steve Nash, Karl Malone and John Stockton as well has all-stars like Amare Stoudemire, Tony Parker, Paul Millsap, Deron Williams, and many others.
This year's reboot will feature 4 teams; the San Antonio Spurs, Philadelphia 76ers, Boston Celtics and host Utah Jazz.
13th Annual NHO Award|
MVP, MIP and all the others. Who won what?
The Rise of Gordon Hayward |
If you are like most NBA fans you probably have not paid much attention to the Utah Jazz or their best player Gordon Hayward, but if you have not been paying attention to Hayward you have been missing out on one of most interesting young players in the NBA.
This past off-season the Jazz signed Hayward to a four year sixty-three million dollar contract. A contract at the time that made a lot of Jazz fans nervous.
Fixing the NBA Playoffs|
The NBA playoff system has been a source of contention and annoyance to NBA fans for the last couple of decades. Routinely very good western conference teams are sitting home during the playoffs while their much worse eastern counterparts are still playing and often winning series. Recently, NBA commissioner Adam Silver has suggested that the NBA may abolish its current playoff system and establish a new system; but what would the system look like and how would it help?
The most common suggestion on how to improve the playoff system is to just take the best 16 teams and have them play regardless of conference affiliation.
Top 10 Trades in NBA History |
Basketball is a business. Icons from certain teams are sometimes traded when the time is right. Whether they are unhappy or aging or haven’t meshed with the coaching staff, trades are a part of the business that is the NBA. Here are the top 10 trades in NBA history (in no particular order):
Scottie Pippen for Olden Polynice
The six-foot-eight small forward from the University of Central Arkansas was traded after being drafted fifth overall in the 1987 NBA Draft. He was traded from Seattle to the Chicago Bulls for Olden Polynice. Polynice was a quality big man but Pippen would go on to become one of the greatest players ever. Playing the role of “Robin” to Michael Jordan’s “Batman” Pippen was one of the league’s best all-around players. He was a top-notch defender and excellent on the offensive end as he went on to win six NBA titles.
Top 10 Point Guards Of All-time|
The point guard position is one of the most important ones in the NBA, maybe the most important one. And that has always been the story in the NBA. The point guard is the one who has the responsibility to set up the team on offense. He is the one who advances the ball past the half court, trying to figure out the best way the team can score easy baskets. He is the one who has to find out which the strengths of his teammates are and at the same time which the weaknesses of the opposing defense are so that he chooses to play the right play. Of course, at the same time, he has to contribute by scoring baskets and on the other and of the floor, he is the first line of his team’s defense. In a way, he is the on-court coach or at least, that’s how things are supposed to be.
Of course, nowadays, we’re seeing players other than point guards playing the spot. Shooting guards, small forwards and even power forwards sometimes play the role of the playmaker, with LeBron James and Kevin Durant being just two of the many examples. But things were not always that way. We’ve seen a bunch of great point guards passing from the courts of the NBA through the history of the league. Let’s examine the top 10 of them.
A Look Back at #1 Picks. 1998-2002.|
In our previous article, we have examined the No.1 NBA Draft picks of the past decade. In this continuation article, we will go even deeper into history, examining five more first overall picks. The period which we will look at is from 1998 until 2002. As we mentioned in the first part of our article, we the No.1 draft picks are always in the center of discussions, no matter how many years pass.
A Small Market Dynasty . |
There will be a small market vs big market match up this year in the playoffs no matter who makes the finals. So this could turn into one of the most exciting finals in awhile, the two teams that make it to the finals this year aren't only fighting for a championship, they're also fighting for which way is the better way to build a team either drafting your star players (Spurs/Thunder) or trying getting them through trade/buying (Heat/Celtics). As everyone knows you can't have one without the other, you have to make trades as well as draft and get free agents to join your team, but there are some options that out weigh the others and I believe both the Spurs and Thunder have figured it out.
Why these teams have succeed
the formula is really simple actually, these two teams drafted very well every year and got three guys to commit to one goal and contend as a team. It is very much a team effort and both R.C. Buford and Sam Presti would tell you that, but every team does well based on the caliber of their star players as well as how much those stars try to win. Both of these teams went after a star player first (although to be fair, Robinson was already there when the Spurs got Tim Duncan). These two guys have always been one of the best players in the league and both are very commited to winning. Next they got the star players to surround these two players who can also take over when their franchise guy isn't doing so well. Though these two teams did it differently, the Spurs had to take two really late guys and turn them into stars because they were still trying to contend for championships. The Thunder were still in rebuilding mode when they got Durant thus got their two guys in the top 5, but it's still the same result. Then both teams put players to compliment their big 3 and continue to build to this day (although, that road is almost over for the Spurs).
Being in a small market might be a blessing in disguise, chances are you won't attract big time free agents unless it's their hometown ot the team has a winning tradition. So they save their money in that sense and will hardly ever go way over the luxury tax, thus giving them flexibility down the road. Which is why the Spurs didn't really have a hard time retooling, they didn't really have any huge deals besides Parker's, Ginobli's and Duncan's (also Richard Jefferson, but they managed to move him to Golden State for Stephan Jackson) and thus was able to add Boris Diaw and Jackson this year. Also they have alot of young guys still on their rookie deals such as Leonard,Green and Splitter. I doubt a team like the Lakers, Celtics or Knicks could ever retool like that so quickly without cutting a massive amount of cap.
Top 10 PF in NBA history|
The best Power Forward of all time… there are many great candidates from many different eras and they way to judge would be so hard, you could go on individual success (stats awards etc.) players like Karl Malone and or you could do it on winning and success of the team they were in, then the top of that list become McHale, Tim Duncan and Dennis Rodman all of whom have been very successful, however I have made my list of the top few PFs on a mixture of both success in stats and success in play offs and regular season. The other problem is distinguishing a PF from the C because of the lack of height many of the larger forwards ended up playing center.
NO.10 Dirk Nowitzki,
Dirk is one of the better shooters of all time, his name is often compared to greats like Larry Bird and Kevin McHale. Dirk over his career he has averages of 22.4 points a game, along with 8.6 rebounds and 2.7 assists a game defensively he averages just less than a steal and one block a game. Dirk shots efficiently with 47 percent from the field and 38% from beyond the arch he is also a very successful line shooter, at 87% from the line (he has his routine in which he hums whilst taking his shot) Dirk has won an MVP, and in the same season(06-07) his Dallas mavericks won 67 games, He has been selected to seven All Star teams, and he has been selected to eight All-NBA teams, with three of them as a first-team member. He is also the first and only player from Europe to win an MVP. His style is more of finesse than brute and strength you seem him do some really good mid range jumpers do open up his inside game, as many bigger men struggle with guarding a player with his permitter abilities.
NO.9 Dave Debusschere
Dave was one of the first super Power forwards nicknames “D” and “BIG D” which stood for defence, he was an amazing player with unreal hustle and determination definitely in his times top handful of defenders. In 1996 he was recognised at being in the top 50 players of all time and is unlucky not to be higher on this list. Everyone who ever came up against would leave bruised, he is one of the most physical players of all time. He was never afraid of trading elbows and really fighting for a rebound or lose ball. He was also known for his Amazing Defensive skills, which helped earn his nicknames, he made the All Defensive 1st team 6 times. In his career he averaged a solid 16.1 points and 11 rebounds a game as well as getting 3 assists and shooting 43.2% from the field. A player like him in more recent times was Dennis Rodman, however Dennis didn’t have nearly the same offensive game as Dave. His style of play almost the opposite of Dirk’s as Dave would power it home more often.
The First Basketball: The Mesoamerican ballgame |
Well before James Naismith invented the game of basketball in 1891, the peoples of Mesoamerica had a very similar game where the point was to get a ball though a hoop. The games origins date back as far as one-thousand years before the common era. The game has gotten many names over the years such as; juego de pelota in Spanish; pitz in classical Mayan; and ullamaliztli in Nahuatl. Each area had a variation of the game with different rules and customs but generally the game was the same. The game, which combined aspects of modern basketball, soccer and modern American football, was popular in both secular and religious life before the Spanish invasion of the area starting in 1520.
The game is played with a rubber ball called an ulama and depending on the region can either be played like soccer were a ball must go into a ground goal or like basketball were the ball must go through a stone “hoop” mounted above the playing court. Like the game itself, the courts vary in size and structure as well; from the very small courts found through-out small Mexican villages to the huge courts found at places such as Chichen-Itza. The size and scale of the game and court had an impact on exactly what type of game was going to be played. Much like in modern sports in areas were equipment is rare, the players had to make do with any substitutes they could find. This appears to be exactly the case with the Mesoamerican ballgame, and is a likely reason as to the variations of the game. In the more rural areas the game is played much lower to the ground and the ball is kicked or struck with the lower body more. In the more urban areas where materials and equipment is readily available the game is played higher up on the body, and decorative protective masks are sometimes worn.
JFK, LBJ, Watergate and the NBA Commish. |
There are many strange connections in history and politics, but maybe none as strange as how an eventual NBA commissioner would play a role in bringing down a president. Before David Stern’s monarchial grasp on the office there was Larry O’Brien. A Massachusetts native of Irish decent born in the birthplace of basketball, Springfield, Massachusetts.
Before he became the commissioner of the NBA, O’Brien had been one of the most successful political strategist in American politics. He had a natural talent for politics and got his very first campaigning job when he was 11 years old in 1928. O’Brien slowly moved through the ranks of the Democratic party until in 1952 a young Massachusetts war hero approached him about leading his campaign for Senator; that young mans name was John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
O’Brien did such a successful job on Kennedy’s election campaign that in 1959, when the Senator was running for president, he asked O’Brien to be in charge of his election campaign. After Kennedy won the 1960 presidential election O’Brien became a special assistant to the president.
Top 10 PFs of the 1990s|
Team Name History
The NBA and Watergate
Early Stars of Basketball
History of the Slam Dunk
Jazz Draft First Female Player
Most Improtant Rule Changes
History of Basketball IV
History of basketball: Part IX
History of the Basketball: Part II
History of Basketball: Part I
Articles Archives 2011-NOW
Articles Archives 2007-2011
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Articles Archives 2000-2005
Was Michael Jordan the best player to ever play? some people dont think so, read this compelling argument to weather or not Jordan is the greatest to ever play.
Or Maybe you think Wilt Chamberlin is the greatest ever?
Wilt Chamberlin Files
Maurice Podoloff......... 1946–63 President
Walter Kennedy........... 1963–67 President
Walter Kennedy........... 1967-75 Commissioner
Larry O'Brien............ 1975–84 Commissioner
David Stern.............. 1984–14 Commissioner
Adam Silver.............. 2014- Commissioner
Team location by state
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