Tag Archives: championship

10 storylines heading into NBA Free Agency

It seems as if the 2015 free agency period has the potential to flip the league on its axis. Some teams with restricted players will have to dish out some serious cash to keep a key player. While some playoff teams will no longer be playoff teams after major subtractions.

  1. What will happen in Cleveland? Coach LeBron James is now using the “wait-and –see” approach as if he doesn’t know what he will do. James will stay with the team and he will put his general manager cap. He obviously wants David Blatt gone and more depth added to the team. It doesn’t look like James wants to team up with Kevin Love anymore as the experiment did not work. (Sidebar: Love is capable of getting 20 points and 20 boards each night. He cannot do that by playing on the wing. Just because he can shoot from the perimeter, inaccurately, does mean you should put him there.) James has gone on the record saying that he wants to see Tristan Thompson come back and be a Cavalier for live. For the record, LeBron has not been a Cavalier for life. It is Cleveland after all. That city can screw up a 911 call dialing 119. BTW we will be previewing all 32 NFL teams in 31 days. The first team up is the Cleveland Browns. There are so many great things to not say about this franchise.
  1. Jimmy Butler has singlehandedly carried the Chicago Bulls in the absence of Derrick Rose. Butler is developing into a superstar shooting guard who will have the ability to make another team an instant threat if he were to leave the Windy City. Most likely he will be offered a max salary that Chicago should match. The Bulls would be placed in a tough position if he were to leave. They already are in need of shooters. This team could go from a championship contender to a middle of the pack team. It is the East where a .500 record can get you in the playoffs.
  2. In the past two seasons Portland has had its best record since the Nate McMillan days. The Blazers will lose at least one star. LaMarcus Aldridge has already put his home up for sale and informed the team he won’t be returning. He will become a max player early in free agency. Wesley Matthews is also an unrestricted free agent who happens to be recovering from a torn Achilles tendon. If he is 100% healthy he can make a team better over night. The only notable player that may be left in Portland is Damien Lillard who happens to be going into his final year of his contract.
  3. The Los Angeles Lakers will be spending George Steinbrenner money this offseason. Rumor has it that they will be making a serious push for Kevin Love, Jimmy Butler, LaMarcus Aldridge, amongst others. Can they become ShowTime again? Who knows? Expect Kobe to still put 40 shots a night.
  4. My favorite NBA owner, Mark Cuban, will also be looking to spend some dineros this offseason as he is still trying to win another championship for Dirk Nowitzki. It is rumored that they also want Aldridge, C DeAndre Jordan and PG Goran Dragic. It is safe to say the Rajon Rondo will not be returning to the team as he was a bud Rick Carlisle was happy to nip (People thought the Rondo addition would guarantee them a title. Silly rabbit). The team will most likely not get Monta Ellis back.
  5. Then there are the New York Knickabockers. I, like everyone else, have no clue as to what this team/Phil Jackson is attempting to do. It’s clear Carmelo Anthony does not care about winning. He proved that last year when he decided to resign. It was no surprise to see the team perform to horrifically. It appears as if Greg Monroe is going to join the team and continue to be a part of a below .500 team. It’s a shame to see a team with such a good fan base be so irresponsible.
  6. The Spurs will be resigning Manu Ginobili and Tim Duncan and hoping that they have enough left over to go after Aldridge. Remember Kawhi Leonard is a restricted free agent. It’s not often San Antonio has to make salary and personnel decisions during the offseason.
  7. Boston is going to look to get bigger. Last season they tried unsuccessfully to get Kevin Love. Expect them to land a big name person to go in the post. Brad Stevens and Danny Ainge have done a great job thus far of putting this team together. They came a long way in such a short period of time.
  8. I want to see the Charlotte Hornets pick up someone. Anyone. This team was the biggest disappointment last season. There is a lot of talent, but they can’t put it together. When Michael Jordan, THE GREATEST NBA PLAYER OF ALL-TIME, at age 52 says that he can beat every player on his team there is a serious problem.
  9. Will Dwayne Wade stay in Miami? It would be hard to see him a different jersey next season. Would it matter if he left though? Yes, if Chris Bosh would have been healthy at the end of the season the Heat would have been a playoff team. However, Wade will be one year older this season and if healthy he can give a team a maximum 50-60 games? D-Wade should leave to try to win another title. He should join a team where he would need to play about 30 minutes a night.

Bonus: The Philadelphia 76ers will be looking to add Slava Medvedenko, Nick Young, Mark Madson, Brad Miller, and Kwame Brown. You can never have to many centers and other worthless players, right?

Other bloggers talking about free agency:

Instant Sports Net 

Off My Podium

Pistons Nation

The Athletes Hub

Hoops of America

Blues of Nine

Smirfitts Speech

Photo: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

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Australian Open Preview

Event Name:   Australian Open
Where: Melbourne, Australia
Dates: 1/19-2/1
Surface: Hard Court
Tour: Both
Defending Champ: Stan Wawrinka & Li Na
Runner-up:      Rafael Nadal & Dominika Cibulkova

It feels as if the 2015 tennis season just started and players are already down under for the first major of the year. Many different storylines at play for this year’s tournament.

Women’s Side:

  • Is Serena poised for #19. Last season, in the first three major championships she did not make it into the quarterfinals. She is seeking her fifth championship.
  • If Maria Sharapova does go against Serena in the finals, can she figure out a way to beat her?
  • Can someone break through to get their first major title? Players like Simona Halep, Aga Radwanska, Eugenie Bouchard and Caroline Wozniacki.

Men’s Side:

  • Will Stan Wawrinka prove that last year was no fluke?
  • Does Roger have one more push left in him?
  • Can an American make it to the Round of 16? At this point they all seem hopeless.

Juan Martin del Potro has withdrawn from the tournament. Click here for the story.


Seeded Players:

Seed Male Female
1 Novak Djokovic Serena Williams
2 Roger Federer Maria Sharapova
3 Rafael Nadal Simona Halep
4 Stan Wawrinka Petra Kvitova
5 Kei Nishikori Ana Ivanovic
6 Andy Murray Aga Radwanska
7 Tomas Berdych Eugenie Bouchard
8 Milos Raonic Caroline Wozniacki
9 David Ferrer Angelique Kerber
10 Grigor Dimitrov Ekaterina Makarova
11 Ernests Gulbis Dominika Cibulkova
12 Feliciano Lopez Flavia Pennetta
13 Roberto Bautista Agut Andrea Petkovic
14 Kevin Anderson Sara Errani
15 Tommy Robredo Jelena Jankovic
16 Fabio Fognini Lucie Safarova
17 Gael Monfils Carla Suarez Navarro
18 Giles Simon Venus Williams
19 John Isner Alize Cornet
20 David Goffin Sam Stosur
21 Alexandr Dolgopolov Shuai Peng
22 Philipp Kohlschreiber Karolina Pliskova
23 Ivo Karlovic Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
24 Richard Gasquet Garbine Muguruza
25 Julien Benneteau Barbora Zahiaviva Strycova
26 Leonardo Mayer Elina Svitolina
27 Pablo Cuevas Svetlana Kuznetsova
28 Lukas Rosoi Sabine Lisicki
29 Jeremy Chardy Casey Deliacqua
30 Santiago Giraido Varvara Lepchenko
31 Fernando Verdasco Zarina Diyas
32 Martin Klizan Belinda Bencic

For personal reasons, I want to see Serena and Federer win the titles. Who do you want to see take the title home? Comment below.


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ASB Classic Preview

Event Name:   ‘ASB Classic
Where: Auckland, New Zealand
Dates: January 5-10, 2015
Surface: Hard
Defending Champ: Ana Ivanovic
Runner-up: Venus Williams

For some of the ladies on the WTA Tour the season will begin in New Zealand. A start studded field will try to get the season started off right as 11 of the top 50 players in the world will battle for the ‘ASB Classic title. Ana Ivanovic defeated Venus Williams in the final last season 62 57 64 to get her first title since November of 2011. Ivanovic will not be in this year’s field, however. She has opted to go to the Brisbane International. Seven-time singles Grand Slam champion, Williams, will return to Auckland.

Notable players in the field:

Caroline Wozniacki

Sara Errani

Venus Williams

Barbora Zahalova Strycova

Svetlana Kuznetsova

Sloane Stephens

Coco Vandeweghe

Mona Barthel

Kurumi Nara

Kirsten Flipkens

Roberta Vinci

You may also like the preview of the Brisbane International.

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2015 Brisbane International Preview

Event Name:   Brisbane International Presented by Suncorp
Where: Brisbane, Australia
Dates: January 4-11, 2015
Surface: Hard
Defending Champ: Lleyton Hewitt & Serena Williams
Runner-up:      Roger Federer & Victoria Azarenka

The 2015 tennis season begins next week at the Brisbane International. There are a couple of stout fields ready to show off their new talents before the Australian Open begins in a couple of weeks.

Lleyton Hewitt is ready to defend his title. He beat Roger Federer 61 46 63. It was one of his two titles that he picked up on the year. For Federer, however, it was actually the beginning to a great year. People had written off the seventeen-time grand slam winner, but he proved that he was still a threat to everyone on the ATP Tour.

On the ladies side, Serena Williams will not be in the field this year to defend title. It appears as if she will make her debut at the Aussie Open. Maria Sharapova headlines the field that is mixed with veterans and young hopefuls. Vika Azarenka will try to get over the hurdle this year. Last season, was basically a wash for her, but now seems to be healthy and ready to perform.

Notable women’s singles in the field:

  • Maria Sharapova
  • Victoria Azarenka
  • Ana Ivanovic
  • Angelique Kerber
  • Dominika Cibulkova
  • Andrea Petkovic
  • Jelena Jankovic
  • Carla Suárez Navarro
  • Gabine Muguruza
  • Sam Stosur
  • Sabine Lisicki

Notable men’s singles in the field:

  • Lleyton Hewitt
  • Roger Federer
  • Kei Nishikori
  • Milos Raonic
  • Grigor Dimitrov
  • Kevin Anderson
  • Gilles Simon
  • Sam Querrey
  • Bernard Tomic

Men’s singles that have withdrawn:

  • Marin Cilic
  • Juan Martin del Potro

You may like the preview of the ASB Classic.

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