The Roar
The Roar

Johann Leffler

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Joined September 2017

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NBA fan. Video game enthusiast.

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If only. But the odds of LeBron taking a pay cut are almost nonexistent.

LeBron James and the Pelicans might be a perfect match

Not disputing that, but there are plenty of rumours out there that he wants to be in say, LA, so he can have easy access to his various business connections (and generally be able to do more things outside of basketball). It really depends on what his priorities really are, and we have no way of knowing them.

LeBron James and the Pelicans might be a perfect match

Yeah, he might just want to be in a big market more than anything and just head over to LA. If he does want more rings above all else, New Orleans might offer him the best chance to take GS down.

LeBron James and the Pelicans might be a perfect match

Sure, that very well might be the case. But in a scenario where all he cares about is winning more championships, NO might be the best fit.

LeBron James and the Pelicans might be a perfect match

Definitely! It was nice to see, and boy did they need that from him. Great win for Houston.

Early thoughts on the NBA conference finals

Agreed, well put.

The Toronto Raptors can't be taken seriously anymore

The playoffs are just a different beast, and they’ve shown that they can’t handle it.

The Toronto Raptors can't be taken seriously anymore

After a certain point, regular season success doesn’t mean anything. They’ve been good in that area for years now. Struggling with almost every team they’ve faced in the playoffs over the past three seasons or so (for a team that’s been telling us to take them seriously) is pretty damning. You have the same poor/inconsistent production from their stars, strange coaching moves, etc.

Sure, if they get another star (or maybe even a new coach) things are different. But in their current state, with this core, they’ve been pretty worthless when it counts.

The Toronto Raptors can't be taken seriously anymore

That’s kind of the point though. Their star players have failed to show up for three or four consecutive postseasons. A sweep, no matter how close the games are, is a disaster for a team that has been demanding to be treated as a contender.

The fact that they’ve lost 10 straight playoff games to the Cavs means I’ll be taking any future regular season success with a heavy dose of salt from now on.

The Toronto Raptors can't be taken seriously anymore

The main point is that the fans and players have been especially vocal about demanding respect and complaining when they get overlooked – and yet they wilt in the playoffs every year. While they do always lose to James, they consistently struggle against almost every team they face, inferior or not. The Bucks last year, the Heat the year before, etc. James just puts the exclamation mark on it every season

The Toronto Raptors can't be taken seriously anymore

Agree with all those points. Should be a grind in all the remaining games.

Five keys for the 76ers against the Celtics

Stevens is indeed my pick for coach of the year. The rest of the series should be very interesting.

Five keys for the 76ers against the Celtics

Yeah, the deck is terribly slow – that’s why I said I didn’t think it would remain competitive. Had to mention it as it was all over the ladder for a few days though!

The Witchwood: Early standout decks

They are both perfect players for the type of point guards they play with, that’s for sure.

Revisiting the NBA end of season awards, part 1

Holiday is definitely up there, hopefully he makes All-Defense first or second team – he deserves it. If I had done an honourable mentions section this time around I would have had him at the top. He’s really impressed me this year.

Revisiting the NBA end of season awards, part 1

I can get behind that. Adams has developed into an amazing player, his offensive rebounding rate is insane.

Revisiting the NBA end of season awards, part 1

Mitchell is, imo, a much bigger threat to Simmons than the other rookies in the conversation. He’s scoring well and has produced more highlights as of late, so he’s gradually getting more attention. He’s a fantastic player, but I’m still confident that Simmons brings it home due to his well-rounded skill set. I’d like to see some better scoring performances as the season progresses.

All in all, the race is definitely more wide open than it was after the first month of the season when it looked like Simmons would easily run away with it.

Is the NBA Rookie of the Year race wide open?

They’re stuck in such a rough spot. Gasol and Conley are the wrong age, injury prone and have huge contracts that will make it difficult for them to get a fair return on a trade. And the franchise might be doomed if they blow it up – Memphis is probably the worst basketball market in the league next to New Orleans, so interest is really going to die out if they go through a multi-year rebuild.

I hope something works out for them. I loved watching those grit n’ grind teams in the playoffs.

Exit music: Marc Gasol and the Grizzlies finally recede from relevance

Very true. I can turn on almost any game on League Pass and know that I’ll be watching some good talent.

We’ll see what happens with Ball. I’m hesitant to pass too much judgment on young players, so I just want to sit back and watch him develop.

Handing out the NBA's end of season awards after one month, part 1

I was sceptical at first, but he keeps proving me wrong with each game that goes by. Another 10-20 games of this and he could be at the top of the list.

Handing out the NBA's end of season awards after one month, part 1

The Warriors are something like 23-4 in games he’s missed since 2016 – for a regular season award like this one, I just don’t feel like he’s as crucial to their success as some other players are for their own teams. If, say, Curry were to go down and Durant leads them the rest of the way during the season, then he obviously puts himself into that conversation.

As for Ball, I’m not saying that he’s going to become a great scorer like Beal or even an All-Star – that’s extremely difficult to accomplish. Of course, there’s reason for concern. I’m just saying I feel strongly that he won’t be a bust because he does a few things very well already. He doesn’t need world-class handles to be a productive player in the league. If he can be an above-average starter in the NBA, that’s a successful draft pick.

Handing out the NBA's end of season awards after one month, part 1

I’m not so sure. He’s putting up essentially the same exact stats as last year, and I don’t see him hitching the team to his back and carrying them the same way players like Harden and LeBron do. IMO the Celtics’ success is due more to phenomenal team play (they have so many talented players) and coaching than it is Irving utterly dominating.

Handing out the NBA's end of season awards after one month, part 1

There’s an argument to made there. I simply felt that the three guys I picked have been more dominant in the early going. That can change with 75 per cent of the season still left to play, and Adams is worth keeping an eye on.

Handing out the NBA's end of season awards after one month, part 2

I did mention at the beginning that these awards are a little difficult to evaluate in the early going – and as Tom said, he got off to a bit of a slow start. However, I’ve been impressed with him lately and I agree that his recent play can put him into the conversation (as long as he keeps it up over a bit larger sample size).

Handing out the NBA's end of season awards after one month, part 2

I love Covington – definitely one of my favourite players. I’m just not entirely sure that he’s been enough of a standout defensively compared to some of the other guys. I did tab him as one of my top candidates for most improved in part 1 of this article, though.

Handing out the NBA's end of season awards after one month, part 2