Enough About LeBron- What About Durant’s Charge On Battier?
Saturday , Jun , 16 , 2012 Paul Eide

Enough About LeBron- What About Durant’s Charge On Battier?

For the last two days, all we've heard about is how a non-call on a supposed "obvious" foul committed by LeBron James on Kevin Durant cost OKC a chance at tying, and possibly winning, game two of the NBA Finals.

HoopsVibe Very Quick Call: Non-calls go both ways, folks. Quit whining, OKC.

We know the Thunder are supposed to be the "Good Guys" and we know the Heat are the "Bad Guys" and that somehow the non-call at the end of the game makes LeBron even more of a villiain, but let's not let that cloud our sense of logic, people.

If we're going to venture into the always grey area of call vs. non-call, what about the obvious charge on Durant with 3:21 left where a blocking foul was called on Shane Battier in lieu of giving Durant his 6th foul and an early exit? You could FEEL the entire arena come to a standstill because everyone knew what they saw; a CHARGE, by definition. Watch it again here, it is an absolute textbook charge:

You could also feel the collective butthole of the referees pucker up because they HAD to make a call. Imagine if they would've made the correct call; for as hot as Durant was in the 4th there would have been no comeback for the Thunder, the game would've been over.

This is bigger than two missed calls; this all boils down to the prevailing hate for LeBron James. But why? 

I've always fallen on the Kobe side of the "Kobe vs. LeBron who is better" argument, so I am no LBJ fanboy. But watching him absolutely CARRY the Heat this postseason has been amazing to watch. With no consistency from D-Wade, and an injured Chris Bosh, you see in a hurry how thin the Heat are in terms of talent and depth. If you put Nick Collison on the Heat RIGHT NOW, he'd start at power forward and offer more of an inside presence than anyone else. He's expected to score, rebound, bring the ball up the floor and then defend Russell Westbrook, a top five scorer. Durant, Westbrook and Harden have each other; LBJ gets Wade and Bosh on occasion.

Other than "The Decision", what has LeBron really done to make people dislike him? Guaranteeing winning six or seven titles didn't win him a lot of friends outside of Miami, but if you're a Heat fan isn't that EXACTLY what you want to hear? He makes his free throws, he never gets arrested. By and large it is safe to say he's a good dude; not a villain.

Even if the Heat win the series, LeBron will never "win". If we're going to speculate about the "No call" at the end of the game, then let's call it both ways.

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Image Credit: AP NEWS


Miami’s Big 3 Too Strong for Thunder in Game 2, Even Series
Saturday , Jun , 16 , 2012 Matt Formica

Miami’s Big 3 Too Strong for Thunder in Game 2, Even Series

Miami's Big 3 Too Strong for Thunder in Game 2, Even Series

Last night the Miami Heat came out strong and beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 100-96 to tie the series at one game a piece.

Hoopsvibe's Quick Call:  Coming out strong in the first quarter is crucial in this series.

It was the first time this year that the Thunder has lost a playoff game at home.

The Heat just came out hungry and that was the key to the game.  They opened up the game with a vengeance and at one point had an 18-2 lead.  The first quarter ended with the Heat up 27-15 and that definitely set the tone for the rest of the game.

Thunder Coach Scott Brooks put it best when he said, "They played attack basketball and got us on our heels.  We have to play better from the very start."

He's right.

While OKC would eventually come back only to lose the game by 4, they cannot come out sluggish against Miami and expect to win every game coming back from a deficit.

Kevin Durant and Lebron James led all scorers with 32 points a piece.  We just can't say enough about those two guys.  Both Durant and Lebron have just been unbelievable.  Durant's range and length make him so tough to defend while Lebron's strength is unmatched.  We are all pretty lucky as fans to be witnessing these two superstars go head to head. 

Russell Westbrook, who started off the game playing terribly (yes, terribly) turned it around by the second half and finished with 27 points of his own.

But it was the play of Dwayne Wade, the 2006 version, that really set the tone for Miami.  Wade came out in attack mode, was 3-6 shooting, and had 3 rebounds and 3 assists in the first quarter.

Chris Bosh and Shane Battier also came up huge for the Heat.  Bosh made huge contributions on both the offensive and defensive glass.  He was aggressive and often times gave the Heat second chance opportunities that they hadn't been getting with him on the bench.  He grabbed 15 rebounds in total, 7 of which were offensive.  He also finished with 16 points.  Battier, who's had a great series against the Thunder so far, was 4-5 from three-point land and did a pretty decent job guarding Durant.

There's no question it's still either team's series to win.  But each team will have to come out strong every game in order to win.

"We can't start off 18 and 2.  We can't get down that much especially at home..." Durant said following last night's loss.

Nope.  Not if you want to beat the Heat.

Questions or comments???  Get at us Hoopsvibers!

Image source:  AP Images

Position-by-Position Finals Matchup
Sunday , Jun , 10 , 2012 Elijah Abramson

Position-by-Position Finals Matchup

Here are your position-by-position Finals matchups.

HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: It all starts with Lebron vs. Durant. The matchup of the year. This is the head-to-head mathup everyone wants to see.

CENTER: Kendrick Perkins vs. Udonis Haslem.

Perkis is tough as nails, but isn't much of an offesnive threat. Haslem's been battling it out with Garnett for 7 games, so it's difficult to see Perkins bing any more intimidating that KG. Plus, Haslem has a mid-range jumper he can knock down. Edge: Heat.

POWER FORWARD: Serge Ibaka vs. Shane Battier or Chris Bosh.

Ibaka has always been regarded as a shot-blocking machine and with his recent addition of consistent mid-range shooter he is a true threat on both ends of the court. The real question is whether he can continue to shoot lights out or if his 11-11 night of shooting was a fluke. Bosh is still getting his legs under him, but dropping 17 points and 3 3-pointers in game seven is only going to help. Edge: even.

SMALL FORWARD: Kevin Durant vs. LeBron James.

Durant shoots the 3-pointer better than Durant, but will he be able to get the looks he needs with LeBron on him. LeBron is unstopable from 17-feet and in, but tends to settle for too many outside jumpers, instead of taking the ball to the rim. The real benefit of Durant is he is better at getting his entire team involved. LeBron's the MVP, but Durant is a better franchise player. Edge: Thunder (barely).

SHOOTING GUARD: Thabo Sefolosha vs. Dwyane Wade.

Dwayne Wade hasn't exactly been himself this playoffs. He's been putting up descent numbers, but never really taking over. Sefolosha will put the defensive clamps down on Wade, but Sefolosha lacks offensive skills Wade bring to the table. Edge: Heat.

POINT GUARD: Russell Westbrook vs. Mario Chalmers.

Chalmers is quick by normal standards and a descent shot, but Westbrook is lightening fast and a better shooter. Chalmers will have his hands full trying to keep Westbrook from penetrating at will. Edge: Thunder (By far). 

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Conference Finals Mirror Images of Each Other
Thursday , Jun , 07 , 2012 Matt Formica

Conference Finals Mirror Images of Each Other

Conference Finals Mirror Images of Each Other
On Monday I wrote an article about the critical role home court advantage has played in each conference championship series.  As of Monday, each team in each series had won their games at home; and each series was tied 2-2 going into their respective game 5's.
And of course, in both game 5's, the away team earned victories and completely changed the dynamic.
So here we stand, as NBA fans, waiting to see what happens in each game 6.
Hoopsvibe's Quick Call:  The best team wins.

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Bulls Going After Nash & Kidd
Monday , Jun , 04 , 2012 Andrew Flint

Bulls Going After Nash & Kidd

The Chicago Bulls are making moves to try and acquire either Steve Nash or Jason Kidd this summer. HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Not a bad move since Rose won't be around. Sources are now reporting that the Chicago Bulls are making inquiries to the Suns and Mavs looking to acquire either Steve Nash or Jason Kidd. This indicates that Rose will almost definitely miss all of next year, but it also indicates the Bulls are confident that if they acquire a solid point guard they can still make a run at a championship in 2013. Read More
Does Calling a Timeout Help?
Sunday , Jun , 03 , 2012 Andrew Flint

Does Calling a Timeout Help?

Using quantitative analysis three Norwestern University researches can figure out what coaches know how to call timeout and what coaches don't. HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: I love when sports and nerds collide. Very cool stuff. Read More
Thunder Dominate Game 3 – Game 4 a Must Win
Saturday , Jun , 02 , 2012 Matt Formica

Thunder Dominate Game 3 – Game 4 a Must Win

Thunder Dominate Game 3 - Game 4 a Must Win

Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals between the Spurs and Thunder is tomorrow night at 8:30 P.M. E.S.T. in Oklahoma City.

Hoopsvibe's Quick Call:  In my opinion, it is a must win for the Thunder.

After going down 2-0 in the series, OKC came back with a vengeance at home last night against the Spurs, beating them by 20, 102-82.  It ended San Antonio's 20 game win streak and was the first game that the Spurs have lost this postseason.

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Is Larry Bird The Most Dominant American Sportsman EVER?
Thursday , May , 31 , 2012 Paul Eide

Is Larry Bird The Most Dominant American Sportsman EVER?

“Jordan Vs. Bird” was one of my most cherished Nintendo cartridges ever and it got played to the death.  But if it was “Jordan Vs. Bird- Front Office Executive Edition”, Larry would win every time.

HoopsVibe Very Quick Take: Has there ever been a better player/coach/front office member in any American professional sport than Larry Bird??
On the court, Bird and Jordan were essentially of even skill level and success. But post playing career, it’s obvious who the better front office executive is, as Bird is fresh off winning the NBA Executive of the Year award, while Jordan’s Bobcats are coming off of one of the worst seasons in NBA history.
As a pro player, Jordan is one of the few players who could be considered an equal to Larry Legend. Bird is a three time NBA champ, three time NBA MVP, two time Finals MVP, 12 time all-star and one time All-Star Game MVP.
As a coach, with no prior head coaching experience, Bird won NBA Coach of the Year honors in his first season and led the Pacers to back to back Central Division titles, including an NBA Finals birth in 2000. He retired following that season, but was then hired to the Pacers’ front office in 2003, took over for Donnie Walsh in 2008 and ever since has had a huge hand in making the team what it has become.
Bird is the only person to have ever won even the MVP and Coach of the Year award, and obviously the only person to ever add the Executive of the Year award to that cache. So does that make him the best overall sportsman in American history?
Who else could even be considered in the NBA besides Jerry West? Or in any sport? NFL? MLB?
Leave your comment below.
Photo Credit: AP News 
San Antonio is Making it Look Easy
Thursday , May , 31 , 2012 Matt Formica

San Antonio is Making it Look Easy

San Antonio is Making it Look Easy

Hoopsvibe's Obvious Quick Call:  The Spurs are going to win the series against the Thunder.

Last night, the Oklahoma City Thunder became the first team to score over 100 points against the Spurs this post season.  In fact, they put up 111.

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Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat Preview:  Heat Will be Too Strong
Monday , May , 28 , 2012 Matt Formica

Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat Preview: Heat Will be Too Strong

Boston Celtics vs Miami Heat Preview:  Heat Will be Too Strong

Hoopsvibe's Very Quick Call:  Nothing but respect for Boston, but James and Wade will be too tough to stop.

For the third consecutive year, the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat are set to meet in the playoffs.

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Isiah Thomas Wants Back In; Quick, Look Busy NBA
Saturday , May , 26 , 2012 Paul Eide

Isiah Thomas Wants Back In; Quick, Look Busy NBA

Isiah Thomas wants to get a basketball job, any basketball job. So if you have one, be sure to hit him up.

HoopsVibe Very Quick Call: This is ridiculous.
But just like any potential job seeker, his prior body of work i.e. his resume must be reviewed. If we did that he’d be akin to a lawyer who got disbarred; he may know the law, but he has no idea how it functions.
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Wade Has Knee Drained
Saturday , May , 26 , 2012 Andrew Flint

Wade Has Knee Drained

Wade has knee drained during Indiana series. HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: This can't be good. Dwayne Wade reportedly has been nursing a knee injury through the playoffs. Wade has refused to blame his knee for his mediocre play earlier in the Pacer series, but underwent a minor draining procedure on at least one occasion. This injury to his left knee will likely not heal until the season is over, but the real issue is how far into the playoffs can wade go on it. Wade's slashing aggressive off style is greatly hampered by a sub par left knee, as was evident with his 5 points game three against Indiana. Wade without his cutting ability is like Tina Fey without her Sarah Palin imitation, just not the same. Miami remains mum about the exact condition of Wade's knee, but it will certainly be an ongoing issue now that Miami is in the Eastern Conference Finals. Read More
Pau Gasol Expects To Be Traded
Thursday , May , 24 , 2012 Elijah Abramson

Pau Gasol Expects To Be Traded

Pau Gasol told reporters on Thursday that he expects to be traded.

HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Gasol will not return next year as a Laker.

Pau Gasol's duties with the Los Angeles Lakers officially ended on Wednesday. The question that remains is whether this is the end of the line for Gasol in LA. He struggled through trade rumors earlier in the year when it looked like the Lakers were going to acquire Chris Paul, but after those negotiations fell apart, Gasol position on the team was never quite the same. 


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Crazy Light II Hits Stores Today May 24th
Sunday , May , 20 , 2012 Andrew Flint

Crazy Light II Hits Stores Today May 24th

adidas Crazy Light II Release Date is upon us. Thursday May 24th.

HoopsVibe Very Quick Call: I've been playing in mine for a month and love these kicks.

The adizero Crazy Light 2 is officially hitting stores this today, Thursday May 24th. This shoe is also officially the lightest basketball sneaker in the world weighing only 9.5 ounces. It will be selling for $140 a pop at Foot Locker, Eastbay, and

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