I fucking LOVE Damian Lillard. I was always a fan of his, but when I read his player’s tribune article Loyalty Over Everything. That’s when I truly became a fan of his forever. The article is long but worth the read. To summarize: Damian Lillard believes in Loyalty, it was instilled by his family, and he’s not going to leave the people he rides with. In an age where every NBA player is thinking about their next team, Dame only wants to win for the team that believed in him and drafted him.
Cut to: Bubble Basketball.
The Blazers are finally healthy, except for the fact CJ McCollum is playing with a broken back (yikes) Lillard has put the team on his shoulders and he’s willing them into the playoffs. Jusuf Nurkic and him have been playing great two-man basketball. Carmelo Anthony has been contributing. Gary Trent Jr. and Zach Collins have been very good. But let’s be real it’s all about Dame time right now. On Sunday Lillard dropped 51 on the 76ers to win 124-121.
This came the day after he missed 2 clutch free throws vs the LA Clippers in a loss that put the Trail Blazers playoff hopes in jeopardy. Paul George and Pat Beverly were celebrating the missed free throws and after the game when asked about it, Dame had this to say.
It turned into a war of words online for a minute, don’t battle with Dame Dolla.
51 points vs the Clippers and my guy still has these idiot pundits running their jaws.
Skip Bayless with a future freezing cold take because on Tuesday in an almost must-win game Dame dropped 61 on the Mavs, his 3rd 60 point game of the season. Wilt Chamberlain is the only other player in NBA history to have three 60 point games in a season.
The return of the NBA has been a bright spot in this shitty pandemic and Dame has been the brightest star of the restart. I really wish his running mate CJ McCollum wasn’t fighting back problems, they need CJ if they want to beat LA, but for the time being Dame is putting the Blazers on his back like Greg Jennings.
Pat Mahomes signed the richest deal in NFL History (A 10-year extension worth 503 million dollars)
People have been coming out of the woodwork talking about how this deal will make it impossible for the Chiefs to compete while paying one guy a ton of money.
Let me give the basic bitch tweet from a ton of talking heads in the sports world. It goes something like
“Yeah Mahomes is great but the Chief won’t be able to pay anyone else, the team around him is gonna suck WHAAAAAAH.”
FALSE THIS IS A GREAT CONTRACT FOR THE CHIEFS
First, let us examine the immediate cap hit.
So despite being highly paid guys like Goff and Wilson put their teams in a worse financial position.
The Goff contract stinks because Goff is not that good. Wilson is very good and the Seahawks can live with that deal, they are still a playoff team. It’s not a problem to pay a good QB a ton of money, it is only if you pay a bad QB a ton of money that will kill the franchise. Right now nobody is better than Mahomes.
Next year the Chiefs will bring almost the same team back to the field, they are not like the Rams who had to cut guys they just signed like Todd Gurley to pay for Goff. Tyreek Hill, Tyrann Mathieu, Travis Kelce are all signed up for at least two more years. Mahomes’ two best weapons and the team’s best defender are not going anywhere.
Second, let us examine where the NFL was 10 years ago in terms of QB deals.
The highest-paid QB was Peyton Manning at 15.8 million per year. He was far above the next three highest-paid QBs who were McNabb, Sam Bradford, and Matt Stafford.
10 years later what kind of QB does 15 million dollars buy?
So ten years later 15 million doesn’t even get you, Jacoby Brissett. What was once the paycheck for Peyton in his prime is now something an average QB can scoff at. I’m not saying that in 2030 45 million per year will be what they pay middle-tier. QBs but it is very possible. One thing is for sure by the end of that deal a lot of QBs will be making more money than Mahomes, but I highly doubt those players will be better QBs than Mahomes.
So if early in the deal the cap hit isn’t terrible, and late in the deal other contracts will surpass it and the cap will rise, when exactly does the contract prohibit the Chiefs from building around Mahomes…it doesn’t.
How are you, rail riders? You OK? If you’re not, I got your back. I’m here with a ridiculously detailed deep dive of an upcoming hoops tourney which will soothe our sports fan souls. As the country enters stage two of the reopening process, I felt it was time to get the caboose back chuggin’ along via this preview/sales pitch for the TBT aka “The Basketball Tournament.” I’m not going to spend much time talking about anything other than my favorite non-mainstream sporting event ever, but I am going to say a few things to set the record straight:
1. Black Lives Matter. Please feel free to fuck right off if you fly confederate flags, say “all lives matter,” attend Trump rallies in the face of a pandemic-level virus, and think the cops treat everyone equally.
2. The NBA should not finish the season with a silly format, no fans, and no travel. This structure could/would potentially toy with the record books, realign the league’s historical integrity, and disrupt the modern day organizational structure/balance of power permanently. For once I’m in complete agreement with three dudes I don’t like very much – Kyrie Irving, Dwight Howard, and Billy Bob’s small friend from “Bad Santa” (aka Avery Bradley).
Forget basketball for a second – the time and energy of NBA players is invaluable in other capacities right now. It is immeasurably impactful when applied to the fight for equal rights through non-stop social justice advocacy. Looking at the NBA’s Orlando “bubble” concept as anything other than a distraction, a health risk, or a cash grab would be incompetent and tone deaf. Two players from the odds-on favorites in Vegas are adamantly against playing – that’s all you need to comprehend to get on my level.
3. If you want basketball, PBM’s got just the thing to satisfy your cravings. If you haven’t watched the summertime, single-elimination TBT than you’ve been missing the fuck out, family. It won’t be the same as year’s past when it kicks off in less than two weeks, but it’s got enough March Madness nostalgia and enough top notch hooping ability to satisfy any basketball fan who is feening for competitive ball. Here’s a crash course preview of this year’s participants and a predictive breakdown of the bracket:
For the most past, teams in this tourney are made up of alumni from one school (with a ringer or two), alumni from specific conferences, or they’re occasionally built from scratch by enterprising GM’s. Last year marked the fifth time a million bucks or more went in the winning team’s pockets. The #1 seed this year, Carmen’s Crew, won two million bucks a summer ago. When they hoisted the check after the finals, it was the first time anyone had beaten the defending four-time champions and this year’s #2 seed, Overseas Elite. I’ll fill you in on each team’s roster shortly. I need to inform you about the Elam Ending – it’s how this tourney decides who wins and who goes home.
Did you like the NBA All Star game this year? Pretty fuckin’ dope fourth quarter, right? The notion of playing to a score instead of playing for a set period of time adds excitement and intensity in spades. Guess what? They stole this idea from the TBT. The Elam Ending sets a target score, based on the total points of the game’s leading team, and the winner is the team who reaches that number first. Here’s an example of how a ton of games end:
Way better than foul-chuck-foul-chuck-foul, right? It makes every game at least slightly enjoyable. Without further adieu, let’s breakdown the bracket and make some predictions. Here are the eight teams receiving a first round bye:
#1 Seed: Carmen’s Crew: This a team made up of almost every non-NBA or NBA coffee cup sippers who played for the Ohio St. Buckeyes in recent years. They’re even coached by their own – Evan Turner led them to a tourney title last year and this year Jared Sullinger has the whistle. If you’re underwhelmed by their notable players, try not to be. This group did the impossible and beat an undefeated, four-time champion last year. Enough said.
Noteworthy Buckeye Alums: Aaron Craft, Jon Diebler, David Lighty, Dallas Lauderdale
Ringers: Demetri McCamey (Illini traitor), Pape Malik Dime (Washington)
Plays winner the winner House of Paign/War Tampa
#2 Seed: Overseas Elite: The Gods of this universe have OE on their chest – these dudes are without a doubt the favorites to reclaim their spot at the top of the mountain this summer. They brought in the biggest newcomer of the tournament in addition to keeping their St. John’s fueled, long standing core intact. The Johnnie’s core is made up of DJ Kennedy (tourney MVP for their wins), Paris Horne, and Justin Burrell. They’re the equivalent of the Splash Bros. + Draymond. Who is the FA playing the role of KD in this compassion? Iso fuckin’ Joe. Joe Johnson is running with the champs and the rest of the bracket should be petrified.
Returning players: D.J. Kennedy, Paris Horne, Justin Burell (all St. John’s alums), DeAndre Kane (Iowa St.), Bobby Brown (Drew league standout and former Houston Rocket)
Noteworthy additions: Joe Johnson, Pooh Jeter (Drew league standout with handles for days)
Plays winner of Armored Athlete/Power of the Paw
#3 Seed: Boeheim’s Army: Jim Boeheim murdered a man with his personal vehicle. You know this, right? It makes sense for a murderous driver to field a team of soldiers who march to his insanely consistent commands. The zone is dead, Jim. Just like the guy on the side of the road in upstate NY whom you hit with your car. This army has no mercenaries – it’s all Cuse alums. They’re also seeded WAY too high.
Notable players: Eric Devendorf, Brandon Triche, Donte Greene, Malachi Richardson, Chris McCollough
Play the winner of HEARTFIRE/Men of Mackey
#4 Seed: Golden Eagles: This group of Marquette alumni have become a fixture at the TBT. They’ve also won quite a few games – I’m pretty sure they’re a finalist and a multi-time final four participant. Built with dudes who played extensive pro ball all over the world and a few who with NBA chops, these guys are no joke.
Notable alumi players: Travis Diener, Dwight Buycks, Mo Acker, Jamil Wilson, Darius Johnson-Odom, Andrew Rowsey
Ringer: Elgin Cook (Oregon)
Play the winner of Team CP3/Mid-American Unity
#5 Seed: Eberlein Drive: This is one of those teams built by an enterprising GM – Eberlein Drive has been a consistent presence in TBT’s since the early days and rarely show up with the same squad of the prior year. Cal’s Jerome Randle led them to the Finals one year, but they’ve had minimal success in their other years. This team is boom or bust deluxe.
Notable players: Dusty Hannahs (Arkansas), J.P. Macura (Xavier, Cleveland Cavaliers), Tim Quarterman and Johnny O’Bryant (LSU)
Play the winner of Brotherly Love/Stillwater Stars
#6 Seed: Team Challenge ALS: Perennial contenders in this tourney, Team Challenge ALS was built by BC alum Sean Marshall and the late Pete Fraites of Barstoolsports.com fame. They’ve too have been a runner-up to OE, but haven’t been on a run for a few years now.
Notable players: Sean Marshall and Tyrese Rice (BC), Casper Ware (Drew League LEGEND), several San Diego St. alums
Player winner of Team Hines/Sideline Cancer
#7 Seed: The Money Team (TMT): Not sure if this team’s management has been in a TBT before, but a bunch of these players have TBT experience (and tons of additional high-level pro balling to go with it). I like this team A LOT. I also think Floyd Mayweather funds it or is involved in another capacity…hence the unoriginal name.
Notable players: Tony Wroten (Washington, NBA), Willie Reed (SLU, NBA), Austin Daye (Gonzaga, NBA), Trevor MBakwe (Minnesota), Jordon Crawford and Jeff Ledbetter (TBT stars from Jimmer Fredette’s squad a year or two ago)
Plays winner of Jimmy V/Herd That
#8 Seed: Red Scare: Dayton alums from the 2014 Elite Eight are mixed with a couple of Obi Toppin’s running mates from last year and one nasty ringer in Louisville’s Ryan McMahon. One of the four/five favorites to take the crown.
Notable alumni players: Devin Oliver, Ryan Mikesell, and Trey Landers
Ringer: Ryan McMahon (Louisville)
Plays winner of Big X/Jackson TN Underdogs
Got all that, rail riders? It is time to breakdown the first round matchups and the rest of the action set to follow them – intrigue is everywhere in these games, children. The winners’ names are in Italics.
#9 Big X
#24 Jackson TN Underdogs
Javon Bess, Nick Ward (Michigan St.)
Jaylen Barford (Arkansas, TBT legend)
Khalil Iverson, Trevon Hughes (Wisco)
Courtney Pigram (ETSU Standout)
Big X’s depth is too much for Barford and Pigram, but this is game will be close as hell.
#10 Playing For Jimmy V.
#23 Herd That
NBA Coffee Sippers Josh Perkins (Zaga), Haywood Highsmith
Marshall alums including Jon Elmore, CJ Burks
UCF Big Men Chad Brown, AJ Davis
Zach Smith (Texas Tech), Jacorey Williams (Middle Tenn)
Heart says the Marshall team, but my head says Jimmy V in a possible blowout.
#11 Team Hines
#22 Sideline Cancer
Ethan Happ (Wisco), Gilbert Brown (Pitt), Delroy James (URI)
Jamal Artis (Pitt), Maurice Creek (GW via IU)
Nick Calathes (UF), Brandon Paul (Illini), AJ Slaughter (WKU)
Andrew Fitzgerald (Oklahoma), Dion Wright (Bonnies)
Team Hines by double digits. They’re a favorite in this field.
#12 Brotherly Love
#21 Stillwater Stars
Temple alums including Khalif Wyatt and Ramone Moore
Markel Brown, Phil Forte, and LeBryan Nash (aka dudes who ran with Marcus Smart)
Penn St. standout D.J. Newbill
Tyshawn Taylor and Nadir Tharpe join as ringers from KU
Upset due to poor seeding. The Cowboy/Jayhawk evil duo wins by 6-12 pts.
#13 Team CP3
#20 Mid-American Unity
Kennedy Meeks, PJ Hairston (UNC)
Alums from mediocre. forgettable MAC teams
Dez Wells (Maryland)
Marcus Hall (Colorado)
I’d pick anyone over this MAC team. They shouldn’t be in the field. The Tennessee alumni team with Wayne Chism, Duke Crews, Ron Slay, Jajuan Smith, Tyler Smith, and Melvin Goins got hosed. I’m really bitter about this. CP3’s crew wins in a rout.
#19 Men of Mackey
Homer Drew coaches Baylor’s Quincy Miller, Ish Wainwright, & the insiring Isaiah Austin
Jon Octeus + the goofiest looking Purdue alumni on this planet
Zona G Mark Lyons joins Sparty alums Brandon Wood, Branden Dawson
Goofs incldue Ryan Cline, Isaac Haas, Evan Boudreaux
I can’t pick against this collection of Purdue legends. This game is 50/50 at best.
#15 Armored Athlete
#18 Power of the Paw
Standouts include Dominique Jones (USF) Terico White (Ole Miss), Michael Ojo (FSU)
Sneaky solid recent Clemson alums Gabe DeVoe, Marquise Reed, and Elijah Thomas
Arkansas alums Courtney Fortson, Coty Clarke
Ringer is Mizzou’s Jakeenan Gant
Clemson has been a decent hoops program for a couple years under Brad Brownell. These recent graduates of his program will not be an easy out for unpolished squads.
#16 House of Paign
#17 War Tampa
Recent Illini alums led by LeRon Black, Andres Feliz, and Michael Finke
Bryce Brown headlines crew of Auburn alums
Best ringers by far: Matt Mooney (Texas Tech), Mike Daum (SD St.)
Dope ringer tandem: Fletcher McGee (Wofford), Walter Hodge (UF)
Unreal matchup. Mooney is my man crush and he makes the difference for HOP.
PREDICTED ROUND OF 16
#16 House of Paign def. #1 Carmen’s Crew
#8 Red Scare def. #9 Big X
#4 Golden Eagles def. #13 Team CP3
#21 Stillwater Starsdef. #5 Eberlein Drive
#19 Men of Mackey def. #3 Boheim’s Army
(Boheim killed a guy with this car – we don’t reward that stuff at ATrainsports.com)
We made it, rail riders. We fuckin’ made it. The entire season has been simulated, and we have a champion. Not only do we have a champion, but that champion is the one we deserve. Like I said in the Eastern Conference results blog…was there ever any goddamn doubt?!?!?
The Chicago Bulls are your PBM Covid-19 Ultimate Fantasy NBA kings! They swept the damn Lakers, baby. The Bulls went 16-4 in the playoffs. They fuckin’ dominated this shit, baby. The lone shocker? Allow me to introduce you to your Finals MVP:
Jordan can’t win the award every single time, I guess. MVP-level Derrick Rose is getting his flowers in our simulated universe and it’s a beautiful sight. How lucky is the rest of the NBA, and especially LeBron James, that this guy couldn’t stay on the floor in his prime? Rose could’ve been a top 20 player of all time, people. Basketball fans were ROBBED of some amazing moments by his faulty legs. It brings me great joy to celebrate D Rose via this forum, and I’m stoked his best season shined through in this medium.
…and that’s the end of that, rail riders. Hope you enjoyed reading the content this concept yielded as much as I enjoyed creating it. I’m going to try and deliver more elaborate material such as this throughout the pandemic, and any feedback is truly welcome.
Until next time – wash your goddamn ass, passengers. Deuces.
All aboard, rail riders! Your boy PBM is back to bring you the winners, losers, and key moments from the simulated ultimate NBA league’s Eastern Conference. Let’s jump right to it – here’s the completed bracket:
Was there really any doubt, family? Despite a lackluster regular season (when compared to his Airness’ Bulls standards), Jordan and the Bulls smashed the competition in the playoffs. Barkley and Reggie took them to six, but no one else gave them any real trouble. The false king LeBron James lost in seven to the team he “owns” per his legion of Bronsexuals, and here’s the box score from that contest:
The loss definitely doesn’t fall on Bron Bron’s shoulders as he put in a monstrous statistical performance. Unfortunately, he didn’t have Chris Bosh on his side this time. Bosh’s excellence has been vastly ignored in the annals of NBA history, but not in the PBM Ultimate league. All that said, the biggest subplot from this game was the foul discrepancy. Good God, man. Some AI being hates LeBron just as much as we do here at ATrain Sports!
The other first round happening of note was Russell Westbrook’s Hawks burying the Celtics. Peep Russ’ numbers in the third game of the series:
Shaq and Russ single handily vanquished the Nash / Garnett Celtics. They also participated in the craziest series of the playoffs in the second round vs. Toronto. Two games ended on a buzzer beater, and not one game was decided by less than five points.
Kawhi ties it with :05 seconds left, and Russ answers for the Hawks! One good turn deserves another, and here’s the end of the second buzzer beater of the series:
Kevin Willis with the dagger! Unreal, man. The big man played significant years for each team in this series, and he sinks the squad from his youth with the logo of his veteran self’s organization on his jersey.
I wish I could place some emphasis on another series or game, but Jordan and Derrick Rose wouldn’t allow for it. Almost every game was a blood bath. I’ll be back with the Finals results shortly, loyal passengers. It’s the Bulls and the Lakers for all the glory!
Stay safe, wash your ass, and clean your heads. PBM has the back of all non-filthy fucks during this pandemic.
Happy Monday, rail riders! Mondays no longer have a feel in quarantine, right? No days have a feel anymore and it sucks. If it wasn’t for STL Sports Columnist Ben Hochman’s insistence to use non-stop Seinfeld material in 2020, I’d post Costanza’s understanding of days with feels. Can’t be a hypocrite, family. Let’s get into the real reason we are here and discuss how the western conference unfolded in my ultimate NBA simulation. ALL ABOARD!!!
Last week I unveiled the fantasy rosters of all 30 NBA teams and only hoped I could take it further. Immediately after posting, I remembered a site I used to be heavily involved with called whatifsports.com. This site allows for users to make dream teams in all the major sports – it’s nerd heaven. Twelve or thirteen years ago, ya boy PBM used to mop fools up in simulated NBA seasons. My squads won trophies, people. It was the perfect way to waste time in the corporate office setting. Alas, upon getting out of the corporate world and giving up my oxy addiction meant whatifsports.com leaving my life. Until this weekend…when it returned with a bang!
Whatifsports.com isn’t perfect. It’s not god-level AI. But it is the best free sports simulation available, and I wanted to take this concept further.
I didn’t simulate an entire season in the traditional NBA format – that would’ve taken me until 2025 to do. Instead, I had all the western conference teams play their division opponents six times (three at home, three on the road). Based on those results, I seeded the playoffs. The playoffs were executed in the traditional playoff format – best of seven games in the 2-2-1-1-1 rotation. Here’s who made the playoffs:
The Blazers went on the road to beat the Clippers in a play-in game for 8th slot. The box score is below (whatifsports.com brings the statistical thunder).
I was deeply saddened by how limited this Clippers team ended up being. Steve Francis and Blake Griffin aren’t the best team basketball players and it showed. Pippen and McHale deserved better, and I’m sad about it. However, the biggest takeaway from this game is the Hakeem / McHale battle in the post. The two deadliest post players of all-time went back and forth and rarely missed. The advantage was Dream’s, as he crushed McHale on both sides of the boards.
The rest of the western conference played out in a way which illicited more sadness…I made the Lakers too fucking good. Also, the Sonics flamed out in the playoffs despite dominating their regular season schedule. Bad times all around for ya boy.
I pulled a few noteworthy box scores along the way. Find them below.
Game four of the Spurs / Kings series. TMac did all he could to not flame out AGAIN in the first round of the playoffs. Alas, he was swept. Only TMac could get a Bill Russell team swept in the first round of the playoffs. George Gervin absolutely lit up the Kings’ wings this entire series.
Game six of Lakers / Spurs. The Spurs blew a twenty point fourth quarter lead…ugh. This Lakers team might be the ultimate showcase of how under appreciated Jason Kidd, Pau Gasol, and Anthony Davis really are. I should’ve given them Nash, McAdoo, and Dwight Howard instead – sweet moves, PBM.
Game two of the western conference finals. Look at the FT shooting.
EVEN IN SIMULATIONS THE LAKERS GET ALL THE FUCKING CALLS!
This happened twice in the Spurs series and once more in the finals. The Lakers are going to win my fake league and/or lose to LeBron’s Cavs. Eastern results coming tomorrow. Stay safe, family. Please allow this throwback heat from G-Unit to play me out the door..it’s been in heavy rotation for ya boy this month.
Rail Riders! It’s been too long since I left you…without a dope blog or any content at all to truly step to! This changes now…and it changes in a HAAA-UGE way. Your boy PBM finally sat down and did something he’s wanted to do for years, and the Rona revealed the opportunity. I’ve made the largest cup of lemonade you’ve ever seen out of the quarantine lemons we’re all engulfing. So large that it would take Train three days to lose himself in glasses of it while pelting or losing his precious body armor via the wacky world of fallout.
I sense you’re skeptical. You don’t believe I’ve truly shifted the narrative, correct? Well…how about if I told you I drafted ten-men rosters for every team in the NBA using the traditional snake style and based the order on this year’s standings? How about if I told you I decided to make every single player who’s ever played the game available to be selected?
Here’s how I did it:
The draft order was created using this year’s standings. I manipulated the lottery in order to allow for certain star players to play for the team’s they became stars on.
Throughout the draft I prioritized placing individuals on teams whom they contributed for / excelled on / won titles with.
The all-time greats were placed with purpose…for the most part. That purpose was fueled by irony, intrigue, or historical significance.
Dumb teams remained dumb. I also have a bias against the Nets, so they purposefully made some silly decisions.
The Thunder moved back to Seattle.
Team’s identities / playing styles / management trends were always top of mind, and organizations which reward loyalty were given priority to land a player whom has ties to their franchise.
Without further adieu, here is what unfolded (you’ll see the number in which players were chosen next to their name on every roster). I’ll do some intensive roster breakdowns either later today or this weekend.
Here’s some observations at first glance:
The favorites at first glance are the Bulls, Pistons, Blazers, Hornets, Warriors, Kings, and Clippers.
Just outside of the top teams are the Cavs, Spurs, TWolves, Wizards, Pacers, Sonics, Celtics, Raptors, and Lakers.
The weakest rosters belong to the Suns, Nets, Rockets, and Bucks.
As far as specific players landing on specific teams, here are my initial thoughts on what results are the dopest:
I think Magic leading a Pistons team (he’s from Michigan) built with members from each era of the Bad Boys’ championship runs is an insanely hilarious idea…and it might yield dominance.
I love the Blazers finally landing their elite big man in Hakeem with the fifth pick – pairing him with Dame, Roy, Sheed, and Big Game James gives Dream the chance to prove he’s the GOAT big man.
Reggie and Barkley teaming up in Naptown to beat Jordan is awesome – Barklye isn’t distracted by clubs, good food, and women. Not to mention Ben Simmons giving them each their desired number of looks.
Legendary Celtics’ winners Bill Russell and Dennis Johnson leading a Kings squad loaded with as much talent as they have playoff failures. I basically added TMac and Jokic (along with the aforementioned Celts) to the core Kings squad that was constantly robbed in the early 2000’s).
The Splash Bro’s and Igouyoshi teaming up with Brad Beal in DC. That three guard lineup could eat souls in any era.
Pippen and McHale finally stepping out of MJ and Bird’s shadows with the Clippers. That duo teaming up with some under appreciated all star guards (Deron & Franchise), arguably the most prolific Clipper ever (Blake Griffin), and their beloved threesome of Lou, Trezz, and PBev makes the Clipshow pretty damn vicious.
What guards / wings are scoring on Glove / Klaw in crunch time? The Raps are no joke.
The Hornets don’t trade Kobe, and he gets paired with Bill Walton and Luka. Yikes.
Durant gets to lead an amalgamation of his title winning Warriors squads (sans the fan favorites whom relocated to DC) and the beloved “we believe” team of ’06-’07. Can he handle Baron and Draymond yelling in his face every timeout? If he can, they’re as good as anyone.
The Knicks landed two dudes, one past (Kareem) and one present (Jimmy Butler), to pair with franchise icons Willis and Pearl. It probably isn’t enough.
Darryl Morey used analytics to pair Rick Barry’s efficiency with James Harden’s…and the Rockets get obliterated by 50+ night in and night out.
The two studs who conjure up as many throwback vibes as anyone currently in the league (Giannis & CP3) lead the return to Seattle for the Sonics. The modern Glove – Reign Man aren’t alone…Ben Wallace’s fro, Grant Hill’s versatility, and Devin Booker’s dick round out their nasty starting five.
The Bucks stink because their front office is dumb…they overextend on guys whom are past their prime / poor fits every year. Same goes for the Suns.
N’awlins is the biggest “what-if” unit. Moses and his modern equivalent (Zion) just could be too much for any squad to handle.
Despite all the observations above, the favorites in the clubhouse are the Bulls. The GOAT running alongside both D. Rose and Kemp in their primes is simply incomprehensible. It would probably always look like this…
and DEFINITELY THIS…
Bulls are -150 in fake Vegas, family.
Come back in the next day or so for a simulated season of results, awards, and fake observations. All feedback is desired, welcomed, and possibly dismissed.
When I wrote yesterday’s free agency blog I briefly touched on the Bears. I didn’t give my take on Jimmy Graham because I had no clue how much they were paying him. Turns out it was SO MUCH MORE than I anticipated. They gave him two years 16 million and 9 million guaranteed.
What the fuck?
The Bears just cut Leonard Floyd because they didn’t want to pay him and he signed with the Rams on a 1 year deal for 10 million. So let me get this right, you’re willing to pay a beyond washed-up tight end 8 million a year but not 10 million for a guy who probably still has his best football in front of him. I would much rather have Floyd with Quinn and Mack, and have a deep defense than pay Jimmy fucking Graham who hasn’t been good since he was in New Orleans. He was bad in Seattle with Russell Wilson, he was bad in Green Bay with Aaron Rogers…Guess what he will be in Chicago?
It cool though the Bears traded a 4th round pick for Nick Foles and the contract that is overpaying him. Quarterback problems solved.
You know what troubles me about former super bowl MVP Nick Foles? His offensive coordinator in Philly was Frank Reich. Frank Reich is now the head coach in Indy. Did Frank Reich, who needs a QB, try and work a deal for Foles? No. Instead, the Colts signed the deteriorating Phil Rivers. This is a concern dude.
Since coming to the Bears GM Ryan Pace has drafted some serious busts with very high draft picks.
Kevin White – Often Injured Bust who is in danger of being out of the league #7 overall.
Mitch Trubisky – #2 overall picked ahead of Mahomes and Watson. They traded up from 3 to 2 to pick this guy because Pace was scared someone else would take him….I wish dude.
Leonard Floyd – #9 overall, not a bust but they also traded up for this pick with Tampa Bay and they cut him before his rookie deal was done.
If Foles wins the starting QB job the Bears will have no starters from picks 2,7,9 overall.
The Bears have a real tendency to trade up for guys who aren’t good. That’s not the mark of a competent GM.
Luckily Pace traded his last two first-round picks (this upcoming draft included) for Khalil Mack employing the strategy of not failing on your first-round pick by virtue of not having one.
If you went into a coma from drinking too much eggnog in late December just to wake up to the reality of March 17th, 2020 the shock of the world you now live in just might be too much to mentally grasp. This much change could cripple even the strongest of minds. Especially for sports fans. Imagine finding out that Kobe Bryant is dead in a tragic accident, all sports have been canceled until further notice, there will be no March Madness, Tom Brady is on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, all at the same time! Oh yeah, it’s because of a virus shut down the country and crippled the economy, good luck finding hand sanitizer.
The only relevant “sports” that are happening is NFL free agency which has turned the league upside down with an unprecedented quarterback carousel.
Tom Brady is a Buccaneer.
Phil Rivers is a Colt.
Teddy “TwoGloves” Bridgewater is a Panther.
Ryan Tannehill is the guy in Tennessee.
Cam Newton is looking for a home.
Jameis Winston is looking for a home.
New England has no QB as of right now unless you count Jarrett Stidham which I do not. His name may be Jarrett but he has about as much potential as a Jared.
I think that New England will definitely draft a QB the question is how early and who? I saw a mock draft on CBS that had them taking Jacob Eason. Normally I’d say there is no way they would draft Eason…The Pats drafted his father over Dan Marino a long time ago. But then again they did draft Jarrett Stidham.
The guy I would like to see them take a chance on is Jalen Hurts. Hurts is first and foremost a guy who carries himself in a very professional manner. He is a natural leader and a guy that is athletic, smart, and showed improvement as a passer at OU. I have a feeling Bill Belichick is itching to run a different style offense with a more athletic QB. In Hurts you have a guy that is already a Patriot type player with athleticism that will work his ass off to get better each year.
If they took Eason over Hurts then the Patriots just want to try and do the same stuff that they did with Brady except with an ass clown at QB. (I watched way too much of Eason in College to think he’s good.) He would make a great NFL type throw here and there, but there is no consistency to his game and he has problems handling a pass rush that leads to bad decisions.
The Bears signed Robert Quinn (cool) but released Leonard Floyd (not cool) I love Quinn but Floyd is a good player that the Bears just didn’t want to pay, he’s going to find a home somewhere and be awesome.
Bill O’Brien…this guy. WOW.
He trades Nuk Hopkins for David Johnson and a 2nd rd draft pick to Arizona. I don’t know what to say. You could have just kept Hopkins and drafted a running back. You could’ve probably traded Will Fuller for another RB very comparable in ability to David Johnson. This is awesome for Kyler Murray and Arizona Cardinals fans. The NFC West looks to be very competitive next year. It’s very possible that the Rams who were just in the Super Bowl could finish in last place. The Texans are a ship with a buffoon for a captain, I feel bad for DeSean Watson.
Stefon Diggs is now a Buffalo Bill after getting traded for draft picks. I don’t think this will sit well with Vikings fans even if it makes sense. When the Vikings were in Seattle I saw the traveling fan base and there were a ton of Diggs Jerseys. Way more Diggs jerseys than Cousins or Adam Thielen. Diggs was the playoff hero vs New Orleans, those fans love him. Bills Mafia will love him too. I see what the Vikings are doing, they want to free up money to make sure the defense is still solid, and this draft which they now have a ton of picks in is loaded at the WR position. They will probably spend an early pick on a guy who can replace what Diggs gave them. Henry Ruggs would be an ideal fit.
I don’t think the Bears are done making moves they must sign a QB, Chase Daniel is a Detriot Lion now. I’m sure I’ll be back to blog my reaction to the fiasco that is the Bears QB situation.
The NBA stretch run express train has entered the station, rail riders! Hop aboard and stand clear of the closing doors. Don’t be frightened by the realization that today’s journey will be inspired by none other than ESPN’s Zach “Don’t Call Me an End Theory” Lowe. Despite our deep seeded hatred for ESPN’s coverage of literally everything, the Zach Attack’s format works perfectly for PBM to unveil all the elements of his consistently tumultuous relationship with the national basketball association. It’s gotten to the point where I don’t know if I love what I love more than I love what I hate…it’s weird spot to be in for a budding mental health professional such as myself. But ya know what? Weird is good. Weird is new. And weird is gonna yield a breakdown of my current top ten love’s and hate’s in the polarizing stratosphere of the NBA.
Chip Tha Rip and Bun B – get this fuckin’ party started!
I love Zion Williamson in every way you can. However, what I love the most how he walks during every moment outside of live game play. It’s a hybrid of “March of the Penguins” + “Go to your room, young man!’ Take it away, Chuck!
In addition to the humor residing beside his inexplicable gait, Zion has failed to disappoint in almost every quantifiable way. Peep the young king in action:
2. More Zion! Because using Zion to gaslight LeBron STAN’s from now until eternity is going to be just delightful! Zion has started his career better than Bron, did you know that? Using #numbers and #facts, Zion is officially a better hooper than the Kid From Akron until further notice. Here’s the evidence (which I can guarantee isn’t fake news):
3. I am enamored with Bradley Beal’s electrifying, unrelenting, and inexplicable hot streak that is driving his team towards possibly being the 8th seed in the East. I’ve always loved Beal because he’s an STL guy that plays an effortless style of basketball in the mold of TMac, Manu, and other elite scorers of year’s past. I’m now fully infatuated with him due to his insane competiveness and next-level elevation of each facet of his game. Peep his 2020 game log, please:
The man is a human torch right now. He’s rising his level and competing via peak performance in an era where most dudes would get elective surgery in lieu of playing alongside Beal’s supporting cast. His second best player can literally only shoot 3’s, and his third best player is a rookie from Gonzaga who is constantly overmatched at this natural position. Here’s the current Wizards squad in all their mediocrity infused glory:
Beal’s officially a made man around these parts. Any aggression upon him will be met with equal or more extreme measures from the caboose.
4. Keeping it in STL – I love that Jayson Tatum is making a push for a spot in the top ten players in the league. Tatum has gotten his flowers incessantly via mainstream media, but I couldn’t leave him off the debut love’s.
5. I’m romantically invested in the Clippers savvy deadline moves, continued improvement, and constant one-upping of the Lakers. I’m way more enthralled by the Clips bringing in Reggie Jackson than them trading for Marcus Morris, but the facts are that these two additions have enabled them to run TEN DEEP via two solidified five-man units.
They’re starting PG, PBev, Kawhi, Zubac, and Marcus Morris
The second unit is Trezz, LouWill, Reggie Jackson, Landry Shamet, and Jamychal Green.
The crunch time five includes Kawhi and PG + any 3-man combination of Trezz, LouWill, PBev, Reggie, and Marcus.
Versatility in spades, children. You know who doesn’t have anything close to this roster? The Lakers. You know who plays on Sunday? The Clips v. The Lakers. You know who’s gonna remain undefeated again LeBron’s merry band of buttheads? The Clippers.
Closing out my loves…
6. I love Golden State taking a chance on Andrew Wiggins while also being in position to add Obi Toppin via the lottery. I love even more how Steph is going to run with their young, role player laden roster to determine who fits and who doesn’t for next year’s unit. A starting five of Steph, Klay, Wiggins, Donkey, and Toppin has to be the favorite in Vegas, right? I’m salivating over this team being another squad equipped to dominate Akron’s only son.
7. I love Nick Nurse and the entire Toronto Raptors organization. Ujiri might be a top five executive of all-time, folks. The Kawhi trade + the Nurse hire + drafting Spicy P, VanVleet, Anouby, and Boucher makes one insanely scorching executive hot streak. Celtics v. Raptors in the second round is gonna be a dog fight – Tatum lining up against Siakam to determine best wing in the east has me drooling.
8. I love Charles Barkley’s hatred of the Rockets…”team full of munchkins.”
9. I love the battle for the 8th seed in the West. The Grizzlies, Pelicans, and Kings all have incredible young cores that are jockeying for invaluable post-season experience. Hopefully Jaren Jackson and Brandon Clarke (Grizz) and Richaun Holmes and Marvin Bagley (Kings) get healthy for the stretch run. I didn’t forget Portland – the Blazers don’t have a shot in hell to make the playoffs, and we’ll get into that shortly.
10. I love Giannis and the Lopez Twins setting the tone the Bucks via WWE inspired pre-game antics.
Shit like this makes me think they aren’t as fatally flawed as they might be.
Here’s where it gets fun, mafuckas! Preemo, Nore, and Blaq Poet – set it off!!
I loathe everything about JamesHarden as a person, as a player, and as a microcosm of our nation’s general insanity. This deserves it’s own blog, kids. It really, really does. In lieu of that happening right now, just watch this compilation of the self-proclaimed MVP doing non-MVP things:
2. I despise Doris Burke’s steadfast commitment to contradicting herself, fellating LeBron, and never delivering anything insightful via her horrfiic commentary. HEY DORIS! SHUT THE FUCK UP, K?!? LEBRON ISN’T IN THE DISUCSSION FOR MVP WITH GIANNIS. THIS IS NOT A NARRATIVE WORTH EXPLORING. IT’S NOT A DOOR TO BE LEFT OPEN. YOU WANT ME TO SHOW YOU WHY? HERE’S GIANNIS’ SEASON COMPARED TO LEBRON’S (keep in mind the Bucks thrashed the Lakers H2H and are 53-9 next to LA’s 47-13).
Doesn’t take a math major to determine who’s having the better statistical season, right? Here’s the kicker though, Doris. Bron might not be the most valuable Laker! His “best teammate” is the third best player when using advanced stats in NBA history! Let’s look at Brow v. Khris Middleton for good measure, Doris:
You know what grinds my gears, fellow travelers? You see the stats WS & WS/48? That means “win shares” and “win shares per 48 minutes.” It’s essentially how much an individual has contributed to his team winning games this season. That sounds like a way to determine a player’s “value” on their respective team, right? It appears as if the Unibrow is rocking around at 9.9 WS and .264 WS/48…wait, what? That’s more than LeBron’s 8.8 WS and .212 WS/48?!?!? RIDDLE ME THIS, DORIS! HOW THE FUCK IS HE THE MOST VALUABLE PLAYER IN THE LEAGUE WHEN HIS TEAMMATE IS WINNING MORE GAMES FOR THE LAKERS THAN HE IS??!??!? God damn it, I hate her.
(BTW – Giannis is leading the league with 10.3 WS and .287 WS/48)
3. I hate Trae Young’s drowned rat face, but I hate his ridiculous hype machine even more. I guess it’s a hot take to think Trae Young is vastly overrated. If it is, consider me Scalding Smails. I’m going even further with this – Trae Young will NEVER make the playoffs as a team’s best player. You know how I know this? Because he’s never been a winner before…at any level. He’s 38-97 in his two NBA seasons. He lost to a garbage Rhode Island team in the first round of the NCAA tourney at Oklahoma. He never won a state title in high school, people! This clip sums up everything about Trae Young in a swift two minutes:
4. I hate that Dame Lillard is going to miss the playoffs because the Blazers acquired + empowered Carmelo Anthony.
Admittedly, he’s been better as Blazer than a Rocket. But that’s like saying gonorrhea is better than herpes. Here’s his shooting numbers at a glance:
What I want you to take away is that he’s averaging the third most attempts on the team despite ranking 15 out of 18 in shooting percentages / efficiency. He’s also preventing young players like Simons, Little, and Trent from truly developing. I hate Carmelo, and I hope Dame does too.
5. I’m angry and hateful that injuries have not allowed to see the Pacers play to their potential. Oladipo missed half the year and has looked beyond rusty upon returning. Brogdon has been banged up all season. Lamb is done for the year. Turner can’t consitently stay on the court. Their one constant force, Damontas Sabonis, is having his breakout year drift into the NBA ether due to his team’s pseudo irrelevance. And that’s a damn shame.
That’s enough hate…here are my honorable mention love’s to end this obscenely long blog on a positive note.
Chris Paul’s remarkable season in OKC – CP was an All Star and is doing his thing via true excellence as a leader.
Ja Morant trying to collect All Star bodies any chance he can – he’s gonna dunk on an All NBA guy soon. My bet is Gobert.
Bam Adebayo’s emergence as a legitimate stud.
Refering to Kyrie Irving as “the butterfly catcher” with ATrain. Never gets old.
PBM has left the building. Tip your servers, family.