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The Rich Eisen Show Basketball Podcast S2 E8. Eastern & Western Conference standings, MVP Debate, Finals predictions

The Rich Eisen Show / Rich Eisen
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March 8, 2023 6:05 pm

The Rich Eisen Show Basketball Podcast S2 E8. Eastern & Western Conference standings, MVP Debate, Finals predictions

The Rich Eisen Show / Rich Eisen

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March 8, 2023 6:05 pm

The Rich Eisen Show's Chris Brockman, TJ Jefferson, and Adam Chudwin break down the latest from the NBA.

00:00- Eastern Conference/ MVP talk

20:08- Western Conference talk

Follow the guys here: Twitter: @chrisbrockman, @toojiggy, @achudwin Instagram: @brockshady, @tjjefferson, @achudwin

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Hey, what's up, everybody? Welcome back. It's the Rich Eisen Show basketball podcast here on a Wednesday.

It's March 8th. We're winding down the NBA season. Join by the guys. T.J., Adam, what's up, fellas? What's going on, guys? Everything good?

What's up, boys? All is well. All is well.

Yeah, all is well in your world. The Sixers are awesome. They're playing great.

Yeah, that's awesome. Yeah, my team, not so much. Adam T, your team. We're done. Is your team even still playing best? I don't even watch. We're done. You're not even in the play-in anymore.

Nope. This team's garbage. And we won't get a top five pick either. Don't get me started, please, Chris. Don't get me started. You haven't tanked good enough. We haven't tanked good enough. That is the whole point of this podcast is to get someone started.

We are at the point of... Let Adam know, Adam. Let the people know what team you're talking about. I am a Chicago Bulls fan.

If you guys don't know, massive Chicago Bulls fan. This team is in the middle of nowhere. Not bad enough to get a top three lottery pick. Not good enough to even make the playoffs. This is a complete, absolute failure.

29 and 36. Take away... Just rebuild this whole team. Trade DeMar DeRozan. I like DeMar DeRozan, but you need to get rid of him. You need to get rid of Zach LaVine if possible. Just pray that we get a superstar next year. Alonzo Ball. This guy might never return. He might just be in Chino Hills the rest of his life, chilling with LaVar. So Adam, are you saying they should build the team around OG Pat Bev?

Because that's what it sounds like, you're saying. By the way, all the Chicago Bulls social media feeds were acting like Patrick Beverly as Derrick Rose when he came back to the Bulls. They're like, Shytown's son is finally coming back. Oh, he's here.

It's the return of our favorite player. Wait, he's from Chicago? He's from Chicago. He went to Marshall High School, which was the same high school where Arthur Agee went in the movie Hoop Dreams, which is just a random fact. And my grandpa Lester Ziff, R.I.P., he played high school basketball there in the thirties. Shout out grandpa Lester. When it was all Jewish people. My grandpa actually led them, I think, downstate. What was the average in like eight a game back then?

I'd say like ten and seven maybe. Pat Bev, where are your grandpa's number? Because that would be incredible. It is pretty crazy that Pat Bev and my grandpa Lester Ziff went to the same high school together. That's amazing. But the Bulls, all the Bulls people were acting like he's going to save the team. It's like, no, he's a good role player.

And if you're lucky, you'll get a celebration from him when you make the playoffs like you did with Minnesota. So that's where I'm at. I'm done with this team. I'm just done. I can't do it. Yeah.

I can't blame you. Like you said, not, not bad enough to get in the top and maybe make some splash in the victor sweepstakes, but not good enough in a league where sixties, two thirds of the league make the playoffs. Now with the play in Bulls, the 11th seed in the east right now, two games back of the wizards. But look, it's all about Philadelphia right now. TJ, your two teams actually are playing a well, the signal, the Clippers are going off to a rough start to the back half of the year, but they had a huge win the other night. Sixers though.

Oh my God. I am legit afraid that they're going to pass Boston for the two seed and we're going to have to go on the road to Philadelphia, possibly in the second round. It's a good chance that it happened. You know, the Sixers are seven and three, the last 10. And you know, the big game was stopping the Bucks winning streak right on Saturday. Was that Friday or Saturday? I think it was Saturday. I'm sorry. I think I'd be talking the other day.

I said Friday. That was a big game for the Sixers down 15 at one point for them to come back and, and beat the Bucks who were just on such a roll. They were on a roll, man.

They won what? 16, 17 in a row. Yeah. Four. I think it was 14, 14 in a row. Okay.

My numbers are off. But yeah, you know, you have harden one game scoring 38 points and looking like the James Harden that we were talking about two weeks ago. And in the very next game, he's like, okay, well, let me show what else I can do. Then he drops 20 dimes. It's like, man, I we're playing very well right now.

And then bead, you know, I'm going to continue to pound this table. I know everyone is giving Joker the props because he's averaging a triple double. But what MB does offensively, what he does defensively. I just can't believe this man isn't getting more respect, guys. I got to be honest. And I know I'm a fan and maybe I'm looking at from like that the rose colored fan glasses. So I allow you guys to talk a little bit more about it. But the man's the most dominant player in the league.

Well, I mean, you know, you're honest is still in the league. I understand. But I don't know. MB just doesn't seem to be getting that love, guys.

And I don't get it. Yeah, Joker. I mean, Joker is dominant, though. What he does and what he does for that team, the offense runs through him. He seems like he's like the point center at him. And like, you know, and bead kind of relies on other people to get him the ball. But when he does get the ball, dude, he is just an absolute force. It's like kind of crazy that his MVP odds.

Let's see. Joker is minus 400 right now to win MVP. That is basically a lock with 17, 18 games left in the regular season, something like that. And bead plus 450 Yanis eight to one.

And then it goes all the way up to Tatum. Thirty five to one. Luca. Fifty to one. John Marant.

Those are done. Two hundred and fifty to one. Willard.

Two hundred fifty to one. It's crazy. Well, a lot of people online are saying that they think, you know, and beat should have won probably last year. Right. And that joke, it's shouldn't win three MVPs, but that this is actually his best year out of all the three years if he won MVP three straight years. So it's kind of weird because, you know, I remember back in the nineties, at least with Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley and Carl Malone won MVPs simply because they would not want to give it to Michael Jordan so many years in a row. Yeah. Think how many MVPs LeBron should have. Yeah. And so I don't know if if they're going to do that anymore, because to me right now they have the Denver Nuggets have the best record in the league.

Right. And Jokic is averaging a triple double. So it would be hard not to give him the MVP. This is the year he deserves it. This is the year that he deserves it. But also, TJ, like you can make the argument that MB has deserved it in the last couple of years.

So maybe you just give it to him this year. But the problem is they're not the number one seed yet. And so that's what we've talked about on the show. I think we I think I said the same thing two weeks ago when we did an episode like if Philly does get the one seed, how is it not and be MVP? I think that's the key to him winning MVP is if they're the number one seed in the east.

Without that, I don't think it happens. What do you think, TJ? At this point, I'm just I said I'm going to pound the table.

I'm going to keep up hope. But I feel like the decision has already been made. The script's already been out. Like Joker is going to win MVP again.

And then, you know, I I don't know. I hope they to me, the best thing would be those two getting a chance to go heads up and that would only be in the finals. And then we get to see one against the other. Let's see who the better players. But as of now, I just I'm resigned to the fact that, you know, Joker is going to win MVP, despite the fact that and be, you know, leading the league and scoring right now.

You know, it seems like it's already done. You've probably paid closer attention to this. And maybe we have, TJ, but when Philly has played Denver, how have those gone? Hasn't been dominated that matchup? Have they even playing the game against each other?

Yeah. Let me give you the last that the last time they played, because it was I feel like it wasn't that long ago and it was a nationally televised game. It was national televised game. The Sixers won one twenty six to one nineteen and beat had forty seven points. How many rebounds did he have? He had forty seven and eighteen five assists, three steals, two blocks.

Whereas Joker had Joker has twenty four, twenty four, eight, nine, eight and nine. No steals, two blocks, seven turnovers. Well, you know, he's running the he's running the point. Then again, Embiid had six turnovers too.

But I mean, forty seven to twenty four that. Well, you want me to tell you there and you won the game. Yeah. And was that their only time? Because usually across conference they play twice. Yeah, they do play twice. I just knew that was the most recent.

That was the most recent. It's interesting. I'm scrolling to and we actually know they play they play coming up. Yeah. OK, so they.

Yeah. March twenty seventh on a Monday. Just go ahead and circle that one on that calendar because I guarantee you, Joelle Embiid will not play the game before that just to make sure there's no way he's going to miss that game. That could actually legit be for MVP, because that's let's see. There are only like eight games after after that to finish the regular season. That's an important stretch for Philly, not against Eastern Conference teams, but they're at Golden State, at Phoenix, at Denver, kind of the last West Coast trip of the year for Philadelphia before they finish with some monster conference games.

Toronto, Milwaukee, Boston, Miami, and Brooklyn would have been on there. But now. Right. Right. Now, I feel like Embiid will take it way more personally just because he hasn't won before.

Whereas I feel this is one twice already. So I think Embiid will want to prove a point that he is the MVP this year, no matter what people say. And by the way, that's going to be a good stretch for him, because the game before that, on Sunday, the 25th, the Sixers played the Suns. That's going to be a big game against another formidable center. So he's going to have Embiid against Aten, and then he's going to get a day off. And then on the Monday, they get Denver.

And then on the Wednesday, there's Dallas. So, you know, that mid-March, those three games, those are really big games. You said, Chris, a big run stretch for the Sixers, right? Yeah, that's a huge stretch to kind of finish the year for Philadelphia, especially if they want to get to the one seed, which is not impossible. I mean, they're four back of, they're four back of Milwaukee right now. They're one and a half back of Boston. Boston's lost three in a row.

Just absolute gut-wrenching game. Adam, Chris is ready to just cut Grant Williams just right. First off, when you, I thought you liked him, baby. I do like him. He's had a really good year. Look, he really stepped up this year because Danilo Gallinari was supposed to be in that spot of the guy off the bench, stay in the corner, hit threes, give me some rebounds, play a little defense. And now Grant has really stepped up. He's had a really good season.

He's probably made himself a good amount of money this offseason coming up. But with a game like that, a division get, you know, a conference game against a team like Cleveland, that's gotten her number a few times this year and you're on the road and you get fouled with 0.9 seconds left and you look at the other team's best player and you say, yeah, I'm gonna make both. Well then you better make both! Like, and it's tied, you better at least make one. So we win the game.

That's really important. They weren't even close. Did you see the shots? They weren't even close. I mean, the front rim the first one. Pressure builds diamonds and also pressure bust pipes.

It was awful. Cut on the spot. So would you have cut, let's say Shaq back in the day if he missed two? Different type of player.

Not the same. And it's, Grant Williams is still an important part of your squad. But you're a bench guy.

If you're a role player and you say something stupid like that, you better come through. Listen, it's the regular season, Chris. If he does this in a playoffs, it's a different story. Yes, but it's a regular season here with like 20 games to go where we're kind of spiraling a little bit and we need to stop the bleeding. And you do it in a tough road environment like Cleveland. Like Cleveland's been a really good team this year. They've played us really tough.

We haven't really figured out their number and they seem to have ours. That's a chance to steal a game, especially when Tatum was out. Tatum didn't play because it was the second game of back to back. Jalen Brown had a nice night. No Al Horford. Yeah.

Blake Griffin had to start. And so you got to go out there. You got to win that. Dude, I'm a make both.

You're you're cut. I respect the confidence that was talking trash to him. So what was he supposed to say? Like, I don't think I got this in me. Of course you do. You get up there, you make both, then you look at him and you wink and you go home like you know what I mean?

He just like Donovan Mitchell completely like Jedi mind trick. The mailman don't deliver on Sunday, man. It has hip in the car. I'm alone. It happens. Chris, I feel like you're losing faith in the Celtics right now. I kind of am.

Why the really rough stretch, man? They just do dumb things. They play so dumb. After last year, they basically gave away the NBA finals because they couldn't hold on to the basketball.

And you think they'd clean that up knowing that was an issue. Clean it up this year. Play a little bit smarter.

Nope. Twenty two turnovers against the Knicks in a game that you cannot lose. They're without Jayla Brunson. You're at home and you just give that game away.

They're still doing dumb crap. And it's so frustrating. And Tatum, for as great as he is first team all NBA last year, he might be that again this year. Finish around the rim and stop settling for step back threes. Like I bet I want to curse so bad. Like it's so frustrating because this guy is so close to being on the precipice of making the MVP leap and being the best player on a team that wins a championship. And it's like you want it so bad for this guy. And it's right there.

Just take it. You are right about the sloppy play in the turnovers that will come to bite them in the playoffs. It'll happen again against the Philadelphia against any formidable team.

You can't do that. And you're giving away these games where you've had the last three games. They've lost three in a row. They've had 15 plus point leads in all three games. Can't blow that, obviously. Six of the next seven.

Thank you, Mike. Six of the next seven on the road. That's what you got to do in that stretch.

So suddenly maybe you drop three or four of those and suddenly now you're three and seven in your last 10. And you've given away already gave away the one seed. You've been the one seed most of the season.

Gave that away to Milwaukee. Now you're going to give away the two seed now, like what we talked about with four with Brian Windhorst on the big show, Milwaukee, Boston, Philly. OK, one of those teams is not making the conference finals.

Just think about that. How good those teams are. Now it's looking like it's going to be you because you're going to have to go on the road to Philadelphia, even though Boston has kind of owned Philadelphia in the last few years in the playoffs. But still, not this year, not the way James Harden's playing, not the way Tyrese Maxey has really stepped up. Tobias Harris, 20 a night.

I know he didn't play last night, but he's like 16 at night. Man, come on. These are really important games.

Can't be given these away. It definitely feels like. The Sixers are on their way up in the Celtics are kind of like middling and like could go down and really quickly after such a great regular season compared to last year where it was like the first three months for what is his team doing? And then they just took off at the year and like just rocketed to the finals.

Well, we saw here it's going in the other direction. We talk about how they just lost to Cleveland. Do you guys think that the Cavs are a legit contender to win the East? Could they do it this year? Because I've I'm watching that team and they're very good. They're very young. That's the problem.

They're very, very young. But you have Donovan Mitchell, who is a superstar. He is a superstar. And then you have the number two guy in Garland, who's a legit All-Star player.

Number two. So would you guys be shocked if the Cleveland Cavaliers won the East? Yes. Yes. One thousand percent would be a good squad, but I would be shocked if this squad really tough.

Evan Evan Mobley is obviously awesome. I would actually just watching them play the last few games. I am more afraid of the Knicks. No, really?

Yeah. Knicks the last couple months have been on. I mean, I know they lost last night at home to Charlotte, really bad loss, but they're nine game winning streak was really, really impressive. They've looked good. They have a great fan base, of course, on Twitter.

You hear about it nonstop. Me personally, I still believe that the Knicks are pretenders went to your high school. He's at Stevenson high school and they've played without him and they've played pretty well about him, which is a good sign, but he's obviously the key to their offense.

The Knicks have a good squad. Julius Randall, all star quickly. He's looked really good.

Quickly. His game kind of reminds me of, of maxi a little bit. I was thinking the same thing about that.

Yeah. He's like a guy that you could bring up. He's not the favorite to be six man of the year. Malcolm Brogdon was kind of the favorite all year, but he's been banged up the last couple of weeks and quickly has really come on, especially during that win streak had what, 38 against Boston kind of keyed that win. And then of course you have RJ Barrett, right? They've got a good team, but I just don't think they're good enough though. They don't have, they don't have like Jalen Brunson is their best player, right? And he's a, he's an all star borderline all star level talent, but they don't have, and then obviously, well, maybe Randall's better.

It's it's, it depends on who you, who you listen to, but either way, there's not that one superstar. Whereas the bucks have Giannis, the Sixers have Embiid and, and hardened to a degree. And then of course the Celtics have Tatum and the Knicks don't really have that type of player.

Well, of course there too, some of Brunson and Randall are, you know, are behind Giannis and Middleton and hardening Embiid and Jalen and Brown and Tatum. But I mean, if we're just talking about among the teams, Cleveland, New York, Miami, who can make a run here? I mean, the Knicks got three guys and get you 20 at night right there. So I think the Knicks would be more likely to kind of score an upset. I mean, right now, if the playoffs started, it's Cleveland and New York in the first round. And I think I would bet, I would bet Knicks there to come out of that.

I think I'd go Cleveland. That'd be a good series. That would be fun. That's going to be a good one. You have Donovan Mitchell. He's from New York going back there to play the Knicks in the playoffs.

This first season in the Eastern Conference, that would be a lot of fun. That's a nice story. Isn't it crazy? Like Mitchell had 71 in a game and we almost forgot about it. We don't really talk about it.

We want to know why it was the same night as the DeMar Hamlins. Yeah, that's true. Which is, you know, that kind of took over the whole sports world, kind of took a backseat.

71 points in a game. Think about that. But we had two guys score over, you know, that you get Dame doing it, too. So we talked about that a little bit more.

But you're right. Unfortunately for, you know, Donovan, his his game got lost in that tragic situation that happened in Buffalo. But you got to give the guys props, man. 71 points is no small feat. He's been awesome. And him going there, I didn't know how that was going to be. Yeah. Even it's just been kind of an afterthought since LeBron left the last few seasons.

And you're just not wondering what's going on there. But Evan Mobley has come in. He's developed really, really big man in this league. Just a walking double double. Garland is awesome. They had Colin Sexton got rid of him.

Bring in Donovan Mitchell. Oh, my goodness. Yeah. The cab is low key. That's on squad.

Low key. Good squad. Can they make a run, though?

No, probably not. I mean, one of the big three, I think, is coming out of the east. I would say almost 90 percent sure that it's going to be the Milwaukee, Boston or Philly. But right now, at this point, Philly trending up, Milwaukee trending up, Boston kind of turning in the wrong direction. So with this huge road stretch coming up, curious to see how my team responds and if they can kind of right the ship a little bit.

I'm definitely in panic mode. So that's not helping the West. I mean, look, Denver has been running away with everything. Seven and a half game lead. So they're locked into the one seed, you know, barring an absolute disaster from there, though, guys. I mean, Sacramento. God, give them so much credit.

Came out of nowhere. Everyone thought 30 game 40. Maybe they'll fall. No, they haven't faltered.

Thirty eight and twenty six. Highest scoring team in the league. So, so impressive. Memphis with the Joss stuff is now trending in the wrong direction. So here comes Phoenix. Dallas looks like they're starting to figure it out. Golden State. That's your top six. And then from there, I mean, from five all the way to the Thunder and Portland, the first two teams out of the play in two and a half games separate five from twelve. Three games separates five from thirteen in the West. It is going to be the craziest finish ever.

How do you how do you see this kind of shaken out? I've never seen anything like this before. It's ever it's been all the time I've watched the NBA.

This is unbelievable. You've got the Lakers who people thought would fall apart when LeBron left. All of a sudden they're looking pretty nice now as Anthony Davis took over the game last night. I don't know if you guys watched it, but he was MVP chance.

He was awesome. Awesome. They're six into the last eight.

This is a nightmare for me personally. OK, I thought we were I thought we were reading the last rights. I thought we were putting them to bed. And no, I thought as soon as the Clippers made those those trades that they'd start winning a bunch of games that went the opposite direction. They started losing every single season starts right now. We have Clippers, Lakers play in TJ.

Well, I was just looking at Lakers. Let's go. Let's go game for it all. Oh, my God. Amazing.

Well, I mean, the fact of the matter is and I don't have this number in front of me right now. I have to look it up. But the Clippers have won like eight in a row or something.

Yeah. Some ridiculous stretch that we are going to get the exact stat here. But but Adam, to your point, I mean, just the log jam in the West is just so amazing. Utah is sitting at 13, but they're a half game back of Portland, Oklahoma City and the Pelicans. The Pelicans currently at 10. They have the tiebreaker of Oklahoma City in Portland. They're a half game back. New Orleans of the Lakers, who is nine right now, a game and a half behind the Clippers who are tied with the Timberwolves. The Wolves have the tiebreak. That's your play in Golden State is just like the weirdest team in the league this year. I can't understand them.

Twenty seven seven at home, seven and twenty five on the road. Steph is back and they lose to the Lakers on Sunday. Like Kyrie and Luca are now scoring like crazy and they're starting to win games. Could they be a threat?

I don't know. The cool thing about the play in games this year is you will be guaranteed in the West to see superstars like legit superstars playing against each other. That's going to be fun. That's why probably the league wanted to implement the play in games for this type of situation when you get to see superstar level talents play against each other and winner take all. And the Clippers are 10 and no against the Lakers in their last 10 against them. So just by the way, that Clipper game against Memphis was so important.

I don't know if you guys saw that game. Oh yeah. You said that.

I went to Minnesota. I'm sorry. Not Memphis.

Okay. But anyway, yeah, the Memphis game because the Clippers went up over 50 points in the third quarter to Memphis. They're down by like 15, I think, to start that. And they'd lost five in a row. I said they have to win this game. If they don't win this game, it's over. And they figured it out. And I think that the Clippers will be able to to build from that game and hopefully gain some confidence.

They have another game tonight against the Raptors, which they should win. But this is going out to the wire. So this is this is so much fun now. Yeah. And it's like every game's important. You're not going to see guys sitting out. You're going to see guys really pushing it because especially the West is seeding matters. Seeding matters. Absolutely.

Like right now you'd have Memphis play Golden State, Sacramento plays whoever comes out of this out of the play in like what if what if Zion suddenly comes back and the Pelicans knock out the Timberwolves and then take out Sacramento in the first round? I wouldn't be sure. Absolutely. Positive for sure. This could happen.

And like you said, Adam, super duper stars in the playing tournament and Carl Anthony towns, Kawhi, Paul George, LeBron, Anthony Davis, Zion and B.I. right now in the play. Why come on? What? That's crazy. And that's just right now. That's right now.

It's time in two weeks from now. Let's check back in this whole set of 13 is going to be completely different, I bet. In two weeks from now, suddenly you could get Steph and Clay and Draymond in the play in play in like you could have Luca and Kyrie in the play. You could have you could have Damian Lillard.

Lillard could be anything. Let's just see how many road games Golden State has coming up, because as we know, they stink on the road. So one, two, three, four, five, six, seven. They got like eight road games left, which are probably going to lose just because that's what they do on the road.

At least one in seven to six. So this is coming down to the wire, fellas. Yeah, it's coming down to the wire.

It's going to be so, so exciting. So I threw out an overreaction Monday on the big show this week. I said Phoenix to the NBA finals in 16 games or less.

Crazy. And you're not talking the 16 games it takes to win a title, you know, I mean, 16 games as a team, three playoff series. That's going 12 and four at the at the most 12 and four at the most.

Losing two playoff game, losing four playoff games in three rounds at most. I think Phoenix is about to be a juggernaut and they might win the NBA title. I agree.

I don't I don't think that's an overreaction. I can completely see that happening. I watched that Phoenix Dallas game the other day and they looked good. Booker Booker and Duran cancel looks very, very good together for years. And I also love that game because I liked the beef between Luca and Devin Booker.

That's fun. And I really hope that happens in the playoffs, by the way. I really hope somehow the Mavericks play the sun stole their soul last year.

Yeah. So it would only be fitting if the sun's got revenge with Katie on their team this year, but I don't think that's an overreaction right now. The sons are the team in the West, even, even over Denver right now, they just have the most talent with with Katie. You have a number one superstar guy who's won it all.

And as much as I like Jokic, I still would rather have Katie and my team in the playoffs if he's healthy. Also. Yeah. I was just thinking that do they have the most talent and guys you trust?

Yeah. Because, you know, Denver lost the first round last year. They think they made the conference finals a year before, but they've had guys injured.

They're coming back. Michael Porter Jr. You know, how healthy is he really? Jamal Murray has really played well. I know because T.J. has him in fantasy. He's been playing really well recently.

But when you just look at. Devin Booker has scored 70 at a game in the NBA. Kevin Durant is the top 10 player all time. Chris Paul is maybe the greatest point guard of all time.

Man, that's so much. I mean, they gave up a lot. They really don't have a deep bench anymore. They gave up all of their good role players and guys who can go off. Mikhail Bridges, Adam Johnson.

They're all in Brooklyn now. And that's one thing you got to. First of all, I take umbrage of two of the things you said there, but we'll get back to that. It's the other thing you think about, like Chris Paul being the best point. You had this chemistry and that's my old thing. Now, we know that they can score, but defensively, like how old you know, there's a lot that's going to go on when you know, when you know each other and you know, OK, I know that this guy, he has a problem sliding over to this side. So I'm going to you know, I'm going to accommodate him. I'm going to you know, there's just a lot that goes on defensively.

Are they going to have the time to kind of mesh? Because you know, they can score. That's going to be easy. But if it were just scoring points, you know, basketball be a completely different game. You got to go and stop the other team. Got to stop the other team. Don't know if Phoenix can do that. But real quick, can they outscore teams? Sure.

Yeah, sure. You said Durant top 10 of all time. I don't know about that.

And Chris Paul, all time greatest point guard. Definitely not the case. I said maybe.

Yeah, but I don't think it was a maybe second. OK, he's second. Now, I think most people say Hall of Fame regardless. Second, Magic Johnson is the greatest point guard to ever play basketball.

A lot of people are trying to push staff narrative. I'll give Steph number two. I came to say Chris Paul's better than Isaiah Thomas. But that's maybe that's a discussion for another day.

More accomplished statistically, not the rings, obviously. That is a good conversation. That's a good off season.

But am I crazy? So I think we gave our predictions a while ago. I said Phoenix, Boston. I don't feel so great about Boston, but I feel really good about Phoenix. You guys want to change your picks?

I still like my revisiting this every couple of weeks. Yeah, a couple of weeks ago I said this. I said Phoenix in Milwaukee and and that's what I still believe. Yeah, I think that's I can't remember what my pick was.

I'm sure it was. I don't even remember. I remember who I picked.

What do you have now? I'm going to go Denver and Philly. I just I don't know if I believe in Denver, man.

It's crazy. Nobody really believes in Denver. And watch them just steamroll everyone. It's very possible because they're very fundamental, you know, in that and that's I don't want to put them on this level, but kind of like you remember watching the Spurs when that machine was clicking and it was just like every pass, like they made the right play every play every time down the court. And it kind of seems like the Nuggets have a little bit of that in them. But you got to see, man, when the playoffs come, if they got that dog in them, different base, you know, it's a different base. If I had to pick right now. Maybe I'd go Phoenix, Milwaukee. Seems like they're the two best teams, but I just don't.

Not sure. This is going to come down to the wire, guys. I'm here for it.

It's going to be fun. We just disrespecting Joker. He's so good.

I think to a point, he's so good is game, you know, back in the day. Right. I remember a friend of mine. He was younger. He was telling me how he didn't like Tim Duncan. Right.

This early. And I'm like, why? He just doesn't talk and he's boring. And I had to explain to him, though, do you understand how good he is at everything basketball wise, just because he's not making sports center highlights? That doesn't mean he's not the best player out there. So I think you have to say the same thing with Joker.

Look, he's never going to go coast to coast as a speed demon, you know, but his game is very efficient and very fundamentally sound. And this team, you're right, Brahmin. Maybe we might be sleeping on them. It's never nuggets. If I went to sleep today and then didn't wake up until game one of the NBA finals and I said, hey, what's the finals? And you said the Nuggets. I don't think I'd go what? No way.

You'd be like, yeah, that makes sense. They've been one of the top three teams all year. Yeah. So and people talk about how how Jokic isn't necessarily exciting to watch. To me, he's one of my favorite people in the league to watch because his passing is he's one of the best passes to me. He's the best big man pastor of all time. And he's one of the greatest pastors of any position in NBA history. He's special to watch. And if you really love the game and you love watching the nuances of the game, then you watch Jokic and you admire what he does every single game.

It's pretty much exactly what I was saying about the Tim Duncan thing. It's not flashy. It's not highlight. But everything is just right. They do everything right. Every decision.

Yep. You know, yeah, it I'm looking forward to this, man. This is when the season is starting to heat up.

That's when, you know, you got to say it with your chest and you got to first of all, you got to be available to take all your time. And that's why I kept saying the rich when he would complain about Kawhi missing back to back. So I'm like, I don't care about a healthy Kawhi in October. I need a healthy Kawhi in April, May, June.

And, you know, now it's like now these guys are going to maybe stop with this load management. They're going to stop taking games off and they're going to go out there and try to ball. And the thing is, you look at Kawhi's game logs for the last basically since the new year started since it's been January. It's unbelievable.

Like thirty every night. And so, Adam, you weren't part of this conversation because Chris and I were having this. But after the game against the what was it, the Timberwolves game or what? The Kings?

I'm sorry. The one hundred when he had forty four hundred thirty game forty four for Brockman. And he kind of laughed at me. I said, Kawhi Leonard is a top ten player in the top five in the top five. And you said he's not top five in the West. And my point being, if you look at everything that you say, this is what it takes to be a good basketball player, the skill set. I don't know how if you watch Kawhi Leonard and watch this man on the basketball court, I don't know how you can say any. There are six guys who are more talented at the game of basketball today than him. I just don't see it. This guy's skill set is unbelievable.

Everything he can do on the basketball court. You're going to have a hard time telling me that there's five guys that you would take over him. I remember to win a tie. I remember you guys talking about that. And then I made up the point.

Maybe we adjust the argument. Which players would you want to have on your team going into the playoffs? And I agree with you in terms of if it's that argument that there's not five other better players that I'd rather have than Kawhi Leonard going into the playoffs as long as he's healthy. So for sure, scoring defense like that was my argument. When you and I talked about Kawhi and Luca, I was like, the thing about Lucas, he's never going to be as good on D as Kawhi because there's very few people in the world that play defense like Kawhi Leonard.

So when you take his whole bag, that whole skill set, he's super duper elite. I'm writing down two top fives that we're going to do right before the playoffs start. Top five guys you want heading into the playoffs and then top five.

This is a great life first take and I love these. TJ, you hate them. Top five guys under the most pressure. For the big show? No, we're going to do this on this show. OK. Right before the playoffs. So our kind of a playoff preview.

All right. These are two of the top fives we can do. We could do a whole playoff preview show that's just top five. We're doing these two at the very least. Write them down right now. Anybody who's listening, what do you guys want us to talk about before the playoffs?

Give us some suggestions in the comments. So when you guys think about this, you know, a quote came out from Paul George where he essentially said he had to really take a look at himself and understand and realize that he wasn't good enough to be the number one number one on the call sheet. I saw that as a championship team. And of course, you know, people are going to say this, that and the third about it. For me, I thought it was very commendable and respectable for him to come out and say, like, look, man, I realize that I'm this good, but I'm not good enough to do this alone.

I'm not good enough to be the one. How did you guys feel about that comment? I respect that, man. I got to say, I respect that.

Sometimes you got to take along a good hard look in the mirror and assess your career and where you're at and the moment and what's capable and acceptable and possible in front of you. And he did and said, look, I need to be a one B or even a two for my team to win a title. And you got to applaud that. Got to applaud the George's again when we talk. George is awesome. I don't think there's your whole thing, but I don't think there's 20 better players in the NBA.

You can make a real good case. He's top 20 top 25 in the league and really, you know, really, really good player. Top level player.

Twenty four, six and six a night. And by the way, that's coming back from that horrible broken leg that he suffered. So you got to imagine where this guy's game B had that basketball had that stanchion been five feet further back when he ran into it and snapped his leg in half like a different Paul George. I like I like how you guys said some it's I completely agree that the fact that the NBA, the top players in the NBA have they all have massive egos because you have to have a massive ego to come. Exactly. And so for him to be able to still have the ego, but still step back and say, well, if I actually really want to win a championship, which clearly he does for him to admit that if I want to win a championship, I'm going to be brutally honest and say to myself, I can't win it is the number one guy. That's totally respectable. Not respect him even more than somebody who would say like, oh, no, I'm the number one guy when they're clearly right.

You know, not so respect to Paul George for being honest and still being an awesome Hall of Fame player. No doubt. Yeah, it's going to be wild. It's going to be wild. Like I said, there's like there's like what do we got a month left to the regular season and then the two and a half month wild ride. That's the NBA playoffs. Buckle up people. It's going to be great.

All right. That's this week's show. We might be back next week. We might not. We might be back in two weeks.

Most likely more top fives, more checking out where everything stands in the NBA. We love you guys. Thanks for watching. Thanks for listening and tuning in. Again, comments, leave some comments. What you want to hear is talk about as we get ready for the NBA playoffs.

Adam, T.J., love you guys. See you next week. All right. Take care. Peace.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-08 20:16:51 / 2023-03-08 20:34:13 / 17

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