For the better part of the last week the Celtics and Clippers attempted to the point of exhaustion to work out a trade that would send Celtics head coach Doc Rivers and forward Kevin Garnett to the Clippers. Trying to get Rivers and Garnett was reportedly an attempt by the Clippers to appease soon-to-be free agent point guard Chris Paul, who wants to be coached by Rivers. But, with the deal seemingly dead after a report on Friday that Rivers informed the Clippers that he is no longer a candidate, it appears the possibility of Paul being coached by Rivers won’t be happening anytime soon.
Shortly after the Boston Celtics were eliminated from the 2013 NBA playoffs, ESPN sports personality Steven A. Smith stated on the network’s program First Take that his sources told him the Los Angeles Clippers wanted to work with the Celtics to potentially send Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and head coach Doc Rivers to the Clippers in exchange for forward Blake Griffin and other Clipper players. Smith’s proclamation was widely dismissed at the time by everyone in sports journalism. Furthermore, Celtics’ President of Operations Danny Ainge stated May 9th on WEEI’s Silk & Holley show that the rumor was “silly”.
However, fast forward to the middle of June and Smith’s proclamation doesn’t sound so silly anymore due to the lack of information coming from the Celtics regarding if Rivers wants to finish out his contract as head coach and their plans for Pierce and Garnett next season. Smith’s assertion has become the foundation of much speculation in sports media. Stories have begun to pop up daily on websites such as ESPN, Yahoo, Boston Herald, and the Boston Globe that the Clippers and Celtics are looking to do exactly what Smith stated they were attempting to do in May.
The San Antonio Spurs won the franchise’s fifth Western Conference championship Monday night by sweeping the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2013 Western Conference Finals. As a result of this victory, they have earned the right to play in the NBA Finals for the League’s 2013 championship.
Although, the Grizzlies did compete in this series, with two games being decided in overtime, they were unable to breakdown the Spurs at either end of the court. The Spurs were consistently in control of this series and fended off every challenge from the Grizzlies. Here are four observations explaining how they did it.
Controlled the paint
Tim Duncan was able to assert himself on both ends of the floor. Offensively, he could get any shot he wanted and made timely baskets that were crucial to the Spurs winning games two and three. Additionally, his passing ability often broke down the Grizzlies interior defense and led to easy points for the Spurs. On defense, his shot blocking consistently disrupted the Grizzlies offense and his post play never allowed center Marc Gasol and power forward Zach Randolph to impact the series in a meaningful way.
The All-NBA team for the 2012-2013 season was announced today and the results were predictable. Four of the players selected to this season’s first team, Lebron James, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul were also voted onto last year’s first team. Joining them on the first team this year is center Tim Duncan. He replaces Dwight Howard, who earned a spot on the 2013 third team.
Blake Griffin, Russell Westbrook and Tony Parker return to the second team from a season ago and are joined by Carmelo Anthony and Marc Gasol. The third team is comprised of Dwyane Wade, Howard and first-time selections David Lee, James Harden, and Paul George.
Players were selected for the honor by 119 sportswriters and broadcasters from Canada and the United States. They used a scoring system of 5 points for a first team vote, three for a second and one for a third. James led all players with 595 points and he was followed by Kevin Durant and Chris Paul who received 555 and 537 points respectively.
Indiana Pacers 49 - 32 vs. Miami Heat 66 - 16
Regular Season Series: Indiana Pacers 2, Miami Heat 1
The Miami Heat enters the Eastern Conference Finals as heavy favorites against the Indiana Pacers. They have lost only three times in their last forty eight games and have faced little resistance from their opponents thus far in the 2013 post season. However, the Pacers should give the Heat a fight in this series. They defeated the Heat twice in the regular season and have the interior size in center Roy Hibbert and forward David West to expose the Heat’s weakness in the paint.
This will not be an easy series for the Heat and they should not take the Pacers lightly. Here are five observations that could decide the outcome of the series.
The willpower of Lebron James