Shawn Windsor Detroit Free Press Published 6:01 AM EDT Apr 14, 2019 It is the debate of our time, the pro-tankers versus the anti-tankers, and it’s ripping the Detroit Pistons’ fan base apart. Not literally, of course. Just spiritually. And it has to stop. So: How about each side give the other a break? There is more than one way to build a title contender. And all of them require a bit of luck. Even when a team gets lucky, it still has to get … lucky. Take the Philadelphia 76ers, the pro-tankers' favorite example. The 76ers purposefully lost. That led to four straight top-three picks, including two No. 1 picks. (Though their second No. 1 pick was acquired via a trade with the Boston Celtics.) What did they get for their trouble? A generational talent in Joel Embiid. A tantalizing, 6-10 point guard in Ben Simmons — who can’t shoot. And two players who are no longer with the … [Read more...] about Detroit Pistons in the playoffs: Good or bad for the future?
Teams in the playoffs
SECTIONS Search E-edition Customer Service Advertise Newsletters News News Local Crime Databases Education Election Politics Nation/World Special Reports North Carolina South Carolina Corrections Columnists Retro Charlotte Your Schools All Blogs & Columns Sports Sports Carolina Panthers Charlotte Hornets That's Racin' High Schools College Sports Charlotte Knights/MLB Other Sports Blogs & Columnists Inside the Panthers Inside the NBA Prep Insiders Scott Fowler Tom Sorensen All Blogs & Columns Politics Politics Elections The North Carolina Influencer Series RNC 2020 Business Business Banking Stocks Center Top Workplaces National Business What's in Store Development All Blogs & Columns Living Living Religion Food & Drink Health & Family Home & … [Read more...] about Hurricanes’ goalie tandem not the first for the team in the playoffs
The Denver Nuggets lost the most important regular-season game in franchise history on April 11, 2018. It was Game 82 against the Minnesota Timberwolves. If the Nuggets won, they’d make the postseason for the first time since 2013; if Minnesota did, it would be the T-wolves' first playoff appearance since 2004. At the end of regulation, the game was tied. In overtime, the Nuggets let a lead slip with just over a minute to go, and ended up losing 112-106. They’d be going home for good. How do you respond after a loss like that? Tim Connelly, Denver’s president of basketball operations, decided on continuity. Despite pressure from fans, he kept coach Mike Malone, even giving him a two-year extension. He re-signed center Nikola Jokic to the biggest deal in franchise history: five years, $147 million. He kept microwave scorer Will Barton on a four-year, $53 million contract. Connelly dumped a couple of bad salaries and bad fits in Wilson Chandler and Kenneth … [Read more...] about The Denver Nuggets have emerged as one of the best teams in the NBA. How did that happen?
The Golden State Warriors will almost assuredly enter the 2019 NBA Playoffs as the No. 1 seed in the West, despite only a narrow lead over the Denver Nuggets in the standings here in late February. Getting the top seed isn’t that important to the Warriors, but by sheer excellence, they seem entitled to it. The Warriors are the rare team that can win 70 percent of its games without ever trying all that hard for all that long. Odds are the Warriors will rip through the West playoffs no matter who they face, but it’s worth noting that the first round is shaping up to be an interesting test for Golden State. There are currently seven teams within three games of the No. 8 seed in either direction — from the 35-25 Houston Rockets (currently No. 5 in the standings) to the No. 11 L.A. Lakers at 29-31. The Warriors could draw any one of these seven teams in the first round depending on how the remainder of the season shakes out. Which would the Warriors likely prefer, … [Read more...] about Who should the Warriors WANT to face in the playoffs?
The 76ers traded for Jimmy Butler in November, then landed Tobias Harris the day before the trade deadline. The acquisition of two fringe All-Stars to pair with Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons sent a loud message: The Sixers are here to win right now. But hold on, Philly: slow down some. That was cute and all, but the East isn’t a one-horse race. In fact, the Sixers are only in fifth place in the conference. And three of the four teams in front of them made moves to improve their rosters, too: The Eastern Conference was once LeBron James’ personal playground when he made eight straight NBA Finals appearances. But now LeBron’s out West, fighting for his playoff streak on a Lakers team that failed to trade for Davis. The East is up for grabs, and everyone’s got a hat in the ring. Who’s ruling the East, now? It’s a question that doesn’t have an answer at the moment, and won’t have one until one team hoists the conference championship trophy. … [Read more...] about Who’s the best NBA team in the East now?