Me vs. Coup, Round 1


Let me just say, after digesting 8 games in two days…I am in love with the 2007 NBA Playoffs. How many opening weekends of the playoffs have been this competitive? This interesting? David Stern could not have rigged it any better if he tried. We have 7 (sorry LBJ) captivating and competitive matchups…even the Magic are keeping things interesting so far.

Now let me first admit my wrongs; I fully slept on the Denver Nuggets. I absolutely wrote them off and I’m going to have to apologize. I said that they were simply at the wrong place at the wrong time. The underrated key to the Nuggets success is Nene. I imagined Camby would be guarding Duncan and started having flashbacks to the 99 Finals…instead they put Nene on him and if you look at just the highlights, he made life absolute hell for Duncan. He showed his hands, played physical, always kept his body on him…pretty much as perfect as post defense as you can get. Thus Timmy went 7/17 and visited the line twice. On the night, SA went to the line only 10 times. Yikes. But back to Denver, their dynamic duo is playing out of their mind. Some of the things Carmelo Anthony was doing tonight was downright illegal. No one San Antonio could guard him with the way he was iso’ing tonight. AI took it over in the 4th and they got the W.

The Spurs big three played awful. The Big Fundamental was a big dud. The main reason for Ginobli coming off of the bench was to provide scoring and he goes 4/15 and shoots zero free throws. Tony Parker goes 8/20. Not a good night at all for San Antonio. I think they are in the most trouble. I still have them winning the series, but Denver is playing some good D right now. Like Carmelo said, they are finally shutting people down. Could it be San Antonio being at the wrong place at the wrong time? Who knows. Bruce Bowen can only guard one of their two guys, and unfortunately whoever draws the other assignment does not look like they can handle it.

Now….here is where the disagreement is coming Coup. You may disagree with me picking the Warriors to win in 6 or the hype of them being a sleeper…but they flat out beat Dallas tonight. There is no other way to look at it. And the amazing thing about it is the game wasn’t the trackmeet that everyone expected. It was more at the Mavs pace and the Warriors still pulled out the W. The evidence is there Coup…Dallas cannot deal with the smallball. The key is going to be can Avery make the adjustments to make it work. Don’t think Don Nelson doesn’t have any aces in the hole. Small-ball takes out Diop, Dampier, Croshere and Greg Buckner from the equation. Stackhouse is looking old in this series already. The only way Dirk can get off is to get in the post and work his ass off. He can’t catch it at the elbow, face up, dribble and spin because these small guys can move.

This is the re-emergence of Baron Davis. He is healthy and he is hungry. This man is a beast. Did you see the way he backed down Devean George??? They threw everyone at him and he dropped 33 like it was nothing. The Warriors won and Al Harrington could not buy a shot. I think Magic Johnson said it best; Dallas has no leadership. Look at the difference between Phoenix and Dallas. During that Suns game…you just knew Phoenix was going to put up a run, you could see it in Nash’s eyes. During the Dallas game, I wasn’t thinking ‘Man when is Dallas going to make their run’ I was thinking ‘Gosh as long as Golden State doesn’t give it away its theirs’. They have placed entirely too much pressure on themselves, and they are facing a free-wheeling Golden State team. Golden State has way too many options and Dallas can’t guard everyone.

“The Bulls should dismantle the Heat.”

Now what evidence would you possibly have to support this? You do know that Miami made their key run to get back in the game in the 4th minus D-Wade and Shaq right? Or that Miami has been in this situation before right? Or that Luol Deng had to play out of his ass (its not happening again) for Chicago to win right? I’ll give them the credit, but to write the defending champs, Shaq, D-Wade and Pat Riley off like that is saying something.