Fan Voting Should Not Be This Prevalent In NBA All-Star Voting!

The starting fives were released recently for the NBA All-Star Game, and there were a few people who won’t be starting for either squad.

One of those men is Russell Westbrook.

The press and the players made the intelligent vote; putting Westbrook ahead of both Stephen Curry and James Harden. But, the public had other plans, as they voted Curry first, Harden second, and Russ third.

And the kicker, with the weighted score for the three categories tied, is that the fans are the tiebreaker. Because of this, Curry and Harden are the starting guards for the Western Conference.

Now that’s a splendid idea! Make the portion of the members who are not paid to know basketball be the tiebreaker instead of the ones who have ACTUALLY PLAYED AGAINST HIM. (I’m laying on some pretty thick sarcasm, if you didn’t notice).

Now to be fair though, Harden has been BALLIN’ this year; averaging 28.9 PPG, 11.6 AST, and 8.3 REB per game for the Rockets.He absolutely deserves a nod.

But Curry? The fact you are voting a player that’s averaging 24.6 PPG, 6.1 AST, and 4.2 REB per game over someone who’s AVERAGING a triple-double is completely absurd.

This is a prime example on how the All-Star game is just a glorified popularity contest, and not a reflection of the current reality of this year’s NBA.

Now don’t twist my words, because I’m not saying we need to do away with the fan vote completely. I’m just saying that we need to make the fan vote less prevalent than the other two, such as the player vote.

Why don’t we give more weight to the player vote, and less weight to the fan vote? Make this a game for the players who know who the best of the best is; who play against the best of the best night in and night out.

Don’t make this a game based on players’ past accomplishments, or their popularity.

Personally, I don’t want to see Steph Curry start a second consecutive All-Star game if he hasn’t performed to that caliber throughout the season.

I want to see players who deserve the honor of starting. Not a popularity vote based on what they’ve done before.

Take Isaiah Thomas of the Boston Celtics as another example.

Isaiah has been putting on a show on the east coast, posting 28.7 PPG, 6.0 AST, and 2.7 REB per game. But, he also lost the tiebreaker because of the fan vote.

Now, he’ll be sitting behind the likes of Kyrie Irving, who he has been out-performing SIGNIFICANTLY this year.

Do you want to know why he lost the fan vote??

It’s because, once again, of POPULARITY.

Since he is on the rise, and hasn’t been part of a championship team yet, he doesn’t get to start. Yea, that makes sense, (again, sarcasm)!

But basically, in the end, we are keeping two of the best guards out of the starting lineups for the All-Star game because the other guys were more popular than them?

I mean, I thought the All-Star game was supposed to be the BEST of the BEST playing on the same court for one night. So, shouldn’t the very best have the honor of being the starters?

Fans, you screwed up!

And NBA, you need to FIX THIS!

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Derrick Rose Needs To Stop Talking

Who is the PR guy for the New York Knicks? I mean honestly, who is keeping track of what Derrick Rose is saying to the media?

Now, for those of you who may not know, Rose has been in the media recently talking about the Knicks and the upcoming season.

One of the most well known, (and one of my favorite), quotes to come from Derrick Rose included the comparison of the Knicks and Warriors; calling New York a “super team.”

And if that amount of stupidity was not enough for you, there is also this little quote brought to you by the great people of Bleacher Report;

“I think we have a chance to win every game, and in the league, that’s rare.”

-Derrick Rose via Bleacher Report

Let’s get something straight here. Derrick Rose’s optimism about this upcoming season is making him sound like a fool to anyone not wearing Knick orange and blue. New York is the farthest thing from an 82-0 win team, much less a “super team.” In fact, I don’t see them winning more than 45 games, and would be EXTREMELY lucky if they happen to make anything higher than the 7th seed in the East this season.

Reason why? Let’s look at the team…

At the point, you guessed it, it’s the man himself Derrick Rose. Rose, for those who may not know, averaged 16 points per game during 66 games last season with the Chicago Bulls.

But this isn’t the same Derrick Rose we all knew from his MVP days. Rose is playing on bad knees, has lost a step, and who knows if another major injury is coming in his future.

In addition to that, Rose hasn’t provided sustainable playing time for the Bulls in the previous years. Since the ’11-’12 season, Rose has played in only 166 of the possible 410 games in those five years. I could be wrong, but I think a franchise would prefer their “stars” to be a little more reliable, and not as much of an injury risk.

But what about Joakim Noah? He was the “heart and soul” of the Bulls. Can’t he be the new “heart and soul” of the Knicks?

Sure, he was able to average 12 pts and 11 boards a game during the ’13-’14 season with the Bulls. But he hasn’t surpassed that the last two years. In fact, Jo hasn’t surpassed 70 games in the past two years either.

So, two of your biggest recruitment’s this year have had trouble not staying on the court recently, and have seen drastic dips in production. How does that sound like an 82-0 win team Derrick?

Then, you have the “great” Carmelo Anthony; the “savior” of the Knicks.

Don’t get it twisted, Melo is a great scorer. He’s averaged 21.9 points per game throughout his long 13 year career.

But to become a scoring threat like he is, you need to demand the ball, and that’s exactly what he does. Throughout his 13 year career, Carmelo has averaged a total of 19 shot attempts per game; with many being very ill-advised. With the constant demand for the ball, Derrick will get less touches, Jo will get less touches, and the whole team will go through Melo.

Which means if Melo has a bad night, the team will have a bad night.

And then there is the obvious one, the dreaded defense of Melo. Yikes, the defense. When arguably your best player can’t defend some of his counterparts like Lebron and KD, you are not going to win games.

And Courtney Lee will probably be the starter at SG…… I really shouldn’t have to go to much in depth there.

Finally, there is the only shining light of the Knicks, Kristaps Porzingis.

Porzingis, who averaged 14 points, 7 boards and 2 blocks a game, came out and surprised the league with his monstrous 2015-2016 season when everyone thought he was going to be a major project.

Porzingis is on the rise in his career. He’s not a washed up “has-been,” or a star who is only great on one side of the ball. If the Knicks were smart, they would build around him for the future and stop trying to salvage something now.

But overall, this team is average.

No wait, scratch that, this team is a bit below average. You have a bunch of has beens that NY is trying to salvage something out of. And don’t get me started on the bench situation. Talk about a disaster waiting to happen.

But hey, maybe I’m wrong. Maybe Derrick knows something we don’t.

Maybe Carmelo will win defensive player of the year. Maybe Derrick and Jo will play more than 75 games and return to their MVP and DPOY selves respectively…..

And then maybe Shaq will win an Oscar for Kazaam.

Seriously Derrick, stay away from the media for a while. You’ll thank me later.

Dwyane Wade Is NOT The Answer For The Chicago Bulls

For those of you that may not have seen the constant bombardment of media outlets covering this story, the Chicago Bulls have signed the 34-year old Chicago Native with a history of knee problems named Dwyane Wade.

Wait, didn’t they just get rid of a “Hometown Son” with a history of knee problems a few weeks ago? Isn’t this a little counter-productive?

Anyway, signing Wade is unnecessary for the process of going younger for the future. The Bulls “brass” is stuck in this perpetual cycle where they “must win now,” with putting asses in seats being a “job well done” if they can’t.

That is exactly what you are going to get with Wade. His presence on the team will make it seem like the Bulls are in a “must win” mode. But in the end, he will just turn into a big name that put fans in the building because of his Chicago ties and his championship pedigree.

“But what about attracting big names during next year’s free agency,” some may say?

What free agents are the Bulls going to attract? What makes you think that any free-agent is going to be impressed by Rondo, old man Wade, Butler, and the Rec-League All-Stars?

“So then what would you do,” someone may ask?

Don’t throw all your eggs in one basket. Meaning, don’t give a majority of your money to an older version of Derrick Rose just to save face with your fan base.

Wade is going to be 35 years old, and has only played 70+ games ONCE since the 2010-2011 season.

Instead, what should have been done was the Bulls should have signed a cheap big man that can put up 8-10 points and 8 boards a game, along with another cheap wing that you can put in to eat up minutes.

By doing this, the Bulls open up even more cap room to use on the bigger free agents next year, such as Russel Westbrook, Blake Griffin, and more! Not saying that they will land these guys, but it’s worth having more money to spend then not.

WITHOUT WADE, the Bulls would be garbage next year, and would absolutely not make the postseason. WITHOUT WADE, the Bulls would have a higher chance of snagging a high lottery pick in a draft that is laced with top-tier young talent.

But with Wade, the Bulls would be lucky to see a pick above 18.

There goes the young talent rebuild!

 

 

 

KSherman’s 2015-2016 NBA Regular Season Awards

This was such a special year in the NBA, a year that will go down in history as one of the greatest seasons in league history. For one, the Golden State Warriors were in pursuit of the storied ’95-’96 Bulls record of 72-10. Then, you have the living legend, Kobe Bryant, making his retirement tour that ended with a 60 point CLASSIC against the Utah Jazz. With this and all of the other moments of the year, it’s time for the second annual KSherman NBA Regular Season Awards.

Surprise Team Of The Year: The Portland Trail Blazers are the obvious choice for this award with the way they proved to the world they still have the talent to make a difference in the league. This past offseason, the Trail Blazers lost four of their five starters to free agency in Wesley Matthews, Nicolas Batum, LaMarcus Aldridge, and Robin Lopez. Once this happened, all eyes were on Damian Lillard to see if he can help lead this team back to the playoffs…..and he did just that. With the rise of CJ McCollum to a 20 PPG average, and the team playing as a cohesive unit, they were able to get the 5th seed in the playoffs. Playing the Clippers in the first round hasn’t been going very smoothly for them so far, but this team is just a few pieces away from becoming contenders in this league. Because of this, this is why the Trail Blazers deserve this award.

Biggest Disappointment: The Chicago Bulls didn’t make a single damn move before the season as they kept their squad relatively the same. No wait, I take that back, they did fire one of the best coaches in Bulls history in favor of Coach Fred Hoiberg; former Head Coach at Iowa State. And how did they fair? A 42-40 record and missing the playoffs for the first time in eight seasons. This should have NOT happened. If you are keeping basically the same team, but changing coaches, that new coach better be worth a damn and your team should still be playoff contenders. But that didn’t happen, so that is why the Chicago Bulls get my “Biggest Disappointment” award.

Moment For The Ages: The Kobe Bryant retirement tour ended in amazing fashion, with “The Mamba” putting up 60 points on the Utah Jazz to help lead the Lakers to a win in their regular season finale. During this game, the crowd came to see “Vintage Kobe,” and they got “Vintage Kobe.” But that’s not the moment I am talking about, oh no! With the 60 points aside, the moment that I am referring to is the ovation that Kobe received after he was subbed out with four seconds left in the game. It wasn’t any normal kind of ovation, it was a special kind of ovation. The loyal Laker fans were cheering for a purpose, in admiration for a legend leaving the floor for a final time, wearing the storied purple and gold that he wore for 20 years. If you get a chance, just look for footage of that moment and watch, because words do not do it justice. It was a Moment For The Ages, and that is why that moment deserves the “Moment For The Ages” award.

Now did I miss any teams? Did I miss any moments? Are there any awards that I should have added in? Let me know in the comments below, on Facebook, or tweet me at @KShermanSports. Thank You!

 

NCAA National Championship Postgame Report: A Fan’s Game

What just transpired in the National Championship game between the Tar Heels of North Carolina and the Wildcats of Villanova was so intense, that I am genuinely sorry if you missed it. To start, with 13 seconds left in the game and down 74-71, Marcus Paige and the Tar Heels marched down the court, where Paige knocked proceeded to knock down an off-balanced prayer that knotted the game up at 74 all with four seconds left. But the Wildcats weren’t going away that easy, as junior Kris Jenkins of Villanova drained the buzzer-beating dagger as time expired that won the Wildcats their first National Title since 1985.

As a team, Villanova shot 58% from the field and 57% from 3-point land; lead by sophomore Phil Booth and senior Ryan Arcidiacano, who shot 85% and 66% from the field respectively. Throughout the tournament, this team had one of the most memorable runs to a championship in history, basically shooting the lights out every time they stepped on the floor. But, with Villanova’s inability to capitalize on the glass; losing the offense rebound battle 16-2, the Tar Heels were able to keep it close throughout the entire game.

On the other side, North Carolina had one of the best 3-point shooting performances of the season during the National Championship; shooting 64.7% from behind the arc. The Tar Heels had been shooting a measly 32% from three the entire year; but they found another gear and were able to rain down shots from deep throughout. This surge in three point efficiency allowed North Carolina to actually stay in this game, even after they trailed off and allowed Villanova to come back in the second half.

(…and so on, and so on with the statistics).

The point is, I can throw statistics your way all day long to show who did good where, etc… But the truth is, this was anyone’s game from beginning to end. Villanova and North Carolina were closely matched from the start, with North Carolina being favored by only 2 points going into the contest.

The fact that this came down to two crucial threes in the closing seconds was the perfect closing point to a tournament that fans, like myself, were hoping for. That’s what a National Championship game is supposed to be like; a game with intensity and drama right down to the end. This was a “Fan’s Game,” and I sure-as-hell am going to remember it for a long time.

What Being A Fan Really Means!

Recently, I was having an argument with one of my friends about our favorite football team. During the argument, I was being really critical about our team, saying that the quarterback is a bum, and that I do not expect them to get more than 6 wins this year. My friend proceeds to tell me that I am not a true fan of the team; that I am what some would call a “bandwagon” fan. Now for one, he obviously doesn’t know the meaning of the term “bandwagon” fan; and two, a true fan of a team is without a doubt allowed to be critical about their team.

Just to get this out of the way, a “Bandwagon Fan” is someone who hops on board for the ride when a team is doing well, even though they didn’t even care beforehand. An example of what a “Bandwagon” fan would be; a majority of the Miami Heat fanbase was filled with “Bandwagon” fans when Lebron and Chris Bosh decided to form that super team with Wade. An example of what is NOT a “Bandwagon” fan would be; someone who has been a fan of the team since the beginning, has not changed his/her favorite team ever, and still watches their games even though they may not be doing so well. And in addition to that, as a fan, I have the right and the obligation to be critical about my favorite teams and the decisions that they might be making.

Let’s compare this to having dinner at a restaurant, shall we? Let’s say you go to your favorite burger place, and ask for the double supreme with bacon, and all of the fixings; but you would like it medium. Then, when you receive your burger, it was cooked past well-done, completely burnt, and it tastes like chalk. Now, do you just sit there and tell the chef that it’s not very good, but there’s always next time? Hell No! You go up to the chef, tell him/her that this tastes like a shoe, and that you would like a new burger. The same thing goes with being a fan of a sports team. Fans put money into their team’s, buying all kinds of merchandise, tickets, TV packages, and so much more. They are customers, and they have the right to say that what you are putting on the field/court/ice is garbage and that you need to do something about it.

Being a fan of a team means you have a right to say that something isn’t right, or if something needs to be changed. One of the major reasons that these organizations actually exist is because they want fans to come in and be entertained. It’s not like they just open the gates and whoever wants to come in can come in, but if there’s nobody then that’s fine too. A majority of the teams actually care about the product that they are putting out there, and they want to put a team out there that the fans and the city will be proud of. So, simply put, you don’t have to always be positive and say things like; “Aw shucks, well there’s always next time.” If the team sucks, SPEAK UP!

Women Coaching Male Sports

Before I begin this article, I would like to start by congratulating Becky Hammon, Jen Welter, and Nancy Lieberman on being hired as coaches for their respective teams. Hammon, Welter and Lieberman have become the first three women to secure coaching positions with major men’s sports organizations. Now, the reason that I bring this up is because I’ve had some conversations recently about the topic of women coaching men’s sports, and I would like to give my opinion on the topic; in a more extensive form.

Now, my definition of what it takes to be a coach in any sport is experience; do you have experience in that particular sport? Have you played/coached in that particular sport professionally for a significant amount of time? When it comes to these three individuals, they all have just that, experience. They have each played professionally in their respective sports for numerous years, and have become students of the game during their tenures. I don’t understand how some people can say that there is a difference in the sports, and to be quite honest I only see two; the differences in their abilities (such as how alot more men can dunk than women), and the fact that one has men playing and the other has women playing. I mean if you can see another difference, please feel free to tweet me or leave it in the comments; but to me, plays are still plays, schemes are still schemes, no matter if it’s men running them or women running them.

Just think, the only two major differences between a female coach and a male coach is their gender (obviously), and the different plays/schemes that they run (which always comes with a new coach coming to an organization). I mean look at the great Pat Summitt for example; she is a woman, and she is considered one of the greatest college basketball coaches ever. She obviously knew what she was doing when she lead the University of Tennessee’s women’s basketball team to 8 titles, as well as a .841 winning percentage during her tenure as head coach. So, simply put, when it comes to coaching, it’s all about your knowledge of the game and not what your gender is.