Breakfast Special: Dray, Durant, Dubs Destroyed

Well, if the Golden State Warriors were hoping for anything resembling relief with Draymond Green back in the lineup for a big national-TV game against the Houston Rockets Thursday night, the giant turd they left out on the court at Toyota Center would seem to suggest that the squad’s got bigger problems. Dray was 0-of-5 from the field, had no points, five rebounds, five assists, and five turnovers, whatever he contributed defensively got swamped under a minus-10 that was second-worst (behind only Kevin Durant) among the starters, and Golden State lost to Houston 107-86. Durant had a team-high 20 points, …

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Breakfast Special: Draymond’s Durant DNP

Draymond Green sat a game after bringing up Kevin Durant‘s impending free agency during a heated exchange between the two earlier in the week. And Warriors management? Well, they just essentially reminded Green that 7.5 points and 7.8 rebounds a game do not entitle someone to influence personnel decisions and suspended him. Green’s decline—in addition to all his other woes, he’s shooting 24 percent from three this year—makes him a curious case for the Warriors. On the one hand, he’s still the best ball-distributing forward in the league, with 7.4 assists a game to lead the team. But on the …

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Breakfast Special: Lonzo Teaches LeBron Free Throw Technique

The Los Angeles Lakers beat the woeful Atlanta Hawks by just a single point at home, and while 7-6 is exactly where you’d expect a team with a +0.7 point differential to be at 13 games into an 82-game season. The Lakers are, in many ways, the prototype G League Team Featuring LeBron James that the Cleveland Cavaliers were on two separate occasions in LeBron’s long and illustrious career. And it speaks to just how great LeBron is that this is so; LeBron’s 0.9 VORP is good for 2 or 3 wins in 13 games (2.43 if you go with …

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Breakfast Special: Houston, You Have A Problem

The ghost of Carmelo Anthony‘s career has cast a specter of evil over the Rockets’ locker room after an exorcism in Oklahoma City went horribly wrong. Indeed, both franchises are haunted now. The Rockets got spanked at home, 104-85, by a Portland Trail Blazers team that was on a road SEGABABA after having disposed of the Pacers Monday night. Which means either the 5-2 Blazers are for real…or the 1-5 Rockets are really that bad. Damian Lillard (8-of-10) and CJ McCollum (7-of-13) combined for 41 points, Jusuf Nurkic added 22 on 7-of-10, and Portland made just two fewer (10-8) three-pointers …

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Are the 2018-19 Houston Rockets Good?

And now for something completely different, in which we ask if a Western Conference Finals team that came one utterly horrendous stretch of three-point shooting away from a shot at the title is good. Of course they’re good. The Houston Rockets still have Chris Paul and James Harden. They have Clint Capela and Eric Gordon and the unpredictable but amazing-at-his-best Gerald Green. They even managed to grab Marquese Chriss off the Suns’ trash heap in hopes of turning him into someone other than a guy who sucks at NBA basketball. Houston won 65 games last year. They’re forecast for a …

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Breakfast Special: The Rockets Die by the Sword

The Houston Rockets lived by the three-point shot all season long, putting up three-point attempt rates so high that in plenty of games, they shot more threes than twos. Trouble was, their shooting went cold on them at exactly the wrong time, and they ended up losing Game 7 of the Western Conference Finals to the Golden State Warriors, 101-92. It wasn’t just that their shooting went cold. It’s that it went from pretty good, as they made six of their first 14 shots from long range (42.9 percent) to utterly putrid, as they then missed 27 three-pointers in a …

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It’s Game 7 Time. The 2018 Playoffs Are Redeemed.

Never in the history of basketball have such garbage series produced such great results in a conference finals. In the Eastern Conference, no game has been decided by less than nine points; each individual game has sucked. The home team has won in a relative walk. And the storyline—LeBron James is God, the rest of the Cavaliers are steaming hot dog crap, and the Celtics couldn’t beat the Maine Red Claws on the road. But it’s a Game 7. In Boston. With Kevin Love in concussion protocol and LeBron quite possibly needing a 50-point triple-double just to make the game …

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Image via Bob Evans Restaurants

Breakfast Special: Is Stephen Curry a Choke Artist?

Six times in the ultimate clutch situation, Stephen Curry has had a shot in the last 24 seconds of a playoff game that would have given Golden State the lead. All six times, he’s missed. That was Stephen Curry's 6th shot to take the lead in the last 0:24 of a playoff game He's missed all 6 pic.twitter.com/Hm8xTGp2f4 — Basketball Reference (@bball_ref) May 25, 2018 Chris Paul is injured, a busted hamstring likely keeping him either out or in extremely limited minutes in two games the Warriors must win in order to survive and advance to their fourth straight NBA …

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Breakfast Special: Andre Iguodala’s Veteran Leadership

You know we don’t go in much for eye test here at Pace and Space, and we especially don’t go in much for fuzzy “intangible” narratives that don’t have hard numbers to back them up. But how do you explain the Warriors’ repeated lapses of concentration when they had the chance to put the Rockets away both early and late? After all, the team led 12-0 almost before the Rockets got their warmups off. They led 82-70 in the fourth quarter. And in both cases, the Rockets erased the double-digit lead; in the latter case, they made Stephen Curry and …

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Breakfast Special: The Conference Finals Have Been Terrible

Over the weekend, our reward as fans for patiently awaiting the return of the NBA conference finals was…two anticlimactic blowouts, one that kept the narrative alive for two titans of the East trading blows as they defend their home floors, the other a reinforcement of the idea that Mike D’Antoni is the Marty Schottenheimer of basketball coaches and Daryl Morey, like Billy Beane in baseball, has a secret system that doesn’t work in the playoffs. Beginning in the East, Saturday featured Cleveland just plain kicking the crap out of Boston 116-86. The game got out of hand almost from the …

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