Breakfast Special: Nuggets-Spurs Has Gone Mad

The Denver Nuggets went 34-7 at home during the regular season. The San Antonio Spurs won 32 of their 41 home contests, losing just nine. If you knew nothing else about the series, you’d predict that it’d be the kind of seven-game series where the home team won every game and it ended in the Mile High City without the series truly starting in the “a series doesn’t start until the road team wins a game” sort of way. Well, hold on to your butts, folks. Denver won 117-103, in San Antonio, and leveled the series at 2-2, with each …

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Breakfast Special: #FearTheDeer Hearts And Gentle People

I am, via a couple of national-media follows, plugged into Pistons Twitter in a way that is matched by few other NBA teams—it’s pretty much the Mavs, Suns, and Pace and Space Emeritus Zach d’Arbeloff’s particular brand of Weird Celtics Twitter (speaking of, follow @embracesmarf)—and as such I got to see a fanbase demoralized by the pure power of Milwaukee Bucks basketball and Dwane Casey’s coaching their own team. I have about one hundred and one questions for Dwane Casey. — Duncan Smith (@DuncanSmithNBA) April 18, 2019 The Bucks won 120-99, bringing the total margin on the first two games …

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Breakfast Special: Home Court Advantage For Real This Time

Saturday’s games featured a bunch of road upsets, three of them to be exact, and that got the attention of the home teams in Sunday’s games, who came out seeking to avoid the fate that happened the day before. With the reminder to pay attention firmly in hand, not only did the home teams all hold serve, but two of them won the kinds of blowouts that you usually expect from playoff teams playing their starters against the likes of the Suns and Knicks. But first… Ugly with a Capital UGG-LEE. The Boston Celtics and Indiana Pacers played a playoff …

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Breakfast Special: Just Let the Playoffs Start Already

Regular-season NBA basketball in April is both the best thing (Denver and Minnesota in what was basically a play-in game on the last day of the season in 2018, tonight’s Pacers-Celtics tilt, and David Robinson and Shaquille O’Neal vying for the scoring title in 1994) and the worst thing (every dull game between two teams already eliminated from the playoffs.) This is especially amplified on nights like Thursday night, where there were three games in the entire league, two of them were meaningless blowouts… …but the third was a closely-contested potential Eastern Conference Finals preview on national television and involved …

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Breakfast Special: Lance, Make ‘Em Dance

The NBA featured one game with direct playoff implications, one potential Finals preview, and eight games that ultimately meant just about nothing in the grand scheme of how things shake out three weeks from now—even though one of them was a legit thriller that we’ll get to in the third featured spot, so stick around for that. The thing about all this frivolity is it leaves room for the ultimate frivolous player, Lance Stephenson of the Los Angeles Lakers, a walking ball of highlights and cognitive fan dissonance. And that was all an elaborate setup for Lance shaking Jeff Green …

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Breakfast Special: Milwaukee’s Best

Spring is here, suffering is here, life is Skittles and life is beer, and the Los Angeles Lakers got poisoned in the park like pigeons by the Milwaukee Bucks, 115-101. It was the first time since 1982 that the Bucks swept the season series from the Lakers twice in a row, and those ’81 and ’82 Lakers teams had Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Last year, a not-yet-there Milwaukee team managed to grab both wins from the practically-G-League Lakers, and this year, the first game at Staples Center featured a Bucks road win. The home rematch…well, the Bucks didn’t have …

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Breakfast Special: The Long, Dark Night Begins

Indiana Pacers fans have been dreading this moment ever since Victor Oladipo got hurt. A stretch of 11 games in which Indiana plays 10 playoff teams, eight of them on the road, and gets only the woeful Knicks at Bankers Life Fieldhouse to break up the potential 11-game losing streak started on national television… …and the Bucks came out in the third quarter, turned a game that was close at the half into a runaway, and won 117-98. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 29 points on 10-of-17 shooting and added 12 rebounds. The Bucks hit half of their shots and 40 percent …

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The Indiana Pacers Are Starting a Small-Market Movement

The conventional wisdom in the NBA in 2019 is that you need to assemble a Big Three of superstars who then tear up the rest of the league and through top-heavy domination plow through the playoffs and win the title. The modern version of this started in Boston in 2008, traced a path through LeBron James and the Miami Heat between 2010 and 2014, and reached an apex with the Golden State Warriors, who have become such a destination for stars that they go six deep with talent that is now or at one point has been All-Star caliber. Their …

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Breakfast Special: A Random Bucks-Kings Game Was the Best Thing

The Milwaukee Bucks and Sacramento Kings got together, played a barn burner of an NBA game that ended 141-140 in overtime in favor of the league’s best team, featured a Sacramento comeback from 14 down with 6:14 to go in regulation, involved the Kings actually grabbing a 126-124 lead, and then a combination of an Eric Bledsoe layup at the end of regulation (and Bledsoe stealing the ball from De’Aaron Fox to ensure the Kings didn’t get off a final shot) and then Malcolm Brogdon icing the game with two critical free throws to put the Bucks up 4, ensuring …

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Breakfast Special: Rocket Strangulation

James Harden got yet another 30-point game as the NBA came back from the All-Star break, but LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers stole the show, beating the Houston Rockets 111-105, erasing a 19-point Houston lead, and just generally showing off the same Rockets weakness that Golden State exploited in last year’s Western Conference Finals. Namely, when Houston is downright determined to miss three-pointers, no man or god can stop them. The Rockets shot 29.1 percent from long range (12-of-41), LeBron posted 29 points and 11 rebounds, Brandon Ingram added 27 (on an efficient 8-of-16 from the field and …

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