NBA Season Preview For SiriusXM

Cleveland Cavaliers Media Day

I joined Norm at Night on SiriusXM to preview the 20-14-15 NBA season. We talked about if the Toronto Raptors can build on last season, if the Cleveland Cavaliers are ready to win a title, why the Charlotte Hornets are a sleeper team and a bunch of other topics.

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Mike Budenholzer Talks About Al Horford’s Impact

Last season the Atlanta Hawks limped into the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference after Al Horford was lost early in the season with a pectoral injury that required surgery.

Mike Budenholzer talked about what Horford’s return means to the Atlanta Hawks, how his all-star big man helps the rest of the team on both ends of the court and the leadership he brings on and off the court.

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Observations From Toronto Raptors Locker Room After Beating Atlanta Hawks 109-102

Here are eight observations, notes and quotes from the Toronto Raptors locker room after the team beat the Atlanta Hawks 109-102:

  • Dwane Casey has a funny analogy about how it only matters what you do when the popcorn’s popping. It’s his way of saying big players step up in big moments when fans are packed in the stands. After the game Casey was asked about Amir Johnson being ready to play when the popcorn was popping and couldn’t resist letting loose with this great quote: “He put butter on it and salt and everything else. He was ready to roll tonight and I was really happy with his energy.”
  • Lucas Nogueira never stops smiling. Literally.
  • Amir Johnson: “We have a lot of things to clean up. They shot the hell out of the ball and we were lucky to get the win.”
  • Greivis Vasquez was wearing combat boots and Wu-Tang socks. Awesome combo.
  • Speaking of fashion, Lou Williams was wearing a Hawaiian-esque jacket.
  • Terrence Ross on the fans: “I mean, you can’t really explain it. You just have to experience it. It’s unbelievable how they mobbed out like this.”
  • DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry are proud dads. DeRozan has a prominent picture in his locker of him kissing his daughter while Lowry has a big picture of himself watching TV with his son.
  • Tyler Hansbrough: “I feel much more comfortable this year. I came into training camp having already learned all of the plays so I was able to pick up on things a lot faster than I did last year. I’m really comfortable this year and I hope I can continue to bring a spark off the bench for this team.”

Podcap: Raptors Beat Hawks 109-102

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Here’s audio from Dwane Casey, Terrence Ross, Patrick Patterson, Amir Johnson, Jonas Valanciunas and Tyler Hansbrough after Toronto’s 109-102 win over Atlanta.

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Podcast: 2014-14 NBA Season Preview

Cleveland Cavaliers Media Day

McNeill and Mark and back with another Hoops Addict Podcast. We break down the big changes in each conference, make some fearless predictions for the upcoming season, talk about Byron Scott ripping on Dwight Howard, Steve Nash not playing this season and the brilliance of LeBron James.

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LeBron James Raves About Steve Nash

“It’s tough. You hate to see anyone have the game be taken away from him because of injury and especially a talent like that. Obviously he’s worked his tail off to try to be healthy and play for that franchise and over his career he’s always kept his body in shape, we all knew that. For his body to fail him at a time where he still feels like he has something to give to the game, I think it sucks. At the same time, he has nothing to be ashamed of. He should be proud of every moment that he had in this league — from him waiting behind and sitting on the bench behind J-Kidd (Jason Kidd) to finally getting his opportunity in Dallas and going back to Phoenix and having an unbelievable career, the two MVPs, and doing the things that he did. You just look at him, you would never (know). If you’re playing street basketball and he’s out on the side, you’re not going to pick him. And then when he finally gets his chance to pick the four guys that he wants to run with, then you’re going to be like, ‘Damn! I should have took that guy. I should have took him.’ And he’s part of that 90-50-40 club (with) a few guys — (Kevin) Durant, (Larry) Bird, Dirk (Nowitzki). Nash, he did it multiple years. I think 4-5 years straight, which is crazy. And never one of the most athletic guys. Always just played with his mind and his agility. So it sucks. It’s always bad when a guy, like I said before, I’ll harp on it again, when your career is kind of shortened because of injury.”

LeBron James raves about Steve Nash

Derrick Rose Introduced His New “D Rose 5 Boost”

On Saturday, Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose introduced his new signature shoe, the D Rose 5 Boost to fans in Chicago.

He hosted 20 kids from local nonprofit After School Matters at the adidas store for an intimate Q&A session where he gave advice on how to pursue your dreams,  work hard and stay hungry. Rose gave each fan with their own pair of the D Rose 5 Boost, signed autographs and took photos to commemorate the moment.

Here are some photos of the event.

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Best Beards In Basketball Infographic

A big thanks to the fine folks at Wahl for sending me this fantastic infographic about the best beards in basketball.

One of my favourite stats is that in each of the past eight seasons, the league’s MVP has rocked a beard, in one form or another.

Wahl_NBA_infographic

Podcap: Raptors Beat Celtics 116-109

Here’s audio from DeMar DeRozan, Kyle Lowry, Lou Williams, Greivis Vasquez and Dwane Casey after Toronto’s 116-109 win over Boston.

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Observations From Toronto Raptors Locker Room

Here are some observations, notes and quotes from the Toronto Raptors locker room after the team beat the Boston Celtics 116-109:

  • Jonas Valanciunas was rocking a Mike Tyson shirt.
  • DeMar DeRozan: “Honestly, I don’t worry about nothing anymore. My confidence is that high. I feel like I can do anything once I’m on the court. I’m not trying to put any limitations on my game when I’m out there on the court.”
  • Bruno Caboclo was showing teammates a video of Leandro Barbosa crossing over an opponent. Terrence Ross couldn’t get enough of the video clip.
  • DeRozan gave Valanciunas some friendly ribbing over his beard.
  • Dwane Casey wasn’t ornery, but he wasn’t happy with the defensive effort from his team. I expect the team to go through a bunch of defensive drills during practice this weekend.
  • Kyle Lowry still has a sign that his son made for him last season hanging in his locker.
  • Greivis Vasquez on the Air Canada Centre: “This is the best atmosphere in the entire NBA.”