Charles Barkley, a former NBA superstar, and now TNT NBA analyst, continually has made a career in television off being overly critical of players, especially Lebron. That's how Chuck has always been though, he's rough around the edges, everyone knows that, but most people love his brutally honest takes on TNT. Well, when asked what he thought of Lebron going to the media pleading that the Cavs needed another playmaker, this is what he had to say...
"Inappropriate. Whiny. All of the above," Barkley said of James last week. "The Cleveland Cavaliers, they have given him everything he wanted. They have the highest payroll in NBA history. He wanted J.R. Smith last summer, they paid him. He wanted [Iman] Shumpert last summer. They brought in Kyle Korver. He's the best player in the world. Does he want all of the good players? He don't want to compete? He is an amazing player. They're the defending champs." -ESPN
Lebron initially took the high road saying it's just for ratings, and he wasn't going to take it to heart. That was his initial comments, on Monday the topic resurfaced, and Lebron must've came to the realization that the Rogaine is never going to work, because he was vicious with the comments he made Monday. Here's Lebron's response to Barkley's statement above.
"He's a hater, What makes what he says credible? Because he's on TV?" "I'm not going to let him disrespect my legacy like that," James told ESPN. "I'm not the one who threw somebody through a window. I never spit on a kid. I never had unpaid debt in Las Vegas. I never said, 'I'm not a role model.' I never showed up to All-Star Weekend on Sunday because I was in Vegas all weekend partying. All I've done for my entire career is represent the NBA the right way. Fourteen years, never got in trouble. Respected the game. Print that." -ESPN
As if Lebron hadn't already violated Barkley's life enough, he had plenty more to say...
"Go watch the '93 Finals when John Paxson hit the shot," James said. "Barkley and Jordan were laughing and joking with each other during one of the games while somebody's shooting a free throw. In the Finals. But, oh, nobody were friends back then. I know he wanted to retire a long time ago, but he can't," James said. "He's stuck up on that stage every week. And if this makes him want to talk to me, the schedule's out there," James said. "He knows every road arena I'll be in. Don't just come up to me at All-Star and shake my hand and smile."
As much as I agree with everything Lebron said above, it was definitley uncalled for. Barkley is just doing his job, which is calling it how he see's it, and not once did Barkley take a shot a Lebron's personal life. Barkley even went out of his way to call Lebron a good person on the air that night, but Lebron was obviously ticked off from losing to the dreadful Dallas Mavericks, who just seem to have Lebron's number (no one forgot about 2011 Finals), so he decided to put Chuck in a body bag. Any time you call out a player of Lebron's caliber, which is never because no is Lebron's caliber, saying he doesn't want to compete, that's very offensive. Lebron has been competing at a higher level than anyone in the league the last 14 years and you're going to question his competitive nature, that's just plain stupid. I love Charles Barkley running his fat mouth, makes TNT pre and post game show way more entertaining, but he crossed a line that he should've never crossed. Even Shaq came to Lebron's defense saying that Barkley never won a championship, let alone tried to go back to back, so he shouldn't be questioning anyone's competitive nature. I wish it could've stopped right there, unfortunately Lebron had one more remark that reminded me why I hated Lebron before he took down the Warriors. (Yes, the only reason I currently appreciate Lebron is because he saved us from the Warriors monopolizing the NBA.)
"I'm tired of biting my tongue, There's a new sheriff in town." -ESPN
Shut the hell up Lebron you baby back bitch, you're not a sheriff, you're not tough, you flop when you barely get touched, just continue to beat the Warriors, and shut the hell up. Every professional athlete bites their tongue, it's part of dealing with the media. I love the crazy responses because it makes for a great story, if Lebron really didn't give a shit about what Barkley said then he just would've gave a boring response like he did the first time, and this whole dilemma would've never started. Now Charles Barkley is calling for a paint ball shootout between him and Lebron, dumb idea by Chuck, what do expect though, Charles Barkley was never the brightest light in the chandelier. That's exactly why Lebron should've never gave this any attention. Like Chuck said though, Lebron is whiny, so of course he was going to make a stink of this. Lebron is slowly but surely returning to heel Lebron and I don't like it one bit.
"We were doing a lot of really good things with the Knicks. That's what bothers me. The good that was being done got overshadowed by opinion, actually—inaccurate opinion about a personal matter. Nobody really knows what happened, because there's been just noise about what happened."What ultimately took place with Fisher's job was Jackson's deeming after a year-and-a-half that Fisher didn't have what it took to be the team president's protege or the right coach for the Knicks."To observe something from the place that Phil has sat and experienced, you can't compare to that," Fisher said. "You can't try and say someone else isn't doing it the way possibly one of the greatest who has ever been able to do it, did it when he did it. They don't teach ninth-grade algebra the same way they used to teach ninth-grade algebra." - Bleacher Report
So, Derek Fisher started jawing off about the progress the Knicks were making under him, and ultimately blamed his firing on the personal matters between him and Matt Barnes; along with not being able to live up to Phil Jackson's legacy. The reality of the situation was Derek Fisher was screwed from the moment he took the job. Obviously it doesn't help that in his first few weeks with the team he got into an altercation with former teammate Matt Barnes for sleeping with his baby mama, but like in all sports winning cures everything. Too bad the Knicks couldn't win. The reason the Knicks couldn't win wasn't because of Fisher, it was because the second best player on the team that year was Langston Galloway, Tim Hardaway Jr., or Jose Calderon, pick your poison. Not to mention Carmelo Anthony sat out more than half the season. The players on the team were god awful almost to the point where I look back on that roster now and think how was this an NBA team. I don't care how good the system is, or how talented of a coach you have, no one was winning more than 20 games with that 2014-15 Knicks roster. The following season the Knicks added Aaron Affalo, Robin Lopez, Jerian Grant, and Kristaps Porzingis and the team improved dramatically despite how the New York media may have spun it. When you go from winning 17 games in 82 played to winning 23 games in 54 played that's moving in the right direction. Looking at the roster from that season it's obvious the Knicks weren't going to make the playoffs, they didn't have nearly enough talent, but at least they were moving in the right direction. Fisher was fired after 54 games, then Kurt Rambis took over, and Rambis won 9 games out of the remaining 28.
Fisher clearly was let go prematurely for whatever reason. Fisher believes it was because of the altercation with Barnes and because Phil Jackson had unrealistic expectations, I agree with the latter. Phil Jackson wanted to succeed so badly as an executive, unfortunately his plan to sign mark key free agents to put talent around Melo failed miserably. Apparently the 'Zen Master' couldn't quite woe the free agents by putting 11 Rings in front of them like he thought he would be able to. Pressure from the brutal NY media was pouring on and he needed a scapegoat. Fisher was the easiest guy to throw under the bus with media already on his back about his personal problems, so Phil decided to fire him to take the heat off himself. Well, it's now clear to the world that it wasn't Derek Fisher's fault, and Phil Jackson is the one to blame for the Knicks being a train wreck. Fisher will eventually get another shot in the league to coach, but Phil Jackson will never get an opportunity to be an executive after his tenure with the Knicks is up. Looks like Fisher will get the last laugh in this matter.
Everything went perfectly smooth at Ben Simmons regularly scheduled foot scan, his foot has finally fully-healed, and he is now officially on the comeback trail to making his NBA debut. Simmons is still going to miss at least another month with rehabbing or whatever medical precautions that are being taken, so expect him to be back for the stretch run. With the Sixers being just 4.5 games out of the playoffs in the east, Simmons could be the boast the Sixers need to sneak into the playoffs. With Embiid flourishing in his limited minutes and the rest of the young players seeming to feed off the new energy Embiid has provided, along with them gaining confidence in their ability along the way, it seems like the Sixers might actually have a shot at this thing. This thing being making the playoffs and having the Cavs sweep them in the first round. Now, they have been 8-3 in their last 11, but let's not get carried away. It's a long season, it's a grind, and young player aren't used to that grind. As long as Simmons comes back, can remain healthy, and shows promise, all Sixers fans should rejoice with how successful this season has been. Playoffs this year means nothing, because let's be realistic the Sixers aren't going anywhere in the playoffs if they were to pull off that miracle to begin with, so Sixers fans should be more than happy with this season. They have plenty to look forward to, after two years of sitting out due to injury, Joel Embiid has proven he's a premiere big man in this league on his way to revolutionizing the game. Now, Ben Simmons, a 6'10" guard is on the fast track to making his debut in the league, Sixers fans have a lot to be excited about. In all honesty, if I were a Sixers fan, I'd be rooting for the team to get a lottery pick instead of a postseason spot. Don't rush the process.
Gotta Love the NBA regular season, filled with bad games, and great headlines to carry the sport into the playoffs when watching the games actually gets more exciting than talking about it. Every year now it seems like at some point in the regular season when Lebron's team is struggling, everything immediately flips into panic mode. We all know the 2017 NBA Finals matchup will be the Cavs and Warriors, but everyone will do anything to try to make an argument otherwise. It's clear the Cavs are struggling right now, but Lebron freaking out and saying, "We need a f--king playmaker, I'm not saying you can just go find one, like you can go outside and see trees. I didn't say that... I don't know what we got to offer. I just know me, personally? I don't got no time to waste. I'll be 33 in the winter, and I ain't got time to waste. That's what I'm talking about.", is definitley not the rational way to approach the problem at hand. Sounds like Lebron is having his first midlife crisis. I understand the Cavs have been struggling of late, but come postseason he knows, just like I know along with the rest of America, that this team is just as capable of last year's team to win the championship. He says they need another playmaker, well they did just get Kyle Korver, although he is a shooter not necessarily a playmaker. That's not the point though, the point is the team is obviously willing to make moves to win now. Which leads me to believe in a little bit of a conspiracy theory.
Melo to the Cavs. This is something I could potentially see happening, maybe it's more of something I want to see him happen, but regardless the stars are aligning perfectly for this move to occur. Trade deadline is right around the corner, the Cavs are in a little bit of a panic, and Melo is beefing with Phil Jackson in New York. Phil wants Melo out of New York, but Melo has been adamant about wanting to stay. Although I do believe he would leave for the right situation, and I don't think anyone would turn down a chance to play with Lebron and compete for a ring. How could the Cavs afford to get Melo? Trade Kevin Love. Kevin Love is not a superstar as a matter of fact he's rarely ever the best big man or even the second best big man on the court. He's been struggling mightily lately, so now is the time to deal him. The Knicks will be dumb enough to deal Melo for Love, Melo will approve, and the Cavs will get the 'fucking playmaker' that Lebron wants. We all know Lebron calls the shots, we'll see what he decides to do.
When the NBA all-star starters were announced for each conference it wasn't long before everyone realized someone was missing from the starting lineup in the western conference. Russell Westbrook, the biggest snub in the history of all star voting, and players around the league on social media expressed their shock with the situation. It's clear why players would be shocked that Westbrook isn't an All-Star, I mean up until this point he's been the MVP, he's averaging a triple double, and he leads the league in scoring. If that doesn't earn you a spot in the starting lineup of the all-star game then nothing will, there's literally nothing more he can do on the court to prove his worth. He did well enough in the player and media vote, but he lacked in fan vote, which carries the most weight unfortunately, so he just missed out as a starter. Proving that it's a complete popularity contest basically, the players and media are just their to ensure players like Zaza Pachulia don't get voted into the starting lineups by fans. Westbrook has every reason to be upset because I don't think anyone can make a case for why he doesn't deserve to be a starter, but he says he doesn't care at all. Westbrook stated when asked about not making it the starting lineup, " I don't play for all-star bids. I play to win championships." As a huge Russell Westbrook supporter, I couldn't be happier to hear him utter those words, he's stepping into that Kobe Bryant mindset, he's the villain now, and the fan vote showed that. He's not worried about focusing on getting retweets on twitter like all these guys, he's in the lab working his craft, and winning ball games for his team night in and night out. Westbrook isn't everyone's cup of tea, but I see a bit of the black mamba within him, which leaves me confident about his future in this league. He's here to win rings not win popularity concerts,
The highly anticipated regular season rematch between the Warriors and the Cavaliers took place last night in Oracle Arena. The first matchup of the season between these rivals took place on Christmas day, a game in which the Warriors blew a 4th quarter lead, and watched as Kyrie Irving hit the game winning shot once again. A loss like that had to leave a sour taste in the mouth's of the Golden State players. It certainly looked that way last night with the passion and heart that Golden State played with. Cavaliers on the other hand looked like they were geared up to play just another regular season game, that's where I think they went wrong. The Warriors had lost 4 straight to the Cavs going back to last year's NBA Finals matchup, so the Warriors absolutely needed to win this one at home against the Cavs to restore some confidence. I'm not saying the Cavs needed to win this game because obviously no matter what they have the upper hand since Golden State blew a 3-1 lead, but they really could've kicked the Warriors in the nuts if they were to beat them for a 5th straight time. Unfortunately, that was not the case, what's even more unfortunate, the way the game actually played out.
From the opening tip to the final buzzer the Warriors absolutely dominated the Cavaliers. I mean it was never close, even when the score was 0-0 the Warriors had the intensity advantage from the start, and it showed. The Warriors offensively in the first half of this game were dominate, so dominate I've never been so awe-inspired by a group of 5 guys playing basketball. That is extremely high praise from someone that hates everything about the Warriors with a burning passion. The passing was crisp, the movement without the ball was outstanding, and the Warriors ability to find and hit open shots was impeccable. Truly amazed watching them absolutely dismantle the Cavaliers attempt at playing defense. Lebron James usually know for being the best transition player in the game was bested by Kevin Durant last night as he led the charge for the Warriors in transition most of the night. Warriors were playing great basketball, building a huge lead, and that's when things began to get a little chippy.
Midway through the second quarter Lebron was dribbling up the court on a fastbreak, Kevin Durant was sliding to step in front, and as Lebron went to change direction he caught a clothesline from hell from Draymond Green. Lebron added a little bit of his acting flair to it, making it look far more dramatic, but nonetheless it was still a flagrant foul by definition, and I think Draymond knew exactly what he was doing. I don't think he cared that he was going to get a flagrant against him, I think he just wanted to hit Lebron with a tough foul to send a message, and ultimately I believe it worked. He wanted to show the Warriors ain't soft, I don't even know if that was necessary with the suffocating defense KD and Draymond were playing last night, along with the 15 point lead after just one quarter, but this is Draymond we're talking about, he's not the brightest light in the chandelier. All around I believe last night was the best I ever seen the Warriors play, it also might've been the worst I've ever seen the Cavs play, so ultimately I don't know what to take away from this game. Did the Cavs play awful simply because the Warriors were that good, or was it just one of those nights where the other team doesn't miss, your team gets discouraged, and it all falls apart. That very well could've been the case, all I know is I wouldn't cling to this game as a look ahead to what's in store for the future. For one, we all know playoff basketball is a different animal and brings a different intensity level out of everyone. Secondly, it's not very often that the team you're playing against will shoot 15% higher than you from the field, just so happened it was one of those nights where the Warriors couldn't miss. Cavs still have the edge in this rivalry, even after an embarrassing blowout loss like this. I mean how embarrassing is this in comparison to blowing a 3-1 lead in the finals. Exactly, Lebron James, Kyrie Irving, and the rest of the Cleveland Cavaliers will bounce back from this ugly loss no problem.
If you didn't think the Knicks season could get any worse, last night proved you wrong, because it got a lot worse. The Knicks have now lost 10 of their last 11 and seem to be free falling into the bottom of the eastern conference. A team quite familiar with being at the bottoms of the eastern conference is the Sixers. They've basically spent the past 5 years there, but last night it looks like the tides are beginning to change. The Sixers finally seem to be improving and looking like a team with a future, meanwhile the Knicks could not be anymore lost in their own dysfunction. The ending was so fitting too, Knicks looked like they were going to squeak it out, live to fight another day, and then BANG! T.J. McConnell with the dagger to every Knicks fans heart. All hope is dead, your season is over Knicks fans.
Let me start off by saying in no way shape or form will I say the Knicks did anything positive last night. Yeah Melo dropped 28 points, but he didn't play defense, rebound, or pass. Derrick Rose is the only PG that gets like 4 assists and that's a good game for him, isn't he supposed to be the facilitator of the offense, yet almost never gets more than 5 assists. That'll lead to winning basketball I'm sure. Porzingis played bad, Noah played worse, and Lee was irrelevant as usual. The Knicks continued to be atrocious and if you weren't a believer before last night than you're certainly a believer now, like you can't lose to the Sixers and expect to be respected. With that being said, the Sixers have been showing up big time lately, the energy in the building is different, and you can thank Joel Embiid for that. Yeah the rest of the guys are playing good too, but Embiid has changed the culture in Philadelphia with this whole "trust the process" mumbojumbo. Philly is actually more likely to make the playoffs than the Knicks at this point, which is just so sad.
From super team to super bust in less than 3 months, what an embarrassment this organization has become. They signed all these washed up stars so they could finally make the playoffs so the Phil Jackson project wouldn't look as much like a failure as it has been, and the Knicks can't even make the playoffs in the weak eastern conference. Instead the future is now suffering because Porzingis's growth is being stunted by ball hogs like Rose and Melo. Noah is going to eat up $18 Mil in cap space each year now for the next 4 years even though he is useless. Oh yeah and Melo is still here for what seems to be forever, so the Knicks future isn't looking any better, and the present is even worse than expected. James Dolan needs to say fuck you to Phil Jackson while proceeding to fire him, Trade Melo, Rose, and whoever else he can, and try to start fresh because whatever this circus act is going on in New York it ain't an entertaining one.
It all began on July 22nd, 2016. The New York Knicks had just traded for Derrick Rose and signed Joakim Noah, Brandon Jennings, and Courtney Lee in the offseason. Knicks fans were pretty optimistic about the upcoming season, I mean at least Kurt Rambis was no longer the coach and your point guard wasn't Jose Calderon anymore, so they kinda had to be, right? Well, regardless of what anyone else thought about the Knicks, Derrick Rose on July 22nd declared the Knicks a 'Super Team'. Why he would do this? No one knows, but anyone with a functioning brain knew the Knicks best case scenario was a 3 or 4 seed in the East, and even that was stretching it. More realistically it looked like the Knicks would be playoff bound, but not a top 4 seed, which is completely fine after the atrocity they've been the last two seasons. Playoffs would've been nice for Knicks fans to experience, after all they haven't been to the playoffs in 2 years in an awfully weak conference. Finally they had something to look forward to, finally Phil Jackson came through for the fans brinining in some big name talent, and it was all gonna be so amazing. Then reality happened.
This whole Knicks season was more hype than actual belief in the team being good. Be honest with yourselves Knicks fans, did you honestly think taking 2/5 of the Bulls starting lineup was going to make you elite. Okay, if the Knicks had the Brandon Jennings, Joakim Noah, Derrick Rose, Courtney Lee, and Carmelo Anthony of 3 years ago I'd say "holy shit this team is actually fucking amazing." Too bad it's 2017, these players are all on the back nine of their careers, and obviously the players ego's weren't accounted for when they were brought in either. Derrick Rose, doesn't even show up to the game on Monday, doesn't tell nobody, just doesn't show up. Staff members of the Knicks showed up to his apartment to make sure nothing tragic happened to him because they had no idea where he was. Next day, he just says family emergency, and all is good. Fined $500, doesn't show up to a game, no text, no call, no tweet, nothing, and he gets hit with a $500 fine. That's hysterical. $500 to Derrick Rose is a joke. Onto the next "Superstar", of the Knicks Carmelo Anthony, who leads the league in ejections. He got ejected once again on Monday after he didn't feel like playing anymore. The Knicks have lost 9 of their last 10, Phil Jackson doesn't ever confront the media about the complete spin out happening to his team, and players have no accountability. The Knicks are a total dumpster fire right now, but should we really be surprised? I mean we all knew Derrick Rose isn't the same player he was before the injuries, we all knew he was a head case from all the shit that happened in Chicago, and you thought all of that was just going to change? Not realistic. As for Melo, I've defended him his entire tenure in New York, but enough is enough with this guy he say's one thing and does another. He wants to be a team player, but then I see him disrupting the flow of the offense night in and night out. Says he wants to win in New York, yet is consistently quitting on the team like he did Monday night, and like he did last season.
The Knicks need to burn it down, burn it all down, except for Kristaps Porzingis, obviously. Melo will never be a winner, Derrick Rose is done in New York after this year, and Noah, Jennings, and Lee all need to go. Although no one will want Noah with that enormous contract that Phil Jackson gave him, so he'll be here until 2020. That brings me to my next point. This is all your faults Knick fans, you have no one to blame but yourselves because you begged, cried, and pleaded for months to get this. Phil made all these moves in the offseason to shut you the hell up, shame on him for giving into the media and the fans, but be careful what you wish for Knick fans because you got it.