HOOPSWORLD Week in Review
Ray Allen: Celtics Not Comfortable
By Stephen Litel
There are precious few games left before the playoffs begin and the Boston Celtics aren’t comfortable. At a time when teams are gearing up for the postseason, the Celtics are 5-7 in their last 12 games.
"We still have a lot of work," Ray Allen told HOOPSWORLD. "I’m not comfortable and I think even if we didn’t make trades, we still had injuries where we were still playing catch up. I’m not comfortable."
It used to seem easy for the Celtics, but that has changed since the trade deadline shook the team to their collective core.
Ranking The Top 2011 Free Agents
By Jason Fleming
With the 2010-11 NBA season winding down it’s time to take a look at the top free agent prospects of 2011.
Caveat: There may not be 2011 free agency anytime soon. The Collective Bargaining Agreement expires at midnight on June 30th. Until a new deal is reached no free agents can sign new contracts (they can extend beforehand). The rules these free agents will sign under (contract lengths, exception values, maximums) are as yet undefined.
But hey, when free agency DOES happen, these are the top ten free agents at each position! (Find the full list here. If an option exists, it’s mentioned, and if the player can be restricted because his team makes a Qualifying Offer by June 30th, that’s mentioned as well.)
5 Steps: Fixing The Cavs
By Joel Brigham
Sometimes it might take a while, but there’s always a way to fix a bad team. Yes, the Cleveland Cavaliers were historically bad in 2010-2011, but there have been far worse teams transformed into something respectable in the past, and it could happen again with the Cavs.
That said, this is probably going to take a while. As we’ll see in the rebuilding plan that follows, "youth" is an operative word in this process, and collecting that young talent and giving it time to grow takes time.
But Cavs fans shouldn’t care how long it takes. All they need to know is it’s possible.
5 Steps: Fixing The Wizards
By Lang Greene
Competing for a spot in the 2011 postseason were only the dreams of the most optimistic Washington Wizards fans. The reality of the situation was the team would likely toil through another twenty something win campaign as it continues to rebuild for the future.
Through 74 games of the 2011 season, the Wizards have been mathematically eliminated from playoff contention and currently reside in the cellar of the competitive Southeast Division.
Whether it’s been the constant roster turnover, injuries or the normal growing pains associated with possessing an abundance of youth the Wizards haven’t been able to sustain consistent momentum throughout the year.
Redd Back In Business
By Derek Page
After a lengthy rehabilitation and recovery following surgery to repair two torn ligaments in his left knee, Milwaukee Bucks’ guard Michael Redd relished his opportunity to be back on the court Monday night against the Charlotte Bobcats.
Two seasons ago, playing against the Sacramento Kings on Jan. 24, 2009, Redd sustained a torn ACL and MCL in his left knee that put him on the shelf for the remainder of the 2008-2009 season. Less than one year later, against the Los Angeles Lakers on Jan. 10, 2010, Redd’s surgically repaired left knee gave out on him once more. Over 14 grueling months later, Redd is finally back in a Bucks’ uniform.
After being listed as active for the first time all season Saturday against the Chicago Bulls, Redd got his first taste of live-game action Monday night in Charlotte.
If The NBA Playoffs Started Today
By Mark Nugent
With the final day of the regular season less than two weeks away (April 13), let’s take a look at what would be the current playoff matchups in each conference if the season ended today.
Note: All seedings accurate as of Thursday afternoon, March 31st.
The Eastern Conference:
(1) Chicago Bulls (54-20) vs (8) Indiana Pacers (34-42)
Season Series: Bulls up 3-1.
Whether the Bulls face the Indiana Pacers, Charlotte Bobcats, or Milwaukee Bucks it is unlikely to make much difference. The Bulls have a matchup advantage at virtually every position and they have the current MVP front-runner in Derrick Rose. Regardless of which team the Bulls face, it is hard to imagine this series going more than five games.
Check out HOOPSWORLD’s March Madness coverage
Make sure you check out our NCAA Tournament coverage. Yannis Koutroupis, Luke Byrnes, Tommy Dee and Coach Anthony Macri break down the latest happenings. Here’s the link.
Have questions for Mark Nugent? Be sure and drop by HOOPSWORLD on Wednesdays at 5PM Eastern for his weekly basketball chat.