Why You Are Wrong About LaVar Ball

I assume everyone will hate me after this but I don’t give a flying F-ety F.  So here we go….

Let me start by saying I may not totally agree with everything that LaVar rattles out of his mouth however I am here to do what no one else seems to do and that is defend this guy.  Now many of you may not know but there are three pretty, ehhhhh actually 2, talented kids named Lonzo, some middle kid who sucks, and then Lamello Ball who dropped 92 points on kids in a high school game.  They are of course overshadowed by the man in all the headlines by, their father, LaVar Ball.  I am actually pretty sick of the exposure he is getting already but it made me think this guy is a f-ing genius.  Take your hater-blockers off and look at it from the other side…..

I think LaVar is not as dumb/bad as people think.  He is taking a unknown route to build his brand BBB, Big Baller Brand, by not just signing off to Nike, Adidas, whoever the else makes basketball shoes.  Can we just stop for a second and think of how genius that marketing ploy is?  If you wear my stuff you are a Big Baller.  If you don’t you are a nobody.  That is elitist as it get in terms of ego and let’s be honest people eat that s^%& up.  Love that by the way.  While I do think that is dumb to initially turn down the guaranteed money and then just parlay Lonzo’s success into BBB, I got to give him credit on this point because the man knows how to market BBB.  Surely you have let it cross your mind that he says stupid things like “I would be Jordan in his prime” to create the headline.  He makes that kind of comment and it’s all over Facebook, Twitter, TV, morning shows, and radio outlets everywhere and guess what is all over the news?  LaVar wearing/talking about his kids brand.  FREE ADVERTISING.  I would love to see how much Nike or Adidas would have to pay to get that kind of free airtime.  That is a major companies wet dream.  This guy gets it all for free.  And people eat it up.  He is the talk around every water cooler at work.  Oh and did I mention he even found a way to shut the loudest guy on TV, Stephen A Smith, up?  Yep….

People always think of the pressure LaVar is putting on his kids but have you thought about it from the other side.  Think of how much pressure he is taking off?  For example the middle kid who sucks he is getting a full ride to UCLA….UCLA!  One of the most prestigious college basketball universities in the country.   If he didn’t negotiate that 3 for 1 (you get all kids or no kids) deal with UCLA do you think that kid would be getting that full ride?  Hell no.  Instead, he would be grinding to get into some lower D1 or D2 school getting pennies on the dollar compared to what that scholarship is worth.  I remember when I was in school I was grinding to get into FSU (insert some Gator joke about FSU being a shit school go ahead).  Anyways, that was a lot of stress.  These last two kids don’t have anything to worry about!  Let’s play the hypothetical and if Lonzo did only want to play for the Lakers or did want his own shoe brand he hasn’t had to be the one to come say it and look like that cocky 18-19 year old kid talking game he hasn’t earned.  LaVar does that for them!  He plays the villain.  I actually hear how many times that people go “Man I feel bad for these kids that they have such a shitty dad”.  Even people feel for the kids!  LaVar takes all of the criticism and deflects it off of his kids.  Is that not the definition of a good dad?  In the coaching world you are lauded for that, but this man is crucified?  Hypocritical.

Image result for lavar Ball

LaVar didn’t put his kids in AAU ball because he didn’t want them to play with kids who were already studs.  He wanted them to play with kids who had lesser ability so he could get his boys to raise the abilities of the other kids he was playing with.  Don’t bring up the younger brother dropping 92 because that was a high school game.  Not AAU.  Instead LaVar had his kids playing against older kids at a young age.  11 years old Lonzo was playing against 15 and 16 year old players.  I don’t care how talented you are go pick out a 16 year old high school kid and pick out some dweeb 11 year old and there is a HUGE difference in height, weight, maturity, skill.  He could have been playing against some of the same aged kids beating up on some bum AAU teams in the summer but instead he was getting his A$$ handed to by older kids.  You grow up quick like that.

Finally, LaVar Ball has managed to raise three, from what we can tell so far, pretty well rounded kids.  Take LaVar out of this, I have never heard Lonzo say anything from HIS mouth that seemed outlandish or crazy.  He is a pretty well-mannered kid and soft spoken which is crazy given the fact that he is 19 and has been a superstar since birth. We don’t hear him saying his teammates sucked at UCLA.   I don’t hear him coming out and saying he wants to ONLY go to the Lakers.  Sure does he WANT to go to the Lakers?  Absolutely, he is a hometown kid.  What kid wouldn’t want to go to their childhood team?  If I was a high school football stud I wouldn’t even need a visit to another school because it would be FSU by a mile.  Bucs for NFL, Magic for NBA, Swansea for soccer.  No brainer.

Image result for fsu kid flicking off

Look there is 98% more people hating on LaVar but I tend to think it’s a bit of wizardry.  I commend him for being so different in a world of sheep.  I don’t know how this story will end but god I can’t wait.

#HambinoOut

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The Most Exciting NBA Teams No One Talks About

Keep paying your big money prices to watch teams like the Heat, Lakers, and Knicks but ill buy the cheaper tickets and watch some of the most exciting basketball going on in the NBA.  Sure are the Heat very entertaining to watch?  Sure they are.  But when your like me you’re on a budget I like to “take my talents” to an entertaining but not financially killer game.  For you east coasters out there let me awaken you to some of the most entertaining and young teams in the NBA.  These teams are the Phoenix Suns, Portland Trailblazers and Golden State Warriors.

No one really expected much from the Phoenix Suns coming into this year the leagues fourth worst team at 25-57 and last place team in the western conference.  But this year is different.  After hiring Jeff Hornacek to be their coach in the off-season the team started to rebuild.  Sure was Hornacek the sexy name that everyone in Phoenix was jumping out of his or her seats for? Heck no.  And this is important because often teams with mediocre fan bases or as I like to say fair-weather fans will go out and look for the biggest name possible.  But lets be honest going out and getting the right guy to win early and build up the youth is far more important than a big name.  Wins translate into butts in seats, which translates to money, which translates to happy bosses.  Good call front office.  Hornacek wasted no time cleaning up the past mess left by his predecessors. He wanted to go young and high tempo.  So his first order of business was trading Luis Scola an aging but productive 33-year-old power forward for Gerald Green Miles Plumlee and a 2014 first round pick.  Neither the Phoenix Suns front office nor I are Charlie Sheen or anything but we can all agree….Winning! They then traded Matin Gortat to the Washington Wizards for an expiring contract in Emeka Okafor and a 2014 First Round draft pick.  Are you catching what the suns are doing here?  Acquiring draft picks for next years loaded class. Obviously the biggest move the Suns made was trading for Eric Bledsoe.  The team finally has their superstar they can build around.  Not only does he bring offensive skills the guy can play defense too.  He combined with Goran Dragic combine for a lethal offensive fast break game giving the Suns an exciting product on the court.  Sitting at 20-13 the Suns are very much in the mix for a playoff spot in the West.  Regardless if they make it or not they are going in the right direction.  Not to mention they are EXCITING to watch.  Because the team rotates 10 deep with 8 of those players averaging 23 minutes a game or more and none averaging more than 34 this team is deep.  Which plays right into their game plan.  Go, go, go, and go some more.  By the fourth quarter teams find themselves with hands on their hips and the young suns are asking when the second game is going to be.  Its like if they were in an intramural league back in college. But then again some of these kids are just out of college.  The team averages 103.2 points a game, good for 9th in the NBA, and gets up and like I said get up and down the court quite regularly.  #3 team on Hambinos bang for your buck!

We head northwest for our #2 bang for you buck.  That would be your Portland Trailblazers.  People that don’t watch much NBA are probably thinking what they heck how are you going to start your article with the Suns and go next to the Portland Trailblazers?  Aren’t they called the jailblazers?  Well let me tell you the Blazers are far removed from the jailblazer days of old.  This team, much like the suns, are young and refreshing to watch.  I don’t know about you but I was starting to get tired of watching the Lakers and Celtics go at it in an epic 78-72 game.  No no no these guys don’t roll that way.  The Blazers channel their inner T-Pain and

they go up, down

blazers aint got not problems scoring all them buckets

Trying to see whats up now

They can score like this all day it aint nothing

Sorry had to do it.  I’m back.  They average 109 points a game.  That is good for the best scoring team in the NBA.  Which is crazy because the team isn’t that deep top to bottom. Something I will address shortly if there is a weak spot on the team. But lets get back to praising the team. Either way this team is exciting no matter how you dice it up.  Lets start with their young stud point guard Damian Lillard.  After winning Rookie of the Year last year he didn’t waste any time getting better.  It seems that every time I’m putting on Sportscenter the guy is making some kind of game winning shot.  The stage is not too big for the youngster.  Let me throw these stats at you when comparing him to some of his other NBA point guard brethren.  In games the NBA has defined “close” which they’ve either been ahead or behind by five points or fewer in the final five minutes Lillard has risen to the occasion. He leads the league with 55 points under the aforementioned parameters while shooting a remarkable 50 percent overall and 50 percent from beyond the arc, according to NBA.com.

Player

Points

FGM

FGA

FG%

Damian Lillard

55

15

30

50%

Kyrie Irving

50

15

43

34.9%

James Harden

48

9

26

34.6%

Arron Afflalo

47

13

32

40.6%

Eric Bledsoe

46

14

32

43.8%

Not to mention lets look at what he does in the final 30 seconds of a game one possession game.

Player

Points

FGM

FGA

FG%

Damian Lillard

14

4

5

80%

Russell Westbrook

11

3

3

100%

Arron Afflalo

9

2

5

40%

Jrue Holiday

9

3

4

75%

Michael Carter-Williams

8

2

4

50%

Not to shabby eh?  The guy is a stud and is someone that if he stays focused is bound to be an NBA superstar.  Shoot even Kobe is respecting the youngster by tweeting that fans should vote for Lillard and not Kobe for the all-star game.  Now people will be saying of course they should because Bryant hasn’t played really at all this year but don’t forget Yao Ming made countless All Star games without playing a game so it happens.  Not to mention Kobe never likes to admit anything that puts him down so for him to say this is impressive. But as we know you don’t have the 5th best record in the league without having a stud wingman and that wingman is LaMarcus Aldridge. You want to talk about an underrated player?  This man has to be at the top of the list.  When healthy all the guy does is produce 20-10 nights.  He unlike his previous Trailblazer big men (Bonzi Wells, Rasheed Wallace, Zach Randolph) conducts his business quietly.  And unfortunately for him playing in a small market on the west coast doesn’t help.  But the guy is a stud.  He boasts a top 20 PER (Player efficiency rating) this year and provides to presence down low to give his team one of the best point guard big man combos in the NBA.  Im going to give a quick shout out to Wesley Matthews and Nicolas Batum because even though Lillard and Aldridge get the attention these guys can ball out too.  Both players post a 2:1 assist to turnover ratio which is something you always want in role players.  Both players can extend the court with their three point ability.  And both players can play defense, Batum with his lengthy frame makes it tough for defenders to shoot over him and Matthews with his ability to stay with players off the dribble. People will always say fast break offensive based teams don’t win when it matters but this team has the third best record versus teams with winning records only behind Oklahoma City and Miami.  Not to mention this team went toe to toe with both. They beat OKC and lost on a last second three pointer by Chris Bosh versus Miami. Now if there is a weak spot in this team to me its their depth.  They really only go 7 deep and if someone were to get hurt it could cripple this team.  Look for them to address this with some role players closer to the trade deadline.  This team could be dangerous.  #2 team on Hambinos bang for your buck.

But there can only be one love for Hambino and that was stolen during the NBA playoffs last year.  That belongs to the lads from Golden State and the splash brothers.  I was privileged enough to watch the Warriors play the Suns earlier in the year and let me tell you it was a high paced exciting game throughout.  I was sitting in an all you can drink and eat seat but I couldnt get myself to leave my seat to go get the beer and food.  Its just that entertaining.  By the way by no means am I an NBA lover but I do like to watch fun teams.  The Warriors sputtered early with newly acquired Andre Iguodala battling injuries early in the season but since his return they have been on fire.  They have won 10 in a row coming into tonight and they really seems to finding their form from the end of the season last year.  Obviously its easy to focus on Stephen Curry on why this team is successful but Mark Jackson’s boys have skill, depth, and now experience to make this team a formidable force in the Western Conference.  But we have to start with Steph Curry.  The guy is an animal.  But it’s a different kind of animal.  Hes more the Lebron James animal rather than the Kobe animal.  Curry goes about it very lackadaisical and laid back fashion rather than high strung and in your face style.  Steph the kind of superstar that always has a smile on his face.  I don’t know but for some reason I find it refreshing to see superstars like that because I feel like I’m watching someone that truly loves what he’s doing and it really is just a game to him.  But regardless if I like him or not the guy can flat ball out.  He ranks in the top 15 in PER.  Curry is averaging 23 points and 10 assists.  So its not like the guys just jacking up threes the whole game.  He can dish it out too.  With the assists he also picks pockets averaging 1.8 steals a game.  So the guy can do it on both ends of the court.  His other splash brother Klay Thompson isn’t to bad either.  He is the perfect complement to Stephen Curry because both players shoot the long ball well.  Defenders cant start to gang up on Curry when he’s about to shoot because of Thompson’s ability to knock down any shot.  If they do however load up on Curry, Thompson is the beneficiary of Curry’s vision and will always end up with the ball in a good position.  Analysts think this could be the best backcourt in the NBA and I tend to agree with them. Both of them are shooting 40% from behind the arc and that’s nothing to laugh about when they combine to shoot 15 a game between the two. The thing I like though other than the splash brothers is its not just about them.  They have built a good team around their young superstars.  The aforementioned Andre Iguodala has provided this team with the defensive presence they need when they are going to go up versus a high powered wing player ie. Kevin Durant. Not to mention Curry and Thompson seemed to have sprinkled their magic three point shooting dust on Andre who has one of the top three point percentages going in the NBA at 46%.  But I think the lynch pin in this team is David Lee.  People forgot he went out of the playoffs last year injured and they still found a way to give the Spurs all they can handle.  He can score on the post and get the rebounds alongside his playing partner Andrew Bogut.  They’re the grit to the baby faced Warriors.  Lee a 20-10 power forward gives this team the inside outside game they want to play.  And hes still athletic enough to get up and down the court when the number 7 scoring team in the league is playing out of the fast break.  Oh did I mention they have two young studs in Harrison Barnes and Draymond Green?  Yes college basketball fans the Warriors have these guys on their bench! These guys would be starters on pretty much every team in the eastern conference without question.  Their ability to go 8-10 deep makes this team a very exciting team to watch and to keep an eye on in a 7 game series with much older teams come playoff time. That’s why I think this team is going to make waves come playoff time and why they’re Hambinos #1 bang for your buck.