September 16, 2015
THE EUPHORIA over the firing of general manager Ruben Amaro seems to suggest that he is the lone culprit for the Phillies downfall. Not so fast! While no one will ever mistake Ruben Amaro for Branch Rickey, and he certainly deserves some of the blame, he might be taking too much heat for the Phillies downfall. It was management that forced him to sign Utley, Howard and Rollins to long-term deals. By the way, no one complained at the time because these players were all performing well.
September 15, 2015 |
The death of 76ers great Moses Malone rocked the sports world Sunday. A ferocious rebounder, the Hall of Famer known as the Chairman of the Boards was mourned far and wide. Former and current NBA players took to social media, released statements, and expressed grief over losing the three-time MVP who led the Sixers to their last NBA title in 1983. "I am extremely saddened to hear of Moses' passing this morning. This is extremely tough for me. I am completely in shock and words can't express the pain and loss I am feeling right now," Dominique Wilkins said in a statement.
August 29, 2015 |
Amid massive expectations, Darryl Dawkins arrived in Philadelphia via Orlando at the age of 18. He was a giant man and a gentleman with a mind so creative that he was able to invent a fictional planet and write poetry that described the otherworldly strength he used to shatter two fiberglass backboards in a little less than a month.. "Darryl Dawkins is the father of power dunking," Shaquille O'Neal once said about the man who was known as "Chocolate Thunder," "Double D," and other image-evoking nicknames.
June 22, 2015 |
IF YOU ARE LIKE ME, you were fixated in watching the NBA Finals. Although it wasn't great basketball from a technical standpoint, there were many amazing story lines. Led by the incredible LeBron James, the Cleveland Cavaliers won two out of the first three games, and actually should have won Game 1, which they lost to the Golden State Warriors in overtime. Once Kyrie Irving went out in Game 1, Cleveland essentially was left with a bunch of second-stringers to play with LeBron. Nonetheless, he elevated them almost by force of will, and players such as Timofey Mozgov and Matthew Dellavedova rose way above their skill level and helped the Cavs surge into the lead.
June 17, 2015 |
SHORTLY AFTER the Warriors defeated the Cavaliers to take a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven NBA Finals, LeBron James made a proclamation: "I feel confident because I'm the best player in the world - that simple. " It is a quote that will follow him forever. It is also very un-James-like. You've heard the adage there's no "I" in team? Well there's no "I" in James either. The 11 time All-Star and four-time NBA MVP isn't one to gloat. After the news conference, Ken Berger of CBSSports.com mentioned that very fact to James, who agreed.
June 15, 2015 |
I didn't leave my heart in San Francisco. The Philadelphia Warriors, without my consent, took it there. For me, the Warriors' sudden and unexpected departure for California in 1962 was a sting as sharp as death's. And while healing came with time, wisdom did not. I didn't understand the move then, and, 53 years later, I still don't. This week, seeing and hearing the Warriors' name so often during these 2015 NBA Finals, I had to wonder again why my beloved basketball franchise abandoned me. If, as we like to believe, Philadelphia is a basketball town, then the Warriors should have been a bedrock civic institution, like TastyKake or the Museum of Art. Instead, despite an unusually successful history, a hometown superstar who happened to be the world's greatest player, a supporting cast teeming with Philadelphia talent, and attendance that was average at worst, they left.
June 12, 2015 |
I AM NOT completely sure in what context to put LeBron James' efforts in the 2015 NBA Finals. I have been courtside when Michael Jordan, Tim Duncan, Shaquille O'Neal, Dwyane Wade and Dirk Nowitzki were spectacular, while leading their teams to NBA championships. I watched Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Moses Malone and Hakeen Olajuwon dominate in the Finals. I have never seen anything like what James has done with the Cleveland Cavaliers through the first three games of this series against the Golden State Warriors.
June 7, 2015 |
THE NBA FINALS began Thursday night with the Golden State Warriors winning a thriller in overtime over LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Finals can often be incredibly memorizing and a great spectacle. As I watched Steph Curry and the Warriors battle King James, my thoughts drifted back to the last two times the 76ers played in the NBA Finals: 1983 and 2001. The excitement throughout the region was palpable. The city paid rapt attention to every game, every play, every triumph, and every loss.
June 5, 2015 |
THE NBA FINALS begin tonight, in case you've been in the deep jungles of the Amazon the past 10 weeks. And for the fifth straight time, LeBron James will be there. But this time, unlike his previous four trips with the Miami Heat, he is the underdog, once again bringing with him an army outmanned by its opponent, the Golden State Warriors. While LeBron is built like Goliath, he's arguably the David here. And league MVP Steph Curry, the impish assassin, looks more like a David but carries enough weight to be the Goliath.
June 5, 2015 |
HARD TO BELIEVE, or maybe not, but 31 NBA champions have been crowned since the 76ers won the title in 1983 with their four-game sweep of the Los Angeles Lakers. Only eight teams have made up those 31 champions - Lakers (eight), Chicago (six), San Antonio (five), Detroit, Miami and Boston (three each), Houston (two) and Dallas (one) - while the winner of this year's Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors will make it nine in 32. Cleveland has never won an NBA title and the Warriors haven't held the hardware since 1975.