Listen to MoNeYBaLL 24 NBA Podcast Featuring Opinionated MJ by Opinionated Media on #SoundCloud
Listen to MoNeYBaLL 24 NBA Podcast Featuring Opinionated MJ by Opinionated Media on #SoundCloud
By: Opinionated MJ (Michael Tolliver Jr)
I thank the basketball gods. I thank you Melo, for staying ready and staying focused. I’m a huge fan. I grew tired of the narrative. I grew tired of the media. I’ve been waiting to see you have the opportunity to prove everyone wrong. We live in the land where second chances are abundant. What a time to be alive to see you playing, starting, contributing, and it has even awarded you the Player of the Week honor over Luka Doncic and James Harden.
I still don’t know the truth of what happened in Houston. I could see you being instrumental in helping put the Warriors away after KD went down. Instead, you were at home. They needed more scoring. More heat check players. Harden always seems to fold in big moments. I don’t see you not talking a shot for the final 8 minutes, 5 minutes. I don’t see it. It’s not who you are. You’ve always gone down fighting.
You are the only player who wanted to go to the Knicks and try to bring them to prominence. To me, your only career mistake was not waiting for your contact to run out before you went to NYC. You guys would’ve been a powerhouse. Considering the Big 3 Celtics and Heat were around, Kobe was still around, Spurs, the sudden ascension from the Mavs in 2011, and the fact that you were only awarded one star level talent in Amare Stoudamire, and later Jason Kidd, you still made due with what you had. You made Shumpert & JR Smith look better than they’ve ever looked. You fell short against Indiana before Roy Hibbert decided to go fishing individually.
I’m happy to have you back and I’m sure the fans are as well. I’ve been watching. I’ve been hearing the chants. Most importantly, I’ve been watching you close. Keep it up! This game is about efficiency now. You are still a perfect fit for this game. All because you have a jumper than never evades a man. I got tired of hearing “Marshmallow”. I’m so happy to see you in shape and taking the bull by the horns. Much success to you Melo. #RipCity
Featuring NilClassic, Steve, and Opinionated MJ
#nba #Zion #Knicks #Lakers #KD #DubNation #Warrios #okcthunder #StephCurry #LeBron and more
Listen to MoNeYBaLL NBA Podcast Episode 19 Featuring Steve, NilClassic, and Opinionated MJ by Opinionated Media #np on #SoundCloud
Episode 6 with Opinionated MJ & NilClassic
LeBron, Kyrie, Celtics and more!
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By: Opinionated MJ
NBA Media Day Podcast
By: Opinionated MJ & NilClassic
Stats vs Effect
LeBron vs Kobe
And everything NBA!
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By: Opinionated MJ
It was all on you KD.
Congratulations to Kevin Durant and the Golden State Warriors! They are your 2016-17 NBA Champions! Redemption, revenge, and recovery all wrapped in one! Kevin Durant has endured a high level of scrutiny and came out on top. He faced a lot of friction from the media, especially from a few high-level media types right before Game 5. Debate that! If it were not for his injury, I don’t think this Warriors team would’ve had the bench ready to go to war with Cleveland. They didn’t band together until KD went down. Steph didn’t find himself until KD went down. Draymond Green didn’t tap into another level again until KD Went down. Let’s not mention the fact that even I believed Golden State would fall off defensively. They posted league highs in efficiency this year, not only on offense but defense as well. How? KD.
Coming into the year, KD was hated for going to the team that ousted him. Now that he’s got the title and he will have a ring, let me break this down for you. If KD opted to stay in OKC, he would’ve had to deal with finding out who was the #1 option with Russell Westbrook. He would’ve been without Serge Ibaka who I though enabled them to take down the Warriors and Spurs. With that said, had he stayed in OKC, he would’ve still had to see both the Warriors and Spurs in the playoffs on the way to seeing LeBron in Cleveland. What would’ve been his odds? Be honest. NO ONE THINKS KD COULD’VE BEATEN LEBRON WITH OKC! That’s a fact. Doesn’t mean it couldn’t happen.
He coasted most of the year, trying to fit in early and not be imposing. Steph, Klay Thompson, Dray, everybody took a backseat to making him feel comfortable. Steve Kerr did a good job in putting a roster together after losing so many pieces to obtain Kevin Durant. Got to tip our hats to the Golden State Warriors organization. They brought in a few journeymen in David West, Matt Barnes late, Zaza Pachulia (the Kawhi killer), and even Javale McGee. McGee had a hard time staying on any teams’ roster since he and George Karl were split apart. This is the best I’ve seen him play since then. There’s no other team that would gamble on him. It paid dividends, especially in the first 2 games of this final.
No one is talking about how Andre Iguodala stepped up in KD’s absence either. We must, MUST, give this man respect for being willing to take a bench role for the better of the team overall. No one mentioned the Warriors depth as being a threat. Come on now. Livingston, Iggy, Barnes, West, McGhee? Throw Ian Clark and Patrick McCaw in there and you’ve got something that you can develop into something special indeed.
I want to give LeBron and Kyrie their due respect for carrying their team this far. They put it all on the line. I personally think they should’ve obtained some different pieces and I can imagine that half of this roster will be completely different going into the 2017 season. Maybe Carmelo, maybe Paul George, maybe Chris Paul, Dwayne Wade, even DeMarcus Cousins could end up here. They’re all in the rumors. My sleeper here is Blake Griffin. LeBron and Kyrie were scoring at will but did tire out and their team, their bench, just couldn’t give them enough of a cushion. I think Bogut would’ve paid dividends and may have been enough for Cleveland to win this series. The Cavs aren’t as far away from being as talented as this Warriors team. Don’t forget that. Be humble with this Championship, Warriors fans. Congratulations on another great season. I’m sure we’ll see you here next year. Currently, the only threat out west is Kawhi Leonard. The basketball gods shined down on you!
By: Opinionated MJ
The Eastern Folders Division
Who in the Eastern Conference can actually win a series against the Cleveland Cavaliers? My gut tells me that its not the Pacers, Celtics, Bucks, Raptors, or Hawks. They’ve all been considered so-called threats. Only thing is, they’ve all folded in the past or simply flared out when it was time to bring their A game in the playoffs. I’ll get into it a little for why I believe they all fold in prime time.
The Bucks don’t have enough experience to me. They are one piece away. Jabari Parker. They need their team in full health. Thats when I’ll consider them a true threat out east. No need to even talk about more. Yes, Giannis is the truth, but he’ll need that extra player to really be what he can be. It’s nothing like another player taking the pressure off of you. Nothing like it. Especially with what Parker brings to this team. Reminds me of a young Carmelo Anthony.
The Pacers simply don’t have enough experience. I think they need Myles Turner to become what he will become. At least a consistent 18 & 10 from him and that would do wonders for them. Plus, who really believes in a team that has Monta Ellis? Paul George already blew a game, he and CJ Miles, and then he continued to point fingers. Then we found out he was 0 for 20 in those situations anyway. He’s not even clutch enough to command the ball. Enough said.
The Celtics seem like the one who would burst through the wall and actually make it interesting. As we’ve seen through the first 2 games, they don’t really have anyone who can create for themselves outside of Thomas and Al Horford. They have enough defense but they haven’t even been able to stop Jimmy Butler, so we know they’re not stopping LeBron. I don’t forsee them making it out of this round now.
The Raptors… I’m very disappointed in Kyle Lowry. Knowing that going forward, he has the potential to have a meltdown at any given time. He’s not reliable enough to actually consider a true All-Star, that alone screams volumes to me. Demar Derozan on the other hand, he’s stepped into some mid-range bloodline only seen by a few greats. He just arrived there this season, so before I get too impressed, I’ll depend on his consistency over time. He is the only true reliable offensive option on this team. Meanwhile, Jonas, Serge, and Lowry are all here and there. They need a point guard who can really command the team and improve the other players all while being consistent himself. Chris Paul anyone?
Can the Wiz Reach The Cavs in the Conference Finals?
This is the presumed matchup going forward. I believe that they’ve been eliminated enough and they have enough playoff scars that they’ve built a foundation on. The only problem would be Bradley Beal being guarded so well that he’s taken off of his game and the only dependable player becoming John Wall. They have enough role players to push them ahead and to keep most opponents honest but I’m looking at the Bulls right now and they may have enough defense, scrappy play (at times) that they turn into transition buckets, and focus on execution that can put them over the top. I still consider the Wizards a roadblock, if not, the team that will meet Cleveland.
Can The Bulls Reach The Cavs in the Conference Finals?
I’ve been a fan of the way the Bulls began the season and also how they ended it. They now have a 2-0 lead over the #1 seeded Boston Celtics. Who would’ve knew? We watched the Celtics grind hard all season led by Isaiah Thomas who dazzled in many 4th quarters. I’ve been led to believe that the Celtics would’ve been formidable against the Cavs and the entire east until they fell flat towards the end of the season. Condolences to Mr. Thomas loss in his family. That aside, I truly believe that the Bulls are fully equipped and able to not only beat the Celtics but also make it to the Conference Finals against the Cavs. That alone would be scary.
The Bulls have Jimmy Butler, Dwayne Wade, and Rajon Rondo, all of which have been contenders, and champions in the past. They have alot of veteran leadership on this team between those 3 and that has been why they’ve been able to put together two great performances against the Celtics. Everybody forgot Wade has a playoff switch. I also don’t know why people try to write Rondo off as if he’s washed up. He’s the perfect pass-first point guard that many teams in the league need. It’s just he commands the ball and to be the centerpiece of your offense. That’s the only reason why many teams didn’t gamble on him. Collectively, I think they have enough to make it there. I think they can even matchup well against Washington. The Wizards would have to be on all cylinders and the Bulls would have to be flat on offense for them to put the Bulls away. What i’m noticing is that Wade, Rondo, and Butler have put their differences aside and have turned on playoff mode in order to succeed. They weren’t considered a threat to make the playoffs and now they’re the biggest threat out east. I don’t think I’m just speaking with excitement either. I’ve been watching them all season. They clicked at the perfect time and took it right into the Playoffs. Watch out.
This Episide covers the 2017 NBA Playoffs, the NBA MVP Race, the new developments with Carmelo Anthony & Phil Jackson, and a peek into the 2017 NBA Draft.
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I present to you the first podcast from Opinionated Basketball Minds. We’ve been hard at work and still have some kinks to work out. Nonetheless, I give you, 3 IN THE KEY! Featuring Opinionated MJ & Sean Legend!
Enjoy the first podcast!!!
By: Opinionated MJ
They forgot he was a winner…
I want to get right into criticising the ones who asked, “who wants Melo if even LeBron doesn’t want him?” I want to ask you, since when is LeBron the newly minted man of approval? Since when is it true that Melo isn’t an offensive all star? Since when did we just write him off? Correction, when did YOU write him off?
Did you not consider the fact that his organization is run by an owner who doesn’t even want to be held accountable for anything so he hired Phil Jackson to take up ALL the blame as this continues to go south for the Knicks organization? Did you realize that Phil Jackson intended to hire Steve Kerr, who has coached his team to back to back finals. He won one Championship in that time. The Warriors organization allows him to have the FREEDOM that Phil Jackson won’t give to Jeff Hornacek. Making sense yet?
How to win with the triangle offense? I know how. Have a team built like the Warriors, with the same shooting acumen, or someone who’s Michael or Kobe, and then you’ll be on your way. Carmelo is not one of those players. So why not give this team the freedom to truly grow into what they will be, organically, as opposed to forcing them to play a certain style and then diss them cause they can’t? Even Kobe hijacked the triangle to carry the team to bigger heights.
Did we forget that Carmelo carried the Denver Nuggets from the lottery to being a staple in the playoffs? Including in his rookie year, in a rough Western Conference. He didn’t come out as the Rookie of the Year cause they said he gave up on his team when they complained about him one day. You can’t limit greatness, right? He was a bully with moves all over the floor. He nearly came into the league complete, offensively. I think the league is plagued by what I’d like to call, “The LeBron Standard”. It’s about to change over to the likes of Steph Curry, Russell Westbrook, and Giannis Antetokounmpo. Their unique talents and output is only a product of themselves, like LeBron’s is. Carmelo never truly made his own niche. People remember him for dominating the post but he’s been more relegated to shooting jumpers lately.
I still see 2-3 strong years in him. I think he’s holding back. We may be close to seeing how true that statement really is. I predict a trade coming soon amidst all the reports. Hopefully it’s to the Boston Celtics or the Los Angeles Clippers. As much as I want him to win, it wouldn’t be great with him riding LeBron’s coattails to a championship. It’ll destroy his legacy.
By: Opinionated MJ
I have one question… Who’s stopping the Cleveland Cavaliers? I mean honestly? Who in the Eastern Conference can actually contend for a championship? The team that gave them their toughest on-court opposition isn’t in the picture. That would be my very own hometown Detroit Pistons. They’re still trying to match last year’s mentality. It’s getting late. The Chicago Bulls, the team that I considered one stretch four away from contention, isn’t in the picture. Dwayne Wade and LeBron still may NEVER meet in the playoffs in their ENTIRE career. Let that sink in… Carmelo Anthony isn’t doing enough with the New York Knicks to get them over the top and into playoff seeding. He’s only played LeBron one time as well.
At the top of the eastern mountains are the Cavs, Raptors, Celtics, and Hawks. I personally feel like you need a defensive big man to contend with any LeBron team. Dwight Howard is back out East and he has one big win against the old LeBron led Cavs from the past. He went to the big show that year as well. If any team has a chance, it’s Atlanta… But wait… They gave away Kyle Korver. Someone who actually helps the Hawks create space for Dwight to operate. Oh well.
There’s also the Celtics and Raptors. I’ll bundle them up together cause they’ve done the same thing the last 2 years: crumble when LeBron takes the floor against them. I’ve seen LeBron come in and literally CRUISE through those series without having to break a sweat. The Celtics seem to sadly, fold. The Hawks seem to implode and forget their style of play and their routine. Its very frustrating to watch. It’s like there’s no competition out east. Well, it’s not.
I think there are a number of west teams that could at least give the Cavs a good 2-3 games in a playoff series. Of course the top 3 can. I also think the Grizzlies, Jazz, Rockets and Thunder would have a decent chance, better than any east team. The west has forever been a Fight Club fight on the way to the finals. Injuries and grind show in the Western Conference playoffs. Just ask the Clippers, Warriors, and Spurs.
I picked Cleveland as the favorites for this season anyway. Now they’ve added a top shooter with this lineup and still don’t even have JR Smith back yet. This will be the year Kyrie shows his self-worth that has been overlooked since LeBron decided to go back home.
The Warriors are good but very vulnerable. They have patented their routine and they don’t know who’s going to shoot the last shot. I say Steph Curry every time.
Cavs vs Anybody in the finals. 4-1. LeBron coasts, Kyrie wins finals MVP finally, another ring for “The Land”. Comparison to Jordan ensues. Blasphemous commentary on this subject continues as LeBron gets closer to 6. He’s great, maybe he’ll wind up being second best. Maybe he’ll wind up winning the next 5 thanks to this garbage Eastern Conference. Man up Eastern Conference! Continue to slaughter them, Bron.
By: Opinionated MJ
Congratulations to LeBron and the Cavaliers! Cleveland, embrace this moment! You’ve been waiting for this. To finally see one of the best players ever, fulfill his promise to bring Cleveland a ring has got to be a breath of fresh air. I remember the feeling of living through a championship with my Pistons in 2004. The Red Wings were also prosperous. The Tigers were doing well as well if I’m not mistaken, I think we may have made the World Series that year. We had the Super Bowl here as well and I think a WrestleMania or something like that. Final Four NCAA basketball around this time as well. Great Year! Enjoy it!
LeBron has been preparing for season’s opening since Kevin Durant decided to become a part of the Golden State Warriors. They seem to be the only team that stands in the way of a repeat for the Cleveland Cavaliers. I’d like to add that, if I were Carmelo Anthony seeing this ring ceremony tonight, I’d probably cringe and play with nothing but anger and hunger in my heart. Knowing I had the chance to be a part of the Miami team that won a ring and to be able to finally experience that level of success. It must be fulfilling for LeBron for sure. He has one ring by himself now as well. Kyrie pitched in BIG! I even thought Kyrie would win finals MVP after closing out Steph Curry and the Warriors in crunch time of those last few games.
I’m not big on picking another team except the current reigning Champions as the favorites to win it all. I’m going with the Cavs but I will admit I want my Pistons to win and if they can’t then I would love to see the Warriors win one for KD while he’s on a LeBron-esque mission to obtain a ring and put that on his resume. That would solidify him with other future Hall of Famers. I’d also like to see if they Bulls could somehow someway pull a rabbit out of a hat. Although, I think Chris Bosh is the only way they could achieve such success. I would also like to see the Spurs acquire DeMarcus Cousins for LaMarcus Aldridge. You heard it first. Chris Bosh to the Bulls, Cousins to the Spurs.
LeBron wants to win the MVP this year and that is making waves throughout the league. I think Paul George may have mentioned MVP first but he’s driven to do so as well, Damian Lillard wants to, and I’m very certain that Russell Westbrook wants to as well without saying it. Westbrook was chasing Magic Johnson’s triple-double record last year and didn’t admit it until someone asked him. I think LeBron should relax and let Kyrie and Kevin prove themselves and let them man the battleship until it absolutely requires LeBron to come in and take over. I know things used to fall apart fast when he exited the game last season and they would struggle to extend their lead over other teams at times. Let’s not forget their struggles en route to their triumph. Up and down season with LeBron thinking of his Banana Boat squad being teammates one day, social media jabs at some of his teammates, and a few other things. Maybe he also took a few pointers from Kobe about challenging your teammates. You do have to PUSH others to get something done more times than not. He successfully pulled that off and led his team to a Championship after being down 3-1. Congrats again to the Cavaliers! Good luck to the Cleveland Indians!
By: Opinionated MJ
Welcome to another installment of the “NBA Landscape” series. Let’s jump right in to a few intriguing teams going into the 2016-17 NBA Season. Representing the Eastern Conference, yes, the conference I think possibly has NO chance to stop Cleveland regardless of how interesting they may get. I Like these teams but I believe they’re still one major piece short. That piece could be the growth of a player already existing on their roster.
The Pacers have found themselves loaded with talent in their starting lineup now and actually look very scary with Paul George another year removed from injury and with an entire season of health under his belt. No Danny Granger curse here. The Pacers now consist of Paul George, Monta Ellis, Al Jefferson, Jeff Teague, Myles Turner, and Thaddeus Young just to name a few. They now have the depth that it takes to make a deep run in the NBA Playoffs. The only question is, will their new coach Nate McMillan be able to translate his defensive prowess into these players and onto the court while also finding an offensive system to get this collection of players to coexist in. I guess people will be saying Teague is declining because he won’t be finishing as much as he did in Atlanta, he won’t have to. Their X-factor that can bring them success is Myles Turner. He needs to grow and continue to expand his game. If he can successfully fit in around a bunch of ball dominant guards, this team can potentially contend against a LeBron James Cavaliers team. If not, they’re doomed to be defeated by King James as easy as Toronto and Atlanta have been in the past.
Very intriguing as well but they’ve also landed an ex-Hawk in Al Horford. I’m not too fond of that 60 win Hawks teams from 2 seasons ago because they still folded against LeBron when it mattered just as they did during the playoffs this past year. They still have Isaiah Thomas, Al Horford, Jae Crowder, Kelly Olynyk, Gerald Green, Avery Bradley, and the rookie Jaylen Brown. This team just keeps expanding their depth every year. I really think they just need to either find the formula the 2004 Detroit Pistons found by having depth and defense with sparky offense, or they need to try to find a way to land a superstar by DOING WHATEVER IT TAKES! Allegedly they could’ve landed Jimmy Butler, should’ve pushed for DeMarcus Cousins, and were in the running for Kevin Durant. A lot of people thought they would land Russell Westbrook but he decided to stay in OKC. I see Boston being more of the same since Al Horford doesn’t really want to play with his back to the basket. He’ll provide relief for Thomas. The Celtics need more perimeter defenders in case they fall to the injury bug again when it matters most. If you lose Bradley, Crowder, and even Thomas’ scoring when it matters most, you’re doomed. More depth may be the key. Maybe if Jaylen Brown can make an instant impact then they’ll be better than expected. He is their X-factor.
My lovely DETROITTTTTTTTTT BASSSSSSKETTTTTBALLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!!!! I expect big things from this Pistons team coming into the 16-17 season. First things first, young Drummond. You must improve your free throws! This team is doomed unless… Stanley Johnson begins to find his inner Kawhi Leonard. I expect big things from him to go along with his attitude that he stands down to no man. I actually appreciate him for that reason. A lot of Cavs fans and NBA fans around the globe were saying that he should’ve kept his mouth shut. I beg to differ. What better to do being a #8 seed, underdog, gritty, new, young Pistons team making the playoffs for the first time in years and you get to see LEBRON JAMES as your opposition. It’s already win or go home. Sense of urgency from round 1! What better way to improve than to play against the absolute best team in the Eastern Conference and arguably the best player on the planet? Who better to talk smack to so you can be forced to elevate your game or be embarrassed. No matter the result, you win, due to the stage that this team is in. You automatically improve. He’s 19 (probably 20 now). He’s a kid! Already has the mindset of a man ready to put in the work to reach the goals and expectations set by his peers, the fans, and most importantly, his coach. Stan Van Gundy has a real diamond in the rough with Stanley Johnson. He IS the X-factor for the Detroit Pistons. I expect them to be top 4 in the East and as good as top 3. We stole Tobias Harris midseason, we’ve allowed Jackson a year to be the man running the show, we have Drummond who is capable of 20 & 20 on any night, and we also have Morris and KCP who can drop 20 without you expecting it at all. We have a well-rounded team. We just need Drummond to have a season where he plays better defense and can convert on 60-70% of his free throws. We were the BEST COMPETITION IN THE EASTERN CONFERENCE PLAYOFFS against the Cavs. Everybody else tucked their tail in and cowered in fear. I say that with absolute confidence because it is true. LeBron hasn’t had any competition in the east but 1 team every year. The Heat were expected to be the competition but fell to the injury bug, piece by piece.
I’ll stop it at the Pistons. I’ll also get into the Knicks, Bulls, and express what I expect from teams like the Wolves, 76ers, Lakers, and more in upcoming articles. The Knicks are surrounded in mystique at this point. I also wouldn’t sleep on the Bulls. The defense I expect from them would resemble something like that of the Wade, Bron, Bosh Miami Heat. Durant, OKC, Pelicans, Jazz, Suns!! Can’t wait for this season!
Until next article!
By: Opinionated MJ
Let’s start first by stating the obvious, Russell Westbrook has gone back to the Thunder. It will be OKC for at least 3 more years. I anticipate we’ll see an 2006 Kobe playing. Can’t wait for that. He’s got an opportunity to prove that he can do this all by himself without another star and with good role players. I was saying all last season amongst friends that the team felt like Russell’s anyway. He had that time without Kevin Durant when Durant was injured. That’s when it became his team. Durant didn’t naturally fit in when he came back. He’d get the ball and Iso most of the time. It’s Durant though, he provided another punch scoring wise and provided help for other teammates to have looks. I anticipate the NBA makes this an opening night game. Warriors-Thunder.
I want to talk about this New York team. Are we sleeping on Derrick Rose? Did we not pay attention to his efficiency during the second half of the season? I honestly think Jimmy Butler bricking shots put them out of the playoffs. Enter Carmelo Anthony, scorer. The Knicks have basically created what the Bulls could’ve had if Melo had signed with them minus Butler’s defense. In theory, Porzingis is a young Gasol, they have Noah, Melo, Courtney Lee is playing Butler’s spot, and they have Derrick Rose. Why aren’t we excited about this? Was it Jalen Rose that says we should call them the “Ice Bath Boys”? Lol! Maybe that’s why. I won’t sleep. They’re all hungry.
Let’s switch over to Chicago now since we’re talking about Butler. He now has Wade and Rondo! Crazy! They could resemble a perimeter defense like one employed by the Bron-Wade Miami Heat. Say I’m reaching. I’ll say do your research. All they need is shooters and serviceable backup role players. Maybe some insurance on Wade although I expect the same health from him that he endured this year. Pretty good stretch. Father Prime indeed. Question is, if Rondo dominated the ball, what kind of offense could they run? Top 6 team in the east, top 4 at best.
Next, I’ll talk about the Celtics, Pacers, Pistons and more.
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