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Upcoming UAAP/NCAA Stars Will Play in Jr. NBA Alumni All-Star Game at Jr. NBA National Training Camp

MANILA – If you want to see the blue chip rookies who will play for UAAP and NCAA teams in the coming collegiate basketball season, watch the Jr. NBA All-Stars Alumni game on April 27, 2013 at the SM Mall of Asia Music Hall at 12 noon.

24 Jr. NBA alumni from Batch 2009 to Batch 2013 will compete in a Red vs. White basketball game that will be coached by NBA talents Gordon Hayward of the Utah Jazz and WNBA Llegend Tina Thompson. Called Team Gordon and Team Tina, the two teams will reprise last year’s very successful and crowd-pleasing alumni game between Team Muggsy and Team Jolas. Last year’s teams were coached by then visiting NBA Legend Muggsy Bogues and Jr. NBA Philippines Coach Jojo Lastimosa of Alaska.

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Recapping The Playoffs (April 21)

After a stirring set of Game 1s that saw five upsets, it was time to see how the home teams would respond.  The first team up was the LA Clippers.  After Blake Griffin played only 19 minutes in the opener due to foul trouble, how would he respond?  In addition, the Oklahoma City Thunder laid out a thrashing on the Memphis Grizzlies in their Game 1.  Would Memphis be able to respond to the Thunder's firepower?

 98  138

Series Tied 1-1

Blake Griffin: 35 points, 6 rebounds, 2 steals

What a difference staying on the floor makes.  No longer marred by foul trouble, Blake Griffin put forth a dominant effort against the undermanned Warriors frontline.  He shot 13-17 from the floor and the team was  +22 with him on the court.  Oh, and, he didn't commit a single foul.  DeAndre Jordan helped out and nearly had a triple double with 11 points and 9 rebounds while adding 5 blocks.  No one but Steph Curry really got going for the Warriors as he finished with 24 points and 8 assists.  The series will now shift to Oakland for two games before heading back to Staples Center for Game 5.

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Mike Woodson Out, Steve Kerr In?

One of the most high-profile jobs in basketball is now vacant.  

It was announced today that the New York Knicks have fired head coach Mike Woodson and his entire coaching staff.  This comes after a season of turmoil that saw the Knicks finish with a 37-45 record and did not qualify for the NBA Playoffs for the first time in four years.

This was a huge drop off from last season where New York finished 2nd in the Eastern Conference with a 54-28 record.

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Not a Walk(er) in the Park

What a game from the Nets/Raptors and Wizards/Bulls series as both teams were wire to wire until the end. Meanwhile, the Hawks got a dose of their own medicine as they were routed by the Pacers while being outscored 31-13 in the third quarter. The team that will control the third quarter will win this series, bank on it.

For tomorrow's games, I noticed that the Heat/Bobcats series and the Spurs/Mavericks series will be played on the same dates. If in case both series go down 0-2 in favor of the bigger seed coming into Saturday, we might have a hard time in selecting a player with the likes of Dirk, Monta, Millsap, Teague or even Conley, Gasol and Randolph. On saturday, the Pacers/Hawks and Thunder/Grizzlies will both play their game 4's with the fact that someone will go up 2-1. A dilemma that we might face here is that if both Dallas and Charlotte go down 0-2 while Memphis and Atlanta trails 1-2, we might have to scramble and select the "best" option available. I would like to trim down my choices before that happens.

For my April 23 pick, I am going with: 

 

KEMBA WALKER

 

Why Walker?

- With news that Al Jefferson might not play in Game 2, Kemba Walker gets a huge boost as he will be the focal point of the offense against the Heat. With added interest that Mario Chalmers is questionable for Game 2, Walker's efforts will be more focused in scoring and scoring at all. If indeed Chalmers misses Game 2, look for Toney Douglas and Norris Cole to rotate in defending Walker, with Douglas being tasked to do more defensively.  His road stats doesn't scream confidence with Walker averaging better numbers at home (19 points, 4 rebounds, 7 assists) than on the road (16 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists) but again, if Jefferson misses Game 2 (and I doubt that will happen), look for Kemba to dominate the touches offensively while Gerald Henderson plays aggressive and have a scorer's mentality. 

Picking a Rocket is also a good idea but I'll wait for Game 3 before selecting a player in that series. Hoping for a loss for both Charlotte and Dallas. If you are leaning on picking a Mav, I would go with Dirk Nowitzki as he tends to have big bounce-back games in his career. According to Tim McMahon, Dirk averages 27 points after scoring sub-15 the first time around. By the way, if you are still holding on Al Jeff, this is the perfect time to select him. We don't really know if his injury is really that serious but I know the Bobcats are holding out information to gain upper hand come tip off. I repeat, DO NOT EXPECT AL JEFFERSON TO MISS GAME 2. 

 

With their Game 1 victory, Miami extended its dominance against Charlotte by winning 17 straight times since LeBron joined Miami. Can Charlotte turn back the tide and stop the streak? Will Al Jefferson and Mario Chalmers play? The game will be shown on local TV, and I will surely watch this game.

Latest Podcast Episode

  • Episode 56: It's Playoff Time

    On this episode, guest host Vico Sotto joins Isaiah as the NBA Playoffs begin. They discuss which Western Conference matchup has the most potential for an upset, and whether Miami or Indiana has the easier road to their almost inevitable Eastern Conference Final matchup. Also, they give their thoughts if the current Playoffs format is flawed and how it can possibly be fixed.

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