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Ten Things About the NBA: Hawks Shakeup, Oubre and More

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Phil has ten things from this past week that he thinks you will enjoy.....actually he KNOWS you will enjoy!

NBA: Playoffs-Atlanta Hawks at Washington Wizards Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Little Big Man Getting it Done

Boston Celtics PG Isaiah Thomas has had a rough playoff season; just prior to Game 1 of the First Round he lost his sister in a tragic car accident. In Game 1 against the Washington Wizards he lost a tooth and ensured that was all that was lost as he wound up scoring 33 points to lead the Celtics.

In Game 2 he didn’t seem to lose anything and made sure Head Coach Brad Stevens looked good by scoring 53 points in an overtime victory.

It seems that Thomas has had some help from an unlikely source; former Los Angeles Lakers great Kobe Bryant has been in his ear and the results speak for themselves.

http://www.espn.com/video/clip?id=19308058

I know we aren’t big fans of the Celtics in these parts but this is one of those times you just have to shake off the WELL DESERVED Celtics hatred and give this young man some props.

The Clippers Deserve to Win?

At least that’s what Los Angeles Clippers President and Head Coach Doc Rivers believes when asked about the future of the Clippers. Blake Griffin, J.J. Redick and Chris Paul are all set to become Free Agents and defensive stopper Luc Mbah a Moute has an option to either return or test the Free Agent waters.

Rivers also claims the "Big Three" (including DeAndre Jordan) have built some sort of legacy but for the life of me I can’t figure out just what type of legacy those three have built that would make Paul and Griffin return.

For all the hoopla surrounding the big three the Clippers have never reached the Western Conference Finals during their version of the "big three" era.

To be fair they have had some unfortunate and untimely injuries during crucial times during both the regular and post season so maybe I should cut them a little bit of slack.

Comparing LeBron James to Michael Jordan?

LeBron James is now just 210 points shy of being the All-Time leading scorer in the post season. More than likely he will pass Michael Jordan sometime during the 2017 playoffs.

Kudos to James because 5777 post season points is a helluva lot of points and 300 playoff triples is no small feat either.

Now the obligatory "Is LeBron James better than Michael Jordan" argument will be fought all across the interwebs.

It’s difficult for me to try and compare what Michael Jordan was able to do with the Bulls with what LeBron James has done with the Cavs then Heat then back to the Cavs.

Both are/were great players in their own right and for me I have had the privilege of watching both of them play their entire careers. It has been a real treat watching both of them dominate the NBA during their respective careers.

Ever wonder who between the two had more 35 point games during their playoff careers?

James is fifth in NBA History with 137 playoff wins. Jordan has 119 playoff victories.

Michael dominated the NBA Finals and took home the Championship six times out of six whereas LeBron hasn’t been as fortunate with his 3-4 NBA Finals record.

In my world of tennis the Greatest is the one with the most success in the Major Finals. Nobody there gives two hoots about the runner-up.

I’m still riding with Jordan being greater than LeBron.

Kawhi Leonard is Really Really Good

Kawhi Leonard is slowly and quietly becoming the best player in the NBA. Take a look at what he is doing in this season’s playoff run and the company he is keeping.

What Is Going On With the Atlanta Hawks?

Your guess is as good as mine. Really I don’t. I have no idea what the heck is happening with the Hawks Front Office other than the fact Owner Tony Ressler is the one calling the shots.

Wednesday Hawks Twitter exploded with the news GM Wes Wilcox was sent packing; moments later the Hawks said they were evaluating how the basketball operations works best.

Wes Wilcox is no longer the GM but he has another job in the Hawks Front Office.

Huh??

I have an idea on how the basketball operations works best; fire whoever decided to bring Dwight Howard to the Atlanta Hawks. That was not a good basketball decision. That decision looks more and more like a desire to sell season tickets. That’s where you start.

Mike Budenholzer is no longer President of Basketball Operations.

Huh???

Mike Budenholzer was made President of Basketball Operations back in 2015. As President Budenholzer has faced far more scrutiny than as the Head Coach so from that standpoint it seems to make sense. Allegedly he would still have some input on player personnel which is just a kind way of saying his job is to coach whoever the Front Office gives him.

It’s interesting that all this has taken place after the Tony Ressler interview with the ACJ.

This can’t be good at all.

Is It Too Early To Talk About This Summer?

Hell no it isn’t. I was reading the other day about what the Chicago Bulls might wind up doing this summer. Apparently Rajon Rondo went from the DNP recycle bin to being welcomed back; troublemaker Dwyane Wade is probably going to opt out of his contract and the Bulls aren’t quite sure yet what to do about Jimmy Butler.

I don’t think losing Wade is going to bother the Bulls Front Office. He didn’t help them all that much and he sure wasn’t all that and a bag of chips during the playoffs so it would be easy to let him go.

Butler could be worth a gold mine on Draft Night. That Brooklyn pick is going to be a huge boon for someone and with this being such a point guard heavy draft the Bulls could decide to send Butler packing, have Rondo tutor the young fella they draft and build the team around him.

Boston gets a three who can score and play defense. He’ll fit right in with the rest of that bunch of whiners over there in Boston and they will get the "superstar" their fan base thought they found when they signed Al Horford.

Chicago Bulls boss John Paxson claims they are not looking to trade Butler but he’s signed through 2020 and the contract is extremely cap friendly and I wouldn’t be surprised if Butler gets dealt sooner rather than later.

Shaqtin’ A Fool

Episode 25 is hilarious and highlights two of my least favorite players in the NBA. You have to see it and tell me who you think my two least favorite players are in the comments section.

Tony Parker

Man was this ugly.

The way Parker just dropped and remained down wasn’t encouraging for the San Antonio Spurs or their fan base. Season ending surgery isn’t much fun.

Folks act as if losing Parker is the end for the Spurs this season but that is only because they don’t pay attention to the games. If they did they would know that Parker has struggled mightily this season and it was until recently that he started flashing signs of the old Parker.

Patty Mills is more than an adequate replacement and Dejounte Murray might wind up starting as Coach Popovich doesn’t like to mess up the chemistry of his starting and second units.

The Spurs will be fine and will end up sending the Rockets on an earlier than some expected vacation.

Best wishes on a speedy recovery Mr. Parker.

DeMar DeRozan Lays an Egg

Toronto Raptors SG DeMar DeRozan is having a tough time during the Raptors playoff series with Cleveland. His 12 points per game so far this series is well below his 27.5 points per game regular season average. DeRozan has laid up some playoff stinkers in his career but his five point output was the worst of his career.

Kelly Oubre Goes Nuts

You remember Kelly Oubre? He was a former Atlanta Hawks draft pick. He’s also the one who Dwight Howard gave an open dunk to in the playoffs. In case you missed that dunk refer back to the reason Shaquille O’Neill roasted Howard on Shaqtin’ a Fool.

I always wondered why Howard would do such a thing. I thought it was because he is an empty headed mental midget has ZERO basketball IQ and doesn’t really care all that much about anything other than whining and pouting when he doesn’t get his way.

After watching the Washington Wizards Boston Celtics game last night I might have to admit that I was wrong about Howard. He may be all the things and more than I just described but maybe he was afraid that Oubre might snap on him the way he did after Celtics big man Kelly Olynyk set a playoff type screen on the young fella.

See ya next week!!