Joakim Noah shouldn't have to worry about trying to find something to do next time he's in Cleveland, because I don't expect him to be back for a while. While I did think the Cavaliers would sweep these Bulls prior to the series tipping off, I would have certainly heard the argument that they could stretch this thing out into a 5th and final game. However, I don't think there's a chance for that anymore. Like it was when you brought your A-game to the driveway in junior high against your older - JV squad playing - brother, the Bulls just couldn't find a way to outlast these Cavaliers after playing it to a draw (77-77) through three. And as deflating as it was to consistently get bullied and beat by that bigger brother, it had to be equally deflating for these Bulls tonight. They gave the Cavaliers their best shot at it, and still lost by ten (112-102)...thanks for coming out fellas.And thanks for finding it necessary to decide to get into an on-court verbal sparring match with LeBron too. If you read somewhere that trash-talking always rattles James, and will certainly throw him off his game, you might need to give that Phonics book another look. He feeds of that stuff, and turns it into not only moments in time that will be forever immortalized on the walls of 13-year old kids everywhere (featuring James Johnson), but also long range in your face bombs launched to humiliate the guy that's guarding him. He served up both tonight, and finished with a line that read 40-8-8...and a message sent that said simply: it's over.
The "Wine & Gold Show" returns tonight! We have taken a few months off to gear up for the playoffs and we return just in time for Game 2 of the Cleveland Cavaliers/Chicago Bulls 1st Round Series.
We start at 7pm ET and will go until tipoff. You can jump in the live chat or call us with your questions! We also accept Skype calls as well. And remember, we will be broadcasting one hour before EVERY Cavs playoff game! Giving you audio from both teams, stats, keys to the game and of course, our predictions.
CALL IN LINE: 216-759-9011 - CHAT ROOM BELOW - SKYPE: glenns.mooreNext Show: Thursday night 1 hour before Game 3 tips off... no comments
He bullied Joakim Noah for the 35 minutes the frizzy-haired ex-Gator played Saturday night. He totally outclassed Noah in every aspect of the game. He played better man-to-man defense, got involved in the team offense more than Noah, and when it came to the paint it was a non-runner. Whether it be spinning off Noah’s right forearm for a vintage Shaq move or swiping the ball from Noah on a drive (which cannoned off Noah for a Cavs ball) he looked like a man on fire. Or better yet, a Diesel Truck with no brakes. When Brad Miller played him, same result. Spinning off the Bulls back up big with ease and aplomb in the paint while showing his soft touch. It was vintage Shaq. Shaq who hasn’t played since Feb. 25. Shaq who wasn’t supposed to be able to do those things in the paint anymore. 12, 5, 4, 3. That will do nicely for me Mr. O’Neal, thank you very much.
The following is a list of our playoff roster and their career playoff games, playoff appearances and the furthest they have reached in the playoffs coming into this year: no comments
Editors note: Before there was the type of energy and excitement that's scheduled to consume Cleveland starting this weekend, this Cavaliers team provided a different type of entertainment. Offered below is a brief look back at those times...the Stepien Years.
Everyone who doesn’t sleep under the West I-90 bridge knows the Cavs are running full blast toward an NBA crown in these ‘09-‘10 playoffs set to tip-off on Saturday at three. The crowds are huge, the Q is hopping and the downtown is so very thankful for LeBron - and Shaq (esp. the restaurants and pizza joints).
But there was a time - ironically - when the Cavs were actually more entertaining than they are today. This boy remembers the Ted Stepien days of lore - or at least most of them.
Ok, ok. So I tried to go Nostradamus on StepienRules with my Ten and Counting post a few weeks back, and while I was close (yeah, as close as American Pie 12 was to getting nominated) I was still somewhat off in my predictions. But come on, I fully didn’t expect Coach Brown to rest Bron for all those games, I thought he’d at least get a half here or there. But I hold no grudges towards you Mikey B for making me look silly, I’m about to redeem myself. The redemption of all redemptions is ahead for all my loyal fans out there (basically it’s just Brendan, he puts up my stuff on the site through either sympathy or just to avoid an abusive email from a disgruntled Irishman, I’m not sure which one yet) as I’m about to give a rundown of the Eastern Conference First Round matchups with the knowledge of me being 100% right in everything I say. (Editor’s note – could you imagine if I was being serious??). So without further ado, the Eastern Conference First Round Matchups should go something like this…
Cavs (1) v Bulls (8). The Bulls slipped us twice this year, by a combined total of two points. One of those games came without LeBron; the other was when our record was 3-3 after tying the total number of home losses for the season previous in our first two of this season. So to say the Bulls caught us on off days may be understating it. This time around (like the two victories we scored over them in the regular season) we’ll be ready and at full strength. Shaq looks as great as a guy weighing 300 plus pounds can so I’ve no worries regarding him and his future man handling of that frizzy-haired-antagonising-mind-melting-dance-hating-cry-baby Joakim Noah. I just broke the world record for “Longest Joakim Noah Nickname” by the way. I’m going to take the Cavs in five here. I think the Bulls just might sneak one at home, they do have the pieces to give us a game, but not a series. Just do me one favor, Google the Celtics-Bulls series in ’08…Surely not again? no comments
Editor's note: On Thursday most of the Cavaliers , including Maurice Williams, rested in an attempt to avoid injury during a meaningless walk -thru with the Atlanta Hawks to close out the regular season. This Saturday though, at 3pm against the Bulls right here in Cleveland, the postseason finally tips-off. And while it is an opportunity for Cleveland to win its first title since 1964, it's also a chance for Williams - according to Kyle - to do something else...win his nickname back.
In a previous stats of the week post penned by Dave Wooley here at StepienRules, he made note of the struggles that have plagued the artist formerly known as “Mo”, Maurice Williams, in the 2009-2010 season. Maurice has struggled with injuries, new pieces in the offensive puzzle, and trying to facilitate rather than fill it up. Couple this with a bad aftertaste from last season’s playoffs, and yours truly decided that action needed to be taken.
Retracting the nickname “Mo” and replacing it with his given name Maurice until he plays like the “Mo” that had such a great regular season last year.
I’ve decided to do this on a letter per game basis based on Maurice’s play in the playoffs. Each performance deemed “Mo” worthy will have a letter taken away from M-A-U-R-I-C-E until we end up with M-O. And I did win back-to-back district spelling bee championships in grade school, smart guy, so I know there isn’t an O in there. If Maurice plays well enough to get it down to M-A, we’ll make a deal.
Check back right here during the playoffs for updates...
What you didn't know? Its April 14th and all that means is Unsung Player Day's back again. Launched and efforted by our good friend Don over at With Malice, today's that day on your blogging calendar designed to show love to less hyped, and oft forgotten members of your local squad.
A technical description is as follows:
"April 14th: ‘Unsung Player Day'... we should recognize the guys who toil and work hard every day, for no recognition. Well, today's your day. In reality, these guys are just as responsible for making the NBA what it is today - every team needs role-players, guys to come on and give that valuable 2-5 minutes. Without them, there is no NBA. I would encourage NBA bloggers to put up an ‘unsung player' on their blog on April 14th. What's an 'Unsung Player'? A role player who gives his all in the 2-5 minutes he gets per game (try to be definitely under 10 minutes). Someone who doesn't get a lot of recognition..."
So to be clear, I do understand the requirements of which I am not technically following in my naming of Jawad Williams as the Cavaliers Unsung Player of the Year. Fact is, he averages 13.4 minutes per game in 53 appearances. On the Cavaliers roster, however, the only players listed as averaging less than 10 minutes per are Danny Green and Darnell Jackson. I can't give it to either of those guys, but besides that, I think Williams has earned some end of the season dap.
Jawad Williams:What Williams has done this season is played himself into being a legitimate weapon off the bench that the Cavaliers did not expect to have on the roster this season...
When we wake up on Thursday morning - following the regular season finale on Wednesday against the Hawks - we'll find ourselves in the same place we were this time last season: the Cavs will have the best record in the NBA, they'll have home-court advantage throughout the playoffs, and the MVP of the league will be playing once again for the good guys. And if you're anything like me, you'll have no idea what to think about all that.
I thought I knew how to approach all this last post-season, just like I thought I knew how to attack Bald Bull the first time I went against him in Mike Tyson's Punchout. But when the Magic started spinning their fists to open the ECF, I didn't know how to get out of the way, and I never saw those hay-makers coming until it was too late. And by too late, I mean it wasn't supposed to end like that...I had already scheduled time off for the parade. But I think a lot of the sports fan pain we went through last post-season was self-inflicted. At least in my case it was. I had never been more convinced about anything in my life as I was last April that the Cavaliers would win the NBA championship. LeBron's just too good I said...he can't be beat. Turns out even he needed some help.Which brings me back to my approach this season...
Just checked my email, and look what I found...the latest banger from the best Cavaliers rap group in the game...See you in Tha Finals!
To the tune of Cleveland's own...Bone Thugs N Harmony: