Tag Archive | "NBA"

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Wizards top Spurs in 3OT to advance to Summer League semifinals

Posted on 20 July 2014 by WNST Staff

Game Recap: Wizards 95, Spurs 94 (3OT)

It took triple-overtime for the Washington Wizards to defeat the San Antonio Spurs 95-94 in the final quarterfinal game of the Samsung NBA Summer League 2014. The Wizards (5-0) will take on the Sacramento Kings (4-1) on Sunday in the semi-finals. The Spurs went 4-2 in the summer desert classic.

With 36 seconds left in the game Vander Blue hit a three-point jump shot to tie the game at 81, neither team would score in the final seconds forcing overtime to decide the game. Austin Daye connected on a pair of free throws with 4.8 seconds left in overtime to tie the game at 84. Glen Rice Jr. hit a three at the buzzer to force triple overtime.

Rice scored a game high 36 points and pulled down a team high 11 rebounds for the Wizards while Otto Porter scored 27. Austin Daye scored a team high 27 points for the Spurs while Bryce Cotton added 16.

In the opening quarter of play the Spurs earned a one-point lead, 21-20, after trailing by as many as five early in the quarter. Daye and Green powered the Spurs offense with six points apiece while Porter led the Wizards with eight.

The Spurs blew the game wide open when they went on a 20-1 run and led by as many as 17 in the second quarter. The Wizards answered with a 9-2 run to end the quarter, San Antonio took a 49-39 lead at the half. Daye continued to lead the Spurs offense with eight points in the quarter while Kyle Anderson added five. Daniel Theis tallied six for the Wizards.

Washington answered back in the third with a 17-2 run of their own in the period and finished up 63-61. Rice scored 12 points for the Wizards while Porter added five. Deshaun Thomas and Cotton each scored four for the Spurs.

The two teams traded baskets in the fourth quarter, neither team leading by more than four points. The quarter featured seven lead changes and was tied up twice. Rice led the Wizards with seven points while Blue added seven for the Spurs.

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Grunfeld Building a Contender with Stellar Off-Season

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Grunfeld Building a Contender with Stellar Off-Season

Posted on 18 July 2014 by Nick Dorsey


The Washington Wizards 2013-14 season was among the most successful the franchise has had in quite sometime. There is a lot of momentum from last season to build off of and general manager Ernie Grunfeld had a task ahead of him going into the off-season. Continuity was the main goal and for the most part they succeeded.

Priority number one for the organization was bringing back center Marcin Gortat. Washington acquired the Polish center from the Phoenix Suns in a trade last off-season and a first round pick was part of the price. Gortat had one of the best years of his career averaging 13 points, nearly 10 rebounds and had 37 double-doubles.

Gortat was a big difference maker for the Wizards last year and they could not afford for him to walk. He helped elevate the franchise to a playoff contender and giving up a first rounder for Gortat made him nonexpendable. The front office took care of priority number one by signing the Polish center to a five year $60 million deal.

The second priority for Grunfeld was bringing back starting small forward Trevor Ariza. The 10-year veteran had one of the better seasons in his career averaging 14 points and shooting 40% from the three-point line. Ariza also brought a great defensive presence and should have gotten recognized for his defensive skills on one of the All-NBA defensive teams.

Ariza wanted the big contract, as he was most likely entering his last big free agency period of his career. Wanting long-term financial security, this was his best time to get that.

Washington did not want to overspend for the services of Ariza, but they expressed interest in bringing him back. Unfortunately, they were unable to come to an agreement and Ariza chose to sign with the Houston Rockets for a four-year deal worth $32 million.

The loss of Ariza at first left a large hole for the former third overall selection Otto Porter to fill, but Grunfeld made a big move.
Former Brooklyn Net Paul Pierce signed on the dotted line and was officially a Washington Wizard. This move came as a bit of a surprise to many, but it is a move that had to happen. There are several different opinions about Pierce at this point in his career, but this was an outstanding addition to the roster.

Entering his 17th season, Pierce played a career low last year in terms of minutes per game. He might have some age to him, but Pierce brings qualities to this team they desperately need.

When Ariza left for Houston, a lot of experience within this team was lost. Trevor Ariza won a championship with the Lakers and brought that championship experience to a team that was so young and not full of playoff experience. The Wizards now get that back with Pierce, who has won a championship with Boston and was once awarded Finals MVP.

Washington was able to close games in their first round series against the Chicago Bulls, but found difficulty in closing out games against the Indiana Pacers. Bradley Beal was that guy first round, but Paul George made it tough for him second round to do so. Nobody else was able to step up in that role and Paul Pierce brings that ability with him.

The Truth is known as one of the more clutch players in the NBA and is one of the best closers. With the experience he brings to the lineup, no stage is too big for him and it will rub off on the rest of the squad.

Otto Porter is due to get an increased workload this year and right now the Pierce signing does not limit that. Pierce will be great for Porter from a mentor standpoint and he is not killing a severe amount of playing time for the second year player. With Pierce only getting about 28 minutes a game last season, Porter will still get plenty of minutes to gain experience.

This situation could get a little tricky over a month into the season once Martell Webster gets back onto the floor. For now, the signing of Pierce is a huge addition for the Wizards due to the experience he brings and the ability to close out in the big moments.

Washington has other needs to address this off-season such as providing better depth in the front-court and adding another guard to the mix. The Wizards made several trades in the past few days to add to the depth in the front-court.

Kris Humphries and DeJuan Blair were added to the roster through sign and trade deals. Humphries is a solid shooter from mid range much like Nene, except he is not as physical and defensively sound as Nene. Blair appears undersized at 6’7 for the low post, but he is a physical player able to rebound and score inside well.

With Drew Gooden set to return as well, the Wizards front court depth is much better heading into the season than they were last year. The roster is almost set nearing the 15-player maximum and Washington has flexibility with that last spot.

Ernie Grunfeld has done a tremendous job of building a contender in the Eastern conference. He has done a great job of setting up the team for success now, but also the future as well. Many of the new acquisitions have short-term deals with player options in the mix. These contracts give an opportunity for the front office to clear up a good amount of cap space.

This flexibility with the roster and the salary cap already is raising discussions on whether the Wizards are positioning themselves to make a run for Kevin Durant in 2016. With the LeBron returning home story just happening, eyes are already gazing upon Durant to potentially make a return home to DC.

Landing Durant is a possibility with an attractive roster to surround himself with and the cap room to get a big deal. It also bodes well for Washington when they chose to hire Durant’s former high school coach David Adkins. The pieces are falling into place for the potential signing, but that time is out on the horizon.

The Wizards took a big step as a franchise last season winning their first playoff series since 2005. With playoff experience gained and good pieces added to the roster, Grunfeld has the Wizards set to be a big-time contender in the Eastern Conference.

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Dorsey's Dugout - NBA Free Agency Frenzy

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Dorsey’s Dugout – NBA Free Agency Frenzy

Posted on 18 July 2014 by Nick Dorsey


LeBron James

In one of the better sports stories in years, LeBron James returned back to his hometown Cleveland Cavaliers where it all began. The King left Miami after four seasons, winning two out of four NBA Final appearances during that stretch.

The return of the King to Cleveland shocked many because there are still plenty of lingering images of destruction that come up when talking about James departure for Miami. Fans crying, burning jerseys and an owners hateful letter calling out the Akron native for his lack of loyalty. LeBron James made the best decision to go back to Cleveland for many reasons.

When the dominoes began to fall, the four-time MVP’s former team Miami looked to be dismantling with key pieces looking to move on elsewhere. With uncertainty of the quality of players that would surround him on the floor, James made the right move to leave.

Cleveland has some nice pieces on the roster as it stands, including NBA All Star MVP Kyrie Irving running the point. There are other players as well, but the future is uncertain for some of the other young Cavaliers.

There have been rumors swirling around that Cleveland might deal Dion Waiters, Andrew Wiggins and a first rounder to acquire Kevin Love from Minnesota. General manager of the Cavs, David Griffin, should make the trade for Love because it would make them a title favorite out of the Eastern Conference.

Trading a young player like Andrew Wiggins with the kind of potential he has seems like a bizarre idea, but it would be the better move for the Cavs. Wiggins is not a sure thing, but with acquiring Kevin Love you know your getting an All Star player. The former Bruin is a three-time All Star who has a great post presence with the ability to shoot from the outside as well.

As the roster currently stands, Cleveland has Wiggins playing the shooting guard position. The Jayhawk standout played the small forward position at KU and was not known as a great jump shooter. He better suits playing the three spot in the NBA, but on Cleveland that’s the spot that the King currently occupies.

If Griffin makes the trade for Kevin Love, the Cavs become the instant favorite to represent the East in the Finals. With a new big three that consists of Irving, Love and James they would be difficult to defeat in a seven game series. It is a win-win move for Griffin, especially since Love has expressed interest in signing a long-term deal in Cleveland.

Carmelo Anthony

The choices were narrowed down to either the Windy City or returning back to the Big Apple and Anthony chose to return back to the Knicks. Melo decided to sign the big deal and put his faith in Phil Jackson to build a winner in New York.

While Phil Jackson certainly knows what he is doing when it comes to winning in the NBA, Melo should have chose the Bulls as his next destination. Chicago is in a much better position to win now and is a better fit than the New York Knicks.

Chicago is a playoff team already without Anthony and his skills could have elevated the Bulls to another level in the East. The Bulls have a proven coach in Tom Thibodeau whereas the Knicks are going with Derek Fisher, who is about to coach his first team ever. Not only does Chicago have the better coach, they also have the better team by far.

The Bulls are a defensive powerhouse in the NBA and their most glaring need is a player that can close. That need was definitive in their first round exit against the Washington Wizards. Some of those games in that series were close down the stretch in the fourth quarter, but Chicago was unable to find a consistent scoring threat that could close out a game.

Adding Carmelo to the mix would fill their need of a closer and help bolster their lackluster offense. One of the criticisms of Anthony throughout his career is he is not a good defensive player. The Bulls already have great defense throughout the lineup so Anthony would not of been as much of a liability on the floor for the Bulls.

Carmelo put his trust in Phil Jackson to build a winner and maybe one day his faith will be rewarded. In the short term, Chicago would have been the better opportunity for Carmelo Anthony to win a ring.

Heat Rebuild

Once LeBron bolted for his hometown, it was almost certain that Chris Bosh would take the max deal he was offered from Houston. Instead of joining Howard and Harden, Bosh made a surprising decision to stay with the Miami Heat.

A franchise that seemed as if it was going to be completely dismantled, had hope restored once Bosh re-signed. Pat Riley has built contending teams several times in Miami before and did an excellent job once the King left. Retaining Bosh was huge for the Heat and they also managed to bring back Dwayne Wade.

Two pieces of the big three remain in Miami and although Wade is not at the level he once was, it’s a nice start to retooling. Danny Granger and Josh McRoberts were not sexy enough names to woo LeBron, but they do provide solid depth for the Heat.

Miami added Shabazz Napier through the draft and brought back point guard Mario Chalmers. The pieces were coming back together and Riley did the best he possibly could at filling the James void by signing Luol Deng.

The former Duke star has been a Bull for the majority of his career until last years short stint as a Cavalier. Deng is superb defensively, but injury is a concern with Deng. Since the start of the 2011 season, Deng has missed 54 games due to injury. If Deng can stay on the floor, the Heat will be contending for the Southeast division title.

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Wizards top Heat, advance to Summer League quarterfinals

Posted on 18 July 2014 by WNST Staff

Recap: Wizards 78, Heat 67

The Washington Wizards (4-0) remained unbeaten in Las Vegas at the Samsung NBA Summer League 2014 with a 78-67 triumph over the Miami Heat (2-3) Wednesday evening at UNLV’s Cox Pavilion. Washington, who led the entire first half, had to fend off a pesky Miami squad that owned a one-point lead — 68-67 — with as little as 2:17 remaining in regulation.

The Wizards, the fourth overall seed, advance to Saturday’s quarterfinals of the championship bracket and will face the #12 San Antonio Spurs (4-1) at 7:00 pm in the Thomas & Mack Center. The Heat, on the other hand, will square off against the Cleveland Cavaliers (3-1) in the consolation round Thursday at 7:00 pm in the Cox Pavilion.

Washington was able to open up the contest with a 10-point lead — 14-4 — through the initial 7:27 with help from Glen Rice Jr., who had seven of those points. Nine seconds later Miami’s Shabazz Napier nailed a 21-foot jumper to cut the deficit to eight. From that point forward the score remained in single digits until the Wizards got a pair of free throws from Daniel Theis to push the lead to 10 and 11 points in the affair’s final seconds.

The second half witnessed 14 lead changes and 10 tied scores with the largest lead being four points until Washington reeled off an 11-0 run to end the game in the final 1:31.

Rice Jr. and Theis racked up double-doubles in the game with the former using a combination of 22 points and 10 rebounds to the latter’s 10 and 11, respectively.

Otto Porter rounded out Washington’s trio of double-digit scorers with 14 points to go along with six boards.

Miami’s Justin Hamilton led the squad with 15 points and was one rebound shy of collecting his own double-double. James Nunnally and Napier contributed 14 points apiece.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 14 July 2014 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: WNBA: Washington Mystics @ Phoenix Mercury (Tuesday 10pm from Phoenix live on ESPN2), Washington Mystics @ Los Angeles Sparks (Thursday 10:30pm from Los Angeles live on WNBA Live Access); WNBA All-Star Game (Saturday 3:30pm from Phoenix live on ESPN); MLS: Chivas USA @ DC United (Sunday 8pm from RFK Stadium live on Comcast SportsNet/Univision); Mixed Martial Arts: UFC Fight Night-Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone vs. Jim Miller (Wednesday 9pm from Atlantic City live on Fox Sports 1), UFC Fight Night Conor McGregor vs. Diego Brandao (Saturday 3pm from Dublin live on UFC Fight Pass)

10. Artscape (Friday-Sunday Mount Royal); Flip Orley (Thursday-Sunday DC Improv); The Purge: Anarchy“, “Planes: Fire and Rescue” and “Sex Tape” out in theaters (Friday); Rio 2” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday)

Artscape is so much better when Robert McClintock is involved. For example,

I’ll bet “Sex Tape” is horrible, but it doesn’t change how much this appears to be a nice scene.

9. Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings/Kelly Bell Band (Friday 7:30pm Artscape), Ozomatli/Galactic (Saturday 5:30pm Artscape), Anthony Hamilton (Sunday 6:30pm Artscape); New Edition (Saturday 8pm Baltimore Arena Sunday 8pm Verizon Center); Queens of the Stone Age/St. Vincent (Thursday 5:30pm Merriweather Post Pavilion), Fall Out Boy/Paramore/New Politics (Friday 5:30pm Merriweather Post Pavilion), O.A.R./Phillip Phillips (Saturday 5pm Merriweather Post Pavilion), Queen + Adam Lambert (Sunday 6:30pm Merriweather Post Pavilion); Bad Company/Lynyrd Skynyrd (Saturday 7pm Jiffy Lube Live); The Fray (Wednesday 7pm Wolf Trap), Straight No Chaser (Thursday 8pm Wolf Trap), Huey Lewis & The News (Sunday 8pm Wolf Trap), Lionel Richie/CeeLo Green (Monday 8pm Wolf Trap); Better Than Ezra (Friday 8pm Power Plant Live); The Bacon Brothers (Friday & Saturday 6:30pm & 9:30pm Rams Head on Stage); Bret Michaels (Thursday 8pm Rams Head Center Stage), Dennis DeYoung (Sunday 8pm Rams Head Center Stage); Lyfe Jennings (Friday 8pm Howard Theatre), De La Soul (Saturday 8pm Howard Theatre); Puss N Boots (Thursday 7pm 9:30 Club); Edwin McCain (Friday 7:30pm Birchmere); B.B. King (Thursday 8pm Warner Theatre); Ben Folds (Thursday 7:30pm Meyerhoff Symphony Hall); Veruca Salt (Monday 8pm Black Cat); John Hiatt/Robert Cray Band (Sunday 8pm Strathmore); Rise Against “The Black Market”, Jason Mraz “Yes!”, Bleachers “Strange Desire” and “Weird Al” Yankovic “Mandatory Fun” available (Tuesday)

Sharon Jones is a DAMN fine Artscape headliner. Maybe the best since Robert Randolph.

Ozomatli is also quite good at the music stuff.

The guy with two hands up? He’ll be at O.A.R. Saturday night.

And when it comes to guys who have the same first and last names (or close enough), I’ll take Phillip Phillips over Cam Cameron.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Rice leads way as Wizards top T-Wolves in Summer League play

Posted on 14 July 2014 by WNST Staff

The Washington Wizards downed the Minnesota Timberwolves 67-59 in the final game of the day in the Samsung NBA Summer League 2014 played on the campus of UNLV.

Glen Rice Jr. came out of the gate on fire scoring 13 of the Wizards 26 first quarter points on 3 for 3 from three-point range and connecting on four -of-seven from the charity stripe. Washington held a 26-21 advantage after the first quarter of play due to Rice’s sharp shooting. Zach LaVine and Alexey Shved combined for 12 of the Timberwolves 21 points.

Both teams cooled off in the second quarter and the game was tied at 35 at the end of the half. Minnesota held Washington to just nine second quarter points. Washington finished the half 12-of-29 while Minnesota finished 11-of-32.

Rice and Jamil Wilson combined for 14 third quarter points for the Wizards and sparked an 11-0 run late in the quarter and to take a 10 point lead, with just over a minute to play in the quarter Minnesota stopped the run on a pair of free-throws made by LaVine. Washington held a ten point lead, 57-47, at the end of the quarter.

Both teams will take Monday off and will return to close out pool play on Tuesday, the Timberwolves will take on the Houston Rockets at 1:30 p.m. in the Thomas & Mack Center while the Wizards will take on the Miami Heat at 3:30 p.m. in the same venue.

(Recap courtesy of NBA)

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Rice, Porter lead Wizards past Hawks in Summer League play

Posted on 12 July 2014 by WNST Staff

Game Recap: Wizards 90, Hawks 74

Glen Rice Jr. and Otto Porter combined for 47 points as they powered the Washington Wizards to a 90-74 victory over the Atlanta Hawks on the second day of play in the summer dessert classic in Las Vegas.

The Wizards trailed by as many as eight points in the game and were held to just 12 points in the second quarter. However, the second half was all Wizards as they outscored the Hawks 55 to 33.

Porter led all scorers with 25 points for the Wizards while Adreian Payne chipped in a team-high 12 points for the Hawks.

The Wizards held a 23-17 lead after the opening quarter of play. The Hawks struggled out of the gate connecting on just one basket in the first eight minutes of the quarter. Mike Muscala and Walter Tavares both tallied four points for the Hawks in the quarter while Rice chipped in eight for the Wizards.

The Hawks closed the second quarter on a 6-2 run and held a seven point lead, 41-35, at halftime. Atlanta’s offensive output was driven by Larmar Patterson who chipped in eight points and Steven Holt who added five. The Wizards were held to just 12 second quarter points.

The third quarter was all Wizards as they fought back and tied the game up at 47, at the 6:40 mark in the quarter. They continued to dominate the quarter earning their largest lead of the quarter at 13. Washington continued to dominate in the fourth quarter, expanding their lead to as many as 20.

Paul Millsap was on hand to watch his younger brother Abraham who is a member of the Hawks summer league team.

Both teams return to action on Sunday, the Hawks (0-1) taking on the NBA D-League Select team at 3:30 p.m. and the Wizards (1-0) will host Minnesota at 7:30 p.m.

(Recap courtesy of NBA)

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Bovada makes Cavs favorite to win title with LeBron, Wizards 33/1

Posted on 11 July 2014 by WNST Staff

Courtesy of Bovada, (www.Bovada.lv, Twitter: @BovadaLV).
“There is no question that with the recent news of LeBron going back home to Cleveland that they are the favorites to win the NBA Championship next season at 4-1. With the Eastern Conference being much weaker and essentially only a handful of teams that can give LeBron and the Cavs a run for their money, it would be a shock if they do not at least make the Conference Finals. The Heat in turn, who now may lose Bosh also, have gone from 4-1 to 50-1, basically the Cavs and Heat flipping odds from what we had them the day after the Spurs won the Championship. This shows how much of an impact a player like LeBron has on odds. The last comparable situation was when Peyton Manning signing with the Broncos dropped them from 75-1 to 10-1 in a blink of an eye.”

Kevin Bradley, Bovada.lv Sportsbook Manager


Odds to win 2015 NBA Championship 

Cleveland Cavaliers                   4/1

San Antonio Spurs                    5/1

Oklahoma City Thunder              6/1

Chicago Bulls                            7/1

Houston Rockets                      8/1

Los Angeles Clippers                10/1

Indiana Pacers                          18/1

Golden State Warriors               25/1

Portland Trailblazers                  25/1

Dallas Mavericks                       33/1

Los Angeles Lakers                   33/1

Washington Wizards                  33/1

Brooklyn Nets                           40/1

New York Knicks                       40/1

Toronto Raptors                        40/1

Memphis Grizzlies                     50/1

Miami Heat                                50/1

New Orleans Pelicans                50/1

Denver Nuggets                        66/1

Phoenix Suns                            66/1

Atlanta Hawks                           75/1

Boston Celtics                          75/1

Charlotte Hornets                      75/1

Detroit Pistons                          100/1

Minnesota Timberwolves            100/1

Milwaukee Bucks                       200/1

Orlando Magic                          200/1

Philadelphia 76ers                     200/1

Sacramento Kings                     200/1

Utah Jazz                                  200/1


Average Points per game in the 2014-2015 NBA Regular Season – LeBron James        

Over/Under                   25.5


Average Rebounds per game in the 2014-2015 NBA Regular Season – LeBron James  

Over/Under                   7.5                                           


Average Assists per game in the 2014-2015 NBA Regular Season – LeBron James       

Over/Under                   7


Will LeBron James win the 2014-2015 NBA MVP?

Yes      3/2

No        1/2

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NBA HOFer Barry thinks Cavaliers favorites in East after LeBron sigining

Posted on 11 July 2014 by WNST Audio

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Dorsey's Dugout - Andre Johnson's Best Destination and Domino Effect of NBA Free Agency

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Dorsey’s Dugout – Andre Johnson’s Best Destination and Domino Effect of NBA Free Agency

Posted on 11 July 2014 by Nick Dorsey


Andre Johnson

The longtime Texan star is entering the 12th season of his career and Andre Johnson wants out of Houston. Johnson is 33 years old and the light at the end of the tunnel is getting just a bit brighter. After going through a 2-14 season while hauling in passes from Case Keenum on a consistent basis, Johnson deserves an opportunity to be dealt to a contender.

Houston is not far out from contending for the AFC South division title and a shot back into the AFC playoff race, but they are missing the most crucial piece of a franchise. Johnson was patient enough to see if general manager Rick Smith would add a potential franchise quarterback through the draft, but Smith waited around to the fourth round to draft former Pitt QB Tom Savage.

With a quarterback battle ahead in training camp featuring Ryan Fitzpatrick, Case Keenum and Tom Savage, Johnson has a right to be displeased with his situation. A player that has accounted for 221 receptions and 3,005 receiving yards the past two seasons deserves better than the weak QB depth he is presented with at this point in his career.

There are four teams rumored to be interested in the former Hurricane standouts services according to sources around the league. Two of the rumored teams standout as the perfect fit for the six-time pro-bowler.

After an off-season that featured an arms race between two AFC powerhouses, New England might not be done yet making big moves. Everyone saw the struggles Tom Brady had to endure last year with inconsistency at the wide receiver position. New England would be the number one ideal fit for Johnson at this time.

Tom Brady is desperate for a number one receiver and getting a dependable target like Johnson would certainly tickle his fancy. With the uncertainty of Amendola and Gronk’s health, bringing in Johnson would ease Brady’s comfort since Johnson hasn’t missed a game during the last two seasons.

This transaction is a possibility with the familiarity between new Texans head coach Bill O’Brien and Bill Belichick. The Patriots front office has pulled off trades for aging wide outs before such as Randy Moss and Chad Johnson, so this situation is not unrealistic.

There were all kinds of rumors during the off-season about O’Briens interest in acquiring Patriots backup quarterback Ryan Mallett. With New England selecting Jimmy Garoppolo early in the 2014 NFL draft, Mallett is an asset that could be dealt. The Texans need another potential starting quarterback to at least compete in training camp and O’Brien has coached the former Razorback.

With the potential interest in Mallett, the Patriots front office could make this trade a possibility. New England would most likely have to give up a draft pick or two to go along with Mallett to get Johnson in a Pats uniform. This trade would certainly be worth the price because it would make New England the front-runner to represent the AFC in next year’s Super Bowl.

The other destination that could be a reality is the Carolina Panthers. After losing Steve Smith and other parts of the wide receiver corps, Carolina is lacking a true number one target.

The Panthers selected former Seminole Kelvin Benjamin in the first round, but that is not enough for Cam Newton. In a division that features the Saints with the Falcons and Bucs back on the rise, Carolina needs to make this move.

Getting a reliable target like Johnson as Newton’s go-to wide out would keep Carolina in contention for the NFC South title. Adding Johnson to the mix to go along with Benjamin and Olsen would make for a good three-headed receiving corps for Newton to work with.

Benjamin is entering his rookie season and will have to adjust to the speed of the next level. With Johnson entering the mix, it would allow for Benjamin to excel in the red zone while learning to stretch the rest of the field. It would than be up to Johnson and Olsen to work the rest of the field.

NBA Free Agency Dominoes

The NBA free agency period is unlike any other professional sports free agency. The NHL and NFL free agent markets open and teams rush right away to sign the top tier prospects. The NBA period is just a waiting game to see where the first star chooses to go and then the dominoes fall at a fast rate.

The first domino is LeBron James and his decision has the biggest impact on the league. Everyone is awaiting the “Decision 2.0” on whether he goes back home to Cleveland or South Beach because it determines where the rest of the stars of the free agent market go.

Every fan of the sport is frustrated in playing this waiting game, but is there anyone who can be more disturbed than Chris Bosh? The former member of the Heat’s big three has a max deal offer from the Houston Rockets on the table. Bosh is waiting on LeBron because if the King heads back down south, he will follow.

Bosh is playing this waiting game with LeBron, but he should take the max deal offer and become a Houston Rocket. Although the Rockets are in the more difficult Western Conference, the Rockets would have a much better shot at winning than the Heat.

With Bosh entering the mix with James Harden and Dwight Howard, there would be a new big three in the NBA. Harden is a versatile player who can get the rest of his teammates involved regularly or take over a game himself. Howard would make for a dominant presence inside and Bosh would compliment that style the best.

Chris Bosh during his days with the Heat tended to favor shooting around the perimeter. With Howard running the show inside, it would allow for Bosh to do what he feels most comfortable doing at this point in his career.

The Rockets need to react fast with Chandler Parsons signing an offer sheet with the Dallas Mavericks. If LeBron does not make a decision within the next few days, Houston will have to essentially make a salary cap decision to either match the Mavericks offer or hope that Bosh comes to Texas.

The Kings decision does more than just change up destinations for the free agent pool, it changes the landscape of the league. When the Akron native elected to go to south beach, the league went into a power team format. Franchises were signing several stars to one team in attempt to grab the Larry O’Brien trophy.

If the King elects to go back to Cleveland, the short era of superstar teams comes to an end. The Super team era showed its success during the four-season run as the Heat won two out of four championships. The other two losses were to teams that weren’t considered lineups with one or two superstars, but teams that played well together with several different complimentary pieces.
With the success that the Spurs have had in the past few years showing how they all work and play together as one unit, the landscape of the league could be swinging back to that style. When LeBron makes his decision final, that will be something to watch out for as the rest of the players find their homes.

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