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2017-2018 NBA Season Preview – Western Conference

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2017 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot

Northwest Division

Portland Trail Blazers

Dame D.O.L.L.A. may be in the studio rapping with Lil’Wayne right now for the follow up to ‘The Letter O’ album. But Damian Lillard would much rather be on court balling with Carmelo Anthony next season for the following year of number zero’s campaign. With ‘Melo the superstar baller slash rapper would be able to chill for a few seconds. Although you know when it comes down to that much time on the clock D Lill is anything but that or not in his zone. Lillard, C.J. McCollum and Evan Turner had a lot to undertake last year in RIP City, but with Carmelo in town they’d all come up smelling of roses. Dame’s got bars, but he needs rings too like any platinum rapper if he wants to be one of the all time greats. There’s a reason the PDX throwback he rocks is Bill Walton. And for the mic rocking hip hop head it’s got nothing to do with the Greatful Dead.

Denver Nuggets

Josh Childress looks to taste the thin air of Mile High City by inking a contract with these Denver Nuggets. And although it’s not the 2000’s anymore its a nice addition to the big-three from the retired legends Big3 Ice Cube summer circuit. Kenneth Faried, Emmanuel Mudiay and Nikola Jokic are no joke. And now Paul Millsap’s addition looks to bulk this team up to the grit of the new West Coast Memphis Grizzlies. And with the opponent unbreathable atmosphere being their Sixth Man this could be the year Denver reaches the clouds.

Minnesota Timberwolves

But if you want to talk about a real big-three however then look no further than the trees of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Say goodbye to Zach Lavine and Ricky Rubio. But hello to Jimmy ‘Buckets’. The Butler is here at Minneapolis surface and joins huge man Karl-Anthony Townes and Canadian Andrew Wiggins for the best grande trois since Garnett, Sprewell and Cassell almost toppled the Shaq and Kobe Lakers. And with Jeff Teague and former multiple ‘Sixth Man Of The Year’ Jamal Crawford in backcourt reserve the future of this franchise looks as good as their best in the association new Nike jerseys. But the roster is a sub or two thin. Looks like this team on court will be checking their wrists to see just how far their Fitbits can go.

Oklahoma City Thunder

Everyone in Magic’s Lakerland belives hometown hooper Paul George and UCLA grad Russell Westbrook will team up again next year, but to join the L.A. they apparantly love and want like California sun in Seattle after summer. And you thought last Summer was crazy. But purple reign or not, the Thunder are set to pour right now. Even if the MVP’s impressive former backcourt running mate Victor Oladipo joins Kevin Durant out of town. The Thunder lost him and the Sabonis son for what next year could be rendered null and void. But just like James Harden this team is known for raining stars. Steven Adams and Enes Kanter anybody? Until OKC’s jerseys stop reading zero the West is Westbrooks to win from his former partner. And why the hell not?

Utah Jazz

Gordon Hayward was the Malone and Stockton face and future of this franchise. But in a pick and roll he was gone in a flash this summer to continue his career chapter with the storied Celtics. And then walking papers joined by Boris Diaw and George Hill. At least the Jazz still have Joe Johnson, Derrick Favors and Dante Exum on the same hymn sheet. Not to mention Spanish key Ricky Rubio. But if Utah don’t give Frenchmen Rudy Gobert some real help then he will be stifled like a Salt Lake drought.

Pacific Division

Golden State Warriors

What else have the Kevin Durant, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Andre Igudola Golden State Warriors add this year you say?! A championship! Oh and actually this offseason the swag of former Laker Sixth Man Nick Young. Now P and Iggy are back together that’s all this dynasty needs to be dubbed champions again. It starts with Durant and ends with Steph. And what does the U.B. in dubs stand for? “U be crazy if you think anyone’s cooking without Curry”! The only way these Warriors are leaving their Golden State is with a big market move across the Golden Gate Bridge to San Francisco.

Phoenix Suns

Nothing is set in stone these days in a league where contracts change quicker than the time it takes the ink to dry. But the sun isn’t setting in Phoenix with guys like Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight still around the mix of veterans like Tyson Chandler and rookie future Josh Jackson. And how about the Mamba moments of Devin Booker on the box score? Forget 81 this kid could go for 100 in the next 82. Wilting Chamberlain’s almost century old record. If Phoenix don’t rise before the Arizona dust settles than their number one son may just do that. Especially with no one to Kobe the ball too.

Sacramento Kings

Cousins may no longer relate. Alumni alinging with fellow U.K. Wildcat Anthony Davis in the Pelicans’ New Orleans. But fellow Kentucky grad Willie-Cauley Stein is ready for the Kings throne with sophomore Buddy Hield and dual rookies De’Aaron Fox (also of the University of Kentucky) and Justin Jackson. This team looks to be shooting for the luck of the stars with a double-barrel in the form of their new fantastic four assembling together. And in adding two more big names in the veteran form of DeMarcus Cousins 10 years ago Zach Randolph and dunking legend Vince Carter the paper looks good. These Kings are a long way from LeBron’s land. But the cowbells will still ring out for some Sleep Train Arena waking fun for all in attendance.

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Los Angeles Lakers

President and greatest Point Guard of all time Earvin Johnson believes Drake lookalike and Kidd play-alike, Lonzo Ball has the magic to be the future of the Los Angeles Lakers. And apparantly so does Rob Lowe (Pelinka) and the rest of Hollywood too. So much so they were willing to defrost and drain the ice veins of D’Angelo Russell to load no more. And if that wasn’t enough in the season they are set to retire both numbers 8 and 24 for Kobe Bryant, the team with the second pick in the draft behind the 76ers for the second straight year are going two for two yet again. After Kyle Kumza showed out in Summer League championship play he and Lonzo could ball out like Ingram (who is said to have grown to almost 7 feet) and Zubac last year, Clarkson and Russell the year before and Randle and Nance Jr. the year before that. All that raw superstar-esque talent and some valued veteran additions of the young Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and solid big Brook Lopez make for a team of the future. And just imagine if they really did add George and James. Paul and LeBron would take Lakerland to tinseltown. But right now the Lakers may have a star of the future or four or more. So long as they learn from Lamar and the Kardashains and don’t turn this script into the Lavar Ball show.

Los Angeles Clippers

What is Lob City without CP3? Well two big towers than can dunk in the form of ketchup and mustard duo Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan all committed for the long runway. But as these Clippers have been short back and side clipped, lets hope Doc’s son Austin Rivers knows how to pass and be the player he was meant to be down the river. The Clips also added former purple and gold Sixth Man Lou Will, but with the Lakers looking to take their land back if the Clippers don’t add more staples then their future will look more ugly than those old uniforms Nike finally gave them the sense to replace.

Southwest Division

Houston Rockets

The beard just got even bigger. Eurostepping into a kingsman land, James Harden has helped recruit Point God Chris Laul to dynamic duo form one of the best one-two punches in the league. One that will make back-up Eric Gordon the Sixth Man of the next couple of years. And the x-factor Trevor Ariza is still around to solve all of Houston’s problems. Forget a propelled cliche reference. These Rockets are already high enough to be in their own airspace. Harden may not have got last years MVP but he and CP3 could give former teammate Russell Westbrook and Paul George a run for an even higher accolade.

San Antonio Spurs

Kawhi Leonard is finally smiling. Maybe because he knows that defensive or not he really and truly is one of the best players in the league. And if LaMarcus Aldridge really does become the Tim Duncan mark two he was always meant to be then fundamentally no one is beating a team that still has Tony Parker and amazingly a “this is 40” Manu Ginobili. Who follows his clutch block on Harden in the playoffs by re-upping for one more trip around the block like Spains greatest Pau Gasol. And if that wasn’t enough All Star Rudy Gay has joined the best bench in basketball. Happy Days. Even the T-Bot would crack a smile.

New Orleans Pelicans

Speaking of Spurs that click. You all remember when Tim Duncan and David Robinson went all Hakeem Olaujawon and Ralph Sampson in Texas?! Well now in the swamps of Lousiana former Wildcats Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins shape up to be an even bigger, more dominant version of all of that. And now journeyman superstar Rajon Rondo completes that Kentucky connection, the U.K. alumnus may now finally have found a place he can lay his hat home. Nothing is bigger than those two towers and still the leagues foremost prototype point right now. And no one has a bigger heart than star Jrue Holiday. The rest of the West msy be taking an early vacation once these greats get to work.

Memphis Grizzlies

Zach Randolph, Rudy Gay and now Tony Allen. The grit may be going out of the Grizzlies, but they still grind. No matter how big the contract of Chandler Parsons or the potential of Tyreke Evans. You just can’t deny the one-two punch from one of the best and most underrated Point Guard and center combos in experts at their position Marc Gasol and Mike Conley. Junior and the brother will still pick and roll until the suede shoes have no soul. But if this team really want to get out the blue than they need to add more sequins to this outfit like the King Elvis in his crowning Vegas. Otherwise it’s Memphis bleak round here.

Dallas Mavericks

Can we all appreciate true one of a kind Maverick in team and nature, Dirk Nowitzki whilst he’s still playing? Before he joins his Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett peers in rafter retirement before the hall. The blonde bomber who let it fly like a Larry Bird from downtown Dallas is still doing it like Debbie. And number 41 has always guaranteed that many wins and even some champagne campaign champion cigars with Mark once. He’s a winner worthy of his millions and with Harrison Barnes, Nerlens Noel, Wesley Matthews, Dallas greats Devin Harris and J.J. Barea and Steph brother Seth Curry in this forever evolving and revolving complimentary mix these Mavs could surprise you as much as the many more years we’ll still see Nowitzki on no quit, Dirk-dominant form.

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Is Howard’s End In Hollywood?

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Is Howard's End In Hollywood

Should have bought that Dwight Howard number 12 Lakers jersey I saw in TJ Maxx for half off back in the day. Seriously though if Dwight can return to the Lake Show then there’s hope for my hairline yet…

…there’s not!

“Soft…soft!”

Kobe Bryant mouths this whilst shaking his head in dissing dismay from the baseline whilst staring down Dwight Howard on the other half of the court. Now a Houston Rocket the less than perfect pair have a problem…and it’s all getting flagrant.

Once upon a time in Hollywood with Mike D’Antoni running the show with an ageing Steve Nash, Hollywood’s Laker reality show was playing fantasy, legendary name Basketball again like the time they brought in late in their career legends like Karl Malone and Gary Payton to help raise banners like the point of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar or logo of Jerry West. But when they picked up Magic man Dwight Howard who even took Orlando’s Mickey Mouse kingdom on his broad back all the way to the Finals against the Lakers, they expected D12 and KB24 to be the new generation Shaq and Kobe. After all Dwight Howard was a man of steel too.

And oh how they were Shaq and Kobe 2…but in completely all the wrong way. It turned out to be Batman vs Superman without the dawn of a justice league, or even their mothers having the same name. Kobe’s beef with Dwight made his repaired relationship with Shaq look like Japanese cows without the massage and feeding rituals that make their Mamba city namesakes cuts the best in the business…now served in Shaquille’s restaurant with more onion rings. And when they met the following season after the death of another dynasty to be, this time Dwight was the little red corvette and Kobe the brick wall unable to be felled or floored like the one in Berlin. Baptizing him like that time in Orlando with his most dynamic dunk.

Since going from the Orlando Magic to Magic smiles in Hollywood Howard has switched more teams than your 2K partner when you’ve already picked to play as the Lakers. He’s also received his fair share of off court and locker room problems including some chemistry cancer concerns. And even in this off-season, either looking to make some headlines or free agent publicity stunts he’s come out and said he’d be open to returning to the Lakers (…erm) and that Kobe was right (he already knows).

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Now most in Lakerland laughed at the social media scoffed idea. Especially with a front-court force more formidable than anything the association has to offer, lead by new big man legend Anthony Davis. Following in the sneaker steps of Mikan, Wilt, Kareem, Shaq and Pau to truly be the new Shaq and Kobe with King LeBron James. But when his old New Orleans Pelicans reunited Wildcat brother DeMarcus Cousins went down with another season threatening injury last week the Lakers were forced to look elsewhere already, like filling out their final roster spot with Andre Igudola was a ring of last week’s past, or Carmelo was one long rumored Anthony never meant to be. Bursting the banana boat like a CP3 nix.

And although the Lakers have been linked with the arc of Joakim Noah or the Zaza land of Pachulia and with plenty of other big assets still on the market like Marcin Gortat or Amir Johnson, will we see Dwight Howard eating tacos and yelling with LeBron on Twitter this Tuesday as we all unfollow like too many tweets (my bad)? Bringing Howard back to Hollywood seems sillier than bringing the LaVar Ball show back to this Kardashian town. Because besides they already have the all dunking and blocking JaVale McGee who is worthy of a start with James (42) clapping like throwing up chalk. All as this hair blown out center throws it down again and again, coast to coast in California. But apparently there’s a mutual interest…what is this Tinder? Will this just be the makings of another Michael Beasley or make ’em dance Lance Stephenson meme team? Still the Lakers need more in reserve and Dwight needs this for his revenge to the past years that have taken his career from the red caped sun to being newspaper fodder to each cities equivalent of the Daily Planet. Time to rewrite all those who wrote you off Jimmy Olsen.

Read all about it, at the end of press next week Dwight Howard could be a Los Angeles Laker yet again.

News just in…I can’t believe I’m writing this.

Who would of thought it?

Certainly not Kobe.

But it’s the King’s town now.

And after all in this LeBron ‘Space Jam’ scripted season for the Los Angeles Lakers you know Hollywood loves a redemption story too.

Superman returns?

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Boogie’s Productions Down Again

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Boogie's Productions Down Again

Cousins injured again…we can’t relate to that.

We refuse.

When former Sacramento star and New Orleans Pelican DeMarcus Cousins joined the Kevin Durant, Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green Golden State Warriors to begin last season critics dubbed this superteam unfair.

What was unfair however was the ACL injury that kept Boogie sidelined for most of the season and then the quad injury on top of that in the playoffs that made sure the Warriors wouldn’t be dancing in their final chapter in Golden State.

But as D.C. made a Cali move too like the Dubs across the Golden Gate to San Francisco, heading to LeBron’s Lakerland with former frontcourt friend Anthony Davis, what was really unfair is what’s just come out of a practice run this week.

Cousins has tore his ACL again in a horrible twist of fate.

This games God’s people.

When DeMarcus reunited with the same former New Orleans big man that rocked his jersey in beautiful All Star tribute a couple of seasons back when they briefly flew together as Pelicans this Summer, the Lakers furthered their favourite status like tapping that heart on Twitter. Even if the Clippers ended up being the ones that got Kawhi Leonard…and Paul George too for the new battle of Los Angeles, raging against the Lakers Hollywood machine, the Lake Show have the ‘Space Jam 2’ of the King and the ‘brow. Not to mention the difference maker like rising star Kyle Kuzma in the veteran one of Cousins.

Either one of them will blow, or both, as the other will show he’s still got it. Giving the West’s best the biggest force of an interchangeable frontcourt. As the Lakers could either go with the more muscle version of a Tim Duncan and David Robinson twin towers in the Pelican reunited Kentucky Wildcats of Davis and Cousins and ‘Bron. Or the most dynamic duo since Shaq and Kobe of James and A.D. and the one young core star who didn’t get switched for this franchise player in Kuz, who could form a big three if the injured Cousins isn’t already still a part of one. Despite the writing off medical report.

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And we haven’t even got to his Kentucky alumni Rajon Rondo led backcourt, or last year’s all dunking and blocking big headband and hair spark JaVale McGee. A gym rat who re-upped after almost going for both the Defensive Player Of The Year and Most Improved Player award in the first month of last seasons 82 campaign.

The Lakers are going to need him and that first wind of last year now more than ever.

Or the California club have some decisions to make for who to put in purple and gold for their almost meant to be final roster spot (DON’T AMNESTY!). Do they still wait for another former Warrior in Sixth Man, defensive legend Andre Igudola? Or do they leave him and the long rumoured other Anthony in Carmelo and pick up another big? Guys like Nené, Amir Johnson, Joakim Noah, Kenneth Faried, Zaza Pachulia and Marcin Gortat are still on the market like fresh fruit stalls. And even Dwight Howard of all people have expressed (more like blatantly begged for publicity) for a return to Lakerland after his Hollywood divorce.

Yeah right…”soft”!

Because we have no idea when Boogie will be back. Or if he will even be the same player when he returns. Or if he even was before this injury happened. But despite history rewriting so many careers crippled by injury we still believe. We still believe he has superstar status and could be the X-factor difference maker when he returns late in the game to this Hollywood scripted rivalry like he almost was last season in the Finals against Toronto as he flips it. You saw him almost become a Splash Brother with that three, so just you wait until you see him downtown in STAPLES this season when it’s all said and buzzer beater done.

The bridge is far from over.

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