The demise of the Celtics + ALL the coaching and free agency latest + NBA Finals talk
Miami and Denver are on the verge of unprecedented twin sweeps in the conference finals and we've got our own thorough sweep here of all the around-the-league latest
Teams that lose the first three games in a best-of-seven NBA playoff series, as is coming up more than we’ve ever heard the line this time of year, are 0-149 in league history.
Consider that our way of warning you that we will be blatantly jumping to some conclusions, on top of dishing our latest newsy morsels, in this edition of the Monday Musings.
Conclusion No. 1: The Miami Heat are going to the NBA Finals as only the second No. 8 seed to ever get that far in #thisleague. That’s right: We’re deeming the Eastern Conference finals finito and giving Boston zero chance, based on fresh data from The Stein Line Basketball Supercomputer Index that we just made up, to become the first team on hardwood to overturn a 3-0 series deficit after the Celtics’ embarrassing 26-point road surrender to the Heat in Sunday night’s Game 3.
Conclusion No. 2: We’re prematurely putting the Denver Nuggets in their first-ever Finals, too, after Nikola Jokić and Co. seized a 3-0 series lead over the Los Angeles Lakers with Saturday night’s steely fourth quarter to seal Game 3 on the road at The Crypt. Don’t ever write off a LeBron James team … so reads one of the NBA’s most oft-cited maxims of the past two decades. Well … guess what? We just did. With the Lakers facing the most daunting deficit in basketball, in the 38-year-old James’ 20th season, it’s never been safer to take that leap. Doubly so when Jokić is clicking so well with Jamal Murray and the rest of his supporting cast. (I agreed with most of this George Karl tweet about how much Denver is doing with continuity and a roster that, apart from Jokić, has actually combined for just one measly All-Star appearance … courtesy of DeAndre Jordan.)
Conclusion No. 3: Future Hall of Famer Carmelo Anthony’s unexpected retirement announcement Monday morning is way too significant to cram into this fully formed story. So more on Melo will be forthcoming … starting with my next #thisleague UNCUT podcast alongside Turner Sports’ Chris Haynes.
Read on for the rest of my around-the-league latest …