Trust and Respect / Mistrust and Disrespect

There was the first steps toward closure today when the family of Michael Brown was able to hold a funeral for him today.

Of course, there is still a lot that will still happen in the next couple of weeks and months that will hopefully bring closure and justice for everyone that's been affected: the family of Michael Brown, the police officer involved and his family, the community of Ferguson, the county police and the St Louis area. 

I'll share some of those links in a separate post. Two recent articles have made me think a little bit more about how we got here:

NBA Free Agency 2014...Begin!!

Baring an unexpected surprise, it looks like Carmelo Anthony will return to the Knicks as expected. It will be mildly entertaining to hear the reasons and of course all of the anguish that he must have gone through to make his decision.

LeBron James will be another big name that we should hear from a lot today. Based on all of the reporting so far, I think it will come down to one of two scenarios: He'll stay at Miami for a shorter term contract with a player option (2 years + option), or he'll return home to Cleveland for a 4 year deal. Based on what he does, then Bosh will either stay or sign with Houston.

What about the Bulls? Well, I wouldn't mind if they targeted a certain Spaniard.

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Melo on the Bulls? Final Thoughts

NBA Free Agency is set to begin in less than two hours, and although there may be a few surprises here and there, the people that will really get things going are Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James (and by association Wade and Bosh).

Has my mind been changed on what will happen over the next couple of days?

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Melo on the Bulls? Fool me once...

As it became clear that New York was not going to make the playoffs, stories began to bubble up on the possibility of Carmelo Anthony wanting to opt out of his contract to join another team. Since then there has been a pretty steady stream of official and unofficial reports that lay down the narrative that Melo wants to join the Bulls, and the Bulls want to make it happen. 

Is this really the case? Or is this the same story of another potential free agent using everything in his power to increase his leverage by creating interest? Haven't we seen this story before, with Tracy McGrady and even more recently with the likes of LeBron, Wade, Bosh, etc? Haven't we learned out lesson yet?

Let's break down some of what we've heard.

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Idol Thoughts: Introduction

If there is anything my recent trip to Japan this year taught me, it's that I've been a fan of vocal idols for longer than I realized.


(A picture of the vocal idol group, Wake Up, Girls! All of them play fictionalized versions of themselves in the anime)

I'd like to introduce an occasional series here called Idol Thoughts, a quick dip into the world of vocal idols and the things that happen in the real world and online. I hope you'll find my random musing and thoughts useful.


NBA Finals Prediction

I'm going to be as optimistic as everyone else and hope for a fun entertaining series. A lot of history to be made either way for both franchises.

Spurs in 7.


2014 NBA Playoffs: Round 1 Quick Review, Round 2 Quick Picks

...And this is probably why I wouldn't be able to do this for a living. 

Here's the quick review of my picks, and a little bit more detail:

Eastern Conference

#1 Indiana vs #8 Atlanta: Indiana in 6 - Actual Result: Indiana in 7

It turns out that Indiana has a lot more structural issues, and Atlanta is better coached than we gave them credit for. In the end, Atlanta went cold in Game 7 on a majority of open looks that were falling earlier in the series, and Indiana did what they needed to do to advance. 

#2 Miami vs #7 Charlotte: Miami in 5 - Actual Result: Miami in 4

Al Jefferson got injured in Game 1, and although he continued to play they didn't have enough to win.

#3 Toronto vs #6 Brooklyn: Brooklyn in 7 - Actual Result: Brooklyn in 7

I figured that Toronto's relative inexperience would hurt them in a long series. This series brought back the surprising return of Joe Johnson to playoff relevance.

#4 Chicago vs #5 Washington: Chicago in 6 - Actual Result: Washington in 5

I'll do a longer write up, but Washington came prepared with a better strategy and executed better throughout the series. If there was a perception that Washington would lack poise going into the playoffs, there was very little evidence of that in this series. Great start for Washington, and another disappointing playoff exit for Chicago.

Western Conference

#1 San Antonio vs #8 Dallas: San Antonio in 5 - Actual Result: San Antonio in 7

A fun, well-coached series as Carlisle did his best to find ways for Dallas to keep up with San Antonio. In the end, regular season San Antonio had more than enough in Game 7 to pull away.

#2 Oklahoma City vs #7 Memphis: Oklahoma City in 6 - Actual Result: Oklahoma City in 7

Who knows what might have been? OKC never looked comfortable against Memphis, but with Randolph suspended after throwing the punch on Adams, and Conley limited by a hamstring injury, would they have been able to win Game 7 in Oklahoma City? 

#3 Los Angeles vs #6 Golden State: Los Angeles in 7 - Actual Result: Los Angeles in 7

Off-court issues aside, this was the high scoring affair we all expected it might be. Oddly enough, I thought that Golden State's organizational issues were more internally divisive than Los Angeles'. Los Angeles at least got to bond together over their issues. 

#4 Houston vs #5 Portland: Houston in 6 - Actual Result: Portland in 7

Similar to the other 4-5 matchup, I underrated the coaching on one team. This series had some wonderful individual performances from Aldridge and Lillard. Of course, it had the fantastic end to the series:

Now what about Round 2?

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