Eric Freeman

  • BDL's 2014-15 NBA Playoff Previews: Golden State Warriors vs. Memphis Grizzlies

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 1 day ago

    How They Got Here

    The problem is that it came with a cost. Mike Conley entered the series having missed the last four games with an unspecified but apparently very uncomfortable right foot injury (presumably something related to the plantar fascia) but looked plenty capable to start the series. Unfortunately, he left in the third quarter of an eventual Game 3 win with a face injury that required surgery to repair several fractures around the left eye. Conley missed Games 4 and 5, and the Memphis offense appeared worse without him to direct traffic. He still looked quite bruised when interviewed during Wednesday's clincher, and it's fair to guess that he will miss Game 1 and possibly more of the series with Golden State.

    Head to Head

    Likely Starting Lineups

    Key Matchups

  • Hawks thump Nets in Game 6, advance to face Wizards

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 1 day ago

    It took six games, but the Atlanta Hawks finally looked like the team that coasted to the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference. After seeing their excellent starting lineup break out in a pivotal Game 5 win, the Hawks traveled to the Barclays Center for Friday night's Game 6, got out to a hot start and bulldozed the Nets in the third quarter for an eventual 111-87 win. They will now move on to face the No. 5 seed Washington Wizards, who have been resting since sweeping the Toronto Raptors out of the first round.

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  • Clippers outlast Spurs in another thriller, force Game 7

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 2 days ago

    The best series of the first round of the 2015 NBA Playoffs is going the full seven games. It increasingly looks like a shame that it has to end at all.

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    Facing elimination on Thursday night at the AT&T Center, the Los Angeles Clippers outlasted the host San Antonio Spurs 102-96 in Game 6 to force a deciding Game 7 at Staples Center on Saturday night. Despite their fifth very close contest, this was neither team's best game. Rather, the Clippers pulled out their second road victory of the series with a combination of the late-game execution, quality decision-making, and lucky breaks they lacked in Games 2 and 5.

     

    Whatever happens, it should be fun. See you Saturday night.

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  • Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo ejected for late hit on Bulls' Mike Dunleavy

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 2 days ago

    The Milwaukee Bucks entered the NBA postseason with many fans excited to see the playoff debut of amazingly talented 20-year-old forward Giannis Antetokounmpo. Unfortunately, it looks as if the budding star is leaving the first round under shameful circumstances.

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    Already down big to the Bulls in the second quarter, the Bucks lost Antetokounmpo for the rest of Game 6 (and likely a few more games) following a clear-cut ejection. With the Bulls up 58-28 with roughly 1:35 remaining in the first half, Bulls forward Mike Dunleavy launched and made a three-pointer from the left wing. As Dunleavy finished his follow-through, Antetokounmpo rushed at him and delivered a check to the midsection to send him to the floor. Take a look:

    Dunleavy made his additional free throw to give the Bulls a 62-28 lead. They entered the halftime break up 65-33, nearly doubling up the host Bucks in a thoroughly dominant first half.

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  • Grizzlies hold off desperate Blazers, win Game 5 to finish series

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 3 days ago

    With or without their star point guard, the Memphis Grizzlies appeared to have enough to get past the undermanned Portland Trail Blazers in their first-round NBA playoff series. Despite a valiant effort from Portland, Memphis confirmed as much in a 99-93 Game 5 win that had a great deal in common with their three series-opening victories.

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    Playing without the injured Mike Conley for the second straight game, the Grizzlies bounced back from an outlying Game 4 loss by exerting their stylistic dominance for the fourth straight contest, frustrating opposing stars LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard yet again, and getting enough offense from several sources to make up for the loss of their floor general. While this was not an especially competitive series, the Grizzlies will go into a daunting conference semifinals matchup with the NBA-best Golden State Warriors with a great deal of confidence no matter Conley's status.

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  • Grizzlies' Mike Conley shows off badly bruised face, gives status update

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 3 days ago

    The absence of star point guard Mike Conley has thrown a wrench into the postseason plans of the Memphis Grizzlies. After taking in inadvertent elbow in the third quarter of an eventual Game 3 win, Conley underwent surgery Monday to repair multiple facial fractures and has already missed Games 4 and 5 of the team's first-round series with the Portland Trail Blazers. The Grizzlies have not provided a specific timetable for Conley's return, but it would not be surprising if he missed several more contests. Memphis has received strong performances from guards Beno Udrih, Courtney Lee, and Nick Calathes in this series (both before and after Conley's injury), but it's clear that the West's No. 5 seed would like their steady, capable floor general in the lineup as soon as possible.

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  • Spurs eke out massive road win over Clippers in pivotal Game 5

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 4 days ago

    The first-round playoff series between the Los Angeles Clippers and San Antonio Spurs has been tight enough for games to be decided by a single decision, shot, or call. Tuesday night's Game 5 at Staples Center came down to a few inches. The Spurs escaped with a 111-107 win, a 3-2 lead, and the chance to end the series at home in Thursday's Game 6, but things very easily could have gone the other way.

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    It seemed to go their way. Jamal Crawford could not inbound the ball to as desired, but he was able to find Griffin with a lane to the basket. He made a few dribbles into the lane and pulled Tim Duncan away from the basket, providing the option of putting up a perfectly reasonable runner or attempting an alley-oop to DeAndre Jordan, who was being attended by the much smaller Tony Parker.

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  • Deron Williams comes back to life with 35, Nets even series with Hawks

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 5 days ago

    Brooklyn Nets point guard Deron Williams came into Game 4 of his team's first-round series with the Atlanta Hawks as one of the great disappoinments of the 2015 postseason. Once considered one of the three best point guards in the NBA, Willliams scuffled to two points (and and several game-deciding mistakes) in a Game 2 loss and just three points (plus a benching over the game-deciding final 16 minutes) in Brooklyn's otherwise impressive Game 3 victory. Monday's contest at the Barclays Center loomed as not just a chance for the Nets to even the series at 2-2, but a pivotal game in the three-time All-Star and max-contract player's career.

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  • Mike Conley leaves with apparent face injury as Grizzlies take 3-0 lead

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 7 days ago

    The Memphis Grizzlies achieved a great deal on Saturday night with a 115-109 win at the Portland Trail Blazers, opening up a 3-0 lead in their first-round NBA playoff series with a chance to complete the sweep on Tuesday. But it might have come at a cost.

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    Already nursing a limiting foot injury, star point guard Mike Conley left Game 3 with 4:03 remaining in the third quarter, shortly after taking an inadvertent elbow to the head from Blazers guard C.J. McCollum. You can take a look at the play here:

    Conley went back to the locker room for attention and tests before being taken to a local medical center for further evaluation. ESPN cameras caught Conley holding a bloody towel to his face after his removal from the game:

    Mike Conley Jr. went into the locker room after taking an unintentional shot to the face. pic.twitter.com/92UuhTgCGZ

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  • Stephen Curry puts up 39 to lead Warriors sweep of Pelicans

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 7 days ago

    The best team of the NBA's regular season has moved on to the next round. After a thrilling and improbable comeback victory over the New Orleans Pelicans in Game 3 on Thursday, the Golden State Warriors opened Saturday's Game 4 with arguably their finest stretch of the postseason. A sizable halftime lead turned into a blowout before the Pelicans made a slight fourth-quarter comeback in the hope of keeping their season alive, but the Warriors made enough plays late to finish off the sweep with a 109-98 win.

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    Eric Freeman is a writer for Ball Don't Lie on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at efreeman_ysports@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!