Eric Freeman

  • LeBron James plans to get more aggressive in Cavs-Bulls Game 2

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 1 hr ago

    The Chicago Bulls' Eastern Conference Semifinals Game 1 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers was both notably impressive and not especially shocking. With the injured Kevin Love and suspended J.R. Smith out of the starting lineup, the Cavs were forced to play without two key players in a system that has increasingly relied on offensive balance and outside shooters to space the floor. Tom Thibodeau rightfully noted that no team with LeBron James and Kyrie Irving can be said to be shorthanded, but Cleveland didn't look entirely prepared to make adjustments to their attack.

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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!

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  • Grizzlies control Game 2 from start to finish, even series with Warriors

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 2 hrs ago

    The Memphis Grizzlies looked markedly inferior to the Golden State Warriors without Mike Conley in Game 1 of the Western Conference Semifinals. Based on the results of Tuesday night's Game 2 at Oracle Arena, their star point guard's return appears to have changed the dynamics of the series.

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    Conley indicated that he was in excellent form by making his first four shots for nine points before heading to the bench at the 5:52 mark of the first quarter. He looked every bit the player we have come to expect, knocking down a three-pointer and a trio of mid-range jumpers within the flow of the Memphis offense. Conley showed no discomfort with the mask or his ongoing right foot ailment. The early exit suggested that his minutes would be limited — he ended up playing 27 — but it was clear that he could make the impact necessary to put the Grizzlies in line for the series-tying win.

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  • John Wall out for Wizards-Hawks Game 2 with wrist injury

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 8 hrs ago

    The Washington Wizards grabbed a major advantage in the Eastern Conference Semifinals with a startling road win over the No. 1 seed Atlanta Hawks in Sunday's Game 1. If they want to take a commanding 2-0 lead before heading home, they'll have to do it at a serious disadvantage.

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    All-Star point guard John Wall has been ruled out for Tuesday's Game 2 at Philips Arena. Chris Miller of CSNWashington.com tweeted the news less than an hour before tipoff (via PBT):

    Breaking: John Wall is OUT tonight vs. @ATLHawks (left wrist) #WizardsTalk #WizHawks #dcRising

  • Clippers excel without CP3, steal Game 1 from disappointing Rockets

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 1 day ago

    Few people, if anyone, gave the Los Angeles Clippers much of a chance to beat the Houston Rockets in Game 1 of the Western Conference Semifinals without superstar Chris Paul, ruled out due to the hamstring injury he suffered in their tremendous Game 7 win against the San Antonio Spurs.

    Whoops.

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    It was very impressive, especially considering the short turnaround from a brutal Game 7 in which the Clippers appeared to have exhausted every last ounce of energy. If the Clippers proved their mettle and resilience against the Spurs, then Game 1 vs. the Rockets was just further confirmation. They played with an energy that Houston could not match despite a four-day difference in rest.

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  • Warriors' Stephen Curry named 2014-15 NBA MVP

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 1 day ago

    Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry was officially announced as the 2014-15 NBA Most Valuable Player on Monday morning. The news was first broken on Sunday night by Monte Poole of CSNBayArea.com and later confirmed by Yahoo Sports' Marc Spears.

    Curry received 1,198 total points in the voting and received 100 first-place votes out of 130 ballots. Houston's James Harden (936 points, 25 first-place votes), Cleveland's LeBron James (552 points, five first-place), Oklahoma City's Russell Westrbrook (352 points) and New Orleans' Anthony Davis (203) rounded out the top five.

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    Wilt Chamberlain is the only player in Warriors history to win MVP, but he did so in 1959-60 when the franchise was located in Philadelphia.

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  • Warriors handle Grizzlies with ease, win Game 1 in a rout

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 2 days ago

    The majority of pre-series analysis said that the Memphis Grizzlies would have a very difficult time beating the Golden State Warriors without star point guard Mike Conley. Sunday's Game 1 of their Western Conference Semifinals matchup did little to disabuse anyone of that notion.

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    The problem for the hosts was that Memphis shot nearly as well. While Randolph was not guarded by the smaller Green at the other end, he quickly established himself as the Grizzlies' best offensive option on the day via post-ups and mid-range jumpers. If not for six turnovers, the Grizzlies could have matched the Warriors. Instead, they settled for 11-of-21 shooting (with eight assists) and a seven-point deficit.

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

    Eric Freeman at Ball Don't Lie 4 days 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 4 days 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 5 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 5 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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