The minds behind Ball Don’t Lie are going to preview each of the parings in the third round, with Kelly Dwyer going against character for a more genial take, Dan Devine bringing his inimitable mixture of both order and bedlam, along with Eric Freeman’s legendary look inside the reputations of some of the series’ key fixtures. We begin with the San Antonio Spurs and Memphis Grizzlies. Which team do you think will win the series, and in how many games? Vote here to let us know what you think.
A look around the league and the web that covers it. It's also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren't always listed in order of importance. That's for you, dear reader, to figure out. [Related: Mavs' Dirk Nowitzki offers to take 'significant pay cut' to woo free agents ] C : YouTube.com/NBA . Dirk Nowitzki hasn’t played a game of basketball in a month, but that doesn’t mean he can’t get all of our hearts a-flutterin’ as we look forward to this year’s NBA Finals. PF : Pro Hoops History . Curtis Harris delves into the career of George McGinnis, who put up some ridiculous statistics in both the ABA and NBA. SF : Daily Thunder . Thunder super-scribe Royce White discusses the various options Oklahoma City has with disappointing big man Kendrick Perkins. SG : SB Nation . It wasn’t because of a terrible mismatch, and it wasn’t because he was playing poorly, but Tim Duncan sat out the crucial stages of his team’s series-deciding win on Thursday night. Mike Prada tries to discovery why that was, exactly. PG : Sports Illustrated . Rob Mahoney also breaks down parts of the same stretch with a focus on Kawhi Leonard, who has been playing brilliant (and somewhat frighteningly-good) ball with Duncan off of the floor.
If you wanted to say that the Indiana Pacers lost Thursday's Game 5 more than the New York Knicks won it, I wouldn't fight you in a public square. While the Knicks did seem more willing to attack and press the action in taking a 10-point decision, the Pacers frequently seemed unable to get out of their own way, coughing the ball up time and again, failing to take advantage of their trips to the foul line and allowing a Knicks team that still couldn't shoot straight (just 41 percent from the floor in the win) to capitalize on their sloppy play. Roy Hibbert knew he and his teammates had let a golden opportunity to finish things off and advance to the Eastern Conference finals slip through their fingers. After the game, the 7-foot-2 center — no doubt frustrated by his own pedestrian nine-point, seven-rebound performance in 31 foul-filled minutes — called the Pacers on the carpet and questioned their masculinity, according to Fred Kerber of the New York Post : “Excuse all the women in here, but we played like p---ies tonight, to tell you the truth,” foul-plagued center Roy Hibbert said. “We didn’t deserve to win this one. I’ll probably get fined for that. I don’t care.” If you're not sure which letters belong in place of those dashes, Kerber helpfully spelled the NSFW language out on Twitter . Be aware, though: It's the kind of blue talk that'll shock the monocle right out of your eye.
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