Included in all the player movement of this past summer was the last two Finals MVPs leaving the two teams that met in the 2019 Finals. And with more balance in the distribution of superstars, the race for the 2020 NBA championship appears to be wide open. There are favorites, of course. But with so many good players in new uniforms, we don’t know how all the pieces are going to fit.
We still asked the league’s decision-makers to take their best guesses. And in the 18th annual NBA.com GM Survey, 46 percent of general managers have picked Paul George and Kawhi Leonard to lead the LA Clippers to their first NBA title. Leonard was not only named the offseason acquisition that would make the biggest impact, but is also the first player not named LeBron James to be named the league’s best small forward since 2005.
The GMs responded to 50 different questions about the best teams, players, coaches, fans, and offseason moves. General managers were not permitted to vote for their own team or personnel. Percentages are based on the pool of respondents to that particular question, rather than all 30 GMs.
The National Basketball Association (NBA) is a men’s professional basketball league in North America, composed of 30 teams (29 in the United States and 1 in Canada). It is one of the four major professional sports leagues in the United States and Canada, and is widely considered to be the premier men’s professional basketball league in the world.
Japanese-American Wataru Misaka broke the NBA color barrier in the 1947–48 season when he played for the New York Knicks. He remained the only non-white player in league history prior to the first African-American, Harold Hunter, signing with the Washington Capitols in 1950. Hunter was cut from the team during training camp, but several African-American players did play in the league later that year, including Chuck Cooper with the Celtics, Nathaniel “Sweetwater” Clifton with the Knicks, and Earl Lloyd with the Washington Capitols. During this period, the Minneapolis Lakers, led by center George Mikan, won five NBA Championships and established themselves as the league’s first dynasty. To encourage shooting and discourage stalling, the league introduced the 24-second shot clock in 1954. If a team does not attempt to score a field goal (or the ball fails to make contact with the rim) within 24 seconds of obtaining the ball, play is stopped and the ball given to its opponent.
In 1957, rookie center Bill Russell joined the Boston Celtics, which already featured guard Bob Cousy and coach Red Auerbach, and went on to lead the club to eleven NBA titles in thirteen seasons. Center Wilt Chamberlain entered the league with the Warriors in 1959 and became a dominant individual star of the 1960s, setting new single game records in scoring and rebounding . Russell’s rivalry with Chamberlain became one of the greatest rivalries in the history of American team sports.
The 1960s were dominated by the Celtics. Led by Russell, Bob Cousy and coach Red Auerbach, Boston won eight straight championships in the NBA from 1959 to 1966. This championship streak is the longest in NBA history. They did not win the title in 1966–67, but regained it in the 1967–68 season and repeated in 1969. The domination totaled nine of the ten championship banners of the 1960s..
In 1969, Alan Siegel, who oversaw the design of Jerry Dior’s Major League Baseball logo a year prior, created the modern NBA logo inspired by the MLB’s. It incorporates the silhouette of the legendary Jerry West based on a photo by Wen Roberts, although NBA officials denied a particular player as being its influence because, according to Siegel, “They want to institutionalize it rather than individualize it. It’s become such a ubiquitous, classic symbol and focal point of their identity and their licensing program that they don’t necessarily want to identify it with one player.” The iconic logo debuted in 1971 (with a small change to the typeface on the NBA wordmark in 2017) and would remain a fixture of the NBA brand..
In 1998, the NBA owners began a lockout that suspended all league business until a new labor agreement could be reached. By the time the lockout was settled later that year, half the season was lost. In 1999, the San Antonio Spurs became the first former ABA team to win the NBA championship. It was the team’s first championship win..
The league’s image was marred by a violent incident between players and fans in a November 2004 game between the Indiana Pacers and Detroit Pistons. In response, players were suspended for a total of 146 games with $11 million total lost in salary, and the league tightened security and limited the sale of alcohol.
On July 1, 2011, at 12:01 am, the NBA announced another lockout. After the first few weeks of the season were canceled, the players and owners ratified a new collective bargaining agreement on December 8, 2011, setting up a shortened 66-game season. Following the shortened season, the Miami Heat made a return to the Finals with the trio of Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh against Oklahoma City Thunder’s Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, and James Harden. The Heat went on to defeat the Thunder in five games, capturing their second NBA title in six years. Their success would continue into the following season, which concluded with their victory over the San Antonio Spurs in the 2013 NBA Finals. The two teams would meet for a rematch in the following year’s Finals, where the Spurs defeated the Heat in five games. Off the court, commissioner David Stern retired on February 1, 2014, exactly 30 years to the day from taking office. He was succeeded by his deputy, Adam Silver.
Following the 2014 Finals, LeBron James announced that he would return to the Cleveland Cavaliers. James led the Cavaliers to their second Finals appearance, where they lost to the Golden State Warriors in six games. The following year, in a rematch, the 2016 NBA Finals concluded with the Cavaliers defeating the Warriors in seven games to win their first NBA Championship. The dominance of those two teams continued in 2017, when the Warriors, having signed Kevin Durant as a free agent, took the third straight Finals matchup between the two teams in five games, with Durant named Finals MVP, and again in 2018 when they went to a fourth straight Finals matchup.
During free agency in 2018, LeBron James signed with the Lakers. In the following season, the Warriors returned to the Finals for the fifth straight year, where they were defeated by the Toronto Raptors in six games.
Following pioneers like Vlade Divac (Serbia) and Dražen Petrović (Croatia) who joined the NBA in the late 1980s, an increasing number of international players have moved directly from playing elsewhere in the world to starring in the NBA. Since 2006, the NBA has faced EuroLeague teams in exhibition matches in the NBA Europe Live Tour, and since 2009, in the EuroLeague American Tour. The 2013–14 season opened with a record 92 international players on the opening night rosters, representing 39 countries and comprising over 20% of the league. The beginning of the 2017-18 season saw a record 108 international players representing 42 different countries marking 4 consecutive years of at least 100 international players and each team having at least one international player. In 2018, the Phoenix Suns hired Serbian coach Igor Kokoškov as their new head coach, replacing Canadian interim coach Jay Triano, making Kokoškov the first European coach to become a head coach for a team in the NBA.
A new official game ball was introduced on June 28, 2006, for the 2006–07 season, marking the first change to the ball in over 35 years and only the second ball in 60 seasons. Manufactured by Spalding, the new ball featured a new design and new synthetic material that Spalding claimed offered a better grip, feel, and consistency than the original ball. However, many players were vocal in their disdain for the new ball, saying that it was too sticky when dry, and too slippery when wet.
Commissioner Stern announced on December 11, 2006, that beginning January 1, 2007, the NBA would return to the traditional leather basketball in use prior to the 2006–07 season. The change was influenced by frequent player complaints and confirmed hand injuries (cuts) caused by the microfiber ball. The Players’ Association had filed a suit on behalf of the players against the NBA over the new ball. As of the 2017–18 season, the NBA team jerseys are manufactured by Nike, replacing the previous supplier, Adidas. All teams will wear jerseys with the Nike logo except the Charlotte Hornets, whose jerseys will instead have the Jumpman logo associated with longtime Nike endorser Michael Jordan, who owns the Hornets..
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) began an investigation on July 19, 2007, over allegations that veteran NBA referee Tim Donaghy bet on basketball games he officiated over the past two seasons and that he made calls affecting the point spread in those games. On August 15, 2007, Donaghy pleaded guilty to two federal charges related to the investigation. Donaghy claimed in 2008 that certain referees were friendly with players and “company men” for the NBA, and he alleged that referees influenced the outcome of certain playoff and finals games in 2002 and 2005. NBA commissioner David Stern denied the allegations and said Donaghy was a convicted felon and a “singing, cooperating witness”. Donaghy served 15 months in prison and was released in November 2009. According to an independent study by Ronald Beech of Game 6 of the 2002 Western Conference Finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and Sacramento Kings, although the refs increased the Lakers’ chances of winning through foul calls during the game, there was no collusion to fix the game. On alleged “star treatment” during Game 6 by the refs toward certain players, Beech claimed, “there does seem to be issues with different standards and allowances for different players.” .
The NBA Board of Governors approved the request of the Seattle SuperSonics to relocate to Oklahoma City on April 18, 2008. The team, however, could not move until it had settled a lawsuit filed by the city of Seattle, which was intended to keep the SuperSonics in Seattle for the remaining two seasons of the team’s lease at KeyArena. Following a court case, the city of Seattle settled with the ownership group of the SuperSonics on July 2, 2008, allowing the team to move to Oklahoma City immediately in exchange for terminating the final two seasons of the team’s lease at KeyArena. The Oklahoma City Thunder began playing in the 2008–09 season.
The 2011–12 NBA season, scheduled to begin November 1, 2011, with a matchup between the defending champion Dallas Mavericks and the Chicago Bulls, was postponed due to a labor dispute. The lockout officially ended on December 8, 2011, when players and owners ratified a new collective bargaining agreement, and the season began on Christmas Day.
After the 2012–13 season, the New Orleans Hornets were renamed the Pelicans. During the 2013–14 season, Stern retired as commissioner after 30 years, and deputy commissioner Adam Silver ascended to the position of commissioner. During that season’s playoffs, the Bobcats officially reclaimed the Hornets name, and by agreement with the league and the Pelicans, also received sole ownership of all history, records, and statistics from the Pelicans’ time in Charlotte. As a result, the Hornets are now officially considered to have been founded in 1988, suspended operations in 2002, and resumed in 2004 as the Bobcats, while the Pelicans are officially treated as a 2002 expansion team. (This is somewhat similar to the relationship between the Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens in the NFL.).
Becky Hammon was hired by the San Antonio Spurs on August 5, 2014, as an assistant coach, becoming the second female coach in NBA history but the first full-time coach. This also makes her the first full-time female coach in any of the four major professional sports in North America..
The NBA announced on April 15, 2016, that it would allow all 30 of its teams to sell corporate sponsor advertisement patches on official game uniforms, beginning with the 2017–18 season. The sponsorship advertisement patches would appear on the left front of jerseys, opposite Nike’s logo, marking the first time a manufacturer’s logo would appear on NBA jerseys, and would measure approximately 2.5 by 2.5 inches. The NBA would become the first major North American professional sports league to allow corporate sponsorship logos on official team uniforms, and the last to have a uniform manufacturer logo appear on its team uniforms. The first team to announce a jersey sponsorship was the Philadelphia 76ers, who agreed to a deal with StubHub..
On July 6, 2017, the NBA unveiled an updated rendition of its logo; it is largely identical to the previous design, except with revised typography and a “richer” color scheme. The league began to phase in the updated logo across its properties during the 2017 NBA Summer League, but it will not immediately be used on equipment or uniforms due to lead time..
The NBA also officially released new Nike uniforms for all 30 teams beginning with the 2017–18 season. The league eliminated “home” and “away” uniform designations. Instead, each team would have four or six uniforms: the “Association” edition, which is the team’s white uniform, the “Icon” edition, which is the team’s color uniform, and two other uniform editions, to be unveiled at a later date..
The NBA originated in 1946 with 11 teams, and through a sequence of team expansions, reductions, and relocations, currently consists of 30 teams. The United States is home to 29 teams and one is located in Canada.
The current league organization divides thirty teams into two conferences of three divisions with five teams each. The current divisional alignment was introduced in the 2004–05 season. Reflecting the population distribution of the United States and Canada as a whole, most teams are in the eastern half of the country: thirteen teams are in the Eastern Time Zone, nine in the Central, three in the Mountain, and five in the Pacific.
Following the summer break, teams begin training camps in late September. Training camps allow the coaching staff to evaluate players (especially rookies), scout the team’s strengths and weaknesses, prepare the players for the rigorous regular season, and determine the 12-man active roster (and a 3-man inactive list) with which they will begin the regular season. Teams have the ability to assign players with less than two years of experience to the NBA G League. After training camp, a series of preseason exhibition games are held. Preseason matches are sometimes held in non-NBA cities, both in the United States and overseas. The NBA regular season begins in the last week of October.
During the regular season, each team plays 82 games, 41 each home and away. A team faces opponents in its own division four times a year (16 games). Each team plays six of the teams from the other two divisions in its conference four times (24 games), and the remaining four teams three times (12 games). Finally, each team plays all the teams in the other conference twice apiece (30 games). This asymmetrical structure means the strength of schedule will vary between teams (but not as significantly as the NFL or MLB). Over five seasons, each team will have played 80 games against their division (20 games against each opponent, 10 at home, 10 on the road), 180 games against the rest of their conference (18 games against each opponent, 9 at home, 9 on the road), and 150 games against the other conference (10 games against each team, 5 at home, 5 on the road).
The NBA is also the only league that regularly schedules games on Christmas Day. The league has been playing games regularly on the holiday since 1947, though the first Christmas Day games were not televised until 1983–84. Games played on this day have featured some of the best teams and players. Christmas is also notable for NBA on television, as the holiday is when the first NBA games air on network television each season. Games played on this day have been some of the highest-rated games during a particular season.
In February, the regular season pauses to celebrate the annual NBA All-Star Game. Fans vote throughout the United States, Canada, and on the Internet, and the top vote-getters in each conference are named captains. Fan votes determine the rest of the allstar starters. Coaches vote to choose the remaining 14 All-Stars. Then, the top vote-getters in each conference draft their own team from a player pool of allstars. The top vote-getter in the league earns first pick and so forth. The player with the best performance during the game is rewarded with a Game MVP award. Other attractions of the All-Star break include the Rising Stars Challenge (originally Rookie Challenge), where the top rookies and second-year players in the NBA play in a 5-on-5 basketball game, with the current format pitting U.S. players against those from the rest of the world; the Skills Challenge, where players compete to finish an obstacle course consisting of shooting, passing, and dribbling in the fastest time; the Three Point Contest, where players compete to score the highest number of three-point field goals in a given time; and the NBA Slam Dunk Contest, where players compete to dunk the ball in the most entertaining way according to the judges. These other attractions have varying names which include the names of the various sponsors who have paid for naming rights.
Shortly after the All-Star break is the trade deadline, which is set to fall on the 16th Thursday of the season (usually in February) at 3pm Eastern Time. After this date, teams are not allowed to exchange players with each other for the remainder of the season, although they may still sign and release players. Major trades are often completed right before the trading deadline, making that day a hectic time for general managers.
Around the middle of April, the regular season ends. It is during this time that voting begins for individual awards, as well as the selection of the honorary, league-wide, post-season teams. The Sixth Man of the Year Award is given to the best player coming off the bench (must have more games coming off the bench than actual games started). The Rookie of the Year Award is awarded to the most outstanding first-year player. The Most Improved Player Award is awarded to the player who is deemed to have shown the most improvement from the previous season. The Defensive Player of the Year Award is awarded to the league’s best defender. The Coach of the Year Award is awarded to the coach that has made the most positive difference to a team. The Most Valuable Player Award is given to the player deemed the most valuable for (his team) that season. Additionally, Sporting News awards an unofficial (but widely recognized) Executive of the Year Award to the general manager who is adjudged to have performed the best job for the benefit of his franchise.
The post-season teams are the All-NBA Team, the All-Defensive Team, and the All-Rookie Team; each consists of five players. There are three All-NBA teams, consisting of the top players at each position, with first-team status being the most desirable. There are two All-Defensive teams, consisting of the top defenders at each position. There are also two All-Rookie teams, consisting of the top first-year players regardless of position..
The NBA playoffs begin in April after the conclusion of the regular season with the top eight teams in each conference, regardless of divisional alignment, competing for the league’s championship title, the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy. Seeds are awarded in strict order of regular season record (with a tiebreaker system used as needed).
Having a higher seed offers several advantages. Since the first seed begins the playoffs playing against the eighth seed, the second seed plays the seventh seed, the third seed plays the sixth seed, and the fourth seed plays the fifth seed, having a higher seed means a team faces a weaker team in the first round. The team in each series with the better record has home court advantage, including the First Round. Before the league changed its playoff determination format for the 2006–07 season, this meant that, for example, if the team that received the sixth seed had a better record than the team with the third seed (by virtue of a divisional championship), the sixth seed would have home court advantage, even though the other team had a higher seed. Therefore, the team with the best regular season record in the league is guaranteed home court advantage in every series it plays. For example, in 2006, the Denver Nuggets won 44 games and captured the Northwest Division and the third seed. Their opponent was the sixth-seeded Los Angeles Clippers, who won 47 games and finished second in the Pacific Division. Although Denver won its much weaker division, the Clippers had home-court advantage and won the series in 5.
The playoffs follow a tournament format. Each team plays an opponent in a best-of-seven series, with the first team to win four games advancing into the next round, while the other team is eliminated from the playoffs. In the next round, the successful team plays against another advancing team of the same conference. All but one team in each conference are eliminated from the playoffs. Since the NBA does not re-seed teams, the playoff bracket in each conference uses a traditional design, with the winner of the series matching the first- and eighth-seeded teams playing the winner of the series matching the fourth- and fifth-seeded teams, and the winner of the series matching the second- and seventh-seeded teams playing the winner of the series matching the third- and sixth-seeded teams. In every round, the best-of-7 series follows a 2–2–1–1–1 home-court pattern, meaning that one team will have home court in games 1, 2, 5, and 7, while the other plays at home in games 3, 4, and 6. From 1985 to 2013, the NBA Finals followed a 2–3–2 pattern, meaning that one team had home court in games 1, 2, 6, and 7, while the other played at home in games 3, 4, and 5..
The league began using its current format, with the top eight teams in each conference advancing regardless of divisional alignment, in the 2015–16 season. Previously, the top three seeds went to the division winners..
As of 2017, the NBA’s popularity further declined among White Americans, who during the 2016–17 season, only made up 34% of the viewership. At the same time, the black viewership increased to 47 percent, while Hispanic (of any race) stood at 11 percent and Asian viewership stood at 8 percent. According to the same poll, the NBA was favored more strongly by Democrats than Republicans..
On some occasions, young players, most but not all from the English-speaking world, have attended U.S. colleges before playing in the NBA.
The 2013–14 season opened with a record 92 international players on the opening night rosters, representing 39 countries and comprising over 20% of the league The NBA defines “international” players as those born outside the 50 United States and Washington, D.C.
Draymond Green had a dream to play basketball at Michigan State. Now, his jersey is in the school’s rafters, and he’s in awe.
The last time the Sacramento Kings won in Portland, Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard was a rookie. The Kings will attempt to halt that dubious 11-game skid when they visit the Trail Blazers on Wednesday. Lillard is now in his eighth season, and the only time he was part of a loss to the Kings in Portland.
Field Level MediaKings look to break 11-game skid in PortlandThe last time the Sacramento Kings won in Portland, Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard was a rookie. The Kings will attempt to halt that dubious 11-game skid when they visit the Trail Blazers on Wednesday. Lillard is now in his eighth season, and the only time he was part of a loss to the Kings in Portland.
The Associated PressHarrell, George lead Clippers past Blazers, 117-97The Clippers are still figuring things out even while they’re piling up wins. Montrezl Harrell scored 26 points, Paul George added 25 and Los Angeles pulled away in the second half to beat the Portland Trail Blazers 117-97 on Tuesday night. “The best thing about this team is we’re not near where we.
The Twitter account combining sketch comedy and basketball drama to make viral memes has a devout, and specific, following. Here’s the story of how it got started.
The Miami Heat ended Toronto’s perfect record at home this season, and played spoiler in Kyle Lowry’s first game after missing 11. Jimmy Butler had 22 points, 13 rebounds and 12 assists Tuesday to lead the Heat to a 121-110 overtime victory, which also halted the Raptors’ seven-game winning streak.
Heat dominate overtime to snap Raptors’ seven-game winning streak The Miami Heat ended Toronto’s perfect record at home this season, and played spoiler in Kyle Lowry’s first game after missing 11. Jimmy Butler had 22 points, 13 rebounds and 12 assists Tuesday to lead the Heat to a 121-110 overtime victory, which also halted the Raptors’ seven-game winning streak.
Many handicappers believe beating the NBA odds is one of the toughest tasks in all of sports betting. And the game’s constant stream of momentum swings and runs makes it vulnerable to backdoor covers. It makes studying basketball matchup reports and trends even more important, along with watching NBA power rankings and NBA consensus betting data. If you see a high percentage of the betting public on one side of a game (or on the OVER or UNDER), it could be a good idea to bet the other way.
They say beating the NBA point spread is one of the toughest tasks in sports betting. Is pro hoops that much harder to handicap or do people just not study NBA basketball odds and line moves enough? Whatever the case, winning your NBA bet comes down to careful study of player and team trends, injury situations, matchups as well as line value. Remember that NBA basketball odds are not the number of points the bookmaker believes one team will win by, rather a number where he feels he’ll get equal betting action on both sides. So check out the OddsShark.com NBA basketball odds to make yourself a sharper handicapper.
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NBA Basketball BettingThey say beating the NBA point spread is one of the toughest tasks in sports betting. Is pro hoops that much harder to handicap or do people just not study NBA basketball odds and line moves enough? Whatever the case, winning your NBA bet comes down to careful study of player and team trends, injury situations, matchups as well as line value. Remember that NBA basketball odds are not the number of points the bookmaker believes one team will win by, rather a number where he feels he’ll get equal betting action on both sides. So check out the OddsShark.com NBA basketball odds to make yourself a sharper handicapper.Moneyline betting is another form of basketball wagering that is gaining popularity and the value can be excellent if you are good at picking underdog winners. The payouts are better in moneyline betting. And future odds – who will win the NBA championship – are always changing and always generating mainstream buzz. An injury to James Harden may send the Rockets’ title odds tumbling, while a key trade or hot streak may send a team’s NBA championship odds from 50/1 to 20/1 in just a few days.And don’t forget about preseason NBA betting opportunities such as odds to win each division, rookie of the year props and more. Some sportsbooks also offer hundreds of daily player props (will Stephen Curry’s points + assists be more than Joel Embiid’s points + rebounds?). .
They say beating the NBA point spread is one of the toughest tasks in sports betting. Is pro hoops that much harder to handicap or do people just not study NBA basketball odds and line moves enough? Whatever the case, winning your NBA bet comes down to careful study of player and team trends, injury situations, matchups as well as line value. Remember that NBA basketball odds are not the number of points the bookmaker believes one team will win by, rather a number where he feels he’ll get equal betting action on both sides. So check out the OddsShark.com NBA basketball odds to make yourself a sharper handicapper.Moneyline betting is another form of basketball wagering that is gaining popularity and the value can be excellent if you are good at picking underdog winners. The payouts are better in moneyline betting. And future odds – who will win the NBA championship – are always changing and always generating mainstream buzz. An injury to James Harden may send the Rockets’ title odds tumbling, while a key trade or hot streak may send a team’s NBA championship odds from 50/1 to 20/1 in just a few days.And don’t forget about preseason NBA betting opportunities such as odds to win each division, rookie of the year props and more. Some sportsbooks also offer hundreds of daily player props (will Stephen Curry’s points + assists be more than Joel Embiid’s points + rebounds?). .
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