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Press Pass | Dimes of NBA Week 1

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Call me old fashioned, but I like a good assist as much as a good bucket. Press Pass is a weekly column on dishes from around The Association. Here’s this week’s top three.

Honorable Mention: Manu Being Manu.

Forever in the shadow of Timmy, not enough has been said about the poetic brilliance of the Argentinian. Manu has the rare vision, creativity, and courage to throw a ball where he wants his teammate to go, rather than where the man currently is.

On this play, Ginobili casually gets an inbounds pass, and with the flick of the wrist lobs a 60-foot pass over four opponents to a streaking Patty Mills. The shot was missed, but the continuity of the Spurs’ second unit remains intact. I love the chaotic alchemy of this:

 

#3 – D’Angelo Hustle

The sophomore has put down the surveillance equipment, and has shown flashes early without Kobe around. Russell was 0–7 from field in this game before making this Nash-ian pass behind his opponent’s back. Showtime! may indeed still be alive:

 

#2 – Lance Can Still Dance

Lest we forget that 2.5 years ago Lance was second in the NBA in triple-doubles. It speaks volumes to how Larry Bird and Frank Vogel were able to channel that volcano. Today Stephenson stands as a cautionary tale, but sparks are still there. I mean, this guy is the leading scorer in New York State High School basketball history. It’s weird seeing him in New Orleans, his fourth squad in four years. But damn, this pass is delicious:

 

#1 – He’s The King

LeBron at age 31 is taking his passing game to the next stratosphere. I envision him evolving into a thirty-something Magic Johnson low post nightmare. And it’s slowly coming to fruition. On this play, Tristan Thompson sets a pick on Mike Dunleavy and LeBron lasers a bounce pass to the corner. It’s a set play by the Cavs and it required equal measures of timing, instinct, and faith in your teammate. The Spurs used this same set last year with Boris Diaw and Patty Mills flaring to the corner. It’s beautiful. And it’s my dime of the week:

 


If you have any passes we missed or nominees for next week, use the hashtag #PressPass on Twitter and Instagram!

Marc is a Montreal-based writer and filmmaker. His work has appeared on NBA.com, Sole Shift Magazine, and Sportsnet. Marc is co-founder of Hoops Lounge, the oldest weekly basketball show in Canada. He was the only Canadian media covering the FIBA World Cup in Spain. Marc enjoys travel, indie films, Pistol Pete montages, and always believing in Kawhi Leonard.

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Below the Hardwood

Kyrie The Crusader

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Below The Hardwood
Kyrie The Crusader
Below The Hardwood Kyrie The Crusader

In episode 2, the team gives their thoughts on the crusade led by Kyrie Irving to keep the 19-20 NBA season cancelled amidst the social injustice and Covid-19.  As the league prepares for the return of the season, the crew ponders whether Kyrie and others have a good argument on why continuing the season could be a distraction to bigger issues and if the league does return which teams, players are you looking forward to watching in the new 8 game format.

Don’t forget to follow the team on Instagram and most social media platforms

  • @belowthehardwood
  • @RAHenry
  • @alanshane
  • @livingmydexlife 

Podcast available on Spotify, Apple, Google, and iHeartRadio.

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Below the Hardwood

The COVID Special

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The Break
USA vs Everybody | Episode 17
The Break USA vs Everybody | Episode 17

For the first time in over 4 years BTH is back to talk the best in the NBA as they always do….

Social distancing style!

In this episode the team, the homies and  the compadres give their takes on “The Last Dance” MJ Doc; who’s really behind it?, the 2020 NBA season; will it return and which players need it bad, who is the season MVP, would be playoff match ups for east and west conference finals and who would have ultimately won the NBA Finals had it not been for the pandemic of Covid-19.

Don’t forget to follow the team on Instagram and most social media platforms

  • @belowthehardwood
  • @RAHenry
  • @alanshane
  • @livingmydexlife

Podcast available on Spotify, Apple, Google, and iHeartRadio.

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Featured Article

Ride The Wave

Back in October the sky was the limit. LeBron had decided to move to LA and join the Lakers. Things were good then.

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Back in October the sky was the limit. LeBron had decided to move to LA and join the Lakers, drawing in a decent support team and a lot of talk that the West was looking incredibly dominant next to a “weaker” East. Things were good then.

Five months later and things couldn’t be farther from that idylistic picture. The East thrived without the King and GMs put together some of the most noteworthy teams in a while. And the Lakers? The Lakers currently sit in the 11th spot of the Western Conference with very little hope of making it to the playoffs. They’re a team that is constantly attacked for their lack of chemistry, skill, and effort. For the first time in a long time, LA became synonymous with “hopeless”.

This wasn’t the future we saw for the King.

On the heels of a night filled with one of his greatest achievements ever, the Lakers as a team walked away with a loss to the Denver Nuggets. A night that began on a high note went out on one that was equivalent to sour candy. Furthermore, a frustrated team left an arena, hopped on social media, and found a bevy of congrats for their star player, while enduring the storm that came with another Lakers loss.

It seems that James’ stardom has reached a tipping point, one that makes him a GM one moment, the King of the league the next, and finally the biggest point of contention within the locker room. The most notable thing is that it is clearly wearing him down. Chris Martin let us know that “nobody one said it was easy”, but you’ve got to ask yourself, does it have to be so hard?

The answer is unfortunately, yes. It’s always going to be this way, and there is no fighting the current, but there is beauty in riding the wave. Embracing that moment when the wave comes crashing down on you is important, because it’s always going to happen, but your attitude will always be remembered. LeBron rides high, and keeps things in the positive light for the media, but he’s got to realize that they are writing his story, and he doesn’t have to play into their’s. Ride the wave, and take the loss in stride with all the great that has come with it, but take the loss because your part of a team that is.

The wave has crashed down, but the current will bring another.

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