Listen to Go4it! Guest: Ex-NBA player Jonathan Bender

We will be talking sports and having fun doing it. We will be joined by former NBA player Jonathan Bender, who will give his thoughts on the NBA playoffs, LeBron vs. Jordan, “Malice at the Palace,”  and life after basketball.

Show starts tonight at 7pmest

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Why the Raptors need to get to the NBA Finals this year

Over the past few seasons, the Toronto Raptors have had a lot of success. Since 2015, they have put together three straight seasons of 50 plus wins or more, an Eastern Conference Finals appearance in 2016, and a franchise-best 59 wins this season, which was the best record in the Eastern Conference.

With all that success, the Raptors have to break through and get to the NBA Finals. And the way things look in the Eastern Conference, this season, 2018 seems like the right time to do it.

The two teams that were expected to battle it out for Eastern Conference supremacy are not the same. Cleveland has the one man Toronto has no answer for and that’s LeBron James, but this year’s Cavs team is very beatable. While the Celtics, who are the second-seed in the Eastern Conference, had all the makings of a team that could get to the Finals before Kyrie Irving was ruled out for the playoffs with a knee injury.

However, here’s the real reason why the Raptors need to get to the Finals this year. The Philadelphia 76ers are coming. They have a young nucleus in Joel Embiid, 24, Ben Simmons, 21, Dario Saric, 24, and Markelle Fultz, 19. Philly won 52 games this season, and are ahead of schedule. Plus, according to Spotrac.com, they will have close to $30 million in cap space and a potential lottery pick(If Lakers pick is 1, or below pick 5) this summer, which could make them appealing to a certain King in Cleveland.  Based on the way they are playing right now, Philly is going to be a tough out in these playoffs.

Also, the Boston Celtics are going to be another team that will be tough to beat moving forward. They have Irving and Gordon Hayward coming back next season. Plus, they have young studs in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, and they have the possibility of getting a top-five pick(Lakers pick via trade if it is 2-5) in the 2018 NBA Draft.

The Celtics and the 76ers look like they will be fixtures at the top of the Eastern Conference for years to come. We might have a 1980’s remix when the 76ers and Celtics battled it out during that decade.

With Cleveland struggling, and Boston depleted due to injuries. The time is now for Toronto. Plus, their two best players DeMar DeRozan, 28, and Kyle Lowry, 32, are not getting any younger. So,  If Toronto does not get to the NBA Finals this year, they may not ever get there for years to come.

 

Kellerman: ‘Steph right now is a bigger loss than the Spurs not having Kawhi'(WATCH)

Coming into the 2018 NBA playoffs, both the Golden State Warriors and the San Antonio Spurs are depleted.

The Warriors’ Steph Curry is expected to miss the first-round after injuring his left knee, while the Spurs’ Kawhi Leonard has played in only nine games this season due to a right quad injury. No word if Leonard will be available at any point in these playoffs.

The Warriors, who are the 2nd seed in the Western Conference, will face the 7th seeded San Antonio Spurs in the first-round of the playoffs. Game 1 will be on Saturday at Oracle Arena.

Obviously, the Warriors still have Kevin Durant, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson, which will make it very difficutl for the Spurs to win this series.

Which loss is greater Curry or Leonard?

ESPN’s Max Kellerman gave his thoughts on ESPN’s First Take today:

The answer is pretty obvious. Kawhi Leonard is the Spurs best player, so it’s going to be very difficult for San Antonio to win without him.  Regarding the Warriors, you can argue that their best player will still be on the court in Durant. Therefore, they could make a long run in the playoffs without Curry.

 

Listen to Go4it! Guest: NBA Playoff talk w/ Rider Univ Asst Basketball coach Marlon Guild

We will be talking sports and having fun doing it. Expected to be joined by Rider University assistant basketball coach Marlon Guild who will give his take on the upcoming NBA playoffs.  Can the Warriors repeat? Who is coming out of the East? Can Philly get to the NBA Finals? Will LeBron get an 8th straight NBA Finals? Is it the year of the Raptors? Will Houston supplant GSW in the West?

All that and more!

Call 646-727-3070 to join the fun!

LaMarcus Aldridge on the move?

Could the LaMarcus Aldridge era in San Antonio be over? Aldridge, who signed a 4-year, 84 million dollar deal with the Spurs in 2015, could be had for a top 10 pick, according Sam Amico.  

Aldridge did have some struggles last season in San Antonio. He reportedly was upset with his role.

According to Amico, the Sacramento Kings could be the destination for Aldridge. The Kings have picks 5 and 10.

This should be fun!

Jerry West denies talking to the Clippers

The great Jerry West was not only a great player, but a great NBA executive too! As an executive, West helped build the “Showtime” Lakers, and helped put together the championship Lakers of the early 2000s. West would eventually go to the Memphis Grizzlies, and currently is an executive board member of the Golden State Warriors. Now, there are rumors that West could be on his way to the Clippers.

However, West denied that he has talked to the Clippers. When asked about going to the Clippers, West told TMZ Sports, with a smile “I don’t know what you’re talking about.” 

Maybe West is telling the truth; maybe he is not. In the end, Jerry West can help the Clippers or any team for that matter. West contract with the Warriors ends in July.

Doc Rivers believes Chris Paul will stay with Clippers

There has been a lot of talk about the future of Chris Paul with the Clippers. The San Antonio Spurs reportedly might pursue Paul, who is expected to opt out of his contract and become an unrestricted free agent this summer.  However, Clippers president/coach Doc Rivers believes that Paul will stay in Los Angeles. When asked by TMZ Sports if Paul is going to stay with the Clippers, Rivers said “absolutely.”

It might be a tall order for the Spurs to sign Paul anyway. According to ESPN, the Spurs would possibly have to do the following:

Spurs would have to renounce the rights to looming free agents Manu Ginobili, Patty Mills, and Jonathan Simmons as well as potential free agents Dwayne Dedmon and David Lee. 

They may have to make other moves as well to make it work.

Plus, the Clippers could offer Paul more money (53 million more).   End of the day, the Spurs are cap-strapped; therefore, I don’t see it happening.

However, if there is a will, there is a way!

LeBron on his hair: ‘I didn’t go bald, but I’m getting there’

LeBron James is back in the NBA Finals after the Cavaliers defeated the Celtics in Game five of the Eastern Conference Finals to win the series 4-1 on Thursday night.  King James did something else that was special yesterday in Boston. James surpassed Michael Jordan and became the all-time leading scorer in NBA Playoffs history. After the game, LeBron talked about how he emulated Michael Jordan growing up, and how he might emulate Jordan’s hair in the future:

“I did pretty much everything MJ did. I shot fadeaways, I wore a leg sleeve, I didn’t go bald, but I’m getting there.”

He might be there, in terms of the hair, sooner than later!

Take a listen:

Brian Scalabrine on Celtics chances of beating Cavs in ECF: ‘There’s not one sliver of hope’

The Boston Celtics did the impossible on Sunday night. Down by as much as 21 points, Boston was able to come back and stun the Cavaliers 111-108 to take game 3, and cut the series lead to 2-1.

Can the Celtics beat the Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals without Isaiah Thomas? Former Celtic and current Celtics analyst Brian Scalabrine gave his opinion about Boston chances. Scalabrine told TMZ Sports that it would take a “zombie apocalypse” and LeBron James getting bit in the neck for Boston to beat the Cavaliers in this series.

“I’m as optimistic as they come. I love the Celtics! I gas them up all the time. I cover for them when they’re bad. There’s not one sliver of hope that they can actually pull this series off, and then when Isaiah goes down, I really did not see it happening, but the only sliver of hope is I been wrong every game, so hopefully I continue to be wrong,” Scalabrine told TMZ Sports.

Well, anything is possible, so we will see what happens in game 4 on Tuesday.