Who will win in UFC 85?

Friday, May 23, 2008

NBA Mock Draft 2008

I'm going to join the bandwagon and create my own NBA Mock Draft 2008. The NBA Draft 2008 is going to be held at the Wamu Theater in Madison Square Garden on June 26. Here I will try to predict which players lottery teams will pick in the upcoming draft.

1. Chicago - Derrick Rose - A lot of people are telling me that the Bulls have been longing for the ultimate post guy that will lead them to being a contender. But when you have a point guard who can orchestrate your offense in masterful way, passing up on Beasley wouldn't be so hard. Rose can create wide open shots with his dribble penetration, as there is no player he couldn't beat off the dribble. Rose is an excellent shooter, rebounder and defender.

2. Miami - Michael Beasley - Adding a talented big man into the Miami roster would help take the pressure off Dwyane Wade. With the presence of a big man, the floor can open

up more for Dwyane Wade. Heat fans won't miss Shaq as they will be having a young dominant big man in a Heat jersey soon.

3. Minnesota - Brook Lopez - Lopez isn't in the same league as Rose or Beasley, but if paired with Al Jefferson, he could be a headache for other teams. Lopez has an amazing touch from the outside which can be a weapon if Al Jefferson would be double-teamed a lot. One of Lopez's strengths is his amazing conditioning.

4. Seattle - Jerryd Bayless - Bayless reminds me of Ben Gordon. He isn't that tall for the average shooting guard in the NBA, like Gordon. If Seattle picks him, he might see some time as a point guard, a position he proved he can play at. But his natural position would be shooting guard especially with his high-elevating jump shot.

5. Memphis - O.J. Mayo - I picked O.J. Mayo at this spot mainly because I don't see him not being in the top 5. Rudy Gay is the Grizzlies' main wing man, and Mayo may be in the same position as Gay. But Mayo's one-on-one game is far superior than Gay's. O.J. Mayo may end up being one of the great one-on-one players in the NBA. Whether its taking a shot off the dribble or backing his opponent up, Mayo can definitely score at will. He just has to control all the off-court distractions that are happening to him.

6. New York - Danilo Gallinari - Now that Mike D'Antoni is the head coach, I think Danilo Gallinari fits the New York Knicks. Gallinari is an open-court type of player and can be a weapon used by D'Antoni. For a 6-9 player, he has great ball handling skills. We may see him be used as a point-forward at times.

7. L.A. Clippers - Eric Gordon - Gordon is also like Mayo is terms of creating his own shot. But Eric Gordon is undersized for his position which can be a problem on defense. The Clippers would need a tall point guard (Shaun Livingston) to compensate with the height mismatch on the defensive end.

8. Milwaukee - Anthony Randolph - Randolph is a very skilled and athletic power forward. The only problem is, he is still very raw and young, something I'm not sure the Bucks would want. Randolph needs time to develop in the NBA before he can be a force. One aspect of his game that is amazing is how he creates plays of the dribble.

9. Charlotte - DeAndre Jordan - Like Randolph, Jordan is still very young but has a lot of promise. He reminds me of a not so stable Dwight Howard. When Jordan goes for dunks, he is amazing. But sometimes, he looks like he doesn't have a strong core or lower body. He needs to develop his body in order for him to become a threat in the low post.

10. New Jersey - Marreese Speights - Speights isn't one of those talked about prospects but is one of the more solid power forwards in this draft. The Nets are loaded with wing men and shooters, so drafting Speights could be a great addition.

These are my predictions for the 2008 NBA Draft this coming June. Let's see if my NBA Mock Draft 2008 would be accurate or not.

Niko's Sports Blog

Tuesday, May 20, 2008



Sorry for the all-caps title! this is gonna be a biased blog for my favorite team. The Chicago Bulls won the NBA Draft Lottery and has a chance to get back to the playoffs as early as next year. For me, I think the Bulls should go for Derrick Rose. Michael Beasley might be the best playenba draft lotteryr in the draft, and is almost sure to win Rookie of the Year honors, but with the emergence of the phenomenal point guards and how it affects the team (Chris Paul, Deron Williams), I think the Bulls should go with Rose in this year's NBA Draft.

Derrick Rose carried the Memphis Tigers to the National Title and I think he can do the same with the Bulls, especially with Luol Deng, Ben Gordon, and young prospects Joakim Noah and Tyrus Thomas in the line-up.

I hope this is the year the Bulls will legitimately come back to being a contender. Luck in the Lottery is the first step, but the Bulls would have to work hard to get back into shape.

The 2008 NBA Draft will be held at the Wamu Theatre in Madison Square Gardens, NY on June 26th, 2008

Monday, May 19, 2008

Spurs Not Ready to Give Title Up

The San Antonio Spurs, led by Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker, beat the young New Orleans Hornets 91-82 to advance to the Western Conference Finals. The Spurs arranged a meeting with the Los Angeles Lakers. The Spurs were anchored by their three superstars, however, it wasn't only the three who delivered the blows against the Spurs. Bruce Bowen, Michael Finley and Robert Horry delivered big three's in the crucial third quarter, a quarter that determines who will win the game in this series.

Tony Parker added 17 points, including a crucial jumper in the final minute, as the Spurs held off a late rally to become the first team in this series to win on the road. Tim Duncan had 16 points and 14 rebounds for the Spurs, seeking to win back-to-back titles for the first time.

The Spurs aren't ready to give up their title just yet. The defending champs showed that they are still the champions and until someone beats them, they won't go away. The San Antonio Spurs and Los Angeles Lakers showdown will be an exciting match-up as Kobe Bryant brings in a new crew of Lakers to regain NBA Supremacy from the Spurs.

Spurs Fans are classless

Friday, May 16, 2008

Spurs Fans Are Classless

In Game 6 of the Hornets and Spurs, Robert Horry struck again. No, it wasn't Big Shot Bob. Those days are now over. Instead, Cheap Shot Bob appeared again. Robert Horry delivered a leaning pick into David West's injured back and sent West into the locker room. If you see the replay, it isn't a malicious play. But because it was Robert Horry, you'll now think and wonder that it is. Yes, Robert Horry is the Spurs' hit man. However Pop tries his sarcasm to suggest that Horry's foul was clean, everyone knows how Horry thinks, especially after his hip-check to Steve Nash last year in the playoffs.

But enough about Horry, cause everyone already knows how dirty the guy is on the court. What I was shocked to see was how the crowd reacted. When David West was down with his injured back, the crowd started to chant "Horry...Horry...Horry!" I can't believe my ears! These people are cheering someone who decked a person to the ground with the possibility of a long term injury. These people are just classless. I used to admire San Antonio. They had the best team this decade, the best organization, the best fans. No one in the world gives them credit despite winning championships every other year. And their fans are a big part of it...and I admire them for that. But after game 6, i simply lost respect for them. You just don't cheer for someone who injured another person. Even if the person who committed the foul was on your team.

Bowen used to be the Dirty Harry in San Antonio, now it's "Dirty Horry", along with his Mob.

Spurs Not Ready to Give Title Up

Manu is The Man!!!

Hornets are a Tough Match-Up For Spurs in Game 1

Derek Fisher…Key to Lakers’ Success?

Watch The NBA Playoffs Online!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

2008 NBA Draft

The 2008 NBA Draft Lottery is near. The draft predictions since my last blog about the draft have changed. Derrick Rose is now the top prospect in the NBA Draft since he dazzled the nation in his tournament performance. Michael Beasley is still a solid pick at the top 2 spots. OJ Mayo jumped from number 10 to number 3. The flamboyant USC Trojan got his hype back due to some lackluster performances from other prospects. One player who cracked the top 10 is LSU Freshman Anthony Randolph. He is an extremely versatile forward with great quickness and athleticism, although he needs to bulk up a bit for the NBA game.

Here is the list of the top ten according to NBADraft.net, as of May 12, 2008:
1. Derrick Rose 6-3 195 PG Memphis Fr.
2. Michael Beasley 6-9 235 SF K.St. Fr.
3. OJ Mayo 6-4 210 SG USC Fr.
4. Brook Lopez 7-0 260 C Stanford So.
5. Jerryd Bayless 6-3 182 SG Ariz. Fr.
6. Eric Gordon 6-4 220 SG Indiana Fr.
7. DeAndre Jordan 7-0 250 C TX A&M Fr.
8. Anthony Randolph 6-10 200 SF LSU Fr.
9. Danilo Gallinari 6-10 220 SF Italy 1988
10. Nicolas Batum 6-8 210 SG France 1988

Can't wait til the 2008 NBA Draft Lottery to determine who gets a crack at choosing either Rose or Beasley.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Jerry Stackhouse: Carlisle is the Right Fit!

Jerry Stackhouse believes that Rick Carlisle is a right fit for the Mavs. Many believe that this isn't so.

"He's the best guy available and the best coach for our team with our personalities," said Stackhouse, who played for Carlisle in Detroit. "He's the best fit without question. There are not enough positive things I can say about him."

"Rick is smart enough to get it done," Stackhouse assured. "If you judge him from what he has done in the past, there is reason to ask can this guy adjust to what the Mavericks want to do as they go forward. But knowing him, he's a coach who adjusts and operates with the personnel he has."

Jerry Stackhouse is not sure to be on the Mavs' roster come training camp. Many believe that the coaching change is one of many moves Mark Cuban will make this off-season for the Mavs, who lost in the first round to the New Orleans Hornets.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Derek Fisher…Key to Lakers’ Success?

Johnny Ludden wrote a column in Yahoo! Sports about Derek Fisher being the "Most Valuable Teammate." It was something I have never thought about when thinking of the Lakers' success story this season. I always attribute it to Kobe's passion for the game, or Gasol's addition to the team. But thinking about it, Fisher might be the 2nd biggest factor for the Lakers' winning ways. In 1996, the Kobe Bryant and Derek Fisher Lakers career started. They won 3 championships together then the Laker Dynasty pieces went their separate ways. Kobe stayed on, and the Lakers weren't winning that much.

Last season, when Kobe was eliminated, Derek Fisher was deep into the playoffs. Then came the news on Fisher's Daughter's cancer. Fisher needed to move to a city where there are facilities that can cure Fisher's daughter. He moved to L.A.

Kobe was delighted to have his most trusted teammate back in a Laker uniform. Fisher was the veteran presence they needed. Now, he has played big for the Lakers. Unfortunately for the Jazz, it was Fisher, the guy they let go for his daughter's cause, who nailed the dagger in game 2 of the Lakers-Jazz series.

The Lakers is often about Kobe Bryant, but after reading Ludden's column, this duo may somehow be likened to the famous quote about Jordan and Pippen, "Michael never won a ring without Scottie." The Lakers is not just about Kobe Bryant, it can also be about Derek Fisher.

Spurs Not Ready to Give Title Up

Arenas Won't Return If Jamison Doesn't

According to Gilbert Arenas' Blog, if the Washington Wizards don't resign Antawn Jamison, then Agent Zero won't be back as a Wizard either.

"If he doesn't come back, I'm not coming back," Arenas said Wednesday in a post on his blog.

Arenas can opt out of his contract with the Wizards, a move he has publicly stated he would do for more money. Jamison will become a free agent and expect many teams to acquire the services of Jamison who steered the Wizards into a playoff spot despite injuries to Arenas and Caron Butler.

Arenas and Jamison have been teammates the past four season in Washington and two season in Golden State. Arenas said that Jamison is part of his success as a player. So having Jamison back is a must for Ernie Grunfeld if he wants Arenas back.

For more topics about the Wizards and the recently concluded Cleveland-Washington Series, visit Gilbert Arenas Blog.

NBA News Blog

Kevin Garnett Saves Celtics

The Cleveland Cavs fell victim to the "Kevin Garnett basketball show". Garnett scored 28 points, grabbed 8 rebounds, and dished out 3 assists to lead the Celtics to a 1-0 series lead on a night 2 of the big three were having off-nights. Garnett was amazing both on the offensive and the defensive ends. When the Celtics didn't know where to get the points from, they went to one man that can surely create some shots.

LeBron James was held to just 12 points on 2-of-18 shooting, but vowed that he won't have the same fate in game 2.

“I can’t play no worse than I did last night,” James said.

Whatever the players may say, game 2 promises to be another exciting one. Hopefully, this game would show more "on fire nights" rather than a couple of off-nights from superstars. LeBron has to comeback strong, or else the Cavs are doomed. For the Celtics, they hope Paul Pierce and Ray Allen comes back and contribute to the "Kevin Garnett Basketball Show."

Garnett Wins Defensive Player of the Year

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Watch The NBA Playoffs Online!

NBA Playoffs

The NBA playoffs is the most important part of the NBA season. This is when you find out if your team's offseason or mid-season moves are worth it and will take your team to the NBA Finals. This is the time when the game gets more physical compared to the regular season. The true character of a player, or a team, shows in the playoffs. Is your favorite player a true superstar? Or will choke when it comes to the last shot of a game 7 of an NBA playoff series? In short, the playoffs is the most heart-thumping part of an NBA season. Not being able to watch it...SUCKS!

Our cable provider had a disagreement with the cable channel that carries all the NBA games in the Philippines late last year. Early in January, all I could do was read the news on the internet. I write about the NBA a lot in my Sports Blog, that's why it was hard for me not to watch the games.

But come February, I discovered a way to watch the games online. Their called P2P Channels. These channels give live feeds of live events such as sports, news channels, movies, tv shows, etc., to people all over the world. How do you use it? First, you have to download a P2P player. I've got three on my computer: SOPCast, TVU, and TVAnts. There are more players, so just pick what suits you best. Once I have installed the player on my computer, I go to http://myP2P.eu and look for live sports and click it. There you will find the NBA Playoff Schedule and the games that are available. Just pick a game, click play, and there you go, you're off to watching your favorite NBA team...LIVE!!!

Good luck to all the teams! Hope all of you could watch the NBA Playoffs!

Spurs Not Ready to Give Title Up

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Brandon Vera Trains for Fabricio Werdum

Brandon Vera tries to get one step closer to having another title shot when he faces Fabricio Werdum in UFC 85. Brandon Vera has been successful in the UFC with his strikes. But there are reports that Werdum has been training hard for the stand-up game and has shown major improvements. Here is Brandon Vera's training video:

D'Antoni To The Bulls?

An ESPN.com report said that Mike D'Antoni is close to a deal with the Chicago Bulls. However, a Phoenix Radio Station reported that the Suns Coach is closer to a deal with The New York Knicks citing money issues with the Bulls. Jerry Reinsford said that the next head coach has to adhere with the team's defensive philosophy. That might be a problem because Mike D'Antoni is an offensive minded coach.

Mike D'Antoni has had a winning record the past 4 1/2 seasons with the Suns. But a late season clash of philosophy with General Manager Steve Kerr has caused friction in Phoenix. Now, the Suns are allowing D'Antoni to speak with other teams and walk away from his contract. This is a ploy of cheapskate owner Robert Sarver not to pay D'Antoni his remaining $8.5 million. If he fired D'Antoni, he has to pay him the remaining amount in his contract.

A Bulls source said that no offer has been made to D'Antoni, so we'll just have to wait for about another week to see what happens. The Suns wants this coaching issue resolved by next week.

Monday, May 5, 2008

The NBA's Stupid Replay Rule

first read DAN WETZEL's article here:Magic fall victim to NBA’s poor timing

The NBA should allow referees to look at replays at any time in the game for any kind of call. Referees get the majority of complains in games from players, coaches, executives during a call that is questionable. Even if they want to double-check it their call, they couldn't because they're not allowed to. All these complains should be directed to David Stern. CHANGE THE RULE!!! Referees get the blame for you poor decision making!

NBA Playoffs: Where Chris Paul Happens!

If the MVP voting included the playoffs, then Chris Paul might have just been voted the MVP. Chris Paul has continued to dominate this year's post-season by confusing the Spurs with an array of razzle-dazzle moves. He scored 30 points and dished out 12 assists in leading the Hornets to a 102-84 win to take a 2-0 lead. He just played around with the Spurs on offense. No one could defend CP3.

Chris Paul is the best point guard today. Sorry Deron, maybe some other year. This year clearly belongs to CP3!!!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Hornets are a Tough Match-Up For Spurs in Game 1

The New Orleans Hornets beat the San Antonio Spurs in Game 1 of theit Playoff Series 101-82. Although the score was a blowout, it wasn't that easy for the Hornets, who trailed by 11 in the 1st half. But after halftime, the Hornets showed that the Spurs could not apply the formula they used to beat the Suns. Tony Parker was the primary reason for the Spurs' dominance of the Suns. But during game 1 against the Hornets, Tony Parker couldn't dominate CP3 the way he dominated Steve Nash. CP3 showed superb lateral movement and was always in front of Parker. During the times when Parker got past CP3, he was usually met by Tyson Chandler or David West, who are quicker and more athletic than Shaq, who was toyed around by Parker during the Suns/Spurs series.

In the offensive end, the Spurs have got to find a way to stop Chris Paul. CP3 doesn't score every time he drives to the basket, but he always creates ways for his teammates to score. Every time Paul drives to the lane, a ton of Spurs collapses on him, thus creating open shots for his teammates. And Paul broke Bruce Bowen's ankles a couple of times.

In game 1, David West looked like the veteran, while Tim Duncan just scored 5 points, which matched a career playoff low. West scored 30 points through simple, fundamentally sound basketball moves against the Spurs all night. Shades of Tim Duncan? It's going to be interesting to see how the power forward match-up will develop in this series.

Can the Spurs come back in game 2? Definitely! They're the defending champs! And they've got, in my opinion, the best power forward in the game today. Duncan will be back for sure. Let's see what adjustments Greg Popovich make for next game.

Spurs Not Ready to Give Title Up

Carlisle Is New Mavs Coach

The New York Post has reported that former Indiana Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle has agreed to terms to be the next head coach of the Dallas Mavericks. Carlisle, who has been interviewed by both the Bulls and the Knicks was quickly snagged by the Dallas Mavericks who recently fired head coach Avery Johnson after losing in the first round of the playoffs for the second straight year.

Rivers Disturbed At Fourth Quarter Technical

Boston head coach Doc Rivers was "Disturbed" by how Paul Pierce reacted to fouling out in the fourth quarter of their game 6 match-up with the Atlanta Hawks. Doc Rivers said that it has been a team rule this year that no one should get a technical foul in the fourth quarter because "It's just not enough time to make up for it in the fourth."

Pierce was called for a technical for throwing his headband. According to NBA rules, it is an automatic technical if any player throws a wristband or a headband.

Kobe Bryant Will Be Named MVP

Finally, after 12 years in the NBA, one of the most explosive players in the game's history will finally win his first, and much deserved, MVP award. Reports are saying that he will be awarded by David Stern in L.A. next week. Chris Paul is probably the player who came in second. Paul might have won the MVP award if he was playing like this in other years. His MVP-like season however was overshadowed by Bryant's brilliant handling of the Lakers' trade fiasco, and the way he turned the Lakers around into a championship caliber team.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Coaching Changes in the NBA

Now that some teams have been eliminated from the playoffs, expect that there will be lots of coaching interviews that will happen from now until training camp. Two of the most mentioned names so far have been Avery Johnson, who was recently fired by the Mavs, and Mike D'Antoni, the Suns mentor who many expect won't return next season. Another big name who had already landed a job is Larry Brown. Brown joined fellow former Tar Heel Michael Jordan to try to turn things around in Charlotte.

When it comes to the teams who are looking for coaches, the most watched teams have to be Chicago and New York. New York had interviewed Mark Jackson for the job, but the Bulls also seem interested in the former Knick point guard. However, with recent news that Sam Mitchell might be on the chopping block in Toronto, the Knicks might give it a go with Mitchell. Donnie Walsh, the new boss in New York, loved Mitchell's toughness when Mitchell played in in Indiana for Walsh. Some say that Mitchell might be the one who can make Eddy Curry and Zach Randolph work more.

In Toronto, it seems that Bryan Colangelo would be reuniting with Mike D'Antoni if the Suns decide that they would trash their run-run-run style of play. Steve Kerr had emphasized that the only way to win a championship is through defense. If D'Antoni is fired, there is no doubt that Colangelo would hire D'Antoni and build the new run-run-run team in Toronto.

As for the Bulls, GM John Paxon seems to like Avery Johnson. In some reports, they state that Paxon is leaning towards hiring a former player who was "tough" during his playing years. With that said, Avery Johnson and Mark Jackson would be the most fitting candidates for the job.

The coaching carousel continues in the NBA. No man is safe from the axing of the head offices. Not even coaches who compiled a winning record for the team. For team owners and executives, only one thing is important...win a title.

Back to Niko's Sports Blog