The Knicks' Tom Thibodeau and the Suns' Monty Williams have to be looked upon as prime contenders for the coach of the year award, and they'll be in action on Thursday night in situations that might be very favorable for them.
And that spells opportunity as you play these games at 1Vice.
You will notice that while the Pistons have a dismal record of 9-25, they are actually above water against the pointspread (17-15-2 ATS). And they just destroyed Toronto (129-105) with personnel no team really craves.
That was their fourth road win of the season, and now they travel to Madison Square Garden, where the Knicks returned from an absolute drubbing they took at the hands of San Antonio. The Spurs don't take a lot of three-pointers under coach / politician Gregg Popovich, but they made seven on 14 attempts in the third quarter alone in that game.
That was out of character for them. And it was very out of character for the Knicks, who have held opponents to just 33% shooting beyond the arc.
We had mentioned somewhere along the way that we expected Derrick Rose to take over as the starting point guard in New York. Well, that was the case in three previous games (with good numbers, we might add) before he had to sit out against San Antonio, due to COVID protocols.
But that was on the basis of an inconclusive test, not a positive one. So he flew back with the team and might actually be able to play. And by the way, Immanuel Quickley, the good-looking rookie he's mentoring, had 26 points vs. the Spurs.
Was there any chemistry out there the other night? Well, the Knicks had to go with Frank Ntilikina at point guard, and he hadn't played in a game since December.
We doubt Tom Thibodeau is going to stand for something lackluster for a second straight game. And after all, he is the guy these players submitted to as he changed the "culture."
Are you ready for the Knicks to actually be over the .500 mark at the All-Star break?
There are certain things that really sneak up on you. And one of those things is that, as I look, I see the Phoenix Suns have the second best record in the National Basketball Association.
They are 23-11, and if you count those eight in a row they won in the bubble, they have now won 31 of their last 42 games. If that's not impressive, what is?
Yes, there's a lot clicking right now, and they don't need their best scorer on the floor to beat the defending world champions. Devin Booker got two technical fouls in rapid-fire succession on Tuesday night, missing half of the third quarter and all of the fourth with the ejection. Yet Phoenix outscored the L.A.Lakers 54-51 in the second half on the way to a 114-104 victory.
That's now twelve wins AND covers in the last 14 games.
Role players are now part of the whole picture in Phoenix; Dario Saric is back in the rotation and scored 21 off the bench the other night. And Chris Paul can make any player and any offense better. He changes a game even if he scores in the single digits.
It's kind of unusual to see the Warriors in the lower reaches of the NBA in the category of "Offensive Rating," but they are 21st. Thankfully they have played pretty good defense, and as a result they are a contender for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West.
Here is an interesting thing to ponder, considering that Steph Curry leads the NBA in three-pointers attempted and made - Phoenix is second best in the NBA in both triples allowed per game (11) and three-point percentage defense (34.3%). I think they'll be okay here.
Charles Jay is unlike most analysts associated with
handicapping and the gaming industry, in that he also has had extensive
experience in the so-called "mainstream" media as well.
He has been involved with professional sports industry for
almost two decades, working in all capacities, as a matchmaker, booking agent,
manager, and also as an editorial consultant on USA Network's "Tuesday Night
Fights," which, for a time, carried "Charles Jay's Line" on
upcoming fights. As a broadcaster, he has called world title fights around the
world for various outlets, and has served as a color commentator for Sunshine
Network and Prime Network.
His radio experience includes being the host of numerous
programs, including "Sportswatch with Charles Jay" on KDWN in Las
Vegas, "Total Action" on WAXY 790 in Miami, and "Charles Jay's
Winning Edge", syndicated into 55 markets by the American Radio Networks,
and he's done podcasts on all subjects related to sports, gaming and popular
Working within the casino industry, he has a special events
consultant for Casino Magic in Mississippi, as that venue established itself in
the early 1990s as a hotbed of boxing activity in particular. Prior to this, he
had been engaged as a casino gaming columnist for, among others, Casino Player,
Card Player and Sports Form (now known as Gaming Today), specializing in
blackjack. And later on, his investigative series on boxing, entitled
"Operation Cleanup," won him much critical acclaim, including the
2003 "Dignity" Award, in the category of "Best Sports
Writer," as bestowed by the Retired Boxers Foundation, a non-profit
organization dedicated to rendering assistance to ex-fighters in need.
In 2006 he established a content services division of his
company, which has eventually evolved in JayWords, and he is arguably the
world's most prolific sports & gaming writer, with over 20,000 articles to
his credit, the vast majority of which have been sports handicapping pieces. So
you might say he has analyzed as many sporting events as anyone alive during
this period. He has also brought some interest with his so-called
"gimmick" odds on special events, including the Academy Awards, the
NFL Draft, and the Super Bowl, for which he posted dozens and dozens of
different odds propositions with various sportsbooks.
This renaissance man is a winner of the Retired Boxers Foundation's "Dignity Award" and a member of the Florida Boxing Hall of Fame; graduate of the University of
Miami (Florida) who currently resides in the South Florida area.