An NBA podcast from two lifelong fans who watch obsessively because their bodies won't let them play it much anymore. mikeprada.substack.com
NBA Free Agency: Did anyone really get better?
Mike and Ben run through a hectic, but ultimately muted NBA free agency period. Did any team meaningfully improve its prospects? What do we make of the remade Bucks after the Bogdan Bogdanovic saga? Was Atlanta right to short-circuit its rebuild. Who makes up the West's second tier? Did the Lakers win the offseason? Plus, what will the Warriors look like without Klay Thompson.
The NBA's missed opportunity
Haley O'Shaughnessy, the newest member of the Blue Wire family after her recent departure from The Ringer, joins Ben and Mike to consider the larger state of the NBA as an institution and business. Why is the league pushing forward with a "business as usual"-ish 72-game season amid a larger COVID-19 outbreak? Isn't this the ideal time to try something new? Is Adam Silver doing a good job with the league, or is he letting it run adrift? Why are TV ratings so bad, and how much does that matter? Why can't the NBA sell its own sport effectively? What can the league do to provide more on-court intimacy to its fans? We also talk about NBA media coverage and ways to further improve the marketing of the product.
Talented Texas creative yearns to make it big in the Big Apple
Kristian Winfield (@Krisplashed), our old SB Nation friend who now covers the Brooklyn Nets and NBA at large for the New York Daily News, stops by to talk about the possibility of James Harden in Brooklyn. Why would the Rockets trade Harden now? Do the Nets have enough to make a deal happen? What would this new superteam look like? What's James Harden's value around the league? Then, Ben and Mike (and briefly Kristian) wonder if the Bucks' big moves for Jrue Holiday and Bogdan Bogdanovic are enough to get over the top.
It’s Finally Draft Time (After 8 months)
Ricky O’Donnell (@SBN_Ricky) of SB Nation and Western Illinois Basketball Head Coach, joins the show to discuss everything about the draft. He and Ben discuss guards, bigs, euros, and so much more. What kind of defense can LaMelo Ball play? How do you pronounce Ulm? Is James Wiseman any good? Why can’t the White Sox do anything right? What player could probably bench press less than Ricky or Ben? All that, and so much more.
Daryl's baaaaaaaaaack, the 76ers' new front office dynamic, and player tiers (not rankings!)
Seth Partnow (@SethPartnow), NBA analyst for The Athletic and the former Director of Basketball Research for the Milwaukee Bucks, joins the show to discuss Ben's beloved Philadelphia 76ers hiring Daryl Morey to run their basketball operations. What does it mean for the analytics community (and the NBA as a whole) that Daryl is back in the saddle running an NBA team after his departure from Houston. What will be his toughest challenges? Then, we chat about Seth's Tiers project, a multi-part series separating the top 125 players in the league into tiers instead of ranking them. Why tiers over rankings? Why are rankings bad? (Music to Mike's ears!). What were some of the trickiest challenges of the project? What's even the point of categorizing players at all?
Smarter player rankings, the Lakers' legacy, and the legacy of these NBA Finals
Ben Taylor (@ElGee35), editor of the Thinking Basketball empire (YouTube channel, podcast, Patreon, book, etc) and newly dubbed "Professional Basketball Ranker," joins the show for a post-NBA Finals conversation that goes much wider than these NBA Finals. Ben explains the methodology he uses to rank players, why the exercise is more valuable to him as a way to learn what we don't know than anything else, and how he conceived of this year's top 10 list. We also wrestle with the idea of properly ranking these Lakers in history, why the LeBron/Jordan question can never be answered definitively, and why Anthony Davis' defensive performance made us all think of Bill Russell.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Great hoops podcast
A must listen for fans of the NBA.