Pacers drama — AD gets trolled — No. 8 over No. 1 seeds

Friday, May 7th, 2021

  The Opening Tip

  • The Pacers are sick of their first-year head coach.
  • Wait until you see Kyrie Irving’s late-game layup from last night. 
  • The Reddit community was not having Anthony Davis’ #SponCon AMA.

This weekend's best matchups

1. The Pacers’ outside-the-box coaching hire is nosediving while the person they fired is thriving

The Indiana Pacers are like NBA refs -- if you’re hearing or talking about them, it’s probably not for a good reason.

Cue this week’s NBA newscycle: Their first-year head coach, Nate Bjorkgren, is likely going to be fired after this disastrous season for Indiana.

(Side note: There are two types of NBA head coaching hires you’ve never heard of. The Nick Nurses, who burst onto the scene and make you understand why they went from anonymous to great coach, and the Nate Bjorkgrens, who make you realize why they weren't nationally known before they got hired.)

From ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski:
 

“Bjorkgren has significant work to do with his relationships among players throughout the team and with some members of the organization, but he has thus far shown a willingness to try to address those issues, sources said.”

So … he’s an ***hole?

From B/R’s Jake Fischer:
 

“Bjorkgren's communication style has been categorized as aggressive and abrasive with players and members of the Pacers staff, from his front-of-the-bench assistants down to trainers and equipment personnel. That behavior was cited as the cause for one assistant coach's resignation.”
So … he’s an ***hole!

More from Fischer: 
 
“(Domantas) Sabonis felt compelled to approach Bjorkgren on one occasion, where he encouraged the coach to be kinder to Indiana's staff.”
When an NBA All-Star is telling a first-year coach to cool it, yikes. 

Meanwhile … the coach who the Pacers fired last year, Nate McMillan, is 23-11 since taking over the Atlanta Hawks for the fired Lloyd Pierce. 

The Bjorkgren isn’t always better on the other side.

2. Daily GIF: This move by Kyrie was too sick 😤😤

(Too harsh?)

To be fair, Kyrie Irving was great last night (45 points on 31 shots), but the Nets dropped their fourth straight to the Mavericks. Milwaukee is now only a half-game behind Brooklyn for the No. 1 seed in the East.

3. Trivia time

Who was the last No. 8 seed to beat a No. 1 seed in the playoffs?

Answer at the bottom.

4. Anthony Davis’ Reddit AMA didn’t go as planned

Anthony Davis held a Reddit “ask me anything” session on the NBA subreddit on Tuesday, which was actually just a thinly-veiled vehicle for the promotion of his new RUFFLES sponsorship.

Sensing a definite con, the Reddit community decided to troll the ever-living hell out of him instead of taking the time to pick the brain of a top 10 NBA player. 

Here are some of the funniest/most outlandish questions Davis received.

From user farikogrim:
 

“Hey AD! I met you back in 2009 back in high school, I went to Perspectives ITT. You were already pretty famous at that point, but I remember you being pretty down to earth and chill. How has stardom affected you’re attitude? In what ways has it changed you? Oh yeah, I took a pic with you too.”

https://imgur.com/a/R0XWL00

(It sounds innocent until you click the link.)

From hotsaucename:
 

“If you could create a human centipede with 2 other NBA players, who would they be, what position in the centipede would they be, and why?”
From mbourdet12:
 
“How big is LeBron’s (redacted)?”

From lololololololol59:
 

“What are your thoughts on Cleananthony Early?”

From user OutlandishnessShot87: 
 

“Should Pete Rose be in the hall of fame?”

From Obamna_:
 

“Do you and lebron (redacted)”

From kiwiwikikiwiwikikiwi:
 

“Hey AD big fan. Should President Biden readdress the moving of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem?"

From teensonacid:
 

“Can you tell us what it’s like to get absolutely bodied by Nuggets players half your size?”

Surprisingly, AD didn't weigh in on Rose's Hall of Fame case, Biden's foreign policy decisions, or what he and LeBron choose to do on their own time. 

5. By the numbers

27 years

On this day 27 years ago, the No. 8 Nuggets knocked off the No. 1, 63-win Seattle SuperSonics in a decisive Game 5, marking the first time in NBA history an eight seed beat a one seed. It’s since happened four more times -- the 1999 Knicks over Miami, the 2007 Warriors over Dallas, the 2011 Grizzlies over San Antonio, and the 2012 76ers over Chicago.

Pictured above is the iconic photo of Denver’s Dikembe Mutombo after the win.


37-29, 37-29

After last night’s blowout loss to the Clippers, the Lakers are 37-29 -- the same record as your 2020-21 Knicks.


-45

It’s time for our weekly check in on Kevin Love: In a blowout loss to the Trail Blazers on Wednesday, he was -45 in 26 minutes on the floor. It was the worst plus/minus for the Cavs since 2012.


27-7, 16-17

The Nets have a 27-7 record with James Harden and a 16-17 record without him. It’s a shame he got injured, because the MVP would have been way more interesting if he was playing every night. Speaking of which …


-500

Nikola Jokic is now a -500 favorite to win the MVP. In other words, he’s winning the MVP. At No. 41 overall in the 2014 draft, he’ll become by far the lowest draft pick to win the award.

6.  Quick hits

  • ICY haven’t looked at the standings recently, here you go
  • Ernie picked Utah to make the Finals last night.
  • James Harden says he’ll be back before the playoffs start.
  • Here’s Tacko Fall’s dreamshake from garbage time the other night.
  • The G League is launching a team in Mexico City next year. 
  • There’s some weird behind-the-scenes stuff going on with the Cavs and Collin Sexton.

7.  Reads and podcast pick

Trivia answer:  2012: No. 8 76ers vs. No. 1 Bulls


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