For years now, the 2016 NBA Finals have forever lived in infamy as one of the greatest sports comebacks of all-time. Down 3-1 in the series to the 73-9 Golden State Warriors, LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers clawed their way back and eventually won their first title in franchise history. It was an incredible achievement that is still talked about at length to this day. Recently though, former Cavaliers general manager David Griffin spoke to Sports Illustrated about that season and had some interesting comments about LeBron and his motivations following that season.
“There wasn’t a lot else for him,” Griffin said. "I don’t think he’s the same animal anymore about winning.” Essentially, Griffin doesn't think LeBron is trying as hard to win these days because winning a championship Cleveland was his holy grail.
We reported earlier that Griffin had some other peculiar statements about his tenure with the Cavs and how it wasn't actually that enjoyable. As Griffin explained, he didn't like how the team was being built and in turn, it made him dislike the sport.
“Everything we did was so inorganic and unsustainable and, frankly, not fun. I was miserable,” Griffin said. “Literally the moment we won the championship I knew I was gonna leave. There was no way I was gonna stay for any amount of money."
What do you think of Griffin's comments? Does he have a point? Let us know in the comments.
JR Smith Reacts To Being Waived By The Cleveland Cavaliers
Smith is happy to be a free agent.
JR Smith has been a polarizing player in the NBA thanks to his infectious personality that has given him the nickname "the Henny God." Smith can frequently be seen taking his shirt off and having an overall good time wherever he goes, although sometimes this doesn't translate well to the basketball court. During the 2018 NBA Finals, Smith made one of the worst mistakes in the history of the sport when he dribbled the ball out thinking the Cavs had a lead. The score was actually tied at the time and the team ended up losing in game 1 of the Finals. Eventually, the Cavaliers were swept and LeBron James left the team.
Heading into this season, it was clear that Smith was on thin ice and after just 11 games, he was benched for the rest of the season. On Monday, Smith was finally waived from the team which makes him a free agent. Tim Hardaway Jr. took to his Instagram story with some words of encouragement for Smith, saying "free at last. Thank God Almight, he is free at last." Smith saw the message and reposted it on his own Instagram story which pretty much lets us know that he was anxious for his tenure in Cleveland to come to an end.
While his demise in the city is unfortunate, at least he can say he won a championship.
Shirtless JR Smith Steals The Show At MLB All-Star Celebrity Game
Smith knows how to get the party started.
JR Smith is one of those NBA players that really knows how to party and get a crowd riled up. Throughout his NBA career, he has been known for taking his shirt off whenever the opportunity arises and the results are usually pretty hilarious. Whether it be at the World Series or during an actual NBA game, Smith isn't afraid to show off his body which is completely covered in tattoos. While Smith's future with the Cleveland Cavaliers is up in the air, that hasn't stopped the fans in the city from embracing him as a big personality.
The city's love and admiration for Smith was on full display this past weekend when he got to be a part of the MLB All-Star Celebrity Game. As you would imagine, JR came out with no shirt on and the fans absolutely loved it. Smith seemed to be stumbling around as part of the gag which led to some fans on Twitter saying he must have been off the Henny.
Smith helped the Cavs win their first and only championship in 2016, although he famously made a huge error in Game 1 of the NBA Finals last year which turned into one of the best memes of the year.
As of right now, some believe the Lakers are interested in acquiring the shooter.
Cavs Owner Dan Gilbert Faces "Intensive" Rehab After Suffering Stroke
Gilbert has been released from the hospital.
Last month, Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert was admitted into the hospital after suffering a stroke. Gilbert has been in the hospital for weeks so that he could recover and in a recent statement, the team revealed that Gilbert has now been released and will have a long road to recovery. In fact, Gilbert will be headed to a rehabilitation center where he will try to get back to where he was before the health problems.
“The Gilbert family is thankful for the tremendous outpouring of support they have received,” Quicken Loans CEO Jay Farner said. “Yesterday, Dan Gilbert was discharged from the hospital and will now continue focusing on his recovery at an in-patient rehabilitation center. The entire family is incredibly grateful for the world-class care Dan received from the entire staff of Beaumont Hospital. Dan is looking forward to beginning an intensive rehabilitation program and is eager to continue the progress he has made over the last several weeks.”
Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images for Best Buddies
Gilbert has been the owner of the Cavaliers since 2005 and has seen the team make it to five NBA Finals and even win an NBA Championship in 2016. The owner is known for his comments about LeBron James back in 2010 when he decided to leave the team for Miami.
Lakers Expected To Hire Ty Lue As Head Coach: Report
Lue has been one of the names surrounding the Lakers head coaching search.
After a disappointing season that ended with the Los Angeles Lakers missing the playoffs, the team decided to part ways with head coach Luke Walton. There were high expectations placed on the Lakers this season thanks to the addition of LeBron James, although the team wasn't able to deliver. Since Walton has left the team, the Lakers have been working hard to find themselves a new head coach. Names such as Monty Williams, Ty Lue, and Jason Kidd have been thrown around, with LeBron reportedly being the biggest fan of Lue due to their Cleveland connection.
Earlier today, the Suns announced that they had made Williams their head coach and now, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting that the Lakers are expected to offer Lue their head coaching position.
"The expectation is the Lakers will move toward Ty Lue as head coach, but there's been no offer made to him yet, league sources tell ESPN," Woj wrote on Twitter.
Lue and James won an NBA Title together back in 2016 so it only makes sense that the superstar would want him coaching the young squad. Lue also played for the Lakers from 1998-2001, winning 2 NBA titles in the process.
Stay tuned for further updates on the Lakers coaching search.
JR Smith Generating Heavy Trade Interest From NBA Teams: Report
The Cavs have been receiving trade calls about the shooting guard.
Despite all of the jokes that have surrounded JR Smith since the 2018 NBA Finals, the veteran shooting guard has proven himself as a valuable asset to any NBA team that wants him. This has been confirmed by a report courtesy of Cleveland.com which states that multiple teams have been calling the Cleveland Cavaliers with intentions to trade for him. Cavs general manager Koby Altman explained that Smith’s contract expires next season which makes him a great rental player.
“We have a trade chip in JR Smith, and his contract, where we can take on some money that other teams are trying to get some cap relief from,” Altman explained. “We are actually the only team in the NBA that can provide guaranteed cap relief until July 1. We can guarantee that right now and we actually had a phone call (Thursday) on that trade chip. So, we’re going to keep on being aggressive adding those assets because we do eventually want to consolidate and be really good at some point.”
Jason Miller/Getty Images
Smith and the Cavaliers have been on the outs as of late. Smith only played 11 games with the team this year before they sidelined him for the season. At the time, the team even issued a statement thanking Smith for his contributions to the team and their championship in 2016.
Stay tuned for updates on Smith’s trade status.
Kevin Hart Says He Tried Recruiting LeBron To The 76ers
"Kiss my ass."
That was allegedly LeBron James' response to Kevin Hart when the comedian tried to recruit him to his hometown Philadelphia 76ers. TMZ Sports recently caught up with the Philly-native who explained that he attempted to convince the 4x NBA MVP to sign with the Sixers once he becomes a free agent after this season and even sent him $40 to sweeten the deal.
However, when asked about LeBron's future, Hart said he truly believes he'll end up staying in Cleveland. The 33-year old All-Star forward is thriving in his 15th season, averaging 27.4 points, 8.6 rebounds and a career-best 9.1 assists per game for the third place Cavs.
According to a report by The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor earlier this month, the Sixers are on LeBron's short list teams that he'd consider signing with once he becomes a free agent. Other teams on that list include his current team, as well as the Los Angeles Lakers and Houston Rockets.
LeBron James Throws Down Arguably Dunk Of The Year (And Maybe His Career?)
Holy crap did LeBron James just bring the house down in Portland. While taking on the Portland TrailBlazers at the Moda Center in Oregon, LeBron threw down what is arguably the dunk the year in the NBA, and maybe the best his 15-year career for the matter. This dunk is nasty y'all!
With Cavs down 13-14 early in the first quarter, LeBron goes around a pick at the top key and picks up momentum to drive down the lane and straight up posterize Blazers Center Jusuf Nurkic. Jumping from about halfway in the free throw lane, Lebron elegantly soars through the air and aggressively throws the dunk down, while flexing his muscles running down the court knowing what he just did to poor Nurkic.
Everything from the height & power to the aggression & finesse, the dunk was absolutely nasty, and will definitely be on the highlight reels to come.
The coincidence the monster dunk is that just days earlier LeBron referred to himself to “fine wine,” and said that he was only getting better with age. Welp, this video definitely backs up that statement that's for sure.
Watch LeBron soar threw the air and posterize Nurkic in what is one the sickest dunks his career. Does it make dunk the year?
Kevin Love Opens Up About In-Game Panic Attack
Cleveland Cavaliers All-Star forward Kevin Love published an essay for The Player's Tribune today, titled "Everyone Is Going Through Something," in which he details a recent in-game panic attack and his thoughts about mental health.
Love explains that he first experienced a panic attack during a November 5th game against the Atlanta Hawks earlier this season, shortly after a conversation on the bench with head coach Tyronn Lue. After being benched by Lue in the third quarter, Love says he took f toward the locker room with his heart racing.
“I was running from room to room, like I was looking for something I couldn’t find,” Love said. “Really I was just hoping my heart would stop racing. It was like my body was trying to say to me, You’re about to die. I ended up on the floor in the training room, lying on my back, trying to get enough air to breathe.”
"It came out nowhere. I’d never had one before. I didn’t even know if they were real," Love wrote. "But it was real — as real a broken hand or a sprained ankle. Since that day, almost everything about the way I think about my mental health has changed."
In addition to being benched and the Cavs' early season struggles, Love also explains that he was dealing with family issues and not sleeping well which contributed to his in-game panic attack. Love wrote that he has since started seeing a therapist and is finding ways to deal with the grief his grandmother's death, something that he had previously failed to confront.
After his experience Love began looking at mental health differently, and he credits Toronto Raptors All-Star DeMar DeRozan for opening up about his struggles with depression and anxiety.
"Just by sharing what he shared, DeMar probably helped some people — and maybe a lot more people than we know — feel like they aren’t crazy or weird to be struggling with depression," Love wrote. "His comments helped take some power away from that stigma, and I think that’s where the hope is."
#NBATwitter Responds To JR Smith's Soup-Throwing Suspension
ESPN's Brian Windhorst and Dave McMenamin today revealed that the Cleveland Cavaliers suspended shooting guard JR Smith for last night's games against the Sixers because he threw a bowl soup at Cavs assistant coach Damon Jones. While that certainly explains why JR was suspended for one game, it also leaves us with plenty questions.
What kind soup was it? Was the soup hot? Did JR throw the bowl from long distance or was this from point blank range? Why was JR so upset that he felt the need to throw soup in the first place?
As now it's still unclear what prompted Smith's soup attack, but he will reportedly return to practice on Friday and is expected to be back in the starting lineup for Cleveland's next game on Saturday against the Denver Nuggets. We're sure Smith, his teammates and Tyronn Lue will be asked about the incident sometime after today's shoot around but in the meantime #NBATwitter is having a field day with the information that has been revealed thus far.
Check out some the reactions below.