Classic Mixtape of the Week 8/22/2016

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A Kid Named Cudi  – Kid Cudi (2008)

After attempting to listen to Cudi’s last album, “Speedin’ Bullet 2 Heaven,” I had to go back to this mixtape just to remind myself that he actually used to make good music. It’s hard to believe that someone could fall off that hard. That album wasn’t intended to be a rap album, but that doesn’t excuse how awful it was. For Cudi’s sake, let’s go back to the good ol’ days when he exploded on the scene in 2008 with his triple-platinum single “Day ‘n’ Nite,” catching the attention of Kanye West and landing him a deal with GOOD Music.

Click here to download this mixtape.

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Posted in Classic Mixtape of the Week, Music

Classic Mixtape of the Week 8/15/2016

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Dreamchasers 2 – Meek Mill (2012)

Meek Mill’s second mixtape, Dreamchasers 2, received 2.5 million downloads on DatPiff alone in the first 24 hours of its release. There’s a star-studded list of features on this mixtape. Kendrick Lamar, Big Sean, Drake, Mac Miller, 2 Chainz and much of the MMG roster make appearances. Because of the mixtape’s success, Meek included “Amen” and “Burn” as the first two singles for his debut album Dreams and Nightmares. 

Click here to download this mixtape.

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Posted in Classic Mixtape of the Week, Music

The White American All-NBA Team

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In the 2015-16 season, white players made up 23% of the league, but most of them are foreign-born. The number of white Americans in the NBA seems to be dwindling every year. So here I’m going to fill a 12-man roster with the best white American players I can find at this stage of their careers and predict how many games they’d win versus the rest of the NBA. With limited options, I thought this would be an interesting challenge to see how they’d stack up.

Starting Five:

PG – T.J. McConnell

McConnell averaged 8.2 assists per 36 minutes last year as a rookie for the 76ers, a team that it’s not exactly easy to rack up assists on. He protects the ball as well, finishing with a 2.65 assist-to-turnover ratio last season. McConnell’s scrappy play should translate to some tough defense, which will be important on a team that lacks solid defensive players. He’s not much of a scorer, but I believe the rest of the starting lineup will be able to fill it up and McConnell can be a facilitator.

SG – J.J. Redick

Redick has steadily improved each and every season. He shot a career-high 47.5% from the 3-point line last year, good for second in the league, while averaging 16.3 ppg. Redick makes everyone’s life on offense that much easier with his great shooting ability and off-ball movement. The defense always has to key on him running around screens and be aware of where he’s at on the court, therefore allowing others to find openings.

SF – Gordon Hayward

SACRAMENTO, CA - APRIL 5: Gordon Hayward #20 of the Utah Jazz looks on during the game against the Sacramento Kings on April 5, 2015 at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2015 NBAE (Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images)

On this team, Gordon Hayward would finally have some help on the offensive end. Coming off the best season (19.7 ppg, 5.0 reb, 3.7 apg) of his career, I think Hayward should be the star of this team. At 26 years old, Hayward is just now entering his prime. Much like with the Jazz, a lot will be asked of him at the end of games because he’s one of the few guys on the roster that can create his own shot.

PF – Kevin Love

Kevin Love has received a lot of criticism since joining the Cleveland Cavaliers for not being as good as most anticipated he would be. However, on a team where he would be the first or second option, I think he still has the ability to average 20 points and 10 rebounds a game. Don’t forget that just a couple seasons ago Love averaged 26/12.

C – Mason Plumlee

Plumlee had a really nice playoffs for the Portland Trail Blazers. He fits in well with this roster with his ability to finish around the basket, protect the rim and even pass. During the postseason, Plumlee averaged 11.8 rebounds as well as 4.8 assists in just 28 mpg.

Bench:

PF – Ryan Anderson

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Anderson struck gold this offseason for $80 million with the Houston Rockets. He’s the prototypical stretch 4 that has always been able to score, averaging 18.1 points per 36 minutes for his career. I got him playing the 6th man role that he was put in the last few years with the Pelicans. The biggest struggle throughout his career has been staying healthy.

SF – Chandler Parsons

Parsons never reached expectations in his two years with the Mavs, but this didn’t stop him from signing a max deal with the Grizzlies for $94 million over 4 years. Unfortunately for him, that max contract isn’t landing him a starting spot on this team.

SG/SF – Kyle Korver

Korver struggled a bit with his shot last year (maybe showing his age), but he’s still one of the premier deep threats in the NBA. With him or Redick on the court at all times, this team should be able to spread the floor nicely.

C – Cody Zeller

Zeller was close to grabbing a starting spot ahead of Plumlee, but ultimately I like him coming off the bench. Last season, Zeller averaged 8.7 points to go along with 6.2 rebounds in 24 minutes per game.

PG – Kirk Hinrich

I’m hoping Hinrich has enough in the tank to give 12-15 minutes per game as the backup point guard entering his 14th NBA season. He’s a tough player that can run the offense and play good defense, but I don’t expect much more out of him.

PF/C – Frank Kaminsky

Kaminsky is another big guy that can shoot from deep. I liked what I saw from him off the bench last season for the Hornets.

PF – David Lee

Every team needs a washed up veteran at the end of the bench, right?

Coaches:

Gregg Popovich and Brad Stevens

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Popovich, the five-time NBA champion and three-time Coach of the Year, with the best young coach at his side would be far and away the best coaching staff in the league. But how far would they be able to take this team?

Prediction:

I strongly believe this team would make the playoffs. Point guard play and team defense is clearly an issue, but they’d be a very tough team to guard. There are so many shooters that they would be able to create a lot of space for Hayward to drive and Love/Plumlee to roll to the basket. Their limitations would most likely keep them from advancing past the first round, but my prediction is 46 wins.

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Posted in NBA, Sports

Olympic Tennis Recap

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Men’s:

If I were to ask anyone last Friday who the USA team member to be alive in both singles and doubles on Tuesday night I have a feeling your answer would not be Steve Johnson. His partner in doubles, Jack Sock along with Brian Baker and Denis Kudla were all eliminated in the first round of play in Brazil.

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Steve Johnson moves on to the third round in Men’s Singles and along with Jack Sock, make up one of the four pairs alive in doubles. Steve Johnson, the World #22, just got his first career title in Nottingham but the current draw does not look too promising. After a third round match up with Russian Evgeny Donskoy he will most likely be up against odds-on-favorite Andy Murray in the Quarterfinals.

Can the American take down an elite player on the biggest stage?

Prediction

While Sam Querrey from Cali took down Djokovic at Wimbledon, I can’t imagine Steve Johnson stands much of a chance to stop Murray from collecting Back To Back gold medals.

Muller, Nadal, Monfils, and Murray to make the Semifinals

Murray over Nadal in the Finals

Men’s Third Round POD: Nadal/Simon Over 20.5

Women’s:

The upsets keep on coming as Serena Williams goes out in the third round losing to Svitolina, #20 from Ukraine, in a top draw now extremely up for grabs. Venus Williams was eliminated in the first round to Flipkens and the two were then promptly defeated in doubles the very next day. Its safe to say this has been the worst Olympic performance from the sisters of all time. It’s a sad thought but we may never see a Williams’s sister win a gold medal ever again.

The third member of Team USA Sloane Stephens goes down to the player I would call the “Hottest Girl In Sports” Genie Bouchard. Despite the hopes of Canadians and men everywhere, Bouchard could not defeat Kerber, maybe we will see another North American take a crack at it. First Madison Keys has to face youngster and my personal favorite female tennis player, Daria Kasatkina. This girl’s game is strong and recently consistent. Madison should be ready for another great match.

Prediction

I have to side with my country on this one, especially when every other hopeful is on their way back to the states. Give me Keys and I see the over hitting in this match as well.

Kvitova, Puig, Keys, and Kerber to make the Semifinals

Keys over Kvitova in the Finals

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Women’s Quarterfinals POD: Keys/Kasatkina Over 20.5

Dog of the Day: Gilles Muller +160 over RBA

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Posted in Sports, Tennis

Classic Mixtape of the Week 8/8/2016

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Rich Forever – Rick Ross (2012)

This week we bring you Yung Renzel’s third mixtape, Rich Forever. Most rappers use mixtapes to boost their popularity before making it big, but this wasn’t the case for Rick Ross. Rozay was just feeding the streets. He didn’t drop his first tape until after his third studio album, Deeper Than Rap. Most will remember songs like “Stay Schemin'” and “Triple Beam Dreams,” but you can’t sleep on this mixtape as a whole. “Yella Diamonds,” “Last Breath,” “Fuck Em,” “High Definition,” and “King of Diamonds” should all be kept on repeat.

Click here to download.

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Posted in Classic Mixtape of the Week, Music

Why Lebron is Better than Jordan

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1. Lebron is the only player in Finals history to lead his team in points (29.7), rebounds (11.3), assists (8.9), blocks (2.3) and steals (2.6).

2. Lebron has played in the playoffs 11 seasons and made the finals in 7 of them. Jordan made the playoffs in 13 seasons and only made the finals 6 times.

3. Lebron has already surpassed Jordan (12 to 11) in making All-NBA teams.

4. Lebron is a better all-around player. His career averages are 27, 7, 7 while Jordan’s career averages are 30, 6, 5.

5. Michael Jordan had HOF teammates every season that he won a title while Lebron took Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Sasha Pavlovic to the 2007 Finals.

6. Lebron James already has more playoff wins than Jordan.

7. Lebron’s Value Over Replacement is 108.6 while Jordan’s is 104.4.

8. When Jordan left Chicago, the Bulls went to the Eastern Conference Finals and won 55 games. When Lebron left Cleveland they won 19 games and when he left Miami they won 37 games.

9. When facing playoff elimination, Lebron averages 32.9, 10.8, 6.9 while shooting 47.3%. Jordan averaged 31.3, 7.9, 7.0 on 44.5% shooting.

10. Lebron is 9-8 in elimination games. Jordan is 6-7.

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Posted in NBA, Sports

Most Overrated Teams in the 2016 Preseason Rankings

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The Coaches Poll was released a few days ago. Most people hate preseason rankings. They usually reflect how teams finished the previous season and the name of the school more than being an actual prediction of how they’ll perform in the upcoming season. Some may remember that Auburn started off last season ranked #7. After escaping with an overtime victory against FCS opponent Jacksonville State, Auburn lost six of their next ten games. Oregon began at #5 before dropping three of their first six games and falling out of the Top 25. Let’s take a look at the teams who are most likely to underperform this year.

Tennessee (#10)

After finishing last season on a six-game winning streak, the Volunteers have cracked the Top 10 for the first time since October 29, 2006. They even received a first-place vote! The bad news is they haven’t played a game yet. Tennessee has to beat some quality teams before they can be considered a national championship contender. In the past nine seasons, they hold an 0-9 record versus teams ranked in the Top 10. Josh Dobbs will keep the Volunteers putting points up on the board, but I’m not convinced they’ll be able to get enough stops on defense to finish the season ranked this high.

LSU (#6)

It looks like we have another SEC team making the list. The Tigers will rely a lot, as they should, on Heisman hopeful Leonard Fournette this season. However, they need to find some type of balance as one player can only carry a team so far. LSU finished last year with a 10-3 record. In those three losses, the Tigers really struggled to score against tough defenses because of their lack of an even close to average passing attack. Defenses were able to key on Fournette and slow him down enough to win those games. And with Brandon Harris returning as QB, I don’t see that changing. LSU will struggle to beat the best teams on their schedule (Alabama, Ole Miss, Florida) with a one-dimensional offense.

USC (#17)

This is exactly why people hate preseason rankings. It seems like every year the Trojans are ranked higher than they should be.

2012 Preseason Ranking: #1; End of Season: Unranked

2013 Preseason Ranking: #24; End of Season: #19

2014 Preseason Ranking: #15; End of Season: #24

2015 Preseason Ranking: #8; End of Season: Unranked

After finishing 8-6 last season, USC somehow manages to start off ranked once again this year, sitting at #17. I expect them to fall out of the rankings pretty quickly though. They have an absolutely brutal schedule early on. They get Alabama (#1) in Week 1 and then go on the road to face Stanford (#7) and Utah in Weeks 3 and 4 respectively. The Trojans return 10 starters to a high-powered offense, but scoring wasn’t a problem for them last year (33.9 ppg). Maybe there’s hope with new coach Clay Helton, but I’ll wait until they prove themselves.

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Posted in NCAAF, Sports
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