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Sports, NBA, NFL, TV, culture. Words at Action Network. Also SI's Cauldron, Sports Raid, BetMGM, Grandstand Central, Sports Pickle, others @wheatonbrando ✞
Kevin Durant and Damian Lillard are NBA superstars, deserving of a Team USA position. But are they enough?
Kevin Durant and Damian Lillard are NBA superstars, deserving of a Team USA position. But are they enough?
NBC Sports Network // Xfinity

THE 1988 SEOUL OLYMPICS ENDED IN MAJOR DISAPPOINTMENT FOR TEAM USA. Despite being led by college stars Danny Manning and David Robinson along with legendary coach John Thompson, Team USA failed in its quest for gold. The Americans lost by six to the Soviet Union in the semifinal and took home a disappointing, embarrassing bronze.

How could a loaded team like that lose to other Olympic amateurs? By not playing against them, as it turns out. Basketball professionals were not allowed to compete in the 1988 Olympics, but teams like USSR got around the rules by listing their guys as…


Photo by fotografierende on Unsplash

WELL, WE WILL CERTAINLY NEVER FORGET THE YEAR 2020. For better and (mostly) for worse, 2020 will live on in our memories as one of the most difficult years of our lifetimes, for any number of reasons.

My year began difficult before the Coronavirus pandemic grabbed our attention here in the United States, thanks to a long personal illness and extended family illness, multiple hospital stays, and quarantine of our own back in January and February, before that became the normal.

In many ways, 2020 was awful. But a lot of good came out of 2020 too. It was a…


Photo by Jens Kreuter on Unsplash

WHAT WAS THE BEST TELEVISION SHOW OF THE 2010S DECADE? Best is subjective, and only you can decide what “best” truly means. Was the best TV show the most compelling? Is it one you binged in one sitting, or did you carefully savor every bite? Does the best TV show have the greatest character development or the best cinematography? It is the most gripping or the most memorable? Is the best show also the most rewatchable or is it perfect on only one watch?

The answer, of course, is any of those things, and whichever definition you choose for yourself…


Jalen Suggs became a legend at Gonzaga with a Final Four shot for the ages. Will his game translate to the next level in the NBA too?
Jalen Suggs became a legend at Gonzaga with a Final Four shot for the ages. Will his game translate to the next level in the NBA too?
YouTube

WE’VE REACHED THE FINAL POSITION OF OUR 2021 NBA DRAFT RANKINGS, and we saved the best and most important position for last. We’ve got #1 pick Cade Cunningham on tap along with Gonzaga legend Jalen Suggs, but the list is far longer and deeper than that. Two Baylor point guards could both go in the lottery fresh off a national championship, Josh Giddey might be the next international star, and a litter of other talent makes the position deep, interesting, and impossible to order.

But rank we must, so let’s get right to our top 14 point guard prospects in…


Jalen Green looks like the next elite scoring two guard in the mold of Bradley Beal or Zach LaVine. Is he the best shooting guard in the draft?
Jalen Green looks like the next elite scoring two guard in the mold of Bradley Beal or Zach LaVine. Is he the best shooting guard in the draft?
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IT’S A WEEK UNTIL THE 2021 NBA DRAFT, and we’re going through the top 50 prospects sorted into the typical five NBA positions. We started with the centers and ran through both forward buckets, but now it’s time to get to the guards, where this draft is deepest and most interesting.

It’s shooting guards (SG) today, so let’s define what, for me, is the least valuable position. A two can’t run the offense, or they’d be a point guard. Many can self create their own offense, but they’re typically more selfish players overall that often don’t elevate the overall team…


Scottie Barnes did all the little things as a forward playing point guard at Florida State. Is he the top power forward prospect in the 2021 NBA Draft?
Scottie Barnes did all the little things as a forward playing point guard at Florida State. Is he the top power forward prospect in the 2021 NBA Draft?
YouTube

THE 2021 NBA DRAFT IS UNDER ONE WEEK AWAY, and we’re continuing our positional rankings here at Sports Raid. We started with the draft’s thinnest position, the centers, and then pivoted to the one position in the draft without a top-10 prospect, the small forwards. Today we move to the spot in between: power forward.

NBA positions are nebulous these days, so let’s define what we mean by power forward. Think of a four as the leftover role in between the three and the five, a position defined by size and defensive role. A power forward is tall but not…


Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks are NBA champions. But is Giannis the deserving 2021 Playoff MVP?
Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks are NBA champions. But is Giannis the deserving 2021 Playoff MVP?
ABC // Xfinity

THE 2021 NBA FINALS HAVE WRAPPED, and the Milwaukee Bucks are NBA champions. Punctuated by 50 points from Giannis Antetokounmpo, the Bucks are champs for the first time in exactly 50 years: a perfect 50 for 50. Antetokounmpo was magnificent in the finale, with one of the greatest NBA-title-clinching performances of all time, rightfully earning the Bill Russell NBA Finals Most Valuable Player award — or, as we often call it, Finals MVP.

But the NBA Finals comprise just two weeks of an eternal two-month playoffs, and Finals MVP almost always goes to a guy on the championship team, usually…


Jalen Johnson has the size and athleticism of an elite wing, but is he the top small forward prospect in the 2021 NBA Draft?
Jalen Johnson has the size and athleticism of an elite wing, but is he the top small forward prospect in the 2021 NBA Draft?
YouTube

THE 2021 NBA DRAFT IS COMING, AND SOON. Even as the NBA Finals wrap up, attention is already turning toward next Thursday’s draft. It’s a top-heavy draft, with four names separating from the rest of the crowd, but it’s dealer’s choice from there, with draft boards and rankings veering all over the place. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and the 2021 NBA Draft is beautiful to every scout and analyst in its own unique way.

Every NBA team needs competent wings, and as teams play bigger and faster than ever, competent wings have become the most valuable…


Evan Mobley is the best center in the 2021 NBA Draft, and Alperen Sengun is getting all the hype, but could Kai Jones be a big sleeper?
Evan Mobley is the best center in the 2021 NBA Draft, and Alperen Sengun is getting all the hype, but could Kai Jones be a big sleeper?
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IT’S THE FINAL STRETCH BEFORE THE 2021 NBA DRAFT, and this year’s extended playoffs and Finals have left us precious little time to prepare for NBA Christmas. That means it’s time to put together our big board and final positional rankings, starting today with the always-evolving centers.

No position in basketball is changing more quickly. It used to feel like centers were going extinct, with Shaq and Hakeem ancient artifacts. Heck, we’re only four seasons removed from DeAndre Jordan making All-NBA! In the modern NBA, most of the best centers are stars for what they do outside the paint, not…


Evan Mobley is one of the most complete modern big man prospects in recent memory. Could he be a better NBA player than Cade Cunningham?
Evan Mobley is one of the most complete modern big man prospects in recent memory. Could he be a better NBA player than Cade Cunningham?
YouTube

THE 2021 NBA DRAFT IS TWO WEEKS AWAY, and Oklahoma State freshman phenom Cade Cunningham locked in as the #1 pick. That should come as no real surprise. Cunningham is a 6-foot-8 guard with a 7-foot wingspan, terrific passing ability, a good shot, and size and physicality reminiscent of big wing creators like Luka Doncic and Ben Simmons.

The Detroit Pistons own the #1 pick, and while there are rumors of the Pistons trading down or considering other options, Cunningham is still an overwhelming favorite to be drafted first. The Houston Rockets, Cleveland Cavaliers, and Toronto Raptors were also lottery…

Brandon Anderson

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