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Tonight's episode of the Business podcast on the Ringer podcast that was brought to you by Spotify, which has the best podcast listening experience around, you can change your speeds and make one point to guy.

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You can check out charts, biggest podcasts, best trending podcast, podcasts, separated by genres, whatever you need. Spotify has it. Listen to your podcast on Spotify were also brought to you by the Ring or Dotcom and the Ringer podcast network where I hope you're listening to the Ringer MBA show Mondays. Raja Bell, who is recently on this podcast on the latter, a show we did on Thursday, and Logan Murdoch breaking it down. We got the mismatch with Kevin O'Connor and Chris Vernon twice a week, as well as group chat, usually on Wednesday nights might be doing a little more, a little more reaction pods that there's an awesome game seven whoknows.

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So check out the Ringer NBA show and the responsibles where we did Caddyshack and pump up the volume last week. We have 40 year old Virgin coming on Monday night. So that's all happening. And coming up, we're still and I are going to break down a really surprisingly memorable. Playoff weekend of the bubble because of one man and his name, he goes by one name, he lost his last name. He's just one guy now. He's Loukia, that's it.

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He's like Beyonce. He doesn't have the last name. He's lost that. He's too good for a last name. That's all coming up. We've got a lot coming for you. First, our friends from Pearl Jam, James.

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All right, we're taping this Sunday night, it's looka day, it's time for our first playoff look at guys and look chromosomes there. I'm just going to start us off. I don't want to overreact, but I'm going to overreact. I think if somebody is truly great, there's some checkpoints they have to hit along the way in a formative stage. And I think this is one of the things that makes the NBA great, because you can go back, you can look at all these different areas.

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You can look at seventy five years of basketball and you can see all these different people that the players have who came in early and kind of came through when money was online early in their careers. And then you could look back and go, oh, yeah, I remember that. Oh, man, that was a good sign. And I think LeBron was a good recent example, right, when he had that twenty seven forty eight point game against Detroit.

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That was his fourth year in the league. I don't want to I don't think we can overstate this enough to stuff Luka is doing here in year two as a 21 year old where he is already this fully formed offensive superstar who goes toe to toe against this Clippers team today that we thought was the best defensive team in the league that we thought was the best team to go against him. He's playing on one leg. He we don't know if he's going to play the game time.

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He has to change how he plays subtly and all these different ways. He's a little slower. He's a little more deliberate. It's a little harder for him to get to his spots. Does it? Anyway, he's got no pausing and he comes through over and over and over and over again. And, you know, we see this happen in sports sometimes. Tiger Woods early in his career, we saw it with Mahomes early in his career. It starts to transcend the normal stuff.

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And I don't know if they're going to win this series or not. But, Rosillo, this is the kind of thing we need to see if this is going to be an all time player. And I really think if he does get injured, he's going to be I'm going to start us off. You don't want to Wade Boggs story to start this week now. All right. So I.

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I'm always a. All right, hold on, let me see, like I think early yanase and everybody get really excited about him was a fun video clip, but he wasn't a fully formed basketball player. And maybe sometimes I'm late, but I think also being cautious has prevented me at times from kind of freaking out about somebody. And then we're like, hey, remember, when is losing your mind about this guy? And then and then it didn't really happen.

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And that's that's always been kind of one of my rules. And even though I like Lukáš coming out, like, I don't know, you know, we still you wonder, despite the amazing resume overseas at such a young age, is it really going to translate that quickly? The fact that they won 33 games last year on that Mavs team that won. Right.

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For the year before was almost a sign like, wait, what's going on? Like, how are the Mavs winning even this many games? Because you just looked at the roster, you go, what's what is there to be excited about? They make the biggest trade. You start to see some of these pieces around him, whether it's the Hardaway contract, you're like, oh, that's abysmal.

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That's just a throw. And you're like, oh, I kind of like him. I think Maxi Kleber does a lot of really nice things out there.

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I mean, he hasn't been able to hit shot really in the playoffs so far. But for Luca to already be this incontrol in his first playoffs ever and yes, it's game four in the first round, I think guys like you and I will remember it forever. If the Clippers end up winning the series, which I still feel like they will, you know, we will get lost and all this stuff. But at least in the moment, for there to be no other option and there are even some moments, I'm like, are you seriously going to keep pulling up from thirty feet, man?

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Like there's a couple of possessions where it almost felt like he was trying to match Kawhi because by the way, Kawhi, every shot was great except for the one out of the time out at the end of Regulation Week, bruddah y. You're the guy that I trust to always make the right play I, I trust you to never know. Why are you trying to play for overtime. Yeah. Why are you the guy. Like there's so many stars right now.

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This guy is going to take a bad shot. Kawhi never does that. And yet here he is at the end of regulation with that and then yet he keeps it going. And then Morris of all people hits in overtime three and you go, can they really pull this off? So it's not just the insane stat line. It's not just that it's his fourth playoff game. It's that he closes it out without zingers against a team with Kawhi and Paul, George and Morris, at least physically, who can kind of match Donchak, at least from a size standpoint, three guys to throw at him and none of them can do anything with them.

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And when they know he's not really going to do anything except towards the end shoot, which is crazy because I had moments where I'm like, do you play them to pass now in the corner and not charge at him because he's going to burn?

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You remember that one Van Gundy was like that three to the right side and then he goes and that legendary he goes, that is a legendary kind of pass.

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And that's probably the best way to describe Luke. He feels like a legend already in his first playoffs.

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So, you know, who knows if they win the series, they lose whatever. I think if they win, the series will remember this game as a real moment that we'll be talking about. Fifteen years later, if they lose the series, maybe one had that kind of impact, but it'll be kind of the coming out party in a playoff stage. I think what impressed me so much about this one, because we've seen him do this before. He's had games like this.

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This isn't the first time I've watched him have a ridiculous that line and make big plays down the stretch. The fact that he was compromised, that he was clearly hurt, that he didn't have that same kind of explosive push off like he you know, sometimes he has that like 2011 Derrick Rose kind of talk when he's going to the basket so hard. He just couldn't do that anymore. And he kind of changed how he played. He was a little slower, a little deliberate, but he was still getting the shots and creating the shots.

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He wanted a friend of a friend of the Mavs sent to me today. He had seventy seven touches in that game. Think about that, like most times when we the 90s, like when we were doing those, we watch those games, there were games where guys, you know, where teams took like sixty five shots in a game. Loukas involved everywhere. And as you said, he's doing a Maxi Kleber, he's doing a Seth Curry who bounced around the league and has now really turned into, I think, a special role player, Trey Burke, who's on the Sixers.

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I'm going to say the Sixers might have needed him. It's just kind of this band aid team of role players that we always made fun of, the twenty seven Cavs. This is a two thousand seven Cavs type supporting cast, but it's suited to him. It makes sense for him. Everyone can shoot. The irony of poison gas going at is all it did was they just loaded up on shooters even more. They start Trey Burke and the Clippers, you know, whether they come out of the series or not.

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The thing that I would be concerned about is how easy it is for teams to getting it to the rim against them. This was their Achilles heel, right?

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You know, Beverly's part of this, but not that Beverley is going to slow down Donchak if Kawhi has struggling one on one moments with DOGIT, Beverley is with the size differential. No shot blocker.

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That, I guess is my thing is once you get by somebody, it's easy. You're at the rim. I just think he gets by everybody. So I don't I don't look at this is. Oh wow. I can't believe the Clippers can't stay in front of him. I don't know that I put it like a Pete Rose or Rose would just go side to side and you so quickly. I just I see somebody that understands every angle he understands.

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Right. As he's about to start his drive. Can I finish can I finish away from you enough to clear this or do I keep driving through and under the basket knowing that I'm going to throw this pass that a lot of other guys can't throw?

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And when they switched with Jackson on that on that last play and you're going what what's what's going on here?

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Like, why that was such a foul, I don't know. How are you doing? Because you have time. Because you have time. Yeah. You got two guys at home.

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Do you remember what Oklahoma City did at the end of regulation when Houston had the ball and they're ready to inbound? They started harden at half court. They basically put a wall. It was like a tight end, staying in with a left tackle just in front of Harden. And they go, you know, figure it out with somebody else and we'll go ahead and deal with that in Hardacre. And Harden just goes, all right, whatever. You blocked me, I'm done.

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I don't like to be hindsight double everybody. Guys, there's a lot of times where you see the full double and you get burned by someone else. But in that point, at that point, he's shooting.

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There's three and a half seconds left. You don't have time to get a shot. I think that the startling thing for me is how sophisticated offensively he is already. And the only experience I have just seeing a rookie come in like that was when Bird showed up at the Celtics. I was living in Boston. We're going to the games was like twenty three or twenty four. When he get to the Celtics.

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There is a couple of years older than Luke already, but he came in and he just had this higher advanced understanding and billfish called him Chodak because he was like his brain, just photographs, images and he knows what's happened ahead of time. And he saw magic come in two in the same season for the Lakers. And he was Lukas age as last year and comes in and has that same kind of feel for everything. But I don't feel like either of those guys really turned into the peak versions of themselves until the mid eighties.

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You know, and the part I'm looking at, I'm like he he's already making the right decisions all the time. So if you're going to be like, all right, what could you get better at? You really just say the three point shooting because everything else is already had. I don't I don't think he can get to a higher level of how he controls the game and creates for other guys stuff like that. It's the three point shot. It's the fact that he is not a dead eye shooter.

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Yeah. And in five years, if he is, he's going to be unstoppable. I don't know what happens.

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OK, so can I do the part, which I think is a very normal timeline for basically every NBA star. He's only in his second year. Yeah, we're not expected to beat the Clippers. And here we are after a game four where the stat line is, you know, when I pulled it up again, I go, you gotta be kidding me. Forty three points to thirty one for ten from three, which is good for him. He only took five free throws despite seventy seven touches, which seems insane.

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Seventeen boards. Thirteen assists. All right.

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It's by the way I love the boards. I love that he fucking rebounds. I love when my superstars get dirty down low and just take care of business. But Psagot. You're going to agree, but, you know, Janice is facing this right now not to get ahead to Janice too much, but if Janice were to lose in the second round, you know what? If he doesn't get out of the east with the regular season they had on paper, then it'll start to be a little bit, hey, wait, but it's going to play in the world.

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What do we have here?

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I mean, the L.A. fan base had Anthony Davis for one playoff game and started going, you know, this guy's never really done in the playoffs. But when you look at the stat lines, they're insane.

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They were never better than anybody, even when they beat Portland. And because I went back and looked at them like, wait, does he have any duds? Like, actually, he doesn't like they're just insane numbers. So Loka is too young and in the comp to harden, you know, I'd seen some people do. Hey, how come Harden catches all this shit and there are so many similarities in their style of play and you're like, OK, but Harden has been around for a really long time now.

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It's ten years older than that. And Harden has the Clippers come back where he's watching. He has a Golden State loss where he was at the end of the bench lying down. And people like, what's the deal with this guy? He has that elimination game against the Spurs where people thought he had a concussion because he was just out of it. Totally. And you're like is I think I still think he did OK. He shot over a million when they were up three two against the Golden State Warriors.

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And then he has the game at home where Curry goes scoreless in the first half and comes back what I think is the greatest Steph Curry game ever. And even though Harden's final line is really good, you go, where are you?

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If you're remember, you mentioned the 2012 finals are now, I don't think that that's fair, because if you look at the way he's older than he's older than Luca and that finals. Yeah, but he's not even close to being. He's mentioning it. I didn't want to beat up, but this isn't an anti harden thing. Know, what I'm saying is, is that Harden has a resume of playoff stuff where Luca could be the exact same player.

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Luca will be a better version of what we've just seen you just understanding and just different things. It doesn't mean numbers. The numbers aren't going to necessarily get better. He will become a better player, but then we will find things if he doesn't have playoff success to beat up on him the same way when it was LeBron needs to go to Olajuwon post up camp, which now seems stupid ten years later before you want a ring. And then he comes back and he's doing post catches.

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He didnt have any postmus and he had post touches and he would kick it out to other people. But LeBron never became this terrific post actual like post move McKale type stuff. I mean, nobody does that stuff anymore. So it's not an anti Loukia thing. It's just the reality of how we treat our stars. Yeah, but here's the thing. You mentioned LeBron. I don't feel like LeBron got to the level as an all around basketball player, even though he'd already won.

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MVP is in Cleveland, where he reached another level that second year in Miami. And I think those those second and third Miami years, something something changed. And he just kind of figured out exactly who was on a basketball court, how to take the best advantage of his teammates. He figured out efficiency stuff that he hadn't really, you know, and then as the moment got bigger, he just could solve stuff over and over and over again. And I think that's the Loukia thing, how young he is.

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To get these things out, you already think he's figured all these things just to know, to watch him have the right answers a lot of the time here at the ages, that I don't think we can talk extensively enough about how rare that is. And you're comparing to Harden, I think, statistically, and what he does for the teams. Yeah, but I just think from a talent impact standpoint, in his age, he has a chance to be one of the all time guys like all time I'm talking LeBron Bird Magic, Oscar Robertson, Kareem Wilt, all these guys, because the stuff he's doing has no parallel to anything we've seen in the last 20 years.

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And it is not hyperbole. It is not an overstatement. I felt this way the entire time. I felt this way when he was in Europe, when he's 18 years old, playing against a bunch of 30 year old dudes who were smoking after games, just dusting them. I just think he's really special. And it's weird that, you know, we do this with Mahomes and the NFL. It's like everyone kind of mahomes at a point where everybody just kind of looked at each other and said.

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Wow, this guy is really different, this guy is special and and I think Luke is there. And if it took today's game for people to finally realize that, great.

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But, you know, he had a couple of moments against Kawhi and quiting guard him a lot in this game. But near the end, like, all right, guys, that got this. And I'm not saying he dusted Kawhi. But I was trying quite has been unbelievable in the bubble, this is like full fledged, you know, impact Kawhi everything you'd want. Luka was like kind of getting the shots he wanted. And Kawhi was like gave a shit.

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And I've never seen anybody do that to him. That's saying he destroyed them. But no, because he was like really trying and Luca was still getting his spots. There were there are two players in the playoffs that I've enjoyed more than any. And actually one was was Embiid where it looked like he didn't have Kemba looked like he lost him on the baseline and then he just turned and blocked him and I thought you killed him for a second. Right.

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It was a little reminder of when I'm big and you're really small I can recover.

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But it was Loukia at the end of was a game one when they lost but he was just trying to drive. Yeah. Presidio's to Sternau at the end of game one. Loukia just decided, you know what, I don't think any of these guys actually can stay in front of me like none of them. So I'm just going to keep going. And he threw a shoulder into the center of his chest and Kozelek recoiled off of Loka. And you just not used to seeing that.

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Now, Loukia did have a drive on Kawhi or Kawhi, so good where he's upright, his chest is out and he was still reaching at the ball in a completely controlled way, trying to flick it away from Donchak while he's also, you know, how hard it is to reach it. Try to flick the ball away yet still have really good position and Kawhi held up. Luca couldn't get them on that one and then Luca took a step back and that's just the win.

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He missed the shot. But you could just tell, like, whatever the matchup is, that's a win there. But I'm I hope you understand, though, when I when I point out the hard and stuff that's not to bring up it's just the predictability of how the rules work for any superstar. So I think they're very similar. Right. But for all the love that we have for him and it's all none of this is overstating it. I'm with you on that part of it.

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But there's very little negativity because this is his first playoff round. This is there's.

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Yeah, yeah. I think we've watched for a long time.

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Most of these guys have they're against these guys are going to have negative playoff outcomes where, you know, the longer you're in this league, the math just works kind of against you because very few guys at the end of it get to be the champ.

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I thought I was the best player I watched over the past week, just his all around play. I thought the game three that he played on Friday night was just absolutely ridiculous. It was actually the first time I felt like he was one hundred percent healthy and a couple of years ago, there's no like his legs not dragging at all. He's got his full explosiveness is in complete command. He's doing it every once. He has a couple of wild plays every game.

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And I just I one of the topics I had written down before this game was why do we keep forgetting that Kawhi is the best playoff guy in the league? Because there's two seasons, as we've talked about a million times. There's regular season playoffs. I just Kawhi is the guy I would want first if I'm trying to win the title right now of all these available guys, it was interesting to watch Luka just go toe to toe with him. And, you know, the biggest advantage they had today was I don't know what's happened to Paul George and I don't know if this is a funk or if he's hurt.

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But not only is he terrible, he's such hurt, he may he has to be because he had ice on his shoulder last two games.

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What are the possible explanations? He's hurt or he's just in a complete funk. But this guy was the number three candidate for MVP last year. He finished in third place. And if you watch this game, you would have thought Marcus Morris was Paul George. You thought, oh, Marcus Morris is the big acquisition. It's actually Paul George, the guy who's two for 14, taking some of the worst shots of all time and completely disappearing on the other end.

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I don't. What do you think's happened to him?

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All right. You know, you're talking to here, right? I know you say. What do you think? How do you explain the last week?

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It's Paul. George. I mean, even this is bad. I mean, he's obviously going to go out for 30 at some point because he's just do I thought it might happen in game four because he was so bad in game three. And I'll keep track of how many points he had. Zero, I think, in one half of one of the games in the series. And I'll look at halftime the big OK, let's see what happens, because he had nine points in the third quarter of the game.

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I believe that he had zero at the half or maybe was two. Doesn't matter. Here's a problem for Paul. George is Marcus Morris thinks he's better than Paul George. And he has been for the last. He has been right.

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If Mark if Paul George had Marcus Morris attitude, he'd be the best player in the league.

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But he's Marcus Morris was the second or third best player, the Clippers the past week. Guess who was the top three?

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Post-box was really good today, too, by the way, Zubac and the way really it is even mediocre today. They win by ten.

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Yeah. He's so bad right now that you can tell he's like, all right, I'm going to be you can actually see his energy on specific possessions where he's like, I haven't done shit like six minutes, I need one, I need it, I'm going to, I'm going to get one. And then he hit a layup on a drive where the defender kind of lost him. And then he went right back at him and didn't make the layup and then it was done.

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Now, Dallas has done a bunch of things were defensively. They've had a small guy on Morris. And Morris is like, look, I'm going to try to post up a South Korean a switch. I'm going to if this is the actual defensive assignment, not even a switch. I'm going to post this guy up. And as you and I both know, when you watch Marcus Morris over a long period of time, you almost want him to shoot a little bit less, even though we realize he's a pretty talented guy.

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But what is happening to Paul, George, at least, is Morris is awaiting for Paul. George Morris isn't thinking I need to get it back to Paul. George Morris is like, I'm going to get mine. And so that makes somebody who I just think George is a very apprehensive player. He just is when things really matter, he's apprehensive. I've already mentioned the resume a million times. And it's kind of funny to see, at least for me, because I've done these segments with you.

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I did this other thing about thirty and thirteen in my podcast this week where there's a group of really good players in the league. If they had third in a playoff game, you wouldn't be surprised, but you also wouldn't be surprised if they had thirteen. And Paul George is the number one pick. And now more and more people are starting to notice this as if it's new and it's not new. So I the quick answers, I don't think anything's really happened to him other than this is kind of who he is.

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But he's he's due to go off. He has to at some point because that's usually what he ends up doing. They should be ashamed.

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The cooker's, honestly, they should be ashamed and embarrassed, the series is two to four zingers got thrown out of a game.

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Yeah, right. Loukia sprained ankle and missed. What did he miss? Half of game three or he they brought back in the last 40.

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Yeah, it wasn't it wasn't even close. Yeah. Loka no pausing yesterday. And look on a sprained ankle. The series should be at least three when they should honestly be ashamed, not to mention they had the ball in regulation. Twenty five seconds left, called the time out, came out at a time out with the strategy of Kawhi. Kill as much of the clock as you can. One, two, three, terrible twenty three footer and maybe the ball, maybe the buzzer will end, it will go to Ottey.

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It's like, what are you doing? I can get whatever whatever shot he wants, whenever he wants. Just get a good shot. Why are you playing scared?

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You were doubling them at times. I don't know if that was part of the concern, but he did go he went so late. Did he really give himself a chance?

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Look, they have today, other than Lucka, do you think the Clippers had the next five best players in the game? Is you would you be Seth Curry versus Marcus Morris is probably a wash. I mean, Kawhi was so good down the stretch when it looked like they were going to lose the game. It's it's like I don't have the scores in front of me here if I want to go back.

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No, they were down game long. They were down five on defense with like a minute and a half left.

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And it was 116 in 09. It was 119. It was 119, 111 when Jackson made that save where it was the perfect pass to Kawhi who catches it shoots the three that made it one 1914. So that whole stretch, you're going all right, Dallas is still going to win this game.

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And Kawhi is just so I wasn't saying that because I watched Dallas blow leads like that all season, as have all the other Mavs fans. I guarantee there wasn't a Masvingo and we got this. It's all good.

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I want to take a quick break, then we'll come back, talk more quick break to talk about our special Ultimate Hoops Ringer contest on Fandor. You can keep playing fantasy basketball throughout the playoffs. Every day we're going to have a playoff game on the ultimate hoops contest, five 5000 feet per contest. If you win, you get a ticket to the leaderboard series during the NBA finals. We're all the winners will compete for a share of fifty cash or swag and to be deemed the sole survivor of the ultimate hoops ring.

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The great thing about this is every day is a new chance to win the day and advance to the finals. There's still time to enter contests for a chance to get into that leaderboard series. What are you waiting for? Learn more. Enter at Fandor Dotcom Slash Hoops Ringer.

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Age and location restrictions do apply just quickly on this clip's.

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This whole clip's Mavs thing, there is a point this morning. We were looking at maybe not even a Game six in any series, round one, right, because you're thinking like, all right, OK, is basically one play away from being down three. Nothing in that series. Utah, Denver. It looks like Utah could win that. And five, just going down the line, you're like, oh, man, what would they do? Would they have to move all these up?

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And now we have a lot more stuff in play. But with this clip's Mavs thing, is there anything you're seeing from the clips that may have has made you change your mind that they're the team to beat? Because for me, I guess the only thing the only thing I noticed over the first four games. Versus a team like the Mavs, the Mavs to me seem like a true team, they're not very good, but they're a true team.

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They're both they're almost built like a high school team like Lucas, the Jimmy Chitwood. Poor Zangas is the big center. They got to keep them involved. Something nice for Hoosiers when they have a bunch of guys with chips on their shoulders who other teams have given up on. You know, and you could see from the reaction when Lucas made the shot, you know, if you're grading like, oh, I'm studying the team chemistry just from reactions like you could tell that that Mavs team is all in on each other, like they ripped that team is really close.

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They love each other. The clips to me still seem like a bunch of hired guns. They have a pickup basketball kind of vibe to them. And I think some of it has to do it. They don't have a true kind of creator other than Kawhi. It's a lot of one on one stuff. It's a lot of people who weren't there years ago. But when I watch them, it still feels to me a little like how the Celtics felt until they finally started to get those scars in the playoffs or the Celtics.

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All the guys were new and it just felt like a pickup team the whole year, even though they're doing well. It was just like these guys aren't used to each other. And then they had a couple of seven game series and they kind of started to get used to each other and then they kind of took off. Do you feel that with the clips or am I overanalyzing it? I feel like look at doesn't make that shot that you're talking about, team that's up three one and still probably the better looking team of any of the teams in the West.

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So that's why I'm not I'm not I think Beverly not being there is a lot for them emotionally because George is a dud emotionally, OK? Kawhi is not going to go as a robot.

[00:27:23]

Yeah, he's just he's just not not programmed that way. Zubac it's not going to be that guy. Morris is probably the most emotional player out there. Even Lou is a little laid back. So they need Beverley back there. They do. And you can tell Doc tonight how much we want this team to be the team in the West, at least for those of us to pick them. The guard situation, I mean, it's crazy you're in the playoffs and this is the challenge of a shutdown for four months and then figuring this out on the fly and the fact that the Clippers this wasn't by design.

[00:27:53]

I remember going on with Cowherd because, you know, they did a really good job arresting all these different guys. And honestly, I go, yeah, but you know what? I think if they were being totally honest with you, they would tell you that it would have been nice to have 20 straight games with a tight rotation and knowing what you were going to do for the most part. And they've already changed their guard rotation a couple of times in this where they bailed on Reggie Jackson.

[00:28:10]

He had a game or I think he played like 20 minutes. The first 18 minutes, the first half didn't have an assist. And, you know, Reggie Jackson going to have some moments. And I think the Hustle plays for him or the important ones now because it's like, hey, man, if you got Kawhi and even this version of Paul, George and Morris and Lou Williams and Zubac cleaning up everything in Mantra's coming back, which is another part of this where they got rid of him a little bit today.

[00:28:31]

Reggie Jackson doesn't need to drive into everybody to see if his layups are working OK, and he's hit some threes, so that's help. But they Shamin, who we loved after Tobias Harris trade, he almost forgot he was on the team. So he got he got sick and now they're still trying to bring him back 100 percent.

[00:28:48]

Right. But he just he doesn't look like the same guy. So it's still a confusing group. So I'm not saying you're necessarily wrong, but I. I think Van Gundy made a really good point where he goes, their energy is just off and it kind of goes back to that doctor.

[00:28:59]

That's why I brought it up right where Doc Rivers, the first time he said it when, you know, I was in Boston and I said, you know, that we were interviewing before a game and the other team was missing one of their big guys because, you know, I'd rather be out there. I thought it was I thought he was lying. But he's consistently always said this because he goes as soon as the other team doesn't have one of their main guys, your team relaxes, your team relaxes.

[00:29:21]

And whether that was Donchak coming back into the game, he was like, yeah, that's fine if he's coming back or when Donchak had some fouls, he's like, I don't care. I don't like to get distracted to chase fouls or just not being there today. It wasn't the case. They were down twenty one points. So whatever it was, they were up for it, but they relaxed and then they relaxed. Van Gundy absolutely pointed it out.

[00:29:41]

And that's what's so great about Van Gundy, is that he's pointing out just stuff other people don't pick up on. He goes right now their energy is a problem. And then you could see Doc went really small to switch defensively, but he also was doing something where he had five guys that could score out there, which I went, hey, I know they lost, but I like that he tried it.

[00:29:58]

I think one of the things I've noticed with them, I don't really know how to describe Kawhi and Paul George as a tandem, and I don't think they have found their identity as a twosome yet. You think of like twosomes over the years. Right. And you could feel it in the dark. The last dance when him and Pippen finally became a twosome in the year before they won the first title. But they all of a sudden they just kind of took off.

[00:30:21]

And collectively, they were almost more powerful than these two separate entities. And you've seen that over the years. Sometimes you see when when stars get thrown together. I remember Davis and Boogie Cousins before Boogie got hurt. They just kind of had something together, it was like, oh, this is this is cool, I think Tatum and Brown have something together, you know, and you go down the line like LeBron joined Wade in Miami in 2010, the supporting cast was bad.

[00:30:47]

They they definitely had they developed a chemistry over the course of that year and they would have the al loops and stuff and there was like a connection with them, even though they didn't win the title. I guess my question is. What's the connection with Kalayaan Paul George, who, if you were to describe it, you're like, what is this? Because quite clearly the alpha dog I think is the best player in the league. So does Paul George know, like I'm Pépin, I'm going to fill in the blanks, or does he think it's the two of us together?

[00:31:19]

It's kind of like they're on the court together, but they don't interact. And I think it's weird.

[00:31:25]

Ross from Friends would be the alpha dog if you were teammates with Paul George.

[00:31:28]

OK, so I I'm going through my head trying to think of another top tier player where Paul George would be the Alpha and it just I don't believe that exist. And that's part of the problem.

[00:31:41]

What's his role in this team? What would you learn from Paul George if Paul George called you and he's like, Hey, Ryan, can you help me figure this out? I'm struggling. What would you tell him?

[00:31:51]

You know how when they send traps. Damian Lillard and it just means now CJ is going to go four on three and make a really good decision or have a nice look. That's what Paul George should be doing here. And there are moments where they were doubling, I don't know the total number, maybe it wasn't that many, but I would look for what Paul George was doing and he watches. He just watches and you go, wait a minute man.

[00:32:10]

If they're sitting to Kawhi now, it's on like you should be able to get past all these guys anyway. Again, Maxi Kleber stays upright. But I mean, you're Paul George. Are you kidding? So it is. It's just a mental thing with him that I don't I don't know that this is really that hard. You know, I don't want to keep doing it over and over again.

[00:32:29]

But he needs at least if you can't get it going and hit some open shots or, you know, just I would hope to get him going to transition a little bit, you know, really, I would.

[00:32:39]

So that was my biggest. Don't if I if I'm the clips, I would play faster because I think they have so many athletic advantages. You got a team out there that's got Seth Curry and Trey Burke and, you know, Maxi Kleber and you have better athletes across the board. Why are you walking it down? If I'm Dallas, I'm like, this is great. Go half court on us, this is awesome, because we're just going to shoot threes.

[00:33:02]

The other in any way we're going to shoot more threes in you. And now that you're slowing down, we don't have to worry about fast break. Now we can play Steph Curry and Trey Burke together. We could do we can play bourbon. Please slow down. And that that was I was confused by that. I was also confused by over and over again as Dallas was pulling away in the fourth quarter, why Lou Williams was on Tim Hardaway and Lukas just like, oh, cool.

[00:33:23]

I'm just going to keep getting a switch and I'm going to keep torching Lou Williams. And and Doc was just sitting there for three minutes doing nothing. There's I just don't feel like as talented as this Clippers team is, sometimes they do things where I'm like, wow, you're the team that's the favorite to win the title. Yeah, but why are you such a work in progress?

[00:33:41]

Yeah, but because they didn't play. They really there's no vision of this team. That and between Lou being gone and then coming back, Montrezl being gone, coming back, Beverley being like I'm just starting to repeat myself. But you're right that they have to have the continuity that you would want them to have. But I also think Lou Williams is in the game because his scoring per minutes, it was off the charts.

[00:34:03]

I get it. But move move him to Kleber and at least make somebody else set the pick for Luke. And if if it's Kleber, great. Then all right. Then you shoot the Tim Hardaway thing. It was just over. Anyway, I do want to mention we were robbed that that Lucas shot didn't happen. This is the first time I really miss Fance. Lucas made that game winner that that didn't happen in Dallas in a game four. I almost feel like the fans would have charged the court.

[00:34:28]

I feel bad for the Dallas fans.

[00:34:29]

I mean, Dallas, they win the lottery literally with this guy. He falls in our lap. Three teams pass on him is still the dumbest thing that's happened this century for NBA purposes. And I know it's they've got to be so happy, but to be distant from it, to not be able to actually see it in person, it's got to be a bummer. And would you have a rapid fire look at questions? Would you take the entire Celtics roster for him right now?

[00:34:56]

Now, would you move back to Boston if he ended up on the Celtics next year? Yeah. Yeah, that be the one thing that could get me back, somebody, Jason Gay asked me if you know Luka and poor Zinga or Tatum and Brown.

[00:35:12]

He was like people who take looka prisoners, but Tatum and Brown is a little closer. My thought was like I would take Lukan and anybody against so-and-so and a second person. Right, because at Luca's age and really injury is the only thing that's going to stop and you just get him for the next 15 years. And we know like to me, it's like him and Yoni's specifically. We never have to worry about these guys competitively. There's never going to be an embedded situation like the embed situation we just watched over the last week where you're just gone, man.

[00:35:43]

He looks exhausted. Twenty four minutes into this playoff game or. Oh, man, I wish this guy would work on this. Like, those are two guys who never have to worry about. I want to talk about Philly. All right, let's do it. Is this can you remember being more disappointed? In the 21st century. In a basketball team. OK, I didn't know we were just how it basketball is racking my brain in a basketball team for what the ceiling was versus how it played out over a 15 month span.

[00:36:19]

Maybe that Lakers team that load it up with Howard, Gasol, Nash, Kobe. But it wasn't it wasn't a four year soap opera, five year soap operas, what this feels like. So it was a shorter disappointment than what we have here with the Sixers. But we've basically done the same six or segment for about three years is what it feels like.

[00:36:38]

Well, we're going to do another version of it right after this break. Let's talk about the Home Depot we're decorating.

[00:36:44]

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[00:37:12]

Plus, for a limited time, you can save even more on the stores you love when you use code. Bill Simmons one zero eight. Check out Bill Simmons ten restore about the awesome card machine from the Home Depot. They can't be notified when it was coming. It arrived right when they said it would and it's been awesome. Here's some great news. The Home Depot offers free delivery on select items. Forty five dollars more now for a limited time.

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[00:37:50]

So here's how we're going to mix the Sixer segment up this year. I assume, well, Brett Brown is going to get fired. I assume Elton Brand will get reassigned to a different role in the organization. The Sixers call Ryan Russell and they say, hey, man, we're hiring as a GM. Figure this out for us. Here's what you got. How long's my contract for say yes? Well, first, you said in five years, their payroll, the next next three years, one forty seven point four one forty seven point three, one thirty eight.

[00:38:19]

So three years from now, there are 20 million over the cap. At least they have simmons' five years left one sixty nine. Tobias Harris four years left one forty seven point two Embiid left four years one twenty point two Horford three years eighty one and Richardson two years twenty two point five. Horford and Harris are untradeable Richardson's probably tradable but what are you going to get and then it becomes a if we blow this up. We probably have to blow it up by trading Simmons or Embiid or you talk yourself into.

[00:38:57]

No, no we're going to get a better coach. It'll be a better coach. You'll be able to figure this out. What would you do? What would be your first move? Well, I tell the staff I go, I probably am not in the position here of wanting to make ourselves worse, to move off of Harrison Horford. I mean Horford is declining that third year has some really weird guarantees that probably aren't super likely. So the total number on that in the third year maybe is a little bit more palatable for a team, but it just looked pretty bad.

[00:39:23]

I mean there are moments where we saw him slowing down with Boston, although we appreciated what he was. But that's why Boston was like, all right, go ahead. When it became that.

[00:39:30]

No, I do I do feel bad that he's completely out of position on this team. I mean, I think he's on the right kind of team where he's a stretch five. He could be useful, I think not for twenty seven million, but I don't I just think this is the worst case scenario situation for him. It has been from day one.

[00:39:46]

Harris might be I know John Wall is up there, you know, some of the the Westbrook stuff. Right. At least if I were trading for Westbrook I think I would know where I was getting, even though his 47 million dollar number three years from now is pretty scary. But I think I'd rather have him at forty seven million than Tobias Harris at thirty nine million four years from now.

[00:40:06]

A Harris who is is one. Would you agree that Tobias Harris deal right now is one of the five least tradable contracts in the NBA?

[00:40:12]

Oh, I think they have two of the top five I think while so while is forty one point three, forty four point three and forty seven point four, he's number one.

[00:40:22]

I think Blake Griffin at thirty six point eight thirty nine, not knowing if he's going to be able to play basketball at a high level anymore, is in the top five. But I think you could make a case, Harris, too, and I think Horford is probably three, honestly, unless you want to say Kevin Love for 30 million a year.

[00:40:39]

Yeah, Kevin Love is three years a 30. Is that what we're talking about? Kevin Love's thirty one point three thirty one point three, twenty eight point nine.

[00:40:46]

So I think he's in the top five Wiggins contract. I like I can't wait to see what it looks like now, though. With him, there's a chance that it looks a little bit better. But three years, ninety four point six million on paper right now it looks terrible. Yeah. Forty seven million for Westbrook in three years. Will that be in two years. Because he's got three years plus one. Thirty two. John Walsh. Forty seven million in two years.

[00:41:09]

You know when I was doing these because you and I were texting each other about this, can I just shut out the Chicago Bulls. Yeah. Who gave Felicio. Cristiano Felicio. It's Christian Felicio. Excuse me. Yeah, they gave him four years and thirty two million after after not even one hundred games. He played ten minutes per game his rookie year and then fifteen minutes per game in his second year and they were like here's thirty two million guaranteed.

[00:41:34]

That's all believable. So here's your best chance to get rid of Harris.

[00:41:39]

A team that's delusional and thinks they're one scoring forward away and looks at it as, oh, it's Harris, one of those years is gone.

[00:41:47]

So it's basically like we're signing him as a free agent for four years. One forty seven. It's a little high. But like if you're Chicago and I don't think they would do this, but Chicago could be like, cool, we'll trade you. Otto Porter's expiring and Louisiana is expiring. You basically get a reset with that Harris money with these huge expiring. And we'll take on Harris. He's great. I'm not saying they would do that, but that's really their only option to get rid of that contract.

[00:42:11]

Watford is tougher because the Horford.

[00:42:14]

What is it like with the third year guarantee on it? I think it's easier to digest now. You could do.

[00:42:22]

I was talking to some people about this, right, because we have the homework assignment was the first thing I wouldn't do is I wouldn't attach a million draft picks just to get rid of the guys. So I don't want to end up in draft pick hell a great because now because those draft picks, if you trust yourself and if you actually are named a GM, no, GM goes, you know, I suck at doing drafting, I suck at it.

[00:42:40]

So I should just trade all these picks because I just I just don't get it. Whatever it is about these college kids, I just don't see it. You know, no one does that. So I wouldn't want to trade all of these potential, at least a roll guy, a rotation player that's a lot cheaper than me having to beg my seventh choice to come off the bench and pay him way too much a free agency anyway, even though I don't have any cap space.

[00:43:00]

All right. So then it comes down to Simmons and Embiid thing.

[00:43:04]

Even though I like Embiid more as the player and the talent, I would probably look to trade him because I am so tired of watching him be exhausted in the second half of all of these games. And look man, I think we both really like them. But the first three games of this series points per game in the first half, nineteen in the second half. Eleven field goal percentage. Fifty nine percent in the first half. Second half. Twenty nine percent from three oh four four in the second half to four making a couple rebounds, cut from nine in the first half to four in the second half.

[00:43:36]

He doesn't show and he, and he also he, he, he jumped his stats in garbage time in game four. He had ten points when the game was over. That's why I didn't. You said eleven the game in the second half. But it's really it was really like seven and then he made a couple of shots when. Exactly. Exactly. So yeah.

[00:43:50]

The weakest thirty and ten I've ever watched in my life.

[00:43:55]

That's good. No, it's a good feeling. Completely. I was embarrassed for him. I said I'm embarrassed for him. He was completely out of shape. He looked exhausted. He is some of the stuff he did on defense in game three was astonishing. And for whatever reason, I thought the announcers were way too favorable toward Philly. I was honestly embarrassed for Embiid. It's it's like they singlehanded got Kemba Walker going in that series. Kemba was like I don't really have my legs back and I'm I feel well here's what will help.

[00:44:23]

Take take 50 wide open jumpers. You're Oh I'm back. Hey I remember what I'm doing and partly it's because and beats just under the basket hanging out. I was embarrassed for him. He's the guy I would trade. I would come in and be like we have to trade Embiid this is only going to get worse. I don't think he takes this seriously enough but I wouldn't, I wouldn't tell anyone of my staff we have to trade Embiid I would say hey call your second and third level guys and see what we can get from Embiid.

[00:44:49]

Yeah but here's what's going to happen. Like I could sit here and say Hey you know what makes sense on paper. What I wouldn't do is make my team worse talent wise just to split these guys up because here's what's going to happen.

[00:45:01]

The new coach is going to come in and the new coach is going to say I can fix these guys and there's a really good chance you're going to give the new coach one year to figure this thing out. I wouldn't want anyone to ever think I have to trade either these guys, but I don't know. Did you do the exercise of trying to have a realistic conversation about what could happen with either of these players?

[00:45:19]

Because I do think you would obviously get something real for either one of them. But would you then be trading the best player for two lesser pieces and then really think you're a better basketball team? I would not trade Simmons. I think Simmons is borderline special. And if he had been in this series and Embiid was the one who got hurt, there's no way the Celtics sweet. They would have been one of those games eight, I think, if anything, we learned people take cement's as frustrating as he is and the holes are, you know, it's like goes back to my old 90 tent there.

[00:45:49]

That about Westbrooke, where somebody is 90 percent good and the 10 percent is really glaring with certain guys. With Simmons, that's probably like 13, 15 percent. But it's so glaring that you end up getting frustrated the whole day against him. He was the only guy on that team who could create a shot. He was the best defender on that team by far. He's the most competitive guy in that team. And I just think they would have put up a bigger fight.

[00:46:12]

I was embarrassed for them. I don't know whether they were quitting on their coach or what happened. But as a Celtics fan who loves the Celtics, we lose Hayward in game one. I was never worried. I bet on the Celtics every game this year.

[00:46:25]

I was never worried. I always thought the Sixers were going to roll over. I thought they were terribly coached. And even you see Brett Brown today is like, you know, I'm God. I don't care what the numbers say about Embiid and Horford together I'm running it back I want to see if I can get them to minus 15 again together like he just didn't get it and and to think like Shake Milton the team was shake Milton was going to be the answer.

[00:46:48]

The fucking guy can't throw an entry pass so I partly felt bad for Embiid because nobody could get him for the ball. But on the other hand he was so fucking tired it didn't matter anyway because he, you know all he had to do is run back and forth a few times. By the third quarter he was dead. And I just think it's such when you think of where they were before the Harris trade and it all goes back to the Harris trade.

[00:47:11]

The hairspray, they gave up a bunch of assets for this guy. It's a weird piece. It doesn't help them get even passed around to then they panic and overpay him and give him one of the worst contracts over the last five years. And it's like you make the mistake and then you compound the mistake by making the second mistake. That's when teams get fucked up for five years and this team is now fucked up. I don't think the process was a failure because a lot of the moves they all got in a position of where they were, you know, January 20, 18, where it's like you have assets, you have Jimmy Butler, Embiid and Simmons, you have a chance.

[00:47:48]

But now, looking back, it's like this is probably the worst way the process could have played out. They want to round one series. This is a seven year odyssey now. They've never made it at around 10, so they just got swept. All right, let me push back a little from Philly and go, yeah, but you already answered, like, why are you beating up on my team when we you just said how special Simmons is now.

[00:48:11]

And I think for those of us that were like, what's his deal? A lot of people, those people have come around. It's something we touched on even last week. So if he's not playing and you don't like the coach, I mean, people are losing it about like everybody should be fired, get ownership out of here. Well, that's not going to happen. I get the job almost exactly three years ago, so I don't know if he could, like you said, does he get reassigned?

[00:48:32]

He was OK. He'll be bumped up like eight months later. You know, what they should do is the new GM should say, hey, where you go? Take the Sacramento job and then trade me, Baguley and Darren Fox for Simmons' or Embiid. And then go let's let's get this out there and start, because I did start trying to think of like what two for once would you do Embiid for Sabonis and Oladipo. And then run it back with Simmons, so, you know, I wouldn't do I would do Embiid for Sabonis and Oladipo before the other GM who called me finished the DPO in Oladipo he was like Hey do you want to do Sabonis for or Simmons first a bonus in order to get there.

[00:49:10]

Yes, yes I would if he was saying Olden Polynice would you then regret.

[00:49:15]

Maybe I should wait till the end of the. But yeah I was thinking like I would even do Embiid for Wendell Carter and come on come on marketed and there pick Carter marketing their pick for Embiid I would I would call it into the league right now.

[00:49:30]

I would do it because there is a part of me that if I'm from Philly and I love the Sixers and I'm watching this version of a team out there with arguably the worst backcourt of any team in the playoffs. You're going, oh, wait a minute, why are you guys all said Simmons is really good and everyone's kind of in on Simmons now we back to the fundamental problems of what we think and beat and Simmons are. We've been over those numbers.

[00:49:52]

Yeah, we don't need to litigate that again, but we do have to litigate this. As we know, agents. Can start controlling destinies if they decide they don't like a situation, Klutch is involved with Mr. Simmons. What if Klutch says this Uzma Caruso? Well, what if they say this sucks, you got to trade them? He wants his own team, he wants to go to New Orleans and play with Zion, he wants to go to Phoenix.

[00:50:22]

Devin Booker, he wants to play with LeBron. He wants to play LeBron and Davis. Well, they don't have any of the trade. We don't care. Make it happen. We've seen agents do this. Simmons is under this long contract is no leverage at all, but who knows? So I personally think that indeed will be the move, whether they make it this this offseason or a year from now. But I think that has to be the move because you can't run you're going to lose three years here with these five guys or four guys, I guess.

[00:50:52]

Even though are we on the same, but it's a really great reminder of all the times like this is one thing that probably going to happen. You go beware of the unexpected pissed off player that has the juice to pull it off. Beware the grenades. It's a great the aging grenade where it's like, oh, wait, you're. Oh, so this is done. You're breaking up with me. Yeah, but I don't think it's a great point.

[00:51:14]

It's I'm still talking, you know, we're done. We're you have to treat us now. The rules are only with a year left. Yeah. We changed it. We all know he's doing he's doing an interview with Rachel Nichols about how it as back. Oh God. We got rid of. Why is Rachel Nichols in the building? My name is Rachel Nichols. I'm here with Ben Smith. She said she was doing a sit down with Raul Neto on his upbringing.

[00:51:38]

What double crossed us. Yeah, I'm here with Ben Simmons. Ben, it's been a trying five years for you. Why do you need a change of scenery so badly? Well, you know, Rachel, I just want to I just want to play basketball and be happy. Why is he. I just want to be happy. What's going on right now with you? Ben Simmons. I'm Ben. I'm basically Bill Simmons is bits of it.

[00:52:00]

OK, all right. I just want to be happy, Rachel. You know, I just think everybody needs a change of scenery. We had a great run in Philly. Pause, nobody mentions of it. You never got around to wasn't really that great, but, you know, I think it's maybe time to move on. Then what does he do if he says that I just want to do a ritual follow up, like, OK, how?

[00:52:25]

How great of investment is Los Angeles real estate right now, just out of nowhere to it? He's probably on Redfin right now looking at different neighborhoods, trying to figure out where he's going to live. Calabasas, a lot of big backyards, a lot of space, could fit a lot of friends here. I think they should shop and. I don't think they will. I think they will talk themselves into we can make this work for one year.

[00:52:49]

Here's the case for Airbnb to shop. He's had major injuries. He doesn't seem to fully value being an incredible shape, doesn't seem to understand it yet, the rest of us. Well, the risk is he figures it out. And has this awesome year where he just runs through the leagues like a like a knife going through butter and you're like, oh my God, we traded this guy, he's the best player in the league. I just think you are who you are by your mid 20s.

[00:53:18]

And he's in his mid 20s. I just think this is who he is. And I really like him. I wish he wasn't like this. I really enjoy watching him play basketball, but I was never concerned about him. And then they're going like, oh, you got to feed him. Beed more in this Boston series. I'm like, great, guess what? Everyone else is going to stand around as he takes ten seconds deciding what to do and probably ends up with like a 15 footer when he's seven, four, three.

[00:53:41]

I just don't think he gets it. I really he has he has way too many possessions where he doesn't as great as he is, a passing out of doubles at times. And by the way, the Marcus Smart steal in game three, I was watching. I don't forget I was awesome. All the highlights that I saw there, somebody said Oh Embiid should want that. You can't make that pass you. Do you understand what Marcus Smart. Just how amazing that he made himself invisible behind a guy and then jumped out like a defensive back.

[00:54:04]

Unlike a screen pass where you like. What the hell's that guy doing over.

[00:54:08]

Yeah he looked like Stephon Gilmore didn't even make any sense. It didn't look like a basketball player doing a basketball thing. Right.

[00:54:14]

But your summary of it, despite how long this took, is that I, I think it's the accurate one that you can talk yourself into feeling bad and yet not wondering if a guy gets it all at the same time. And that's that's where you're at with. Well, have you you don't have to name the couple, but I'm sure you've had a couple in your life that was a volatile couple, broke up a lot, broke up with each other, got back together.

[00:54:42]

All their friends hated hated them when they were together. And you're just like, man, I wish they would break up and then they go to you and like, hey, good news, we're having a kid, this will make it better. We're going to bring a kid into this. The kid on bond us. It'll be great. And you're and you're thinking like, that's going to make it worse. Don't do that to me. The sixes are at the point now where the hiring, the new coach and the new GM and being like we're changing staff is the equivalent of we're having a kid.

[00:55:14]

It's going to be great. Would you do Luder and I just I want to do more of these, but I know they're all stupid because I really if I had to bet a lot of money on it, I would go, whoever the new coach is, he's going to say has it completely figured out. And it's it's going to be coaches some stature, I would imagine a little juice. And poor Brett Brown looked like he had. Every every year, as it got worse, you would look at him and he looked like your buddy who woke up the next day after the golf trip going out.

[00:55:50]

Want to get away from me?

[00:55:52]

Where were you? We had breakfast this morning. You were in your room, too. Well, how about when he called the time out that seven was six and a half seconds left.

[00:56:03]

That was a real I don't know, that was a fuck you for, but it was the possibilities where the referee joked that the challenge was because Brad challenged the play at the end. Well, I don't know, he went one in eight against Brad in the playoffs, that was the final record. He may have also want to do kind of a PGA Fleck thing where he just decides, hey, everyone gave it a all when they played his speech for him.

[00:56:27]

I felt bad, like Philadelphia, Boston, Andrew, Tony, Mo Cheeks.

[00:56:33]

Yeah, they catledge I love that because I wanted the camera to pay him back and Embiid is on some website Chaffe try to figure out if they get back to dinner in time to get back to Philly in time. Could he have dinner at like ten o'clock. Embiid was gone. You don't feel like that I felt like he was gone after after the first half a game three when he got tired and he was like, man, we're not winning this.

[00:56:59]

Can we talk about the Celtics really quick? And I made it really quick, yeah, I imagine we would. So Hayward goes down. Looks looks a little it's like, fuck, that's going to be bad for the Toronto series. It's not good banner for the series, but at least some other guys will be able to get some minutes. The big thing that happened the last three games was Kemba and Kemba looked like the Kemba from the first two months of the season.

[00:57:27]

I did not think we were going to see that version of him again. I was really, really, really discouraged and pessimistic about his ceiling. And by the end of this series I thought he looked like Kemba again and now I. I'm revising my my Celltex ceiling. I do think they have a chance against Toronto. I just think they have a chance now because I think chemists want get out of the east. Where are we talking about. Yeah.

[00:57:53]

To to win any series. I didn't think they could beat Toronto of Kemba was compromised or seventy five percent, something like that. But if he's, if he can go and he can play at that level they have a chance. I mean I'm not, I'm not, I'm not, you know, creating a new formula for success or anything.

[00:58:08]

But I just, I was pessimistic until these last 48 hours. I like the Celtic against Toronto with with Hayward because they could put all these bigger guys on their guards or they at least had a big guy still shock them, they would put a bigger player on Lowry. I think they would put in the most recent game they had Kemba on VanVleet who is just as dangerous as kind of any of these guys. Because when you start to look like some of the serial numbers, they've declined, but they declined defensive shots like they were, they were absurd the beginning of the year and he had like a bad shooting months, which everybody has.

[00:58:45]

But he's still really tough once you get that deep catch. But when you look at his actual shot attempts, they've gone down because other guys are just as good. Norman Powell might be the most surprising sixteen point a game guy for a season. If you roll the entire points per game leaders and you go, Norman Powell gets 16 a game, and then when you watch him, you go, you know what? This makes sense.

[00:59:05]

It's like in the 1980s where you go through the all the rosters and there's guys like, wow, that guy averaged 17 a game that year.

[00:59:11]

What?

[00:59:12]

Yeah, that's a it's exactly because something like you, Novak and the eighty two Lakers, he was back a game that could've crushed it back then.

[00:59:20]

But Zackham only played in two of the regular season games. And I think Gasol is kind of unplayable against the Celtics, but no Hayward and then I don't know how dated this will be once it comes out. But Lowry left the game, the clinching game against Brooklyn with an ankle injury. So we'll see what that is. I mean, Lowry not being around, although I don't know that it's that significant. They were up big and not a big deal.

[00:59:42]

But my dad wanted us to talk about that. The Hayward loss is actually more important than people realize because of. The ball just moves better when he's out there, regardless of whether he's shooting that well, he's so unselfish. And to just replace that with this hodgepodge of the semiannually types like you do feel it. There is a lot of one on one stuff. The last three games, it didn't matter because Philly was so atrocious defensively and had such bad schemes.

[01:00:09]

But it's going to matter against Toronto, the one on one stuff they'll be able to slow down.

[01:00:13]

Now, I think Toronto is going to go small. Gasol looked pretty bad in that matchup there. It's a much better matchup for Tice. But, you know, it was crazy watching Tice against Embiid. It's not ideal obviously. And if the other team's not going to expose Kanter with high screen roles because they don't like their guards, even though Philadelphia did try to do it twice the beginning. The fourth quarters of like Hey wait a minute, doesn't everybody attack here.

[01:00:33]

Like we can try that. Right, and then they did it for two plays. They actually got one decent shot, missed the shot wasn't very good. Tice's a better defensive player than Joel Embiid.

[01:00:43]

We certainly try harder if you're not all the way with me on that. I know this well, there's there's really good stat defensive metrics for Embiid when he's engaged. I would say he was running, he was unengaged in this series. Yeah but at least with taste. But taste is a better matchup in the Toronto thing. But you're Hayward Point. Your dad's habour point is spot on because even with the version of Hayward that still probably generally disappointing. Him as your fourth option?

[01:01:11]

Yeah, that's an insane fourth option, somebody who knows how to play basketball and knows how to switch and knows how to make extra passes and knows how to run a three on one and all the little things that you know, that out of all the guys from the last couple of drafts, which have not been great, Grant Williams was the only one that kind of looked like he knew where to go and what to do. And he made a couple good plays in game two, in game three, and at least seems like he's playable and I think they're going to need him for this next round.

[01:01:39]

But this is one of the reasons I love them against Philly. Remember, you asked me if I was worried about Philly and I was like, no, Toronto worries me for a variety of reasons. But one is that it's crazy to say this because he was a nobody two years ago. But like VanVleet is an awful matchup for the Celtics team. He's the type of guy that they have a ton of trouble defending even Marcus. So I think is a wonderful, fantastic defender.

[01:02:05]

Even he has trouble against the VanVleet guys and they don't. It puts a lot of pressure on Kemba and my big fear with this Kemba Boston thing is just I want Kemba to be healthy. I want him to keep his explosiveness. You saw how much they needed him in those three games and if they're put in a huge defensive workload on him against Lowry and VanVleet. I'm worried that he's going to wear down the longer the series goes. Now Boston got a huge rest here.

[01:02:30]

Toronto is going to get rest too. I don't know if they're going to speed up the start of the series, but the Kemba thing is that's the thing that determines the floor, the ceiling for this Celtics building, whether it's a ten floor building or a seventh floor building or whatever it is like, it all comes down to Kemba. And if Heyward can come back by the conference finals, great. But I worry about the Kemba piece and there's, by the way, going to be a lot of Wannamaker in this next series, which was worse for writer is maybe.

[01:02:59]

Brett Brown called the timeout because he couldn't believe that Brad Stevens was trying to show them up by playing Grant Williams, Romeo Langford and Brad Wannamaker at the same time, I couldn't believe that group was in there. And by the way, the Sixers didn't make up any ground whatsoever.

[01:03:12]

VanVleet is someone who went from three points a game and barely playing, not even half the season. Eight points of game 11 points a game. And now he's 17 points a game and 39 percent from three, although it doesn't shoot it great inside or at least overall.

[01:03:27]

But he's fucking crafty, the crafty dudes he's so like the kempo point is a good one because it did look like Kemba closing shots like those. What he did to Horford is obviously it's against Horford but he made some guys miss like it looked like UConn Kemba again and I don't know when he comes back a four month bubble and you're like wait he's still not ready to go like what the hell. And so credit to the Celtics because they actually looked like they handled this the right way because it looks like it's going to at least last for this year.

[01:03:55]

But VanVleet is he is kind of sham at face Kawhi.

[01:04:00]

When you look at this development like the Schmidt face Kawhi because Kawhi was.

[01:04:06]

Oh all right you know who's this guy not scoring. There's, there's just a bunch of players now that not like VanVleet some star star but his production in four straight years is is off the charts and no one would have picked this as first year.

[01:04:18]

Well let's say Boston beats Toronto. Toronto's get sent packing. What happens to that, Tim? I think that's a storyline that I hadn't really thought about and then I was thinking about. You know that, Larry, they extended for one more year, but I think Gasol and Abakar are free agents, right? Extended. So what have we got? We got Larry Wilmore, who they extended before the Souls blockers up to VanVleet is. He's up, but it's it's not even restricted, is he, now he's just going to get paid, right.

[01:04:55]

So what do you do if you're then, because. You could make a case, you won the title, you went out on Kunai and it worked, you defended the title this year in a really good way. Let's say Boston beats them now, it's like, well, what are we going to do? We're trying to protect this round two team, basically like you're not paying Gasol and Ibaka again. Could you make a case that they could actually, like, try to rebuild after this?

[01:05:22]

You know, they could like S.A.M. people. I think Golden State's going to end up trade in that number two pick right now. I think they moved that picture to get a veteran. Golden State calls you and says, Hey. What's happening? It's called state. What are your thoughts about wigan's? The number two pick in our Minnesota pick for S.A.M.. Bringuier in his home, Canada, yeah, he's from Canada, he's from Canada, he's a hometown kid, you've got title.

[01:05:54]

They would hang up on you so fast just because you think the title. Yeah. Just because you won the title doesn't mean you go, hey, you guys want to take this year off?

[01:06:01]

Like, I don't even want to scout the end of the southern teams. Yeah, me neither.

[01:06:05]

We won the title.

[01:06:06]

They hang up. OK, they're going to. By the way, that's not even you think that hangs up and goes say you can't trade Suhakam for a number two pick in this draft.

[01:06:17]

You can't rule. I think with nurse being this good, maybe they flip Lowry with the one year and thirty remaining to somebody pay VanVleet I wouldn't mind paying it back again I'm back calling on Ibaka especially at the way he's.

[01:06:30]

I think I just wanted to talk it out.

[01:06:32]

Give me your other trade that I feel like you're more embarrassed to share with me now. For who I thought you had another Toronto trade, somebody else is going to call. Now, that was really it I was trying to figure out if they rebuilt, because I do think Messi is one of those GMES. Where he could look at this thing and be like, all right, this guy is really good, he's not that good. There's actually like we'd be trading this guy for full price.

[01:07:01]

Could do I think he could be like the number one guy in a championship team. No, I still don't have a number one guy. Maybe this is a way to rebuild and whatever. But I could also see what you described. They just bring everybody back. They keep it going and they try to figure out how to work around the margins. But I think it gets tough when the Lowry contract is really scary. I think there's nothing scarier than how old is he now?

[01:07:26]

Like thirty to thirty. I can't believe he doesn't get hurt more often considering he's on the ground.

[01:07:32]

He's in the twenty six is thirty four now. Right. But I think next year would probably be the last year you'd want to be paying him over twenty million a year and then VanVleet I. I mean two years from now he might be the best player in the league. For all we know, he's the rate that he improves each year. He might be Allen Iverson in two years. I also don't think that it's. A. Product, whatever their off season is, it isn't, oh, we lost to Boston in seven games, oh, we beat Boston in six games.

[01:08:05]

So now let's keep this group together because I just don't think smartphone officers make those decisions.

[01:08:10]

I only mention it because I think had they not won the title last year, I think they probably would have blown this team up. You don't think so? I think part of the reason they kept this team together was because they smartly and respectfully. Believed in defending a title, keeping a nucleus together, and they were smart and now they have a chance to win another title.

[01:08:34]

But all of us were so wrong on it. And I you know, I was I was incredibly when they did the extension on Lowry, I thought it was to be able to make him more valuable in a trade before this year's deadline instead of I think it was him to as in free agency. And but I think they did why they did it. We don't expect him to improve that much. He did O.J. and and Bobby, who think any of us that some healthy goes.

[01:08:54]

Yeah, maybe he has a chance, but I really like him a to me has had this resurgence that showed up last year in the playoffs in certain spots, especially against Golden State. VanVleet the level he's at that's another one. And then every single rotation guy you're like Oh Terence Davis is going to get buckets. Oh like Caruso skinny taller older brother is going to get buckets too. There's just all of these guys that you don't hate and that's you know, I haven't even mentioned Norman Powell again since that whole thing.

[01:09:18]

So I was wrong about this team. But I also don't think you're going to make mistakes by losing the top player in the league after you win a title and going, I don't expect as much from this team. And they filled in all those gaps. But we'll really know that they've replaced Kawhi depending on who who's their bucket getter in those huge spots, because there's no one on that team. That's that guy.

[01:09:37]

So, you know, sometimes when I hear other people, Jordan, maybe Jordan next year, but, you know, even Mark Jones is from Canada on the broadcast because Toronto is the most disrespected champion ever. And you go, OK, but it's it's very simple. Yeah. They lost the best guy in the league. That's it. That's all it is. Yeah. Sorry for disrespecting a team that doesn't have its best player.

[01:09:56]

They were one of the three at worst and maybe as you said, they squared. Announcer I thought there are some weird announcer stuff the last week. Oh this oh this whole week. Mark Jones praising Philly for trying hard. It's like it's the fucking playoffs. You're supposed to try hard. Look at look at this team. They there's no quitting this team. It's like, well, we've seen a lot of quit actually the last couple last couple of games.

[01:10:21]

And they would roll over at the first chance. I don't know. I thought I think the announcer has been strange.

[01:10:27]

Mark Jackson had one where he goes, If I'm Kawhi, I'm telling Coach I got Luca here on out. And I I'm not 100 percent sure because I certainly wasn't in the building because who was it?

[01:10:43]

It was Paul McGuire, I think was the biggest culprit on Sunday Night Football was terrible. He would he would see the ref that throws the flag and a football game goes to the lead official and will be like, hey, offsides, whatever. And then it's the oldest trick in the announcing booth where you see what the ref did to tell the lead. Who's going to announce it anyway? Like, I think they're going to hold on fifty seven here, I think.

[01:11:08]

Yeah, I think I saw him holding your like you already know that it's a hold because we can't see that part of the camera angle.

[01:11:14]

So Mark, when he goes, if I'm Kawhi Leonard, I tell my head coach I have Luca the rest of the way. He's mine. And that was good. Mark Jackson, I know I got it down in Van Gundy was like. Yeah, I think you can see look, so I think he gave it away a little bit, that he was basically saying, like Luca was pointed to Doc Rivers, as Mark was like, if I'm Kawhi Leonard.

[01:11:41]

And so I was right, you know, that felt a little bit like that. Or maybe Mark Jackson absolutely nailed it. Who knows?

[01:11:47]

I like what Mark Jackson does the. Like, people don't talk enough about how buff Ryan Rosillo is, like when he makes it seem like he's discovering something that everybody has already acknowledged years ago. You know, people don't talk about what a creator Kawhi Leonard is saying. No, we actually do. We talked about it like that one doesn't make it.

[01:12:09]

He did it with Melo do weird ones where we like people over the years. Knocking Milos commitment to defense challenge accepted.

[01:12:18]

You're like, yeah, he was an atrocious defensive player for years then that's that's why I said that I had a tweet because he had he had one where it was it was so obvious and I was going to tweet it, but I wasn't going to sign it by anybody.

[01:12:32]

And it was going to be like of all the great friends in the history of television. Rachel, Ross, Monica, Phoebe and Chandler Bing are at the top.

[01:12:46]

Just just let people guess all of us. I can't do it.

[01:12:51]

It's played out. I left Joey out, I think. Sorry anyway, but busted Toronto is going to be awesome. I'm really excited for round two because we also have Miami, Milwaukee, which I want to talk about. One second.

[01:13:02]

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[01:14:21]

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[01:14:29]

So our round two could look like this. Boston, Toronto, Miami, Milwaukee. Lakers, Houston. And then Utah versus Clippers. Dallas, which would probably be more fun if Lucas somehow shocked the world and made round two, and then we just got to ride the the leukotriene, but either way, that's probably the weak series unless Luke is in there. Which which one of those three. Are you the most excited about Boston, Toronto, Miami, Milwaukee or Lakers, Houston, because I feel like I'm going to hate watch the Lakers Houston series and it's basically like a battle of a basket of basketball soul.

[01:15:12]

Houston, all due respect, you're doing it the right way. If you can win playoff games with James Harden and a bunch of castoffs, much like Dallas is doing, like you're doing something correctly, but now they'll be going against the Lakers or they're basically saying. All right, Davis, we're going to give you we're going to spot you forty two points a night and probably 18 rebounds. And LeBron, you're probably going to have a thirty five, fifteen and twelve every day, but we're going to shoot sixty threes.

[01:15:42]

Good luck. That's how it's going to play out. And if I'm the Lakers, I'm terrified because I have two of the best three parts of the series. I traded the farm to get Davis. I'm on my way to this Clipper series, but now I have this weird Houston team that's basically like if you're in a football, if you're in the NFL playoffs and you're going to see a team that's running like the fucking wishbone and you're like, what is this?

[01:16:06]

I know we're better than this team, but Jesus Christ, what do we do? So I would say that Serious has the highest WTF upside, I think Boston, Toronto is the best pure series and I think Miami Walk is the best chance for an upset. Yeah, the best series is probably Toronto and Boston, and I think without Hayward, I'm picking Toronto. I'm not sure, though not not all the way. I'm like 60 40 Toronto for me.

[01:16:31]

I'm trying to not put too much in the regular season. As I mentioned again before, SIOC missing the two to the four games. So what do you do with that? As we've mentioned numerous times, and I feel like I'm doing everybody a favor, like I'm admitting my bias here when Jeff Green is raining threes in game three and Chris Paul is about to be eliminated while Chris Paul really was on the bench and Dennis Schruder decided to go Atlanta's Dennis Schruder and was screwing up almost every single possession.

[01:16:58]

And it was so frustrating because you're watching Oklahoma City. And again, I say frustrating, not as a Thunder fan, but we all know where I'm at with this. When Houston is just cooking, it has to it's really it's one of the most helpless feelings going against Houston when it's just working out, even when, like every single hard shot, you're like that's going to go in.

[01:17:19]

That's going to go in hard. It's just it's just it works.

[01:17:22]

OK, so the whole premise of it works. And the small thing we've been over, I've talked about all the rebounding rate stuff, but if the Lakers get Houston and I don't know if Oklahoma City's uncovered something there with getting Adams out, because the weird thing about game three playing Gallo at center, we're waiting for it. Yeah. And the rebounding rate was actually Houston was up in the rebounding advantage in that game. And you're like, well, Adams is going to turn up like Adams.

[01:17:48]

Sometimes we get a look at the bucket real close, kicks it back out to somebody else. And, you know, this is this is the series where you're supposed to make these guys pay a little bit. This is supposed to be like the running game where you get some of these touches to try to wear them down in the inside and it didn't matter. And then Oklahoma City completely fell apart with no secondary cuts. There was no action. And now you're telling me, like Shea and Schreuder and Chris Paul can't make something happen.

[01:18:11]

And then it all sort of magically happened there?

[01:18:14]

I think they figured out they figured out their identity as that game went along. And I do think that's going to go seven, that series dort.

[01:18:21]

This is enormous because now that the refs know that door is this guy defensively, he's not going to get called for that other guys get his arms. I mean, that's the dude in pickup. You're like, oh fuck, I hope that doesn't guard me where we're at.

[01:18:38]

Like, I got it on me. Flak jacket. Who gets you know, when you walk all the way away from door here like you're like in your Farmersville, he's like the guy pick up.

[01:18:48]

He's got bad B.O. He's just all over like, fuck, he asked a whole five dollars and I do a quick luchador thing because. Well, I mean, he's one of the breakout stars of the bubble for me. All right. I have I have an NBA theory for you say ratings save in ten years. The NBA has some issues. Whole new style league. Just, Lou, it no 30 teams and you can keep four players, but then the rest or you can keep five.

[01:19:19]

All right, so let's just put it that one hundred and fifty, you can keep your five starters, but then the other three hundred players are NBA mercenaries. That means you like Jeff Cram? Pretty much, yeah. Jeff Greene. Except that means Lou Dorrit's never assigned to a team. It just means somebody calls and goes, hey, it's the Trailblazers. We got Hardin this week. We're going to get some more we're going to pay you one million dollars to show up on Thursday.

[01:19:44]

I like it. So, you know, Georgia is in Lawrence Fishburne and John Wick or something. This is an actual text exchange. Me and my dad Thursday two forty three p.m. my dad text me must be so upset about Leadore. My dad text me. I know it's Jeff Greene. But we could have used them off our bench, so I don't I'm worried about him. Tell him I'm actually worried about him now. I texted him back.

[01:20:10]

Stop it. He texted me back. Everyone deserves a third chance. I texted him back. He was your least favorite cell to of the last ten years. You're going to want our Abdelnabi back next. And he said, true, forget I brought it up like the way Houston uses him, they pull him if he sucks, he just made three threes. Jeff Green, winning over my dad as a playoff guy is by new, most shocking moment at twenty twenty, it's replaced all the other crazy things that happened, including a global pandemic.

[01:20:41]

Jeff Green on the Rockets, anyone on the rockets have been Macklemore is now a problem, at least on social media terms. If Ben Macklemore can become a problem, anyone that goes to the rockets is like any dude in his 20s having a personal stylist that lives with him. It just it just increases your whole of your their your output. You're a different person in that system. And that's why I always think it's kind of funny. Like say they say the Rockets blow the series, the Antone's out.

[01:21:09]

I think there'd be some really weird stuff that could possibly happen with that team, because I also think D'Antoni could be a person of interest with a lot of other teams, because I just like like the New Orleans Pelicans, maybe the Sixers, like the Patriots of New Orleans.

[01:21:23]

What are you trying to say, you know, something like the New Orleans Pelicans sounds like you're trying to say, you know something. All right.

[01:21:28]

Well, I just think he goes to where he goes to where the the pace and the point guard is. He's learned that from his next experience. He took the next job without having the type of team that now he knows.

[01:21:39]

If I'm going on a team, I'm going to a team that has a guy that can do what I like to do, because I don't know if we're going to do some of our trade stuff a little bit later on, which is all I want to do. All right. But it's. I would just be so interested to see what the rockets would run because it would harden, Harden doesn't want to not run this. And what if what if they were like, hey, we're going to actually we're going to be posting up?

[01:22:05]

Dwayne Dedmon And then the thing is, if you have somebody as special as Hardin or as special as Luka, this is the style you have to play. You just have to go get shooters for them. What are you going to have post up guys for? What do you want guys clogging the paint?

[01:22:20]

But then what did it say to what isn't Golden State do this because they have two guys.

[01:22:24]

Maybe they will know to say keeps going. She keeps moving. That's the difference. That's what some of the stuff that drives me nuts on these these five out offensive formations where. Oh, I see what you mean. Yeah. They try to get action out of it while they're playing that stuff.

[01:22:41]

I know that's a shocking concept, but like when you're not in the play, the guy moves right to maybe be an option and Dallas will do it on some cuts.

[01:22:50]

I think he does it. Dallas does it more than Houston does it. Russ off the ball will cut. I don't know that stuff. I got to see the numbers, but I like when OKC had Gallo at center. And they just basically did the Loukia hard and spread the floor thing. But if I was Houston, I'm like, oh, fuck, they figured this out because if I'm Houston, I'm like, great, you're playing Adam's awesome.

[01:23:19]

This is this great for us. Please keep doing this. But now the Gallo Art Center and Gallo looks like he's half confused in this series. Kind of like what the fuck is what's going on with sportive? I play. But at the same time, I like to be down to one when I mean, they were like. Ten point underdogs after that, when they went down to nothing and I keep hearing Westbrooks not as close to coming back as I think people seem to think.

[01:23:47]

We're going to leave it on that. Well, it's Russell Westbrook who I would think would play with anything, and if it was just a squad, I expected it to be.

[01:23:56]

And this wasn't based on any information. But you're like, oh, it's Westbrook.

[01:23:59]

He's just I mean, that guy, it's like when CGY got hurt in 09, not to say it's the same injury, but now the longer the CG thing dragged on, you're gone. Well, this doesn't this doesn't feel right. This guy is like the all time warrior. So the Westbrook thing, I don't know, I, I think the longer he sets the more OKC is going to figure out what to do. And your guy, Chris Paul, I know you're rooting for him.

[01:24:22]

There was a moment there where it's like, all right, Chris, this wouldn't be adding this to your resume of terrible playoff series that turned out badly for some reason. And then he kind of started looking like Chris Paul a little bit is like Schreuder inspired him. Schreuder is great. Well, sure, I'm telling you, Schreuder, in the end of the third quarter, it was it was bad in Chris was watching that part, but I was more frustrated with Chris Paul in game two than I even was in game two.

[01:24:51]

It was a wait a minute, like your Chris Paul, you're the guy that's supposed to unlock this and figure something out, like how could you guys have this many bad possessions in a row? And then once Paul starts hitting all those threes, I was like, hey, there's my guy. There is. Let's do let's do trades. OK, so I want to start. Well, I think what do you do if you're Indiana is a good question, because I really do like their team and I thought Sabonis was one of the best 20 players in the league this year.

[01:25:18]

Wow. I'm not saying you're wrong, but I don't have it that way. But ah, maybe twenty five is definitely an all star on my list today. I thought he was a real problem and he's just built different. Turner thing. I don't know who would you rather have out there for 40 minutes a game, Sabonis or Turner like there's no way that's not a massive drop off. So I don't know if Indiana should be a panic team at the same time.

[01:25:45]

Audible's got a year left at 21 million. I don't I can't imagine he's going to stay there a year from now, especially because it kind of feels more like, you know, the Bragdon Oladipo thing. I'm not sure you need both anyway, and it just seems like he's a natural trade piece and I think I had a good holiday holiday.

[01:26:03]

The kid they drafted.

[01:26:04]

I like, I like him to I, I got to tell you I wasn't big on him at UCLA and watching him more and more. There's something there and I don't know what the ceiling is, but I went from sort of disinterest to what kind of like that kid down. So. I feel like he gets traded, is he on the Pacers next year? Yes or no? Oladipo Yeah. I'm going to say no, because they've paid Brogdon.

[01:26:31]

And not, you know, you can only be paid Tobi's paid soberness, I got to tell you, I know I don't have. Here's here's what I do, and I'm pretty sure most people that we're not reporters, but you talk to enough people and you go, hey, you know, who's what do you think might be willing to shake some things up? Hey, give me some names that you hear that could be available. And we're going to get to some of those names because you and I double checked the list and all that kind of stuff.

[01:26:59]

But the Pacers thing feels like it go it could go in a bunch of different directions. That's it. That's that's that's as comfortable as I feel like talking about it right now at this point. But it it's just seems to be all over the place. Well, who would you keep? Because I like I really like their team, and I actually think my aim is just really good and as a bad match up for them. That's a bonus because I think the bonus would have been a real problem for Miami, because I think Myles Turner is somebody that you like from afar.

[01:27:29]

And then if you have him every night you go, you kind of ruined him for me. I kind of I like them more than you. And then you were you were kind of peed on him a little. And then now when I watch him, I watch him through that tainted lens.

[01:27:41]

Sorry, you should be thanking me. He takes he takes some shots. You're like, why do you know that they make a three every once in a while and they're like, oh. When they were making a run in the last Miami game, they ran a time out like an out of time out, they ran a three for them. And I was like, wow. And I just I don't know if that's one of those deals with the coach where it doesn't seem to make a ton of sense.

[01:28:04]

But it's like I hopefully like I get him going and I want him to know, like, these other things that we never really think about from the outside where we ran that for you because I trust you and, you know, be energized and we don't care that it didn't go in and all that kind of stuff. So that's one team. That's one of the.

[01:28:22]

The reason I think Oladipo is an important conversation because I think he gets you something.

[01:28:27]

I think he gets you something and I think there's going to be some teams that are pretty aggressive, like I guarantee both of us think Brooklyn is going to be doing stuff and Brooklyn's got tradable contracts to have that Joe Harris thing they got to figure out. But, you know, they're going to try to figure out who that third fit is. I don't think either of us you had to tell them you're LaVert over underrated thing.

[01:28:49]

OK, this happens in life all the time. But Jaroslava, when you watch him in college you're like, whoa. And so when they drafted him I'm like, you know what, I really like that pick. It makes sense. And then he comes along and you're like, this is pretty incredible. And then he gets hurt. We're all kind of bummed out. That ends up not being that bad of an injury. And Caris Levert has become this really nice story because he's drafting behind all these other stories.

[01:29:12]

And then the more you watch Jaroslava you go as talented as he is him taking a bad shot, not making against Portland in that final game of the bubble. That was like one of the least surprising things. I think he's this is unbelievable that Brooklyn has had this run of high usage kind of I'm going to really do my own thing here where D'Angelo Russell actually got better with them, but was was piggish there for a while and then never feeling like it was going in at the end.

[01:29:35]

And then Dinwiddie you're like you know who I like is this Dinwiddie guy a little bit. He's got something and you could even see Adkinson I think trusted Dinwiddie more than Russell at some point and then the more he started watching Dinwiddie like is Dinwiddie now another version of Russell and then Kyrie comes in and Kyrie puts up these massive numbers But you're like is this in the flow of anything and then once Kyrie was out was like Dinwiddie like I'm back and now that Dinwiddie is gone Caris Levert just like all of you guys can fuck off because now it's my team and so yes he's talented.

[01:30:03]

Yes I like the story but if you let Caris Levert probably have the keys to your car. It's a little early. So I remember way back when when I used to be a writer, I don't know if I have a great I actually is going to put you a writing idea. NBA mercenaries. I had to get you back in the scene. I did a whole riff about David West. I had him as an overrated, underrated guy where the announcers were saying how underrated he was for like two years.

[01:30:31]

And he weirdly became overrated because it's like, all right, he's 17 and eight, settled out, but for two years, you know what's great is this David West. And then there's always guys like that. And I do wonder if Caris Levert maybe is our next. Yeah. Oh, care. But anyway, I think he's probably a trade candidate, Dinwiddie a ten million who's kind of a loose cannon, Jared Allen because DeAndre is Kawhi and I mean Kyrie and K.D. buddy.

[01:30:59]

So I was wondering if there was some sort of Oladipo thingy in there and then what. He's a player option.

[01:31:05]

So remember he was doing the thing where he was like oh yeah, if you guys Venmo me I'll go anywhere for the minimum wage immediately. Like everybody was like that's a cap violation.

[01:31:16]

They're the most interesting guy to me who's who's I think out there is Buddy Hield whose contract kicks in next year at twenty four point four. I just like Buddy Hield, I think he was in a bad situation in Sacramento, and I, I think he's the type of guy that I could see in a playoff series like the ones we're watching right now. Would you do Barkley and Buddy Hield for Embiid. I'd probably have to get their pictou and. Something else is in bag, Begley hasn't been on the stand, the court, though, not at all.

[01:31:52]

But I know you like them. I did multiple firsts for him. I don't know, man, we're just shopping and beat around anywhere. I just throwing them at you from time to time, man. Well, I, I. The thing is, if you get Embiid. And then, you know, he's like, I'm mad, I got traded, I'm getting in shape this year, the whole league is going to be like, oh, fuck.

[01:32:12]

I mean, trust me, the league likes the way it is right now. Say, Indiana. I think Denver is another one where we're taping this in order. So it's seven o'clock. We don't know this Denver, Utah game point out. But if this Denver series ends bad, they're. Or something happens, they have a lot of pieces, right, because they have the Harris contract, that's 120 million, they have Porter, they have Will, Barton said 13 million.

[01:32:41]

They even have the Jamal Murray card to play. So it's like if you really wanted to put a full fledged second star next to Yokich. And you're trying to do that without giving up money, so you trying to basically make money, your third guy, and you bring in a second star next to Murray and Yokich, they had the salaries and they had the Porter piece.

[01:33:01]

And I do think Porter would have a lot of trade value. You agree? I have a ton. Are you kidding me? He's look, we've been over the defensive lapses, but every time you watch a Michael Porter junior game, his shot making ability, he would be the guy as an Olympic diver that would go, I'm going to win because I'm going to take the most difficult attempts at this. I didn't think you were going to the Olympics today.

[01:33:24]

Sorry that I gave it to you. But there's shots that he pulls up. There's just 90 percent of league, if you like. Don't take that shot. And he keeps making these or these pull ups contested threes. And his I don't know who the last announcer was because you lose track, but it wasn't a horrible comp. Not saying he's different, but Durant's impossible because the shot release, you're just not going to do anything with it. Garnett was impossible because the shot released.

[01:33:49]

It's never going to be contested. I'm trying to think a little bit of that, the athleticism around the rim and the stuff he's able to do.

[01:33:55]

And he's at weird angles. It's pretty unusual. And I don't know who the. Who the doppelgangers are for, that, you know, who would you rather have? Well, I think it's a little McGrady's ish, but he doesn't have any McGrady's playmaking ability and he's probably more physical than McGrady is.

[01:34:11]

Well, the thing is, if you're a Denver. You have this guy, Yokich, who is one of the, I think, eight or nine best players in the league, you don't really have the second piece of them. You don't know how long your window is with any of this stuff. And with Porter, like the guy is coming off a major injury, small sample size, high high trade value. And it's like maybe you cash in and try to get a legit second star.

[01:34:38]

OK, so you have the salaries with Porter to actually go and pursue a real guy if you wanted to, I don't know who that real guy is, but let's run through the exercise, because when you texted this assignment to me for Denver and by the way, Yokich is getting destroyed and Utah is playing and you know, we're saying this before we know what's going to happen in game four, OK? But so far in this series.

[01:35:01]

The games that Utah played, game two and three, was almost perfect basketball, they're humiliating this team. The third quarter.

[01:35:09]

No, I'm a big third quarter, guys. Everybody knows back in the NBA today days. But Denver is getting outscored one hundred and nine to sixty and of course, one hundred and sixty eight.

[01:35:20]

Well, there hasn't happened in that. So I'm afraid to talk about it because they make us look bad. But let's say the series goes bad for Denver. They lose in five or six.

[01:35:29]

Well, I think at this point at least, everybody is cool enough that yes. Three games in Gobert has Gobert did geocaching game three. I didn't really expect to see that in there and Jokic is lost and so if you look at the Harris hasn't played Barton hasn't played but Bogdanovic wasn't there. Connelly missed the first two games. You can't really make that excuses for Denver. So yes you still have who. A little bit in the Aaron Rodgers part where when it looks good you're like man he's just so goofy but it all works and then when it doesn't work you're like this guy's just plodding around the whole time.

[01:35:59]

Like when Aaron Rodgers in the team is doing great, he'll like, look at him. Steely, calm, never affected when when the Packers aren't doing well. Look how pissed off Rodgers is right now. You can just see it on his face. It's the exact same guy the whole time.

[01:36:11]

Would you rather have Murray or Oladipo? I think I'd rather have Murray yeah, probably after the injury, although I do think Oladipo physically the way he's moved around after the bubble is look better. Agreed. Can I. Yeah. Yeah. But he looks like he's, he's not where he was two years ago even close. That just doesn't seem like he's the same guy and that doesn't mean it won't happen next year. But I think the combo of not knowing if he would stay as a free agent and things like that, the guy I was thinking for them is Chris Paul, because, you know, I think there's I think there's a different conversation along the lines of what we're talking about.

[01:36:51]

Some of these other teams, like if OKC loses in round one, what do you do? You're not going to pay one hundred and thirty five million for this expensive team when you have all these draft picks, the obvious move is to rebuild around. Shea, start over. Why would you pay the tax Denver could put together? A package I don't think they would have to put Porter in it, you know, you could do Harris. Well, Porter is a non-starter, I think, at this point.

[01:37:15]

Like if you're confirmed that Chris Paul. Yeah, but you could do like Harris, Barton and Bulbul. Something like that, just like, yeah, we're going to save you eight, nine million this year, we're getting the best part in the trade. We're taking on this giant Chris Paul contract. And it's basically a salary dump if you're Occy. I'm just any Denver conversation that I would have with Denver, if I'm the other team and I go, I got to pay 40 million for Gary Harris defensive matchup the next two years.

[01:37:47]

No. And, you know, we had moments where we thought Gary Harris might be something and maybe it's still a little too early to give up on them, but it's a 40 million dollar bill guaranteed the next two years. Just somebody who you like in your guard rotation because he plays good defense that I didn't like him in the past.

[01:38:07]

I just thought he was bad. This season he became unplayable. So you're saying you think Denver's just better off riding the Porter thing, playing it by ear, and they're they're probably not a title team anyway for the next year, but try to do the slow game and try to build around Yokich. Maybe there's a way to pick Paul off if some of this ownership stuff gets really weird and maybe the Thunder are one of those teams with whatever the cap is going to be, which is a whole nother discussion about some of these monster contracts.

[01:38:35]

But I think it would all get scaled a little bit with the CBA anyway. Maybe that exists.

[01:38:41]

Maybe there's a pick package in there where you feel like, OK, we're getting a couple of picks out of this, but there's not really one player you're not going to get. Porter, Junior, Bulbul. I just have a hard time believing, like there's a ton of GMs out there that are really, really excited about him, which may not be fair as of right now, but 30 but not that excited about that. Thirty million in in in salaries in one year.

[01:39:00]

Coming back for Harris and Jerami Grant, they already had Jerami Grant in Oklahoma City, I think Denver, who I've never quite understood why people would always be like, hey, this is a team that can win the championship.

[01:39:10]

It's just not much there. And even Murray's comments after game three where he said, quote, I think we just have a target on our back.

[01:39:15]

Why do you think you have a target on your back?

[01:39:17]

Yeah, there's no Denver conversation around it. By the way, the last game one except Murray got red hot, which he does like every four or five games. But it was a Utah could have won the first three. But yeah, no, I think you're right because I think you're right. I think Denver so places. Yeah, I think they just hope Porter Junior turns into like a real 35 minute and I kind of borderline star and stops having the defensive lapses that have prevented Malone from trusting him, which still is happening at times.

[01:39:46]

So. Are we sure Denver has the right coach? I know this is going to make you laugh. But the great Chris Wallace. Who I know has some bad trades on his resume, but back when I first was breaking the business, no one was nicer to me as far as being a front office guy, never told me any secrets, but he would talk to me about theories, right? He would talk to me about the general thought of the disconnect between Foreign Office and coach.

[01:40:16]

It was brilliant stuff. Chris was really great gracious. And he actually taught me a lot of stuff that still holds up now. And we'd be like, there's just completely different philosophies battling with each other between the front office being like, let's develop Porter and the coach being like, my job is to win the game. And I think Malone's done a good job with getting Yokich and Murray to these points. But the Porter stuff. This is a guess, but that had to be incredibly frustrating all year for the front office to be like, are you a member of those stretches where you talk about it on this podcast where they have all these injuries and he still wouldn't play him any meaningful minutes and now you see what you have.

[01:40:54]

What if those minutes were real? What if he'd been playing more minutes before and then you now just trusted him more if you have real playoff aspirations, which going into Denver always looks at the scoreboard, the third seed, look at our record. But Denver not getting any home games in the playoffs. I think this is playing out even if they beat Utah, which they still certainly could against, could be jamming myself up here. So I should stop talking about it.

[01:41:13]

But, you know, look, we think Utah because we thought Utah was kind of a mess going into this. And now they've looked at those games, two and three, Utah, like almost playing perfect basketball. So we're going to do something. We're going to try something on this Sunday. We're going to take a break. And when we come back, it's going to be an hour and a half later and Sunday. We're going to take a break.

[01:41:35]

When you come back, we're going to tell you what we thought about Denver, Utah, the second half, game four. And if we learned anything and we'll continue this Denver conversation. So there you go. See you in a second.

[01:41:48]

Everybody loves game shows. Everybody has a podcast. I've got both. Hey, everybody. I'm Kyle Grant. In my new show, Ten Questions is a game show, talk show, athletes, movie stars, everybody will come on not just to talk. They come on this show to compete. Ten questions that whether they know it or not, are somehow inspired by a moment in their life or their career. Ten questions, ten points. So much fun.

[01:42:15]

Head over to Spotify and please subscribe to ten questions with Kyle Brant's. All right, we're back with fast forwarded your life by an hour and 40 minutes, we just watched the second half of Utah, Denver, which I'm glad we saved this because this was an awesome game. I remember I was talking to Sound House about that in this game today. And I was like, I just think Utah has the series wrapped. The only thing that Denver has going for it is the random Jamal Murray forty point game.

[01:42:47]

It happened again, but Mitchell was a little bit better. This was one of the most entertaining games of the bubble. What was your big takeaway?

[01:42:56]

You're so frustrated if you're Denver because you've got an epic game from Murray, which was kind of like what we saw in game one, which was even bigger. And I think that, like the positives, all of this is we get Yokich, you've got Murray, but even in the two man game with those two guys that I think at times to be a little predictable and limited them, it was on fire. The problem is, is that Donovan Mitchell's on the other side and Utah has these moments where they're playing unbelievable offensive basketball.

[01:43:21]

They shot from three. They shot forty eight percent. And that's what happens when you have Jokic and Murray go off. Like how do they lose. Well because the other team isn't missing from three right now and this is three games on offense for Utah.

[01:43:33]

That's insane Mitchell.

[01:43:37]

Who got the got the mid 20s weight thing thrown around with them a few times, including on this podcast by me, is look very 06 whiteish, this series, but I think partly because Denver doesn't really have the apparatus to to contain him. I'll be interested to see what happens in the next series, which I would assume would be the Clippers unless Luka. Has something to say about it, but next series, the Clippers just have a million guys to throw at him, I think it could be a lot harder for him to do the things he was doing in this series.

[01:44:11]

Yeah, they went with Grant and as we were taping the podcast, so I don't know all the defensive assignments in the first half. I'll go back and look. But they went with Grant there more towards the end and there was a stretch where it was actually starting to work a little. But then, you know, like really great players with momentum in the ball, they just kind of start their movement a little bit further out. And you're just it's such a massive disadvantage.

[01:44:30]

I mean, there's even a time where was probably moving screen, but I don't really care because everybody sort of moves some of these screens. But there was a play where Mitchell went left, was bringing Grant, stayed with them and then go back instead of staying with the screen, just kind of backed up. And Mitchell Road grant into the back of Gobert. Yeah finished on the left side and Grant's freaking out to the ref being like it's a moving screen but it was, it wasn't even the Gobert was doing one of those Daniel ties seals it was just Mitchell.

[01:44:57]

There's something to be said about driving players with the ball that understand how to work their defender into another one of their guys. And it's not. Everybody's great at it. You know, some people just get the ball. Hey here's the screen. I'm going to go. Mitchell's great at it. And yeah, he was just better than everybody, which is saying something because Murray was on fire.

[01:45:13]

He reminds me of one of those running backs who can just be at full speed. All of a sudden, you know, where it's like all of a sudden he's running a four to forty. Ty Lawson was a little bit like that. During the two years when Ty Lawson was was really effective, it kind of underrated, but he would you'd send him a pick and then all of a sudden he was like two feet from the rim and you'd be like, what happened?

[01:45:40]

I, I think Mitchell I think he's gone up a level. From last year, two years ago, from a sophistication standpoint with how he's navigating the team has I think part of it is because no, though Bogdanovich Connelly has been rendered basically a sidekick and he's just over and over and over again has to figure it out. It's a little like the dontcha chart and stuff. We were talking earlier where it's the same guy over and over again making decisions and it just feels like he's gone up maybe a half level.

[01:46:11]

You don't agree? No, I'm not. I'm not saying that. I just think it's kind of ironic that we're finishing the pod with this kind of topic. And yet if Mitchell were in his second year, like Luca is, we'd be going, oh, my God, like, what is this guy capable of?

[01:46:26]

But what we do is we kind of turn the page on some of these guys just because of the limitations of what happens. Like this is a team I had big expectations for this year. And yeah, even though the record was pretty good, it just never felt like it was clicking the right way. They lose. Bogdanovich I feel like this is a huge problem because, you know, Mitchell, in the past it felt like he was trying to do everything I can when I'm with you.

[01:46:49]

I think that Mitchell had these Wade moments and then it felt a little Westbrook Ishi where. Yes. Oh man. You're really just trying to do all of this on your own. And that has to always be the frustration for the most gifted scorer where how do I figure out a way to keep everybody engaged and not be gross but yet know, hey, you know, what I don't want is another Jordan Clarkson Drive. And it was weird because Quin left Clarkson out there with the main guys.

[01:47:12]

And then Clarkson did have in the fourth quarter a couple of drives that were both bad. They're both turnovers. And then you're watching that going. This is kind of back to the whole Harden Murray thing where Murray was probably like, why do I want guys that aren't as good as the best guy having the ball at any moment?

[01:47:25]

Yeah, and it actually, when you break it down that way, makes sense. And that's all they did. It was really two teams going with their two man game. And Gobert continues to show an aggressiveness that I don't know that we all banked on seeing. I mean he had that dunk in traffic. How about the times that catch at the baseline and then he went right at Yokich to be like I'm not even remotely afraid of you, I'm not even sure he always makes that catch.

[01:47:50]

But his confidence is way up here, too.

[01:47:52]

It's too bad for Denver because I think if Millsap I don't think he went off a cliff, but he definitely drove off the road career wise. He's just not the same guy and. For what they're paying from that spot, a 30 million dollar guy, and it goes back to what we were talking about earlier, when you're paying big money for these due to start hitting thirty two, thirty three, thirty four just becomes a complete crapshoot.

[01:48:17]

You know, Toronto's paying big money for Kalari, who's as good as ever. Utah is paying big money for Millsap and Conley, not as good as ever. You just kind of don't know. There's no way to gauge it and there are guys short. It is nice. But even tonight, he's just he's just needs more reps. So to go back to Denver discussion from before, I think we both really like Barry, but I would love to see no team needs a wing as a third dude more than that team.

[01:48:47]

Yeah. And the really reliable shooting wing who just can do stuff. Will Barton. Not having him is a huge problem, especially those kind of second group parts where you worry where the offense is consistently. You're absolutely right on Porter because it wasn't just offense. They were seeking him out as a switch guy there for that. And it's just, you know, and he's he's not ready for it. And I really felt like there was a possession on offense that showed Porter still not understanding the NBA game where he drove into traffic, got hit and then passed it.

[01:49:16]

And you get you know, if you put that up at the rim, you're probably going to get the call there. Although if you're a Denver fan, you're looking at the free throw discrepancy, freaking out about it. And I know Murray, look, he got hit on that gobble. Gobble was up vertically, but he came down with his left arm and did foul.

[01:49:29]

Murray this was the biggest play of the game. I was surprised they didn't challenge it, maybe because so much basketball happened after the play. Maybe you can't challenge it. But I thought if you're ever going to challenge a call in a game, that would have been the call it down for pretty obvious foul in the replay.

[01:49:45]

I don't know, the rule of chop my head somebody I don't know that this an edit just can't they don't they. It doesn't have to be a foul call to be challenged. I don't know. I'm still trying to figure out instant replay. All I know is we could have it to decide whether something was a charge or black and slow it down and waste five minutes of our lives for to decide. Somebody leaned by a half inch, but then Murray gets fouled in the biggest play of the game.

[01:50:08]

We can't review that. So I would say they're still in the workshop on that one.

[01:50:13]

All right. What? Oh, I just want to look it up. Yeah, they can't they can't challenge it if it's not called. Well, I wish you could challenge places like that, like if we're going to have challenges. I guess I just don't understand the point of the conditional challenge for this thing that slows down games for four minutes and in certain cases like charge versus block, that's such a blink blink call. I would much rather see stuff like the Murray stuff get challenged, like, hey, my guy got fouled on that play.

[01:50:44]

I want I want to replay you missed it. And now they're down to and Utah has to make a play at the end. So anyway, I would rather the hostile act thing just go away because it's a hostile act like five percent of the time. So let's just get the five percent wrong and keep it moving.

[01:51:00]

Yeah, they should really take a look at every review they've done over the course of the year and almost like break it down with advanced metrics. What was a good idea? What was worth that wasn't worth it because I hate it. I hate the break. I hate to break in the game. It got a little quicker during the quarantine, but it still sucks.

[01:51:16]

Speaking of quarantine, before we go, we'll start a little quarantine corner on Sundays where we're heading toward toward a halfway through month six. Here is really months. People just people are just kind of get used to being whatever their version of where it is. I mean, for me, it's what's it been like for I power walk everyday around L.A. for two and a half hours a day? Did you think at this stage of your life you'd be power walking?

[01:51:47]

I used to like to power, OK, but I would only do it for an hour. Now I just like I schedule calls around it. Everyone and everyone. I work with that ringer and Spotify, if I'm on the phone, they know I'm usually walking around the Google Hangouts where I'm just kind of holding the phone and people are just looking at sky and trees and it's, you know, otherwise I'd be going nuts. Just be around, you know, my family.

[01:52:11]

We've been around each other for five and a half months now. It's getting a little gamey. Get a little game with Ben starting to yell at him.

[01:52:18]

Now, I would not like to see want to go to school really badly now at this point. Yeah, he really misses his friends. We are the big thing for him is he just changed rooms. He moved from his room to the guest room. It was just a just a huge power move.

[01:52:34]

Power decorated it to ask. Now he's just like, I'm doing this. I want my own bathroom. It's happening. And and that was it. And it's just I think everybody's starting to get a little punchy. Six months in. What's it been like for you? I haven't left Manhattan Beach in six months.

[01:52:52]

Wow. That's for any reason. That's an unheard of stretch. Now, I did go to Mammoth for two nights, OK? And I moved. So that was a big reason why I don't think I went anywhere. And you and I talk pretty regularly. And I kept I actually had a bag packed not to go back, but I had a bag packed for almost a month where I kept going. All right, just get in the car. I drive up to Montana, do a mountain stretch.

[01:53:16]

But I just my fear was, first of all, because I had moved I had a million things that I had to do to get the move done. And as I'm sitting here in August, the move still is one hundred percent done because it just whatever takes time. I can't imagine having a wife because it'd be all sorts of accessories that are beginning wrong for the house. But I regret not getting in the car and doing anything because now I'm I'm just not used to never going anywhere.

[01:53:38]

But then again, I don't know if I can get on a plane. I can't get on a plane and visit my my parents at this stage because I would hate if I ended up getting something on the plane ride over and then I was the reason somebody else got sick. So that's part of it. And I was always afraid if I went on some road trip, like, what would the town's be like?

[01:53:53]

But I don't know if you feel this way, we probably still feel it more in L.A. County or the the new normal, because it's not normal yet. But I'll see footage from other cities and go, well, wait a minute, is it totally normal in these other places? And I think it is. I think some places I've just decided I'm not making like Florida jokes about the beach or any of that. But I've I've just noticed different places where my friends live and they go, yeah, it's actually been pretty standard other than going to a packed bar, which, you know, most most of my friends at this stage, it's not even something that I really do, except for maybe, you know, the boys weekend or, you know, some kind of golf day that goes a little bit later.

[01:54:29]

But I I've never been, I think in one place this long since I was in my 20s when I couldn't afford to go anywhere. New York City seems to be the one place that's out of out of all the places we have in America that's been changed the most. A lot of people fleeing from their rents are dropping. There's there's been more crime in certain areas and things like that. And, you know, a lot of people are just leaving New York.

[01:54:58]

And you have friends committed because.

[01:55:01]

I do. Yeah. I have friends of friends that both friends that are lucky enough to have an escape plan.

[01:55:06]

But I, I know I know multiple people that just said, fuck it moved and moved to New Jersey or Connecticut or they're just out.

[01:55:14]

So I'll be interested to see how long that takes. I think New York's pretty resilient, but there have been stories recently about people wondering, is New York going to bounce back from this with all the restaurants that have closed and the inability of, you know, a subway driven culture which now who wants to be in a subway, all the elevators, all the big office buildings, and then, you know, people thinking like Monday through Friday driving into New York City or commuting to New York City, you can spend time in an office when we're learning in real time that you can get a lot of your job done at home.

[01:55:51]

What's the point of that? Why why even do that? Maybe you could just work from home, go to the office one day a week, so it does feel like there there's patterns now that are shifting that will stay in place for in at least some degree after all this stuff comes back. Yeah, I know.

[01:56:09]

I can't even compare myself to anybody, you know, sitting here saying, oh, I haven't been able to go anywhere when I know that work is fine. So I'm really I don't want to make it sound like I'm complaining. It's just a change in marketing because I, I do feel bad for the people that are wondering whether it's going to end. But I also I wonder how many of the companies I feel like some of the tech companies looked at a little bit like college football, where once one conference was like, hey, we're done this fall.

[01:56:33]

It felt like there's a bunch of announcements from the biggest companies in tech that have just said no office work until June of next year.

[01:56:42]

And it did make me wonder, does that is that because it actually makes a little bit more financial sense or is it a liability? I mean, I don't know. I mean, I can read on it, but it doesn't mean I trust what I'm reading.

[01:56:52]

But there's there's liability stuff that gets removed and then, you know, it is cheaper to you don't have to you could cancel your parking and do subtle things like that. You could you know, you have leases for, let's say, 20 floors in an office. Maybe you just do a lease for five of the floors, all that stuff.

[01:57:12]

I there's again, I just think people now realize something that I probably knew a little earlier than some people just because I had been working from home a lot. And it is easier to do stuff at home sometimes, like the office is great and I, I miss some stuff with the ringer, like just a spitball sessions and just being able to be in the room with people, you know, meeting with salespeople. There's some real advantages to being in the room.

[01:57:38]

But for the most part, you can patch this together by like 80, 90 percent, at least for what I do for a living.

[01:57:45]

Yeah, I would miss it, though. And I do think you're this way. And it's been lucky enough to have the freedom of, OK, maybe I don't have to be in the office five days a week. But, you know, when people are like, why do you like living in Connecticut? I said, well, I actually don't hate West Hartford. I just want to do something different at that time. But I would if I were still at ESPN, I would really miss being in the studio all the time, going in like it gave me energy.

[01:58:08]

I would show up. It didn't matter what the day was, it didn't matter anything that was going on in my life, at least for this profession. And I understand, you know, when you're not on air, it's a little different. But counting down, I'd be in my office, I'd be writing out stuff, make a couple of phone calls, call in Cerutty, double check with something, and then be like, OK, are we good to go?

[01:58:25]

And there's just an energy around it where the worst day wasn't that bad.

[01:58:30]

It was pretty good. And if I were doing five days a week and I know that they brought back some of the studio stuff, but a lot of it's still pretty remote and there's some split screen stuff. I would I would miss that so much. And I look, I know I wasn't at the ringer all the time, but I still liked going up once a week because you felt like you were a part of something. Right. And I'm sure a lot of people feel that way.

[01:58:52]

Yeah, it's weird, like we did that lottery show on Thursday that I actually thought was really fun and it's, you know, it's really hard to do a four person zoom. We're doing something with Roger for the first time and all that. We pulled it off. It would have been more fun if the four of us were together. And I think it's just easier to do media. It's easier to do the stuff we do if you can see each other and play off each other and just different energy.

[01:59:16]

But I think from an just an office standpoint and meetings and things like that, like we got to Spotify, you know, they bought us and it became official was like eight days before the pandemic hit. And, you know, we're trying to get all this stuff done. And meanwhile, it's we haven't really met any of these people in person. It's just when you think about it, it's really I like a couple of my bosses I had met already and a couple other people.

[01:59:41]

But for the most part, it's all people I've only seen on Zoom like I'm looking at you now. And it's like, man, this is on the one hand, weird. On the other hand, weird that this is pull off a ball, you know, like you're integrating this whole side into what we're doing. I'm learning all these things, and yet I'm never in an office with anybody. So I don't know. You have no choice about the future?

[02:00:04]

Yeah, we have no choice. But it's actually, like, workable. There are so many things just in life you go with that can't happen, that would never work and you go, well, do you know that? I mean, it's just easy to be dismissive of it and everything. A lot of stuff that's happening now like, oh, that's not going to work. I mean, Manhattan Beach is kind of interesting because definitely some places went out of business, but now it's almost like a European town at night because they've just said, all right, we're building all this outdoor seating, forget the parking spaces.

[02:00:28]

So it's become even more localized here than it already was. But if you walk around in a Friday or Saturday night, it feels like you're walking through some small European town because of all the seating's part of it. You're like, oh, it's kind of cool. But, you know, like everybody, you have these moments where you you kind of miss the normalcy of everything.

[02:00:43]

So what's the gym situation like for you? I'm getting a lot of questions about that for you.

[02:00:47]

Well, there was the equinox did open for a little stretch there, and I was a little on the fence about it. And I go, you know, I'm going to go and see what it's like and. It was it was weird because it wasn't busy, but then you weren't required to wear a mask while you're working out. So like every girl that got done up that I saw was was not wearing a mask and they were all younger. So I was like, wow, that really surprised me.

[02:01:09]

And I wore a mask every time. And then I never thought I'd like working out at home, but I just in the new place, I have a garage. It's it's pretty decked out. I put together as much stuff as I can. I have this new trainer who's a buddy of mine from college, not high school. I don't to high school.

[02:01:24]

And it's I'm in a perfect routine, but I actually like it now. I used to be a big afternoon guy and now until my day starts with putting myself through something I'm not right. So pretty much I wake up, I look at a few things and some work emails, just like you do deal with booking the show and all that kind of stuff. And usually by eight or nine, I'm ready to go, but I don't open the garage door so that people can see me.

[02:01:47]

I noticed that a lot. Manhattan Beach, where people keep the garage door open to kind of, you know, hey, I'm in here and I'm I'm very focused, although I usually go up and I throw up in my mass today. That was disgusting. Oh, my God. Yeah.

[02:01:59]

I had like, one of those cayenne pepper and lemon juices to get the day going because, you know, it. And I was doing this new kind of high tempo thing and it was really messed me up. And I threw up cayenne lemon water juice into my mask while I was wearing it. So that sucked.

[02:02:14]

That sounds awful. I like that you're working out in your garage like Spacey in American Beauty.

[02:02:20]

Less creepy, like a less creepy spacey. I don't want to be compared to Spacey. Everyone I didn't even know he's a lot of you brought up anyway.

[02:02:31]

But there's nothing better than trying to portray a character in a movie or a TV show who thinks he's getting it back a little bit, where he's on just a Joe Weeder, plastic plates with sand in him, bench press and all the weights are stupid and it's like a pyramid at both ends. And then he's just doing a couple little reps and he's like, all right, I am fucking back.

[02:02:53]

I am running out of movies to watch. Last night, I watched The Vanished, starring Thomas, Gene and Hatch and Jason. How does that happen? Give me the thought process of serving and then landing on that.

[02:03:08]

It was a new movie. I was so fascinated by the threesome of Thomas Jane and Haertsch and Jason Patric, all of whom, you know, it's like when when the Mavs are trying to get, you know, LeBron in 2014. And eventually you just have to settle for DeAndre Jordan and a couple others. And I I've been very open about this many times. I'm always in on a kidnapped movie. OK, all right, give me back my son, I got it.

[02:03:36]

If somebody is taken, I'm at least give me a chance. So it was also directed by Peter Facinelli, Jennie Garth's ex-husband.

[02:03:45]

So that was a major problem for me, because if it's written and directed by Peter Facinelli and like. All right, this from a comedy standpoint, this might be get it. It was exceedingly watchable and somebody got kidnapped. And that's just where I am with movies right now because I don't know what they're doing.

[02:04:03]

Like they keep showing that tenet that the Tennen commercials, which has been coming out for three months now, and it seems like it's finally coming out and it's like the first real movie that feels like it's come out like three months where it's like, oh, this is actually a movie they spent real money on with real actors and real director.

[02:04:21]

I'm starting to think that's the movie that Christopher Nolan is never going to come out. Yeah, like that was the next level that Nolan went to where there is no movie, there's just clips and it's going to go on for two years and then you're going to have to piece it together. There's going to be some mail and kit. It's real high level stuff. At least that's a guess right now.

[02:04:38]

Well, I think they're going to stack it so that all the movies come out in like December four to be eligible for Oscars. Like they're basically hoarding all these, hoping that it's going to be normal before December, but then it's not going to be. And they're just all of a sudden, like 30 good movies are going to come out in the span of two weeks. It's going to be amazing.

[02:04:57]

Can I ask you a kidnapping related story? Yeah. If Ben were kidnapped, would you give it a few days?

[02:05:06]

I think they would give them back. He would just wear them down like, hey, guys, this house sucks the hell there's no video games. You have no pop tarts. Fucking Christ, this place sucks.

[02:05:21]

Jesus, he's all excited because, you know, Madden's coming out Tuesday. That's right, I'm hoping to get some codes for some listeners to see in the Mars on the cover, and mama already had to sit out two practices in a row mysteriously for reasons that remain unclear. This weekend, there was like some tired arm rumors. Nobody knows what's going on.

[02:05:42]

So Thomas thing was interesting. I started to get to the point like, hey, does anybody think maybe it's Earl Thomas' fault, right?

[02:05:49]

Anyone? Well, it seems like the Patriots would be a logical suitor for him. Considering they don't have Chung, we going to get and have all this cap space we get to, you know, we should do is we should call, he'll do it, too, because we should just zoom Cowherd in on one of the next ones and have you and him go at about the Pats are tanking. That's that's his dumb mistake of all time. The pattern goes like 11 and five or 12 before they are well in that division.

[02:06:21]

Why would they ever. It's just not Belichick. If you guys really think that he's going to. He Belichick would never want four and 12 on his resume in the first year post Brady. Never.

[02:06:31]

He's just by him being on the sideline where eight and eight. I don't even care who's on the team. And then if Cam, who has looked good by all accounts, can give us like a B or a B plus, now it's 11 and five. I'm not worried, I got to say, my guard is up with this football season, though I still have not like I haven't done any fantasy homework yet. I'm just starting to get emails from my buddy Gus, who runs the Picts League, I'm in the two commissioners, the fairness of the exam and starting to sniff it out.

[02:07:01]

But nobody wants to fully admit this is about to happen. And we're talking it's like, what's today's date? Like the twenty. Twenty third. Twenty third. Yeah. We were three weeks away, right, two weeks away. Yeah, a little less than three, right. And there's no preseason, so it's all out of whack. But this is seems like it's going to happen. And I I just can't wrap my head around it. I I always thought the NFL would at least try and I would think it's a little bit more.

[02:07:34]

Containable, yeah, we got Texans, chiefs, September 10th, God, that seems it seems September 10th, that's 20 days from now. That's amazing. I saw Amarnath starting fantasy football. I mean, I was listening to our fantasy pod that we had, that's the only thing. So I kind of know what's going on. Have the chiefs, the chiefs running back with the three names, seems like the guy he's going to be the hot guy this year is going to go way too high.

[02:08:01]

Yeah, way too high. Or for twenty dollars more than he shot everyone because Damian Williams is sitting out and everyone's talking about how awesome it is. But it seems like he's got the buzz already. Yeah, that's the thing about fantasy.

[02:08:14]

And look, fantasy's awesome. I'm not being anti fantasy guy, but over the years whenever I would look at some of the draft averages on people, there were just always be this running back. Like if SLAC didn't go second and you go, do you really want to take Eddie Lacy ahead of every other player except for two because you're projecting him to do something that he's never done before? That's the part. And I think it definitely was with the running backs because back then you'd always have to find the running backs and now it's not even worth it.

[02:08:38]

Right. You're probably just better off taking receivers and quarterbacks and trying to piecemeal it. But yeah, Clyde, Clyde Edwards earlier is going to go to high. My strategy is I was wanted an awesome quarterback. So whether I'll take like four of them or I'll just take, like, the Mahomes person, you're like Gruden.

[02:08:54]

I just I just hate not having a good quarterback in fantasy. It's like me. Yeah. Yeah. Just plus you can always like, patch together the other pieces that Batman trailer.

[02:09:06]

I didn't see it, you didn't watch it. Now who's Batman now you're your daughter's former favorite Twilight actor. I remember you writing about him, Arpad, yeah. He a man, yeah, he's Batman, and the trailer looks incredible, so we shall see, but I just I want to know the answer. I'll die before I get it. How many? Batman's is too many Batman's because it's pretty unbelievable how often that can be recreated. And I'm going to watch it, you know, I mean, don't get me wrong.

[02:09:39]

I'm going to watch it.

[02:09:39]

But I don't know, is there ever any been anything like that from a content standpoint where you could just keep coming up with that same angle on a storyline? I mean, they remade the Spiderman thing, but I guess I had a lot to do with the studios. I don't know that much about it, so I'm not gonna pretend that I do. But I looked at the trailer and just it just dawned on me, this is unbelievable.

[02:09:59]

Like the Nolan Batman's the first two especially, but the second one.

[02:10:03]

The first two or the second one of my favorites, second century.

[02:10:07]

It's one of my favorite all time movies. And you go now, you want to follow that? That's like following Sabon. It's weird because when I was growing up. The old Adam West Batman, I used to love those because this indicated where Burgess Meredith was the penguin and Julie Newmar. We didn't know any better either to his cool and colorful look different.

[02:10:29]

There was always good fights and all that stuff. But then then it became kind of ironically fun in the 80s to remember those shows. But then all of a sudden they were making Batman with Nicholson as the Joker and 89. And it was a huge deal that felt like one of the biggest movies of the decade that they were doing that and Michael Keaton was going to be Batman, all that stuff, and that was like, what, nine Batman go?

[02:10:54]

And that was in college when that happened. And since so they did think it's like nine. All right. So they did because first two volumes in one Clunies and one. OK, so wait a minute. Wait a minute. That's for Ketan Keaton.

[02:11:09]

Val, you just said Clooney might have been in two.

[02:11:15]

Now I don't want one. Should we get it on this? All right. So three with bail, that's seven. And then you're forgetting about Affleck. Right. So it's eight eight, but was there a second one that he's part of? Yeah, those league sort of, yeah. The nine, yeah.

[02:11:32]

I wasn't as locked in on those, I'll admit. I hate to say that about Ben to. Don't tell them I said that I was fired up, that he got the giant paycheck. But yeah. How's he doing? You guys talking a lot lately? Well, he's got he's got we're not talking and no, he's got the new girlfriend is dating the girl from knives out.

[02:11:50]

Yeah, no, I'm excited for him. He looks great in some of these paparazzi pictures I've seen. He looks looks like his shoulders are really coming in again.

[02:11:56]

I always think I was talking to somebody about how weird because we have two of our kids are like almost exactly the same age. But to have the new girlfriend who's like thirty one. But you have a daughter who's 15. And I just like being in that situation of imagining how those interactions go and how judgmental the 15 year old girl can be about stuff like that, insensitive and just how that would be harder to navigate than being Batman.

[02:12:27]

Like, honestly, all that stuff, how to how to ingratiate the new kind of step mom figure into it. But she's some hot 30 year old actress. I just can't imagine how that goes.

[02:12:38]

I probably don't have to worry about that either. So that's not that's not on my list of things. What which celebrity has surprisingly goes to do during the quarantine and which celebrity won't leave you alone? With celebrities ghosted me that I don't know which one is set. Which one of you sent to text to that? Now you're like, Oh, so I'm not going to text Jon Hamm a third time. Is that how it goes? Like I have I have a celebrity right now where I think he's gotten to text in a call.

[02:13:09]

And I thought we've been pretty close for a long time.

[02:13:12]

And now I know Howard and I are cool and would go on the show every now and then. So I don't think I think the staff likes me coming on the show because I give them a given the business, the WHATFOR every now and I haven't been invited on lately because every time I come on it's like a ten eight round for cement's.

[02:13:29]

And I think after I think he loses his confidence, after a while I come in hot, I make fun of the joy was always on my side and I, I just don't think he likes it that much. I like Joy.

[02:13:41]

She's been she's really good. Yeah. Yeah. She was fun the last time I went on because every cowherd made like three different questions. They turned into like a therapy analogy. And then at the last one I go is are you are you all right? Are you right? What's going on? And he's doing great.

[02:13:58]

I mean, he was laughing it off, but I was like, we get a lot of therapy. We yeah.

[02:14:01]

We need to do that. We need to zoom. We should have some face offs.

[02:14:05]

Now, at the end of some of these is Sunday night. Nobody's doing anything. It's a good idea, I assume. Crash. Yeah, let's do that. Well, I'll I'll set up the Cowherd one and I'm just going to sit back, get my popcorn.

[02:14:15]

All right. Good seeing you. So you got two pods this week and then I'll see you Sunday night. I have no idea what's in store for a Sunday night. We could be like talking about game two of six series or a couple of these series might have gone to seven. Who the fuck does he know when they're starting South Raptors any of this?

[02:14:34]

When we first started the quarantine pods, it was all right. One book review. One one television recommendation. Oh, yeah. And then we should do at least one kind of TV. It doesn't have to be three. And you know, what we should do is we should do a rewritable because I finished the first SNL book from the Lorne years before he hands it over. Oh yeah. And I finished the book. You said it was one of the best oral histories ever.

[02:14:58]

It's it's not like a straight oral history, but it's unbelievable. It's great. So it's actually not a total oral histories. Just let it go. It's like a book book, but. Yeah, but like, how great was that Chevy Chase chapter? The Chevy Chase deal where he, like all of these guys, are fairly unknown, yeah, at the beginning and Lorne has this vision, if there's one thing I take from that whole book is that Lorne, who hadn't had any real success in the United States, he's a Canadian guy.

[02:15:24]

He had married the daughter of a pretty famous television person in Toronto. And he had done some kind of standup sketch stuff. And he shows up to NBC and acted like he was he was Christopher Nolan today walking into the studio like Lorne. I don't even know if he's 30 when the thing starts. Maybe he just turned 30. The confidence from that book like it was a lesson in there where you just show up going, yeah, I'm the fucking man.

[02:15:49]

Like, this is how we're doing it. And I can't believe he actually got away with. And then he would he would every time there'd be a problem about budget or stage or anything he wanted to do, he'd be like, I'm going to quit.

[02:15:58]

And then they just want him to quit. And I had no idea he had actually finally bounced after like five years. But Chevy, as you said, and I'll let you tell it better than I will, but from Chevy in that first year to go from, we'll see how this works out, where he was going to be a writer. He wasn't he had to be one of the actors and they just loved his energy in the writers room. And he was kind of pitching sketches to be accepted, to be on TV.

[02:16:22]

And then his ascension to that year is it's a weird because it's a perfect time for that. I don't know I don't know that anybody could become that famous that quickly. Back then, 1975, I did a pod with Lorne in his office. I think in 2014 we talked a lot about that first year because I was so fascinated by those guys becoming from going from anonymous to really legitimately famous, where like 20 million people are watching those shows and the ratings are bad, by the way.

[02:16:55]

And the ratings weren't even what they would hope they would have been, but it was working. Right. But even back then, if you had any any show, you were getting watched by 10 million, 12 million people, but by like those 20 million for them in the beginning.

[02:17:08]

By the second year, it was thirty, which is what we get for the Super Bowl now. But Chevy went from, you know, weaseling his way not weaselling, but like maneuvering his way on to be on the show to within ten weeks. He's is this the next Johnny Carson on the cover of New York magazine? And everywhere he's going in New York, people are pointing at him and saying, hey, Chevy Chase, you're not and all that stuff.

[02:17:31]

And I don't remember. Fame just doesn't work that way anymore.

[02:17:35]

No, no way was it was. You would have to be so established to achieve that kind of fame, and of course, it was entirely different and Lauren hit that note perfectly, that we're going to do something on television that's never really been accepted before because it was on late at night on a Saturday, he got away with all the stuff that actually as it plays out in the book, you can't believe, like all these fights he would have with the censors and he'd always again get his way because he had like one main NBC act that mattered with the juice that always kind of back him.

[02:18:01]

And then Chevy leaves after one year.

[02:18:04]

Which I think is the easy thing to forget, and I love the Bill Murray part of it, because Bill Murray is always been somebody for me where it doesn't really matter what he's doing. I just think he's funny. And there's there's like Bill Murray where he's going nuts and there's a subtle Bill Murray. But it's it was bombing it. He wasn't funny and people didn't like it. And then they even did this weird break. The fourth wall thing with him where he does this monologue where he starts asking people to laugh more at his jokes.

[02:18:29]

And, hey, I'm sorry, I'm Bill Murray. It really mean a lot if you would laugh and that, like, totally bombed. And they're thinking they're going to have to get rid of the guy. And then just this one skit, that shower skit clicks and he starts doing a little bit more of his goofy sketch stuff. Are you done in Chicago? And it totally works. But like Chevy and Bill almost get into a fight. And then everybody thought that Bill was kind of a tough kid because he was from a place in Chicago where he was fighting his whole life.

[02:18:54]

And then the Belushi stuff is the bluesy stuff is worth it. Just for the book.

[02:18:59]

Bush's stuff's amazing. We did the Caddyshack pie last week. We're talking about how Chevy and Bill Murray in the same movie and they hadn't seen each other since they got in a legit fight at SNL and Chevy came back to host the books. Great. It's by Doug Hill and Jeff Landgrab. I think it is. And I just I think it's just called Saturday Night. I think it's available on Apple Books.

[02:19:23]

It's one of my favorites. It's a good read. The Eddie Murphy stuff's good, too. All right, Rosillo, I'll see you in a week. All right. Sounds good. All right, don't forget, we watch the bulls on Monday night. We're doing 40 year old Virgin, thanks to Spotify, thanks to Home Depot, we're decorating. Your home is now easier than ever before. They offer free delivery on select items, 45 dollars or more.

[02:19:48]

And now for a limited time, 10 percent of the stores you love when you use code.

[02:19:52]

Bill Simmons, one zero at checkout. Bill Simmons 10 ballot on select items only online. But exactly. Look for and more at Home Depot dotcom decor.