Tag Archives: NBA

The Mystery Of NBA’s Arc

Why are there two three-point lines on an NBA half-court?

We tend to think of the three point arc on an NBA basketball court as one continuous line, but in fact that’s not true. There actually are three separate but joined lines that define three-point distance in an NBA game: there’s the actual arc that curves 23 feet and 9 inches away from the center of the basket, and then there’s the straight 22-foot lines that parallel the sidelines on each side of the width of the court. All those lines join at a couple of soft corners to form one continuous stripe that defines three-point range.

OK, that’s all easy to understand; it’s even easier to visualize when looking at the court versus describing it. (You can see all of this laid out inĀ the diagram available at this site.)

What’s not easy to understand, if you pause to think about it, is why that’s supposed to make sense.

Continue reading The Mystery Of NBA’s Arc

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Monday Spites Football

It’s halftime of the Kings-Warriors game as I write this. Tonight’s Dubs game represents the fourth out of the last five Mondays to see the defending NBA champions play a game. The three most recent of those games were home games for the Warriors, meaning they had at least some say in the scheduling of those games; start times for sure, if not the actual dates.

A quick look forward at the schedule shows that the Warriors will also be playing each of the next four Mondays; that is to say, each Monday in December, including the Christmas day matchup against the Cavaliers. That means the team will be playing on all but one Monday in November and December.

So what? So this: the Warriors, and a lot of other teams in leagues other than the NFL, almost never used to play on Monday nights in November and December. This scheduling intrusion indicates that the assault on the NFL’s elevated status continues apace. It means, quite simply, that no one is afraid of the NFL anymore. Continue reading Monday Spites Football

A Muted Sound Of Thunder

On an idle Thursday night, I happened to tune in to the second half of the Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Denver Nuggets game on TNT. To the surprise of seemingly everyone–except yours truly–the Thunder are not playing like the new superteam that they were supposed to be.

The conventional wisdom going into the season would have had the newly reformulated Thunder easily handling the Nuggets. Instead, Denver pulled away from OKC and sent the struggling Thunder to a fourth straight loss. The presumed “big three” of Russell Westbrook, Carmelo Anthony, and Paul George are now looking that much further up at the Nuggets from last place in the Northwest Division.

It wasn’t supposed to be like that, for sure. The apologists are saying that the new-look Thunder just haven’t gelled yet; that once they get to know each other, they will surely right the ship and take their place as at least the third, and maybe even the second, best team in the West.

This result is a surprise, if you look at the thing as adding two All-Stars to a third. However, if you view the new additions, Anthony and George, in terms of accomplishment, the wisdom of the move suddenly becomes much less clear. Continue reading A Muted Sound Of Thunder

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Swap Meet, Or Swap Meat?

So this was a big deal, in every sense of the words.

All of the “hot take” action the last day or so has been directed towards figuring out who got the better of the Cavaliers-Celtics trade. Is Kyrie Irving the piece the Celtics need to push them over the top in the Eastern Conference? Maybe, but then again, maybe not, since half of last year’s successful Boston team will now be suiting up for Cleveland. At this point, it’s hard to say which team will come out on top in that particular two-way battle.

Then again, again, maybe the trade will wind up weakening both teams, now and in the future, enough that neither team winds up the East’s No. 1 seed. Continue reading Swap Meet, Or Swap Meat?