Basketball, Nikole Jokic, Steph Curry discussed on The Rich Eisen Show


And to basketball world has waited sure as the tractors and haters have waited very patiently for him to have some sort of decline and steep drop off and he's held off father time for so long now and what he's doing in his 20th year is remarkable. It's remarkable. And he's in some ways the same way that Tom Brady did it at the quarterback position. LeBron has reset the standard for playing at a high level into your late 30s. I don't think there's any player that has played at this level in their 20th year. JJ real quick about nikole jokic. Can you just put in perspective kind of what we're seeing here? And is it realistic that he could win a third straight MVP for the first time since Larry Bird? Just realistic. Look, I am a fan of analytics and advanced stats. I'm a fan of the eye test. I watched that guy play and it's clear that he's one of the three or four best basketball players in the world. By the way, we have a lot of three or four best basketball players in the world. I think we have more than three or more players in the world. That doesn't mean the talent pool and the league is right now. That game the other night that was on TNT. And I'm just amazed at mind. The closures plays in a way that he knows everything that could potentially happen in a given play. And then he just makes the right play every time. There's no overthinking, there's no agenda. It's like he has slowed down time and it has gotten ahead of everyone else. Everyone else is working at a different pace than him. And he is able to just orchestrate and make plays. If they end up, yes, they end up a top two seat in the west, he's going to have a really good chance at winning his third straight MVP. Yeah, do you think they are the favorite in the west and is this finally the year that the nuggets go on a deep playoff run? Because that's kind of been the thing the last couple of weeks. They're not the favorite in the west. The west has a lot of really good teams. I don't think there's going to be the separation at the top that I think you're eventually going to see. And you have seen a little bit in the east with Boston, Milwaukee, Cleveland also is a really good basketball team. Now the nets are playing great basketball as well. But in the west, there's just too many really good teams. And I don't actually have a favorite in the west, but the team that I think has a really good chance is Memphis Grizzlies. They've played great basketball. They're currently tied for first. They were 9 and three with I had question marks last year to playoffs about them sort of needing a second star along with Ron morant and Desmond in those 12 games proved that he can be that guy. So if he's healthy and jaren Jackson continues to play at the level on both ends of the floor that he's playing at right now, I think Memphis has a really good chance to come out west. And how fun is it watching the pelicans play and finally seeing Zion kind of live up to all that pre draft type? Yeah, I mean, look, it's hard as a basketball fan, somebody who watches games every single night not to have a favorite team to tune into. Yeah, right. I have some favorite teams. The pelicans are one of them. Grizzlies are another. I love watching the warriors play with Steph Curry. The pelicans are such a deep team. And this is where I think they have potentially a real advantage in the playoffs because they have a number of players that could play football positions positions. One game, one series you may want to play heavy drop coverage with Jonas spelling Tunis. Maybe the next series you need more of Larry dance and the ability to switch down to perimeter players. Maybe you need Jose alvarado to play in a night and be a pest of the defensive end. And then they have the wings with Trey Murphy and Brandon Ingram and herb Jones. This is just a really deep team and a fun guy. By the way, I named all those guys. I didn't mention Zion who is playing an unbelievable level. I mentioned the talent pool in the NBA. By the way, I just want to point this out just because I have the numbers in front of me. So on Christmas Day, we've got the 5 to 5 guys who have the best odds to win MVP on drafting sports. We've got all of them playing. We've also got LeBron James. We've also got John morant. We were supposed to get Steph Curry. We were supposed to get Anthony Davis, Zion has even been playing on Christmas. I think about how many great players are in the league right now. It's a great time to be an NBA fan. Well, there's 7 guys averaging 30 points a game. Like, we haven't seen that in a long, long time. Now, and Shay Gil just Alexander, who the casual basketball fan is probably not that aware of. Like, he's another guy who could potentially be an all NBA all star guy in Oklahoma City this year. And they're a pesky team. Them, Houston, Orlando. They don't have great records, but they play good basketball every night and have the chance to beat anyone. Hey, JJ, TJ here. I just want to maybe switch focus to the college game real quick and myself personally is a duke fan. What do you think college sports and more specifically duke basketball is going to look like without coach Kay room in the sidelines for the first time in nearly 50 years? Yeah, it's interesting because coach retired during a very interesting transition period for all of college athletics with NIL and the transfer portal. I've had a number of college coaches say to me, you know, you recruit a kid to sign the kid signs and then you've got to recruit them to stay at the year. And so that's a really, that's a really different dynamic. That college sports have existed in the way that they've existed is because the coaches and the schools and the conferences and the NCAA have had complete control over the players and over the last few years because of NIL because of the transfer portal. They have lost a great amount of control. And so I don't know how or when the transition period ends. And sort of what that looks like. But I think we're going to see a lot of different things happen over the next 5 years, 7 years, whatever it may be. Specifically to duke, I think John Shire is in a great position, he knows the school. He knows the program. He's a great basketball mind. He's clearly a great recruiter. Duke specifically this year's team, I tuned in for a few games. I think with lively and Whitehead being in and out of lineup and being hurt, I think it's really hurt them and they're young. But they certainly have some talent to make some noise in the tournament. You can see them calling that sixers Knicks game on Christmas. You can listen to them on the old man and three podcasts. JJ Redick thanks a lot for the time, man. Thank you guys. I appreciate it. Great conversation with

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