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NBA: Pistons introduce Bower as new GM
"I think the final decision thing gets overblown," Van Gundy said. "What we want is a collaborative process with a lot of hard-working, intelligent people, who are thinking, and then use the process to come to a decision."
Jeff Bower is now the teams general manager, after Van Gundy was hired as coach and team president last month. They both appeared at a news conference, then were available for more informal interviews afterward. Van Gundy was surrounded by reporters almost immediately, and its clear that hes still the face of the franchises next big effort to return to relevance.
But Bower brings plenty of experience at the NBA level to his new job. He was the coach at Marist College last season, but hes been a general manager and coach in the pros with New Orleans.
"Hes done almost everything at the NBA level," Van Gundy said. "Hes been an assistant coach, hes been a head coach, hes been a scout, hes been an assistant general manager, hes been a general manager, so hes got an experience that really allows him to know the NBA on every level of what goes on in terms of basketball operations."
Bower said his coaching experience helps shape the way he evaluates talent.
"Being able to see how players change and the impact that you can have on a players game always kind of kept that thought process in mind, that you can improve players, and that players can get better," Bower said.
Bower was the general manager of the Charlotte-New Orleans Hornets from 2001-03 and again from 2005-10. He also coached the team in 2009-10, going 34-39.
Bower has also been an assistant coach at Penn State and Marist. Van Gundy said their relationship dates to when Bower was an assistant at Marist and Van Gundy was an assistant at Fordham.
"Ive always had a tremendous respect for people who have really had to work their way up the ladder," Van Gundy said.
2015 Kentucky Derby Odds
Kentucky Derby week is one Football Live Betting Lines nfl football betting Online Bingo Sportsbook NFL Lines of the most thrilling times of the year. This race is known as "The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports" for its approximate time length.
Check 2015 KY Derby Schedule May 1 and 24 at Sportsbook.com
Odds to Win 2015 Kentucky Derby
Memphis Grizzlies vs. LA Lakers Betting Odds and Preview
Sportsbook.com Betting Odds: L.A. Lakers -8.5, Total: 202
The Grizzlies look for their third straight win as they head to Los Angeles to face the Lakers in the first of a four-game West Coast road trip. Memphis won by a point at Dallas on Friday and returned home to crush Minnesota by 20 on Saturday. Against the Pacific Division last year, the Grizzlies went 10-8 ATS.
Despite finishing fourth in the league with 103.2 points per game on the road in 2009-10, the Grizzlies allowed opponents to shoot 49.3% from the field and average 106.3 PPG. Memphis will need to shoot well from the floor Tuesday night as it is only averaging 10.7 offensive RPG and will likely be without forward Zach Randolph, who ranked second in the league with 11.7 RPG in 2009-10. Randolph has a bruised tailbone, which limits his jumping ability. He playing status will be determined in Tuesday’s shoot-around, but don’t expect him to play against the Lakers.
Meanwhile, the back-to-back NBA Champion Lakers are 3-0 to start the season and have the league’s second-best point differential (+11.3 PPG). L.A. crushed Golden State by 24 points on Sunday, 107-83, while out-rebounding the Warriors 67 to 48.
The Lakers recorded an impressive 45-8 home record in 2009-10, but the basketball betting crowd didn’t profit as they went 23-29-1 (44.2%) ATS. Los Angeles favored the Under last year against the Southwest Division going Under in 11 of 17 games (64.7%). The Lakers are shooting well from behind the arc this season (40.3%) and are averaging 111.0 PPG. L.A. will be difficult to defend with superstars Kobe Bryant scoring 24.0 PPG in just 32.7 MPG and Pau Gasol shooting 52.5% FG for 25.3 PPG, while grabbing over 10 boards per game.
In the last 26 series meetings in Los Angeles, the Lakers have won 21 straight up, but the Grizzlies are 14-11 ATS. Five of six games have gone under the total in the last three seasons.
This NBA betting trend indicates that the Grizzlies will cover the point spread
Play Against - Home favorites (LA LAKERS) - good 3PT shooting team (>=36.5%) against a poor 3PT defense (>=36.5%), average rebounding team (+/-3 reb/game) against a horrible rebounding team (<=-5.5 reb/game). (35-9 since 1996.) (79.5%, +25.1 units. Rating = 3*).
For those interested in betting on the Grizzlies vs. Lakers ‘total’, this betting trend indicates the ‘under’ is the way to go.
Play Under - Any team (MEMPHIS) - after a blowout win by 20 points or more against opponent after leading in their previous game by 15 or more points at the half.
(107-50 since 1996.) (68.2%, +52 units. Rating = 3*).
To bet on the Grizzlies vs. Lakers game or to scan the NBA betting odds for tonight’s games, head over to Sportsbook.com now.
NBA: Phoenix at San Antonio (9:30E – ESPN)
The Spurs have to win four of their next five games to advance to West Finals and even having its three stars seemingly healthy might not be enough to make that occur. It seems that Phoenix has all of its pieces meshing at this point in time and appears to be a real threat to the Lakers in the Western Conference. With the Spurs in a must-win spot at home in Game 3 of this series, Sportsbook.com oddsmakers have listed San Antonio as a 6-point favorite.
Basketball is five on five with every player having a job to do. Though Tony Parker is coming off the bench, he’s playing starter minutes. (36:05 in Game 2) And even if you take bench scoring in the literal sense, San Antonio was outscored 31-24 by players that came off the Phoenix chairs, which was essentially the difference in 110-102 final.
Parker, Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili have been carrying this franchise for years, unfortunately they can’t do it alone and need more help. This helps explain an 11-25 ATS record revenging a road loss over the last two seasons. Richard Jefferson was more effective in the last contest, but Antonio McDyess and Matt Bonner were non-factors.
Phoenix on the other hand showed the depth of the Chinese Red Army. The Suns starters were a step slow, out of rhythm and playing mediocre basketball as they trailed 30-21 after the first quarter.
Coach Alvin Gentry had just pleaded with his team to give more effort and in came Jared Dudley, Channing Frye and Louis Amundson. Phoenix exploded with increased energy, scoring, rebounding and playing tighter defense. The starters watched as their teammates led the surge on San Antonio and by halftime the game was knotted up at 51.
Dudley in particular was the star of stars. "He was my player of the game -- he made some huge plays for us," Steve Nash said. "He did a bunch of things that more than anything gave us energy and confidence and changed the game and enabled us to come back and tie at halftime just because of his energy and spirit."
San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich seconded that notion: "Jared Dudley changed the whole game. He came in and was a monster. He was committed to the boards, and it was infectious."
The Spurs need this type of player to help the power trio against a Suns’ team that is shining bright with a 20-4 SU and 17-6-1 ATS record since Mar.14. San Antonio is six-point favorites with total of 205.5 and is 8-3 ATS off a straight up and spread loss. This is a conflict they need to take control of throughout and are 10-3-1 UNDER at home vs. teams with a winning road record.
Phoenix has covered eight of last 11 contests as road underdogs and is 17-6 OVER away from Arizona after consecutive games as a home favorite.