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2014-15 NBA Season Preview: Southeast Division- Changing Of The Guard (Plus Our Eastern Conference Champion Pick)

Here’s a fun fact: Since its creation at the start of the 2004-05 season, only two teams have won this division, and both reside in the state of Florida. The Heat have seven division titles, the Magic own three— none of the other teams have even won this division! In the last decade, this division has produced the Eastern conference

The Hip-Hop Sports Report Podcast 9.30.14

Exactly what in the hell is wrong with Tom Brady and the New England Patriots?!?! Is Brady on the decline or is this actually a Belichick backstabbing? These questions are addressed on the latest podcast! Plus we debut the first ever audio Tale Of The Tape review for Common’s Nobody’s Smiling! Also, statues, napkins and Packers fans are discussed. Music

The Hip-Hop Sports Report Podcast 9.20.14

Copped the iPhone 6, did you?  Well, the first thing you MUST do is go to iTunes and download the latest edition of The Preseason Podcast of the Year! Special guest Andy Roberts joins the show to discuss baseball’s pennant race and the college football landscape. Who wins the World Series? Should Clayton Kershaw win NL MVP? Was Florida St.

Roger Goodell, Adrian Peterson And The Worst Sports Week In Recent History

Never seen anything like this. Ever. Have you? The last week has been as unsavory of a week for sports fans as I can remember. Not since the OJ trial has SportsCenter felt this much like Court TV— and nobody seems to be immune to it. Fans were just starting to get the nauseating taste of the Donald Sterling story

The Winners And Losers From 2014′s Summer In Hip-Hop

Officially, there’s still 19 days of summer left. But Labor Day weekend just passed, so for all intents and purposes, this summer…she’s over. Where does hip-hop stand with the season having now concluded? Let’s take a look at some of the winners and losers from the last three months in the rap world: THE WINNERS: Jay Z Why Jay Z

2014-15 NBA Season Preview: Southeast Division- Changing Of The Guard (Plus Our Eastern Conference Champion Pick)

It’s on you again, playa.

Here’s a fun fact: Since its creation at the start of the 2004-05 season, only two teams have won this division, and both reside in the state of Florida. The Heat have seven division titles, the Magic own three— none of the other teams have even won this division! In the last decade, this division has produced the Eastern conference champion six times. Quiet as kept, this division produced four playoff teams just last year. They can’t seriously pull that off again, can they?

Orlando Magic

This summer the Magic let go the last piece of their 2009 NBA Finals team. Jameer Nelson left Orlando for Dallas, thus officially closing the book (they got rid of the old arena and everything) on a brief, but memorable moment in Magic history. Now the Magic are knee deep in an arduous rebuilding process, one that has seen them also utilize the now ubiquitous method of rebuilding: doubling up on lottery picks in one draft in an attempt to expedite the procedure. The Cavs did it, the Jazz did it, the Hornets did it, the 76ers did it and the Magic have also done it, all within the last four drafts.

Sidebar: The catch with this is hitting on draft picks is hard— hitting on two is twice as hard. And if the talent pool isn’t deep that year, you’re pretty much screwed. Read more

2014-15 NBA Season Preview: Atlantic Division- Managing Expectations

Rondo could have as much of an impact on this season as anyone, but only if he’s traded away.

In a division where there’s two New York teams, a Boston team and a Philly team, it’s important to understand that managing the expectations of a sports team can be a crucial part to steadying the psyche of an organization and it’s fan base. Mismanaged expectations by a coach, GM or team president can result in the media — or worse, twitter — swarming on you. Next thing you know, there’s unanswered questions, disgruntled players, and before you know it, you’re carrying a box to your car while being walked out by security.

You see? Managing expectations! But many teams don’t know any better. Never fear, HHSR is here! Let’s take a look at what we should expect for the NBA’s Atlantic Division for the 2014-15 season.

Philadelphia 76ers

I’ll be brief. I have no idea what the hell the 76ers are doing. Yes, I understand the concept of building through the draft with high lottery picks (I still maintain that there’s no such as “the Oklahoma City model”— complete hogwash). But if your plan is doubling down on the injury prone bigs and or players with overwhelming flaws, lots of luck. Read more

2014-15 NBA Season Preview: Central Division- The Cavs And the Cav-Nots

Lookin like trouble.

It’s long, it’s exciting and it’s as anticipated now as it’s been in several years. No, this isn’t any type of clever innuendo. We’re talking about the 2014-15 NBA Season! The champs are out West, the depth is out West, but all the intrigue is in the East, specifically in the Central Division. Why?

LeBron James is why.

And Kevin Love. And Kyrie Irving. And Derrick Rose. And Jabari Parker. And Paul George’s leg. And Andre Drummond’s social-stalker tendencies.

Sidebar: Note to Mr. Drummond: It doesn’t matter what the circumstances are, if you can Google “your name + stalk” and actually get a result, you’re letting Nas down.

We’ve covered the summer for the Cleveland Cavaliers at great length at HHSR— from King James’ return to his rightful kingdom, to the Kevin Love trade and the real unsung heroes who made it all possible. Yet flying under the radar is the return of another former MVP to his hometown team. Read more

The Hip-Hop Sports Report Podcast 9.30.14

Nobody’s smiling.

Exactly what in the hell is wrong with Tom Brady and the New England Patriots?!?! Is Brady on the decline or is this actually a Belichick backstabbing? These questions are addressed on the latest podcast! Plus we debut the first ever audio Tale Of The Tape review for Common’s Nobody’s Smiling! Also, statues, napkins and Packers fans are discussed. Music features: Talib Kweli and Eric B & Rakim. HHSR Podcast September 30 2014

Kendrick Lamar- i

The wait is over.

Hip-hop’s man of the moment, Kendrick Lamar, returned on the scene yesterday with the release of his highly anticipated song “i”, produced by Rahki.

Early thoughts: The song is much less aggressive than what we’ve come to expect from King Kendrick. The song samples the ’70s soul smash “That Lady”. Actually, the song doesn’t sound as much like a sample as it does a straight rip of the Isley Brothers’ 1973 hit, with some other random instruments thrown in here and there.

Nearly two years ago, Kendrick commanded the attention of all of hip-hop with his classic album good kid, m.A.A.d. city— a concept album that told the detailed story of a young man growing up in Compton in the early 2000s. K Dot’s coming of age tale left the rap world wanting more though, and having now captured its attention, rap is essentially like puddy in the kid’s hands. But what to do with all this power?

Enter “i”, which appears to be a call to action for his listeners. And that action: love thy self. Read more

The Hip-Hop Sports Report Podcast 9.20.14

Via ESPN.com

Copped the iPhone 6, did you?  Well, the first thing you MUST do is go to iTunes and download the latest edition of The Preseason Podcast of the Year! Special guest Andy Roberts joins the show to discuss baseball’s pennant race and the college football landscape. Who wins the World Series? Should Clayton Kershaw win NL MVP? Was Florida St. justified in suspending Jameis Winston a full game? Plus, who’s the one emcee to watch in 2014′s BET Hip-Hop Awards cyphers? Music from A$AP Rocky & Jay Hova!

HHSR Podcast September 20 2014

Tupac & Biggie Linked Once Again By September 13th

Many rap fans hold the date of March 9th in high regard, and rightfully so. Though few seem to remember September 13th as the anniversary of the day we lost a musical and cultural icon. Maybe it’s because Tupac Shakur was gunned down on September 7th and died six days later. It could be because to this day, some people still believe Pac is alive. Regardless, September 13th is the day— 18 years ago today to be exact.

Hard to believe that there are college freshman who weren’t even born when Pac was ruling the rap scene, flipping off cameras, shaking up the establishment…you know, being Pac. Though much of his behavior was sophomoric in those days, he was always a man of great substance and gave a host of poignant interviews during his brief period of fame. And though he lost his life at the extremely young age of 25, Tupac is still remembered as one of the top 5 rappers in the eyes of most all these years later. Read more

Roger Goodell, Adrian Peterson And The Worst Sports Week In Recent History

What the hell happened to sports this week?

Never seen anything like this. Ever. Have you?

The last week has been as unsavory of a week for sports fans as I can remember. Not since the OJ trial has SportsCenter felt this much like Court TV— and nobody seems to be immune to it.

Fans were just starting to get the nauseating taste of the Donald Sterling story out of their mouths before Ray Rice came back to dominate the news cycle. The incredibly disturbing video of him swinging on his then fiancée (twice), dropping her to the floor of an elevator and causing her to hit her head on the railing sent all media — social and traditional — reeling.

As horrific of an event as this was for the NFL (and of course Janay Palmer and the Rice family, but we’ll stick to sports for the purposes of this piece, as much as we can anyway) the fallout was even more crippling. Commissioner Roger Goodell and the NFL’s management of the Rice incident has revealed a startling and sobering truth: either Goodell has lied repeatedly about his (mis)handling of Ray Rice and his knowledge of the story prior to leveling his haphazard punishment, or there’s an appalling epidemic of incompetence going on in the NFL offices.

Read more

HHSR’s Official 2014-15 NFL Playoff And Super Bowl Picks

If you’ve heard The Preseason Podcast of the Year recently, then you’ve already heard our AFC playoff predictions two weeks ago and our NFC picks last week. But in case you didn’t, allow us to extend an olive branch. We’ll give you a mulligan (just this once) and present to you, in written form, our preseason AFC & NFC picks!

AFC Playoffs

AFC East Champion

New England Patriots- They win at least 10 every year. Who in this division could  possibly be better?

AFC North Champion

Pittsburgh Steelers- Tough one to call, but Cincy’s playoff failures catches up to them mentally and Pittsburgh stays healthy for a change. Read more

The Hot 16: The 2014 BET Hip-Hop Award Nominations

The 2014 BET Hip-Hop Awards will take place September 20th, but will not air until October 14th. The nominees were unveiled early this week— here’s a few quick thoughts on the noms, and the award show in general:

1) Location, Location, Location

For the 9 millionth time in a row, the show is in Atlanta. What does it say about the rest of the country’s status within hip-hop — specifically New York — when arguably the most noteworthy award show within the genre is only held in Atlanta? No other city on the east coast could host this show? BET is headquartered in Washington D.C., and Chocolate City gets no love? What that mean?

2) Years In The Game

This is actually the ninth edition of the BET Hip-Hop Awards. Clearly, this is a good look for hip-hop and for BET that the show has remained this successful for this many years, without any major incidents.

3) Drake Dominates

Drake is the leader in the clubhouse with eight total nominations, including all the major categories (Lyricist of the Year, Album of the Year, MVP of the Year and the People’s Champ Award). If he can manage to sweep these categories, it will go a long way towards solidifying Drizzy’s claim as the top rapper on the planet right now. Read more