BIG MAD - NBA Playoffs Clean Up, Lefty at the PGA, and Some Housekeeping (5.28.21)
We're all over the place this week!
Right off the bat let’s get the housekeeping out of the way. I’ve been running this newsletter for about six months now, so I feel like I owe you, the loyal reader, a sort of status report and vision for the next six months and beyond.
Big Mad currently has exactly 50 subscribers, which is exactly half of my 2021 goal of 100. At this rate, I will reach my goal by the end of the year. BUT I will not be able to reach that goal without YOUR help. So if you like what you are getting every Friday, the best thing you can do to support me and the newsletter is to SHARE IT!
Fortunately, I have some exciting stuff planned for this summer and beyond for ye old newsletter to try and mix things up a bit.
Starting in June, I am going to be replacing one (1) weekly newsletter per month with a very short podcast. Like 15-20 minutes or so. I am doing this for several reasons. One, I like podcasts and I think the multimedia format is pretty cool. Second, it takes a long time to write these things. Like you I am trying to enjoy my Waxed and Vaxxed summer and I can’t be spending precious hours in front of a computer that I could otherwise be spending outside getting sunburnt. I can cut up a podcast in less than an hour, and I think people will get just as much out of it as the longform ramblings.
I have a couple long-term pieces in the works, which I have started to call EPIC POSTS, that require a fair bit of time and research and legwork to complete. Also starting in June, you can start to expect one (1) EPIC POST in your inbox per month. They will be titled appropriately so you know when they hit.
Ok that’s all the housekeeping. Once again I want to thank you for your continued readership. I hope you have enjoyed reading as much as I have enjoyed writing these things! And of course any and all feedback is greatly appreciated. You can actually reply directly to these emails and I’ll get them.
Alright back to your regularly scheduled posting:
NBA Playoff Clean-Up
So it seems like the West is even more more up for grabs than we might have anticipated. Every lower seed won their first game last weekend, with the exception of the Suns, who might as well have been the lower seed against the Lakers. And I don’t think this is smoke and mirrors, either. The Portland/Denver series is going to be a legit bloodbath. The Clippers might be total frauds, dropping 0-2 to Dallas. And unless the Jazz get Donovan Mitchell back I would put them squarely in the hot seat. Gun to my head, my money is on the Suns right now. If they can somehow dispatch the Lakers they have a relatively smooth ride to the WCF.
Holy fuck that Knicks-Hawks Game 1. I love to rag on the Knicks and their delusional, self-important fanbase, but that game on Sunday was one of the more fun playoff games in recent memory. Trae Young kind of went full heel and I absolutely love it. Him silencing MSG was reminiscent of Reggie Miller hitting my guy Spike Lee with the choke sign after stealing Game 4 of the 1994 ECF. This series is going to be a rock fight to the bitter end.
Thoughts and prayers go out to Lebron James, who performed one of the most bizarre theatrics I’ve ever seen on a basketball court. I don’t even know how to describe it, so I’ll just embed the video.
First of all, CP3 did nothing dirty here, he just blocked out. That’s just good basketball being misconstrued by Twitter Refs as a dirty play because, well, CP3 is a dirty player. Lebron writhes on the court in apparent pain, only to miraculously come-to when a completely unrelated scuffle breaks out across the court. Then, once the scuffle settles down, Lebron saunters over where the dust up occurred and proceeds to sit on the court in that exact spot, reminding everyone that he is the center of attention.
This is your court ordered Celtics take: they are probably going to get swept. The Nets are just unfair. Too much firepower. Had Jaylen been healthy, this might have been an interesting series. I’m sorry but you can’t expect to win playoff games with Jabari Parker getting minutes. Also, I think this offseason we need to have The Kemba Walker Conversation. In big games he is the king of giving you absolutely nothing when the game matters and going crazy the moment victory is out of reach. Finally, Robert Williams III. What else is there to say. I’ve been screaming it from the rooftops that if he’s healthy, he is the center of the future for this team. My dude played through turf toe and flirted with a triple double (no assists) in Game 1. Launch Tristian Thompson into the sun and double down on the Time Lord.
Mickelson Wins the PGA Championship at Kiawah Island
50 year old Phil Mickelson held off Brooks Koepka over the final round Sunday to take home the PGA Championship in historic fashion. He’s the oldest player ever to win the tournament. It’s been thirty years (!) since his first win on tour in 1991. He was a 200-1 longshot to win the tournament. To say this is improbable is sort of an understatement. It’s almost like Tiger winning the 2018 Masters level of improbable.
I am very happy for Phil. Hard not to root for a guy who’s whole golf mantra is simply “hit bombs”. Kiawah was one of the longest PGA Championship courses ever, and gusts off the ocean pushed 20mph all weekend, which kind of played to Phil’s strength in hitting the long ball. He hit a 340 yard bomb on the 17th on Sunday that basically sealed the deal for him.
The weekend also yielded one of the greatest clips ever from runner up Brooks Koepka:
It’s clear that Brooks hates Bryson with every fiber of his being. Brooks was so overcome with hatred that his brain simply ceased to function while in the presence of Bryson. One second he’s talking about putting, the next all he can picture in his minds eye is pummeling Bryson DeChambeau to death with his 7 iron. This might be the best one-on-one rivalry in all of sports right now, not just golf, and it’s the kind of shit that makes sports fun.