The 2014 NBA Playoffs are Coming!

NBA Playoffs

The 2014 NBA Playoffs are just 9 days away, and we’ve got 12 teams that have locked in playoff spots as of 4/10:

Eastern Conference: Indiana, Miami, Toronto, Chicago, Brooklyn, Charlotte and Washington.
Western Conference: San Antonio, Oklahoma City, L.A. Clippers, Houston and Portland.

Who do you think will take home the Championship this year?

Shop for the Holidays at Fanatics!

March Madness Prospects

NCAA March Madness Tournament

The NCAA annual spring basketball tournament is due to start. In what has become one of the biggest sporting events in America, it gives the NBA scouts the perfect opportunity to draft up a wish list of potential draftees. So, which players are we expecting to stand out in the March Madness, and which teams look likely to rock the NCAA odds?

Jabari Parker, Duke

Without a doubt the best collegiate player out there at the minute is Jabari Parker. The son of former Golden State Warriors player Sonny Parker, Jabari has been tipped for a big future in the sport. With a 19.3 Points-Per-Game (PPG) and an 8.8 Rebounds-Per-Game (RPG), Parker is one of the best scorers in the NCAA. He has the required skillset to emulate one LeBron James, who looks set to guide his Miami Heat (11/5 favourites with Titan Bet) to another NBA title. A solid NCAA tournament should see Parker establish himself as the first pick of the draft. With the LA Lakers missing out on the Play-Offs for the first time since 2005, they look the likely side to acquire the Chicago native. They would be fools not to.

Andrew Wiggins, Kansas SF

Alongside Parker, Wiggins is the most exciting prospect that will be entering the draft. If his performances in the Big 12 are anything to go by he should tear up the NCAA tournament. His stats for this season thus far make for very good reading. He has a 17.4 PPG average and a 6.0 RPG average. When Wiggins plays aggressively he is one of the best players to watch. His constant dribbling attack can be too much for opposition defences, while defensively he is very confident in knocking down jumpers. It is a toss-up between him and Parker for the first draft pick, but what is for sure is that both will go on to achieve superstardom.

Julius Randle, Kentucky

At 6-foot-9, Randle is a beast on the court. While he hasn’t managed to keep up with the blistering pace of Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins, he is still a player to keep an eye on.  The 19-year-old is a constant presence on the court and even though his scoring this season has not been overwhelming, he is more than capable of facing up opposition and punishing them. If the Wildcats can have a decent run in Big Dance and Randle improves his 15.0 PPG average then he will be highly sought after.

Gary Harris, Michigan State

The youngster has made the Spartans one of the hottest teams in the NCAA. They enter the Big Dance as fourth seeds. With a 17.1 PPG average his isn’t the most lethal scorer in the draft but his all-round game is very impressive. His off the ball movement is second to none, which makes his point guards job a lot easier, while this season his defensive play and ball handling has improved tenfold. Expect to see Harris move in the first round of draft picks.

Sponsored Video: CNBC Takes You Inside The World Of Sports Betting In ‘Money Talks’

CNBC - Money Talks

CNBC is about to air a new series called Money Talks that pulls back the curtains on the world of sports betting. Now as someone who’s been known to bet on their fair share of basketball games over the years, I’m really curious to check out this show and see how the whole Vegas sports handicapping world works. The show follows Steve Stevens, the self-proclaimed ‘Michael Jordan’ of sports handicapping, who claims his picks are right over 60% of the time!

Each one-hour episode follows Stevens and his agents who sell their picks to gamblers looking for any kind of edge. From small-time bettors to big-time whales who can wager as much as six figures on a single game. This is a world built on high risk, high emotions and high rewards. But in a city like Vegas, with distractions and every imaginable vice, Stevens needs to keep his agents focused on building new business while he entertains big time bettors who come with big bankrolls and even bigger expectations.

Watch the extended sneak peek for Money Talks:

I’ll be tuning in this Wednesday to watch the premiere of Money Talks, will you?

This post is sponsored by CNBC

adidas Unveils Made in March Uniform System for NCAA Basketball

adidas Made in March

adidas unveiled the Made in March Uniform System for the 2014 NCAA basketball postseason. The collection was created to provide teams with adidas’ most advanced uniform system and basketball apparel technology so they can take on the challenges and intense play of March.

Baylor, UCLA, Cincinnati and Louisville will wear short-sleeve Made in March uniforms and Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Notre Dame, Tennessee and Wisconsin will wear sleeveless versions.

Made in March uniforms feature a functional perforated print pattern along the leg of the stretch woven short to enhance breathability and ventilation, keeping players cool as the clock winds down. adidas’ quick-drying jersey technology found in current NBA uniforms along with ClimaCool zones on the chest, back and side, move heat and moisture away from the body to keep the jersey light and dry as players sweat.

To rally fans and spark team unity and pride, several uniforms feature team name logos across the chest, while all jerseys have school mantras selected by the team printed on the inside collar. Several schools will wear new colors exclusively designed for March. Baylor will wear army green as homage to the school’s strong military history, while UCLA dons navy blue and gold inspired by the Los Angeles night skyline. Indiana will suit-up in cream as a nod to the program’s traditional school colors and basketball team’s “crimson and cream” nickname.

The Made in March Uniform System debuts on-court beginning with conference tournament play and fans can grab their Made in March gear at adidas.com and campus bookstores.

adidas Unveils Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s “The Blueprint” Crazy 8

adidas "The Blueprint" Crazy 8

adidas today unveils “The Blueprint” Crazy 8, a limited edition version of the classic Crazy 8 shoe that pays homage to one of the greatest basketball players of all-time, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

adidas interviewed several NBA athletes including Derrick Rose, Damian Lillard and John Wall about what Kareem meant to them and the game of basketball. One response stood out above all the rest; Kareem represents “the blueprint” to greatness as a person, an athlete and as a philanthropist. The names and responses of the NBA athletes interviewed are featured on the sockliner of the shoes.

The blue-based upper is inspired by Kareem’s career at UCLA where he finished his college career with an 88-2 winning record, three NCAA championships and numerous accolades including:

  • Two-time Consensus Player of the Year
  • Three-time first-team All-American
  • Three-time Most Outstanding Player in the NCAA tournament The first-ever Naismith Player of the Year

The upper is constructed of a single piece of synthetic suede with stitching and molded details that highlight the simplicity of the original model. Additional details include a custom Tyvek tongue patch that displays Kareem’s iconic hook-shot and signature. Kareem’s number, 33, is stitched on the heel and toe of the shoe.

You can catch “The Blueprint” Crazy 8 on-court when Kareem’s alma-mater, UCLA, wears them in their game on Thursday, February 13 on ESPN against the University of Colorado. “The Blueprint” Crazy 8 will be available in limited quantities for $133 on February 14 at adidas.com and at adidas in The Quarter in New Orleans for NBA All-Star weekend.

Stay tuned to the adidas Basketball Facebook page for exclusive content and follow adidas on Twitter and Instagram at @adidasHoops with #Crazy8.

adidas Debuts NBA All-Star Footwear Collection

adidas NBA All-Star Basketball Footwear

adidas, Dwight Howard, John Wall, Damian Lillard and others will debut special NBA All-Star editions of the Dwight Howard 4, Crazy 8, Crazy 1 and the all-new Crazyquick 2 at the 63rd NBA All-Star Game in New Orleans. Inspired by New Orleans’ rich culture and the atmosphere of NBA All-Star weekend, the footwear will be rolled out February 12-15.

The Crazyquick 2 uses an all-new QUICKWEB upper to provide increased flexibility and superior fit along with signature Crazyquick outsole technology for increased traction and court feel. The bold “Vivid Berry” and “Solar Slime” NBA All-Star edition features splatter paint print that pays homage to the celebratory spirit of Mardi Gras and will be worn on-court by John Wall of the Washington Wizards (East) and Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers (West).

The Crazy 8 features an aggressive design that follows the form and function of the foot. Originally launched in 1997, the all-new All-Star colorway features bright orange and blue colors and splatter paint print inspired by the architectural and art of New Orleans and celebratory spirit of Mardi Gras and NBA All-Star weekend. The Crazy 8 will be worn by players during the Rising Stars Challenge and NBA All-Star Saturday Night participants.

The Crazy 1 features a curved, aerodynamic upper inspired by luxury automobiles. Originally launched in 2000, the all-new All-Star colorway features bright orange and blue colors and splatter paint print inspired by the architectural and art of New Orleans and celebratory spirit of Mardi Gras and NBA All-Star weekend. The Crazy 1 will be worn by players during the Rising Stars Challenge and NBA All-Star Saturday Night participants.

The Dwight Howard 4 NBA All-Star edition signature shoe will roll-out in a metallic “Blast Purple” colorway for one of the most elite centers in the league – eight-time NBA All-Star Dwight Howard. The Dwight Howard 4 features a SPRINTWEB and TECHFIT upper for enhanced support and lockdown. Crazyquick technology elements include an articulated forefoot with two-way flex zones for increased traction and court feel. A unique take on the traditional purple of Mardi Gras, the metallic “Blast Purple” stands out on the court and gives the superstar center a unique look for the big stage of the NBA All-Star Game.

Stay tuned to the adidas Basketball Facebook page, and follow on Twitter and Instagram with #Crazy8, #Crazy1, #Howard4 and #Crazyquick2

Reebok Classic Launches The Kamikaze I OG Ssneaker

Kamikaze I OG

Today marks the official re-release of Reebok Classic’s famed Kamikaze I OG sneakers!

Lightning struck every time Shawn Kemp stepped on the court. His larger-than-life persona set a new pace for basketball, and his groundbreaking athleticism inspired a shoe just as bold in 1994: The Kamikaze I.

Reebok Classic is bringing back the Kamikaze I at key retailers including Foot Locker, Finish Line, Champs, Jimmy Jazz and reebok.com for $115 (adult) and $90 (grade school).

#THISisCLASSIC