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Open Floor: SI's NBA Show

Updated 4 days ago

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Hosted by Ben Golliver and Michael Pina, SI’s Open Floor podcast brings you breakdowns of the biggest news, moves and more from around the NBA.

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Hosted by Ben Golliver and Michael Pina, SI’s Open Floor podcast brings you breakdowns of the biggest news, moves and more from around the NBA.

iTunes Ratings

2063 Ratings
Average Ratings
1770
69
52
40
132

Michael saved the show

By Cheeseburglar10 - Feb 13 2020
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Thank you Michael, thank you.

My favorite NBA pod

By scrabblelet145 - Dec 17 2019
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This is easily my favorite NBA podcast. The chemistry between Ben and Michael is excellent!!

iTunes Ratings

2063 Ratings
Average Ratings
1770
69
52
40
132

Michael saved the show

By Cheeseburglar10 - Feb 13 2020
Read more
Thank you Michael, thank you.

My favorite NBA pod

By scrabblelet145 - Dec 17 2019
Read more
This is easily my favorite NBA podcast. The chemistry between Ben and Michael is excellent!!
Cover image of Open Floor: SI's NBA Show

Open Floor: SI's NBA Show

Latest release on Apr 07, 2020

Read more

Hosted by Ben Golliver and Michael Pina, SI’s Open Floor podcast brings you breakdowns of the biggest news, moves and more from around the NBA.

Rank #1: BONUS: Kawhi Leonard is Finally Traded, The Raptors Win Big, DeRozan Heads to the Monastery

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On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver connect for an emergency episode to talk through the many layers of the Kawhi trade. First, they focus on the Kawhi side and why the trade makes sense for both next season's Raptors and the long term outlook in Toronto. Then (12:00): mixed emotions for Raptors fans and DeRozan in the wake of this deal, and whether he'll make another All-Star team in San Antonio. From there (18:00): the Spurs and whether they can surprise some people next season, the murderous West playoff race, and what the past year can teach us about Spurs culture. At the end (38:00): whether Kawhi is a Hall of Famer, whether Tim Duncan should un-retire, the second-best team in the East, and the lost DeRozan takes from Greased Pig Golliver.

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Jul 18 2018

50mins

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Rank #2: Warriors' comeuppance, Trae Young's arrival, Suns' progress

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On today's show, Ben Golliver and Rob Mahoney consider the Golden State Warriors' slow start. Do their early struggles require a reputation revision for Stephen Curry, Draymond Green and Steve Kerr? Is there any hope for their putrid defense? Should they consider trading D'Angelo Russell or Draymond Green? Should they tank? Then, Ben and Rob shift gears to answer questions from the Open Floor Globe on Trae Young's All-Star chances, the Phoenix Suns' sudden competence, Dwight Howard's promising first week and Deandre Ayton's 25-game suspension. 

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Oct 29 2019

1hr 5mins

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Rank #3: Draft Winners and Losers, Complicated Pelicans Emotions, Celtics and Lakers Updates

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On today’s show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver are live from New York City where they recap the 2019 NBA Draft. First: The Wizards and the dawn of the Rui Hachimura era, RJ Barrett landing in New York City, and the Suns once again wandering in the middle of nowhere. Then (22:00): The impact of Twitter and NBA moratoriums on draft night, examining the Pelicans and their post-Zion strategy, and talking through the new era with Ja Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr. in Memphis. At the end (55:00): What the Darius Garland pick means for the Cavs and Collin Sexton, the Hawks get the best both worlds on the wing, the Celtics had a complicated week but a good draft, and the Lakers are still looking for max cap space.

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Jun 21 2019

1hr 16mins

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Rank #4: Kawhi and the Clippers Earthquake, Winners and Losers Around the NBA, Disaster for the Lakers

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On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver are live in Las Vegas and processing the Kawhi Leonard/Paul George news as it happened Friday night. Topics include: a massive win for the Clippers, Kawhi as Calipari, OKC scrambling to recover after Paul George's trade demand, a win for NBA fans everywhere, LeBron James and what this week means for him, the state of Westbrook, increasingly disastrous free agent news for the Lakers, and at the end, an important tutorial in going viral on the sidelines of summer league.

Sports Illustrated is conducting an audience survey to better serve all of our listeners. It will only take a few minutes of your time and it really helps us improve our shows. Please take our survey here: si.com/openfloorsurvey

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Jul 06 2019

1hr

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Rank #5: Celtics cruising, Sixers stumbling, Carmelo resurrected, Paul George shining

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On today's episode, Ben Golliver welcomes his new co-host: Michael Pina, NBA writer for SB Nation. With Open Floor's bi-coastal balance restored, Ben and Michael dig into two teams at the top of the Eastern Conference: the Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers. Are the Celtics as good as their record indicates? Does their hot start, coupled with Brooklyn's challenges, shine a new light on Kyrie Irving? How does Philly fix its offense? Are Al Horford and Joel Embiid a fit? Is the clock ticking on Ben Simmons again? From there, Ben and Michael take questions from the Open Floor Globe on Carmelo Anthony's resurrection with the Blazers and Paul George's strong start for the Clippers.

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Nov 19 2019

1hr 14mins

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Rank #6: Thanksgiving Special: Family Arguments and Adjustments to the SI Top 100

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On a special post-Thanksgiving episode of the pod, Sharp and Golliver talk through the first month of basketball and discuss who's risen the furthest in SI's Top 100 rankings, and who's fallen. Topics include: the rebirth of Boogie in New Orleans, Karl-Anthony Towns in Minnesota, Robert Covington's meteoric rise in Philly, Russell Westbrook's place in the top 10, market corrections for every Cavs player not named LeBron, properly rating Kyrie in Boston, Kristaps Porzingis vs. Draymond Green and Paul George, Ben Simmons vs. Kyle Lowry, James Harden's place in the NBA hierarchy, Joel Embiid vs. the top 10, and some long-awaited clarity on Devin Booker. 

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Nov 24 2017

58mins

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Rank #7: The Rookie Golden Age, Wolf Season, Carmelo Hall of Fame

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On today's show Sharp and Golliver begin by discussing the Wizards let down against the Lakers, then jump into questions. First (5:00): How impressive have the Celtics young wings been, and what does it mean for the future? What about the rest of the rookies in a historically loaded draft class? Then (16:00) they discuss the state of Ben Simmons, Markelle Fultz, and Brandon Ingram. From there (33:00): they talk more about the Wizards and their Wolf Season, Hassan Whiteside in a smallball world, and the pros and cons of the Boogie experience. At the end (44:00): Carmelo and his hoodie, Carmelo vs. Dwight for the Hall of Fame, the Spurs and Kawhi, Klutch Sports conspiracy theories, and the next move for Giannis Inc. 

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Oct 27 2017

1hr 8mins

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Rank #8: The coronavirus & the NBA schedule, airing old grievances

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina discuss the coronavirus and its ongoing impacts on the NBA schedule. Players have been sent home and the NBA is on hiatus for at least two months. Can a postseason be salvaged? Should a postseason be salvaged? An Open Floor Globe member from Denmark sounds the alarm about what's coming for the USA, while another from France correctly suggests that this crisis is an opportunity in disguise. From there, Ben and Michael circle back to take questions on heated debates from past shows. If LeBron James supposedly isn't as famous as we think, why is he so well-known in an underground gold mine in the Australian outback? Should an Orlando Magic fan seek revenge after his girlfriend cheated on him during the Slam Dunk Contest? Should we add an oddities wing to our plans for making a statue garden at the Hall of Legends? 

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Mar 17 2020

1hr 7mins

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Rank #9: The Knicks Go All In, Kristaps Porzingis Goes to Dallas, Dell Demps Answers His Phone

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On today’s show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver try to process news of the Kristaps Porzingis Mavericks trade with some winners and losers. Topics include: what just happened and why, the difference between Porzingis and Giannis, whether the Knicks are leaking diva details to justify this move, why the deal is a massive win for the Mavs, why Knicks fans get no sympathy and all fan amnesty applications will be denied, and checking back in with the state of the Anthony Davis trade, the Lakers, Pelicans management, and whether Bradley Beal will be the next star to ask for a new team. 

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Feb 01 2019

1hr 8mins

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Rank #10: Two Versions of Kevin Durant, Derrick White Breaks Out, Ben Simmons Destroys Brooklyn

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On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver begin by processing the week of Kevin Durant scrutiny, from Monday's Game 2 collapse to Thursday's response in Game 3, which was the single most impressive performance of the playoffs so far. From there (37:00): Shoutout to Jackb Poeltl and the Open Floor Globe in Austria, Spurs hypotheticals, and a nod to Derrick White after a few dominant performances to open the playoffs for San Antonio. Then (49:00): Additional thoughts on Jamal Murray and the state of the Nuggets after Game 2's wild ending. At the end (60:00): Ben Simmons listened to the podcast on Tuesday and responded with the best game of his career, the Sixers are stabilizing, and the Nets are struggling.

A special thanks to our sponsors at Quip. Don't forget to go to getquip.com/floor

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Apr 20 2019

1hr 8mins

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Rank #11: Kemba in Boston and Other Free Agency Rumors, Bradley Beal's Future in DC, Projecting the West

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On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver begin with a nod to NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo and then move to the rumors swirling around the NBA this week. Topics include: Kemba Walker and the pros and cons of a potential move to Boston, the continued buzz surrounding Brooklyn's KD/Kyrie possibilities, a Knicks "what if?" scenario, a Clippers doomsday scenario, and what to make D'Angelo Russell Lakers rumors. Then (40:00): Bradley Beal says he's "definitely" open to an extension in D.C., so where does that leave the Wizards? At the end (52:00): The Jazz look like a Finals contender, everyone else in the West has the same dreams, Zion vs. Luka, Sixers front office conspiracy theories, alarming Suns factoids, and looking back at a surprise battle between Marvin Bagley and Damian Lillard at the end of last week. 

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Jun 26 2019

1hr 26mins

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Rank #12: Giannis revenge mission, NBA statues, load management ethics

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On today's show, Ben Golliver and Rob Mahoney go deep on the Milwaukee Bucks after their recent win over the Los Angeles Clippers. They engage in comical Giannis Antetokounmpo hyperbole on the following topis: his revenge mission, MVP defense, pre-game grunting, winning plays and leadership intangibles. From there, they tackle pressing questions from the Open Floor Globe on everything from NYC marathon attire to the utility of the phrase "two-way player." Ben and Rob also debate the many ethical issues surrounding the load management question and how teams should determine which stars to honor with statues outside their arenas. They close by checking the temperature on Mike D'Antoni's seat in Houston.

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Nov 08 2019

1hr 6mins

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Rank #13: Bucks Get Bledsoe, Kyrie as MVP, Ben Simmons Takeover

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On today's show Sharp and Golliver take more questions from listeners and begin by breaking down the Eric Bledsoe trade. Was Greg Monroe really the best Phoenix could do? Where were the Nuggets? And (7:00) where does this leave Giannis and the Bucks? What will they do with Kidd? What about Jabari? And did Sharp will the Bledsoe experiment into existence? From there (26:00): they discuss Kyrie Irving's MVP candidacy, the Celtics' Finals chances, and how to explain the firstmonth in Boston. Then (42:00): rethinking the Sixers over/under, the shocking start for Ben Simmons, and how he compares to Giannis. At the end (52:00): an update on OKC and Billy Donovan, Dirk's twilight, NBA dopplegangers, bicycle cautionary tales, and the birth of the Golli Lama.

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Nov 10 2017

1hr 11mins

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Rank #14: Daryl Morey's China crisis, AD's stellar debut, 2020 NBA style of play

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On today's show, Ben Golliver offers an Open Floor "State of the Union" address in light of Sports Illustrated's recent staffing changes. Ben is then joined by his new co-host, Rob Mahoney of Sports Illustrated, to discuss Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey's tweet about Hong Kong and the ensuing fallout in China. Should Morey have been fired? Could the NBA have handled its response differently? Are US politicians correct when they accuse the NBA of hypocrisy? From there, Ben and Rob discuss: Anthony Davis's stellar debut, how Davis compares with Giannis Antetokounmpo, and whether the NBA will see major changes in its style of play now that Kevin Durant hast left the Warriors. They close by analyzing Deandre Ayton's summer priorities and Michael Porter Jr.'s Rookie of the Year chances. 

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Oct 08 2019

1hr 5mins

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Rank #15: Silver Disappoints Golliver, Extreme Smallball, Spurs vs. Rockets vs. OKC

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On today's show Sharp and Golliver answer more mailbag questions. First they talk through Adam Silver's exciting support of the podcast, but his disappointing failure to give the West the respect it deserves. At 15 minutes, they talk through lottery reform: what the NBA got wrong, and what could be great anyway. At 25 minutes they talk about Kevin Love starting at center and the NBA's smallball destiny. At 35 minutes: Thoughts on the Spurs, what's possible for CP3 on the Rockets, and the West hierarchy after the Warriors. At the end: the best and worst of NBA social media, how to watch defense, and a word on neuroscience. 

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Oct 06 2017

1hr 9mins

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Rank #16: Warriors/Celtics Reactions, Joel Embiid Owns Los Angeles, Unicorn Discourse

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On today's show Sharp and Golliver recap Celtics/Warriors, including thoughts on Jaylen Brown, Boston's defense, Kyrie's offense, and disgust with Golden State for not delivering the blowout that America needed. Other questions: Are the Celtics the new Hawks? Will they be the best team in the East? And are they the next team to beat Golden State? Then (18:00): Golliver recaps his night with the Sixers at Staples Center, and they spend 10 minutes in disbelief at how good the Sixers are, before moving to Lonzo Ball (29:00), and whether the Sixers or Celtics are better positioned to dethrone Golden State. From there (35:00) they discuss the unicorn stampede coming at the All-Star Game, and whether "unicorn" is an acceptable term. At the end (45:00): The best stadium atmospheres, the Greek Leap, Dwight Howard and Eddie Murphy, NBA twitter jokes in real life, and the long-awaited public debut of Ben's magnet collection.  

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Nov 17 2017

1hr 9mins

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Rank #17: The Suns in Shambles, Early Lonzo Takes, More Mailbag

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On today's show Sharp and Golliver begin by discussing the disastrous opening week in Phoenix. How did things get this bad? How much blame does management deserve? And are the Suns the most dysfunctional organization in the league? Then they discuss potential landing spots for Eric Bledsoe and whether the Bucks should deal Malcolm Brogdon or Jabari Parker. At 30 minutes, they discuss Lonzo Ball and how much we've learned after the first three Lakers games. At 35 minutes, Portis and the Bulls, the longevity of Klay, Kyrie's not so woke, and Giannis is the future and the past in Deeeborn, Michigan. At the end: horrifying food choices, Dennis Rodman as Death Valley, fantasy teams, and Instagram captions.

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Oct 24 2017

1hr 9mins

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Rank #18: Knicks coaching crisis, Harden's place in the hierarchy, Shot quality vs. shot location

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On today's podcast, Ben Golliver and Rob Mahoney discuss the dilapidated state of the Knicks. Is there any coach, or person, alive who could replace David Fizdale and find success? Why did the front office shift its expectations between July and November? Which of New York's young building blocks are keepers? From there, Ben and Rob debate James Harden's place in the NBA hierarchy and dissect Russell Westbrook's dismissal of Patrick Beverley. After discussing the relative importance of shot location and shot distribution, they close with a painful email from a British listener whose 2016 USA road trip was ruined by Klay Thompson. Note: This is Rob's last episode as co-host. Ben will welcome a new co-host on the next episode, which will be released on Tuesday.

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Nov 15 2019

1hr 6mins

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Rank #19: Shock and Awe and the Sixers, First Round First Impressions, Blazers/Thunder War

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On today show's Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver begin by considering the bigger picture for the 76ers. Topics include: Saturday's disastrous Game 1, Monday's Game 2 victory, the price of Ingram over Simmons stock, D'Angelo Russell's proper rating, Elton Brand's last 6 months, the ominous next contracts for Jimmy Butler, Tobias Harris, and JJ Reddick, how much has changed for this team in the past 12 months, and how much of Philly's problem comes down to bad luck with two franchise players. Then (37:00): a bunch of Western Conference minions overreact to a Raptors loss, Kyle Lowry has more playoff questions to answer, we won't learn much about the playoff Bucks and the playoff Celtics for another few weeks, the Jazz are not looking great. At the end (60:00): wondering about the future of the Nuggets, preparing for another 10 days of battle between Portland and OKC, and worrying about ratings in a post-LeBron universe.

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Apr 16 2019

1hr 24mins

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Rank #20: Charles Barkley Has Some Takes, Golden State Compounds These Problems, Playoff P is the New Oladipo

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On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver are live from NBA All-Star Weekend in Charlotte. They begin with talk about Nike hacking shoelaces, Zion Williamson, and Charles Barkley's thoughts on the Anthony Davis saga. Then (16:00): the shadow cast by the Hamptons Five, whether games still matter, and what the NBA might look like a year from now. From there (40:00): Paul George is making believers out of the whole world, Russ is playing with a purpose, and Trae Young leads a rookie class that looks kind of incredible. At the end (60:00): Checking in with LeBron as L.A. takesmen grow restless, and then listeners write in with ideas for All-Star Weekend -- including a ban on backboards, tampering live feeds, and a wine-drinking contest.

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Feb 15 2019

1hr 15mins

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Best and Worst HORSE players, 1990s cult heroes, no-ring-yet Dream Team

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open by diving deep into the NBA's proposal to launch a HORSE tournament during quarantine. Is the NBA desperate? Are we desperate enough to watch? Which players make the dream field and which players would be absolutely horrible? From there, Ben and Michael take questions from the Open Floor Globe. Which cult heroes of the 1990s are worth re-watching on YouTube? Should the NBA change its MVP voting procedure to adopt daily updates like Australian Rules Football? Which players would form our no-ring-yet Dream Teams? Should free Legos have been part of the USA's COVID stimulus program? 

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Apr 07 2020

1hr 13mins

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Best games of 2019-20, coronavirus mid-life crises, past greats in modern NBA

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open with Michael's story on a Palo Alto company's ranking of the most memorable games of the 2019-20 season. What does the company's algorithm prioritize? Does it have any blind spots? And what were Ben and Michael's favorite games of the season? From there, they dive into questions from the Open Floor Globe. Will the coronavirus trigger mid-life crises and retirements from coaches and players? Should non-NBA basketball stars be invited to All-Star Weekend in some way? Which stars of the 1990s and 2000s would be the most fun to watch in the modern era? What have been the biggest changes to the NBA media landscape over the last 20 years?

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Apr 03 2020

1hr 22mins

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Hakeem's what-if, MJ's 55, the wall of sound

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina dive into another batch of questions from the Open Floor Globe, starting with an incredible "What if?" involving the Houston Rockets and a possible 1984 trade that could have landed Clyde Drexler and Michael Jordan alongside Hakeem Olajuwon. Would that Big 3 have worked? How many titles would Jordan and Olajuwon have won as teammates? From there, Ben and Michael discuss re-watching Jordan's 55-point explosion at Madison Square Garden on its 25th anniversary. How famous would John Starks be in the Twitter and Instagram era? What made Jordan's game-winning play so special? Why did Hubie Brown steal the show? The guys then pivot with questions about NBA crowd environments, and whether the coronavirus might spoil Steve Ballmer's idea of building a "Wall of Sound" in his new arena. At the end, Michael explains his 40" vertical leap and accepts an offer to be a ringer on a Milwaukee beach volleyball team.  

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Mar 31 2020

1hr 11mins

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Two truths and a lie, media as fans, social distancing stars

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open with a game of "Two Truths and a lie." Did Michael have a 40-inch vertical in high school? Is he really related to Dana Barros? Did Ben once shatter a backboard? Did he watch the 2004 Finals in a disease-fueled state in a foreign country? From there, they take questions from the Open Floor Globe. Should media members act as stand-in fans if NBA games resume in empty arenas? Which NBA stars would rise to the top if the league enacted a six-foot social distancing policy on the court? What advice do the guys have for a recent high school graduate about becoming a sportswriter and picking games to watch on a nightly basis?

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Mar 27 2020

1hr 12mins

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Free agency match-making, Saving the NBA awards, White whale games

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open with a summary of the NBA's looming $1 billion hit due to the coronavirus and possible impacts on next year's salary cap. Should the owners and players agree to "smooth" a possible record cap decline? From there, Michael plays matchmaker between 2020 free agents and teams, pairing Fred VanVleet with the Knicks, Montrezl Harrell with the Pistons and Paul Millsap with the Suns. Then, the guys take questions from the Open Floor Globe. How should the NBA save its annual awards show? Were Anfernee Hardaway and Shaquille O'Neal underrated as a duo? Which 1980s-era playoff games do Ben and Michael wish they had been alive to see? At the end, they address a distraught high school senior and an emailer who is seeking forgiveness after lying to Open Floor about his love life.

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Mar 24 2020

1hr 12mins

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NBA's lost narratives, our favorite seasons, MJ's return

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina cope with the coronavirus crisis by running through some of this season's biggest lost narratives. What's next for the Bucks, Nets and Rockets? How will the suspended schedule impact Giannis Antetokounmpo's "supermax" decision? Would Kevin Durant consider a return to the delayed postseason? Is Daryl Morey off the hook for his Hong Kong tweet? From there, Ben and Michael take questions from the Open Floor Globe about the favorite NBA seasons of their childhoods and their memories of Michael Jordan's return from baseball. They show some love to U.S. health care workers and close by discussing their NBA doppelgangers.  

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Mar 20 2020

1hr 7mins

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The coronavirus & the NBA schedule, airing old grievances

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina discuss the coronavirus and its ongoing impacts on the NBA schedule. Players have been sent home and the NBA is on hiatus for at least two months. Can a postseason be salvaged? Should a postseason be salvaged? An Open Floor Globe member from Denmark sounds the alarm about what's coming for the USA, while another from France correctly suggests that this crisis is an opportunity in disguise. From there, Ben and Michael circle back to take questions on heated debates from past shows. If LeBron James supposedly isn't as famous as we think, why is he so well-known in an underground gold mine in the Australian outback? Should an Orlando Magic fan seek revenge after his girlfriend cheated on him during the Slam Dunk Contest? Should we add an oddities wing to our plans for making a statue garden at the Hall of Legends? 

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Mar 17 2020

1hr 7mins

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NBA suspends season due to coronavirus

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina discuss the NBA's decision to indefinitely suspend the 2019-20 season after Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert and guard Donovan Mitchell tested positive for the coronavirus. Did the NBA make the right decision and should they have made it earlier? Will we see any more games this season? If not, which playoff storylines will we miss the most? How should fans treat Gobert? What can you and your family do to stay safe? 

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Mar 12 2020

59mins

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LeBron's Lakers enjoy a big weekend, Coronavirus gets real

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina look back at LeBron James's big weekend, as the Los Angeles Lakers enjoyed signature victories over the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Clippers. Did LeBron vault into the MVP conversation? Are the Lakers now the title favorites? Will Giannis Antetokounmpo's injury damage his MVP chances, and should it alter Milwaukee's approach to the rest of the season? From there, Ben and Michael discuss the NBA's ongoing response to the Coronavirus, including the anticipated closing of locker rooms to media members. They wrap up the episode by dissecting Kenny Atkinson's departure as Brooklyn Nets coach, running through possible replacement candidates, and announcing that a Zion-themed hymn has become the show's new theme song.

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Mar 10 2020

1hr 14mins

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Stephen Curry's next chapter, Does NBA need commentating shake-up?

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina welcome Stephen Curry back to the court with an extended discussion about the Golden State Warriors guard's legacy and next chapter. Will Curry win another title and/or MVP? Where will the Warriors finish in the West standings next year? How much elite basketball does he have left in the tank, and which factors are working for and against him? From there, Ben and Michael take questions from the Open Floor Globe. They respond to accusations of LeBron-induced myopia, discuss the state of NBA television commentating in the wake of Daryl Morey's critiques, and weigh a possible Joel Embiid to the Nets trade scenario. 

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Mar 06 2020

1hr 6mins

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Giannis vs. Harden escalates, KD considers Tokyo, Peak Westbrook

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open by dissecting the escalating tension between James Harden and Giannis Antetokounmpo. Does Harden have a point? Is he guilty of hypocrisy? What constitutes "skill" in basketball? Then, they pivot to a quick discussion about Kevin Durant's possible interest in representing Team USA at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. From there, they break down the Rockets' overtime victory over the Celtics. How does Boston build into a title team? What makes Russell Westbrook so dangerous in Houston's new five-out approach? Are the Clippers prepared to spoil the Rockets' rise? Ben and Michael close with follow-up questions about their Hall of Legends and Statue Garden ideas, including snub nominees and a "Statuability" ranking. 

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Mar 03 2020

1hr 3mins

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LeBron vs. Zion, Giannis vs. 70, Road jersey etiquette

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Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open with an extended discussion of LeBron James' first game against Zion Williamson. Was LeBron trying to prove a point? How did Zion hold up? Was there some chilliness to their post-game comments, and is a rivalry budding? From there, Ben and Michael dig deep into Milwaukee's historic season. Will Mike Budenholzer screw this up or does he take unfair criticism? Should the Bucks chase 70 wins? How should they handle Giannis Antetokounmpo's minutes in the playoffs? The episode closes with questions from the Open Floor Globe. Which players need a change of scenery this summer? If Zion got kidnapped, who should the kidnappers call first to ensure the biggest ransom? How did Michael manage to be kind and insightful on a Suns podcast? And, finally, should a Heat fan buy and wear a Sixers jersey when he goes to a game in Philadelphia during a work trip? 

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Feb 28 2020

1hr 8mins

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MJ honors Kobe, Tatum erupts, Simmons' back woes

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On today's episode, Ben Golliver and Michael Pina offer a line-by-line breakdown of Michael Jordan's incredibly moving tribute for Kobe Bryant. Why did MJ's speech resonate with so many people? Why should it be viewed as the ultimate validation for Kobe's career? From there, Ben and Michael take questions from the Open Floor Globe. Should there be a more exclusive "Hall of Legends" that complements the Hall of Fame but only honors players with lasting impacts? If so, who should be in and who should be out? Then, the discussion shifts to the Celtics and Sixers. What does Jayson Tatum's recent hot stretch say about his long-term ceiling? Should Ben Simmons shut it down for the season due to his back problems? 

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Feb 25 2020

1hr 15mins

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Kyrie Irving's season ends, All-Star Weekend fixes

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On today's episode, Ben Golliver and Michael Pina discuss the fallout surrounding Kyrie Irving's season-ending shoulder surgery. What's next for the Brooklyn Nets? Does the concept of a "Gap year" really exist? Would the Nets undo their 2019 summer if they could? From there, Ben and Michael pivot to suggestions from the Open Floor Globe on how to fix All-Star Weekend. Should the dunk contest add sensors or change its scoring system? Should the Three-Point Contest be turned into a giant game of 21? Should the All-Star Game's Elam ending add protections so that it doesn't finish on a free throw? Finally, they address whether Giannis Antetokounmpo's late-game weaknesses on offense cost Team Giannis the All-Star Game victory.

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Feb 21 2020

1hr 11mins

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All-Star Weekend winners and losers

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On today's episode, Ben Golliver and Michael Pina convene for a late-night All-Star Weekend recap. Ben and Michael run through the winners and losers of the midseason showcase in Chicago, praising the NBA's new All-Star Game format and the many standouts from Sunday's game (Kawhi Leonard, LeBron James, Chris Paul, Rudy Gobert). They chide Joel Embiid and Kemba Walker for their late-game missteps, before shifting gears to dive deeply into a Slam Dunk Contest breakdown and a pity party for Aaron Gordon. Just how badly did the judges blow it? What's the fix for next year? Then, Ben offers some behind-the-scenes gushing on Zion Williamson and names his Mt. Rushmore of All-Star Weekend figures. Along the way, Ben and Michael discuss the brewing rivalry between Giannis Antetokounmpo and James Harden, and praise the All-Star Saturday victories for Bam Adebayo and Buddy Hield.

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Feb 17 2020

1hr 4mins

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2020 NBA All-Star Weekend Preview

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On today's episode, Ben Golliver and Michael Pina preview the 2020 NBA All-Star Weekend. Will Zion Williamson and Team USA crush Luka Doncic and the World Team in the Rising Stars Challenge? Who will benefit from the rule changes in the Three-Point Contest? With Zion skipping out, will the Dunk Contest still be worth watching? And who will take the crown: Aaron Gordon or Derrick Jones Jr.? Then, on Sunday, won't the All-Star Game be the perfect opportunity for Nick Nurse and the Raptors to recruit Giannis Antetokounmpo? Ben and Michael close by taking questions on the evolving nature of basketball and the Cleveland Cavaliers' dismal future.

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Feb 13 2020

1hr 4mins

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Surging Raptors, Damian Lillard's outrage, All-Star mailbag

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On today's episode, Ben Golliver and Michael Pina recover from the NBA trade deadline by catching their breath before the upcoming craziness of All-Star Weekend. They start with a deep dive into the Toronto Raptors, who have won 14 straight entering Monday. What's driving the Raptors' success and why are they such an intriguing threat to the Bucks? From there, they analyze Damian Lillard's complaints about the officials and the NBA's stunning decision not to pushing Portland for its vociferous complaining. To close, Ben and Michael take questions from the Open Floor Globe. How many All-Star starters throughout history have been worse than Trae Young? Should the All-Star rosters be expanded? Is Gersson Rosas the Messiah in Minnesota? Why does one San Diego chef always think about Kobe Bryant whenever he remembers slicing off his finger in a cooking accident?  

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Feb 11 2020

59mins

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NBA Trade Deadline Winners & Losers

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On today's episode, Ben Golliver and Michael Pina run though the winners and losers of the 2020 NBA Trade Deadline. Did the Warriors gamble wisely on Andrew Wiggins? Did the Timberwolves sacrifice too much in their successful pursuit of D'Angelo Russell? Did the Rockets, Sixers and Heat do enough to change their playoff outlooks? Were the Bucks and Clippers actually the biggest winners? How depressing, exactly, was Andre Drummond's trade to the Cavaliers?

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Feb 07 2020

1hr 2mins

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NBA trade deadline preview, Kobe Bryant's tribute, All-Star angst

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On today's episode, Ben Golliver and Michael Pina preview this week's NBA trade deadline. First, though, they recap the Lakers' Friday night tribute to Kobe Bryant and Damian Lillard's remarkable 48-point performance in LA. How did LeBron James do with his pre-game speech? Are there any hypothetical duos that would be better than LeBron and Dame? Are the Blazers the team everyone should want to claim the West's eighth seed? When it comes to the deadline, Ben and Michael talk through which aspiring contenders are the most desperate to make a move (Rockets, Sixers) and which should consider rolling the dice (Lakers, Clippers, Bucks). They close by talking through the various All-Star snubs -- Bradley Beal, Devin Booker, Zach LaVine -- to determine who actually has a case.

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Feb 04 2020

1hr 25mins

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Los Angeles, the Lakers & the NBA remember Kobe Bryant

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On today's episode, Ben Golliver and Michael Pina discuss the aftermath of Kobe Bryant's tragic death. Ben discusses the scene at the site of the helicopter crash in Calabasas, describes the memorials across Los Angeles and offers first-hand observations from the Lakers' first media session after Bryant's death. From there, Michael offers perspective from New York, and they discuss the implications of Bryant's death on the upcoming trade deadline, All-Star Weekend and NBA playoffs. They close by discussing Bryant's influence -- from his jersey numbers to his sneakers -- and take the New York Knicks to task for their ugly on-court incident and post-game comments while the league was still in mourning.  

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Jan 30 2020

1hr

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iTunes Ratings

2063 Ratings
Average Ratings
1770
69
52
40
132

Michael saved the show

By Cheeseburglar10 - Feb 13 2020
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Thank you Michael, thank you.

My favorite NBA pod

By scrabblelet145 - Dec 17 2019
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This is easily my favorite NBA podcast. The chemistry between Ben and Michael is excellent!!