Place Your Bets Now: NBA 2017-2018 Season

Place Your Bets Now: NBA 2017-2018 Season

It seems like the best time to let the world know who is going to win the major regular season awards.

First, happy New Years to all! In what is bound to be an exciting year in the world of sports, the NBA remains prominent as just about half of the regular season has been played. With that, it seems like the best time to let the world know who is going to win the major regular season awards. Without further ado, let's get into it.

Coach of the Year: Gregg Popovich

Runner-up: Brad Stevens

Gregg Popovich could be the pick just about any year he's coached in the league, but this year holds as one of his best. Despite not having Kawhi Leonard for the first 26 games of the year, the Spurs held afloat. They give up the fewest points in the league, and that is without arguably the best defender in the entire association. They've held an offensive rating of 107.4 which is good for 15th in the league. Along with that, their pace, which currently ranks 29th, has greatly benefited their defensive rating as they are ranked third in that category. With all of these stats shining through, the attention has to go to Popovich. He has consistently lead the Spurs to levels of consistency that are unheard of, but this year has been different. With a roster that is assuredly lesser of others he's had, albeit this is without Kawhi Leonard, the Spurs are still the same old Spurs. Pop deserves some hardware for that.

Sixth Man of the Year: Dwyane Wade

Runner-up: Eric Gordon

Dwyane Wade did not fit in the starting lineup for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Nobody's debating that. But man, has he been great off the bench. While his stats won't jump off the page compared to Gordon or Iguodala, but he passes the eye test. Wade's playmaking, over 4 assists in less than 24 minutes per game, is huge for the Cavs when Lebron isn't there to make everything better. Cleveland has needed a playmaker like Wade for a couple years now to ensure Lebron doesn't have to play 46 minutes a game, and they got him. While this is a more surprising pick, voter fatigue and name recognition along with a solid year by Wade will get him this award in a close one.

Defensive Player of the Year: Draymond Green

Runner-up: Kawhi Leonard

Repeat! In the only back-to-back winner in these awards, Draymond Green is the undisputed best defensive player in basketball. His stats, while not exactly eye-popping, are solid enough to ensure that he takes home his second defensive player of the year award. His ability to get on the court and defend the best player on the other team every night cannot go unnoticed. He gets 1.6 steals a game and 1.4 blocks. While Kawhi's numbers are sure to be more exciting, his injury to start the season would seem to eliminate him from contention, thus leaving Draymond Green as the DPOY.

Most Improved Player: Devin Booker

Runner-up: Giannis Antetokounmpo

In what will be a stunner, Devin Booker is going to win Most Improved Player this year. He's the best player on a bad team, and those kinds of players don't get much attention unless you're scoring 70 points in Boston or 46 in Philadelphia. Before Booker's injury, he was tied for the most 30 point games in the league and was constantly dominating good defenders. Despite that, he's been labeled as a high volume scorer who can only do what he does because he puts up 25 shots a game. That's simply not true. He's posting career highs in points, assists, free throw percentage, 3-point percentage, field goal percentage and effective field goal percentage. He's doing this on a little over 18 shots a game. The narrative around Booker is wrong right now, but the voters know that. He will win the Most Improved Player award.

Rookie of the Year: Ben Simmons

Runner-up: Jayson Tatum

This one's easy. Ben Simmons is averaging 17 points, 9 rebounds and 7 assists per game while shooting 51 percent from the field. He's playing better than some superstars in this league and he has shown no signs of stopping. Simply put; Ben Simmons is a monster. He's a 6'10" point guard that can handle, pass and score. There's not even a serious argument for any of the other rookies, but Tatum's insane three-point percentage is probably the closest thing you can find. Nonetheless, Ben Simmons is going to win Rookie of the Year.

Most Valuable Player: James Harden

Runner-up: Lebron James

James Harden is absolutely ridiculous. Never have I seen a player that makes it look so easy. He's the only guy in the league averaging over 30 points a game. He's got a field goal percentage of 45 percent, almost 40 percent from deep and an effective field goal percentage of 55. Along with that, he's top 5 in the league with 9 assists a game. Again, he's ridiculous. With the Rockets having the best record in the league, this decision seems to be a simple one. Even though Lebron is having arguably his best season ever, Harden's has been better. Harden scores more, shoots better and is on the better team. Easy.

Cover Image Credit: Wikipedia

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When You Give A Girl A Dad

You give her everything

They say that any male can be a father, but it takes a special person to be a dad. That dads are just the people that created the child, so to speak, but rather, dads raise their children to be the best they can be. Further, when you give a little girl a dad, you give her much more than a father; you give her the world in one man.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a rock.

Life is tough, and life is constantly changing directions and route. In a world that's never not moving, a girl needs something stable. She needs something that won't let her be alone; someone that's going to be there when life is going great, and someone who is going to be there for her when life is everything but ideal. Dads don't give up on this daughters, they never will.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a role model.

If we never had someone to look up to, we would never have someone to strive to be. When you give a little girl someone to look up to, you give her someone to be. We copy their mannerisms, we copy their habits, and we copy their work ethic. Little girls need someone to show them the world, so that they can create their own.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her the first boy she will ever love.

And I'm not really sure someone will ever be better than him either. He's the first guy to take your heart, and every person you love after him is just a comparison to his endless, unmatchable love. He shows you your worth, and he shows you what your should be treated like: a princess.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her someone to make proud.

After every softball game, soccer tournament, cheerleading competition, etc., you can find every little girl looking up to their dads for their approval. Later in life, they look to their dad with their grades, internships, and little accomplishments. Dads are the reason we try so hard to be the best we can be. Dads raised us to be the very best at whatever we chose to do, and they were there to support you through everything. They are the hardest critics, but they are always your biggest fans.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a credit card.

It's completely true. Dads are the reason we have the things we have, thank the Lord. He's the best to shop with too, since he usually remains outside the store the entire time till he is summoned in to forge the bill. All seriousness, they always give their little girls more than they give themselves, and that's something we love so much about you.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a shoulder to cry on.

When you fell down and cut yourself, your mom looked at you and told you to suck it up. But your dad, on the other hand, got down on the ground with you, and he let you cry. Then later on, when you made a mistake, or broke up with a boy, or just got sad, he was there to dry your tears and tell you everything was going to be okay, especially when you thought the world was crashing down. He will always be there to tell you everything is going to be okay, even when they don't know if everything is going to be okay. That's his job.

When you give a girl a dad, you give her a lifelong best friend.

My dad was my first best friend, and he will be my last. He's stood by me when times got tough, he carried me when I just couldn't do it anymore, and he yelled at me when I deserved it; but the one thing he has never done was give up on me. He will always be the first person I tell good news to, and the last person I ever want to disappoint. He's everything I could ever want in a best friend and more.

Dads are something out of a fairytale. They are your prince charming, your knight in shinny amour, and your fairy godfather. Dads are the reasons we are the people we are today; something that a million "thank you"' will never be enough for.

Cover Image Credit: tristen duhon

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Stop Playing Female Rappers Against Each Other

Let them coexist.

I'm not sure whether you're aware or not, but Cardi B recently released an album.

Despite your feelings about it, (if they were negative leave right now or there will be a street fight ensuing between you and I) she released an album that is a fact. Another fact is that Nicki Minaj has also released some singles recently.

But the thing I have found to be most interesting is the comparison and seemingly inescapable pinning on one against another is still happening.

I’ve heard multiple people, from students to music critics themselves compare the two. And yes while they may be similar they are still different people. Also, know that it’s okay to like Nicki better or Cardi better. But the second you start saying one is “trash” is where the problem lies. They are both beautiful and great at what they do. Maybe Nicki is more polished, maybe Cardi is more in your face but that doesn’t mean you can’t like both.

Two women in any profession with a platform are often pitted against one another. However, we as a society allow multiple men to have the same positions but only one woman can be on top? Tell me how that makes sense. In the early 2000s, there was this Britney Spears versus Christina Aguilera matchup. And now we have Cardi B vs Nicki Minaj?

It’s 2018, can we stop this?

In genres such as rap and rock, which are overwhelmingly dominated by men, we should be happy that two women should are able to be simultaneously successful. Instead of tearing one down to build up the other, why can’t we just accept them both as talented because that’s what they are?

Also, shall we forget how important representation is? If young people don’t see themselves represented in a field it is hard for them to imagine becoming what they really want to be when they grow up. So, seeing Cardi and Nicki succeed the way they have could open a door for the next generation of fantastic young talent.

I saw an article headline on Twitter just yesterday about how Cardi B broke some Guinness World Record set by Beyoncé and my first thought was why did they need to say both names? When there’s a new worlds oldest person, they don’t mention the person who died in the headline do they? No. So why did they need to do it here? We do we foster this environment in which men can coexist but there can only be one woman?

The Migos, 21 Savage and A$AP Rocky are allowed to exist and do their own things, but nobody has any issues with that. They are all able to make their respective music without any comments or people pinning each against one another. I don’t see any poll about current male rappers saying that you can only like one the most?

To dislike or like certain music is natural. That’s fine. Pinning artists against one another? Not fine. We don’t have to keep doing this. Allow the careers of both Nicki Minaj and Cardi B to flourish as well as other, possibly lesser known rapper such as Azealia Banks or CupcakKe.

Cover Image Credit: Cardi B / Instagram

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