Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 31st, 2014

By Gregory Crawford---TV, Print and Radio Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz and @kcsportsmgmt

NBA--- The latest and hopefully greatest Crawford's NBA power rankings. Really hard to do, but someone has to do it as we head to 2015.

1. Golden State
2. Portland
3. Chicago
4. Memphis
5. Toronto
6. Atlanta
7. Houston
8. Washington
9. Clippers

 Basketball Wishes---- Here are few wishes from Crawford for 2015 in regards to the great game of basketball.

1. Hoping Gonzaga for the first time ever will make the Final Four. One of the greatest fan bases in all of basketball and one of the biggest disappointments over and over in post season play.

2. Hoping Gregg Popovich, will play his regulars in regular season games. I know people think it is cute, but it also cheats the fans and it really makes you think hard about all those championships, were they really earned. San Antonio is a great city and franchise, but I never feel good about this Popovich style of resting players. The NBA is an entertainment league and always should be.

3. Hoping Danny Miles, the iconic coach of Oregon Tech will soon join the Basketball Hall of Fame. Not sure what else he needs to do, 1,000 wins should get you in automatically.

4. Change college basketball rules, they are diminishing the game at a rapid rate. 1) Less timeouts. 2) Allow pre-game dunking 3) Offense can't call timeout in the backcourt 4) Reduce the shot clock down to 29 seconds.

5. There are many, many more, but last for today. Hopefully more people will get out and attend all levels of college basketball, not just D-1, but all levels both men and women.


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Sunday, December 28, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 28th, 2014

By Gregory Crawford---TV, Print and Radio Basketball Analyst---- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

NWAC BASKETBALL--- Just before Christmas, I was asked a question by someone I know well, "why do I waste so much time covering the NWAC, it is not that important ?" While most people would take offense to that question,  personally it caused me to think a lot.

I have been fortunate enough to follow basketball closely for 54 years, thanks to great parents who bought me a transistor radio, which was way beyond their budget, so I could listen to San Francisco Warrior games and Laker games even all the way up in my hometown of Portland, Oregon. Obviously, basketball and helping animals, is my first love. It also means as a member of the media, I have been able to see so many key college and professional games live and in person. This year I will see close to 150 college games, live, start to finish.

Although I was late to the party in enjoying these games, my most enjoyment in watching games comes from NWAC basketball and than by no means is to slight other leagues I see, it thrilling every time I watch any basketball game.

I love both men and women's NWAC basketball for many reasons, here is just a few.

1. If I can give NWAC basketball just a slight amount of coverage I love doing it, since their coverage in the mainstream media is pretty much zero.

2. The coaches in the NWAC are awesome people, as well as basketball coaches. Many have been at their respective schools longer than 10 years, showing their dedication not only to basketball, but helping shape the lives of young men and women way beyond the basketball floor.

3. I also admire the players. Some are on their last stop of playing organized basketball, some are struggling in the classroom to make it, some are great students, but one thing always stands out, they give it their all each and every day, which means lots.

4. NWAC basketball truly is a pure form of the great game of basketball and if you have not watched a game, if you go to one game, you will return.

So NWAC Sports basketball players, coaches, administrators, keep doing what you are doing and I will try my best to keep doing what I do, support you in the media as much as I possibly can.

NWAC Power Rankings---- It is only fair since for the last year I have been doing the Crawford's power rankings for NWAC men's basketball, that I start for women's basketball doing the same thing. So here is the first ever women's edition. For those of you new to Crawford's power rankings, I always do things in 9s,  out of respect for another big love, the game of golf.

1. Umpqua
2. Centralia
3. Treasure Valley
4. Clackamas
5. Walla Walla
6. Blue Mountain
7. Spokane
8. Olympic
9. Clark

Clackamas CC---- Hope you can make it in your plans in the next 3 days to attend a great basketball tournament at Clackamas Community College in Oregon City, Oregon. You will not only see great basketball, but you will also see plenty of 4-year college coaches looking at potential players for their teams. 8 teams, 11 games, men's college basketball at its finest and thanks Clif Wegner and staff for putting this all together.

Game times today 28th and on the 29th are 1,3.5 and 7. On the 30th, the games will start at 11, 1 and with the championship game at 3:00.

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Saturday, December 27, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 27th, 2014

By Gregory Crawford---TV, Print and Radio Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

NBA Out West---- Many Portland Trail Blazer fans and trust me there are many around the entire world,  would love to see on January 10th, after the Blazers complete their longest home stand of the year, 7 games, have the best record in the NBA.

While at present the Blazers have the second best record in the NBA at 24-7 behind Golden State, it is going to tough for Portland to have the best record in the league. During the Blazers' home stand, the Golden State Warriors will also have a great home stand of six games, which will end on January 9th. At 23-5, it will be tough for the Blazers to catch the Warriors, especially since both teams, looking at their opponents could easily run the table on their next combined 12 home games.

By the way, the next Golden State/Portland game does not come until March.

WCC---As I documented yesterday, the West Coast Conference is always great each year and so underrated. It also gets off to a blockbuster start, with Gonzaga visiting BYU today. If the Zags can win that game, they just might run the table in the WCC. Always fun to do some score predictions, so here we go for tonight in the WCC.

Gonzaga 84 @ BYU 81 in overtime

Portland 65 @ San Diego 67 in overtime

Steve Kerr--- Who got the best Christmas present in all of basketball this year. Well it had to be Steve Kerr, when he spurned the Knicks to take the Warriors job. Not to forget the wonderful job he is doing with Golden State.

Clackamas CC--- Each year, actually it is a lot of years, as Clif Wegner is into his 39th year of coaching  high school and college basketball, Wegner puts together a great Christmas tournament at the school where he is the head coach.

This year is no different, as the action gets underway tomorrow, December 28th and runs through the 30th. The games on the 28th and 29th, have starting times of 1,3,5 and 7. On the final day the 30th, the games will take place at 11.1 and championship game at 3:00.

Three days, 11 games, 8 solid teams and if you have not watched NWAC Sports basketball, here is a golden opportunity in Oregon City, Oregon at Randall Hall on the Clackamas CC campus. Plenty of free parking as well.

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Friday, December 26, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 26th, 2014

By Gregory Crawford----TV, Radio and Print Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

WCC Hoops----The West Coast Conference is the most underrated basketball conference in the country. Gonzaga, BYU and St. Mary's get most of the attention, but there are some other really good programs and teams in the league. It is so tough to predict, but someone has to do the work. So here are my predictions for teams place of finish, once league play is done, which by the way starts tomorrow, with one really huge game, Gonzaga at BYU.

1. Gonzaga
2. BYU
3. San Diego
4. St. Mary's
5. Portland
6. Santa Clara
7. San Francisco
8. Pepperdine
9. Loyola
10. Pacific

It is going to be a great race to the finish, especially with the middle of pack and a real chance if Gonzaga wins tomorrow in Provo, they could run the table.

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Thursday, December 25, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 25th, 2014

By Gregory Crawford---TV, Radio and Print Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz and @kcsportsmgmt

NWAC Power Rankings--- Merry Christmas and how about a present, at least for a few teams, the 2014-15 debut of Crawford's NWAC Sports Power Rankings for men's basketball. The NWAC is a great league, with great dedicated coaches, so it is an honor to give them some coverage, they so deserve.

There certainly is a strong level of competitiveness when it comes to NWAC basketball, especially with all the great NWAC tournaments and the just completed crossover tournaments, so here we go with our initial power rankings.

1. Bellevue (11-2) The Bulldogs have won the Pierce tournament and then their home tournament.

2. Big Bend (9-3)

3. Wenatchee Valley (9-3)

4. Edmonds (7-3)

5. Skagit Valley (8-4)

6. Highline (7-3)

7. Green River (8-4)

8. Clackamas (6-5)

9. Treasure Valley (4-6) Yes, a losing record overall, but have won four in a row, including winning the crossover tournament at Clackamas, which was loaded with really good teams.

Keep in mind, power rankings are fluid, will change each week and are for entertainment purposes only.

Christmas----More and more coaches I talk with on both the high school and college level, feel that there should be a complete dead period for basketball from December 21st to 26th. They want players with their families, not practicing or playing.

Of course with so much tied up in TV money and beyond, probably is not going to happen, but what do you think?

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Sunday, December 21, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 21st, 2014

By Gregory Crawford--- TV, Radio and Print Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

NBA Power Rankings----Here is the latest and now famous Crawford's NBA power rankings. We always do things in 9s, so top 9 below as of today's date.

1. Golden State
2. Portland
3. Memphis
4. Toronto
5. Clippers
6. Houston
7. Atlanta
8. Washington
9. Chicago

Very tough each Sunday to do these, but lots of fun as well. It is a good season for the NBA.

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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 18th, 2014

By Gregory Crawford---TV, Radio and Print Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

Today---- If you are in the Portland metro area, there will be some great basketball going on today at Clackamas Community College. The games start at 1:00 pm, last all day and the same schedule will take place tomorrow, with Saturday games being at 11,1 and the championship game at 3:00.

This one of the great NWAC Sports Crossover tournaments, 8 really good teams in this one and you can stay all day for the price of one game.

Beavers---- Big test for Oregon State Beavers tonight, as DePaul comes to Corvallis. Under Wayne Tinkle, Oregon State is on a great roll. I love predicting scores, so here go for tonight:

Oregon State 62 DePaul 59

Portland---- Anytime you can go into Sacramento State and come away with a win, it is great as the Portland Pilots did last Sunday. Then last night, a tough loss for the Pilots at UNLV in overtime. I would say it was a successful road trip and a confidence boost for the Pilots.

Portland is next at home on Saturday night, 7:00 against, Montana State.

Popovich---- I do not agree in the least how Gregg Popovich rests players during the year. It is bad for the NBA, as Dwight Jaynes wrote this week and it is bad for the game of basketball.

Are all those championships the Spurs won, really legit, compared to other multi championship teams in the NBA, who always played their stars. I love San Antonio and its people, great sports fans, but I do not agree with Popovich resting stars, it cheats the fans, it is bad for the game and last but not least Adam Silver should address it.

NBA tickets are expensive and the stars of the league, need to be on the floor each night when the Spurs come to town. End of story.

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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 14th, 2014

By Gregory Crawford---TV, Print and Radio Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz and @kcsportsmgmt

Coach of Year---- Hey, they never vote for coach of year in NCAA D-1 college basketball during December, but it is fun to think about if the voting took place today, the facts are that three west coast coaches would have to be in the top 10. Those three would be:

Cuonzo Martin at California, whose club is now 9-1.

Jim Hayford at Eastern Washington, who has his team at 8-1, with huge road wins at Indiana and San Francisco.

Wayne Tinkle at Oregon State, the Beavers are 7-2. So many so-called experts were saying the Beavers would not win five games all year long.

Yes, the college basketball season is not even half over, but it is always fun in sports to speculate and throw out ideas.

Power Rankings---- Coming soon to Greg Crawford Basketball will be the famous Crawford's power rankings for both the NWAC Sports and combo NWC/CCC.

It is interesting to note as of today, in the ever tough 10 team Cascade Collegiate Conference every team except Evergreen State has a winning record, led by College of Idaho at 13-1 and ranked number 2 nationally. Do not discount Evergreen as well, they are much improved over previous years.

It is a different story in the D-3 Northwest Conference where only four of the nine teams have a winning record, with all four of those teams being only one game over .500 at present. It will make for an interesting NWC/CCC power rankings this week, as I always pick nine teams, will all nine come from the CCC. That remains to be seen this week.

NBA Power Rankings---- Here is my updated to the minute, Crawford's NBA power rankings. Per usual, I always do things in 9s.

1. Golden State
2. Memphis
3. Toronto
4. Portland
5. Houston
6. Clippers
7. Washington
8. Atlanta
9. San Antonio

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Sunday, December 7, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 7th, 2014

By Gregory Crawford--- TV, Print and Radio Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @kcsportsmgmt @crawssportsbiz

Oregon State---- I was pretty excited when I heard the news this past spring that Oregon State hired Wayne Tinkle as their next men's basketball coach. I have watched Tinkle for many years guide Montana, winning many games that they probably should not have or would not have with a different coach.

After watching Tinkle pretty much will his team to an overtime victory last night on road against the Portland Pilots, I am even more excited about the future of Oregon State basketball. The victory by the Beavers last night, improved their pre-league record to 5-2. Some so called experts before the season started thought the Beavers would not even win four game all year long.

No, the Beavers will not win the Pac-12 title this year, nor will they go to the NCAA tourney, a place they have not been since 1990. But, the Beavers this year will win some games they are not suppose to in Pac-12 league play and watch out next year.

Oregon State has a top 25 recruiting class coming in next year as everybody knows, but for this year there are two players on the team to watch and could become big time, Victor Robbins and Gary Payton 11, of course the son of Oregon State and NBA great Gary Payton.

The fan base is slowly returning and great basketball is fastly returning to Corvallis, Oregon. Wayne Tinkle is the leader of the pack. or whatever you call a group of Beavers.

Renewed Faith--- My faith was a little bit renewed regarding college basketball fans in my hometown of Portland, Oregon. Nearly 3,500 people showed up last night at the Chiles Center to watch Portland/Oregon State. A small crowd by most standards, but good for Portland, Oregon and a recent history of not supporting college basketball. Plus a lively crowd, divided pretty equally between Pilot and Beaver fans, with the Pilot fans much more louder. Perhaps the Beavers are still in shock of seeing a really good ball club on the floor and thinking they will lose all the time.

Speaking of the Portland Pilots, despite their second loss last night, they still are a really good team, that should have an excellent season. They played last night without Kevin Bailey, their leading scorer.

Scores----My season record has reached 30-20, on predicting NBA scores. So here we go with Sunday's games and of course, for entertainment and fun purposes only.

Portland 111 @ New York 104
New Orleans 99 @ Lakers 101
OKC 120 @ Detroit 99

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 6th, 2014

By Gregory Crawford---TV, Print and Radio Basketball Analyst--- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

Brian McDermott---- Yes, Brian McDermott is a really good basketball coach, as has been documented by his time as head men's coach at Southern Oregon University since the 1996-97.

McDermott's team plays in the always tough Cascade Collegiate Conference. On Friday night the CCC opened their 2014-15 league season. Southern Oregon traveled to Concordia of Portland to meet the Cavaliers in key game as both teams were ranked in the top 15 in NAIA polls.

It was a great game all the way, living up to its pre-game billing,  with Southern Oregon winning in overtime 78-75, a great win in a conference that is very balanced and always tough for any team to win on the road.

But as someone who has followed college basketball for 54 years and sees over 130 college basketball games live start to finish each year, I saw something else great from Brian McDermott last night, which needs to be noted and is one more reason that makes "small college" basketball really special.

If you have ever walked by a basketball bench on any level after a game, it is usually a mess, scattered with dirty towels, worn out stat sheets and many, many used cups of water. You get the picture.

After the post-game handshakes between opponents last night (of which I continue to say should be done away with), before McDermott left to celebrate with his team in the dressing room, he personally picked up every used cup, stat sheet and towel, leaving his bench looking like it never had been used. Sports fans, that is the definition of CLASS  and it is something I will never forget.

It is always easy to leave a mess in basketball with team's bench and it might not seem like a big deal, but this is a BIG DEAL. We need more things to happen like this in sports, it does count and it does matter. So Coach McDermott, keep cleaning that bench and keep up the class act.

Bryce White--- You have all seen it, it has been all over the world, led by talk on ESPN. This past Wednesday night, White faked a handshake, the stole the ball out of Alec Wintering's hand at the end of the U of Portland/Portland State game and went in and dunked. It was a  rival game won easily by U of Portland. Should White have done this? Probably not, but in let's not get carried away with this and indict White as a bad person, as some have done.

Actually, I laughed about it. I am not taking sides, I love both U of Portland basketball and Portland State basketball. This inner-city rivalry is rather calm as most rivalries go and it needs a little spice. White obviously gave it a little spice on Wednesday night.

As sports fan, we often get carried away with small things, that is because we are all passionate. But White act is not the end of the world, we all have seen things in sports 100 times worse.

Oregon State--- Wayne Tinkle brings his Oregon State Beaver men's basketball team to Portland tonight to meet the Portland Pilots. Tinkle is one of the best things to happen to Oregon State basketball  in long time.

At the same time, this is one talented Portland Pilot team led by coach Eric Reveno. Tonight the Pilots will try to get off to their best start since 1978-79, hoping to run their record to 7-1. My score prediction.

Oregon State 73 @ U of Portland 79

Scores---- This past week I ran my record of predicting NBA scores to 28-19. Of course this is for entertainment and fun purposes only. So here will go with Saturday night.

Golden State 104 @ Chicago 105
Phoenix 121 @ Houston 125
Orlando 99 @ Sacramento 121

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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Greg Crawford On Basketball, For December 3rd, 2014

By Gregory Crawford----TV, Print and Radio Basketball Analyst ---- on twitter @wchoops @crawssportsbiz @kcsportsmgmt

Portland State/Portland---- Here we go tonight in my hometown, where I have followed college basketball closely for 54 years.

The men's match up between Portland State and U of Portland is a good rivalry, it will be even better tonight as both teams are off to a fast start and have a combined record of 10-2.

With friends and long time relationships on both sides, it is tough call for me to pick a winner. But someone in the town of Portland, Oregon has to talk about this game, so here is my prediction.

PSU 71 @Portland 72 (in overtime)

Scores----For entertainment purposes only, here are my NBA score predictions for Wednesday night. Always fun.

Lakers 88 @ Washington 93
Chicago 86 @ Charlotte 82
Dallas 110 @ Milwaukee 111

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