Sep 06

Friend and Foe-Sports Talk With Anthony Bonelli And Dan Valleau And More

The Boston Celtics played the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals this past season. During the best-of-seven series, each team was trying to find the smallest of weaknesses to exploit with the goal of winning four games in mind. The Cavaliers accomplished this and were named Eastern Conference Champions and moved on to the NBA Finals. Sometimes in a playoff series there can be hostility between both organizations due to the competitive nature of the games. This sometimes can cause the organizations to lose respect for one another. During the off-season team executives try and improve their team, in some cases that means making a trade with the team you were competing against months earlier in the Eastern Conference Finals. The Cavaliers and Celtics did exactly that when the two teams agreed to make arguably the most talked about trade of the off-season thus far. Point guard Kyrie Irving will be wearing a green and white Celtics jersey next season, while guard Isaiah Thomas, forward Jae Crowder, and center Ante Zizic will dawn a blue and red Cleveland Cavaliers jersey. Cleveland also received the unprotected first-round draft pick of the Brooklyn Nets in the trade, which the Celtics acquired from the Nets in a trade in 2013. The Nets have struggled the past few seasons, which means Cleveland could get the first overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. ESPN College Basketball Insider Jeff Goodman said, that the 2018 draft has potential to be ""loaded"" with future NBA stars. Cleveland also received the Celtics second- round draft pick in the 2020 draft. This pick was added to the trade after there were questions about Thomas’ injured right hip after he was examined by Cleveland’s medical staff. When a player spends multiple years with one team some might say he writes his own story with the team. A story that the franchise and the fans of the team will remember forever. Keeping this perspective in mind, this trade has an interesting similarity. A similarity that some may not remember, in the 2016 NBA Finals Irving during Game 7 made the game-winning three- point shot which gave the Cavaliers and 92-89 lead. This shot gave the city of Cleveland its first championship of any kind since 1964. Cleveland fans will cherish the memory of Irving’s shot forever no matter what jersey he wears in the future. Losing a loved one is hard, imagine losing someone you love while trying to lead your team to a championship. Thomas lost his sister Chyna, who was killed in a one-car accident during the playoffs. Thomas had to deal with the emotions of losing his sister, while keeping the team’s goal of winning a championship in mind. Sometimes when a player is on the court and around teammates, it serves as a distraction when a player is dealing with difficult circumstances off the court. There is no comparison that can be made between making a game-winning shot and losing a loved one, but there is something that can be said about the heart that both players possess. Although the adversity they faced was of a completely different nature, Thomas and Irving without question made an impact on their team during those respective moments. They also exemplified great leadership qualities, courageousness, strength, and the ability to not let distractions affect the way you play in a game. Looking at the other two players involved in the trade Crowder and Zizic, Crowder will bring size and athleticism to Cleveland. He can play in the post and shoot from the outside. As far as Zizic he is a 7-footer with decent post moves who the Celtics drafted with the 23rd overall pick in the 2016 draft. He has played for several teams overseas including the Darussafaka Dogus which is a Turkish team in the Basketbol Super Ligi coached by former Cavaliers Head Coach David Blatt. ESPN College Basketball Analyst, Fran Fraschilla told the Boston Globe that Zizic is a 240- pound big man who ""has a mean streak."" NBA fans will not have to wait long to see the top two teams in the Eastern Conference last season play each other. The first game on the NBA schedule on October 17, has the Celtics traveling to Cleveland to take on the Cavaliers. Some may look at the statistics and say this is a good trade for both teams which is hard to argue. When teams have an opportunity to acquire players that can not only help their team win a championship, but also players that possess amazing leadership qualities it is hard to turn down the deal. Friends are people who help people they care about in any way possible, while foes are defined as enemies or opponents. It is hard to characterize the relationship between the Celtics and Cavaliers as a friendship, but this trade makes it hard to call the two teams foes. The only way NBA fans can accurately characterize this relationship is by saying they are both a Friend and Foe to each other.