Train Crash | Hospital Officials Update Serious Injuries

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The Bulls Need To Keep Resting Stars If They Want To Beat The Cavs



The Chicago Bulls have won 205 regular season basketball games in the last four full seasons. They played the last two of those seasons without Derrick Rose.

This season, Rose is back (kind of), Joakim Noah continues to impress, Pau Gasol is seemingly reborn from Kobe’s shadow, and guys like Jimmy Butler, Aaron Brooks and Taj Gibson seem primed to improve their considerable skillsets.

Tom Thibodeau has pulled every last ounce of potential from his teams for these past four seasons. The team has played in top gear for long stretches of the regular season, ignoring the “marathon” mentality that other franchises have adopted around the league. Thibs doesn’t seem wired to take it easy on any day.

This is the season where he might want to pump the brakes and make sure his roster is healthy when the playoffs come around. The Cleveland Cavaliers have shown some distinct growing pains, while the Toronto Raptors and Washington Wizards have started off at a pretty solid clip.

Many thought the Bulls would be the best bet to spoil LeBron’s homecoming. Well, the Bulls should be looking across to the Western Conference to figure out the best way to topple LeBron: staying rested.

Gregg Popovich is a master at utilizing his entire roster. Last season, not one player saw 30+ minutes on the floor. Over the past five seasons, Pop has played only 10 players longer than 30 minutes per game.


The most minutes any Spurs player has logged since the 2009-10 season is Tony Parker, who played 32 minutes per game in three of the last five seasons.

Here’s the more important stat: In five seasons, Popovich has given out between 10 and 29 minutes to players a startling 57 times in five seasons. That means on average, he plays about 11 guys each season for 10-29 minutes.

This is not by chance; it’s brilliant and it’s a huge reason why the Spurs have been successful. It’s also a reason why they’ve managed to bounce back from such a heartbreaking loss to the Miami Heat in the 2013 NBA Finals.

Thibs, on the other hand, rides his stars. Last season, he played six players for more than 30 minutes per game. Kirk Hinrich, Taj Gibson and Carlos Boozer also played 28 minutes.


Then, the minutes drop quickly to Tony Snell’s 16 minutes a game. The Bulls were dead come playoff time, when they were outmatched by a younger, spunkier Wizards team.

This season, Thibs has four guys playing 30+ minutes a game, which does not include Rose (28 MPG). Noah is on a 30-minute restriction and Thibs is pushing that limit, playing Noah an average of 30 minutes a night. Jimmy Butler, Pau Gasol and Mike Dunleavy are the other 30+ guys on the roster.

Where can Thibs find the minutes to spread out among his roster? He needs to look no further than three youngsters who are getting about 10 minutes per game right now: Tony Snell, Nikola Mirotic and Doug McDermott.

There is no need for Dunleavy to be playing 31 minutes per game since he’s not playing well enough to deserve those minutes. He only scores 11 points per game and he isn’t rebounding well, either. His PER is 14.7, which is below average.

LeBron James has logged a massive number of minutes in the past four seasons with the Heat. Four runs through to the NBA Finals can wear down a body, even one as strong as his.


David Blatt is still playing him 40 minutes per game right now. Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving are also logging 38+ minutes each (LeBron is already asking for fewer minutes).

The Cavs are also being forced to work a lot harder to snag wins than they probably predicted. The Boston Celtics forced a maximum effort on Friday night and those types of games add up over the course of a season.

Tom Thibodeau has the roster to take down King James before he makes it to the NBA Finals for a fifth straight season. The key is how he uses his roster, as the Heat were outmatched by a fast moving, sharper Spurs team last year.

The Bulls shouldn’t be playing anyone more than 30 minutes per game. They should take some lumps during the regular season, develop some talent, keep the stars healthy and take their chances in the playoffs.

The other way of doing things hasn’t quite worked for the Bulls yet.


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Community Post: Mass Exodus: Blizzard Entertainment

Mass Exodus: Blizzard Entertainment

Chances are if your reading this, you know the name Blizzard has nothing to do with the weather. In fact, before Activision stepped in to purchase the original Blizzard – they were titans of the PC gaming industry.

Formed in the early ’90s by three friends from UCLA, Blizzard quickly gained notice in the gaming world and was picked up by Vivendi in 1994, giving them the ability to release the real stepping stones of their identity: Warcraft, StarCraft and Diablo.

In the early 2000s you couldn’t touch a PC without someone asking if you played one or all of these games, and phone lines around the world were always on busy from people who just couldn’t get enough of the Blizzard family of games. Myself included. I personally have spent more time playing Diablo, Diablo II, and now Diablo III than any sane person should. But as time goes on and more and more studios get involved in making blockbuster gaming titles, Blizzard seems to loosing its edge.

In recent weeks Blizzard has lost a combined total of almost 2-million core gamers from it’s World of Warcraft and Diablo 3 servers, and the hemorrhaging doesn’t seem to be stopping any time soon. Now, as a person who plays Diablo III entirely too much, I know exactly why this is, and your lucky enough to come along for the ride.


That’s right, boredom. The word no game publisher ever wants to hear when it comes to their products, but this is exactly why people are leaving so quickly. The lack of end-game content is so apparent. When playing Warcraft, How many times can you really do a raid in hopes of finding a slightly better piece of digital gear? After a while it becomes so repetitious that the rewards are not worth the grind. While Warcraft is better supported due to its “pay to play” nature, it still isn’t worth the 15 bucks a month to be tortured in a circle all day.

This is where Diablo III had a chance to shine, it’s free to play, and anyone familiar with Diablo II would think Diablo III is a sure bet.

But they’d be wrong.

I was one of those people who stayed up all night on release day to install and be the first on the servers for Diablo III. Well, from day one things went wrong; Release night, the servers crashed and Blizzard spent hours getting them back up, spending further days dedicating more servers to handle the traffic Diablo III was generating. This wasn’t the first giant release for Blizzard either. When Warcraft originally came out, it was a disaster. It’s bewildering to think a company that was so ill-prepared for a major release would ever make the same mistake twice, yet they did.

This is just the ground work for the overall fail-boat we are riding in. As we played on with the newly minted Diablo III, it was apparent by hour 20 that there was nothing left to do but grind the same 3 levels in the same Act 3 until the end of time. The major bosses in the game are a joke, killing Diablo grants you nothing, even on the hardest of Monster Power levels and it seems like a waste of a Diablo game to be honest. With the recent addition of PVP and the slight tweaks to character skills and items it added some glimmer of hope to such a beloved franchise, but when I opened Diablo II just for old times sake the other day, I was reminded of how it is such a better game and how disappointing the content for Diablo III really was.

Blizzard has had many chances to reel in its core gamers and bring in those on the outside also, but the lack of support and content additions to titles that resonate around the world, shows you how much they really care about their fan base. BlizzCon this year will undoubtedly be full of picket signs and the same questions over and over, “where is the Diablo III expansion ? Why are the items worthless ? What is the deal with the servers ? And finally, what’s the deal with these airplane peanuts ?” If their responses on their community forums are any clue to their answer – Meh – will suffice.

I loved Diablo and Diablo II, and was hugely excited for Diablo III too, once upon a time. Now, after being kicked in the nuts and having my lunch money taken, I too will be walking away from the bully I used to love.

Facebook: HefferBrew / Via

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