Russell Westbrook better be ready tonight. This is it. This is his moment. In Game 2, he was benched, for differing reasons. Some sources said it was because he screwed up a play at the end of the third quarter. Others maintained it was only because Eric Maynor, James Harden and the rest of the bench was playing so well. But in Game 3 with the series tied at one, this is big. The winner takes control. The loses faces their mortality. OKC is used to this. They were down 2-1 in the second round and came back to win against the Grizzlies. But Dallas, they’ve been playing from in front for their entire playoff run. If they lose, what happens? Can Dirk make the difference? … Westbrook has been good, but how about the other All-Stars in these playoffs? There are six stars left and every one has been huge. KD was the difference-maker in Game 5 against Denver and Game 7 against Memphis. LeBron ended Boston’s season, and then stole homecourt from the Bulls in Game 2. D-Wade has been the leader for Miami all year. And Dirk has just been ridiculous, almost never missing a shot. Who’s going to step up? Who will falter? As we wrote on DimeMag.com yesterday afternoon, the ratings go back and forth nearly every day because there are so many great performances. Let’s hope this weekend doesn’t disappoint … On a Friday without a game to look forward to, we had a big debate on the site yesterday: who’s better- Derrick Rose or Chris Paul? The consensus seemed to be that while Rose is the better scorer, Paul is the better point guard. But what makes a point guard? Does a lead guard have to be like CP? What happens if he’s just a natural scorer like Rose? We don’t necessarily agree that every player needs to be stuck in a box. If the dude can play and score, and that’s his strength, then let him go. Maybe Paul is the better “natural” point guard, but that doesn’t always make him the better pick. Just saying … Honestly, we didn’t think Blake Griffin had it in him. He’s a fabulous player, and a great kid. But a comedian? A guy who can carry a commercial? No way, we thought. No way. But he’s done it … We mentioned earlier this week that the Knicks might be after Ramon Sessions this summer. Turns out it probably won’t happen. ESPN’s Chris Sheridan is reporting that Sessions’ contract runs until 2012-13, and that’s too long for the Knicks. They need the cap space to pursue other free agents … The Warriors hired Jerry West yesterday. How long until they are contending? It doesn’t matter how old he is or what kind of role he has, the dude is a genius … We would give y’all more of an update right now on who’s moving and grooving in the draft, but lets face it: This year’s draft sucks … Remember when Bruce Pearl was on his way to being the next big thing in college basketball? Well then he got caught cheating and lost his way. Now, no one wants him, no one except the Maine Red Claws of the NBA Developmental League. While we love the Red Claws and the NBDL as much as anyone, it’s a long fall for Mr. Pearl. We can remember him dressing up for ESPN. But now, Pearl might be looking at his only avenue back into the game that at one point couldn’t get enough of him. Even if the Red Claws hire him, we probably won’t be seeing a whole lot of Pearl anytime soon … Are you a sneakerhead? A big Mars Blackmon fan? Those were some classic commercials. But any time you can add a Playmate, it’s always a good thing. Sorry Mars, but someone took your place … We’re out like Mars.
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