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Submitted by Jim Hurley’s Network on Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at 12:00 AM

THE NBA PLAYOFFS:
IS IT PARTY TIME FOR
THE G-STATE WARRIORS?…
PLUS MLB KEY STATS …
AND NFL NEWS & NOTES

It’s been 40 long years since the last time the Golden State Warriors played in an NBA Finals … guess the feeling is they could afford to wait another couple of days then to wrap up their Western Conference Finals after getting whacked 128-115 by the 4.5-point home underdog Houston Rockets this past Monday Night in a Game 4 bash.
No doubt the Warriors are breathing a sigh of relief after the nasty fall-to-the-floor by MVP Stephen Curry wasn’t as bad as it appeared (and we don’t want to be hearing any silly second-guessing about the way Curry came back into Game 4 midway through the third quarter ‘cause all the medical folks said he was okay) and so now the mission at hand is to finish off the double-digit underdog Rockets in this Game 5 at “Roar-acle” Arena and thus give Curry a bit more R&R time till we get to the aforementioned NBA Finals beginning on Thursday, June 4.

Meanwhile, the biggest Game 5 question the host Warriors have here is how … exactly … do they contain Houston’s James Harden who finished 13-of-22 from the floor and 12-of-13 from the free-throw line en route to his monstrous 45-point game the other night … was it us or did it seem as if Harden had carte blanche to go to the hoop at any time knowing he would score, get fouled or both?

Gut feeling is Golden State’s savvy rookie head coach Steve Kerr (and his underrated staff) will have some plans in place to push Harden off his strong/left hand and make him meet some resistance in the paint and so don’t be surprised if agitator Andrew Bogut got his hands/arms/elbows in Harden’s grill a few times here and that could very well lead to some “ill feelings”.

On the flip side, the Warriors did make a nice little run back in Game 4 without Curry as Klay Thompson hit four trifectas during a nifty 23-9 second-quarter run and that scoring spree could provide a mental lift when Curry sits for a few minutes here or there.

Obviously, the Rockets were sitting on pins-and-needles regarding the status of C Dwight Howard who received a flagrant 1 foul for his elbow to Bogut’s head in the third quarter of Game 4 … at press time the league was reviewing the info and if Howard is suspended for his game then expect the Las Vegas price tag to climb to 13 or 14 points.

Now, here’s a look at how this series has gone between the Rockets and the Warriors (home teams in CAPS below):

DATEWINNERSPREADLOSERSCORE
5-19GOLDEN ST-10.5Houston110-106
5-21GOLDEN ST-10Houston99-98
5-23Golden St+1.5HOUSTON115-80
5-25HOUSTON+4.5Golden St.128-115

Note …
Jim Hurley and his Network of Handicappers and Bloggers continue to rake in the profits in this year’s NBA Playoffs and we’ll continue to rock-n-roll through the post-season all through the end of May and right into June too!
Go online right here at www.jimhurley.com or call our exclusive toll-free telephone # of 1-800-323-4453 each/every day and cash in with all the NBA Playoffs and remember there’s Major-League Baseball on tap every day too!

MLB KEY STATS
Let’s zip through some fun Key Stats here (note all figures below are through the games of May 25th):

LEFTY/RIGHTY STATS
The Colorado Rockies are 2-8 against left-handed starting pitching so far this year even though the team’s .424 slugging percentage in better than all but one team in the National League (Los Angeles Dodgers slugging .451) …

The Kansas City Royals are 18-9 when facing right-handed starting pitching this season and that includes an 11-5 home mark against RHPs and so the off-season move, in effect, to jettison righty-hitting DH Billy Butler for switch-hitting DH Kendrys Morales has been a plus …

The Los Angeles Dodgers are 24-13 when facing right-handed starting pitchers this season (and that includes a crazy 18-4 mark at home) …

The Milwaukee Brewers are a money-toasting 12-24 against RHP starters this season (that’s 6-12 at home; 6-12 away) and note the Brew Crew’s -55 run differential is the worst in the NL save for Philadelphia’s -56 …

The Minnesota Twins are an electric 15-5 when facing LHP starters this year after going 24-32 against lefty starters last season … think Torii Hunter’s been a major pick-me-up or not? …

The Oakland A’s have lost nine of their 10 games this season when challenged by lefty starters …

The San Francisco Giants are 8-3 against LHP starters this 2015 season (after going 30-30 versus lefty starters in last year’s championship season) …

And the Toronto Blue Jays are a dismal 6-13 on the road when facing righty starters this year (and the Jays are just 14-22 overall when facing righty starters) as both sluggers Jose Bautista (only 7 HR and a lowly .215 batting average) and Edwin Encarnacion (just 18 extra-base hits and a .237 batting average) have been real slow out of the MLB starting gate this year.

DAY/NIGHT STATS

The Baltimore Orioles are just 10-17 in night games this year …

The Chicago Cubs are a solid 16-9 in night games so far this season …

The Cincinnati Reds have lost 13-of-16 day games so far this baseball season …

The Cleveland Indians are just 7-13 in day games this 2015 campaign …

The Houston Astros are 11-4 in day games so far this season …

The Milwaukee Brewers are 9-20 in night games this season … and this after sporting winning night records in each of the six previous seasons …

The Minnesota Twins are 14-7 under the lights this 2015 MLB season …

The New York Mets are a dandy 11-4 in day games this year.

EXTRA INNINGS

The Kansas City Royals have won all three of their extra-inning games this season …

The Oakland A’s have lost all six of their extra-inning games thus far this season …

And the Pittsburgh Pirates are 0-6 in extra-inning games so far this season … maybe because the back of that bullpen is not quite as strong as advertised?

NFL NEWS & NOTES
Hey, have you grown tired of all this talk about Tom Brady and Greg Hardy and Adrian Peterson and Ray McDonald and all the other blokes who … one way or another … have stained the National Football League name in recent months?
So have we!
So, let’s zip ‘round the NFL quickly and ignore the bad boys and spend some time on a couple of topics:

Now that John Madden has weighed in and claimed Seattle Seahawks’ head coach Pete Carroll will be “haunted” and “tormented” by not winning the Super Bowl last season (and we agree!) you have to wonder what’s a realistic shot it is for the Seahawks this year to get back to a third straight Super Bowl.

Consider that the 2015 schedule could be a real key component as Seattle must open with back-to-back road games in St. Louis and Green Bay plus there’s a “short week” before the ‘Hawks play in San Francisco on Thursday, Oct. 22nd … maybe the question that Carroll and Company will face this year is whether the Seahawks can get to the Super Bowl in Santa Clara without the home-field advantage for the NFC Playoffs? …

Finally, the Tennessee Titans claim that first-round draftee QB Marcus Mariota (Oregon) has looked good under center in workouts so far and Titans head coach Ken Whisenhunt said Mariota made some great throws “on the corners, the comebacks, the stops, those things outside.”

But the $64,000 question is what happens if Mariota beats out incumbent QB Zach Mettenberger … does Mettenberger then get shipped off to Buffalo or Cleveland? … and if Mariota does not win the first-string job this summer will he get impatient if he doesn’t snag the starter’s spot by, say Week 5 or Week 6?
Stay tuned.

NOTE: More NBA Playoff coverage in the next Jim Sez plus there’s MLB and NFL News/Notes too coming soon.