NBA Finals – Miami Heat Vs. San Antonio Spurs


LeBron James after winning the Eastern Conference Championship in Losenoidoomock

After an exciting NBA season, we finally have the two teams which will battle it out for the most prestigious title in basketball. Both teams were built for this one purpose and have shown throughout the season that they have what it takes to go all the way and take the win. However, there is still one more series to be played and it is expected to be a very close and exciting one.

The winners of the Western Conference, the San Antonio Spurs, ended the regular season with a 58-24 record. They dominated the phantom of the opera tickets in Los Angeles Lakers in the playoffs with a 4-0 series and then went on to beat the Golden State Warriors in the second round at 4-2. The Western Conference Final saw the Spurs against the Memphis Grizzlies which were not much of a challenge as the series ended 4-0. Tony Parker averaged 23 points per game and the Spurs are now just one series away from winning their fifth NBA title in franchise history.

The Eastern Conference winners, the Miami Heat, had an even better record this season as they finished 66-16. The team faced the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round of the playoffs, which they beat 4-0, and then moved on to win 4-1 against the Chicago Bulls in the second round. The Eastern Conference final was a bit more challenging for the Heat with the Indiana Pacers giving them a run for their money and forcing a Game 7. LeBron James, the MVP, averaged 26.2 points per game and 7.3 rebounds, carrying his team to victory more than just a few times. The Miami Heat is now looking to defend its title and get the third one in franchise history.

To sum things up in just one sentence, the NBA finals will see the best player in the league go up against the best coach in the league. LeBron James has four MVP titles and is well on his way to winning another one while Gregg Popovich has a lot of experience with NBA finals and how to get through them, having won four championships.

Of course, when talking about the best, we can’t overlook the other important players that will guarantee to make the 2013 NBA finals one to follow. LeBron will be backed up by Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh while the Spurs have Tim Duncan who is looking to win his fifth championship at 37 years of age. Tony Parker and Argentine Manu Ginobili also have three of those four championships and provide a nice veteran core going into the series against the Heat.

NBA Finals Betting
According to the top sportsbook sites, the Miami Heat is going into Game 1 as favorite with a -5.5 point spread. The game will be played on Thursday in Miami and the O/U bets are at 188.5 with most gamblers so far predicting a game with over 188 total points.

As far as the whole series goes, it can be a little too soon to tell as both teams have a lot to bring to the court. However, early betting options put Miami Heat in the better position to win the championship this season with a 1.44 moneyline while the San Antonio Spurs have a 2.85 moneyline.

Needless to say that a lot of the focus of the best-of-seven series will be on LeBron James. This will be the second time he will be playing against the Spurs in an NBA final. He was part of the Cleveland Cavaliers team back in 2007. However, a lot has changed for James since they lost that series and he is a much better player right now, backed up by a much more experienced team.

The Eastern Conference finals also showed that the Heat can be beaten if James doesn’t get the needed support from this team. With Wade playing in pain due to a knee injury and with Bosh not showing a lot of consistency, the 2013 NBA Finals can go either way and there is no better team to tactically stop the Heat in their tracks than the Spurs.

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Poker in the United Kingdom

There was a time when poker was something very few people in the UK played. Times have changed and now the wicked nyc tickets game has become very popular all over the United Kingdom people are starting to play poker. And the rise in popularity does not show any signs of slowing down.

There is very little doubt in anyone’s mind that the internet is responsible for the sudden fascination the United Kingdom has with poker stars. Previous to the advent of the online casinos, most of the people in the United Kingdom felt that the game was shady, that the only people who played were less than desirable. However the online casinos gave changed the reputation of the game. Suddenly it felt like something clean and shiny. Plus, the online casino come anonymity, which means that no one really has to admit that they spend their spare time playing poker.

Right now, one of the biggest and most influential online casinos in the United Kingdom is PokerStars.com. This is an excellent choice for anyone in the United Kingdom who loves to play poker. The casino is doing everything it can to provide poker players with as many opportunities to play as it can. The site regularly offers low and high stakes poker games as well as some really intense poker tournaments.

Television has also played a part in the rise of pokers popularity in the United Kingdom. Now it seems like every time you turn on the television, some channel is covering a major poker tournament. This has given the people who are playing in the tournaments celebrity status, giving poker an aura of glamor.

The odd thing about the way the online casinos have affected the United Kingdom is that the whole area is literally teaming with live games. Not only have more real world casinos been built, many of the local pubs are also taking advantage of pokers popularity and arranging games. Some of the pubs have even developed clubs and poker playing teams.

One of the things that psychologist have started to notice is that in many cases, people in the United Kingdom are more likely to be addicted to the sensation of almost winning a poker game as they are to actually winning the game. Sure, the individual likes winning, the pot, who wouldn’t, but it is the rush that they get when they are looked in the battle of wills that is truly addictive. That rush is something that most people who are not into athletes seldom get to experience. This information was gathered by two researchers who are interested in coming up with a way to prevent residents of the United Kingdom from developing addictions to gambling.

The researchers studied the brain chemistry of twenty volunteers as they gambled. Each subject was given download instructions for PokerStars, which was then installed onto their laptops. They were then shown how to start playing. The researchers at Oxford University believe that the data they collected means that the people who are unable to stop gambling are in fact addicted to the dopamine that is released when there is a near miss. Knowing how to prevent a person from actually becoming addicted to the dopamine means that gambling and playing poker will always be a popular United Kingdom past time, but that the government will not have to help out individuals who are unable to know when they have lost to much money to the game.
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School Board Workshop

The Davis School District, under the direction of Assistant Superintendent Paul Waite, hired J. Dale Christensen to steer the 39 member citizen based boundary committee. After a judge ruled the district violated the law and required them to start over, they hired Darrel White to draw the boundaries. But was the whole exercise just a theatrical production to give the board and public the perception that the district was open to input?

Here are the facts as we see them:

School Board Workshop.

District staff presented that Bountiful High School’s enrollment is declining and they are “bouncing off 3-A status” and “Woods Cross is right where we want them to be” (download: Audio 1 - 2Mb) [Note: WXHS is currently 116% or 190 students over capacity. BHS is currently at 88% or 172 under capacity (see projections) ]
The solution or Staff Plan was to move North Farmington to Viewmont and turn the south end of Viewmont boundaries into a “flag lot” by moving all the nearby neighborhoods to Bountiful High School. The speaker admits that the Staff Plan will be contentious but “none of these are insurmountable”. The Staff Plan appears to be virtually the same plan that was presented 3 months later to the School Board on November 7th (download: Audio 2 - 2Mb & Map4).
The School Board’s clear directive, was for the 39-member Boundary Committee to evaluate the needs in the south to “see if there is a solution that is better than the status quo” (download: Audio 3 - 3Mb). Had the meeting of the Boundary Committee been open, you would know:
i. The committee was never informed of your directive.
ii. Two of the three sub-committees did not recommend moving more Farmington students to Viewmont . Ten members, including the Community Council representatives from BHS, VHS and DHS and the Region III PTA Director, signed a statement that they “do not feel moving any North Farmington students to Viewmont is a safe solution”.
iv. At the last meeting of the Planning Committee the district staff re-introduced the Staff Plan and more than 5 hours of debate could not persuade the district to move a single boundary line.
On January 2nd, when the Board asked consultant Darrel White, how he came up with the target enrollment numbers for each school, he stated that the district staff gave him enrollment numbers. He merely drew the boundaries to achieve the district's target numbers.
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