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Open Floor: SI's NBA Podcast

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Hosted by SI senior writer Lee Jenkins, SI’s Open Floor podcast features guest appearances from some of the biggest names in the NBA.




L'Affaire de Burner Accounts, Coffee Shop Kyrie, and More Top 100

On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver talk through this week's Kevin Durant social media controversy, the summer of KD silencing the haters, and Golliver's thoughts on what we've learned from the past few days. At 25 minutes they answer more mail, with topics including: Kyrie Irving's triumphant and very much woke return to the media, Giannis' place in the NBA's top 10, John Wall vs. CP3, the value of Draymond Green, angry Bulls fans, the Wheel solution to the lottery, the future in...

Duration: 01:08:42

Our Five Favorite Games of All Time

On today's show Sharp and Golliver take a break from preview season to remember their five favorite games of all time. Highlights include: Reliving Damian Lillard's playoff game-winner against the Rockets, Steph Curry on a Saturday night in February, close encounters with Michael Jordan, Klay Thompson in Game 6, LeBron in Game 7, a field trip to Chapel Hill, and more.

Duration: 01:01:37

Breaking Down the Top 100 NBA Players

On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver are joined by Sports Illustrated's Rob Mahoney to talk through this year's list of the 100 best players in the NBA. Topics include: Elfrid Payton (96) vs. Dion Waiters and Malcolm Brogdon, the dynamism of Marvin Williams (88), Devin Booker (64) vs. Ben Golliver (not ranked), Avery Bradley (54) and Otto Porter (52) vs. Jae Crowder (44) and Danillo Gallinari (42), Boogie (23) vs. Gasol (24), Kyrie (21) vs. Conley (18), KD (2) vs. LeBron (1), and...

Duration: 01:23:00

MVP Odds, Sneaker Wars, and Lottery Reform

On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver take an early look at the MVP odds for 2018, and talk through the contenders to watch. At 25 minutes, they talk through KD and Steph sneaker wars, the NBA's proposed lottery reform, and potential landing spots for DeMarcus Cousins.

Duration: 00:56:38

The Nuclear Westbrook Trade, Anthony Davis, Future Hibberts

On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver answer questions from listeners. First: Why hasn't Russell Westrbook signed his extension, and why can't Golliver see that Paul George and Westbrook will on the Cavs in six months? Then: Players lying about their height, the best way to steal a superstar, Kyrie believers and Kyrie haters, the reason everyone is talking about Anthony Davis' future, and the current All-Star most likely to disappear in a few years. At the end: Melo trade ideas,...

Duration: 01:14:38

Lakers Tampering, Kyrie in Boston, Early Over/Unders

On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver return from their vacations and regroup after the past few weeks of NBA news. First they discuss the Lakers tampering charges. Was L.A.'s Paul George courtship business as usual, or a real problem for the NBA? If it's a problem, could it even be solved? At 20 minutes: More Kyrie Irving discussion, including expectations for this year's Celtics, the plight of Isaiah, and the debut of Coffee Shop Kyrie in Boston. At the end: they talk Nerlens...

Duration: 01:09:24

A tribute to Australian basketball fans with NBA TV's Leigh Ellis

On today's show Ben Golliver pays tribute to Open Floor's Australian listeners with help from Leigh Ellis, an analyst on NBA TV's The Starters. Why are there so many rabid NBA fans in Australia? How did Ellis get into NBA hoops as a child in Sunbury in the 1980s? Ellis hails the 1987 All-Star Game, shows off his Rain Man recall of statistics, correctly names the greatest basketball card set of all time, and breaks down which 1980s stars would succeed in the modern era. Most importantly, he...

Duration: 01:08:47

Kyrie Irving traded for Isaiah Thomas: Winners, losers, predictions, repercussions and more

On today's show Andrew Sharp makes a triumphant return from vacation to join Ben Golliver for an emergency podcast breaking down the Cavaliers' trade of Kyrie Irving to the Celtics for a package that includes Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder and a first-round pick. Did Cleveland's rookie GM Koby Altman hit a home run? How will the move affect LeBron James's future with the Cavaliers? Why did Danny Ainge decide to trade for Irving when previous trades involving superstars repeatedly failed to...

Duration: 01:00:33

NBA hot seat watch with Danny Leroux

On today's show Ben Golliver phones NBA writer Danny Leroux of The Athletic and Real GM Radio to discuss which GMs and coaches will be on the hot seat next season. How will this summer's many front-office changes alter the landscape going forward? Are the Pelicans destined for a major overhaul? Will star departures create ripple effects in Atlanta, Chicago and Indiana? Should Doc Rivers be on the clock in LA? How bad do the Bulls need to get before they clean house? Is Memphis a good...

Duration: 01:08:15

ESPN's Kevin Pelton breaks down RPM win projections

On today's show Ben Golliver chats with NBA writer and analytics guru Kevin Pelton of ESPN Insider about his 2017-18 RPM win projections. Why are the Warriors projected to backslide after a strong summer? Are the Raptors really going to fall out of the East's elite? Can Minnesota vault all the way into home-court advantage? Is Houston, not Cleveland or San Antonio, now the biggest challenger to Golden State? How will the West's bubble shake out? Who will be the East's worst team? Plus,...

Duration: 01:09:41

SI's Chris Ballard talks Monty, Hinkie, Kobe, Dirk, and pick-up hoop ethics

On today's show Ben Golliver chats with SI senior writer Chris Ballard. Why is Ballard drawn to weighty topics like suicide (Ryan Anderson), tragedy (Monty Williams) and a mid-career crisis (Sam Hinkie), and how does he get his interview subjects to open up on such personal material? What is it like inside the Spurs' secret curtain? After writing countless Kobe Bryant stories over the last 17 years, which version of the Lakers star is his favorite? Will Dirk Nowitzki be properly remembered...

Duration: 01:12:25

Rob Mahoney joins for a deep dive into SI's Top 100 NBA Players list

Ben Golliver invites SI writer and "Breakaway" podcast host Rob Mahoney on for an extra-length look at SI's annual Top 100 NBA players list. Ben and Rob lay out their ranking process and criteria, look back on 2017's biggest debates, and highlight key philosophical developments from the 2017-18 season. Then, they field questions and hate mail from Andrew Sharp, addressing Booker, Giannis, DeRozan, Jokic, Millsap and many others. They close by taking a victory lap over 2017's...

Duration: 01:26:32

10 Questions about Kyrie Irving and the Cavs

On today's show, Sharp and Golliver talk through Kyrie Irving's trade request and the many layers of confusion in Cleveland. Questions include: What percentage of this is a response to LeBron's summer? Whose Instagram stories do you believe, and who leaked news of the trade request? When did Kyrie indicate he wanted out, and what changed since the Finals? Is it possible that Kyrie stays? If not, where will he create his next self-sustaining community: New York, San Antonio, Miami, New...

Duration: 01:22:37

SI's Lee Jenkins dishes on PG's welcome party, LeBron 2018 scenarios, Russ & Lonzo

On today's show Ben Golliver catches up with SI senior writer Lee Jenkins. What did Jenkins learn about Paul George's future from his recent visit to Oklahoma City? Why will Russell Westbrook will be even more fascinating in 2018, and will he sign his extension? What's Jenkins' take on Lonzo and LaVar Ball, and does he prefer the Spurs Banana Boat or the LeBronzo Lakers as a LeBron James destination in 2018? Is Cleveland still in the mix? At the end: some advice for aspiring journalists....

Duration: 01:15:01

LeBron and Lonzo, Vegas Standouts, and End-of-Summer Mailbag

On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver check in one more time from Vegas summer league. First: What is going on with LeBron James? Why was Lonzo wearing Nikes against the Sixers? Where do Magic and Pelinka fit in? How is it connected? Then: Who are the standouts among the rookies in Vegas? Is Donovan Mitchell about to take over the league? What about Dennis Smith? How good would OKC have to be for Paul George to stay? Why hasn't John Wall signed his extension? Who are on the "if he...

Duration: 01:02:01

ESPN's Chris Haynes on Hayward, NBA Scoops, and the Warriors Beat

On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver are joined in Las Vegas with ESPN's Chris Haynes. At the outset, they talk through the mechanics of Haynes' 4th of July reporting on Gordon Hayward's free agency. When did he know? How did he handle the backlash? Did he ever worry that he might swing Hayward's decision and become a lifelong villain in Boston? Then they talk through the culture of scoops, in general, and the lessons Haynes has learned over the past few years. At the end, Haynes...

Duration: 00:58:04

Watching Lonzo Ball, The Celtics Offseason, and Summer League Mail

On today's show Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver are in Vegas and checking in after the first weekend of summer league. First, what are the takeaways from the opening weekend of Lonzo Ball? And what about LaVar? At 20 minutes, they talk through the Harden extension and the Knicks Tim Hardaway signing. At 35 minutes, they talk about the Avery Bradley trade and offer some final thoughts on the puzzling summer of the Celtics. From there, more mail: How did the Otto Porter deal change after the...

Duration: 01:13:51

LeBron's Next Move and Free Agency Winners and Losers

On today's show Sharp and Golliver recap more of free agency. First: Golliver crosses over to become a banana boat truther with a new for LeBron's plans next summer. Then: Winners and losers from free agency, including thoughts on the Sixers and the Wolves, the summer Lakers, Clippers confusion and the Blake Museum, the summer of Dan Gilbert, Jazz optimism, and Celtics follow-ups. At the end: John Wall in no-man's land, Westbrook and Presti allowing us to pretend everything is OK, and...

Duration: 01:21:06

Hayward's July 4th, PG in OKC, and KD's Discount

On today's show, Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver regroup after five or six days wild days of NBA free agency. First, they talk through the awkward rollout of Gordon Hayward's decision and what Hayward means for the Celtics summer. Then they move to the Pacers baffling Paul George trade, the possibilities for Paul George in Oklahoma City, and the summer of Sam Presti. At the end: the Raptors, Kevin Durant's discount, and Paul Millsap to Denver, and Nuggets workout videos.

Duration: 01:00:37

The CP3 Trade, Goodbye Phil, and Free Agency Preview

On today's show, Andrew Sharp and Ben Golliver answer questions from listeners and preview free agency. First: What does the CP3 trade mean for the Rockets? What does it mean for the Clippers? Is Austin Rivers catching more heat than his father? And how realistic are the summer '18 banana boat dreams? At 30 minutes: Why wasn't Avery Bradley on the All-Defense team, and does Lou Williams have a point about sad podcast nerds? At 40 minutes: Are the Knicks quietly in good shape after Phil...

Duration: 01:23:56

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