In this week’s edition of Around the Dorm, “Ref” Malcolm Luck asked our panel of three experts — Kevin Kistner, Ryan Jin and Arjun Gupta — three questions: 1. Can Dwyane Wade lead the Miami Heat into the playoffs? 2. With the NCAA tournament coming up, which school do you see becoming a Cinderella team? 3. Which team has a better offense right now: the New York Yankees or the Boston Red Sox?
1. Can Dwyane Wade lead the Miami Heat into the playoffs?
Kevin: As a big fan of Dwyane Wade, I do believe he has what it takes to carry the Heat to the playoffs. The Eastern Conference is not nearly as strong as the Western Conference, so to say the Heat can make the playoffs is very reasonable. Sometimes, chemistry and dedication get a lot further than just raw talent and I think this Miami team has great chemistry. With Wade coming back, the city of Miami is just glad to have him back. A loose and comfortable Wade might play better without feeling any pressure.
Ryan: Dwyane Wade is looking pretty damn vintage as of late. In that fresh new vice-style home jersey, his confidence has only grown. Look no further than that iconic game winner over Ben Simmons and the Philadelphia Sixers. Though his critics might look at his age, his numbers don’t lie. He’s averaging 14 points, four rebounds and three assists per game this season, which are pretty impactful numbers if you’re thinking about a veteran’s contributions in the scope of Miami’s young roster. With the help of energetic guys like Hassan Whiteside, Dion Waiters and James Johnson who push the in-game pace, the Heat could just lead itself into the playoffs.
Arjun: Yes, Dwyane Wade can lead the Miami Heat into the playoffs because Dwyane Wade is an all-star veteran player who has been playing in the league for 15 seasons now. Over the span of his amazing NBA career, he has accumulated many great awards and titles. He is a three-time NBA champion, an NBA Finals MVP, a 12-time NBA All-Star, a two-time All-NBA First Team, three-time All-NBA second team and an NBA scoring champion. All in all, he has the necessary qualities and the high-caliber skills to lead this team into the promise land.
Ryan gets 3 points for alluding to Wade’s game winner. Arjun receives 2 points for mentioning Wade’s accolades. Kevin receives 2 points for comparing the conferences.
2. With the NCAA tournament coming up, which school do you see becoming a “Cinderella” team?
Kevin: In the foreseeable future, I can see St. Bonaventure University becoming a Cinderella team. They are one of the best perimeter shooting teams in the nation. They emphasize the saying “you live and die by the 3.” If St. Bonaventure gets a good matchup they like and are feeling confident and find their sweet stroke, this is a team that can put up a lot of points to compete with anyone in the nation. It’s all about creating the runs and limiting the opponents to as few runs as possible to win during this heated tournament. If this team strings a good few possessions together, they could be scary.
Ryan: College basketball hasn’t always been my thing, but in recent years I’ve gotten much more involved due to Sportscenter, Bleacher Report or House of Highlights hyping up crazy game winners and wet shots. Speaking of crazy wet shots, Trae Young and the University of Oklahoma Sooners are looking pretty good as a Cinderella team. I mean, Trae Young is Cinderella in the flesh. His range and consistency are truly magical. I’ll be surprised if the Sooners get knocked out before the Sweet Sixteen, because I’m hoping to see them make some headlines this month.
Arjun: I see the University of Nevada, Reno becoming the Cinderella team and making a deep run in the NCAA tournament. They are the Mountain West regular season champions, who have won eight of their last nine games, including a blowout victory against University of Nevada, Las Vegas. The team is averaging about 84 points per game and have four players who each are scoring over 13 points per game. Jordan Caroline is also a key player to watch out for as he is nearly averaging a double-double with 17.3 points and 8.8 rebounds per game.
Kevin gets 3 points for mentioning a legitimate Cinderella candidate and its offensive strength. Ryan gets 1 point because Trae Young and the University of Oklahoma are overrated. Arjun gets 1 point for mentioning a team that is too mainstream for the Cinderella label.
3. Which team has a better offense right now: the New York Yankees or the Boston Red Sox?
Kevin: Regardless of where I live, I think the New York Yankees have the better offense right now. They have three of the best home run sluggers in the game right now — with Gary Sanchez, Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge, it could be as simple as three swings producing three runs. With the addition of Yankee Stadium being very well known as a hitter’s ballpark, it only creates an even more of an advantage for the Yankees. The Yankees might not be the better team in what is called manufacturing runs, but the Yankees do have the firepower to put up over four runs a night.
Ryan: How is this even a question? The “Boston Red Sux” can’t even hold a candle to the dominating powerhouse striking fear into all pitchers’ hearts that is the Yankees’ starting lineup. All the buzz about New York’s new “big three” of Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez is finally paying off as spring training offers the Yankees an opportunity to flex early. Let’s not forget Brett Gardner, the all around complete hitter and catcher who has been smacking dingers all preseason. In their spring training matchup today, it’s no question the Yankees’ offensive lineup will have pitchers Chris Sale and David Price absolutely trembling on the mound.
Arjun: The New York Yankees have a better offense right now and will have one of the league’s best offensive lineups for the upcoming season. The Bronx Bombers already had a potent lineup and made it even more lethal with the addition of the reigning National League MVP Giancarlo Stanton, who has 7.6 wins above replacement and an MLB-leading 59 home runs. Now paired with Aaron Judge, the Rookie of the Year and the runner up for the American League MVP award, along with Greg Bird, Aaron Hicks, Brett Gardner, Gary Sanchez and Didi Gregorius, the Bronx Bombers can and will do some serious damage. Last season, the Yankees led the league in walks, were second in runs scored, third in on-base percentage and fourth in slugging average.
Arjun receives 3 points for alluding to the Yankees’ potent offense before the acquisition of Stanton. Kevin gets 2 points for mentioning the size of Yankee Stadium. Ryan gets 1 point for incorrectly saying Brett Gardner is a catcher.
Kevin wins ATD 7-6-5