2021 Oscars Discussion, Vol. 7: Will SAG Awards Alter Oscar Race?

Promising Young Woman

What is “The Big Three?” It’s not LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris Bosh. The trio I’m referring to is the Golden Globes, SAG Awards, and Oscars. These are the three biggest mainstream awards for films. If a film or actor does well at the Globes and SAGs, then it’s probably going to win an Oscar.

On Sunday, the SAG Awards will hand out some hardware. After Sunday night, will the Oscar races heat up or cool down?

Will The SAG Awards Alter The Oscar Race?

Do the SAG Awards affect the Oscar race?

The short answer is yes. The SAG Awards matter. Just look at last year’s results.

Every winner in the five major categories went on to win the Oscar in their corresponding category. I doubt that this trend will happen two years in a row. Why is that? Look at the Outstanding Performance by a Cast category for 2020 below. What notable film is missing?

The answer is Nomadland, which is the heavy favorite at -400 to win Best Picture according to Vegasinsider. Since 2010, five winners of Outstanding Cast went on to win Best Picture at the Oscars. During that same time frame, 2017 (The Shape of Water) and 2018 (Green Book) where the Best Picture winner didn’t receive an Outstanding Cast nomination.

Despite the lack of a SAG nom, Nomadland won the top prize at the Golden Globes and the Producers Guild Awards. The latter is noteworthy because the PGA winner won the Oscar for Best Picture 10 of the last 13 years. I’m expecting Nomadland to make it 11 out of 14. If I had to pick one film to play spoiler, it would be Minari. If Minari wins the SAG for Outstanding Cast, it could ride that momentum to the Oscars just like Parasite did last year.

In the acting categories, the male races seem all but over. The SAG Awards are voted on by actors and the acting community’s reaction to Chadwick Boseman’s campaign has been universally positive. He may receive every single first-place vote for Outstanding Lead Actor. The same could be said for Daniel Kaluuya, whose captivating performance in Judas and the Black Messiah should result in SAG and Oscar gold.

On the female side, it’s a bit cloudier. Frances McDormand, who has won two SAG Awards for Leading Actress in a Film and two Oscars for Best Actress, is the favorite, and rightfully so. She’s awesome in everything she does including Nomadland. However, watch out for Carey Mulligan. Her performance in Promising Young Woman garnered excellent reviews, which led to important wins at Critics Choice Awards and National Board of Review. Whoever wins the SAG will be the favorite to win the Oscar.

In the supporting actress category, your guess is good as mine. You might be better off closing your eyes and pointing at a name. Maria Bakalova, my personal pick to win, and Youn Yuh-jung are the two names to watch. The two women have gone back and forth all season, alternating wins in every critic’s circle beside the Golden Globes. Bakalova recently won the Critics Choice Award so I give her the slight edge going into the SAG.

Previous Discussions:

Out of all the winners at the Golden Globes, who will win an Oscar? Leave your thoughts in the comments or tweet us, @unafraidshow.

Gardner Minshew: Why Teams Should Trade For Jaguars QB

Gardner Minshew

The quarterback that NFL teams should be trading for is not on the New York Jets, San Francisco 49ers, or Houston Texans. This quarterback plays for the Jacksonville Jaguars and no, it’s not C. J. Beathard. The aforementioned quarterback is Gardner Minshew.

Yes, the dude with the killer mustache and jorts should be a quarterback of interest for teams who either need a backup or want to bring in some competition.

With the additions of Trevor Lawrence* and CJ Beathard, the Jaguars’ quarterback room has no room for Minshew. The team would be doing themselves a disservice to keep Minshew as their third quarterback. The Jaguars should trade Minshew in the coming months, and according to Ian Rapoport, teams are interested.

There is a 99.9% chance the Jaguars draft Trevor Lawrence with the first pick. Let’s assume it happens.

If a team needs a starting QB, Minshew may not be as appealing as Deshaun Watson, Jimmy Garoppolo, or Sam Darnold. However, between his age, talent, and contract, there’s a lot to like about Minshew.

First, Minshew is entering his third season in the NFL. Minshew is 24 to turning 25. Do you want to know what other quarterbacks are 24/25? Dwayne Haskins, Drew Lock, Daniel Jones, and Darnold are all 24 and under. Outside of Darnold and (maybe) Jones, is Minshew on the same talent level as the other guys? I’ll go one step further and say he’s better than Haskins and Lock.

Minshew’s age might be appealing, but his contract is extremely desirable. One of the best ways to build teams in the NFL is to go all-in with a quarterback on a rookie deal and surround him with quality talent. In other words, it’s the exact opposite of what the Jets did with Darnold. With a cap hit of under $1m in each of the next two seasons, Minshew is a cheap option.

Obviously, the most important aspect of Minshew’s appeal is his play on the field. Is he a great quarterback? No. Is he a good quarterback who can produce and win games? I believe he can.

During his rookie season in 2019, Minshew went 6-6 as a starter and threw for 3271 yards, 21 TD, 6 INT with a 60.6% completion percentage. Not bad for a 6th-round pick. Last year, Minshew played most of the year with a thumb fracture and ligament strain. Still, Minshew raised his completion percentage to 66.1%. Overall, he’s thrown for 27 TDs and 11 INTs in two seasons. Keep in mind that the Jaguars traded or cut most of their “good” players in 2020.

Numbers don’t tell the entire story with Minshew. He’s deceptively mobile, especially in the pocket. Minshew became the leader of the team once the organization chose him over Nick Foles, who was traded to the Bears. Likability isn’t towards the top of important characteristics I’d want in a quarterback, but how can you not root for a guy like Minshew that shows up and gives it his all each week?

To acquire Minshew, teams would most likely have to trade at least a fourth-round pick. Would you rather take a flyer on a Day 3 quarterback or trade for Minshew? I’ll go one set further and say Minshew is better than any QB you’ll find on Day 3. Swapping a fourth for a cheap, proven commodity seems like a no-brainer.

There are quite a few teams with quarterback issues. Either these teams signed uninspiring options in the offseason or they might run out someone with more questions than answers.

I’m going to name some teams and their quarterback situations. Tell me which option you’d rather have.

Chicago Bears: 33-year-old Andy Dalton, who signed for $10 million, and Nick Foles, who was traded to Chicago from Jacksonville, or Minshew?

Denver Broncos: Drew Lock, who had a 57.3% completion percentage and 15 INTs in 2020, or Minshew?

New England Patriots: Cam Newton, who threw for 8 TD and 10 INT in 15 games last season, and Jared Stidham, who can’t even get on the field, or Minshew? Jim Nagy, the director of the Senior Bowl and former NFL scout, also believes the Pats should trade for Minshew.

Washington Football Team: Ryan Fitzpatrick, who signed for $10 million, and Taylor Heinicke or Minshew? Before Fitzpatrick signed, FanSided analyst Matt Verderame said, “Gardner Minshew, if I’m Washington, I’m calling them every day, ‘You want a third-round pick? We’ll give you a third-round pick.'”

If you’re like me, you answered Minshew in every option. Minshew produced and won games for an awful team. Imagine what he could do in the right system.

Is Gardner Minshew a franchise quarterback? Probably not. But if a team needs an effective backup to compete with the starter, why not take a chance on Minshew?

This Is Us Season 5 Episode 11 Recap: Uncle Nicky Comes To Town

Uncle Nicky This Is Us

Uncle Nicky’s origins have been somewhat mysterious since his introduction. We know Nicky and Jack were close until that fateful day in the Vietnam War when Uncle Nicky’s mistake accidentally led to the death of a child. That resulted in a separation between the brothers as Jack tried to put his life pre-Vietnam behind him even if that meant alienating Nicky. Last night on This Is Us, we received a glimpse at a happier Nicky and what his life could have been.

This Is Us Season 5 Episode 11 Recap: “One Small Step …”

Moon Man

Although he became jaded and secluded in his elder years, Nicky was quite the opposite as a young man. Nicky was a shy, happy, and intelligent guy who lived with his parents and worked at a veterinary clinic. On the day of the moon landing in 1969, Jack, who moved out of the house, visits Nicky and tells him to get out of the house and go out on a date. It turns out that Nicky has the perfect girl to take out in Sally, his coworker.

Nicky and Sally bond over his love and appreciation for the moon. The duo become inseparable as Nicky forms a deep, loving connection with Sally and her van, “Pearl.” One night, Sally asks Nicky to come with her to Woodstock, and then to California to work on her cousin’s farm. Nicky hesitantly agrees at first, but after receiving Jack’s blessing, decides to take the leap of faith with Sally and travel the country.

Unfortunately, Nicky develops cold feet on the night he’s supposed to leave with Sally. After bonding with his father over the moon, Nicky decides to stay, mainly to protect his mother from his abusive father. Nicky noted that he’s “better with her when I’m around.”

The “What Could Have Been” Meet Up

We know that Jack and Nicky met up at least once post-Vietnam when Jack essentially cut Nicky out of his life. It turns out there was a chance for a second meet-up. A few years after Vietnam, Nicky is in bad shape and clearly needs help. His old war buddy tells him about meeting up with some members of their unit to celebrate one of their engagements. More importantly, Nicky learns that Jack will be there.

Despite his fears, Nicky musters up the courage to attend this party. Upon arrival, Nicky notices Jack enter the building, but hesitates to say anything and remains in the parking lot. Inside, Jack receives advice on how to deal with his tough past and how to move on. He’s told to forget about his old life, lock it away, and focus on forming a new life with Rebecca. This advice explains why Jack moved on from Nicky. However, Nicky still had a chance to speak with Jack in the parking lot. Just when he’s about to call out his name, Nicky stops in his tracks when Jack looks at the engagement ring he bought for Rebecca. The brothers then go their separate ways.

Great Uncle Nicky

In the present-day on This Is Us, Nicky surprises Kevin and Madison at their doorstep. He explains how he received an invitation for the twins’ baptism and decided to show up even if the ceremony was taking place on Zoom. As someone with a 90-year-old Grandma who doesn’t use Zoom, I totally sympathize with this mistake.

Anyways, before arriving in Los Angeles, Nicky enlisted the help of Cassidy to prepare for the trip. Nicky is really excited about the trip and even makes two beautiful snowglobes by hand to give to the twins. Unfortunately, Nicky can’t bring his presents past TSA, which leads to Nicky accidentally destroying the presents. This reminds me of Chris Rock’s rant about airport security and how it used to be fun to fly.

In typical Kevin fashion, he starts planning activities to do with his uncle and the twins, which freaks Nicky out since he’s not used to his much love. After debating on pulling an Irish Exit to Kevin, Cassidy talks him off the ledge and encourages him to accept their love.

Late at night, Nicky sneaks into the twins’ room and gives an impassioned speech about his life and how regret and fear have held him back. Nick compares the moon landing to his life, that the impossible became possible. If man could land on the moon, then Nicky could be happy.

This was arguably one of my favorite episodes of the season. Uncle Nicky finally got the backstory he deserved. Hopefully, Uncle Nicky is here to stay.

Did you enjoy last night’s episode of This Is Us? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet us, @unafraidshow.

How Much Would You Pay To Watch A New Movie At Home?

Black widow

I miss movie theaters. As someone who hasn’t been inside a theater in well over a year (NYC theaters just opened a few weeks ago), I’m ready to sit on a creaky chair, ruin my posture, and snack on some salty popcorn. I even miss paying an absurd price for a ticket, which ranges from $13-$17 depending on the theater.

Let’s focus on price for a second. In most situations, theaters were closed due to the pandemic so studios either released straight to VOD or delayed the release. Because of this, many studios skipped the theatrical experience in favor of video on demand for a premium price of $19.99.

After I paid $19.99 to rent The King of Staten Island last June, my dad said, “$19.99? Expensive movie!” Is twenty dollars an absurd price to pay for a movie at home?

If you’re an average person, then you’re probably not shelling out the money to pay for a premium movie when there are hundreds of movies to choose from on services like Netflix, Amazon, Disney+, Hulu, etc. Throw in the fact that streaming services also provide binge-worthy TV shows like The Office and many moviegoers are passing on a $19.99 movie.

What if the movie was from Marvel or Star Wars? What if Leonardo DiCaprio says the hell with Apple TV+ and releases Killers of the Flower Moon straight to VOD for $24.99? What are you willing to pay for giant blockbusters with popular IP and star power?

This question will be put to the test with Black Widow, which will release in theaters July 9 and on Disney+ with Premier Access, which comes with a $30 rental fee. So in addition to a Disney+ subscription, subscribers will need to pay $30 to access Black Widow if they want to watch it at home. If not, then they can see it in a theater.

Will I pay $30 for Black Widow?

Probably not, but that’s because I will see it in a theater. However, if I want to watch the film with a group of friends or family members, I might elect to watch it on Disney+ since the $30 price split between a few people will be less than a movie ticket.

The Black Widow new got me thinking about the future of premium VOD and rentals. What would I be willing to spend to watch a movie I desperately wanted to see? Is there a price that’s too high?

To test this theory, I ran down some highly-anticipated movies that either just came out or will come out in the future and determined how much I would pay to watch them at home. Since I’m the only one answering, I’m paying full price for the movie and watching it alone for this hypothetical. I’m not factoring in the split cost of watching with other people.

Black Widow – $19.99

$19.99 might be expensive for indies or a mid-budget film, but for a Marvel movie with a rumored budget of $200m, $19.99 is a fair asking price for Black Widow. If theaters weren’t open, then I would pay the $30. In fact, if I could own Black Widow, I’d easily pay the $30. But since it’s only a rental, $30 is a bit steep for one guy.

Tenet – $19.99

There’s no test involved here because I bought Tenet for $19.99. Inversion!

Dune – $30

Let’s pretend you had to pay a premium price for Dune instead of watching on HBO Max. Dune is one of my most anticipated movies in 2021. With a stellar cast and Denis Villeneuve (one of my favorite directors) at the helm, I’m willing to pay at least $30 for this sci-fi epic. More worms, more money.

F9 – $50

It’s hard to put a price on your family, and Dominic Toretto is my brother. I’ve waited four years for my Fast & Furious family to return to theaters. I’d pay $50 right now to watch one of my favorite franchises tear up the (TV) screen.

No Time To Die – $100 or more

I lied. I pay $100 for No Time to Die. I need Bond back in my life. Also, shoutout to me for this analysis. Spot on?

How much money would you pay to watch a movie at home? Leave your thoughts in the comments or tweet us, @unafraidshow.

2021 NCAA Tournament: The Bracket Manifesto

Gonzaga Basketball NCAA Tournament

After a two-year wait, the NCAA Tournament is finally upon us. As Upper East Side resident and CBS analyst, Jon Rothstein, likes to say…

The NCAA Tournament is one of my favorite events of the year. For three weeks, college basketball will dominate the sports world. In particular, the first day of the tournament is one of my best days of the year. 12 hours of basketball, food, gambling, and anarchy. Sign me up.

With the tournament comes the bracket. According to American Gaming Association, 36.7 million Americans say they will fill out a bracket. I’d venture to say that more than half of those people don’t watch college basketball, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It just means that a lot of people are going to fill out brackets and enter gambling pools.

Let’s just call a spade a spade. It takes a lot of luck to win your pool. However, there are some tips and trends to follow that could set you up for success. As someone who won a national tournament challenge and spoke on CBS Sports Radio about my victory, I may know a thing or two about the bracket…

This is my bracket manifesto.

I’m not going to tell you which teams to pick. However, I’m going to give you the keys on how to fill out your bracket. This manifesto is your tour guide. You still have to arrive at the destination, but I’m giving you the map to follow.

*Disclaimers are hot in the streets right now thanks to the “I am not a financial advisor, but I’m going to buy this stock” tweets. I want to state that I am not an expert. I’m just a guy who has found some success filling out brackets. This is MY strategy.

When In Doubt, Pick The Favorite

This is my number one rule. When in doubt, pick the favorite. It sounds simple, but so many of us fall into the trap of picking the perfect upset instead of focusing on who wins titles, which are the top seeds. There have been four champions since 1983 that have been seeded worse than five. The last team to do it was UCONN in 2014. If you picked UCONN in 2014 to win it all, you probably won your pool. Congrats, but that was an anomaly. Stick to a team in the top 5 as your champion.

Focus On Keeping Your Sweet Sixteen Intact

In most pools, brackets will be rewarded for advancement. If your pool rewards an upset win with more points, then pick more upsets. However, there are more points up for grabs in the later rounds. Don’t freak out if you don’t pick the correct #12 over #5 or #11 or #6 in the first round. If you had that team losing the next round, then it’s not a huge loss. Focus on having as many Sweet 16 teams as possible. If your bracket has 12 of 16 teams heading into the second weekend of the NCAA Tournament, then you’re in great shape.

First Time Final Four Participants Rarely Win It All

There’s a first for everything. Teams like Alabama and Tennessee may be trending in the right direction. Both squads are looking to reach their first Final Four in school history. However, only one team in the last 35 years has won a title during their first trip to the Final Four and that was UCONN in 1999. As someone who loves this Alabama team and will pick them to go far, it would be unwise to pick them as my champion.

The #11 over #6 Is The New #12 Over #5

One of the most popular pieces of advice shared during tournament week is the #12 over #5 upset. “You need to pick at least one 12-seed to win,” said one of your coworkers who thinks he’s an expert. Although your coworker is probably a snob, they’re right. In the past 40 years, at least one 12-seed beat a 5-seed in all but five tournaments. You should pick at least one 12-seed to win in the first round, but the 11-seeds are becoming the new must-have upset. 11-seeds are 21-19 against 6-seeds in the last 40 tournament games. So which Syracuse 11-seed wins a game in the first round?

Blue – The Color Of Champions

With apologies to red, orange, yellow, green, purple, white, and black, blue is the official color of champions. Since Syracuse won in 2003, only one other champion did not have a shade of blue on their uniform and that was Louisville in 2013. Technically, that championship never took place! This year, Gonzaga, Michigan, and Illinois are all 1-seeds not because of their resume, but because of the blue on their jerseys. Sorry, Baylor.

Cherish this NCAA Tournament. We were all robbed of March Madness last year. COVID-19 can’t ruin this one, right?

Right?

Please don’t ruin it, COVID.

What are your tips for filling out brackets? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet us, @unafraidshow.

Predictions For Second Half Of 2020-2021 NBA Season

Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz

The first half of the NBA season is like the scene in Avengers: Infinity War where Thanos explains that it cost him everything in order to execute the snap. Did the NBA complete the first half of the season? Yes. Am I ecstatic that it happened? Absolutely? Did the NBA also postpone over 30 games due to COVID protocols? Unfortunately, yes.

On the court, it’s been fun to watch the Lakers reestablish their dominance and the Nets piece together a new super team. Off the court, it’s concerning to see Adam Silver and the front office implement confusing COVID protocols. Plus, the league hosted an All-Star game that many deemed unnecessary. If the NBA can make it to the finish line in July without too many bumps in the road, then all is forgiven

The past is behind us, and the second half of the season is ready to begin. Will the Jazz secure the 1-seed? Who will win the MVP? Can the Knicks make the playoffs? Here are my second half predictions.

Milwaukee Bucks And Utah Jazz Will Be The Top Seeds In Each Conference

Before the second half of the season kicks off, here are the standings as of 3/9.

The battle for conference supremacy is beginning to take shape. In the East, the 76ers currently hold the top spot with the Nets less than a half-game behind them. In third place are the Bucks, who are winners in six of their last seven games. If Giannis didn’t win a second-straight MVP, he would be at the top of the MVP race this season with averages of 29.0 points, 11.7 rebounds, and 5.9 assists. The Sixers and Nets are better teams, but health concerns with their star players could derail their hopes for the top seed. Both of their mindsets will be to be as healthy as possible when it comes to the playoffs, even if that means sacrificing regular-season games to rest players. I think it’s quite the opposite for the Bucks. They want that 1-seed to avoid Philly and Brooklyn and will go all out to make sure they receive homecourt advantage throughout the playoffs.

In the first half, the Utah Jazz were the both best team in the Western Conference and the NBA. The Jazz boast a top-five offense, a top-five defense, and the best record in the NBA. This team is built that’s built to win a lot of games in the regular season thanks to their defense and depth. For my gamblers out there, the Jazz were the best team ATS in the first half with a record of 25-11. However, ask 100 people who will represent the West in the NBA Finals. You’d be hard-pressed to find 10 people who pick Utah. The disrespect is real, but they’ll have a chance to silence their critics if the road to the NBA Finals goes through Utah.

Team To Ascend – Miami Heat; Team To Descend – San Antonio Spurs

The Miami Heat were plagued with bad luck and injuries throughout most of the first half, which included their star, Jimmy Butler, who missed 10 games due to COVID-19. Despite a 7-14 start, the Heat battled back to 18-18 heading into the all-star break, which is sixth in the Eastern Conference. Things are about to get easier for the Heat with one of the four easiest second-half schedules. Butler, Bam Adebayo, and the rest of the Heat should climb to a top-4 seed before the season ends in May.

On the flip side, the San Antonio Spurs are like a cockroach; they never die. Somehow, the Spurs are in sole possession of the 7-seed with a record of 18-14. DeMar DeRozan consistently puts up 20-points per night, but his seven assists per night are paying huge dividends. Dejounte Murray and Keldon Johnson are a fun, young duo that continues to progress each game. However, the West is a gauntlet and with teams like the Mavericks, Warriors, Grizzlies, and Pelicans lurking in the standings, it will be hard for the Spurs to stay in the top-8. Plus, the Spurs face the second-toughest schedule from here on out, according to FiveThirtyEight.

The Knicks Will Make The Play-In Tournament 

I couldn’t go an entire article without mentioning the biggest surprise in the NBA, the New York Knicks. I can’t express how much I love this team. All-Star Julius Randle drank “Michael’s Secret Stuff” in the offseason with career highs in nearly every statistical category. Tom Thibodeau has instilled a toughness and tenacity that’s been missing for nearly a decade. Do the Knicks still frustrate the hell out of me? Absolutely. When Thibs is playing the starters in the last two minutes of a 20 point blowout against the Pistons, I want the suffering to end. However, it’s so refreshing to root for a competent basketball team again.

As great of a start it’s been, the Knicks will need to play even better in the second half to make the playoffs. The schedule makers did the Knicks no favors as New York faces the third toughest schedule in the second half. The Knicks are in dire need of shooting as they rank towards the bottom in team field goal percentage. At the beginning of the season, I said if the Knicks competed for the 10th seed all year, I’d be very happy. Expectations have changed. I expect the Knicks to make the Play-In tournament at the very least. Make it happen, boys.

Midseason Awards

  • MVP – Joel Embiid
  • ROY – LaMelo Ball
  • DPOY – Rudy Gobert
  • 6th Man – Jordan Clarkson
  • MIP – Jerami Grant
  • COY – Quin Snyder

Will these predictions stay the same at the end of the season? My predictions for how the races will turn out.

  • MVP – LeBron James
  • ROY – LaMelo Ball
  • DPOY – Ben Simmons
  • 6th Man – Jordan Clarkson
  • MIP – Julius Randle
  • COY – Quin Snyder

Playoff Predictions

East

  1. Bucks
  2. Sixers
  3. Nets
  4. Heat
  5. Celtics
  6. Raptors
  7. Hornets
  8. Knicks
  9. Pacers
  10. Hawks

West

  1. Jazz
  2. Lakers
  3. Clippers
  4. Suns
  5. Nuggets
  6. Blazers
  7. Mavericks
  8. Warriors
  9. Spurs
  10. Pelicans

NBA Finals – Lakers over Nets*

*If and only if Anthony Davis is healthy

What are your predictions for the second half of the NBA season? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet me, @danny_giro.

2021 Oscars Discussion, Vol. 6: Making Sense Of The Golden Globes

Judas and the black messiah

The first stop on the road to the Oscars happened last Sunday night at the Golden Globes. Which actors and films picked up crucial victories on the road to the Oscars?

How Do The Golden Globes Affect The Oscars?

The Golden Globes are so unpredictable that they’ve actually become predictable. What do I mean? Viewers now expect the Globes to do something so against the grain every year that it’s no surprise when it happens. Sometimes, it’s a good surprise like rewarding Andra Day for Best Actress in The United States vs. Billie Holiday. Other times, a film like Music*, which was universally panned by critics, receives a nomination for Best Musical or Comedy.

*Kate Hudson, you were robbed of Oscars for your performances in Almost Famous and How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.

Before we can determine if the Golden Globes might affect the Oscars, let’s go over the winners in each category.

  • Best Motion Picture – Drama: Nomadland
  • Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy: Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
  • Best Actor – Drama: Chadwick Boseman, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
  • Best Actress – Drama: Andra Day, The United States vs. Billie Holiday 
  • Best Actor – Musical or Comedy: Sacha Baron Cohen, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
  • Best Actress – Musical or Comedy: Rosamund Pike, I Care a Lot 
  • Best Supporting Actor: Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah 
  • Best Supporting Actress: Jodie Foster, The Mauritanian
  • Best Director: Chloé Zhao, Nomadland
  • Best Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin, The Trial of the Chicago 7
  • Best Original Score: Jon Batiste, Trent Reznor, and Atticus Ross, Soul
  • Best Original Song: “Io sì (Seen)” by Niccolò Agliardi, Laura Pausini, and Diane Warren, The Life Ahead
  • Best Foreign Film: Minari
  • Best Animated Feature: Soul

Take a long look at this list. Some of the winners should start practicing their acceptance speeches for the Oscars. Others should just enjoy this moment right now because it will take a miracle to win in late April. Joe Reid of Vulture wrote a great piece about the Globes and if it translates to Oscar success. Since 1991, out of the 404 winners in the film categories, only 201 went on to win the Oscar, which is just under 50%.

Some of these categories are easier to predict than others. Based on Sunday night’s winners, a few of these races seem over.

My Stone Cold Locks To Win Oscars

  • Best Actor – Drama: Chadwick Boseman, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
  • Best Supporting Actor: Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah 
  • Best Animated Feature: Soul

If you put a gun to my head and asked for the three Golden Globe winners to win Oscars, I’d pick Boseman, Kaluuya, and Soul. Boseman is not going to lose, and rightfully so. Pixar rarely loses Best Animated Film at the Oscars (10 wins in 13 tries) so Soul is going to win. You could argue Kaluuya is more of a wildcard, but the public’s reception to Judas and the Black Messiah has been strong so I see him riding this wave to the Oscars.

Safe Bets To Win

  • Best Director: Chloé Zhao, Nomadland
  • Best Screenplay: Aaron Sorkin, The Trial of the Chicago 7
  • Best Original Score For Either Mank or Soul: Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross

A step below locks are the safe bets, which are the ones you would feel good about predicting. Zhao became the second woman ever to win the Golden Globe for Best Director and will most likely become the second female ever to win the directing Oscar. Nomadland has a lot of support, which bodes well for her chances in this category. At the Oscars, screenplay is divided into Best Adapted and Best Original. Sorkin will compete in Best Orginal Screenplay and will be a big favorite to win his second Oscar. Finally, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross are competing against themselves as either Soul or Mank will win for Best Score.

On The Right Track

  • Best Picture: Nomadland

Nomadland ascended to the top of the Best Picture race with a win in Best Motion Picture – Drama. However, it’s no guarantee it will win Best Picture. Since 2010, the Best Motion Picture – Drama winner has gone on to win Best Picture only three times. I’m interested to see if The Trial of the Chicago 7 and Minari can gain ground on Nomadland with wins at either the Critics’ Choice Awards or SAG Awards.

Your Guess Is As Good As Mine

  • Best Actress – Drama: Andra Day, The United States vs. Billie Holiday 
  • Best Actress – Musical or Comedy: Rosamund Pike, I Care a Lot 
  • Best Supporting Actress: Jodie Foster, The Mauritanian
  • Best Original Song: “Io sì (Seen)” by Niccolò Agliardi, Laura Pausini, and Diane Warren, The Life Ahead
  • Best Foreign Film: Minari

Out of these five winners, the easiest category to predict is Best International Film. Minari will not be eligible in this category at the Oscars. I just don’t know what film that will win. Then, there’s Best Original Song. Diane Warren has been nominated in this category 11 (!!!!) times and will most likely receive her 12th nomination for “Io sì (Seen).” Will she finally be rewarded with an Oscar? Maybe?

If you like upsets, the Golden Globes provided them in every female acting category, Day, Pike, and Foster were underdogs in their respective categories and all left Sunday night with some hardware. These wins throw a wrench in the plans of every Oscar prognosticator.

Forget the winner, predicting the nominees will be a tall task for both best actress and best supporting actress. In Best Actress, Frances McDormand, Viola Davis, and Carey Mulligan should receive the first three nominations. Before the Globes, Vanessa Kirby appeared to be on the fast track to a nomination. Now, I’m not so confident anymore. Between Day and Pike, I lean towards Day receiving the nomination, but Pike is well-respected in the film community. Could she also be nominated and take Kirby’s spot? My prediction: Kirby and Day receive nominations to round out the category.

Frankly, Best Supporting Actress is a clusterfuck. Foster’s win was way out of left field. This category is so competitive that I don’t think Foster will even be nominated for an Oscar. Only two women were nominated in this category at the Golden Globes, Critics’ Choice Awards, and SAG Awards. Those women are Olivia Colman and Glenn Close.

Let’s assume Colman and Close are two of the five nominees. That leaves five women for three spots: Foster, Amanda Seyfried, Youn Yuh-jung, Helena Zengel, and Maria Bakalova. This category depends on Bakalova. Will the Academy take her performance in Borat 2 seriously? Hopefully, will because Bakalova stole the show from Cohen, which was no easy task. If I had a vote, Bakalova would be my winner. So if Bakalova gets nominated, that means there are two more spots. Mank received the most nominations at both the Golden Globes and Critics’ Choice Awards so Seyfried will probably receive a nomination for the best performance of her career. That leaves Zengel, Youn Yuh-jung, and Foster for the fifth and final spot. Because of her nomination at both the Globes and SAGs, Zengel is my pick for the fifth and final nomination.

TL;DR: To determine if a winner at the Golden Globes will also win at the Oscars, flip a coin.

Previous Discussions:

Out of all the winners at the Golden Globes, who will win an Oscar? Leave your thoughts in the comments or tweet us, @unafraidshow.

2021 Golden Globes Predictions: Who Should Win And Who Will Win?

Chadwick Boseman Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

Believe it or not, awards season is set to begin Sunday night at the Golden Globes. Just like the Emmys, the Globes are going virtual. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler will host the ceremony for a fourth time, which means Tom Hanks won’t have to become a meme after a Ricky Gervais joke.

The Golden Globes are very divisive because of the mystery surrounding the Hollywood Foreign Press. A few days ago, the L.A. Times published a controversial report about the HFPA’s ethics and lack of diversity. Who are they? Your guess is as good as mine.

Despite the controversy, the Golden Globes is my favorite award show to watch. In a normal year, everyone gets drunks and celebrates. That’s my kind of party. I’m still waiting for my invite to an after-party…

The Globes are difficult to predict because of the secretive voting body. However, there are some trends that serve as a forecast for the Oscars and Emmys.

-Since 2010, the Best Motion Picture – Drama winner has gone on to win the Oscar for Best Picture three times while the Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy winner has won Best Picture twice. However, in that same timeframe, every Oscars’ Best Picture winner besides Parasite (ineligible; awful rule by the way) was nominated in either Best Motion Picture – Drama or Best Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical.

– At last year’s ceremony, the winners in Best Actor – Drama, Best Actress – Drama, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Supporting Actress won Oscars in the same categories.

– Win Best Director and you’re in the driver’s seat for the Oscar. Since 2013, five of the seven winners for Best Director at the Globes went on to win the same category at the Oscars. To all all the directors who weren’t nominated at the Globes, it’s almost impossible to win Best Director at the Oscars. Since 2000, the last director to the win the Oscar for Best Director without receiving a nomination at the Golden Globes was Roman Polanski in 2002 for The Pianist.

For television, it’s much harder to compare trends to a major awards show like the Emmys because of the submission timeline. The Oscars and Golden Globes (film) follow the calendar year. The Globes also follow the calendar year for television, but the Emmys are on their own schedule with a submission window that’s usually June to the last day in May of the next year. This is my biggest complaint. Make January to March awards season for both television and film.

– The Globes are famous for making a few big splashes per year, especially in the comedic categories. When I say splashes, I mean awarding winners from buzz-worthy shows you don’t think can win. Some of the decisions deserve praise while others leave you dumbfounded. In 2019, The Kominsky Method won Best Comedy and its star, Michael Douglas, won Best Actor. In 2017, Billy Bob Thornton won Best Actor in a Drama for Goliath. In 2016, Mozart in the Jungle won Best Comedy. This ceremony will feature Emily in Paris, which is up for Best Comedy. (I like Lily Collins. This isn’t a shot at you, Lily!)

Always remember this: When in doubt, chose star power. The Golden Globes loves to reward stars. I also love stars so I can’t say I blame them for this tactic!

Golden Globes – FILM

The Trial of the Chicago 7 / Netflix
The Trial of the Chicago 7 / Netflix

BEST MOTION PICTURE — DRAMA

  • The Trial of the Chicago 7
  • Nomadland
  • Mank
  • Promising Young Woman
  • The Father

Who Should Win: I truly don’t know. I also haven’t seen The Father.
Who Will Win: The Trial of the Chicago 7 

BEST MOTION PICTURE — MUSICAL or COMEDY

Who Should Win: Palm Springs
Who Will Win: 
Borat Subsequent Moviefilm

BEST ACTOR — DRAMA

  • Riz Ahmed, Sound of Metal 
  • Chadwick Boseman, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom 
  • Anthony Hopkins, The Father 
  • Gary Oldman, Mank 
  • Tahar Rahim, The Mauritanian 

Who Should And Will Win: Chadwick Boseman, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom 

BEST ACTRESS – DRAMA

  • Frances McDormand, Nomadland
  • Viola Davis, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom
  • Vanessa Kirby, Pieces of a Woman
  • Carey Mulligan, Promising Young Woman
  • Andra Day, The United States vs. Billie Holiday 

Who Should Win: Carey Mulligan, Promising Young Woman
Who Will Win: 
Frances McDormand, Nomadland

BEST ACTOR – COMEDY/MUSICAL

  • Sacha Baron Cohen, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
  • Andy Samberg, Palm Springs
  • Lin-Manuel Miranda, Hamilton
  • James Corden, The Prom
  • Dev Patel, The Personal History of David Copperfield

Who Should Win: Andy Samberg, Palm Springs
Who Will Win: 
Sacha Baron Cohen, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm

BEST ACTRESS – COMEDY/MUSICAL

  • Kate Hudson, Music 
  • Michelle Pfeiffer, French Exit
  • Maria Bakalova, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm
  • Anya Taylor-Joy, Emma
  • Rosamund Pike, I Care a Lot 

Who Should And Will Win: Maria Bakalova, Borat Subsequent Moviefilm

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR

  • Leslie Odom, Jr., One Night in Miami
  • Sacha Baron Cohen, The Trial of the Chicago
  • Bill Murray, On the Rocks
  • Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah
  • Jared Leto, The Little Things 

Who Should And Will Win: Daniel Kaluuya, Judas and the Black Messiah

Editor’s note on 2/28 at 6:30 PM: I originally had Leslie Odom Jr. winning in this category. However, I switched to Kaluuya because Odom Jr. will most likely be rewarded in Best Song and I don’t see him winning two in one night.

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS

  • Amanda Seyfried, Mank
  • Olivia Colman, The Father
  • Helena Zengel, News of the World 
  • Glenn Close, Hillbilly Elegy
  • Jodie Foster, The Mauritanian 

Who Should Win: Amanda Seyfried, Mank
Who Will Win: Glenn Close, Hillbilly Elegy (I selfishly want Close to win an Oscar. Sue me.)

BEST DIRECTOR

  • David Fincher, Mank
  • Chloe Zhao, Nomadland
  • Aaron Sorkin, The Trial of the Chicago
  • Emerald Fennell, Promising Young Woman
  • Regina King, One Night in Miami

Who Should And Will Win: Chloe Zhao, Nomadland

BEST SCREENPLAY

  • The Trial of the Chicago 7
  • Promising Young Woman
  • Mank
  • The Father
  • Nomadland

Who Should Win: Promising Young Woman
Who Will Win: 
The Trial of the Chicago 7

BEST ORIGINAL SONG

  • “Hear My Voice” by Celeste & Daniel Pemberton, The Trial of the Chicago 7
  • “Fight for You” by D’Mile, H.E.R., & Tiara Thomas, Judas and the Black Messiah
  • “Speak Now” by Sam Ashworth & Leslie Odom Jr., One Night in Miami
  • “Io sì (Seen)” by Niccolò Agliardi, Laura Pausini, & Diane Warren, The Life Ahead
  • “Tigress & Tweed” by Andra Day & Raphael Saadiq, The United States vs. Billie Holiday

Who Should Win: “Tigress & Tweed” by Andra Day & Raphael Saadiq, The United States vs. Billie Holiday
Who Will Win: 
“Speak Now” by Sam Ashworth & Leslie Odom Jr., One Night in Miami

BEST ORIGINAL SCORE

  • Ludwig Göransson, Tenet
  • Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross, Mank
  • Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, and Jon Batiste, Soul
  • Alexandre Desplat, The Midnight Sky
  • James Newton Howard, News of the World

Who Should Win: Ludwig Göransson, Tenet
Who Will Win: 
Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross, and Jon Batiste, Soul

BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM

  • Minari
  • La Llorona 
  • The Life Ahead
  • Another Round
  • Two of Us 

Who Should And Will Win: Minari

BEST ANIMATED FEATURE

  • Soul
  • Wolfwalkers
  • Over the Moon
  • Onward
  • The Croods: A New Age

Who Should And Will Win: Soul

Golden Globes – TELEVISION

Anya Taylor-Joy in The Queen's Gambit / Netflix
Anya Taylor-Joy in The Queen’s Gambit / Credit: Netflix

BEST TELEVISION SERIES — DRAMA

  • The Crown
  • The Mandalorian
  • Lovecraft Country
  • Ratched
  • Ozark

Who Should Win: The Mandalorian
Who Will Win: 
The Crown

BEST TELEVISION SERIES — MUSICAL or COMEDY

  • Schitt’s Creek
  • Ted Lasso
  • Emily in Paris
  • The Great
  • The Flight Attendant

Who Should Win: Ted Lasso
Who Will Win: 
Schitt’s Creek

BEST TELEVISION LIMITED SERIES OR TV MOVIE

Who Should Win: Normal People
Who Will Win: 
The Queen’s Gambit

LEAD ACTOR IN A TELEVISION DRAMA

  • Matthew Rhys, Perry Mason
  • Josh O’Connor, The Crown
  • Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul 
  • Jason Bateman, Ozark 
  • Al Pacino, Hunters

Who Should Win: Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul 
Who Will Win: 
Al Pacino, Hunters

LEAD ACTRESS IN A TELEVISION DRAMA

  • Olivia Colman, The Crown
  • Laura Linney, Ozark
  • Jodie Comer, Killing Eve
  • Emma Corrin, The Crown
  • Sarah Paulson, Ratched 

Who Should Win: Laura Linney, Ozark
Who Will Win: 
Emma Corrin, The Crown

LEAD ACTOR IN A TELEVISION COMEDY

  • Eugene Levy, Schitt’s Creek
  • Jason Sudeikis, Ted Lasso
  • Ramy Youssef, Ramy
  • Nicholas Hoult, The Great
  • Don Cheadle, Black Monday

Who Should Win: Ramy Youssef, Ramy
Who Will Win: 
Jason Sudeikis, Ted Lasso

LEAD ACTRESS IN A TELEVISION COMEDY

  • Catherine O’Hara, Schitt’s Creek
  • Elle Fanning, The Great
  • Kaley Cuoco, The Flight Attendant
  • Lily Collins, Emily in Paris 
  • Jane Levy, Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist

Who Should Win: Elle Fanning, The Great
Who Will Win: 
Kaley Cuoco, The Flight Attendant

LEAD ACTOR IN A MINISERIES OR TELEVISION FILM

  • Mark Ruffalo, I Know This Much Is True
  • Ethan Hawke, The Good Lord Bird
  • Hugh Grant, The Undoing
  • Bryan Cranston, Your Honor 
  • Jeff Daniels, The Comey Rule

Who Should Win: Bryan Cranston, Your Honor 
Who Will Win: 
Mark Ruffalo, I Know This Much Is True

LEAD ACTRESS IN A MINISERIES OR TELEVISION FILM

  • Anya Taylor-Joy, The Queen’s Gambit
  • Shira Haas, Unorthodox
  • Cate Blanchett, Mrs. America
  • Nicole Kidman, The Undoing
  • Daisy Edgar-Jones, Normal People

Who Should And Will Win: Anya Taylor-Joy, The Queen’s Gambit

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR IN A SERIES, MINISERIES, OR TELEVISION FILM

  • Dan Levy, Schitt’s Creek
  • Brendan Gleeson, The Comey Rule 
  • John Boyega, Small Axe
  • Donald Sutherland, The Undoing 
  • Jim Parsons, Hollywood

Who Should Win: John Boyega, Small Axe
Who Will Win: 
Dan Levy, Schitt’s Creek

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS IN A SERIES, MINISERIES, OR TELEVISION FILM

  • Gillian Anderson, The Crown
  • Julia Garner, Ozark
  • Annie Murphy, Schitt’s Creek
  • Helena Bonham Carter, The Crown
  • Cynthia Nixon, Ratched

Who Should Win: Julia Garner, Ozark
Who Will Win: 
Gillian Anderson, The Crown

Who do you believe should win at the Golden Globes? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet us, @unafraidshow.

This Is Us Season 5 Episode 9 Recap: Here In My Car

Chris Sullivan in This Is Us

To quote Gary Numan, “Here in my car.” Car rides and babies dominated the screen on last night’s episode of This Is Us.

This Is Us Season 5 Episode 9 Recap: “The Ride”

Kevin And Madison Battle The Paparazzi

The paparazzi sucks. I’m trying to think of something nice to say about the paparazzi, but I’m at a loss for words. If you have a family and need to provide for them, then I can (sort of) sympathize with those photographers. However, if you’re single and stalk celebrities for a living, please get a life.

Madison experienced the paparazzi firsthand on her way home from the hospital with Kevin and the twins. A paranoid Kevin pulled over and confronted a photographer when he noticed the paparazzi was on his tail. Before he could start a fight, Madison intervened and cut a deal with the photographer. She’ll inform the photographer when Kevin goes jogging if he stops following them home, to which he agrees. Apparently, Madison is a ride-or-die.

When they arrived home, Kevin passed out in the car and dreamt about Jack meeting his twins. In the dream, Jack held Franny and Nicky while promising Kevin that he’ll be a good father. The dream ends with Jack asking Kevin to go after what he wants in life. It turned out that Kevin wants to marry Madison, and upon waking up, he re-proposed with a hospital bracelet instead of a ring, stealing a page out of a middle school boyfriend’s playbook. Madison accepted so let the wedding conspiracies begin.

Kate’s Dilemma

Things didn’t go according to plan for Kate. After Toby finally met Hailey, it was time to go home and become a family of four. But first, they had to bring Ellie home, who looked upset as soon as she stepped foot in the car. An excited Kate started to plan future playdates between Ellie and Hailey. However, Ellie tearfully revealed that she does not want to have an open adoption anymore. Expect this to come up again before the season’s end.

The bad news kept on coming when Toby shared the news about losing his job. Toby was laid off but withheld the news so Kate wouldn’t worry. Surprisingly, Kate remained extremely positive and reassured Toby that they will figure out their finances later. Something tells me that more problems are on the horizon for Kate and Toby. Unfortunately, Toby’s depression will most likely remerge.

One Shot Of Whiskey, Please

This Is Us brought us back to the day Jack and Rebecca left the hospital with the Big Three. Both parents were extremely nervous and on-edge. Can you blame them? Taking care of one baby is a full-time job, but three babies? That’s like working a 23-hour day.

On their drive home, another car illegally cut off Jack, which led to Papa Pearson angrily confronting the driver at a gas station. To calm down, Jack slammed back a whiskey nip and asked Rebecca to drive home. Upon arrival, Rebecca and Jack elected to stay in the car while the Big Three fell asleep.

At this moment, Rebecca and Jack revealed their biggest fears about parenthood. Rebecca disclosed how her mother experienced a miscarriage and never recovered from the sadness. Jack confessed to the whiskey shot and how he never wants to be like his drunk father. As this power couple tends to do, they lifted each other’s spirits and reassured themselves that they will be good parents.

Beth Wants A Blizzard

It was time for Randall and Beth to bring the cutest member of the family, Annie, home from the hospital. On their way to Dairy Queen, Randall expressed interest in having a third child with Beth. Randall wants a son so his family tree will grow. I don’t have kids, but talking about the next kid while your wife recovers from pregnancy seems like a death wish.

In the Dairy Queen parking lot, Randall explained how he has no family tree. At the moment, Randall does not know about William and Laurel. However, Randall reassured Beth that he doesn’t care about having a boy anymore. Tess and Annie will help grow his family tree.

A Flash-Forward!

It’s time to play “Who is in the flash-forward at Kevin’s house?” At the beginning of last night’s episode, a medical intern left the hospital to avoid a lecture on labor. This intern was picked up by another young woman. We found out that the intern is pregnant.

At the end of the episode, we got the big reveal at Kevin’s house. The pregnant intern was Deja and the driver was Annie. The girls embraced Randall and Tess at Kevin’s house. Right before the episode ended, a white car pulled into the driveway. In other words, the next guest has arrived. Who is it?

Did you like last night’s episode? Leave your comments below or tweet us, @unafraidshow.

Julius Randle Deserves To Be An NBA All-Star

Julius Randle of the New York Knicks

I love the NBA, but I hate the All-Star Game. That might come off as dramatic so I’ll adjust. I don’t hate the All-Star Game, but it doesn’t excite me anymore. As a kid, I adored All-Star weekend especially Saturday night’s festivities. The idea of the game’s best players teaming mirroed an NBA Live game so I tuned in.

As I got older, the All-Star Game lost its luster. I don’t expect guys to guard each other for 48 minutes, but the lack of anything resembling defense made it unwatchable. I’m not a Grinch. I like alley-oops and deep threes, but I wouldn’t mind the occasional blocked shot or steal.

I may dislike the exhibition game, but being an All-Star matters. It’s fun to joke about the level of competiion during the game, but it’s still an honor to be named one of the 24 players chosen to represent the NBA.

This leads me to Julius Randle, one of the biggest surprises of the season. Randle’s all-star status is not up for debate. Randle deserves to be an all-star this season.

So far, Randle’s numbers are all career highs with averages of 23.2 points, 10.9 rebounds, and 5.5 assists. It’s Randle’s playmaking that’s significantly improved. Randle’s never sniffed four assists per game in his career. Now, he could realistically surpass six per game. That’s unfathomable for a guy that usually turned the ball over after a spin move.

Randle’s numbers are not being put to waste for a revitalized New York Knicks team. The Knicks currently sit in sixth place in the Eastern Conference with a record of 14-16. Sure, it’s below .500, but last season, the Knicks needed 50 games to record their 14th win.

Coming into the season, the majority of Knicks fans would struggle to say anything positive about Randle. Most, including myself, were counting down the days to trade or buy out the 26-year-old. I was completely wrong. Randle is making us all eat crow. After Monday’s win over the Hawks, Randle said, “Hard work is undefeated.” Could not have said it better myself, Julius.

Due to increased competition, Randle’s spot on the team is far from a guarantee. The five starters were announced tonight, which means seven spots are up for grabs.

Randle finished seventh in fan voting, which isn’t ideal, but not a huge blow. Randle tying for fifth in the frontcourt media vote strengthens his case to become a reserve.

For argument’s sake, let’s say the East takes five guards, five forwards, and two wild cards (guard or forward). Here are the players that are leading the pack and will make the team.

Starters: G Kyrie Irving, G Bradley Beal, F Giannis Antetokounmpo, F Kevin Durant, F Joel Embiid

Next Set of Locks: G James Harden, G Jaylen Brown, F Jayson Tatum

With four spots remaining, there’s room for one guard, one forward, and two wild cards. I’d expect the reserves to come from this pool of players.

  • F Julius Randle
  • F Khris Middleton
  • F Domantas Sabonis
  • G Trae Young
  • G Zach LaVine
  • F Bam Adebayo
  • F Jerami Grant
  • F Jimmy Butler
  • F Gordon Hayward
  • F Tobias Harris
  • F Ben Simmons

Right off the bat, I’m giving one spot to Sabonis, who’s averaging 21.5 points, 11.6 rebounds, and 5.7 assists. Sabonis is the best player on a Pacers team that’s fourth in the Eastern Conference. He’s making the team.

At least one more guard is making the team so pick either LaVine or Young. With two spots remaining, there are few ways this could go. Simmons, Harris, and Middleton could be rewarded for being second-level stars on top teams. (In the Eastern Conference, Sixers are first and the Bucks are third.) Will they reward Bam, Grant, or Hayward for making sizable jumps in their numbers from a season ago?

Full disclosure, I’m a Knicks fan so I’m biased. However, besides numbers and the team’s success, the All-Star game is about narratives. With Randle at the helm, the Knicks went from a projected lottery team to sixth in the East. Randle is the reason why the Knicks are one of the best turnaround stories in the NBA.

The Knicks are back right now, all thanks to their future All-Star, Julius Randle.

Do you like Tom Brady? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tweet us, @unafraidshow.