Open Floor: SI's NBA Show-logo

Open Floor: SI's NBA Show

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Hosted by Ben Golliver and Michael Pina, SI’s Open Floor podcast brings you breakdowns of the biggest news, moves and more from around the NBA.

Hosted by Ben Golliver and Michael Pina, SI’s Open Floor podcast brings you breakdowns of the biggest news, moves and more from around the NBA.


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Hosted by Ben Golliver and Michael Pina, SI’s Open Floor podcast brings you breakdowns of the biggest news, moves and more from around the NBA.




The NBA responds to George Floyd's death

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina recount the weekend of nationwide protests that followed George Floyd's death in police custody in Minneapolis. They address what things are like in their communities right now and how long these protests might continue. From there, Ben and Michael survey responses from throughout the NBA community -- Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Doc Rivers, Dwane Casey, Stephen Jackson, Jaylen Brown, Malcolm Brogdon -- and try to pinpoint why the reaction to Floyd's...


Playoff format overload, scoring champ title winners

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open by running through this week's developments regarding the potential format of the 2019-20 resumed NBA season. Why is Adam Silver even bothering with World Cup group stage and expanded playoff proposals? What advice would Ben and Michael offer to the commissioner? Did Damian Lillard have a point when he threatened to sit out if the Blazers can't play meaningful games? Should the NBA cater its proposal to the intense fan interest in Zion Williamson? From...


Jack McCallum on Michael Jordan and the 1992 Dream Team

Ben Golliver is joined by legendary basketball writer Jack McCallum to discuss his new podcast project, "The Dream Team Tapes." Which Michael Jordan story does Jack wish he could have told on "The Last Dance"? How did Jack prepare to cover USA Basketball's 1992 team and how did he forge relationships with Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, and Charles Barkley? What was Christian Laettner's life like in Barcelona? Which player on that team has become the most underrated by history? Who should...


The NBA's return plans: the good, bad and ugly

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina dig through the NBA's first official steps towards a resumption of the 2019-20 season. Do they like Disney World as a host? How many teams should be invited? How should the playoffs be formatted and seeded? If they were players, would they participate? As reporters, would they attend and cover the events in person? Will there be an asterisk? From there, they shift gears to take questions from the Open Floor Globe. Which GMs could make a name for themselves this...


Closing thoughts on The Last Dance, Michael Jordan, the Pacers and the Jazz

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina conclude their coverage of "The Last Dance" by taking questions from the Open Floor Globe. Should this project be considered a documentary? How should Jordan be viewed as a player and leader? What was the project missing? What do Jordan's narrative successes tell us about the Warriors dynasty? What's the signature MJ game? Was the "Flu Game" story believable? What legacy do Reggie Miller's Pacers leave? Did John Stockton and Karl Malone get shortchanged? Learn...


Michael Jordan didn't want the Bulls dynasty to end

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina discuss the key revelation of the final two episodes of "The Last Dance": That Michael Jordan wanted to run things back with the Chicago Bulls during the 1998-99 season on one-year contracts. Does Jordan's vision of how that would work make sense? What, exactly, was Jerry Krause's take? How about Phil Jackson? Scottie Pippen? Owner Jerry Reinsdorf? If the Bulls had returned with Jordan and Pippen in a lockout year, could they have reached the 1999 NBA Finals and...


Being Michael Jordan's teammate, more NBA quitters

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina begin their latest recap of "The Last Dance" by asking how they would survive as Michael Jordan's teammate. Would Ben take the bullying without responding? Would Michael walk off the job? Then, they ponder whether Steve Kerr truly believes getting punched was the best thing that happened to his relationship with Jordan, break down Gary Payton's memorable cameo and show love to B.J. Armstrong. After making their predictions for the series' final two episodes,...


Scottie Pippen's sit down & the biggest quitters in NBA history

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina look back at Scottie Pippen's decision to sit out the closing seconds of a 1994 playoff game against the New York Knicks. Was Pippen guilty of a cardinal sporting sin? What context helps explain his sit down? Could the same situation play out in today's NBA? From there, Ben and Michael pivot to a wider discussion of the NBA's biggest quitters? Does changing teams in free agency make you a quitter? What about retiring early? Were Michael Jordan, LeBron James,...


Michael Jordan comes up short on politics & gambling, top under-25 duos

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina break down the latest episodes of "The Last Dance" by dissecting Michael Jordan's shaky defenses of his gambling habit and lack of interest in politics. Should the documentary have approached the issue of gambling addiction with more nuance? Did Jordan have an obligation to embrace his potential as an activist? Is Jordan truly apolitical or is he worried that people won't like his politics? From there, Michael shares some of his favorite scenes from the...


Michael Jordan's most tortured opponents, NBA shutdown fall-offs and bounce-backs

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open by arguing about an age-old question: Who was Michael Jordan's most tortured opponent? Charles Barkley or Patrick Ewing? From there, they discuss the impact that the coronavirus shutdown could have on aging players. Which veterans might enter a different stage of their careers by the time basketball is back? Kyle Lowry? Chris Paul? PJ Tucker? Dwight Howard? On the flip side, which players are poised for bounce-back seasons after the extra time off? Ben and...


Bad Boys revisited, the real Dennis Rodman, 2020 expansion draft

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina review episodes 3 and 4 of "The Last Dance" by digging into the rivalry between the Bulls and Pistons. Did Isiah Thomas deserve Michael Jordan's hate? Are the Bad Boys overrated, underrated or properly rated? Could Dennis Rodman's late-blooming career arc have happened in the modern NBA? Was his Las Vegas trip really indicative of who he was as a Bulls player? From there, they shift gears to conduct a 2020 expansion draft. What would Ben and Michael name their...


The NBA's Most Hated, basketball's chemistry majors

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina use Michael Jordan's intense hatred of Isiah Thomas and the Detroit Pistons as a jumping off point to discuss the most reviled people in NBA history. Which former players were universally despised? Are owners easier to hate than players? Which attributes -- laziness, selfishness, lack of integrity -- wind up drawing the most ire? And which players did Ben and Michael personally hate the most? From there, they shift gears to Michael's recent feature on chemistry...


First impressions of Michael Jordan's "Last Dance," NBA name games

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina deliver their first impressions of the first two episodes of "The Last Dance," the 10-part documentary about Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls. Was Jerry Krause portrayed fairly? Should Scottie Pippen have gone nuclear? Was 1985 Michael Jordan the coolest person in world history? How would young MJ have reacted to The Process? From there, they shift gears to take questions from the Open Floor Globe. Which NBA players would have had better careers if they had cooler...


Last Dance hype, NBA numerology, Basketball stars as track athletes

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open with a quick rundown of the excitement around "The Last Dance," the Michael Jordan documentary, but decide to save their full commentary until Friday to avoid early spoilers. From there, they recap NBA Commissioner Adam Silver's recent press conference and pivot to questions from the Open Floor Globe. Why are certain numbers like 32 so popular in basketball? Which NBA players would make the best track and field athletes? Would Zion Williamson be a good...


Previewing ESPN's "The Last Dance" documentary about Michael Jordan's Bulls

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina offer an extended preview of "The Last Dance," ESPN's 10-part documentary about Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls. Ben teases some memorable scenes, lays out Jordan's participation in the project, and describes how the series came together. From there, they shift to a recent SB Nation feature on the most memorable "Title-less" teams in NBA history and Michael recaps some of the saddest title defenses. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit...


Rudy Gobert fake trades, Our biggest draft misses, NBA inspirations

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina dig deep into the strained relationship between Utah Jazz stars Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell. They lay out the importance of both players to the franchise and explore Gobert trade scenarios. Which teams should target Gobert? How should the Jazz rework themselves around Mitchell? Then, Michael lays out his three favorite fake trades. From there, Ben and Michael answer two questions from the Open Floor Globe. What are their favorite Draft hits and misses over...


The most overrated NBA players, coaches, front offices & owners

In response to a question from the Open Floor Globe, Ben Golliver and Michael Pina sift through nominees for the NBA's most overrated figures. They debate the likes of Mike D'Antoni, Reggie Miller, Chris Paul and the "Big 3" Celtics and discuss what exactly it means for someone to be "overrated" in the NBA context. Then, Ben and Michael make their own lists of current players, coaches, owners and front offices. Along the way, they dissect Kyrie Irving, Joel Embiid, Kyle Kuzma, Kemba Walker,...


Best and Worst HORSE players, 1990s cult heroes, no-ring-yet Dream Team

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open by diving deep into the NBA's proposal to launch a HORSE tournament during quarantine. Is the NBA desperate? Are we desperate enough to watch? Which players make the dream field and which players would be absolutely horrible? From there, Ben and Michael take questions from the Open Floor Globe. Which cult heroes of the 1990s are worth re-watching on YouTube? Should the NBA change its MVP voting procedure to adopt daily updates like Australian Rules...


Best games of 2019-20, coronavirus mid-life crises, past greats in modern NBA

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open with Michael's story on a Palo Alto company's ranking of the most memorable games of the 2019-20 season. What does the company's algorithm prioritize? Does it have any blind spots? And what were Ben and Michael's favorite games of the season? From there, they dive into questions from the Open Floor Globe. Will the coronavirus trigger mid-life crises and retirements from coaches and players? Should non-NBA basketball stars be invited to All-Star Weekend in...


Hakeem's what-if, MJ's 55, the wall of sound

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina dive into another batch of questions from the Open Floor Globe, starting with an incredible "What if?" involving the Houston Rockets and a possible 1984 trade that could have landed Clyde Drexler and Michael Jordan alongside Hakeem Olajuwon. Would that Big 3 have worked? How many titles would Jordan and Olajuwon have won as teammates? From there, Ben and Michael discuss re-watching Jordan's 55-point explosion at Madison Square Garden on its 25th anniversary. How...