It’s that magical time of year when the NBA Playoffs begin. But just in case you want to watch like TV…TV here are some other #SetTheVCR suggestions.
Monday, April 11
Vince’s Places: Season 1 (Anytime / ESPN+)
Vince Carter hosts Vince’s Places, a basketball-centric expansion of the Peyton’s Places franchise, exclusively on ESPN+, where he explores why the sport of basketball continues to captivate fans around the world. Includes Appearances from Dr. J, Jerry West, Patrick Ewing, Dominique Wilkins, Dikembe Mutombo, Dirk Nowitzki, Ray Allen, Mark Cuban, and more.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: MAN IN THE ARENA: TOM BRADY (ANYTIME / DISNEY+ & HULU)
The series features Brady and other notable figures deconstructing the milestones of his legendary NFL career, mining the psychological and emotional terrain of each victory and defeat.
Tom Brady’s Last Dance Man in the Arena has jumped from ESPN+ to Hulu and Disney+. (You gotta nut up and change the parental settings on Disney. Lotta cussing but that’s what it takes to win!) Episode 7 is spectacular. I watched it 3 times. On September 28 in the Wall Street Journal Tom Brady wisely said: “You think people care what you think and then you care less what people think, and then you realize no one cared, anyway.” Pretty much. The title of this ESPN+ show comes from the stirring Theodore Roosevelt speech: “It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself in a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.” And that right there…that’s Tom Brady. The 10th and final episode coming to ESPN+ later this month.
Tuesday, April 12
Basketball Africa League: Nile Conference (5 p.m. / TSN & NBA TV)
After the first part of Season in Dakar, join us in Cairo from April 9th to April 19th for the Nile Conference. Discover the four BAL (Basketball Africa League) teams that will access the finals between Zamalek, Cape Town Tigers, Cobra Sport, Espoir Fukash, Petro de Luanda and Forces Armées Police. Go Zamalek!!
SAMMY SUGGESTION: NBA PLAY-IN TOURNAMENT (7 P.M. / TNT)
The top six teams in each conference are guaranteed a first-round playoff series and the seeding matchups are the same as always. The Play-In Tournament determines the No. 7 and No. 8 seeds. Teams finishing seventh through 10th in each conference go into the Play-In Tournament pool of contestants. If you finished 11th through 15th, enjoy the lottery. Four other teams will be joining you shortly.
Today the stupid NBA Play-In Tournament begins; it’s so dumb. As you can clearly pick up I’m not a fan of this post-season format which determines the final 2 playoff teams in the East and West for the upcoming NBA Playoffs which begin on April 16. Tonight’s double header on TNT with Cavs vs Nets then Clippers at T-Wolves; will establish the seventh seeds. The rest of the corny Play-In games will air on ESPN and TNT over the next couple of days. Details are below.
Wednesday, April 13
Our Great National Parks: Docuseries (Anytime / Netflix)
An epic five-part series narrated by Barack Obama that invites viewers to celebrate and discover the power of our planet’s greatest national parks and wild spaces.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: CITY OF ANGELS: CITY OF DEATH (ANYTIME / DISNEY+ CANADA)
Throughout the 1970s and ’80s, more than 20 serial killers stalked the streets of Los Angeles simultaneously and within miles of each other, murdering and terrorizing citizens.
6 episode docuseries City of Angels: City of Death documents the chilling 70s-80s era of rampant serial killers in Los Angeles. Originally aired on Hulu in November 24, 2021 it’s been added to Disney+ Canada as more Hulu content surfaces on the Canadian streamer. It covers the Freeway Killer, Hillside Strangler, Sunset Strip Killer and many more. (Many more?? How many serial killers were operating in LA??)
Thursday, April 14
Minx: Season 1: Episodes 9-10 *Season Finale* (Anytime / HBO Max & Crave)
Minx is a raunchy and witty new comedy series set in the wild and glamorous backdrop of 1970s Los Angeles. A well-meaning yet overly judgmental feminist writer joins forces with a low-rent publisher to create the first erotic magazine for women.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: KILLING IT: SEASON 1 (ANYTIME / PEACOCK)
From Brooklyn Nine-Nine co-creator Dan Goorad Killing It is a comedy about class, capitalism and one man’s quest to achieve the American dream. And also about hunting really big snakes.
Welcome to Whacking Day on Peacock. The New Orleans set comedy features a security guard played by Craig Robinson who turns to big snake hunting in order to achieve his American dream. Craig Robinson is a solid bet; can’t go wrong with his comedy. You can achieve your American dream by watching all 10 episodes since they’ll all be added to the streamer today.
Friday, April 15
Halloween Kills (Anytime / Crave)
Evil dies tonight. Survivors of Michael Myers’ first rampage decide to take matters into their own hands, forming a vigilante mob that sets out to hunt Michael down, once and for all.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: Bill Maher: #Adulting (10 P.M. / HBO & CRAVE )
Filmed at Miami’s Fillmore Theater, Bill Maher’s latest stand-up special sees the comedian, host, and satirist take the stage for a scathing hour of his signature commentary on the latest hot-button issues. Maher brings his no-holds-barred perspective to cancel culture, quarantine, Q-Anon… and everything in-between.
Bill Maher’s first HBO comedy special dates back to 1989; #Adulting will mark Maher’s 12th special with HBO. He’s killing it! I’m not a huge fan of his comedy specials but I do watch em. Thing is I’ve often been critical of Jay Leno for not doing this. Maher remains committed to the medium; to comedy. And at his age, 66, he’s still trucking which is one of the perks of comedy; you can do this forever you don’t hafta retire. (If anything he’s working even harder these days having released a podcast Club Random, he’s still hosting his popular Friday night show and today is his 12th comedy special. It’s been a wild run.)
Saturday, April 16
NBA Playoffs: Day 1 Starting with Utah at Dallas (1 p.m. / ESPN)
The first round of the NBA playoffs will start on April 16, the day after the stupid NBA Play-In Tournament ends. All playoff series are best of seven and follow a 2-2-1-1-1 format where the higher seed has home court first. 4 games today: Jazz vs Mavs, West #7 vs Griz, Raps vs Sixers and finally Nuggets vs Warriors.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: OUTER RANGE: SEASON 1 (ANYTIME / PRIME VIDEO)
The first season of the Prime original series executive produced by Brad Pitt will consist of eight episodes, with two episodes premiering every week as “Royal fights to protect his family; through his eyes, we begin to see how time contains secrets held in the past and unsettling mysteries foreshadowed.”
Oh Snap! Josh Brolin plays Royal Abbott “a rancher fighting for his land and family, who discovers an unfathomable supernatural mystery at the edge of Wyoming’s wilderness.” Lots of creepy atmosphere; a murder or two in the trailer. Interesting. So shall we explore the Outer Range?
Sunday, April 17
The Circus: Inside The Greatest Political Show On Earth: Season 7 Episode 5 (8 p.m. / Showtime & Crave)
THE CIRCUS returns for a 7th season. This documentary series pulls back the curtain on the Trump era of presidential politics, revealing the stories behind the headlines.
SAMMY SUGGESTION: NBA PLAYOFFS: DAY 2 (TBD / TBD)
“People will still refer to the playoffs as the postseason, but the Play-In Tournament is simply the postseason and not the playffs.” The times and TV channels are still TBD however as you can see below the matchups are setup.
It’s the NBA Playoffs! The 82 game season has concluded; the Lakers have mercifully been eliminated. And the stupid Play-In Tournament has wrapped up. And now the real NBA post-season can start.
Sammy Younan is the affable host of My Summer Lair: think NPR’s Fresh Air meets Kevin Smith: interviews & impressions on Pop Culture.