Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Drinking The Training Camp Kool-Aid

Training camp is for dreamers- or salesmen, depending on your perspective. This time of year, the bullshit flies fast and furious as delusional managers and players pretend their teams are much better than they actually are. As Brent Barry so aptly puts it, 'everyone's talking about rose petals and rainbows.'

But the fans recognize hyperbole when they see it.

Like when Mike D'Antoni tells the media that Stephon Marbury is one of the best players in the league. C'mon. Even at his absolute apex, Marbury was barely an All-Star, much less an elite player. And his teams always sucked so that should tell you something.

Hey, Mike- here's your MVP humping what appears to be some kind of flotation device. Guess the interns were busy.

Want some more bullshit? How 'bout Atlanta's Mike Bibby referring to teammate Speedy Claxton as 'one of the best guards in the NBA'? I'm speechless.

Or Jermaine O'Neal predicting Toronto will finish with the league's best record? Yeah, that'll happen.

Or Andrew Bogut singing the praises of Luke Ridnour? Really? The same Luke Ridnour who couldn't beat out Earl Watson for minutes on the Sonics? THAT Luke Ridnour?

Or Yao Ming saying he's 100% healthy? Reaaaalllly? As a fantasy owner of his two years in a row, I'm convinced that Yao was born injured.

Or Smush Parker (yes, Smush Parker!) saying that the Nuggets will be mainly focusing on defense this year? I don't know what's more ridiculous about that assertion- that he'll actually make the team or that Denver will hold teams under 200 without Camby in there.

But nothing rings more false than Baron Davis gushing over his great discussion about team chemistry with...wait for it...Tim Thomas and Ricky Davis.

Team chemistry. With Tim Thomas and Ricky Davis! That's like discussing Charles Darwin with Billy Graham.

But this is Spring. Nobody's lost 10 in a row yet. No fans are booing yet. No players in contract years are stuck in the skipper's doghouse yet. So for the time being, love is in the air and everyone's giddy with unrealistic expectations.

Leave it to hard-ass Greg Popozitz to put things in perspective.

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