Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Drinking The Training Camp Kool-Aid

Every coach is happy. Every player is optimistic. Nobody's been benched or fired yet. NBA training camp is upon us and, as usual, people are running their mouths with some ridiculous bullshit. To wit...

*Stephen Curry is proclaiming himself the early favorite for Rookie Of The Year, despite the fact that he plays the same position as Monta Ellis AND that he just shot 30% against marginal talent in Summer League. Somehow I don't think he'll finish ahead of Blake Griffin. Just a hunch.

*Curry's future tormentor, the blowhard drunkard known as Don Nelson, went on record this week as saying that Stephen Jackson's trade demands "won't be a distraction" for the upcoming season. Yeah, right. When in the history of sports has a public trade demand not been a distraction? Have another mai-tai, boozeface.

Pictured: drunk-ass Don Nelson, destroyer of rookies

*George Karl's ego-tripping again, this time bragging that the Nugs are "the team to beat in the West" and adding that "other teams made moves to match us." Hilarious. Karl must be assuming that losing Linas Kleiza, his most consistent bench scorer, and Dahntay Jones, his best perimeter defender, somehow won't negatively impact the team. He probably also thinks that Nene and KMart will stay healthy again. Idiot. Yeah, the Lakers added Artest 'cause they were afraid of you.

*Jerry Colangelo thinks Toronto will win 50 games. With Andrea Bargnani playing center. Yeah. To recap: last year's team gave up almost 102 ppg and let opponents shoot 46% against them. Their big offseason addition was slow-footed Hedo Turkoglu, who's a fine offensive player but can't stay in front of most small forwards, a flaw that's recently been masked by the presence of Dwight Howard (and Tim Duncan before him). They could give up 110 a night.

*Hornets GM Jeff "Golden" Bowers crows about new acquisition Emeka Okafor, calling him a "threat in the low post." Watch some basketball every now and then, dude. Meka's absolutely clueless on offense. He has no post game whatsoever.

*The Lakers are considering starting a lineup of Kobe, Artest, Odom, Gasol and Bynum (sending incumbent Derek Fisher to the pine). Riiiight. Who from that group is going to guard the other team's PG? And you're telling me Gasol has the footspeed to stay in front of PFs on the perimeter? No way this idea works. Horsepucky.

NOTE: Here's last year's version of Training Camp Kool-Aid, featuring D'Antoni describing Shitbury as "one of the best players in the league."

Monday, September 21, 2009

One Pickup Game For All The Marbles

Hypothetical situation here. Let's just say that you (the well-informed fan) and I were coaches who were picking a starting five for one pickup game that would determine which of us survived. Winning coach lives, loser dies. No salary implications or long-term injury concerns. No drafting by position. Street ball- call your own fouls, no FTs, no flops.

One game for the right to keep breathing air.

I'd choose Kobe Bryant first (it's my blog so I get first pick but you get the second two, alternating after that). You would probably choose LeBron James and Dwight Howard. Am I right? Here's how the rest of the top-10 might shake out:

My five- (1) Kobe, (4) Tim Duncan, (6) Chris Paul, (8) Kevin Durant, (10) Shaq

'Your' five- (2) LeBron, (3) Dwight Howard, (5) Dwyane Wade, (7) Deron Williams, (9) Chris Bosh

Nash and Nowitzki are the obvious omissions here. Both are weak sauce on D so I wouldn't take 'em. But you might. And my team would then beat your team.

Ordinarily KG would be chosen for sure but lingering doubts about his health held him back. Chauncey Billups barely missed the cut. And it's worth noting that I drafted Shaq simply to contend with Howard. And like I said, no FTs. Heh heh.

Who'd win? Would you choose differently?

Pictured: #1 overall

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Loose Balls- Thursday

*So the Heat brass are taking a pay cut, eh? I'd be interested in checking them books. I seriously doubt Riley Coyote is looking at the same kind of financial pimpslap as Eric Spoelstra. How hard must it be to work for Riley? Dude's bananas. In a league of egotistical nutjobs, Riles is right up there with, well...Michael Jordan.

*Speaking of MJ, I don't think he overstepped any boundaries by spitting some venom during his HOF speech/roast (thanks to Adande for an excellent analysis). As a player, Jordan was one of the biggest shit-talkers in history. There's nothing unusual about Mike being an asshole. What made that speech so uncomfortable and awkward was that once he started trashing people, everyone in that entire room's buttholes collectively puckered up, each person terrified that Mean Mike was gonna start in on them next. In fact, it felt a bit like this.

*Larry Legend's getting ripped in Indiana, even as he assembles the Aryan Superteam that racist Pacer fans have been clamoring for since Ron Ron starting punching people in Detroit. Maybe trading Danny Granger for David Lee would satisfy the locals.

Pictured: Bird's profile shot from Men Who Look Like Old Lesbians

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Loose Balls- Wednesday

*I went digging around for reactions to AI signing with Memphis. Actually, that's a lie. What I really did was Google 'fuck Allen Iverson' to see who else was peeved that Heisley would sabotage the careers of his promising young players for one season of slightly above-average ticket sales. Weak sauce. First Z-Bo, now this. Does Heisley even watch basketball? Did he see the numbers Conley put up for March and April? Is he aware that Mayo almost won ROY? The folks at Spurstalk express my feelings on the subject perfectly.

UPDATE: I wonder how many fans are gonna fall for this goat rodeo?

*Rubio bailing on Minny for Barcelona doesn't surprise me at all. I've been to both and there's no comparison.

*The league loses Bruce Bowen and Matt Harpring in the same month? Say it ain't so. Who's going to fill that massive void of cheap shots, elbows and flops now that these 'hard nosed' (i.e. dirty) players have called it quits? It's too much to ask of Dahntay Jones. He's just one man.

*And last, but certainly not least, a gigantic FUCK YOU (as usual) to King Douche David Stern for once again overstepping his boundaries by attempting to clamp down on NBA tweeting. First the dress code, now this. The last time I checked, a boss couldn't say shit about what his employees did when they weren't at work.

*Is rehab turning convicted tweeter Michael Beasley into DeShawn Stevenson? Who's gonna be the first to bust out the Urkel Dance?