Archive for the 'NBA' Category

09
Jun
08

Oh, Paul Pierce Christ

PPMy father is a wise man. (That’s not him in the Dickerson jersey.)

He knows things.

About 8 years ago, at the peak of his soothsaying, he predicted the downfall of the National Basketball Association.

Sadly, although several of our favorite sites would try to convince you otherwise, he was right.

I could care less that the players wear dem danggone long shorts now. Or that they sport tattoos. Or shoot people at strip clubs.

The problem is that it’s no longer about the game play, it’s about everything else.

It’s about Paul Pierce’s fake? injury.

It’s about whether Passing Kobe, Shooting Kobe or Sexually-Assualting Kobe will show up.

It’s, somehow, about Bill Russell teaching KG Celtic history.

The problem is that the League cannot accept that it’s no longer the late 80s or early 90s. I mean, Seriously?

And all this hype and desire to return to the “good ol’ days”, in turn, leads to over-aggressive officiating (see the first two games of the Finals), over-paid rookies in hopes of The Next MJ and announcing exchanges that go something like this:

Mike Breen: Paul Pierce is one of the premiere scorers in this league today.

Jeff Van Gundy: Paul Pierce is one of the best Celtics ever to put on a uniform!

Mark Jackson: Paul Pierce is as good as Larry Bird!

Michelle Tafoya: God, I wish Paul Pierce would just impregnated me already!

All joking aside, what has the NBA come to when Paul Pierce is compared to Larry Bird (yes, the comparison was actually made)? I don’t think I need to tell you that, as far as playmaking skills go, Pierce and Bird are not even in the same Garden.

The bottom line is that it’s no longer 1988. Magic and Bird aren’t going at each other (except via commercial in baggy tank tops). And the NBA we grew up with is no more. (sigh)

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29
Apr
08

The NBA…and its hypocrisy

About the 16-second mark…KG, getting frustrated that the Celtics are overrated.

Is this no longer a suspension?

Can Amare appeal the Suns’ exit last year?

Oh yea, and Commissioner David Stern was at the game. So I doubt he missed it.

26
Mar
08

Birds of a feather

Bird/ReggieNot that it’s a rule or anything, but typically you won’t see much NBA coverage around these parts.

Yours truly should probably be the focus of some pre-pubescent sports/sociology experiment, but somewhere between late summer nights cursing Karl Malone and highlowlights of Ricky Davis purposefully missing a bunny to ensure a triple-double, interest was lost.

A former Indiana Pacers fan, I’ve felt abandoned by the pro game for years. I don’t give two shits if Joakim Noah fits in well in Chicago. Shaq traded to the Suns? Wake me when the playoffs start (and the Suns are ousted in round 2nd).

One recurring NBA issue has captured my attention of late though – the ire that Isaiah Thomas has drawn.

It’s not that I disagree with the criticism Thomas receives, he seems most certainly to be a sub-par coach and an even worse head of basketball operations. It’s just that I’ve come accustomed to such travesty over the past 5 years – but in my own backyard.

Here in the heartland, we have Indiana’s own Larry Bird to do a much more spectacular job of running the hometown franchise into the ground.

In the honeymoon period, when all Hoosiers were googley-eyed just to see Larry Legend back in the public eye, he had a pretty successful run as head coach of the team. Bird was even named Clipboard Holder of the Year at the end of the 1998 season.

But the buttery kernels soon popped. When he was named GM in 2003, Larry took over a team that was in its prime. Fresh off an NBA Finals appearance in 2000 and a couple of Eastern Conference runner-ups, the team took a nosedive. And despite all the struggles, throughout it all, one turtle-necked man keeps lurking in the empty seats of Conseco Fieldhouse.

A recap of the last half-decade of disaster:

2003: After signing Jermaine O’Neal to an NBA-maximum contract (great idea, in retrospect), the Pacers trade All-Star center Brad Miller to Sacramento for Scot Pollard – who hides any ability under a ridiculously flamboyant exterior and a name spelled with just one “t”.

2004-05: Small forward Al Harrington, tired of observing scenery in central Indiana, demands to start or be traded. Bird makes the wise (and community-oriented) decision to trade Harrington to Golden State for upstanding citizen Stephen Jackson. Note: This season also contained somewhat of a skirmish this season in Detroit. Perhaps Larry knew what a great right hook Jackson had. Also of note, after the brawl, the team plummeted out of contention.

Continue reading ‘Birds of a feather’

09
Aug
07

You’re dead to me Reg

Reggie vs. CelticsWhen I first read the blurb, it didn’t sink in:

Celtics talking to retired Miller”

A Miller considering an NBA comeback?

Blank.

Then I clicked on the story.

You’ve got to be kidding me.

As a Pacers fan, I was almost floored to see that Reggie was the Miller considering lacing up the sneaks again and hitting the hardwood.

I’m not sure it could be called a rivalry (at least a first-round playoff rivalry), but the dislike Pacers’ fans feel toward the Celtics is quite strong. Boston is probably second on the list of “teams Indiana fans hate” behind the Knicks.

But I guess it’s not really that rare anymore to see your favorite player in a different jersey. Karl Malone (if he has any fans) in a Lakers jersey. Shaq in a Lakers jersey, then a Heat jersey. KG in a Celtics jersey. It just looks so desperate.

Honestly, the Celtics aren’t going to win the NBA Finals this year. They probably won’t even get there. And now, I hope they miss the playoffs.

27
Jul
07

$5K for Bosworth? I’m in

Lance wins...againHave you ever wondered how lucrative a career in public speaking could be?

No? Me neither.

But I never realized the amount of money athletes can make giving motivational speeches (sometimes after their prime, sometimes while they’re still active).

Anyway, Direct Sportslink will hook you up with your favorite athlete for a nominal fee. Note: “nominal” = holy shit I’ve never seen that much money.

Here’s a list of some of the celebs DS can hook you up with, and what you get for your money.*

*fabricated by yours truly

1. In the highest tier: There is only one athlete, and I’m sure you’ve guessed which douc…I mean celebrity garnishes the highest wages.

Yep, it’s Lance. For “above $100,000” he will give you the most inspirational speech of your life. Also included, Lance will show you how to redirect steroid implications into lawsuits against the French media. In addition, you will also receive political advice and also a free naked photo of yourself and Lance riding tandem. Matthew McConaughey, please stop calling.

2. Second tier — $75,000-$100,000: There are several athletes in this category, including George Foreman, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Phil Jackson, Joe Montana and Gary Player (honestly?). But most valuable in this category is Tom Brady. For only about four times your yearly salary, the three-time Super Bowl champion will teach you to impregnate has-been actresses, completely get out of caring for the child, and then land a super model. And then blow it. Seems like he could charge more.

3. Third tier — $50,000-$75,000: The first member of this category is Hank Aaron. Honestly, he’s probably worth a lot more, and one of the only athletes I would pay to hear speak. Others include the entire lineup of quarterback broadcasters (Troy Aikman, Steve Young, Dan Marino), Raymond Floyd, Hulk Hogan, Nolan Ryan and Oscar De La Hoya. We’re going to highlight Pat Riley though. Your fee gets you a nice soft leather chair to sit back and watch someone else do your work. Also, you’ll get a pink slip to give the person doing your work after they’ve got you to an acceptable level. Lastly, you get a free loop hole that Riley can show you how to use to get out of your job as soon as things start going south.

Continue reading ‘$5K for Bosworth? I’m in’

25
Jul
07

Vegas goes bust

Vegas, babyIn this Tim Donaghy controversy, we all know the real loser.

Not the NBA. The fans are going to keep watching. The people who hate the league probably aren’t going to start following now.

Most likely not David Stern. Firing him could be the final blow to the league. He’s really the face of any stability right now.

Not the players. If anything, they might get to whine about calls more.

It’s Vegas, baby.

Vegas is done. Toast. “Cleaned out” as they say on the strip.

The New York Daily News has a source who says this whole gambling controversy will have “probably have no impact, whatsoever.” I think David Stern would disagree.

Stern has been looking for a reason to keep his boycott of Sin City alive.

Although I’m sure this isn’t what he had in mind, he’s going to appear to have a much stronger argument now. “See, I told you gambling would infect our game. Just imagine if we had a team in Vegas.”

Continue reading ‘Vegas goes bust’