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Archive for June, 2009

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The BA Brokeass Draft Diary is under way. Taking you from Pick 1 until Pick Done. Wait, no. That sounds awful. Okay, I’m going to chronicle the entire first round and the Pistons picks in the second round. There aren’t a lot of stars in this draft. Not even a lot of starters. Alright. This is going to be boring boring.

ROUND 1

  1. LA Clippers – Duh Hickey. I mean Blake Griffin, PF, Oklahoma. This pick was made months ago, on the day the Clippers won the NBA Lottery. Baron Davis was there representing them and when they won he did  a standing back-flip, threw out his back, and was declared ineligible for the season. Blake is the only certain star in this draft and will likely dominate a la A’mare Stoudamire for the next dozen years. He is a beast and will average a 20/10 next year. If Elton Brand did, Griffin will with ease. That’s right, I’m saying Blake Griffin is better than Elton Brand.
  2. Memphis Grizzlies – Hasheem Thabeet, C, Connecticut. When Hasheem skipped his workout in Memphis there was concern he was shunning his potential selector. It turns out his Visa had expired and Immigration was trying to kick him out of the country. That’s what I say whenever I get caught, too. Thabeet is big and that is always useful, but he isn’t much else just yet. I like the pick because, well, who else is there. But I’m not touting him the next Dikembe, that’s for sure.
  3. OKC Thunder – James Harden, SG, Arizona State. This is the right pick. Many thought Spanish PG/teen idol Ricky Rubio would be selected here, to the chagrin of current PG Russell Westbrook. When asked how he might feel about moving over to the off-guard position should the Thunder choose The Rube, Westbrook succinctly answered, “You trippin’,” I think that means he wouldn’t like it. Harden is a rare find: A player who is actually skilled at the game of basketball. Not just talented or athletic, but trained in the game. Stinkers like Oklahoma City need players who can actually play.
  4. Sacramento Kings – Tyreke Evans, SG, Memphis. Sacremento should’ve selected Rubio. He could’ve been the Spanish White Chocolate for those unreasonably faithful fans. Tyreke is nice, but he plays the only position the Kings have shored up. Something tells me a change gon’ come.
  5. Minnesota Timberwolves – Ricky Rubio, PG, Spain. This works out nicely for the ‘Wolves. Rubio is, besides Griffin, the best prospect in the draft. Given that they have the next pick as well, getting high future worth is a smart move. Going traditional is the smart move with the next pick.
  6. Minnesota Timberwolves – Johnny Flynn, PG, Syracuse. I guess if you can’t choose between two point guards, why not pick them both? Oh wait, I know why. Because it’s stupid. Something is brewing in Tradeland. Talk has one of the two going to Milwaukee or New York. Everyone is always rumored to be going to New York. Both of these guys have good shots in this league, Rubio more for the future and Flynn in the present. I’d keep Flynn. Rubio has more trade value and might freeze, at 130 pounds, in the Minnesota winter. Flynn went to Syracuse, the city that proves there can be “a cold day in Hell.”
  7. Golden St. Warriors – Stephen Curry, G, Davidson. Great choice by GS. There are questions about his natural position, as there are with current PG Montae Ellis. One of the two, or the two in tandem, will be able to orchestrate an offensive attack, and the other will play off of him. Curry is the most electric scorer on the draft and already seems like the kind of player we will see sinking game-winners on Sportscenter. Curry may not become an All-Star, but in a draft low on superstars, he is ready, willing, and able to succeed now.
  8. New York Knicks – Jordan Hill, PF, Arizona. There just aren’t many game-changing big men in this draft. Hill could be a poor man’s Chris Bosh; unfortunately the rich man’s Chris Bosh – Chris Bosh – hasn’t proved all that effective in the NBA. Probably he will top out as a more complete Channing Frye. That’s probably as good as it gets at #8 this year.
  9. Toronto Raptors – DeMar DeRozen, SG, USC. A lot of upside, probably ready to perform now based on athleticism alone. Fills a weakness for Toronto; a solid pick. No one was surprised by this pick and it should be helpful. Whatever. It’s boring when things go as expected.
  10. Milwaukee Bucks – Brandon Jennings, PG, Compton, CA/Italy. Everyone expected a point guard, probably not this one. He simply isn’t ready to lead a team, and the Bucks need a team-leader. I would’ve been happier with Ty Lawson. Of course, I’m not a Milwaukee Bucks fan, which makes me happiest of all. The Bucks aren’t good, and this won’t make them better soon, but it does fill a need and Jennings could be exciting in a couple years.
  11. New Jersey Nets – Terrence Williams, SG, Louisville. This is one of maybe three players I wouldn’t have minded seeing as a Piston. The Nets were keen enough on him to trade away Vince Carter this afternoon. Who am I kidding? You don’t need a reason to trade Vince Carter. He’s a douchebag. Williams reminds me of Carter in that he only showed glimpses in college of how good he could be. Unfortunately, Williams (like Carter) has shown a propensity for laziness during  his days at university. The Nets will love him when they like him and hate him when they don’t. Apparently he tore it up in workouts and Michael Jordan loves him. But hey, that combination gave us #1 over all pick Kwame Brown.
  12. Charlotte Bobcats – Gerald Henderson, SG/SF, Duke. He’s a Larry Brown guy (minus the Dukie part): Smart, modestly athletic, rarely screws up. A rich man’s Arron Afflalo? Poor man’s Shane Battier? Either way, he’s a safe pick in a draft low on potential. He will earn minutes immediately but will never start in this league, unless he plays for a perennial loser. Right, he’s on Charlotte. He’ll be starting by February.
  13. Indiana Pacers – Tyler Hansbrough, PF, North Carolina. Higher than expected, though let’s face it, he was destined to go either here or Utah. His medium-length career has already been written, you can read about it on Christian Laettner’s wikipedia page. I actually think this is a decent pick. When the talent pool is dry, pick winners. Hansbrough hates losing and loves team. It’s easy to go full-tilt in individual workouts, Psycho T will go full-tilt every day in every way. And at some point he’ll probably fight Jerry Stackhouse.
  14. Phoenix Suns – Earl Clark, PF, Louisville. Clark will be a really good player if he wants to be. Some call him Lamar odom without the sweet-tooth. He provides relief should someone make an enticing offer for A’mare and he will fit right in running alongside Nash. Phoenix couldn’t have done much better, which is not as glowing an endorsement as it sounds.
  15. Detroit Pistons – Austin Daye, SF, Gonzaga. Few of the mock drafts deviated from this selection. We drafted a taller, thinner Tayshaun Prince. Two inches taller, 25 pounds lighter. Looks just like him. Two years ago I might’ve balked at this pick (just like I’m sure I balked at whoever the pick was two years ago), but now we might need a Tayshaun replacement. The Pistons, under Joe Dumars, have not developed talent well. Tayshaun Prince is the only draft pick who has materialized, and this year we drafted his possible replacement. The Pistons have three second round picks. Let’s hope something exciting happens or I might fall asleep before the end of this.
  16. Chicago Bulls – James Johnson, PF, Wake Forest. Chicago got themselves another beefy interior man. It always seems like they have a couple. He should be as good as Big Baby. That seems like a good measuring stick. You will forget his name within a few seasons, but then be surprised to hear that he is still in the leagye despite your ignorance. Needs to drop a few pounds but an 82-game season has a funny way of sweating those cheeseburgers off of you. He’s good. I’m glad we didn’t take him.
  17. Philadelphia 76ers – Jrue Holiday, PG, UCLA. Great pick for the Sixers. Holiday shot up the draftboards and was thought to have Lottery ability. Once Indiana skipped him over I knew he wouldn’t last longer than Philly. He is smart and athletic, and rivals Johnny Flynn for most like CP3. That’s the model for the contemporary point guard. The one problem is that he’s probably not ready to lead them. He’ll help now, but wasn’t even the starting point guard on his underachieving college team.
  18. Minnesota Timberwolves – Ty Lawson, PG, North Carolina. Okay, what the fuck? Minnesota has drafted three of the top point guards in the 2009 class. Something is happening. Most teams don’t keep three active pint guards, Minny just drafted three. Do something already! That being said, I really like Lawson. He is quick as shit and outsmarts his opponents. Whoever gets him in trade will be pleased. He’s a smart, likeable Jamaal Tinsley. Oh, there you go. Denver traded for him. His presence will make Chauncey better.
  19. Atlanta Hawks – Jeff Teague, PG, Wake Forest. I liked Jeff Teague in college, but I’m not convinced he will wow in the pros. He reminds me of Acie Law in that he is physically capable of playing the point, but ultimately should be playing the two were he more athletic and bigger. Teague will be an excellent back-up combo guard at some point, but he won’t quell the Hotlanta thirst for a quality young leader at the PG.
  20. Utah Jazz – Eric Maynor, PG, Virginia Commonwealth. He’ll fit in for Utah, and by that I mean he is smart, coachable, AND boring. He can score, he can pass, he can defend – and yet he couldn’t find a better college than VCU. He’s not elite, that’s why. But the Jazz already have an elite point guard and they weren’t likely to fill any roles this late in Round 1. Good pick, which is the best grade you’ll get on a PG in the first round at this point.
  21. New Orleans Hornets – Darren Collison, PG, UCLA. The STARTING point guard at UCLA, drafted four spots behind his backup. He’s a good player and will immediately fill the role vacated by Jannero Pargo a year ago. N’Orleans suffered from a high-tempo leader in the second unit and I see Collison filling that role well. Eventually he should exceed Pardo’s level and could be as solid as a Bobby Jackson or Tony Delk before it’s all said and done. Plus, I always like those players who have chips on their shoulders and nothing says “chip” like being out-drafted by your sub.
  22. Portland Trailblazers – Victor Claver, SF, Spain. The Blazers traded up two spots with Dallas, we all thought, to grab Omri Casspi of Israel ahead of enamored Sacramento. That made sense. He’s tough and Portland needs tough. Instead they drafted relative unknown Claver. I would analyze him, but why? He’s from Spain and he’s staying in Spain.
  23. Sacramento Kings – Omri Casspi, SF, Spain. Sacto got their man, and all they had to do was sweat a little bit. Omri is one of those guys you will love in Sacto and hate everywhere else. I love those guys…except when we play them. He’s an Israeli enforcer. It’s only a matter of time before he gets the nickname Munich. And I will call him that affectionately. Think Andres Nocioni but stronger.
  24. Dallas Mavericks – BJ Mullins, C, Ohio State. Mullins sucks. He may be good eventually, but he sucks now. Luckily Dallas has Erick Dampier. That is the first time anyone has ever uttered that sentiment. Mullins is tall and long and you can’t teach that. Everything that you can will be taught to him in training camp and then the D-League. Joel Przybilla is his ceiling, and he’s currently pretty close to the ground. I saw him dropping to the second round as would-be GMs found themselves incapable of selecting him.
  25. OKC Thunder – Rodrigue Beaubois, PG, France. Mike Pietrus vouches for him. Which is kind of like having your band vouched for by Katy Perry. I know nothing about him other than that he is French and runs well. Oh, and also, he’s been traded to Dallas for BJ Mullins. Makes more sense this way. OKC needs bigs, wherever they can get them. And Dallas needs to keep grabbing point guards until J-Kidd gets the hint and retires.
  26. Chicago Bulls – Taj Gibson, PF, USC. Coming out of high school, it seemed the sky was the limit for Taj Gibson. Some six years later, at age 24, he’s still closer to the earth. He does thing swell, has a lot of heart and can rebound, but he won’t fight anyone for a spot on Chicago. Meet one of the NBA’s next semi-decent journeymen. Chicago got Taj and James Johnson in the first round. Eh.
  27. Memphis Grizzlies – DeMarre Carroll, PF, Missouri. I love Carroll, wish we could’ve landed him. He does everything well. If he did even one thing exceptionally ge would’ve been a lottery guy. But dudes like Carroll never test well because their greatest strength is an endless competitive motor. He’s not quick like a 3 or big like a 4, but I’d happily take him playing either position. With the second unit. He isn’t great, after all.
  28. Minnesota Timberwolves – Wayne Ellington, SG, North Carolina. I’m not even going to bother. Four guards already. Let’s talk trades. Darko Milicic and cash were just traded to the Knicks, for Q-Rich and victory cigar. A rumor of A’mare to Golden St. for some package involving Stephen Curry is being tossed around, it sounds like a done-deal except for the “when.” I think I wanted A’mare. Or, more to the point, I think I didn’t want to settle for Chris Bosh. We’re getting Paul Millsap, aren’t we?
  29. New York Knicks – Toney Douglas, SG, Florida State. A typical Knick. The John Starks of this draft, if there is one. He is scrappy and defensive and shoots the lights out. He isn’t going to change a lot of outcomes, but when he is on the court Knick fans will enjoy him. If he had point guard skills he would be unstoppable. Even without them, stopping him is a sonuvabitch. Good grab, maybe a touch earlier than necessary. This pick was purchased from the Lakers.
  30. Cleveland Cavaliers – Christian Eyenga, SF, Congo. A decent player who won’t see an NBA court any time soon. He’s currently in Spain, and like a couple other dudes from this draft, he will stay there. Not sure why the pick wasn’t traded, but hey, Minnesota drafted back-to-back point guards. Crazier things happened.

ROUND 2 (PISTONS ONLY)

35. DaJuan Summers, PF, Georgetown. I REALLY wanted Sam Young. DeJuan Blair was still available, though there is talk of a bum knee. Summers would have been a happy addition if both of the Pitt boys weren’t still available.  Summers just hasn’t shown much, though at times his play has been brilliant. Not a head-shaker or a head-bobber of a pick. Could be a real steal. Could be Jason Maxiell. We’re up again soon, could Young or Blair still be there? Nope. They are selectively consecutively with the next two picks. I’m predicting we select a second big from ‘Zaga, Josh Heyvelt. The pick is coming in…

39. Jonas Jerebko, SF, Sweden. Yes, you read that correctly: Sweden. Detroit drafted a Swede (and I’m not talking about the Red Wings). The chances of this man playing in America are only slightly better than my chances of skiing proefessionally in Sweden. I hear he’s scrappy and long. Gets after it. Blah blah blah. In an interview he said his game most resembles Tayshaun’s. Great, another one. Then he requested Rip’s number. Are the Pistons getting any better through this draft? Is anyone? I’m going to make the preliminary statement that memphis has had the best draft, though I’m not totally sold on Thabeet as an upgrade over Marc Gasol. A solid defensive compliment, yes, but does anyone seem him playing a single game he doesn’t foul out of as a rookie? He was the safe, smart pick at #2, but I’ll be surprised if he ever develops an offensive attack. Pistons are up again in a couple picks and then our draft coverage ends for the night. I’ll stick with my previous pick, Heyvelt, even though we’ve clearly already stopped drafting for the coming season. We’re on the board…

44. Chase Budinger, SG, Arizona. This could be a great pick. I’m not going out on a limb for any gangly redheads, but no on expected Chase to still be around come the middle of Round 2. He’s a combination of the rare white superathlete and the common white sharpshooter. He has also just been sold to Houston. So much for all that. I’m actually kind of happy. The AF4D Draft Diary ends with the Pistons selling a white person. And a ginger at that. Beat it, Red. It’s the beginning of the Walter Sharpe era! Who’s Walter Sharpe? Exactly. It’s going to be a long season.

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From DJStevePorter (a name you can trust?). Because the best hip-hop comes from press conferences…

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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The pre-game pose possibilities are both endless and terrifying.

The pre-game pose possibilities are both endless and terrifying.

It’s been a wild week in the NBA; so wild that it woke a sleeping Fennis from his summer’s slumber. “Zzzzzzzz…Huh? Shaq MMA fight?…Zzzzzzzzzz…Uh what? Fab Oberto a Piston?…grgh…Zzzzzzzzzzzz.”

What woke me for good was the sound of the giant, Shaquille O’Neal, fee-fi-fo-fumming his way from Phoenix to Cleveland in exchange for Big Ben, Little Sasha, and the 46th pick in a draft stocked with five quality players. In other words, Phoenix gave Shaq away for free. And why wouldn’t they? Big Grumpitude had his moments (most of them were in the All-Star Game), but ultimately failed to help the Suns rise. He is paid too large a sum of money to simply tear a team apart with menopause.

He will probably do well in Cleveland and likely be the piece that elevates them to the top of the East again. The over/under is three minutes on how long before Shaq uses his pairing with Lebron to call out Championship Kobe. When a Shaq puppet appears slanderously rapping about Kobe having small genitalia I won’t have to say I told you so. You’ll just know, and we’ll nod at each other.

Ben Wallace will retire to Phoenix just like many an old Jew. Did you ever think Ben Wallace would be compared to an old Jew when he was a 6’7″ center putting up Hakeem-like board and blocks numbers as the top defender in the league? When Big Ben and Shaq were battling down low late in the 2004-2006 playoffs, did you ever think they would both be involved in a two-team salary dump?

For Shaq, this is his last chance. For Wallace, it’s just his way out. A playmaking sharp-shooter like Sasha Pavlovic actually might thrive in Phoenix, but that’s a story for another post. You can expect that post approximately…never. If you’re even interested in that post I want you to leave this site forever.

Look at Kobe all pretending not to listen.

Look at Kobe all pretending not to listen.

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Land of the Lost, the new Will Ferrell movie inspired by the 1970’s psychedelic kids’ series of the same name, comes out today in theatres all across the land. What does this have to do with basketball? Check out this little factoid from Yahoo! Movies about the original series:

4. One of the most memorable creatures of the show were the lizard-like humanoids called Sleestaks. The scaly green bad guys seemed to be everywhere, but due to the show’s budget, only three costumes were ever made. In comparison, the movie had 30 Sleestak suits. The actors inside the suits had to be tall and slender, and one of the early Sleestaks was future Detroit Pistons All-Star Bill Laimbeer, who worked on the show while he was still in high school.”

I would write a joke but I’m too busy picking my jaw up off the floor.

You in there, Bill?

You in there, Bill?

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Some people just recently started talking about the Orlando Magic. Other people just recently started talking. A local story out of Orlando went national yesterday about Ryan Rodrigues, a boy with a paraylyzing shyness referred to as selective mutism, who found the courage to speak watching Orlando Magic games. The team has supplied him and his family with free tickets to playoff games and the Ryan has flourished socially. There’s only one problem. All he does is talk about the Orlando Magic. This boy will go from miracle child to most boring kid on the planet right quick. He’s no longer mute, but everyone around him will wish they were deaf.

Joking aside, it really is a pretty sweet story and if you queer out over things like this you should totally give it a read.

SVG has the opposite of selective mutism.

SVG has the opposite of selective mutism.

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The Finals, finally. Get your last basketball fix until Summer League starts up in a few weeks.

LOS ANGELES LAKERS VS. ORLANDO MAGIC

Only one of you gets to taste gold this time.

Only one of you gets to taste gold this time.

DUBBS:  Well, here we are folks.  The beginning of the end of another long season.  It all comes down to this, the matchup everyone’s been talking about the entire year:  Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers versus Lebron James and the Cleveland – wait, what?  THE ORLANDO MAGIC ARE IN THE FINALS?!?!  How the hell did that happen?  Somebody fucked up!  Does David Stern know about this?  He is going to have somebody killed.  Seriously, Jewish Steel In The Finals of Chaos.  What happens now?  What about the the Kobe vs. Lebron Vitamin Water ads?  And those awful puppet commercials they keep trying to force us into finding funny?  WHO WILL SAVE THE RACIST PUPPET COMMERCIALS?!

BROKEASS: That awful puppet looks as much like Dwight as it does Lebron. That’s about poor puppetry. And you know I have no tolerance for poor puppetry. I also have no tolerance for how long these damn playoffs run. I can’t even remember what they’re fighting about anymore. I don’t want this series to be played. I want them to shake hands and call it a draw. Just give the championship ring to Lebron so he can stop pouting and shake somebody’s hand already.

DUBBS:  You are racist because you think all Black puppets look alike.  This series is going to be fun.  Because it’s unpredictable.  Everything was so predetermined for the Finals.  Then Orlando won and suddenly it wasn’t.  The matchups in this series are funkier than expected.  Two very different teams are facing off.  And we don’t have to listen to the announcers go on and on about Kobe and Lebron every minute of every game.  This series could be a blowout or it could go seven.  I have no idea.  You need to get excited again.  To flip the script on Steph’s sage words – You’re caught up in life.  You need to get caught up in basketball.

BROKEASS:  You wouldn’t know fun if it sucked you off at an amusement park. I’m caught up in a playoffs as old as time. Orlando making it to the Finals would’ve been exciting a month ago. Now, they’re just one of the last two teams awake. All the champion wins is the right to turn off the lights.

DUBBS:  A month ago, Orlando couldn’t have made it to the Finals.  That Magic team and this current Magic team are very different.  This is a team that has become who they are during the playoffs;  really, only a couple of weeks ago during the Boston series.  A young team coming into their own versus a veteran team expected to be there.  A young superstar trying to emerge as a dominant force and win his first championship versus an aging superstar trying to cement his rep as one of the greatest to ever play the game.  If this doesn’t wake you up, I think it’s time for me to trace my penis on your forehead.

BROKEASS:  I’m awake! I’m awake! Put your marker away. You could draw any penis, why does it have to be a self-portrait? The Lakers are awake, too. That Houston series guaranteed LA wouldn’t be sleepwalking through any more of the playoffs. Not discounting the Magic, LA is better. In retrospect, Orlando had clear advantages in the previous three rounds. Advantages that favored their best players. This time, far less so. Their positional advantages are no longer aligned with their positional strengths. If both teams play to the level of expectation, the Lakers will win.

DUBBS:  But who knows what the expectations are for Orlando?  The goalposts have shifted several times for them throughout the Playoffs.  They could show up with a Just Happy To Be Here vibe and get stomped.  Or they could show up and work hard and beat a team NOBODY’s giving them a chance to beat, just like last round.

BROKEASS: Is Orlando really better than we expected? Or are Cleveland and Boston worse? LA can’t be faulted for not exceeding expectations when expectations were for them to be fighting for a championship in June. They are. No one thought that Orlando would get this far and no one thinks they will win it. Sooner or later the critics will probably be right. This isn’t a challenge to the Magic’s resolve. They are the worse team in the series. If Dwight goes off like he did in the Conference Finals, sure, anything could happen. But the Lakers are younger, bigger, and healthier on the block than the Cavs.  If Boston could curtail him, he will be truncated by LA. There’s a subtle difference. Orlando needs to pick a point guard before anybody starts worrying about them.

DUBBS:  They need to stick with Rafer because he got them there and you don’t switch your lineup all around headed into the Finals.  Rafer seems to be developing a taste for the big moments.  And there’s no bigger moment than the NBA Finals.  If Jameer is healthy and not too rusty (which is a big if), bring him in as a backup.  But let Rafer lead the team.  Still sort of a scary thought.  That thing we complained about each round?  That Dwight Howard should be unstoppable but wasn’t?  Well, he is now.  Dwight Howard is a man. Andrew Bynum is a boy.  Pau Gasol is an old Spanish woman.  And Lamar Odom is a Diabetic coma waiting to happen.  Magic Shooters stay hot.  Dwight manhandles.  Stan Van keeps his cool (ha) and triumphs.  Orlando in 7. Magic Fan, I’m with you!

BROKEASS: Not even Mighty Dwight can steal a rebound from LO on a Skittles buzz. Odom, Gasol, and Ariza counterpoint Lewis, Turkoglu, and Pietrus (that’s right, a Mickael Pietrus reference before a series. You growing up, Barefoot!) better than any team in the league. And Kobe hasn’t even been mentioned yet! I’ll give Counrtney Lee more credit than we have in previous rounds. But donning that mask will be the only thing that prevents Kobe from breaking his face. A rookie standing between Black Mamba and a Shaq-less championship? As the kids say, laugh out loud. I agree with you about Skip and think, no matter how you slice it, point guard is an advantage the Magic hold. It’s an important one, and coupled with this coming-of-age big man you keep talking about, worth about two games. Lakers in 6. Countless LA douchebags, I’m siding with you.

Every one of our predictions, even the ones we disagreed on, have come true. The Finals will be no different.

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Stan Van Gundy was just as shocked as the rest of us.

Stan Van Gundy was just as shocked as the rest of us.

When an underdog defies all odds by beating an overwhelming favorite, we tend to say that no one thought it could be done. This is slightly inaccurate. No one, except the team itself, thought it could be done. In the case of the Orlando Magic, the superlative may actually be true.

Orlando is thinking long and hard about returning injured point guard Jameer Nelson to the lineup far ahead of schedule. They are referring to Nelson’s ailment as a “season-ending shoulder injury.” That is another slight inaccuracy. Yes, Nelson has been debilitated with a shoulder injury. But the season-ending part was the result of a timing-optional surgery the team chose for mid-season because serious title contention was a longshot.

Surprising EVERYONE, they made it to the final two teams. Their ultimate opponent is the Los Angeles Lakers and that only adds to the desire to test Jameer. He was the Magic’s best player in two close victories over LA, dropping 27 and 28 on the defenseless Lakers.

I am sure Jameer Nelson is pushing hard for this. In sports, the only thing harder than losing is watching your team win without you. Jameer has discovered a deeper ring of hell: Watching your team win with Rafer Alston instead of you.

I don’t know if it’s impressive that Orlando has beaten everyone’s expectations or depressing that the best team in the East gave up on their season in February. I guess I’m just happy we don’t have to endure any more of those puppet commercials.

Jameer Nelson has a case of the "Rafer Alston stole my position" blues.

Jameer Nelson has a case of the "Rafer Alston is stealing my championship" blues.

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