Posts Tagged ‘John Wall’

Currently the NBA dominates many of the main pages of sports websites, not just with playoff updates but with the upcoming Lebron sweepstakes. Beyond the upcoming free agency of Lebron, several significant things occurred over the last week that will make a difference in the remainder of this season. The fascinating part is that something major has happened at each level from ownership to players performance all within this time span. I will highlight the week in four categories: The Team, The Owner, The Coach, and The player.

The Team: The Celtics

Garnett: I get to be Bernie next time Paul!

Remember the regular season? You know the one in which the aging stars were taking turns being Bernie carried around by a couple of younger guys? Then something happened….some say it was Quentin Richardson’s shove on Pierce in Game 1 vs The Heat and other’s think they were tired of being over looked. Whatever the change, it has made a huge difference.

Series 1 MIA Heat vs BOS Celtics, Best player: Dwayne Wade, MIA

Series 2 BOS Celtics vs CLE Cavaliers, Best player: Lebron James, CLE

Series 3 BOS Celtics vs ORL Magic, Best Player:   Dwight Howard, ORL

Yet Despite not having the best player in any of the series, Celtics have simply out played everyone and if the playoffs ended today, Rajon Rondo would be the Playoffs MVP. Now I  know he did not have a great game, but he has been the drive force and put up some great games through out the playoffs. Although, Boston lost tonight with Pierce and Allen carrying the load, they are up 3-1 and the Magic needed OT to win one game. Rajon Rondo will come back strong next game, and it will be 4-1 series after Wednesday in Orlando, unless Matt Barnes get’s his fiance to come in and fight for him cause she can box! (As seen on Basketball Wives).

The Owner: Mikhail Prokhorov

It's affffirmatav I own you

Although the sale of the New Jersey Nets was approved on May 11,  Mikhail made last week his by appearing at the Draft Lottery and doing an interview with the Yes Network’s Mike Francesa on Mike’d Up (Formerly Mike and the Mad Dog). To his dismay, New Jersey didn’t land John Wall, I mean, they didn’t get the first pick in 2010 Draft, ending up with the three pick.  This could basically end the chances of getting Lebron to come in and play with Wall.  Unless the Wizards find that trash bag full of Rubles along with the 3rd pick in Belmont Harbor.  Mikhail made his fortunes on some insider deals and favors, so I don’t see him changing his practices now. Wizard’s GM go to http://www.xe.com/ucc/ before you start negotiating the terms.

The Coach: Mike Brown

Nice Cuff links, plenty of room to hide the buy off money from the Knicks

In an effort to keep their King, Mike Brown must be beheaded. Anyone who saw the lineup verse the Celtics would think Mike Brown was trying to land a job out of town. His line-ups with Shaq, Big Z, and the reemergence of Boobie Gibson while keeping his high energy guys, specifically Anderson Varejao, on the bench was so deplorable that I am surprised no one has mentioned the 1919 White Sox, someone should contact Donaghy’s Knick Friends for some info on the fix. I guess Coach Brown had seen all the exhibits at The Rock and Roll Hall of fame in Cleveland and couldn’t stand the thought of staying. Can we give more fire to the made up rumor about Delonte West and Gloria James, by saying Mike Brown actually video taped on four occasions? Good-Bye Mike, your coaching won’t be missed, but I hear your ability to capture a scene in wide angle might.

The Player: Amare Stoudemire.

"No Watery or Glassy Eyes Here"

After Game 1, Stoudemire called Odom’s game one performance lucky. Well turns out it didn’t matter what candy he ate cause the Lakers took  game two. Perhaps the Stoudemires’ were just unlucky with the first two games and his mom’s joy ride home, if that was the case yesterday luck changed for him as he poured in 42 points in a must win to keep the series relevant game (see NBA comebacks from 0-3, p.s. there aren’t any). Being shopped around mid-season to a crucial part of a finals contenders is quite the swing, he must have gotten a special pair of rec specs that have changed his fortune and cursed the Cavs for not picking him up.

The old ineffective pair

That’s just the tip.

Enjoy

The Bearded Guy

Dear Reverse Oreo Followers, that means just you sittingpugs,

I am back from the abyss to rescue you from reading about Wrestle Mania.  Turns out, The Mark still considers it a sport. Anyways, if you know me, a few of the readers do, you know I have been in a dark place this week and half….I saw KU go down to NIU. Although, I will never say WE won the 2008 national championship or WE lost to NIU. I am still a huge fan of my home state team.

This article is about my denial…my denial to listen to The Mark or to believe the elements of the breakdown coming.  Bill Simmons has been the only one to mention this…he beat me to it…it’s the Sherron Collins Affect. Announcers love him, he played tough basketball, he is the winningest player in Kansas basketball history, he led a team minus 6 of the players from the national championship team to a big 12 title and sweet 16, but he is the reason Kansas lost and the reason this years team seemed so disjointed.

Lets break it down…..Kansas wins the 2008 National Title six players leave due to graduation or the draft. 5 are drafted. So whats left for KU is Collins and some what Aldrich. Cole had a great game in the semi-final which gave fans a glimpse of the future, but no one was expecting much from this team in 2009.  So there are zero seniors and one junior to speak of….Sherron…it became his team.  He battles! He carries a youthful team with potential but typically plays like at their experience level. He carries  them so much and so often that in the tournament last year other players are petrified to shoot, and it shows in their percentages and attempts. The role playing white guys (Reed and Morningstar) have no confidence in the one skill that lets them be on the floor (3 pointer) and Sherron only trusts Cole as a secondary scoring option. It was alright against North Dakota State, it was more than enough than Dayton. Then came Michigan State….Sherron muscling down the stretch…missing a key shot, then turning it over, then missing his one free throw. And the year is over.

Sherron and Cole stay, Kansas has an amazing recruiting class, all but one pretty much rode the bench this year, and the young guys have matured. Pre-season number one, potentially 3 All-Americans with depth and Tyshawn Taylor coming off a stellar summer as a leader in u19 international competition. Then the season begins:

-Tyshawn looks uncomfortable on the floor and like he doesn’t quiet fit in to a specific roll. Making him sloppy with the ball several times early and down the stretch.

Explanation:  Sherron has decided to be the team’s leader he must also being the teams point guard. He handles most of the offensive sets and has a high number of turnovers numerous times.

-Cole Aldrich doesn’t look like “Tournament Cole”, you know the one who had a triple double with blocks and a smooth hook shot.

Explanation: Many things a foot injury and family member passing away, but also his touches all year depended on how many offensive rebounds he could get, Sherron’s drive style offense created a ton on congestion in the paint. No room to get Cole the touches needed to wear down teams.

Xavier Henry disappears mid-season, January, making me believe Kansas has a shot to get him back next year. He disappeared so much that in the first K-State game, Self often went with the limited abilities to create their own offense of Morningstar and Reed over him. Giving into “Ok, we played these guys last year, all we have to do is give the ball to Sherron and let him do him.” That team looked like the tournament team from the year before, scared deferring to Sherron, turning the ball over trying to get it to him, didn’t we have two significant lower block threats? and an amazing wing player?  Atleast Sherron came through that time.

Explanation:  Xavier was not allowed to create because of Collins style of drive first-look second. I hope I can Thank Collins for that later.

Collins created all these problems because he had to be the leader, he had to be the scorer, he had to be the go to guy. A lot of people are blaming Self for this loss, for not letting his guys be the athletic guys they were against NIU. But this team was taken from Self a long time ago when it became all about Sherron.

Thanks for the memories, the wins, the good and bad, and for hopefully hurting Xavier’s draft stock enough that I get to see him in a Kansas Uniform one more year.

Notes:

Pre Bracket Final Four:

Syracuse, Kansas, Michigan State, and Kentucky.

The one odd one I pick sticks!

All Americans Still Alive:

John Wall, Eliminated: Elite 8

Evan Turner, Eliminated: Sweet 16

Wes Johnson, Eliminated: Sweet 16

Scottie Reynolds, Eliminated: Round of 32 almost Round of 64

DeMarcus Cousins, Eliminated: Elite 8.

Just saying…..

Thing to Watch Now:

The Pacific

The selection and post-selection shows are finished and the brackets are all over the net waiting to be printed.  By the way, if you’re in the States and you need help with your picks, make sure to pick up a copy of the Monday USA Today.  They always, in my opinion, have the best coverage and analysis before the tournament.  It gives me a headache to watch all the shows talk about the tournament.  Most talking heads are vague enough that they can always be right later in the tournament.

If I were back in Chicago I would have already filled out ten brackets just as a precursor to all the information I will devour in the days before the tournament.  Don’t disregard that first bracket you fill out “just for fun” because sometimes your gut is better at picking games than stats.  Sometimes too much information is bad information.  When all is said and done and the information has been absorbed, I fill out my final bracket and that’s the one I use.  I’m not Multiple Bracket Guy.  I hate that guy.  Don’t be that guy or any of these guys.

I'll miss you most of all Jim Nantz

The tournament has been very lucrative for me over the years.  I’ve won a pool on five occasions.  In 1994, while at Eastern Michigan, I nailed the tournament for four large.  While everyone was drooling over the Duke roster of Grant Hill, Cherokee Parks, Antonio Lang, Chris Collins and Jeff Capel, I put all my chips on Arkansas with Scotty Thurman and Corliss Williamson.  The other times I’ve filled out a bracket the story was always the same.  I’d kill round one (28-4, 29-3) and then my brackets get busted in round two.  So, by the end of the first weekend I’d already be out of the running.

Thanks Scotty, I owe you big time.

This site doesn’t promote gambling but it’s not discouraging it either.  If you’re in college, find your campus bookie (every school has them) and become friends with him.  He’ll automatically be the most interesting person you know.  If you know what you’re doing, you can make some good money in college.  If you’re just looking for a quick, big score then stay away.

Guys of his ilk will be the most interesting people you ever know

I’m not going to bore you with my (lack of) insight on the greatest three weeks of sports because I haven’t been able to really follow the season as a whole here in South Korea.  I know the rankings, I’ve seen box scores and I’ve even been able to watch streams of some games but that’s not enough that you should care what I think.  I will give you my Final Four and winner but feel free to disregard it.  I’ll just do it for posterity.  You’ll probably get some insight later in the week from The Bearded Guy and The Blasian.  To be honest, forget everything The Blasian tells you about the tournament.  He still thinks the Memphis Tigers were in the 2008 National Championship game against Kansas but we all know that Memphis went winless in the 2007/2008 season.  Yes, Kansas did win the tournament that year but I can’t remember who they played.  The NCAA can be confusing sometimes when it comes to records and history.

I know Mario Chalmers hit a big shot in 2008 but I can't remember against whom

With the time difference, the lack of coverage in the ROK and the fact that North Carolina and Eastern Michigan are not in the tournament, I don’t have much to say about March Madness.  This will be the second time in my life that I won’t be in the States for the tournament.  In 2003 I was in Hong Kong and it sucked not being able to see any games.  I don’t know if there was something like justin.tv back then.  You can’t get psyched about it by reading recaps and message boards (remember them?).  Somehow Malcolm Gladwell became a huge fan of the NBA as a child by only reading old issues of Sports Illustrated and never seeing an actual game in his native Canada but Gladwell must have some gene I’m missing because I need to watch the games to get excited about them.  Maybe it’s not a gene, maybe it’s a Canadian thing.

Malcom Gladwell - Genius and Canadian. That doesn't sound right.

My favorite memory of the March Madness was back in 1996 when I travelled with a bunch of other Eastern Michigan students to Indianapolis for rounds one and two of the tournament.  Eastern beat Duke in round one and it was the greatest sporting experiences I’ve ever had.  The Eastern fans were hot and it was nice giving it back to the Dukies.  Plus, Greg Newton told me to fuck off as Duke was leaving the court at the end of the half.  Good times.  Unfortunately, we lost to Ray Allen and UCONN in round two but we had so much fun over those four days.

What I think might happen:

Final Four – Kansas v Pittsburgh, West Virgina v Duke
Final – Kansas v West Virginia
Champs – Kansas

I’m sure you’re gonna be hearing a lot about John Wall.

Try to watch any games Gus Johnson is doing because you’ll be in for a wild ride.

Gus Johnson is excited about everything

Back in the day, Craig Bolerjack and Ian Eagle would always be in The Pit in New Mexico, Boise or some other out-of-the-way venue and I couldn’t wait to see where CBS shipped them off to.  It was like they were being punished or paying their dues.  We use to actually have bets on where they would show up.  Now that Bolerjack and Eagle have moved up the pecking order, who are the announcers CBS sends to the Siberia of March Madness?

Rock Chalk, Jayhawk!!!!

No one will ever call me a hero for my game picks!  For the second week in a row, I went 1-3.  I declared that we had to take the over (57) in the Saints and Cardinals game,  it ended at 59.  So I was in a funk because of this miserable performance again, and couldn’t bring myself to post. 

On the upside, Texas suffered a KU situation, battling at home against A &M, basically playing like garbage but pulling out the win in overtime (see KU vs. Cornell).  Then followed the survival with a road loss to a rank opponent who is probably overrated. K-State will still be K-State, they will be eliminated in the second round of the tournament. (While Tennessee was playing with great emotion after the loss, see hotbox-gate)  So now the only unbeaten left is Kentucky, but in all reality its only a matter of time until they are winless, just ask the 2007-2008 Memphis tigers or the Marcus Camby UMass 95-96 team, they have are a Calipari NCAA Sanction waiting to happen. Someone may want to check John Wall’s SAT/ACT scores.  Another question worth pondering if the 2007-2008 Memphis Tigers and the 1995-1996 UMass Minutemen (the good kind) went defeated how did Calipari win the Naismith  College (96 and 08) and the Conference USA  (2008) and A-10 (96) coach of the year awards? He must be the only coach in the history of the game to have a completely defeated team TWICE and win coach of the year with said defeated team!  Someone should discuss that….That being said, he still hasn’t won a national championship.  Speaking of Shady….. 

Article to check out: The Dirtiest Player, GQ 2-2010 

Don't mess with his Carwash

The wheels have come off for the quietformer Colts Receiver Marvin Harrison. Apparently he is not a nice guy.  Everyone used to love him, he did his job, he was quite, the anti-T.O. Then all of a sudden he is kicking a dude in the streets in Philly and trying to shoot him while the guy is in a car.  Some role model, as a society maybe we should back-off the idea of the idea of humility on the football field makes for a great person.  Something worth noting: His sports bar is aptly named Playmakers, obviously he loved the  canceled ESPN show when the players are going crazy beyond the football field so much that he named his sports bar after his beloved canceled show. 

At least he has finally earned a nickname: Marv the Menace!  Look for him to release a hip-hop album very soon. 

What to watch: Final episode of the Jersey Shore

Don't make him use his strength

I am already in mourning.  I can’t wait for the final episode followed by the reunion, a reunion I will watch any time I feel like the dumbest person alive.  Ronnie has turned out to be controlled by Sammi unless you follow him on the boardwalk and then some sort of hulk character emerges and he kills anyone on the 2X4s who makes any comments about him.  Ronnie hasn’t mentioned what he does outside of this month on the shore, but can you imagine his employer seeing him drop the dude with a running one punch!!!  Someone needs to put up a photo of that dude crumpled on the ground and Ronnie jumping up and down!  Ronnie possess that strength that certain people have that aren’t that smart!  Speaking of physical violence, J-woww may be a man!  This would explain the terrible boob job and extreme strength.  When this show started who knew almost everyone would get hit in the face!  The Mark is going to hit this up more in depth so I will stop for now… 

Korean Sports Update: 

It's a celebration bitches

Some men’s and women’s volleyball teams competed, half won and half lost, and no one was entertained by their beauty, besides the one female Puerto Rican  player. 

Handball maintains an untapped market that the United States could dominate.  A slow-paced game, that all you have to do is attack a goal by throwing the ball! Really  Come on now, US let’s get some intramural teams together and a get ready for 2012. 

He would have score 50 a game!

KBL missed out on the Stephon Marbury “Sweepstakes”.  He signed in the Chinese league for some low amount of currency so he can sell The Starburys in China.  China welcome blisters and broken down shoes! 

Problematic song of the Month: Miley Cyrus- Party in the USA (Chopped and Screwed).  Thanks Draper! 

Ok Cheers! 

The Bearded Guy

If you’re a point guard who can dribble, who can sort of see the floor and who can stop at the three-point line and pass the ball without ever getting a look at the basket, then the Korean Basketball League is the place for you.  If, on the other hand, you can dribble, command the floor, dribble penetrate and get multiple looks at the basket, then please go elsewhere.  Guard play if frowned upon in South Korea.  They don’t need you pretending to be the most important player on the team, scoring 30 and dishing 20.  Let the big guys and the three-point specialists handle the scoring.  All you’re supposed to do in Korea is take the ball over mid-court and dish the ball of to someone bigger than you as soon as possible. 

A guard with any kind of game would have a field day in Korea.  Stephon Marbury, as crazy as he is, would score a minimum of 60 points a night here in the KBL.  There’s not a lot of defense on the guards here.  They only worry about the bigger forwards and the centers here.  That’s why a guy like Samaki Walker, who should be killing the other team for at least 30 a night, isn’t dominating like he should.  As soon as he gets the ball, there are two or three guys on him in a second but the guard has nothing to do but watch. 

Let’s say that John Wall, instead of walking out on Memphis and instead of going to Kentucky, decides to go overseas to play for a year before going pro.  Let’s also say that he doesn’t go to Europe but for some reason decides to ply his trade in South Korea for the SK Knights.  This is what his box score would look like:

John Wall – 70 points, 25 assists, 15 steals

That would be every single night.  Plus, Samaki Walker would also have 30 points and all SK games would end something like 130-70.  Guaranteed!

I don’t know who’s in charge of the KBL but someone needs to tell the coaches to let the guards do their thing.  Maybe a foreign coach is needed to show them how to handle guard play.  Kelvin Sampson, instead of being an assistant for the Milwaukee Bucks, could do well here.  He wouldn’t have to worry about those pesky NCAA recruiting rules.  C’mon KBL, give me some guard play.  I’ll watch more, I promise.