All-Star Weekend and Other Thoughts
Sunday evening I sat down in my favorite chair (or THE chair) and watched the annual “NBA player’s attempt at streetball” known as the All-Star game. I was watching and waiting for the players to start over passing and throwing too many ally oops, taking too many threes and trying to make the behind the back pass when a simple chest bass would do. I blinked a couple times, it was a little hazy, but I am pretty sure it I saw some defense – sort of.
1. All-Star Voting- The selection process for the NBA is completely a popularity contest and Commissioner David Stern is alright with that. Names sell tickets. But every season there are more and more deserving players who do not get a roster spot because of players like Shaq, Allen Iverson, and Chauncey Billups. The NBA must reexamine the process of both the starters and reserves, it’s ridiculous (most All-Star/All-Pro voting is a joke).
Kevin Durant and Al Jefferson were more than worthy, even if Jefferson is injured. Durant is currently fifth in scoring averaging 25.5 points a game and has scored over 30 points in four of the last five games. His monthly scoring average has increased at least 2.5 points each month. Staring with 22.9 in Nov. to 30.8 in Feb. PS – he won the H.O.R.S.E. competition during the break.
Jefferson is sitting seventh in scoring with 23.1 and sixth in rebounding pulling down 11 rebounds a game, plus 1.7 blocks shots a game. Jefferson also shoots 50% from the field and was the leader of Minnesota’s semi-resurgence before going down with a season-ending knee injury.
2. Indiana Hoosiers lost another Big-Ten game. No. 20 Illinois came to the ‘Dome and was only slighty pushed on their way to a 13 point win. The outcome of the game is not why I mentioned the game.
I saw two things that should give Hoosier Nation a lot of hope. First, I saw Ton Crean blast one of his players. So what? In the current situation, many coaches would probably try to keep everything light and happy and not really push this team because “they are not very good” and times are tough. Not Crean and that is why I have a coach crush on him. He ripped into his players like they had a chance to win the Big-Ten. He reacted the same way Tom Izzo does when the MSU Spartans are struggling. It was great.
Secondly, the ‘Dome was packed. I mentioned this in a recent post, but the Hoosier faithful understand and know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel - see Kentucky “Unforgettables” circa 1989. But this year the Hoosier fans are at every game, knowing it is going to be difficult but waiting to explode with appreciation for the kids who are busting their butt to get them back to winning.
3. The Big East should changes it’s name to Big Beast. Let me just a couple of the Big East’s physically imposing players. PITT’s Sam Young and DeJuan Blair, UConn’s Jeff Adrein, Louisville’s Earl Clark, Terrance Williams, and Samardo Samuels, Notre Dame’s Luke Harongody, Syracuse’s Paul Harris and Arinze Onuaku.
There are so many physically dominating players, I am surprised more players have not been injured. And there are more.
4. Random Food for thought. Vince Carter and T-Mac could have been a poor man’s (aka Toranto’s verison of) Jordan and Pippen. Think about that for a minute.
5. Duke and UNC played last week and the Tarheels won. Not too surprised. But then Boston College beat Duke 80-74. Boston College has the two best wins in the ACC and probably won’t make the NCAA’s.
BC has Tyrese Rice, who is capable – and willing – to take and make big shots. But there is no way in hell they should able to beat both UNC and Duke. Especially, UNC in Raleigh.
6. The NBA should implement a “You Are Unbelievably Stupid” clause where they can suspend players for being friggin’ idiots (could have been used many times in the past). First case to go before the “Stupid Case Reviewing Type Guy” would be Phoenix Suns Jason Richardson. Richardson was arrested going 90 mph in a 35 zone. That is bad, but not the worst part. His three year-old son was in the car and NOT in a car seat.
ARE YOU SERIOUS!
Were the getting chased by people with guns? Because, unless someone is shooting at you and/or there is a major emergency, that child needs to be in the appropriate seat. I am still waiting to hear from Richardson’s people to give an excuse – er – I mean reason. As a father of a 2 1/2 year old – this really bothers me.
7. The slam dunk contest was fun to watch and didn’t take forever like it has in recent years. Nate Robinson and Dwight Howard are both athletic freaks. And they are young enough to participate in the contest again and again.
Other than Howard – Rudy Fernandez is the only other player I would take on my team. Rudy is a solid athlete, great shooter, experienced in big international games, and he does everything very well. JR Smith is good, but he – like Robinson – is a head case.
PS – LeBron threw his hat into next year’s contest. So next year we could have Howard, Robinson, LeBron and Blake Griffin. They better have extra rims on hand.
8. Michael Phelps gets his FREEDOM. I was thinking what a great waste of time it has been for the South Carolina police trying to build a case, but what great publicity.