Tuesday, October 27, 2009

910 Conversation: Northwest Division


Last postseason, I found myself in a position I never thought I’d find myself: rooting for Carmelo Anthony. It surprised me, but it was really my only option once he was one of few remaining obstacles between a) Kobe and a Shaq-less ring, and b) Zenmeister and the breaking of Red Auerbach’s record. I had no choice.

Neither of us at TBC are Melo fans. We’ll be upfront about that. But neither of us are morons either. The kid can ball. He’s an all-star who can exploit almost any matchup either with the jumper, the drive or the inside game. And he has the assassin instinct. No one is saying any different here. Still, something about Melo rubs us the wrong way. And it’s not just because I’m a Jazz fan and I have intra-conference angst. I don’t like the way he carries himself. He tries to be a thug but doesn’t back it up (see: swing at a Knick then retreat). I dunno. Just can’t root for the guy.

But we’re willing to eat crow. (Ask the Kings.) Or, in this season’s case, Caramelos. Let it be written: every time one of us has to say something like “gotta hand it to Carmelo” or “I hate to say it, but that was clutch” or anything like that, we will eat a Caramelo. We’ll keep a running tally of how many Caramelos we have to eat all season as a sign that we’re willing to be wrong and admit it.


We debated this one for awhile. Is Kevin Love the story? Is there a Ricky Rubio angle that hasn’t been leche-d a la muerte ? We liked the idea of Rambis and a clothesline, but Simmons got there first. It struck us that KG is way ahead of everybody on the T-Wolves all-time lists, to the point of being nearly untouchable. Such a young franchise with turnover like they’ve had doesn’t amass a lot of legacy. But we believe in Al Jefferson and his ability to be a legacy-type player. So, we’re tracking Al Jefferson’s ascent on the T-Wolves All-Time lists- scoring, rebounding, and whatever else he ascends. We’ll check in with who he ‘s passing. That means you, Terrell Brandon and Tom Gugliotta.


OK, media, we get it. You love Durant. And, no, we won’t sleep on the Thunder. Don’t worry.

Who we’re worried about are those poor, swindled Seattle-ites. Having both spent some time up in the NW this season, we got in touch with the depression and angst and resignation and bitterness that the Thunder left. So we’re going to look at Levels of Depression with parallels between Sonics and Nirvana fans. What’s the equivalent of having to watch Kurt marry Courtney? Hearing the Foo Fighters borrow liberally from Tom Petty? Thinking about Krist Novalesic? Seeing animated Kurt sing Bush songs on Guitar Hero? These are our questions.


So. Much. Hype.

So. Many. Expectations.

And to make things worse/better, Oden has shown signs of life in the always-reliable measuring stick that is the preseason.

This team is supposed to win. And supposed to win now. But will the hype hold up? We’ll gauge the Blazers’ success (and ability to live up to the never-ending buzz) on a scale that has Animal Collective’s Merriweather Post Pavilion (a TBC whipping boy and, for the record, a completely overrated collection of “songs”) on the low end and The Hold Steady’s Boys And Girls In America (a TBC classic and, for the record, an album that everybody was freaking out [or backlashing against] about when it came out, only to have the hype actually not live up to the greatness of the record. So good.) on the high end. I don’t know for sure, but that would probably mean a trip to the Conference Finals at least. Ask me in the spring.

So. Much. Bolding. That bolding was disastrous, but it was either that or bold pretty much the entire paragraph.


Charlie T and I have given ourselves license and long leashes to talk about our favorite teams at will. No criteria. No need for any kind of objectivity whatsoever. And I am a Jazz fan. So prepare for some bias.

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