Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Tables Have Turned

The worst thing about playing a team you are guaranteed to beat is the outside chance you won't beat them. Welcome to the psyche to everyone who has to play the Nettes in the last couple weeks of the season. Seeing the Nettes on the schedule right now is worse than seeing the orange-hot Milwaukee Bucks, the streaking Phoenix Suns, The Jackson Five, or even the Promise Making Chicago Bulls. You never want to lose to the worst team. Ever.

As a Heat fan I went through it a week ago as D-Wade and Co went to the Meadowlands and I am staring down the barrel of another potential disaster the last game of the season in Miami.

Here is why it sucks. Lets say you are the Phoenix Suns who are a game out of second place in the Western Conference. One of your rivals, the Mavs, are playing a tough Grizzlies team on the road and the other rival, the Jazz are playing a tricky Warriors team at home. You've got the Nettes on the schedule. One of the 3 worst teams OF ALL TIME but who are playing like a playoff team now. Winners of 3 out of 4 including one over the Spurs. So the Suns are thinking they are moving up to at least the 3rd seed and possibly the 2nd. You have penciled in a win because you don't think you'll be the team to lose to them. You won't be one of the 10 wins they have all season....right?

So while one Lopez tries to get braggin rights over the other, I'll be biting my nails hoping that the Nettes can pick up a win or two against someone else so it doesn't have to happen to my guys.

TeeMak Reinvents The Postage Stamp

I went to the Jazz/Knicks game the other night and, besides being underwhelmed by the Jazz's nonexistent Blood In The Water instinct, I was completely floored by a player I didn't think I could like less.

Tracy McGrady, you are a being of miraculous ways. There I was, thinking I despised you at the very peak of my despise-ation. And you, with your loafing indifference and half-assed shrugs (I mean, MAN, who shrugs half-assedly? A shrug is, by definition, half-ass!), cleared the clouds away, revealing yet ANOTHER PEAK OF DESPISE-ATION. Plaudits, Tracy.

In any other job, you would be fired. And your severance package would stink because your employer would have just cause. You clearly don't give a crap. You couldn't defend a mime in a fake box. And wouldn't even try. For millions upon millions of dollars. Ask the average American what they would do for just ONE million dollars.

Take a charge every night for 82 nights? Absolutely.
Run myself to exhaustion everyday for a full calendar year? No question.
Live in NYC and play basketball? Wait. YOU are paying ME?

You talented, lazy prince of the coast. Only in the unreality world of the NBA and its ridiculous contracts can you get away with such garbage. No wonder Houston sat on you until they could ship you to somebody who "wanted" you. Frankly, I'm amazed D'Antoni even bothers. He's shown no aversion to sitting purported "studs." (And let's get this out of the way now: you are no longer a stud. You may have been a star. Moronic voters may have been deluded enough to nearly vote you into an all-star position. But you are done. Cooked.)

Would I be so abrasive if you tried? No. I respect guys whose knees have quit but whose hearts refuse to. I respect guys whose grit outweighs their talent. I respect guys whose effort nods to the fact that they're blessed to get to go do for a living what the rest of us carve time out of our pathetic lives to do for FUN.

I hereby take away from your cousin Vince the moniker of The Postage Stamp. Your revolutionary approach to mailing it in has shamed him. Congratulations. I'll even capitalize the "T" in PosTage Stamp for you. Since I know you'd be too lazy to do it yourself.

PS: Thanks for the draft pick.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


This video is getting quite a bit of attention lately, but not for the right reason. Everybody thinks that Biden was referring to some legislation that passed and was signed on Tuesday. The signing that Joe Biden was so excited about was that of me returning to the Cavs. See, I had been hanging out in Washington for the last couple weeks and I made a few friends. Who knew DC was so friendly to 7 foot Lithuanians? Among those new friends was none other than the pride of Scranton, PA.

That friendship had its benefits. I didn't have to spend my time at the local YMCA or some DC high school working on my game. I was in the White House every day balling it up with Joe and O (as they like to call each other) on the White House parquet floor. I was always on Joe's team because Obama had someone new playing on his team everyday; Brad Pitt, MJ, Bill Bradley, Barkley. But Joe and I were an unstoppable combo. We didn't lose a single game.

Thats why it is a big effing deal that I am returning to Cleveland.

When I got back to Cleveland and signed my new deal, LeBron whispered the same thing into my ear that Biden whispered to Obama. I'm glad he finally realizes it.

You know what I said back? Don't screw this up or I'm going to be playing in New York next year.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Things I Wish I Had Remembered Before Last Wednesday or Broken Brackets

Ohio, St Mary's, UNI, Cornell, and Washington made everyone completely unproductive over the weekend and completely leveled everyone's bracket. Sure, I wish I would have pick at least one of those teams. Who wouldn't (because NOBDOY did unless your name is Jay Bilas). But if I had to fill out a bracket again, knowing what I know now, I would do things a little differently. However, the changes I would make don't include any of those teams. It involves this grainy little YouTube clip:

Why did I not pick Jordan Crawford and his Xavier teammates to do more than beat the Golden Gophers before bowing out? How did I forget the most talked about basketball player of last summer? And most importantly, how did I not pick out some kind of anti-LeBron storyline to root for during the tournament? I know I've done something of a 180 on LeBron this season, but that doesn't mean he isn't still fun to root against. Jordan Crawford was that storyline and not only did I miss it, I air-balled it.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Two Recommendations

We do album reviews here. Nor movie reviews. Not book reviews. Album reviews. And even those are starting to be hard to come by. But, as Charlie T mentioned, I've been on the clock with The Man lately and thus away from TBC. But it did give me some time to read.

I finished Bill Simmons' The Book of Basketball. It's as exhaustive as it looks and sounds. My quick, Twitter-length review is: exhaustive, funny, smart look @ who matters in NBA history by an admitted homer. Ends weak.

But I read it- all 600+ pages of it- in under three months. So that's saying something. If not for the last two chapters' petering out, I'd really recommend it (as long as you take it with a spoonful of I Can Tolerate A Celtic Bias antivirus). Maybe later I'll take a stab at a real review, but suffice it to say, I tore through it. I even used his MJ Is Better Than LeBron Until... argument a day after reading it.

And, speaking of Simmons, I can't recommend highly enough the latest 30for30, Winning Time about Reggie Miller's classic clash with the 90's Knicks. Even my wife was riveted, gasping, laughing out loud. Very very good.

Upset Special

This just in from Jay Bilas following a suspenseful Selection Sunday.

"I really like the chances of Golden State advancing as a 14 seed underdog. I think the way they match-up with Baylor is really going to give them an advantage. The way they can stretch the floor with their shooters and cover ground on defense with their length will be hard for Baylor to overcome. I also think Stephan Curry will be a great pro prospect going somewhere in the second half of the lottery. The kid can really shoot the ball."

Thanks Jay. Golden insight once again.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


The Black Converse has been creeping along as of late. For this we sincerely apologize. Sometimes Bruce Wayne has to take the cape off and attend board meetings. Its not that he would rather sit in meetings as opposed to fight crime, its just that crime fighting doesn't pay the bills.

Moving on...

With less than 20 games to go in the season, its time for a little reconciliation with the story lines this NBA season. We've let ourselves go a little, so its time to hit the gym.

Boston Celtics Countdown to 10 Losses: We knew that storyline was going to be over somewhere between Christmas and Groundhogs Day. And it was. The more fascinating story will be to see if Ra'Sheed can lose 10 pounds before the playoffs.

Sixers Glory Days: Remember when Iverson was on the team for a second time? Those were the days...

Toronto Raptors "Canada's Team": Are they still playing? I thought the NBA Season stopped for the Olympics.

Tales of Bango the Buck: He has got to be liking his job as of late. The Bucks seem to be the only team with a full stadium judging by the highlights.

The Atlanta Hawks: Keefe or Dominique They really haven't been either the last couple months. I'd say they are stuck somewhere around Steve Smith or Kevin Willis.

The Charlotte Scrap Heap: Yes they added a couple more to the pile at the trading deadline. They added Ty Thomas in exchange for career scrap-heapers Flip Murray and Acie Law. Also, they are solely in the hands of His Airness. I'm not sure what that means but I thought it was worth a mention.

Washington Bullets: We had to put these to rest after someone took our demands a little to seriously.

Dirk as Sandra Bullock:Mavs on a tear just as Sandra wins her first Oscar. Coincidence? We like to think it isn't.

Morey Smart Points: Last year's overachievers are sinking a little. But he did get rid of T-Maq. He will always have that shining gold star at the top of his report card.

Spurs Typical Season: Its been typical in that we haven't thought about them even one bit since January. Other than that, I think they are getting too old. (Which is they typical response every year) And they got a steal in the draft. (Wait...that always happens too) I guess there is nothing new here.

Trailblazers: The Hold Steady or The Animal Collective: They are in the same boat as the Hawks. Not great but not terrible. Kind of like the new Beach House album.

There you go. Now we are up to speed on the season (save a few story lines). I hope when I wake up from my bracket-filling-induced coma that the Heat are no longer a .500 team. I'll take .515 or even .508. But come on, this .500 business is killing me.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Its 5:37

23 to 6 might be a more appropriate way to say it since thats whats happening in LeBronland right now. He has confirmed that he will be changing his number from 23 to 6 for next season, apparently to honor Michael Jordan.

Someone might need to get LeBron a set of Basketball History tapes that date back before the he was born because 6 is just as important of a number for two reasons; Bill Russell and Julius Erving. But not too wax too nostalgic for a couple of legends, I'll take the time to speculate what this switch might mean.

Theory 1: He is going to channel Dr. J and grow out a 'fro and participate in the dunk contest. Likelihood: 3%

Theory 2: He wants to win as many titles as Russell and thinks that having the number will help him. Likelihood: 5%

Theory 3: He is going to play for the Miami Heat next year and the number 23 is retired there (Michael Jordan). Likelihood: 15% (he could have whatever number he wanted upon changing teams)

Follow-Up Theory A: He is going to play for the Chicago Bulls (MJ), Atlanta Hawks (Lou Hudson), Boston Celtics (Frank Ramsey), Houston Rockets (Calvin Murphy), or New Jersey Nets (John Williamson). All have the number 23 retired. Likelihood: 25% (again, he could have whatever number he wanted upon changing teams)

Theory 4: He is sending a message that he will hot be playing for the following teams that have the number 6 retired; Boston (Russell), Orlando (their fans), Philly (Dr. J), Phoenix (Walter Davis), Sacramento (their fans). Likelihood: 10% (again, he could have whatever number he wanted upon changing teams...and we already know he won't be playing for any of those teams)

Theory 5: LeBron secretly wants to be Kobe (though nobody can figure out why) and has decided that he is staying in Cleveland and wants to give his career a re-start a la Kobe Bryant when he went from 8 to 24. Likelihood: 50%

Theory 6: Back to the Kobe Envy Theory from above, he saw that Kobe changing his number made Kobe's jersey the highest selling jersey. LeBron wants to have the highest selling jersey so he is switching his number. Likelihood: 60%

Theory 7: Number 6 is LeBron's Team USA number and he wants to recreate Team USA in New York with Wade and Bosh. This is the first step. Likelihood: 45% (Bosh and Wade could just change their numbers upon switching teams)

Theory 8: LeBron is tired of Shaq getting all the media attention with his thumb surgery. Likelihood: 80% (LeBron is an attention hog, this story puts him on the front page and gets people talking about him)

Theory 9: He actually wants to honor Air Jordan. Likelihood: 65% (never take anything at face value)

Theory 10: Nobody really knows, not even LeBron himself. Likelihood: 95%

Blow the Speakers

What happens when you have the music turned up too loud for too long? You're going to blow the speakers.

Looks like our favorite Pacer rookie just blew his speakers. Looks like the Psycho T meter is now off. See you next year Psycho T.