Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Shame on Karl Malone

I don't have much to say about this story out of Buffalo, but I didn't want it to slip through the cracks.

A young man by the name of Demetrius Bell was drafted out of Northwestern State by the Buffalo Bills in the 7th round to potentially play tackle for them.

Bell's father is NBA Legend Karl Malone, yet they barely know each other. What's worse is that Bell's mother was allegedly only 13 when Malone impregnated her as a sophomore in college.

I'll let you read the story for more details. I just want to say how sorry a guy like Karl Malone is to not take care of his kids. I also wanted to bring this story to light because it's not just the "hip-hop" influenced athletes who are terrible fathers, Karl Malone is one of the biggest rednecks in sports.

Yet, he's always had issues with taking care of his children. If this was Travis Henry (someone I've picked on throughout the years), this story would be on's front page. Since its Malone, the story is invisible.

This, along with the Roger Clemens fiasco, would have people outraged if the offenders fit the profile of the typical black athlete. Since Malone and Clemens clearly aren't, the mainstream media gatekeepers are pushing these stories to the backburners. Shame on them too.

R.(oger) Kelly?????

I know I've been posting like crazy lately, but this is something I had to comment about. Roger Clemens legacy was already ruined on the field, but now we find out that he's a pervert.

A few days ago, the NY Daily News released this story detailing The Rocket's extramarital affair with country singer Mindy McCready, which began when she was 15?????

This is nuts. What's surprising is that the media seems to be downplaying that aspect of it. Just like they downplayed the fact that he's a cheater by continually letting him and his lawyers tell their side of the story, all of the talk has been soley about the fact that he had an affair.

Where's the outrage that he's a cheater, cheater, and a pervert? People in the media seem kind of upset that he cheated in baseball and act like they don't even give a crap that he cheated on his wife. They seem to have missed the part about him sleeping with teenagers. (The source said that while McCready met Roger when she was 15, their relationship didn't become sexual until she became a rising star.)

Still, the possibility that he had something going on with a 15 year old should make people more outraged than they are. Now if he was a black man, ....

R.I.P. Phoenix Suns (2004-2008)

Its official: I’m no longer a Phoenix Suns fan. They have reportedly parted ways with Mike D’Antoni today, officially ending an era.

First, let me give some background to my fanhood. I’m from Portsmouth, Virginia, part of the Tidewater/Hampton Roads area. There are no pro sports where I’m from, so you kind of have free domain to like whoever you want to like as a fan.

In the NBA, I started off as a Bulls fan during the Jordan Years. After Jerry Kraus ruined the team, I moved on to the Raptors, as Vince Carter became my first post-MJ favorite player. While Vince was doing his thing in Toronto, I also started becoming a big fan of a little point guard with a crazy game in Dallas, Steve Nash.

The Mavericks were coached by Don Nelson around the turn of the century, and had an exciting young nucleus of Nash, Dirk Nowitzki, and Michael Finely. Later on, they added Antawn Jamison and Antoine Walker to the mix, and would hoist threes and run and gun with the best of them.

As Vince started to earn a reputation as a guy who didn’t care and I started to compare my unorthodox game to Nash’s, Nash started to become my favorite player.

When he signed with the Suns prior to the 2004-2005 season (my second year of college), Nash and Phoenix became entrenched in my favorite team slot. The Suns signed Nash and Quentin Richardson, and hired an unknown coach named Mike D’Antoni.

They trotted out a starting line up of Nash at PG, Joe Johnson at SG, Q. Rich at SF, Shawn Marion at PF, and Amare at C that season. They ran, they gunned, they shot a ton of threes, and it all revolved around Nash’s play at PG. He’d throw all sorts of passes at any and every angle, bang threes, and make everybody around him better.

He was so important to that team, that he deservedly won the MVP that season with some of the most pedestrian stats of anyone who’s ever one the MVP award. His numbers from that season (15.5 ppg, 11.5 ast, 3.3 reb) wouldn’t jump out at you, but if you watched them play that season, you understood why he won the award.

For the next few years, they would rely on Nash, his ability to find anyone at the court at anytime, and the ability to hit threes. Players like Quentin Richardson, Raja Bell, Walter McCarty, Jumane and James Jones, Leandro Barbosa, Jim Jackson, and Tim Thomas would become integral to their outside attack, although most of those players only played there for a year.

On the interior, it was Marion, Stoudemire, Steven Hunter, Kurt Thomas, Boris Diaw and Grant Hill. Nash held all of these seemingly mismatched and uninspiring players together, made the marginal ones effective, and the good ones great.

Two things interest me about their strategy. Besides the Joe Johnson situation, who could’ve and should’ve resigned, but didn’t, I always wonder why they didn’t keep the same group of guys together? Another one is why wouldn’t they use the damn Hawks pick, or any of their own picks?

Getting back to the point, something strange happened this season. It was clear that either Amare or Marion had to go. My thought was to move Amare for someone like Rasheed Wallace and spare parts (who would fit in perfect with their offense, and fix their hole in the middle). Instead, they chose to trade Marion for Shaq.

That move, coupled with their slow removal of consistent outside threats that weren’t important to the team’s grand scheme (the lack of James Jones type guys), basically transformed the Suns from an innovative team to a regular team. An old regular team. An old regular team that was exposed by the Spurs.

In away, D’Antoni had to go. He might end up landing in a place like Toronto, where he’ll be allowed to do what he does best. 7 seconds or less. My only hope is that he takes Nash with him where ever he goes, so Steve can be rescued from the doldrums of having to play regular basketball.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Senior Year Blues

Being a senior sucks right about now for a lot of Drexel University students. For starters, most of the seniors at damn near every other school in the nation are pretty much done with school. This is intensified for me, as I am in a city-wide chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi, and many of my frat brothers will be getting it popped off for the entire month of May Pac Man Jones style.

Meanwhile, I’ll be trying to drink enough to have fun and still make it to class. In a few of my classes, I’ve already missed the allowed number of absences per term. In another class, I’m sure the professor truly gets enjoyment out of making our lives miserable.

That said, I still haven’t had time to really get into the playoffs of the major league baseball season. Apparently the Rays (I’m still used to calling them Devil Rays) are in or near 1st place in the AL East. WTF is going on?

Meanwhile, I did catch the end of the Hawks/Celtics game, which was especially great when Joe Johnson went nuts in the 4th quarter. His crossover on Leon Powe was disgusting.

What is the purpose of this post? Simply to vent. I WANT TO WATCH SPORTS!!!! For the first time in God knows when, I haven’t had sufficient time to watch sports, play sports, play sports themed video games (I do have to review GTA IV for my feature writing class … woe is me), and even write about sports.

This blog is the most anybody’s gotten from me in terms of content since March. Hopefully, I’ll be able write a column next week, watch the playoffs, and even catch a baseball game or two.

Until then, its box scores and the 2 AM Sportscenter to satisfy my daily sports fix. I need a drink.

(As I was getting ready to post this rant, I noticed that CP3 tallied a triple-double [24pts, 15ast, 11reb] in the Hornets series closing game against Dallas. Please, please, please give this man the MVP. Thanks. Also, kudos to the NBA for attempting to end the 1st round in a timely fashion this year, opposed to the past few years where game 2 in some series would be Sunday and game three would be Wednesday.)

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Venting about the Draft

It’s been a long time since I did my first and only mock draft. I only did one because I didn’t see the need of continually adding and changing my mock draft based on combine and Pro Day results.

It’s hard to believe how far some have fallen and how quickly some have risen. The NFL definitely puts too much thought into things like the 40-yard dash and not enough analysis into what a player does on the field.

Sometimes, there’s too much analysis, just like anything else involving the NFL. For some reason, NFL coaches feel the need to work 12-hour days and sleep in their office watching film. With most teams having 8 months off per year, I can imagine that the over analysis continues throughout the off season.

That said, where is Vince Hall? Where is Xavier Adibi? Where is Andre Woodson? Just look at today’s third round. Its so many guys like Dan Connor, Reggie Smith, Earl Bennett, that you would think were 1st or 2nd round guys. Justin King didn’t even get drafted until the fourth round.

I am glad that Miami did heed my advice and draft Jake Long. I’ve already read some people saying that he won’t turn out to be a good pick, like Jason Whitlock, but I disagree. He’s a stud and definitely will fill a big hole Miami has had for years, which is the offensive line.

Note to NFL Teams: Please draft the guys that showed they were good in college. Thank you.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Quick Hits 4/22

As my college career winds down, I’ve been grinding like crazy. That said, I pretty much missed all the basketball this weekend. I haven’t watched a single inning of baseball, and I probably won’t do another mock draft before this weekend.

In the City of Philadelphia, this weekend is Penn Relays weekend. My chapter, the Delta Eta Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi, is holding all sorts of events. Between that and our NUPE Week for the rest of the week, I’m not sure how much time I’m going to have to devote to sports.

Of course this is devastating to a guy like me; I’m definitely going through some sort of withdrawal. That said, lets get on with the show.


I’m normally a Chad Johnson supporter. However, I think that he should ride it out in Cincinnati. I hate to see guys try to jump ship when it’s sinking. When they were on the rise, he was Mr. Bengal. Now he wants to play for a better team. You can call it Jermaine O’Neal syndrome. Like Chad, O’Neal got his paper from Indy and was the face of the franchise when they were good. Now they suck and he wants out.

That’s a little backwards to me. However, Cincy is dumb for turning down two 1st round picks for Chad. They need all the help they can get. Although I think he should stay, if I was Cincy I’d milk whoever wanted him for as many picks as possible.

On another note, I’m glad Miami seems to be leaning towards taking Jake Long. He is a sure thing. I’m not really sold on Chris Long, who was expected to end up in Miami at some point. I think a lot of his hype comes from the name, but I’ve been wrong about things like that before.


I really have no idea what’s going on. Baseball just isn’t really an interest of mine right now. I was really turned off by all that Mitchell Report stuff during the offseason. It overshadowed everything that the baseball offseason is usually about; trades, free agents, teams/players to watch, etc. Maybe I’ll start watching it in May.


I’m really excited about the NBA playoffs. This year’s playoffs have the potential to be one of the best playoffs in recent memory. That said, don’t be surprised if the top four seeds in each conference advance to the second round.

In the East, Boston, Detroit, Orlando, and Cleveland are clearly superior to the teams they’re facing. I know Detroit lost to Philly the other day, but they’ll probably get it together and win four in a row.

Washington would normally be a challenge to Cleveland, but I’m not sold on the health of Arenas, Butler, and even Jamison and this point. Too bad, as this might be the last time these two teams face each other with LeBron and Gilbert as the lead acts.

In the West, the Lakers, Hornets and Jazz have pretty easy matchups. The Suns and Spurs will probably go down to the wire. When Phoenix made the Shaq trade, I was very critical to the point where I didn’t even know if they would make the playoffs. If they don’t get past the Spurs, a team they made this trade for, Steve Kerr will start taking some heat again.

Regardless, I plan on watching every game as soon as I get that kind of free time, which will likely be next week.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

NBA Regular Season Wrap-Up

Tonight is the final night of perhaps the best NBA season of this decade. The season has been so good that I literally have no idea what's going on in Major League Baseball right now. I haven't even bothered to look at stats or standings. (Additionally, I spent most of last weekend drinking myself into a stupor in celebration of my 23rd birthday).

Here are some interesting facts from the season.

The Golden State Warriors could finish the season 49-33 and not make the playoffs. However, if the 76ers lose tonight, two of the Eastern Conferences teams will be under .500 heading into the postseason. However, the 76ers have shown tremendous grit in making it this far in their first full season without Allen Iverson.

The Hawks, the 8th place team in the East, have snapped the longest postseason drought in the NBA.

One of the biggest stories of the season was the resurgence of the Boston Celtics, who could finish with 66 wins this season. Kobe Bryant led the Lakers to the number one seed in the West, which has many fans salivating over a possible Celtics-Lakers finals. In fact, that much would help bring the NBA back to prominence.

As stated by Bill Simmons, the MVP race has been one of the greatest ever. The league's future is in great shape as almost every superstar in the league is under 30 right now.

Perhaps there were only three lowlights of this season. The biggest one is how sleazy the situation has been regarding Seattle's ownership trying to move the team to Oklahoma City, and David Stern's backing of those sleazeballs.

The Knicks are tied with the Miami Heat for second place in this column. Their situation is deplorable, and it’s heightened by the fact that they are the New York Knicks.

Meanwhile, the Miami Heat made a mockery of the NBA during their last month and a half of play. Pat Riley leaving his team to watch March Madness has to be unprecedented. Nothing says taking more than having a team full of guys who aren’t even D-League all-stars, let alone NBA players finish your season. I hope like hell they don’t get the first or second pick this year.

Moving on, this year’s playoffs should be fun to watch. Hopefully there won’t be a ridiculous amount of time between games this year, which has become a staple of the playoffs recently.

Anyway, here are my awards for this season.


Clearly I’m all for CP3 for MVP. However, I think this one might go to Kobe. This has been far from his greatest season, and he did try to get traded at the beginning of the year. He plays on perhaps the deepest team in the league, a team that would still be good without him. But since he hasn’t won the award yet people will feel inclined to vote for him. Kobe is the best overall player in basketball, but Chris Paul has compiled a season that’s arguably better than those from Nash’s two MVP campaigns.

Rookie of the Year

This award has been Kevin Durant’s from the start. He had an up and down rookie year, finishing on the upside. He’s a great talent. Hopefully he’ll put on some weight this offseason and come back more physically prepared for the NBA game.

6th Man of the Year

Manu Ginobli’s award by default. He comes off the bench as a formality, superstition, or both.

Most Improved Player

Hedu Turkoglu made the Magic a threat in the East this year. He also made their signing of Rashard Lewis look very foolish, as he’s the third best player on the team at best.

Defensive Player of the Year

I’ve seen Kevin Garnett up for this award on many sites, but I don’t see it. He’s changed the attitude of the Celtics and has energized their fan base. However, their true MVP and should be MVP candidate has been Paul Pierce.

If we have to give a Celtic an award, give this award to Paul Pierce. However, I don’t feel inclined to, so my would-be vote goes to Marcus Camby. He leads the league in blocks, is second in defensive rebounding, and is doing everything that Ben Wallace used to make all-star teams for (and is a far greater force on the offensive end).

Coach of the Year

This is a very difficult decision. Usually, it goes to the coach of the team that was the biggest surprise. Guys like Stan Van Gundy, Byron Scott, and Doc Rivers will probably get a lot of votes. However, I think Jerry Sloan should get the award. If we’re giving Kobe the MVP because he had a good season and hasn’t won it yet, why not do the same for Sloan.

While some of his players may loathe him, he’s been able to adapt to his roster and the play of the league and opened up the team’s offense. By doing that, he’s now the head coach of the Northwest Division Champs.

All NBA-Team
1st Team

C Dwight Howard
F LeBron James
F Paul Pierce
G Kobe Bryant
G Chris Paul

2nd Team

C Amare Stoudamire
F Kevin Garnett
F Tim Duncan
G Tracy McGrady
G Steve Nash

3rd Team

C Marcus Camby
F Carlos Boozer
F Carmelo Anthony
G Allen Iverson
G Deron Williams

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Sigh of Relief


Did I jinx Chris Paul? He had a horrible game last night as his team lost to the Utah Jazz. A day before, I was pumping him up for MVP.

His line from last night - 4 pts, 9 ast, 2, reb, 3 stl.

However, before last night Paul had at least a double-double in 15 of his last 16 games. Last night was also only the second game this season where Paul failed to get double digits in assists or points. Coincidentally, the other game came against Utah as well.

That said, don't fret CP3 fans, he's still the MVP


The sigh of relief, of course, is that Kansas won the national title on Monday night, sparing me from making one of the worst predictions of all time (although, I picked the NY Giants to go like 5-11 this year and they won the Super Bowl).

When it came down to it, Memphis was taken down by the things I figured would take them down all season; free throw shooting and lack of coaching. I don't think they ran one play the entire game.

What got Memphis that far was the fact that Derrick Rose and CDR had been unstoppable all tournament. What propelled Kansas was their combination of athleticism, poise, and coaching.

Random thought: What does Rock, Chalk, Jayhawk mean?

Monday, April 7, 2008

Eating Crow 60% of the time ...


One of the main reasons I started this blog was to give me an outlet to make bold predictions. When you’re in the business of making such predictions, you teeter between being a genius and an asshole.

With the Memphis Tigers, I’m probably the latter. I don’t think I slept on Memphis. I knew how talented they were, I just didn’t think they could hold it together for five to six games.

I expected them to shoot poorly from the line (which they only did against Mississippi St.), to play undisciplined on offense and to have defensive lapses. I though John Calipari’s lax method of coaching, at least offensively, would come back to haunt them. I was definitely wrong.

Perhaps what was most foolish was I didn’t even give them a chance to win. I now find myself wondering if that was just an omission or was I really dumb enough to think that Memphis didn’t have a chance to win the championship.

They have clamped down on defense, and while they still don’t run many plays on offense, they are far more superior from an athletic standpoint then probably 60 of the teams in the tournament.

They made UCLA look like one of the Cal St. teams, in terms of athletic ability. Their performance was very overwhelming.

Now, the only team standing in their way is Kansas. Kansas, as I did write earlier, probably has the best combination of depth, coaching, and athleticism of any team in the tournament. Normally, I’d rant and rave about how Memphis didn’t have a chance, but I’m too embarrassed to do that.

Out of all the foolish predictions I’ve made, not giving Memphis a chance to get to even the Elite Eight has to be the worst, hands down. Therefore, there will not be a tale of the tape from me today. I really don’t have a clue who will win. From an analytical standpoint, I think Kansas should be able to take them down.

However, after watching them dismantle Texas and UCLA in their last two games, I’m not comfortable picking against Memphis. Regardless of who wins, this game should be a high scoring game and very fun to watch.


I haven’t written anything about baseball yet. The reason why is because I’m just not into it right now. This year’s tournament and the NBA have been so good, I just don’t care to turn on a game or look at stats and rosters and try to predict who is going to do what.
I’ll probably start following baseball more after tonight, when the only other game in town is the NBA.


Speaking of the NBA, the Western Conference playoff race between Dallas, Denver, and Golden State for the last two playoff spots is going to come down to the wire. From a viewing standpoint, I’d rather see Denver and G-State make it than Dallas. However, with Dirk coming back early, it seems as if Dallas is going to make it in fairly easily.

What’s most important is that Chris Paul wins the MVP. He’s going nuts right now, and recorded his fourth career triple-double last night.

On March 16, I first used this space to campaign for Paul to win the MVP. Here were his stats then:

21.4 pts, 11.2 ast, 3.9 reb, 2.7 stl, 49% FG, 36% 3PT, 87% FT

Here are his stats now:

21.5 pts, 11.5 ast, 4.0 reb, 2.7 stl, 49% FG, 37% 3PT, 85% FT

In just three weeks he’s been able to improve his scoring, rebounding, and assist average. He now leads the league in assists and steals and has his team in the playoffs and headed for the #1 overall seed in the Western Conference. Please, give this man the MVP.