If you thought I quit blogging…you’re wrong!  I took a serious break though.  No excuses either.  I work, I party, I chill.  But I used to do that even when I was blogging, so again, no excuses.  It’s been quite a while since my last entry.  When I pull up my past entries, it doesn’t say “yesterday’s posting”, but rather “a while ago..” .  Once I saw that I said WHOA.  Time to put an end to this.  So, I realized I do have quite a bit on my mind about the league happenings.  Here we go:

-I know I wrote quite a few articles about Grant Hill, but wow, this guy has been putting up semi-Grant Hill-of-old numbers.  Quite impressive.  That being said, I think he’s reached his season peak, and of course, I fear of his inevitable season ending injury.  I have already traded him in one of my fantasy leagues.

-Baron Davis is one of the best players in the league, not just one of the best POINT GUARDS.  He’s finally getting some credit where it is due, but still, not enough!  This guy is on the brink of a triple double every night.  He’s leading one of the league’s best offenses, yet still probably not considered one of the league’s best.  I know in a fantasy league of 15 people, he would be in the first round.

-Dwight Howard is a monster.  The funny part is he’s only 21 (or not even?).  WOW…

 -Boston.  No one expected these guys to do this well, this early in the season.  The crazy part too is that all 3 of the BIG 3 are averaging over 20 points per game.  That being said, I STILL wouldn’t have KG as the league MVP at this rate.  Team MVP forsure, but right now I think you have to start thinking D.Howard.

-The Cavs truly are a one man team, and with LeBron out, they’re proving it.  As I’ve set before, last year was a fluke for these guys. 

-I expect Kobe to stay put for a while in L.A.  On another hand, I do expect Jason Kidd to be out of N.J. by the trade deadline.  With Andrew Bynum playing so well, it’ll be interesting to see if the Lakers can cook something up around him.  Doubt it, but who knows.

-Why is Rip Hamilton leading the league in technical fouls and not Sheed Wallace?  Weird!

That’s all folks.  I will try and keep at it as much as possible.

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A few thoughts on my mind this morning:

1) Congrats to all those reaping the benefits of having Chris Paul and Peja Stojakovic in their fantasy lineups last night  (such as myself).  Time to celebrate?  Don’t think so, but hey, it was a huuuge lift. 

2)Mo Williams has been slow starting.  I drafted this guy hoping for last year’s numbers, but so far he’s only been mediocre with a larger amount of turnovers.  The guy needs a little shakeup.  Time to start earning your money, Mo!

3)Too much Kobe talk still.  I’m still sticking with my preseason prediction of that he’ll be a Laker until the trade deadline.  Now all the writers are saying he’s not even worth his “value” that the Lakers are trying to get.  I find that kind of weird about the best player in the league.  I’m still a Kobe fan, and I know you are too. 

4)I’m loving how much Ben Wallace sucks now.  The Pistons clearly inked the right guy in signing Chauncey Billups.  I’m sure all Detroit fans are saying “Sheed is the only Wallace we need”!!!

5)How much do you love watching the Nuggets, the Warriors, and surprisingly the Raptors?  The Raps seem to have a fantastic team chemistry where the scoring seems to be more balanced than in past years.  Kudos to them, except for their dreadful loss last night to the Bucks. 

6)It’s all about Yiiiiiiiii.  This guy has been pretty good so far, considering he really has to share the ball with a lot of guys on that lineup.  They should easily have a playoff spot if their bigs can stay healthy.

 

That’s all I’ve got for now.

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  1. The Rooks

 

This year has a very exciting rookie class that will be sure to entertain.  Who won’t try and watch Kevin Durant?  Can this guy play at the NBA level?  He couldn’t take Texas too far in the NCAA tournament, but now the Sonics are building around him.  I’m  expecting him to be an 18 and 7 guy this year.  Beyond Durant, there’s the Mike Conley Jrs, Yi Jianlian and who knows, maybe even a little Greg Oden at the end of the season.

 

  1. Kobe to Explode

      I’ve said it a few times, but I don’t expect Kobe to go anywhere until the trade deadline.  But when that deadline arrives, it will be more of a blockbuster than KG himself (if that’s even possible).  As we know, Kobe is a man of the spotlight, and once the season starts, there’s only one way to stay in the light…produce!  I know the likes of Ron Artest and Stephen Jackson would agrue that this isn’t true, but to a real NBA fan, it’s all about who puts on the best show ON THE COURT, and Kobe will be the man, again.

 

  1. The Denver Nuggets

 I’ve probably been overdoing this a bit, but I’m a firm believer that the Nuggets have serious potential this year.  The West is still strong, even without KG, but the Nuggets field a team that has the proper weapons.  Since Allan Iverson headed to Denver, he’s gone under the radar.  After the half season of learning to play together (AI and Melo), I feel these two will FINALLY figure it all out and form a chemistry that will be second to none.  Wasn’t it just a couple years ago that everyone thought AI was the best player in the league?  He’s not that old yet, and he’s still one of the quickest players with the ball.  How can you deny these two?

 

  1. The BIG 3 in Boston

      Kevin Garnet, Paul Pierce and Scott Pollard…..I mean Ray Allan.  Three of the leagues best players somehow ended up on one of last year’s worst teams.  There’s no doubt that the Celtics will be this year’s most improved team.  It’s just a matter of how far they go?  I think its obvious that it all comes down to injuries.  If they can all stay healthy, the sky’s the limit.  With an injury to one of them, there’s not much to watch in Boston.  I say Conference Finals at max.

 

  1. The New York Knicks/Mafia

This would have been even more interesting of a point if Ron Artest was picked up by the Knicks.  Either way, they still acquired Zach Randolph.  Along with Eddy Curry, the two form a pair of the scariest looking guys you could ever pass on the street or on the court. On the court, if these guys can get it together, they have potential to be one of the best turnarounds in the league.  With the East still wide open, how can you deny these guys a playoff spot.  I’d take them right now (before the season starts) to finish the season ahead of Orlando.

 

  1. The Season Starts Sooo Soon!!!!

I couldn’t be more excited, and I know you can’t either.  Unfortunately for me, I started writing Clutch 3 in the offseason.  At times, material was limited and creativity started minimalizing ( although the Hottest Hoops Wife series was a smashing hit, and I will be doing my research for Episode 4, so watch out!) but I kept writing with the excitement in my mind, knowing that once the season starts, I won’t be able to stop writing.  This season promises to be one of the best in the past couple years, and I’ll be watching the opening tip off Wednesday night.  Will you?

All you read about these days is how Kobe Bryant won’t show up to training camp because the Lakers didn’t make any significant off season moves.  As well, you’ll hear that Andre Kirilenko wants out of Utah and wants to play elsewhere, even overseas.  Do you really think these guys’ teams will let them get away with the lazy approach?  I don’t think so!  Firstly, Kobe is a ball player before he’s a business man.  He’s not the type to hold out.  He’s a guy that loves the game, and would rather ball than sit on the sideline.  Ultimately, this guy is a leader.  What kind of a leader doesn’t show up on day one, or holds out in the middle of the season (see A.I. missing practice-its just practice).  This isn’t Kobe’s style, so I wouldn’t be in any rush to buy the hype.  Onto AK47.  This guy is under contract with the Jazz.  He’s clearly getting overpaid, and doesn’t even fit into Jerry Sloan’s system.  If I were him though, I’d stick around.  The Jazz have something great going on, nearly making it to the finals last year.  Beyond that, he’s making wayyy more money than he’s even worth.  It would be in his best interest to stick around for the remainder of his contract, and then go travel the world, play ball, or whatever it is he wants to do afterwards.

On a side note, I apologize to the loyal readers as I’ve been taking long absences away from the blog.  Life gets busy sometimes, and you just have to roll with it.  My goal is to keep back on my game though, so keep checking back.

Finally…practice?  This never gets old!

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Yesterday at ESPN, Chris Sheridan wrote about team USA’s success and went on to evaluate each player’s contribution in a grade format. Of course it’s easy to give Carmelo, Kobe and LeBron an A, A+ and A respectively. Those guys are on any school’s honour roll (although I would argue Kobe should just as likely have an A+ too). The grades that surprised me and I disagree with are specifically Tyson Chandler, Tayshaun Prince, and Michael Redd. Starting with Chandler, Sheridan gave him a B. This is unfair because the role he was set out to play, he played unbelievably! He wasn’t chosen to be the starting centre and put up those numbers. He was chosen to be a solid defensive specialist and be a rebounding machine. He accomplished all of this, and blocked 14 shots in total! In we’re evaluation his contribution based on what he was supposed to do, I give him an A! Next, Tayshaun Prince. Sheridan gave this guy a B. I was so happy when the team added this guy in the first place. The team chose him because every team needs role players like himself. They didn’t need him to come in and score points at all, but rather do everything else (ie: rebound, play defense,etc). Although his shooting percentage was down, he was one of the team’s leading rebouders! I remember catching that he had something around 12 rebounds one game! This guy should get more credit for job he did well that he was supposed to do. I’d give him an A-. Finally, we have Michael Redd. Sheridan gave him a B+. Unlike Chandler and Prince, Redd was brought in for instant scoring. The last time I checked, he average 15.4 point on a team where the scoring was so spread. This is impressive! Although that average would be mediocre in the NBA, this is significant for a bench guy in international play. His job was to score, and he was reliable in this position. He deserves and A!

Of course, anyone and everyone could argue a half grade here and there, but I was taken back by Sheridan’s harsh grading. I know he’s a teacher in school I would NOT want.

In honour of the Kobe vs. LeBron debate recently posted here, I felt it was right to put up a great LeBron video for everyone’s viewing pleasures.  Since I recently put up a Kobe video here, it is Lebron Bron’s turn. Out of all the videos I was browsing through, this one is completely of Bron in high school.   It’s a little long, but the entire thing is ridiculous.    Here we go…..

LeBron or Kobe?

August 17, 2007

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(ESPN)

When the time comes for Team USA to take on the best of the rest of the world, which US superstar is going to be the leader.  Clearly, the two names at the top of the list are LeBron James and Kobe Bryant.  Both bring their assets to the table.  If you ask me, I’d want the ball in Kobe’s hands.  Why you might ask?  As good as LeBron is, and he’s damn good, he’s not on Kobe’s level, yet.  Kobe is a proven leader.  He has championship rings.  He’s consistent, and he’s incredible to watch.  As shown in this year’s past playoffs, LeBron is getting good really quickly, but he’s not on Kobe’s level yet.  He still has a year or two until he hits that status.  In these international competitions, you never know when another team might give the US a good run.  If that happens, I could see coach K giving Kobe the ball.  What’s the worst that can happen?  Kobe gets double teamed and he passes to LeBron?  That’s fine by me.