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When I have frequent arguments with friends about why basketball is better than hockey or baseball, it always comes down to one true point on my side.  Basketball is entertainment.  After taking in the Pistons/Knicks game last night in Detroit, my love for this league shot up higher than it ever was before.  As we all know, Mr. Isiah Thomas has been booed…booed …and booed some more.  He’s booed at home in New York and booed on the road in New York.  Until last night.  After I ran to my seat after getting soaked in the gross Auburn Hills rain, I was right in time for the introductions (or the best part of basketball—my thoughts at least).  You had your Eddy Curry’s, your Starbury’s…and of course…we all came to hear the reaction of Zeke himself.  To my thoughts, the Piston gang of fans cheered this guy as if he was still starting at PG for the Bad Boys.  This guy can assault an employee, become a losing/terrible coach, yet all these fans can remember is how amazing of a leader he once was for the boys in red, white and blue.  I was a little shocked at the reaction, until I found myself standing and clapping like everyone else. 

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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?

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It appears that the New York Knicks will likely ink old timer, veteran, grampa (whatever you want to call him) Allan Houston.  After being out of the league for quite a while now due to injuries, Houston will attempt a comeback with the team he last played with.  It wasn’t thaaaaat long ago that Houston was tearing up the courts in New York.  He established himself as one of the purest shooters in the game during his prime.  Although long out of his prime, Houston brings a lot of veteran leadership to the table that is greatly needed in the big apple.  I still remember when Houston played for Detroit.  He formed an amazing backcourt with non other than current Pistons President and legend, Joe Dumars.  Together, those two knocked down every shot.  Unfortunately, the Pistons didn’t have much success during those years and are much better off nowadays.  For Houston, coming back to the Knicks gives him a chance to finish his career on the court, rather than finishing due to causes out of his control.  It really is a win-win situation for Houston and the Knicks.  Hopefully the old man will last.

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I just browsed by this minor topic.  Some of the comments people posted were pretty funny though, so I suggest you take a look HERE.

My personal thought….The guy is a bum.  He deserves nothing!

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What is with NBA players getting robbed these days?  This is pretty scary stuff.  It makes logical sense.  These guys are extremely wealthy.  The odds are, they keep a lot of cash on hand, and apparently not very securely.  They seem like targets.  It’s unfortunate, but couldn’t you see it happening again?  Think about when someone like LeBron goes out to a club.  He’s probably packing some serious cash in his pockets.  Then again, LeBron probably has security twice his size.  But an NBA player on a lesser scale, such as Eddy Curry is a probable target.  These guys are making millions upon million of dollars, and they are not taking the proper measures to secure it.  What would it cost to have a body guard walk around with you, or even put a security alarm system in your house, or even cameras for crying out loud. I haven’t heard of the police in Chicago catching these guys, or any leads, so they just might get away with the whole scam.  The big losers are Curry and his family.  That’s a pretty traumatizing experience.  Hopefully other players and celebrities learn from these unfortunate incidents.

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The latest rumour going around is that the New York Knicks could trade David Lee to the Sacramento Kings for non other than Ron Artest. Yes….Ron Artest! Don’t get me wrong, I’m actually a very big fan of Artest’s game. He’s a very solid all-around player who can really add that final piece to the puzzle for any team. In this situation, though, is Artest a good influence on the Knicks? What I’m trying to get at is that New York could become home to the new Bad Boys of the 2007-2008 season. Pairing newly acquired Zach Randolph with Artest creates one of the scariest front courts in the game, let alone one of the scariest duos outside the arena. I’m sure if this trade goes down that the Knicks will try and keep Randolph and Artest in separate rooms on the road, and make sure they don’t end up touring around the visiting cities together. If they do, who knows what could happen? These guys are straight up bad asses. They would give the team a physical edge, but the Knicks will need to do some investing in their bench with the amount of suspension between these two. Both of these guys are considered gambles, regardless of what team they play on. I’m sure Isiah Thomas is thinking more basketball. Seriously, a front court of Zach Randolph, Ron Artest and Eddy Curry is pretty powerful and has the potential to go places. And I’m not just talking jail. Think about it.

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Michael and Scotty, Stockton and Malone…Randolph and Artest? Hmmm…

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It seems like Isiah Thomas and the New York Knicks had a productive draft. Acquiring Zach Randolph is truly a gamble. But if you’re going to gamble, why not with a guy that can average 20 and 10? That sounds like solid numbers to bring into a team. It seems like an even better deal because that they get to part with Stevie Franchise ( I still can’t even remember how he earned that nickname). His massive contract is now not a barrier to acquiring great talent. The big problem is, if Randolph was getting into all this trouble in Portland, I couldn’t even imagine what the roads of NYC hold for the forward. The Knicks are going to have to have a serious sit-down with him and set the ground rules. Losing Channing Frye’s potential probably won’t be as visible as he’s now playing alongside a team stocked with forwards. His 9.5 points and 5.5 rebound averages are likely to go down, as he’ll be competing for playing time with LaMarcus Aldridge, Travis Outlaw, and Darius Miles to name a few. Overall, I really think the Knicks got the better of the deal. The Knicks could potentially have a very strong starting frontline with Eddy Curry and Randolph (although they’re a weak defensive pair). I expect to see the Knicks as one of the higher scoring offenses this season if Starbury is willing to pass the ball. I’m just hoping Randolph spends his time on the basketball court, instead of the other court we’re all fearing he’ll be visiting pretty soon.

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The Knicks must be jumping for joy now that Steve Francis is gone!

-Check out the Video page of a video I found of Zach Randolph paying a visit to a die-hard fan.  Looks like the little guy’s going to have to move some of the furniture around…