Tuesday, May 05, 2009
Thursday, April 30, 2009
If you read this blog back in its heyday when I posted more than once a month, you know of my fondness for JR Smith. I mean the boy had Spongebob slippers that were 5 sizes too small for him, he bought his first house in New Orleans only to be kicked out of the master bedroom by his parents, and he read Harold and the Purple Crayon. How could you not love him? (Don't answer that, Byron Scott.) He was the living embodiment of the term 'childlike insouciance.'
Now 5 years later, for better or for worse, he still is. Note the grandstanding in the pictures above. Then, note the score and the time. Classic JR. He really can't help himself. Just look at his face in the picture on the right! That was right after he made a reverse dunk. Some people thought he was gloating over his old coach Bryon Scott, but he's actually signaling to someone on his own bench -- George Karl maybe? Is it mature? Hell no. Is it kind of an asshole thing to do? For sure. Is it totally and 100% JR? Absolutely! And he's loving every second of it.
Herein lies the difference between JR Smith and Carmelo Anthony. When JR's out there swaggering and acting a fool in the 4th, that's really JR just being JR. He's not going to apologize for himself...rather George Karl will be out there crying, "We're humble!" til he's all red in the face. (George Karl does not get blue in the face. Trust me, it gets red.) Melo, on the other hand...he's supposed to be top dog. In his postgame tonight, he even said,
"It is my house. What do you want me to say? Chauncey moved in with me."As top dog, the dog should wag the tail, meaning the team should take on the characteristics of their supposed leader. In Melo's case, the tail wags the dog. Right after JR started jacking 3s and made that reverse dunk, guess who wanted to take part in the fun and started shooting 3s himself. Mr. Chauncey-moved-in-with-me. If you're gonna walk the walk (strut the swagger?), have the balls to back it up. But Melo, in classic one punch and run away/the weed was in my bag but it's not mine Melo form, doesn't want to be seen as a bad guy. He's tough, mind you. See the tatts? Remember the cornrows? Stop snitchin? He's real, damnit! But don't worry, marketers. He's just as likable as Lebron or DWade, and he respects the Hornets. Umm, no you don't. Your four shots with a huge smile on your face with less than 5 minutes left and a 20 point lead show you don't. How many shots did Chauncey take during that same time? Zero. The thing is, I don't give a shit about that. If you want to run up the score and the other team isn't stopping you, go right ahead. But don't fucking apologize or give some lame ass, halfhearted excuse afterward. It's fake and insulting and not JR.
Basically, JR Smith > Carmelo Anthony.
Chauncey Billups on JR in his postgame:
"JR's definitely a work in progress. He's young. He has the ability to be a perennial All Star. He's our 6th starter and he plays with a starter's swagger."
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
The one video out there of Jimmy Goldstein speaking and these guys talk over him as he patiently tries to answer their questions. Apparently, they went to the Oprah School of Journalism. Sigh. I guess I should just be glad they recognized him and got him on camera.
I've only done this once before, but I'm establishing another New Rule on NBA's Finest: Thou shalt not interrupt Jimmy Goldstein.
Apparently, this is what it says on his actual business card. In my mind, this is what it looks like. Some people want sparkly unicorns on their screens. I want Jimmy in all his regalia. Full Jimmy Goldstein post to follow.
Photo Source: Jimmy Goldstein via ESPN.com*
*Note: There was some confusion over the above graphic being Jimmy's actual business card. It's not. I made it based on the ESPN.com article I read, using the picture Jimmy provided for the article.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
I really don't need to add yet another magazine to my reading list, but when I see one with Will Demps on the cover...well really, what's a girl to do. This is the premiere issue of SET Magazine, the
vanity project brainchild of Mrs. Samari Rolle. According to the website:
"Our mission is to provide an intimate look at professional athletes lives as they endure hardships, overcome failures and celebrate their success in their perspective professions. We get up close to take an in-depth look at otherwise classified information."
Anyway, one of the NBA's "nice guys" - Antawn Jamison - is profiled in the mag along with his wife, Ione. Jamison has a squeaky clean reputation, has been married to the same woman for 5 years, and has kids born well after the first 9 months of marriage. On paper, this seems like a model marriage, especially by NBA standards, so I was curious to read what SET unclassified. I should've just stopped at the pictures of Will.
SET: What's the last romantic thing you did for each other?
Ione: Antawn is the best gift giver ever. Just Monday, he upgraded my diamond earrings [from two to three carats]. He went to Vegas, and I didn't even know he'd taken them with him.
SET: How does she spoil you?
Antawn: She gives me little gifts all the time. I really wanted this Louis Vuitton backpack and I couldn't find it anywhere, and she went and got it made for me.
Seriously, is this what romance boils down to - a bigger pair of diamond earrings and a Louis Vuitton backpack? Regardless of the state of the economy, what the fuck? Groupies trade sex for material goods. Shouldn't marriage/love/romance go beyond groupie love? What is so romantic about buying shit when one spouse's yearly salary - $16,360,090 for 2007-2008 - makes buying shit limitless? Before you say, "But that just shows they don't spend their money on all that all the time so it is romantic when they do," let me stop you, future much-younger-second-or-third-wife-of-some-rich-man. Let me also discount the notion that I think money is bad or diamond earrings are bad. But if your romance is driven by the same accumulation of shit that drives groupie love, how is your love any different?
Photo/Article Source: SET Magazine
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
The little, indie bookstores I usually go to don't carry ESPN the Mag, but I was waiting for someone at Barnes & Noble yesterday and this picture of Dwight Howard caught my eye. The cover story, "Above the Rim, Beyond the Arc" by Ric Bucher, is a really interesting revisit to the controversial-at-the-time NBA dress code and how opinions and behaviors have changed since then.
Beyond just their physical appearance, players have re-examined their lifestyles and perceptions. Bucher writes,
"Times have changed. Players not only have rethought what they wear, they've also rethought what they drive and eat. Gone are the days of a player hopping out of an Escalade with 24-inch spinning rims and tinted windows that rattle from the beat of the speaker box. Now the car is likely to be a dark-colored sedan or SUV with standard equipment...You can also find players circling the team buffet, casually mentioning the egg-white omelet and protein shake their personal chef whipped up for them that morning."
Players have also started thinking broadly and more long-term. Shane Battier says, "Guys want to be players and businessmen. And they understand you have to look the part. They're more sophisticated."
The most interesting part of the article was the key figure cited as, if not integral, definitely influential in effecting this change - and it's not Barack Obama. It's Hova himself, Jay-Z. We know Jay's influenced Lebron directly, but who knew he influenced the entire league indirectly. Bucher writes,
"And when Jay-Z turned in his Yankees cap and white T's for French-cuffed shirts and three-piece suits, tailors with NBA clientele noticed. 'Guys started buying a ton of woven dress shirts to wear with cuff links,' says designer Cary Mitchell. Teams steal defensive schemes; players eye what others are rocking. 'It's a copycat league,' says Mitchell."
Other owners better hope and pray Jay's influence is solely sartorial and won't affect where players want to play, ie Brooklyn. I think it's hilarious though that this designer calls the players out as copycats.
Another benefit to the dress code was that it bridged one divide between the Americans and the Europeans. Some of the Europeans felt mocked for their choice of clothing, which tends toward close-fitting, but now, that's the style 'round the league.
Time was when Warriors center Andris Biedrins thought he was getting dap when someone said, "That suit is tight." But that was "tight" as in "too small," not as in "That looks sharp." No more. Says Hawks center Zaza Pachulia: "Euro style used to be a bad thing. Now guys like it."
If only other conflicts could be so easily defused. Anyway, check out the story. It's really interesting. One other thing - the Blazers provide a personal chef to rookies whose moms aren't accompanying them to Portland. How cool is that!!!!
First, Shaq and Kobe reunited at the All Star Game. Then, it was Angelina and Aniston at the Oscars. Now, and with much less drama, Conan and Andy will be back together on NBC! Can Andy still be naked at 11:35pm or will that be Jimmy Fallon's domain now? *Shudder*
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
I just finished reading The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, which wasn't quite the old lady book I'd thought it would be...okay, maybe it was a little but I still really enjoyed it. Anyway, there's a line from Shakespeare in the book that I thought fitting for Sonics fans, particularly after the show Kevin Durant put on this weekend. It goes, "The bright day is done, and we are for the dark."
Didn't mean to start your morning off on such a somber note. Here's a video from the hilarious Paul Brogan to properly start the day. I don't know how I didn't see this before. Thanks @PhoenixSunsGirl for all the manic Twittering.
Seriously, how could David Stern take the NBA from a city that produces fans like this? Now look what the cat dragged in to Oklahoma City:
They're calling him Rumble the Bison. He can't even make a basket! So sad.
The best part of the ridiculous 40 point blowout came during halftime when they showed a clip of the Step Brothers spoof Baron Davis and Steve Nash made for Baron BoomDizzle's site, IBeatYou. Look at Steve's moves! Shaq's not the only one with some skills. Two words: Dance off.
Jay, if you don't know who the JabbaWockeeZ are, I'm shaving your head to reflect the old man you've become. I love PTI and Tony Kornheiser, but damn, sometimes the age/generation/technology/pop culture gap is ridiculous. Today he and Dan Le Batard talked about Twitter and Tony went off on the "twitter machine." It's called a computer. And I loved when he finally discovered Amy Winehouse...a year after Rehab blew up. I know ESPN wants to skew young, but forcing people to talk about topics they have absolutely no understanding of - I thought that's what they kept Skip Bayless around for.