May 29, 2009


Ok, I want everyone to realize something. We are truly witnessing (sorry Sully) something beyond special. And, after watching him eviscerate my Hawks, it still kind of stings to admit it, but this is a once in a lifetime occurrence that deserves 1,047 words from me, whether I like it or not.

LeBron Freaking James.

Never mind the triple double last night. Never mind the 17 points in the fourth. Never mind the ridiculous gut-check required to play that well down 3-1 in the conference finals. No, what we're seeing is bigger than a single game. His splits for the postseason? 36.1 points per game, 9.3 rebounds per game and 7.3 assists a game. Bill Simmons has what he calls the 42 Club (explained here), where you add up those three figures to determine postseason greatness (plus, the fact that Dirk (41.6, '06) blew his shot at the club with those finals solidifies the accuracy of the scale and captures the injustice done to my favorite 7-foot jump shooter. Great. Now I sound like Mark Stein).

Here's your 42 Club (I really wish I'd have thought of this first; damn you Simmons!) since the merger for reference:

Michael Jordan (6 times): 49.4 ('89); 50.7 ('90); 45.9 ('91); 46.5 ('92); 47.8 ('93); 43.8 ('97)
Shaquille O'Neal (4X): 43.6 ('98); 49.2 ('00); 49.0 ('01); 43.9 ('02)
Larry Bird (4X): 42.0 ('81); 44.4 ('84); 43.4 ('86); 44.2 ('87)
Moses Malone (2X): 43.0 ('81); 43.3 ('83)
Magic Johnson (2X): 43.8 ('86); 42.5 ('91)
Karl Malone (2X): 43.0 ('92); 42.9 ('94)
Hakeem Olajuwon (2X): 44.2 ('94); 47.8 ('95)
Tim Duncan (2X): 42.7 ('01); 45.4 ('03)
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1X): 47.1 ('80)
Charles Barkley (1X): 44.5 ('93)
Kobe Bryant (1X): 42.8 ('01)
Allen Iverson (1X): 43.7 ('01)
Kevin Garnett (1X): 44.0 ('04)
LeBron James (1X): 44.7 ('06)

Do some quick math on the numbers above for Mr. James (and he has earned the Mr.) and you can see that not only are we talking about a legendary run, but an entrant into the hallowed air of the 50 Club. Current occupants? Michael Jeffery Jordan, when he officially changed his name to Michael Freaking Jordan in 1990. He threw up a 36.7 ppg, 7.2 rpg, and 6.8 apg, clocking him in at 50.7...and LeBron is currently pacing at 52.7.


Dear God.

But the big rub here is Michael didn't get his first ring until a year later...but what that postseason flurry did do is something even more important: it firmly established him as a cut above his peers (Barkley, Malone, Robinson, Drexler), and it announced that he was here to replace to old guard (Dumars, Thomas, Bird, Magic). And this is where LeBron stands. Whether or not he wins the ring now or next year is of little importance in the larger scheme of things. Maybe this is the summer where Kobe vaults himself into the top-10 players ever discussion by winning a ring where he wasn't the second banana (and if you don't think he was the sidekick during those first three titles, you're nuts). Maybe this is the summer where I get to be all teary eyed because I get to watch my boy Melo (the should-have-been ROY over LeBron way back when) not only grow up, but establish himself as a champion. Maybe this is the summer where Dwight Howard proves that you don't need silly things like 'post offense besides tip-ins and open dunks' to be a successful big man.

Maybe this is another year where LeBron falls short. Maybe his indomitable will is not enough to overcome Stan Van Gundy/Ron Jeremy. Maybe he runs out of gas here, I mean, he has played over 550 NBA games already. Maybe he's playing on fumes, and maybe these Delonte West and Mo Williams threes stop falling, and he is left out there truly alone. Maybe these Cavs survive the Magic, but are so winded that they can't manage to finish in the Finals.

That's all on the table, and it's all ok.

Because, with his performance so far (52.7!!!), he's pulled a 1990 Jordan on the Association. He has officially announced to the older guard (Duncan, O'Neal, Garnett, MAMBA) that he has arrived to replace them...and put his peers (Howard, Anthony, Paul, Wade) on notice that they are his peers in age only; he has come and will be placing a stranglehold on the NBA for the foreseeable future. Ironically, the player who is to blame for this explosion is the same player who has the most to lose by his rise.

Fellow Most Valuable Puppet Kobe Bryant brought this on himself, and on all of the rest of the Association through his participation in the Redeem team last summer. Not only did he remind LeBron that there was a plateau he had yet to reach (see: last possessions, Gold Medal game), but he gave him insight into the indomitable work ethic that pushes Kobe past the miles on his body and the years in the Association. He got to see first hand how hard this cat works, both offensively and defensively every day for 3 months. That would have an impact on anyone, especially anyone who has had designs on being the best player ever, who captured his first SI cover at 16, who has had consistent questions about his dedication to the game. So, members of his class, you know who to thank when you're compared to Gary Payton, Charles Barkley and Karl Malone after you know, that 'great career, no rings' group that these guys belong to because they happened to be born in the wrong years: Mr. Kobe Bean Bryant.

But, maybe I'm wrong.

Maybe he wills the Cavs past the Magic this year, eviscerates whoever they play in the Finals, becomes a god in Cleveland, never leaves, captures 6 MVPs (three in a row at a time, because people get tired of voting for him (see Malone, Karl) and give it to someone less deserving), puts the stranglehold on the league NOW as opposed to a year from now, and we get to watch Dwayne Wade complete his reenactment of Penny Hardaway's career sooner than expected, because LeBron stole his will to compete. Because it is going to happen. It's all a matter of when.

May 11, 2009


Well, at least THAT'S over. LeBron 'General Sherman' James is done with his second march through the fair city of Atlanta. At least we put up a fight. I guess, in the grand coronation of King James, this makes me and the rest of the city a collective
Full season recap coming this week.

Game 4. Q1,

Didn't look half bad out there...a lot of hustle on the defensive end and the, it doesn't hurt that LBJ isn't hitting early. Maybe we can pull one out, make this a competitive game.

Big shout out to Texas Roto for putting smiles on the Palmer family faces tonight, as we wind down my career of having a sibling in college. Yeah, everything is about me.


If you go to ESPN's homepage, today's SportsNation poll is a loaded question: Would you want a player who has admitted to taking PEDs on your favorite team? The options were: yes, yes, but only if they produced, and no.

According to ESPN, after 35,000 votes, 49% said no.

Now look, I'm not saying that all 17,500 who said no were liars, but a safe bet is that about 17,000 were lying. If you were to tell residents of Missouri (53% no) that Pujhols is going to admit to using PEDs, they would demand that he be traded or released? Or, that if you told residents of Kansas City (see Mizzou numbers) that a PED-admitting Alex Rodriguez was coming to play for them, that they would fight against him joining their Royals.

Buncha freakin' holier-than-thou liars. Headed to watch my little brother graduate, get some food with the fam. Follow along

Yeah, I plugged my twitter again. Sue me.

Seriously, try it. You'll get a black and red Atlanta Braves hat, a signed Wayne Gretzkey Kings Jersey, and my winnings from the Drinking Olymipics in Jamaica, 2005.

May 7, 2009


When this story broke, I decided I wasn't going to waste any brain space or blog space on it. That it was beneath me for consideration, and that anything that I said would have either already been said by a talking head, or was going to be. But, Nez has been requesting that I write something about baseball. So here we go. I guess.

Manny Ramirez tested positive for steroids.

Wait, should I be upset? Should I be shocked? It's gotten to the point that I just assume that every player from 1990 until, let's say two years from now, used steroids to improve their on-field performance. And don't get me started on the use of uppers or 'greenies' by pitchers on game day. That went on from the invention of the damn things until they were banned (wink, wink, nudge, nudge) recently by the MLB.

I get to cheer for a team that hasn't had anyone (major) fall in the recent steroid reveals, but I wouldn't put it past anyone I've cheered for here. Whether it is a center fielder who dropped off significantly, and was begging to make a roster earlier this year, or a pitcher who annually won about 14 games winning 24 in 1996, or a third baseman who averaged 33 home runs a year peeling off 45 dingers in 1999, no one is innocent these days. I refuse to be shocked anymore, and I refuse to think too much about it either.

Hey Nez, do you think the fact that we are 6 weeks into the season, and the Artist formally known as Big Papi is batting .229, with .333 slugging is a giant smoking gun?

There, your freaking MLB post. I feel dirty.

May 5, 2009

Almost There...Here...Whatever...

3 days until my return to New York...and I am going to celebrate by sharing a couple of Hawks blogs with all my fans (Nez, Biggs, and occasionally Sully). Here ya go!

The links are also on the sidebar.

And the best preview note of the three blogs belongs to Peachtree Hoops:

Just a heads up to Anderson Varejao. Zaza Pachulia plays as cheap, dirty, and tough as you. Except he is totally fine with punching someone in the face.



All I wanted was to get out of the first round. And it looks like that's all I'm going to get.

OLASB 2nd Round Predictions

Lakers over Rockets in 6

Cavs over Hawks in 5

Magic over Celtics in 5

Denver over Dallas in 7

May 4, 2009


For the first time in a VERY long time, I got to go to a playoff basketball game Sunday. Before now, I either didn't have tickets (last year), lived in a city that ALSO never made the playoffs (New York) or we didn't make the playoffs (every year except for New York and last year). So, when the opportunity arose for me to attend a Hawks playoff game, I jumped at it.

Not only did I get to see a fun (albeit, not-too-dramatic game), but I found out that Atlanta sports teams too have fans, that we have developed a legitimate home court advantage that helps out our players, that we have intelligent enough fans to collectively scream 'no' when Josh Smith is lining up a three-pointer. That last thing is not a joke, that happened.

I got caught up in it. I booed D-Wade, I cheered Joe Johnson (6-8 from 3?), I was confused when people chanted 'Zaza'. Bottom line, I loved every second. I got to see Atlanta win a seven game series for the first time since 1970. I got to see a not-so-loyal fanbase get rewarded.

And now I get to see us get creamed by the (checks watch) soon to be named MVP.

Where amazing happens.

May 1, 2009

Go Time

No jokes. No stunts. No elaborate anti-jinxes.

Just good, controlled, smart basketball tonight. There is no reason that the better team shouldn't leave Miami a winner.


Josh Smith needs to play within himself.

Time to end this in six, and get ready for the Cavs.

But, without looking past the task at hand.

This first round of the playoffs have left me a wreck. From Ray-Ray scoring 51 points in 58 minutes last night to J.J. Reddick jumping off of milk boxes and filling the void to eliminate the Sixers ALSO last night, I just know my heart can't take a Game 7 back in Atlanta on Sunday.

No Al. No Marvin. No excuses...we're the better team. Time to go show the world.