Archives For Basketball

These Celtics

May 11, 2011 — Leave a comment

It is not over yet, but it is close. Here is a good roundup on these Celtics, with questions…(my answers in brackets)

1. With one title in two Finals trips in this era, Celtics fans should feel …

A. Happy
B. Satisfied (Win a championship vs Lakers…amazing…then loose to the Lakers…bumps me down to satisfied)
C. Unsatisfied
D. Unhappy
E. [Your description here]

2. The Kendrick Perkins trade has been much-maligned. The criticism is …

A. Right on point (however, Perkins was right back on the injury list when he went to OKC)
B. Missing the point
C. Overstated
D. Understated
E. [Your description here]

3. When Boston’s season ends, it will be time for Danny Ainge to …

A. Bring everyone back
B. Tweak the roster
C. Make a major move
D. Start over
E. [Your prescription here] (It is either C or D. They are only getting older and the other teams are getting better, faster, and younger. Miami will only be better next year)

4. Rajon Rondo, age 25, is the only Celtics star under 33. He is also …

A. The foundation for a new era of Celtics title contention
B. A franchise player but not enough (He can run the show, but he can’t run the show…in terms of scoring)
C. A keeper, but only a good piece, not a franchise player
D. The guy who can bring Boston back the most in a trade
E. [Your description here]

5. What is your favorite memory from this era of Celtics basketball?

Kevin Garnett literally loosing his mind, throwing back his head, and yelling “Anything is possible!” I thought the vein in his neck was going to burst resulting in him immediately dying on the court. The next day headline reads: “Garnett dies from elevated-emotion”

Celtic’s fans where do you stand?

Gus Johnson

April 2, 2011 — Leave a comment

Every year during March Madness I have to post something on Gus Johnson. I can’t believe I missed the NY Times article on him. It says:

Johnson took his personality from his father, his athleticism from his mother and his delivery from her father, a preacher. In hindsight, it was a broadcasting blend.

This is reflected in his style, which Johnson described as: “Emotional. Passionate. Noncritical. Fair. A little crazy. A lot crazy. A little wild.” For years, he tried to sound witty, like ESPN anchors, or let the pictures speak for themselves. Yet his best success came when he acted like himself.

Also Jim Rome did an interview with him. Rome asked Johnson whether he had anything special for Fredette “locked and loaded yet.” The announcer said he’s been thinking about it, but prefers his words to come organically. Talking about the process of coming up with what he says in games, he said:

I don’t like to write a whole bunch of stuff down. … I just want it to come out. I think the most important part is to match the rhythm and the sound of the game.

He also said this about the game:

I don’t want to be the story, to be honest. I want to be a part of the story. I want to be a part of this piece—this beautiful piece, which is a combination of the coaches and the players, and the sound of the game and the rhythm of the game, and then my voice being a part of that musical piece that lays on top, and it’s able to accentuate crescendo moments…


Here are highlights of dunk contest. Remember he is 5’10”.



March 29, 2011 — Leave a comment

Great article on Butler (actually on Matt Howard) by Rick Reilly. Here is how he begins:

Butler is not to be trusted in this Final Four. It pretends to be a guppy but has a piranha’s appetite. Underdog? Please. Butler is the favorite now, and a lot of us know it. Whatever you do, don’t pet it.

Its cover is blown after last year’s Final Four. We all know how it works. Butler wants you to think it’s something it’s not. Take its heart, senior forward Matt Howard, who looks more like a geeky band-camp RA than a possible NBA first rounder. If Ichabod Crane played hoops, he’d look like this. He’s 93 percent elbow and the rest Adam’s apple. He’s got so many juts, you could hang tinsel off him.

He’s the Academic All-American of the Year in Division I. He’s so nerdy, you look at him and think, “What’s the worst he’s going to do to us? Reprogram our iPhones to Chinese?”

Look at those socks. They lost their elastic years ago. And those sad shoes! If those shoes were your couch, it’d be in the alley now.

“He has six pairs of brand-new shoes in his locker,” teammate Shelvin Mack says. “But he won’t wear them! He just keeps wearing those ratty old ones.”

And what’s that on his head? Arugula?

Read the rest HERE.

Michael Wilbon has a convincing article about how the NCAA tournament used to be better. He argues it is still exciting, the players are simply not as good. They have all migrated to the NBA.

Don’t get me wrong, the tournament might be as compelling as ever if we’re judging it by the amount of drama produced. The conditions certainly exist to make it so. Take the top eight teams and the bottom four teams out of the discussion for a second, and that leaves 56 teams that are for the most part indistinguishable.

While that could very well make for overtimes and buzzer-beaters, a slew of upsets and charming Cinderella stories, it doesn’t mean that the quality of play is what it used to be. There’s not a team in the tournament as good as Memphis was three years ago. Fortunately for the carnival barkers, 80 percent of the folks in the office pool don’t know the difference between exciting and good.

Jay Bilas, the ESPN basketball analyst and Final Four veteran from his playing days at Duke, spoke to this so eloquently in a conversation we had in Bristol on Sunday, then more extensively with Tony Kornheiser and me on “PTI” Monday afternoon. Bilas pointed out that two of the primary stars of this NBA season, presumptive MVP Derrick Rose and double-double machine Kevin Love, would be seniors at Memphis and UCLA, respectively, in another time and place. And Bilas says there are about 60 NBA players who left college with eligibility.


At 5’11” Jacob Tucker’s Dunk Video has gone viral. The guard from Division III Illinois College in Jacksonville, Ill., wanted to make a case for an invitation to the NCAA dunk contest at the Final Four in Houston.  ESPN reports. Watch video below.