Sunday, November 29, 2009

Jennings Starting To Slide A Bit

Brandon Jennnings has taken the NBA by storm so far. When he went off for 55 points, the media acclaim started. He appeared on PTI, media informed the world on the rook and ESPN changed the national TV schedule just to get the young buck on national TV. As solid as Jennings is, his game, specifically his offensive efficiency, is declining of late. Over the last five games, Jennings shot 28-87 from the field. That doesn't mesh well with Bucks wins either, they've gone 1-4 in the their last five games.

Jennings hasn't hit the rookie wall, but he's built a piece of the wall up. His performance on the road isn't as strong as his work at home. That's something he's got to change. His play in their recent home stand is better than his road labor, when talking about scoring. That's the only part of his game that isn't as strong. His assist numbers have fluctuated recently, but, when I watch the Bucks, I see that Jennings is doing his part. He gets the team into the right sets, make smart plays and doesn't usually force up shots.

I saw him force a shot in last nights tough loss against the Magic. He looked frustrated. Coach Skiles will have to work with him on that. It's only because he's a rookie, it doesn't worry me. I play basketball and I've done the same thing. If you aren't aware, he and Jennings look over game film and critique his game. Jennings certainly has the right teachers around him.

Another thing Jennings hasn't done is play a great game against an elite team. He had his first taste of the Magic last night. His game wasn't anything special, but, he'll have two more chances very soon. Two important games for my impression on his early year play will be December 8th at Boston and December 16th against the Lakers. The first one of these two games will have more meaning to me because it's on the road. If Jennings can play great against one of the best teams in the league, on the road as a rookie, I'll get a lot closer to the Jennings bandwagon. The Lakers game will be another key additional game to watch and evaluate, but they'll be at home and the Lakers starting point guard, Derek Fisher, should have a lot more trouble with Jennings than Rajon Rondo will. Sorry Fish, you're not as quick as you used to be and that wasn't too fast to begin with (still love you Fisher).

So far, given the choice, Jennings is the easy pick for Rookie of the Year. But, he's got many things to improve upon. If he can sustain his play against bad competition and translate it to play against the best, he'll win the ROY, easy. Things like that are much easier said than done, resiliency is the key.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Shoe of The Week: Air Jordan Retro XI Space Jam


Everyone seems to love these classic Jordans. They are clean, simple and look like great shoes to ball in. They are going to be released in time for Christmas and cost $175.

I don't know about that price tag, but they're versatile shoes that go with anything and should perform well. If you're looking for a pretty expensive, but nice shoe for the holidays, here you go.

Sneaker News has lots of detailed photos of these. Gives you an even better look.

What shoes do you want or are you getting for the holidays?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Video: Ron Artest on Jimmy Kimmel

I'll keep it simple here: Ron Artest makes for great television:






Thanks, Fanhouse.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Talk Around the Hardwood

About time I do a link post..

  • Project Spurs. Antonio Daniels Back In Silver & Black?
  • YouTube. KG tosses in a 75-foot shot. Who cares that it didn't count! Amazing.
  • LA Times. Pau says he'll be back tonight!
  • Slam Online. Miami, along with New York, are said to interested in AI.
  • North Station Sports. The C's have been playing OK ball of late, but it's good enough to beat the Warriors.
  • Dime Mag. CP3 won't be wearing one yet, but the Hornets have new Mardi Gras jerseys.
  • Best Player on the Planet. Should the Lakers make this trade?
  • Nets Are Scorching. That blog may not have a real legit name right now, but CDR isn't taking an 0-12 record lightly.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

How Bennett-Ball Is Played: Sonicsgate, A Review

I finally got around to seeing the Sonicsgate documentary yesterday. It details how Seattle was duped out of their team as a new ownership group lied and took the team to Oklahoma City. I loved it, it was so great, well done. And showed how bad Clay Bennett is.

I knew that there were some bad feelings left in Seattle, but never knew they were so extensive. David Stern and the NBA do not look good in this film. Their capitalistic mindset was exposed so that it made me think of a fine line the NBA might be crossing: is the league trying to preserve the integrity of the game for both players and fans, or only worrying about the checks at the end of the day? That's a question I'd love to ask David Stern. If you have any thoughts on that, chime in.

The NBA has been doing a decent job of maintaining the quality of the game, but quality could be more of a focus. As a fan who doesn't care about the money they're trying to make, I want to see the best basketball, of course. I'm not at all disappointed by the action so far this season, but I don't want to see teams taken away for the same reasons the Sonics left. Why isn't more time given for new facility funding?

Could it be that owners of sports teams in general care only about what goes in their pockets and therefore threaten cities with leaving, unless their demands are met? Ask fans of any major sports.

Everyone has a price, apparently. Forget the game!

The makers of this movie deserve some kind of a special basketball Oscar. They opened my eyes to the true evil that is Clay Bennett and the emotion and hardship that tore through Seattle as this happened.

You MUST watch it if you haven't yet. Check out Sonicsgate.org!

Here's a trailer:

Friday, November 13, 2009

LeBron Says Players Should Give Up No. 23; James Making Switch To No. 6

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LeBron James, pretty much the best player in the NBA right now.

But not the best in history. And he knows that.

So with his No. 23, which he has been wearing since way back in his high school days, is making a switch to the No. Six.

Why?

James is giving his respect to the best basketball player in NBA history: Michael Jordan. After swishing 34 points on the Heat last night in a 111-104 win, Jordan was sitting there watching the young man play.

So LeBron says that every player who is currently wearing the No. 23, they should switch. But that is going to be tough, with twelve other players in the league already having the number, guys including Kevin Martin and Martell Webster.

"I just think what Michael Jordan has done for the game has to be recognized some way soon. There would be no LeBron James, no Kobe Bryant, no Dwayne Wade if there wasn't Michael Jordan first," says James.

He contined, "He can't get the logo [Hall of Famer Jerry West's silhouette adorns the NBA's logo], and if he can't, something has to be done. I feel like no NBA player should wear 23. I'm starting a petition, and I've got to get everyone in the NBA to sign it. Now, if I'm not going to wear No. 23, then nobody else should be able to wear it."

James did not always used to wear No. 23.

He also used to wear No. 45 a few years ago, before switching back instantly.

"If you see 23, you think about Michael Jordan," James told the Plain Dealer. "You see game-winning shots, you think about Michael Jordan; you see guys fly through the air, you think about Michael Jordan; you see fly kicks, you think about Michael Jordan. He did so much, it has to be recognized, and not just by putting him in the Hall of Fame."

James has until March 5 to change his number. LeBron is a doing a good thing right now.

Let's hope he can do some more good things in the future.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Miami: A 2010 Destination for LeBron?

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As John Hollinger of ESPN said, the Miami Heat are for real this season. But next year, they'll be beyond real, and that's if they have a shot at signing LeBron James in the 2010 "magical" Free Agency.

Dwayne Wade and LeBron, how better can it get?

But you never know, there's a big chance of him resigning back with the Cavs. But I think he'll only resign with the team is if the Cavs can be more dominant then they were a year ago, but then ending up being trampled by the Magic as if they were the Kings.

But now, the Cavs look solid, and there may be a strong chance of him going back. But what if the Cavs struggle? I mean, look, they were like this at the starting of last year—unstoppable. And then after that, they failed in the playoffs.

If they end up like that, sorry Cleveland, but more bad news for your city's sports history. The Browns lose Braylon Edwards and the Cavs lose LeBron James.

Although there may be other teams going for LeBron, like a no-brainer—the Knicks. But James may want a team that can actually be a playoff contender. If the Knicks have a solid group of players on their roster in the 2010 offseason, the Knicks may be an option.

And you never, other teams might come up that you'll never expect. I mean, the Hornets have not gone off to such a good start, they could use him. Bobcats? Pacers? There's a lot. Heck, maybe even Oklahoma City with a pair of 'Bron and Durant.

But what about the Heat, like I said before? The Heat can be the best option out of all, unless if you were to put the Celtics or the Lakers in the picture—which will likely not happen. But I know, Dwayne Wade and LeBron? Are you kidding me?

How can they share the ball? They might turn into Allen Iverson ball-hoggers with themselves as teammates. I mean, you had A.I. and Carmelo Anthony on the Nuggets not too long ago, but it didn't go along too well.

But these guys aren't A.I. Not even close.

If James were to come to Miami, the depth chart may look like this, and it includes the roster from the 2009-10 season entering the 2010-11 season:

PG: Mario Chalmers
SG: Dwayne Wade
SF: LeBron James/Michael Beasley
PF: Udonis Haslem
C: Jermaine O'Neal

But hey, you never know, Beasley may complain and the guy's got too much talent to be a backup, even if it is LeBron. Just taking a strong guess here, but what if the Heat were to do this with James:

PG: Dwayne Wade
SG: LeBron James
SF: Michael Beasley
PF: Udonis Haslem
C: Jermaine O'Neal

I can take disagreements, but if that's good, fine with me. If you don't like that, fine with me. And if James were to land in Miami, I really don't think either if the depth chart were to end up like that, but it may be possible.

James and Wade together can be the ultimate one-two punch. If these two guys team up, oh man, it's not going to look good for the opponents. And James can finally get the ring he's been dying for while Wade will earn ring number two.

But will James actually land on a team like the Heat?

Probably not, but there have been surprises before in the NBA offseason, so I wouldn't be that surprised if this were to happen.

So answer this: Is Miami a fit for LeBron?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Is It Possible For Stephen Jackson To Be Traded?

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Stephen Jackson has been trying to get out of Golden State for so long. He wants to be traded just that badly. All Jackson has wanted to do is be traded. But now, I guess he can finally get his wish.

According to Chad Ford of ESPN.com, Jackson can get a massive pay cut, and a buyout, to leave the Warriors and play with a team. But not any team. Jackson wants a team that has a shot at the playoffs, no, larger than that.

A contender for the Finals.

Well, you won't be seeing the Celtics or Lakers in your picture, but rumors were sparking up of him going to the Denver Nuggets. The Warriors do want to trade Jackson, believe me. I mean, there's no point giving the guy a $27M contract.

Here's what Chad Ford says:

"The collective bargaining agreement allows a player and team to negotiate a buyout that reduce the compensation owed to the player. While the union doesn't love buyouts, they have been supportive in the past when players have sought them."
And if Jackson speaks to the Warriors about his extension and taking the buyout, things can be great for 2010. Jackson can receive his money for this year, and after the 2009-10 season, he can move on to the 2010 Free Agent Class filled with such superstars like Dwayne Wade, LeBron James, and Yao Ming.

But it is tough for all of this to happen, and I hope Jackson realizes that. No one wants to take a mistake of taking in Jackson who's up to no trouble like the Pacers and Warriors did. But I understand why Jackson is doing this.

I mean, seriously, playing for the Warriors is like playing for the Rams, Lions, or the Buccaneers of the NFL. Or being the Nationals of the MLB. They just lost to the Kings by more than ten points.

What else can you expect, the Warriors are terrible.

Jackson can get out of this.

But he's going to have to be smart about this.

But yet, when was Jackson ever smart?

Video: Andre Iguodala Nasty Reverse Dunk

Look out below this is NASTY:

So, There's 13 Games Tonight

That means that it's a good night for you to turn on the tube and catch some hoops. Though I'm really tempted to highlight the Pacers-Warriors game as the one to watch, the highlights of tonight should include Celtics-Jazz (maybe), Magic-Cavs and Spurs-Mavs.

I will be tweeting about some of the action I see. Check it out and follow me. While most every fan around the world will be left crying without Joel Anthony playing tonight, I myself am looking forward to seeing 26 teams in action all through the night!

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Shoe of The Week: Nike Trainer 1 Manny Pacquiao Part III


I've been a fan of this series of shoes from Nike. Past versions have been featured here in the past and this version's lovely also. Don't know much about Pacquiao honestly, but damn does Nike know how to make his shoes.

These are expected to be released around the time of Pacquiao's next match. Kix and the City predicts that they'll be a limited edition, which is too bad. I'd like them to be a full on release. They are that nice.

Keep your eyes out for these and tell me what shoes have recently caught your eyes in the comments.

The Hawks Took It To The Nuggets Last Night

The Atlanta Hawks played like they should for the most part in last nights impressive 125-100 win over the Nuggets. They hustled on defense, didn't get too stagnant in their offensive sets and played a close to perfect first quarter. It was very refreshing. It's hard to come up with excuses for the poor performance when you're Denver, both teams were in the 2nd night of a back-to-back, they just didn't have any strong flow on either end of the floor.

If Mike Woodson can get Josh Smith to play the way he did last night, I could become all right with him as a coach. Smith was not settling last night and he filled up the stat sheet, as usual. The important thing was that he took only one jump shot, which was wide open and he made it. He should only take at most three in a game. That's not his strong suit, he showed what is: taking slower guys off the dribble and scoring at the basket or getting to the free throw line (where he was solid, 6-8). To sum that up, play like that all the time Josh Smith!

Atlanta always gets on my nerves because there's no continuity (Clyde Fraizer voice) in their offense. It's usually just a clear out for whoever happens to get the ball. Last night there was clearly more movement and the only people who seemed to get isolation plays were Johnson and Crawford. Those are the only two who should ever get clear outs on offense. When the Hawks play together, they've got the personnel to perform like they did here on a consistent basis.

Please save this game tape Woodson. When the Hawks take a game and make it ugly again, show them this and tell them to get back to it. That should be Atlanta Hawks basketball!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Talk Around the Hardwood

Wednesday means it's link time!

  • Deadspin. Who knew people would want Tyler Hansbrough for a car ad? WOW.
  • How To Watch Sports. Is LeBron a spitting image of KG?
  • North Station Sports. Post game analysis of last nights Celtics-Sixers game written by yours truly.
  • Slam Online. Are the new rims causing an increase in scoring this season?
  • Peachtree Hoops. I'm amazed that the Hawks beat the Blazers in Portland, but this shows how they did it.
  • Dueling Couches. Warning: don't click that link if you're a Clipper fan. If you're not, click and laugh your ass off!
  • The No-Look Pass. The TNLP crew look at the Donaghy book excerpts and give their thoughts on them.
  • Boston Hearld. Some more insights on that little Rondo-Paul argument.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Pacific Division Previews Recap

Golden State Warriors: Golden State of Mind
Los Angeles Clippers: Clips Nation