Wednesday, May 20, 2009

12 comments Ten Things I Think I Think Peter King Has Not Thought Of: NBA Playoffs and Troublemaker Edition

Today I have an excess of links I want to comment on again. Of course I may have nothing to discuss tomorrow but that is the risk you take when you clean all of your bookmarked articles out in one day. Now that the Clippers have the #1 pick, that Zach Randolph trade really isn't looking that great right now, of course as inept as they generally are, they had no way of knowing they would get the #1 pick.

1. Scoop Jackson and JemeHill, the "experts" at ESPN on the NBA (because they are minorities they are the experts?) want to comment on/avoid a few questions before the Conference Finals (though I know they started last night, I did not post this until today).

Question: Cleveland went 8-0 in the first two rounds. Denver is outscoring its opponents by an average of 16.0 points per game, the best mark ever through 10 playoff games. Which team is playing better right now?

Scoop Jackson: That's a helluva question. I guess the best way to tackle it is to ask, "If Denver and Cleveland were playing in the Finals right now, who would win?"

No, actually that is quite possibly not the best way to tackle the question, by answering a different question. Who is playing better now? It's a simple question. Don't try to guess who would win if the teams played, but who is playing better now. As great as Denver is playing, the correct answer is Cleveland because LeBron James is on a mission and has a great supporting cast built around his talents.

And here's my thing: LeBron and Co. have been making life very difficult for teams, especially on the defensive end, but could they shut the Nuggets down? Could they limit what the Nuggets do offensively?

So far Scoop has changed the question of who is playing better and followed it up with two other questions. Maybe they should ask someone else these questions to get an answer.

But the speed with which the Nuggets have been scoring -- I don't know -- if I'm Cavs coach Mike Brown, how do I prepare my team for that? So I'll say this: Cleveland may be playing better ball right now, but I'm more impressed with Denver.

So Cleveland is the answer but if the question was asked about "who he was more impressed with" (which it was not and Scoop answered it that way for no particular reason) it would be Denver? I feel like I am watching Celebrity Jeopardy on SNL.

We're splitting hairs here. But ultimately, I'm a little more impressed with Denver, because the Nuggets' success and dominance is a complete surprise.

And JemeHill counters his answer with more nonsense. Rather than answering the original question, she answers who she is most impressed with as well. I am also not sure how the #2 seed in the West having success in the playoffs is a surprise at this point.

Scoop Jackson:Jemele, you going to do the Whitney Houston imitation, or should I? Hell to the naw!...Even their leader called them "bipolar" at times. TNT's Kenny Smith made the strongest statement about this team the other day, when he said they "don't deserve to win a championship." I won't go that far, but I ain't mad at him for saying it out loud.

As I have said a few times, blogs are not dumbing down journalism, the journalists are doing a great job of that on their own.

Jemele Hill:Let's not drink from the cup of crazy.

JemeHill wants to chug from the vat of insanity instead. Have you read some of her columns?

Question: Orlando can beat Cleveland because …

Scoop Jackson: … LeBron James could get hurt, and just maybe Jameer Nelson will have the most miraculous recovery in the history of modern medicine. Those things aside, I really can't see the Magic getting past the Cavs.

What about the Nuggets though Scoop? I thought that is who the Cavs were playing...

Scoop Jackson: … they might prove to be a more focused and driven team in the end. Plus, the Andrew Bynum mystery is still hanging over these playoffs. I'd like to know what's really goin' on. A lot of the Lakers' Finals hopes and championship dreams hinged upon his return -- the Lakers having him this time around, as opposed to not having him in the playoffs last year. But what's goin' on? Timing and conditioning are one thing, and not having any playoff experience and trying to get acclimated to the level of play is another -- but when your coach says it's something "mental" and benches you twice during the playoffs, something's not right.

What's the opposite of a "contract push" in the playoffs like Jerome James and Glen Davis have done over the past couple of years when these players were about to become free agents after the season and they played better in the playoffs? If the opposite is a "contract reduction" push, is it possible Andrew Bynum is performing the first "contract reduction" push?

Jemele Hill: Dahntay Jones has become a poor man's version of James Posey in these playoffs. He completely took Chris Paul out of the Denver-New Orleans series.

The real James Posey played against this same Denver Nuggets team and did not fare too well. That doesn't make me as excited about the prospects of what the poor man's Posey can do against the Lakers.

That is all the NBA Playoff prophecies we get from these experts. We are all weeping in sadness because JemeHill and Scoop only have enough time to impart such little knowledge to us.

2. Tim Povtak has a really stupid question to ask. LeBron or Dwight Howard? Which one would you rather have on your team?

My answer is LeBron a thousand times over. I do realize Howard is a quality center, which are hard to find, but players like LeBron are also hard to find.

Only one can make it there, settling the debate -- temporarily -- over which team was luckier to get their pick, which player is better suited to dominate the league, and at which position is it more important to have a franchise player.

This is not even a debate. LeBron is better suited to dominate the league since he is already doing so and it is important to have a franchise player at any position. Point guard, shooting guard, small forward, power forward or center. It doesn't matter, you still have to build around them. A team with a great center still needs other great players or the team will end up being just mediocre.

Do you want the best center in the game? Or the best perimeter player?

Ok, Tim Povtak needs to be reprimanded harshly for calling LeBron James a "perimeter player." Like he hangs out on the perimeter all the time. He has more inside game than Howard does.

"Lebron is the better all-around player, there is no question about that," former Sacramento Kings coach Reggie Theus told FanHouse Monday. "And I love LeBron. He's going to be one of the best to ever play the game. It's just a tough question, though, [over who to take]. If you look at history. I would have to take Dwight."

Ask the coach of the Kings, one of the worst teams in the league. That's real fucking smart. If given the choice between these two, the Kings would have taken Emeka Okafor or Darko Milicic.

"If you're going to win championships, you have to have great defense, and it's tough to argue with Howard on that one."

Howard won his first Defensive Player of the Year award and his second rebounding title this season.

If I recall correctly, LeBron James made the All-NBA Defensive Team and very well could have and should have been DPoY this year. Rebounding, I will give to Howard, but when Kendrick Perkins shows you up when you are playing one-on-one defense that is not a good thing. I know this blog has become a haven for Dwight Howard haters or at least harsh critiques of his game or lack of game, and maybe we expect too much from him, but a Howard v. James argument seems pretty easy to decide for me.

"I would take the more complete player," said John Gabriel, New York Knicks director of professional and free-agent scouting, and former NBA Executive of the Year. "I'd take the one whose skill set fits better in today's climate, and with the way the rules stand today."

Gabriel would not name James directly, worried about any future free-agent implications,

The Knicks are already worried about tampering with LeBron James. They are going to go after him so hard in two years. They are already preparing to pull out all the stops. They may even invite him to be a part of the cast of SNL and have his own Broadway play if that's what it takes.

"The one guy [James] is clearly a once-in-a-lifetime player. They both are. But what are the chances of being in the position to take a center like that? "

Are there guys like James coming out of the draft every year that I am not aware of? James is better offensively by a mile, defensively they are even, and James is also is able to make his teammates better which is not an ability Howard has shown a whole lot of or can't show a lot of at this point in his career. James by a mile. It's not even a question in my mind.

3. I am proponent of college players having to stay in college for a full 2 years or they can go straight to the pros from high school. I think if they go to college, they have to commit for more than one year, I would like three years but that is too much. I actually would like for all players to go to college before going to the NBA but I know that is not realistic. Gary Parrish has some really interesting data. It concerns the make up of this year's playoffs teams.

Add it up and nine of the 12 leading regular-season scorers (who are currently active) from the Lakers, Nuggets, Cavs and Magic never played college basketball.

I don't know if this year is just an outlier or not and this may not be true for prior years, but this is some interesting information. It almost tells me there is no need for a player to attend college to be a contributor on an NBA playoff team. Of course some of these players are international players where many of the college-taught fundamentals are taught in the pro leagues and some of the pro leagues are actually "college leagues" in that they don't always contain the highest degree of talent. So in essence those who don't come over to America to play at age 18 are going to college. Of course many of the international players come over to America at a young age anyway and never play in any international pro leagues. I am rambling now...

I can't make an excuse like that for the American players who went straight to the NBA. There is no good conclusion I can come to, other than to say going to college to play for a year may not be necessary.

Six (Bryant, Bynum, Smith, James, Howard and Lewis) went directly from American high schools to the NBA, three (Gasol, Ilgauskas and Turkoglu) are international players, and the other three (Anthony, Billups and Williams) played in college for a combined total of five seasons.

This is some interesting data. I wish this talent had all gone to college because I love college basketball, but this year's NBA playoffs team makeup seems to indicate that college is not always necessary to develop a kid into a great player at the NBA level.

4. Jay Mariotti is now giving props to Michael Phelps for persevering through his out of the pool troubles.

Everyone may remember this post where Mariotti tore Phelps a new asshole for smoking pot even though Mariotti admitted to smoking pot as well and then I took Mariotti to task for being a hypocrite. Then I made the mistake of including the name Apolo Anton Ohno in my post because he was quoted in Mariotti's article and a Apolo Anton Ohno message board tried to tear into me. Let's just say it was a long day and if you did not get to experience it I would encourage you to read the comments. It just so happened that I threw a party (the grown up kind) in my attic that night and so my comments get progressively semi-drunker and I wanted the Ohno fans to leave me alone...which they eventually did.

Jay Mariotti originally thought that Phelps needed to continue competing to show children what he did was a mistake, which made no sense to me and still doesn't. Him continuing to compete can also tell children you can smoke pot and still be a top flight athlete.

He was on the precipice: continue to endure the global spotlight or fade away as a 23-year-old retiree, which would give him plenty of time to party and lush out as he pleased. This was no insignificant decision for humankind, either. If a legendary athlete fled years before his time because he couldn't tolerate intense scrutiny, what would it say about Phelps, his priorities, the cruelty of society in 2009 and the peek-a-boo syndrome of advancing technology?

It would say he is rich and doesn't want to have to deal with sportswriters like Jay Mariotti analyzing his every move if he doesn't want to.

Fortunately for Phelps -- and his legacy in sport and life -- he did not run from the problems he created.

Am I the only one that doesn't see the correlation between success in athletic endeavors and how this makes up for his mistakes? His gold medals in Beijing did not make the fact he got a DUI three years earlier any more excusable and if he participates in 2012 that won't mean that the picture of him smoking pot has any more or any less significance. Any attempts to tie these together doesn't make sense to me.

Are we going to forgive him for his mistakes if he brings home more gold medals? To indicate that the American public would do this seems pretty dumb to me. For some reason Mariotti still clings to the notion that Phelps needs to compete to get forgiveness from American and society. I just don't understand this.

5. I don't know if anyone has heard this news or not, it has been a pretty quiet story, but David Ortiz is struggling to hit this year. Ken Rosenthal says the unthinkable, that is would be easy to replace him.

The best part about the Red Sox is that they are unsentimental and it may pay off in this situation. I think this is an interesting situation because he has gone from a feared LH hitter to someone who can't hit the ball out of the park in one year.

Here are the options:

Ortiz's .666 OPS is the 17th-lowest in the American League. However, the league average for designated hitters at the start of the week was only .777. Last season, it was .780.

Keep him around and hopes he snaps out of it, which I think he will do.

The Sox probably could not trade Ortiz, who is earning $12.5 million annually through next season. Even if they tried to be creative — say, by attaching him to a young pitcher — Ortiz would possess enough service time to block any deal.

Unless the Red Sox eat a lot of salary I don't see this happening.

Removing Ortiz from the No. 3 spot would not necessarily help matters. The Sox would need him to produce even if he were hitting seventh; J.D. Drew currently is their only left-handed hitter with power.

I wonder if they could put him at the No. 10 spot?

If the Sox merely confined their search to left-handed hitters in the final years of contracts, they could choose from among the following:
Rick Ankiel (Cardinals), Hank Blalock (Rangers), Jason Giambi (A's), Brian Giles (Padres), Aubrey Huff (Orioles), Adam LaRoche (Pirates), Chad Tracy (Diamondbacks).

Basically look for the Red Sox to make a trade and get a LH bat, possibly a guy like Huff who has experience at multiple positions, and then Ortiz will have more time to break out of the slump, or they can bench him until he gets a key hit in a key playoff game, which is going to happen. I can feel it.

That's your Red Sox update for the day.

6. I am sure you have all heard about this guy (douchebag) who held a homerun ball ransom for memorabilia.

I know you want my opinion. I think he is an asshole. Not because of what he wanted in exchange for the ball, that's not my overall problem with him. My problem is that he continuously does shit like this. He catches homerun balls and then demands a king's ransom from players who did not even hit the ball. Guys who just are teammates with the player who hit the ball, but have nothing to do with the situation. Chris Coghlan, who hit the ball in question, played here in Greensboro two years ago and he was very nice and signed autographs before and after games when he was here. He seemed like a good guy. Sure he is a high draft pick and probably not a great guy, but he seemed that way to me.

The guy even wears a Marlins hat to make it look like he is a Marlins fan so they are more inclined to get him the memorabilia he wants. My problem is not that he wanted Coghlan to do anything for him, but that he wanted a Hanley Ramirez autographed bat. What the fuck did Ramirez have to do with anything? If he would get that smug grin off his face for a few minutes he would realize there is a vast secondary market for autographs and maybe a player who is not even slightly involved in the homerun that was hit does not want to sign an autograph on a bat this guy can sell for a profit.

It sounded innocent enough until I read some of the other shit this guy did. He calls himself the Happy Youngster even though he is 29 years old and has a family. He is not a youngster, he is an opportunistic douchebag. Just read some stuff about him in this post on Deadspin and make up your mind but I think you will agree with me. D-O-U-C-H-E.

7. Mike Freeman thinks that the fans are too close to the action in the NBA.

The NBA has long been asking for serious trouble by sitting its fans so close to the action, where large athletes beat the hell out of each other just inches away from their fans.

I have to admit, it is a bit disconcerting to see Larry David sitting two chairs down from Phil Jackson at the Staples Center (and yes, I still want to call it the Forum). It feels too close to me. The fans want to be that close but they need to realize when they are that close they can get hurt.

The NBA does this because the league desires to make more money. It put a price tag on closeness and intimacy. Fine, that's the NBA's choice. One day, it'll pay the price for that kind of arrogance -- and that day might be coming sooner than they think.

I am never going to make excuses for players going in the stands and fighting the fans but players are human as well and if a fan sitting in a chair courtside keeps heckling a player, at some point a player may lose his temper and lash out at that fan. If you want the fans to feel like they are a part of the action that is fine, but they may end up actually being a part of the action at some point.

The NBA does this because the league desires to make more money. It put a price tag on closeness and intimacy. Fine, that's the NBA's choice. One day, it'll pay the price for that kind of arrogance -- and that day might be coming sooner than they think.

I have heard similar terms being used at games I have attended. The fans feel like they are a part of the team now more than ever and I think it shows in the language they use and how they berate the players sometimes. I personally would never berate a pro athlete because I know that person could snap and come after me. I berated one college player one time, Julius Hodge, at a bar in Raleigh and immediately regretted it. Not only because I was in Raleigh were he was a god, but also because he is a lot bigger in person than he was on television.

It's now only a matter of time before one of these fans at a courtside seat attacks a player. That's definitely the direction all of this is headed.

As much as I hate to agree, I do agree.

8. I haven't bashed Brett Favre in a week, so here is some interesting information about him and how he performs at the end of the year. (This information was only for 2008)

You'll note Favre's completion percentage dropped nearly nine points on average after Game 11, and he threw nearly three times as many interceptions (34) as touchdowns (13) over the combined final stretches of those seasons.

There is a chart at this link that also shows how other "elite" quarterbacks had their numbers drop off at the end of the year but none of those dropped as much as Brett Favre's did. Maybe the Vikings should consider replacing him with Gus Frerotte after Week 11.

From the outside, at least, they reveal a simple but valuable fact: He hasn't had the stamina to maintain acceptable production over a 16-game season for some time.

This is the type of stuff Peter King will not mention when discussing Brett's desire to play football. Favre can still be a great quarterback but he can't play a full 16 game schedule and play at a high level. He just can't do it anymore. Stay retired, would be my advice to him.

According to STATS Inc., Favre has played 14 games in weather under 40 degrees during the 2005-08 span we've been analyzing. In those games, he's thrown nine touchdown passes and 25 interceptions while compiling a 60.3 passer rating.

In eight indoor games during times when the outdoor temperature was less than 40 degrees, Favre threw 15 touchdown passes and five interceptions while compiling a 99.9 passer rating. (Also based on STATS research.)

So over the past four years, the grizzled cold weather veteran Favre has shown that he performs actually quite poorly in cold weather. Again, this is the type of stuff those who throw hyperbole about Favre's desire and ability to play in cold weather will not mention. Peter King won't bring this up in his MMQB, even though he throws other player's statistics on there to show trends. He likes Brett and won't do this to him.

9. Fortunately those who are tired of the Brett Favre situation can look at these 10 storylines and get pumped up for the new NFL season.

I read these ten things that Peter Schrager put up and got overly excited for the football season. The information about how Michael Mitchell was the 73rd ranked safety in the draft by Mel Kiper I thought was interesting.

I am pretty sure I am not excited for Tony Gonzalez's appearance in Atlanta. As long as the Brett Favre talk is kept at a minimum I think I will be able to handle the new football season.

10. Take a look at this picture of Tyler Hansbrough and try not to laugh. I am going to miss making fun of his face now that he has graduated to the NBA.

On another note, he is signing autographs in the town where I grew up and at the pharmacy of a guy who went to my church growing up as well. I am not kidding when I say I grew up around tons and tons of UNC fans.

the home of Sun-Drop, Fred Drust, and James Worthy.

Worthy and Durst both suck but Sun-Drop is badass. I make a habit of getting people addicted to it. It's like Mountain Dew but less diluted tasting, more citrusy and with more caffeine. Call me crazy but I don't buy any for a week or two and then try it again just so I don't get used to the taste. Yes, I know I am insane.


AJ said...

I just posted this in Bills chat...

"So you gave up on the Bruins since their owner is so cheap, yet you continue to buy season tickets to the Clippers who have the cheapest owner in all of sports...can you explain how that makes sense?"

Think I make it in? Doubtful!

And he is already talking about this Rubio guy being a sure chance in hell he has seen him play.

Oh and he thinks the Clippers should trade the pick, along with their next two first round picks for Durant! Yes, 3 first round picks for Durant! And he refers to the Clippers as "we". I would take Blake and 2 other first round picks in a second for Durant.

I love the excuses for Boston not being able to make it past the second round cause they have played so much the past 2 years...I remember the Pistons making 6 straight conferance finals and never heard anyone complain about the fact they played so much...

AJ said...

Anyone who would take Howard over James is smoking crack. Howard will go down as a good player, not a great one. It's amazing that you win a dunk contest and everyone thinks you are the best player ever. Or win one defensive player of the year award (which should have gone to Artest). Ben Wallace won a bunch of those, would you take Wallace over James?

I for one do not think Ortiz will turn it around. I believe he is done as a player, there is just no way someone his age will turn it around. We are not talking about a hitter that hits for average...when power hiters lose it, they lose it completly. He will never learn to hit it opposite field and teams continue to pull that shift on him, he won't get hits. That and the fact they actually have some sort of drug testing going on means he'll never be good again.

Speaking of Boston and ESPN...I watched Baseball Tonight last night and they had like a 10 min segment on segment on Kruk breaking down what is wrong with Ortiz (which I found funny on a few levels, most of which him saying Ortiz should hit opposite field (duh) and the fact he gives advice).

Then a really weird thing on BT, anyone else catch the show last night and see Gammon "playing" a guitar? Seriously...he had an electric guitar and was tyring to play it. That was horrible.

ivn said...

reading the Peter King reader mail regarding Michael Vick (and some of it is feisty)...damn. this is one of the few things I agree with Peter on and this is as an unabashed dog lover. reading things like:
"He's a dog torturer. He has no room in our society let alone our favorite sport. He should be banned for life.''

"...what Vick did was a disgusting, horrible and despicable thing. A thing that cannot be forgiven. If the NFL lets Vick back in to play, then the NFL is not sending the right message to the players and fans. It's not just us adults who watch this game. Children of all ages watch and dream of playing in this game. When they see Vick back on the field after killing dogs for fun in the manner in which he did, then they'll think its OK to do so as long as you do a SMALL amount of jail time to pay that price..."

(yes, that's right, now all the kids in this country will want to go to jail for organizing million dollar dogfighting rings...? do kids look at any amount of time in jail as a "small amount"? this blows my fucking mind)

etc. etc...

"...however, in my opinion he should not be afforded status in the NFL. Much like the privilege of voting, some privileges should not be reinstated after incarceration..."

(if anyone goes to jail--for any offense--they shouldn't be allowed to vote or return to their job? well at least he's consistent and not singling out dogfighting but god damn)

there's something about animals in the equation that makes people turn completely irrational. people honestly feel as though Vick is the black Jeffrey Dahmer.

I think what Vick did was pretty abominable. but I think it sets a bad precedent to give the man a lifetime ban after serving the punishment the United States gave him, because there are so many athletes who fuck up. sports isn't some idyllic vacuum where real-life human flaws are nonexistent--ESPN and the internet kind of fucked that up--and I don't see the point in trying to turn it into one. it's a business industry, not a fantasy playground. in every industry in the world there are scummy people who do scummy things and end up getting their jobs back. for Christ's sake, Ted Kennedy killed somebody and is still a goddamn U.S. Senator. if some NFL team actually thinks Michael Vick can still be a productive football player--and if he still wants to play--fucking let him. anything else would be, dare I say it, un-American.

(and my unfocused rant ends. clearly nothing outrages me more than misguided moral outrage.)

Bengoodfella said...

I saw that he is having a chat. I don't want to turn this into "Fire Bill Simmons" or anything of the like, but I may have to take a look at this one.

The introduction to the chat calls the Clippers his "beloved" team and I am not sure if they are being sarcastic or not. I don't know if I want to post anything about Simmons because I think at this point we are going to give Jeremy Conlin a heart attack.

I was a little impressed with the title defense by the Celtics but I never bought the "tired" argument since other teams have had to do similar things to try and defend the title.

You won't ever make the chat, I made it one time when I did a completely SimmonsClone question about a Patriots game and that is the only reason I made it. Regardless of what a great point you make, he won't answer. His Boston Bruin excuse has more holes in it than I can ever imagine. Just say you like them because they became relevant again.

He loves himself some Rubio and also said "March Madness" or the NCAA Tournament as I fondly call it sucked this year. Yeah, only one of the best teams of all time laid waste to the entire tournament, how boring is that?

Bengoodfella said...

I don't even think it is a contest to be honest. Howard is a great center but James has proven this year he is in a completely different league from the other players in the NBA. Or at least nearly all of the NBA players currently playing. I don't think a DPoY award should automatically mean the player is the greatest player ever and Ben Wallace is a great example.

I do think Ortiz will turn it around, simply because I can't believe his power has disappeared like this. I very well could be wrong, it has been known to happen to me, but I can just see him heating up and having a great postseason. That's my nightmare (no offense Red Sox fans) at least.

I never got why John Kruk broke down people's swings on BBTN, though he wasn't a bad player, I would put Ortiz above him. If Ortiz can't figure it out, I doubt Kruk will be able to. That 10 minutes of covering the Red Sox is why I haven't watched BBTN in a long time. It's too much fluff like that, with interviews with A.J. Burnett or something similar to that. There are more than a few teams in MLB, I wish they would show it sometimes. To their credit the Padres and Brewers are playing Sunday Night Baseball this week.

Ivn, I can't really make up my mind on what I think because I feel like Vick has done his time, but I really, really like animals and think it is sickening what he did to those animals. Everyone has such moral outrage at him coming back, but I am not in that camp, I just want to see remorse and maybe have him do work with humane shelters. Gregg Doyel had an interesting column up about this I thought about posting on, where he thinks Vick coming back would show everyone that he was stupid because he lost everything. He thinks it would mean more for him to come back and show how he lost all that money and time from the game, rather than just fade away.

I don't ever think about banning him from the game, but then again, I know the NFL will do something regarding suspending him. Those readers of Peter's were a little bit over the top for my tastes. They need to bring it down a notch or two because you are right, the NFL is not a paradise and people make mistakes. I just want to see remorse and have him fail miserably in a football sense.

If those bankruptcy proceedings are accurate he has lost a lot. I don't think others will want to live up to his example anytime soon.

Chris W said...

1.) Howard over Lebron because "Centers are hard to find"? Funny, I thought "once in an era, perhaps once in a lifetime league-dominating talents" were pretty hard to find too.

2.) re: The "9 out of 12 leading scorers are high school players therefore it shows that players aren't helped by going to college" is false logic imo.

It stands to reason that a high pct of leading scorers would be straight-out-of-high-school players. Players drafted out of high school are only drafted so soon because they have incredibly high ceilings. Most of the players capable of leading the league in scoring weren't given the chance to go to college because they were drafted right away (not that they didn't have a choice, but if you were a lottery pick out of high school you'd be stupid to go to college under the old rules). You're ignoring the high risk kids who failed and taking the high risk kids who succeeded and using them as if they were the total data pool, to reach a conclusion about the value of high school players and the usefulness of seasoning at the college level.

The real question is "do an unduly high percentage of high school players flop in the NBA as compared to college players" and I don't see where the "scoring leaders" data addresses that question.

3.) Happy Youngster home-run boy is a fucking pud. Everyone needs a hobby. Sure. Some people paint little action figures. They're puds. Some people take part in Renaissance Faires. They're puds too. Some people knock over kids for baseballs and use gloves dangling from fishing line to get bullpen baseballs. They are also puds.

4.) I think I think that Matt Ryan is going to suffer a major setback in 2009, not the least because I think Turner's going to miss some serious PT to injury.

5.) I liked that "Race you for a sundrop" commercial.

Fred Trigger said...

I was about to make a comment defending Ortiz decline, and steroid allegations. I'm looking at you, AJ (shaking my fist) but the games on. Maybe later after a few beers when I start feeling argumentative and doing research.

Bengoodfella said...

I can't even tell you how dumb Howard v. James truly is in my opinion. There's no doubt it is James and it tells me something about NBA personnel guys that they don't immediately say James.

I hate agreeing with you Chris because it looks like I changed my mind but when reading that article I could not help but think about guys like Gerald Green, Kwame Brown, and many of those that got drafted in the second round. I think the numbers Parish was pulling out proved you don't need to go to college to be a top flight scorer in the NBA, but really no one was arguing that point. I think players should go to college for two years maximum or go straight to the NBA after college.

I don't know if using scoring is the best measurement also. I think someone should put together a study, and I would love to do this, to see what percentage of flameouts came from HS and those flameouts that came from college to see if players who came directly from HS have a higher ceiling but also a lower "basement" in the NBA. Basically if they have as much of a chance of flaming out as they do becoming a star. That would interest me. I thought it was interesting that so many players led their team in scoring and they did not go to college.

I did not like the Happy Youngster too much either. Look, I know it is his hobby and all of that but I don't understand why he has to get players involved who are just on Coghlan's team and don't have anything to do with the situation. I just saw pictures of him and read his story and thought he seemed pretty smug and annoying to me. I know people like what he does but just because he caught the homerun ball does not mean he can make demands for other player's stuff.

Don't tell Casey that Matt Ryan is going to have a bad year. He will be very upset. Personally, I don't want anyone to get injured but if the Falcons don't play well, I hope the Panthers do.

I love Sundrop, remember the commercial. It's an addiction I have. Not to the point where I am insane or anything, but I like it nonetheless.

Fred, I would like to see a Detroit-Boston debate go on. Not that I want to encourage anger between two valued commenters, so nix what I said. Still, I believe Ortiz will turn it around but AJ did have a strong opinion on that. It is bizarre his power has been sapped though.

Fred Trigger said...

well Ortiz did homer tonight (thank god). Hopefully this is a turning point.

Nah, I'm all good with an angry war in the comments section. I'm more for the rational debate thing. However, I got way too much sun today so I'm tired as fuck, I'll save it for another day.

Bengoodfella said...

Well, that's boring. Ortiz homered? I knew the second I posted something about it, he would homer. I tore Garrett Anderson up in the comments last week and then he went 3-5 with 3 RBI the next night. I prefer rational debate as well, we'll save the anger for another post.

The Casey said...

No, don't worry about it. I'm assuming the Falcons are going to have a bad year this year. They're never had back-to-back winning seasons, so something bad is going to happen. I can totally see Turner getting hurt after shattering his career high for carries last year. And I don't know how much Gonzalez has left, but I was glad they made the trade so they didn't pick a TE in the first round. Although they picked the guy I wanted them to this year, so that probably won't work out.

Also, people talk about Howard being DPOY, but LeBron was second in the voting, so it's not loke Howard has a huge advantage there.

I think you're overestimating the American public, BGF. I think they will forget about Phelps' misdeeds if he brings home a bunch more gold medals in 2012. Josh Hamilton is the name that comes to mind there, along with Brett Favre, as people who have bettled drug/addiction problems and pretty much erased them from peoples' memories, or turned them into an advantage. Not that I know, or care, really, that Phelps has a "problem," per se.

Bengoodfella said...

I am usually pretty negative about my teams as well but I feel pretty good about Carolina this year, though they do have a tough schedule and they got lucky at the end of some games last year, so I don't expect the same success. Of course since I am being positive, that means it will all go downhill from there. I should be negative to pretend like I expect the 6-10 year that could happen.

In my mind, its pretty clear James over Howard would be the right call 9 times out of 10. Howard's area of strengths are not that much stronger than James' ability in the same category, while James has strengths that Howard doesn't even come close to.

I was surprised to see Orlando beat Cleveland last night. They took their foot off the gas too early it looks like.

I go around all day talking about what morons the American public are. I thin maybe I am overestimating them. He brings home some golds and all is forgiven, even though there was really not that much to forgive in the first place.