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Kazzy

One man. Two boys. Twelve kids.

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118 Responses

  1. Avatar Burt Likko says:

    I predict that once again I will blithely fail to pay any appreciable attention to the NBA during the regular season. The playoffs just seem to last for so long when they’re going on that it’s like I don’t need to pay attention at all until then. And should you be right and the Lakers really, really suck, chances are good I won’t pay any attention at all.

    Of course, given that everyone expects Miami to win it all again, we could just skip it altogether and just have a party for LeBron And His Crew right now. If they’ve got it all sewed up so tightly, then what’s the point of going through the motions?Report

    • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Burt Likko says:

      For what it’s worth, I don’t think it is a foregone conclusion that the Heat will win. I just think they were the best team last year and, save for Chicago getting Rose back, I can’t think of another contender that dramatically improved. The Bulls will likely be their toughest out and I wouldn’t be shocked to see Chicago come out of the east. I’m just refusing to do what SI did a few years ago, when they noted that it had been several years since the team with the best record won the World Series so they were going to deliberately pick a team they didn’t think was the best to win. Because that makes sense.

      Right now, on paper, the Heat are the best team in the league. It makes sense to pick them to win. If you gave me the field, though, I’d take it.Report

      • Avatar Scott Fields in reply to Kazzy says:

        Indiana achieved significant improvement on their bench, though that probably doesn’t qualify as “dramatically improved.” However, considering the margin separating the Pacers from the Heat in Game 7 last year was as slim as their weak bench, what they did improve could put them in the Finals.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Kazzy says:

        Granger is a big question mark there. Naturally, he is already injured. But if he returns and returns at full health, how does that impact the team? The easy answer is that they’ve added an All-Star caliber player, making them that much more formidable. But I don’t think it is that simple. How does he impact their rotations and the development of Paul George and George Hill? Ideally, he comes back in time that they can have it figured out in time for the playoffs, at which point they will likely be a real challenger for the east. So, I would consider them a legit contender in the playoffs, but it’d shock me to see them make the 15+ game improvement it’d require for them to challenge for the #1 seed.Report

      • Avatar Scott Fields in reply to Kazzy says:

        I don’t argue with any of that or Point 18 in the OP. The Heat is better designed for the best regular schedule record and a #1 seed in the East. But, a top 4 seed in the East gets you a more favorable path to the late rounds of the playoffs and once there, the Pacers match-up very well against both the Heat and the Bulls.

        Granger is a question mark, no doubt. I was including him as an improvement to the bench. Paul George and Roy Hibbert are both getting better.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Kazzy says:

        If Hibbert can play for 35MPG over 80 games the way he played in that Miami series, they will indeed be trouble for anyone.

        I have Miami as the class of the East with Chicago and Indiana a notch below that. Next up comes Brooklyn and the Knicks, though I think both teams are too flawed to be considered a serious threat.

        Pacers/Bulls would make for a great Round 2 playoff series, though that means the Heat only has to play one of them.Report

  2. Avatar Mike Schilling says:

    The Warriors will make some noise in the playoffs, say, getting to the second or even third round, especially if Bogut is healthy for them.Report

  3. Avatar Tod Kelly says:

    Enjoy this year while you can, Laker haters. Treasure it. Savor it.Report

    • Avatar J@m3z Aitch in reply to Tod Kelly says:

      Oh, we will. Believe me we will. Best story I read recently was about the Clips covering up the Lakers banners when they play, and how some over-privileged wussy Lakers’ fans were whining about it. Made me fell goooooodddd all over. 😉Report

  4. Avatar Notme says:

    Meh, get back to me when college hoops season rolls around.Report

    • Avatar Just Me in reply to Notme says:

      True that! NBA, the only professional sport I can’t stand to watch. Give me high-school or college B-Ball any day.Report

      • Avatar Mike Dwyer in reply to Just Me says:

        I concur. Pro ball is just unwatchable for me. Of course, I live in arguably the best state in the country for college hoops, so I’m a little biased.Report

      • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Just Me says:

        College hoops is unwatchable for me. Not the first 35 minutes, which is fine: it’s the last five minutes, which takes an hour because of all the time-outs, that makes me want to throw things at the TV.Report

      • Avatar Jesse Ewiak in reply to Just Me says:

        But, Schilling…fundamentals! People playing for the love of the game (ignore the coach and program making millions)! Defense (and by defense, we mean lots of lower skilled people who can’t shoot)!

        Sorry, the NBA is the best as far as pure talent it’s been since the late 80’s to early 90’s. If you still don’t enjoy the NBA, it’s not the skil level or talent you have a problem with.Report

      • Avatar J@m3z Aitch in reply to Just Me says:

        Jesse, you’re right. The problem with pro ball is the size of the court and the height of the rim. With the increased height and girth of players and speed of the game, the court needs to be lengthened and widened and the rim needs to be moved upward. I don’t know how much for each dimension, other than something statistically significant.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        @jm3z-aitch

        I’m with you on the court dimensions, but not the rim height. That would require such a drastic change and would make the college-to-pro transition miserable. Guys are used to shooting on 10-foot hoops since the time they’re in junior high.

        I believe your wife asked me during an “Ask Kazzy” about what court dimensions I would propose. I never got to answering in part because I’d want to do at least a semi-scientific analysis, which I don’t currently have the times or means to do. In a nut shell, I’d recommend the court be wide enough that two LeBron James couldn’t cover the entirety of it and long enough that LeBron James couldn’t go end to end in 6 steps or whatever it is he can do.

        “LeBron James” should really be a standard unit of measure. “The court needs to be at least 10 LeBron Jameses long and 4 LeBron Jameses wide.”Report

      • Avatar J@m3z Aitch in reply to Just Me says:

        not the rim height. That would require such a drastic change and would make the college-to-pro transition miserable. Guys are used to shooting on 10-foot hoops since the time they’re in junior high.

        Dude, they’re professionals. And have you seen what they get paid? If adjusting to a higher rim is too much effort for the pay, then we can all mock them for being spoiled brat multimillionaires.

        “LeBron James” should really be a standard unit of measure. “The court needs to be at least 10 LeBron Jameses long and 4 LeBron Jameses wide.”

        Sounds about right. And he ought to like it because it would cement his reputation as the standard by which all things basketball should be measured (that is, once he develops the determination of folks like Bird, Johnson and Michael–he’s improved, but not there yet).Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        @jm3z-aitch

        That’d be like moving the pitching mound back 4 feet when guys go from the minors to the pros. It’s just too big a change. Guys would have to re-learn how to shoot. It’s not just the inside game that would change… everything would. These guys can shoot with their eyes closed. They don’t get to a spot, aim, and fire. They have finely tuned muscle memory that tells them exactly what to do from a given point on the floor. All of that will have to be scrapped and re-learned. Too, too much. Rookies would take years to get it together. The game would become more of a post game as outside and mid-range shooting would fall by the wayside. Maybe that is what you prefer, but I think that’d be a negative.

        Regarding your second point, was Magic really legendary for his determination? Like, in the moment? Revisionist history usually ends up attributing all sorts of things that fit a broader narrative but Magic was before my time so I don’t really know how he was talked about then. And LeBron’s determination has been about as high as one could want ever since his first Olympic experience with Kobe. I’m not really sure we can knock that part of his game anymore. In fact, I’m not really sure we can knock any part of his game.

        But I think we’ve gone down that rabbit hole before, you and I…Report

      • Avatar J@m3z Aitch in reply to Just Me says:

        Kazzy,

        Change the rim at all levels. Who the fish cares if some early growth 7th grader can’t dunk anymore?

        Re: Magic. Yes, he was. His nearly continually smiling demeanor may have obscured his determination, but it was there. On a side note, I recently found out that in high school Magic actually played two of his games at my kids’ high school. This is a bit stupid, but I now find myself looking upon our gymnasium with a touch of awe.

        Re: LeBron’s determination. He’s learned and improved greatly; I don’t dispute that.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        Ahhh…. got it. Raising it across the board is much less objectionable.

        But I must ask… what improvement does this seek to offer? The court dimensions are more obvious to me, but the rim height I’m not so sure what it offers and what it takes away.

        FWIW, the women’s game would benefit greatly from lowering the hoop. There’s not much exciting about a breakaway layup. Let the women play above the rim.

        Interesting to hear about Magic. I know he also had the party boy reputation, with him acknowledging a bit of a double-life (In a recent doc, he discussed how there was Ervin and there was Magic… Ervin was a quiet kid who just wanted to ball; Magic was Arsenio Hall’s best friend. Both were really parts of him, but he struggled to juggle it all.), so it was never clear to me how that translated to the court.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Just Me says:

        Rim height: Let’s face facts, @jm3z-aitch is probably on the right track here. Back when it was established, the point of basketball was a game of shooting, passing, timing and teamwork. The modern dunk reduces the game to Big Guys bulling into the paint and shoving the ball in. Some folks love it. Hey, that’s great for them. It’s screwed up the pro game and increasingly damaging the college and high school games.

        Often said the same thing about the NHL: the game would be far more interesting if the rinks were set to Olympic dimensions, where passing and shooting mattered more — that, or take one man off the ice.

        Every sport needs some tuning. I want to see more regular-sized guys out there, not that I didn’t like the Tall Guys on the court.

        For me, the ideal player was Larry Bird. A mensch with a mean mouth on him, Larry Bird. Never let his mouth outrun his ass: arguably the best all round player the game has ever seen. Michael Jordan was good but Larry Bird was something special. Between Larry and Magic, they were basketball at the time.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        Who cares the original intention? Baseball started with pitchers having to throw underhand with a rigid arm motion, basically lobbing it in. It was slow pitch softball. The pitcher wasn’t really a part of the game, just setting it up for the batter vs the fielders. Thankfully, we moved away from that, because that was boring as shit.

        As for Bird… you do realize the man was 6 feet 9 inches tall, right? He wasn’t regular sized by any stretch of the term. He might not have been hyper athletic, but he was still obscenely talented physically and more athletic than 95% of the people who ever walked the Earth.

        “Ruining the game” for who, I must ask?Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Just Me says:

        Well, yeah. The game began as one thing and became another. So has every professional sport. In every era, the game changes. There wasn’t a three-point line when the game started — why did that evolve? Because under the basket, it had become a scrum.

        And the three point line kept the game open to smaller players. The distance to the three point line changed, too.

        What’s your problem here? I put the Larry Bird thing in its own paragraph. So don’t get obtuse with me. I want to see basketball remain a viable game. Seems like all we’re getting in the Short Shtuff category is people like Mr. Personality Nate Robinson.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        Well, what are you considering “short”? There are still plenty of guys 6-4 and under. And many of them are assuming a wider range of roles on the court. There is more room for little guys, not less. Used to be the short guys could only run the point and act as distributors. But recently we’ve had Allen Iverson, all 5’10” of him playing the 2-guard and scoring in the paint. Derrick Rose is 6’3″ and plays tough as nails. Wade is 6’4″ with more of a post game than an outside game.

        Now, perhaps you see this as a negative, because it is more of a move inside, but it is showing that the little guys still have their spots.

        And the emphasis on inside play isn’t just because of size but because of an evolving understanding on the importance of efficiency. A 2-point shot with a 75% chance of going in is smart than a 3-point shot with a 45% chance of going in. Of course teams are going to try to create opportunities for the former now that we have the data.

        If you want to return to the 70’s and 80’s era of ball which was more nonsense than strategy, by all means, there was fun there. But let’s not pretend that quality of play was better than.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Just Me says:

        I certainly don’t want to return to the 70s. I want a better game of basketball. I think Mr. Aitch’s suggestions are sensible. I think the dunk is damaging the game, all these ignorant orangutans hanging off the rim at its current height. I don’t want to remove the dunk. I want to make it more difficult.

        In short, I want a more sporting game. It’s time for the pro game to reconsider the rules. What would be your argument against raising the rim and making it more a shooting game than a dunking game?Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        “…all these ignorant orangutans hanging off the rim at its current height…”

        Holy shit, dude. That is so far over the line, it’s not even funny.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Just Me says:

        I think the dunk is damaging the game, all these ignorant orangutans hanging off the rim at its current height.

        Holy… shit…Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Just Me says:

        Got a problem with that statement? Why not drop the rim to six feet? That way, we’ll get LOTS more dunks.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        Yes. I do. You just referred to a group of people that is 78% African-American as “ignorant orangutans”. Either of those terms in isolation used in such a blanket way would be grossly offensive. Using them together is disgustingly so.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Just Me says:

        Allow me to wheel out the Fainting Couch. Ten feet long, this one. You’re sure to fit on it, Kazzy. Do make yourself comfortable, Kazzy. Orangutans are orange.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        The only ignorant one here is you, Blaise. Goodbye.

        And, if you would be so kind, please don’t comment on my posts going forward. I’d rather keep my comments section clear of the likes of you.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Just Me says:

        Heh. I will not disappear at your bidding, Kazzy. Your obtuseness doesn’t change the fact that the dunk is damaging the game at several levels. Hanging off the rim ought to be a foul. It never occurred to me that I was making reference to black people. Then again, I don’t sort people out by race, an illusion in which you still persist.

        What a whiner you’ve become, Kazzy. Grow up.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        Hanging on the rim is a foul. If you cared enough to discuss facts instead of your needless pontifications, you might have understood that and not made such a ridiculously offensive statement. But that ain’t your game. It’s about you… not facts, not reality, not the issue at hand. You knew damn well what you said and want to pretend otherwise. You’re the fool here in need of maturation, not me.

        Tell me, why are guys who dunk… guys who recognize the shot as the single-most efficient and valuable shot in the game… ignorant?Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Just Me says:

        What? Are you crazy? Hanging from the rim isn’t always a foul. The safety exception. You need to calm your excitable little self Right Down, Right Away. The dunk has created problems in basketball. Raising the rim would solve a good many of them.

        I resent your implication of racism. That was a cheap shot.Report

      • Avatar J@m3z Aitch in reply to Just Me says:

        Setting aside the really atrocious orangutan comment, Blaise largely made my points. I’m not against dunking itself, but the pro game has become far too much about just running to the rim for the dunk, which comes at the expense of shooting and passing, which are more elegant to watch, and–certainly with passing–more team oriented. The primary problem with the NBA style is that it encourages individual effort at the expense of team play. Ruining it for whom? For me. I’m from Indiana, where love of the game is bred into our very bones. And I don’t love the game anymore. I like college less and less as it becomes more and more like the pros. If you like that style, well, I always say tastes and values are subjective, both yours and mine. But I don’t just dislike the pro game; I hate it. Not just because it’s not traditional, but because to me it’s both ugly and boring. I get that it’s neither ugly nor boring to you, and I don’t ask you to suddenly agree, but I do ask you to recognize that some of us do in fact find it ugly and boring, and to try to understand why we see it that way.

        I also agree with Blaise about hockey. I don’t think the NHL rinks are nearly as undersized as NBA basketball courts, but I think they are a little undersized, and the international dimensions are better for flow of the game.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        Dip, duck, dodge…

        You said hanging on the rim should be a foul.
        I pointed out that it is a foul.
        You pointed out that there is an exception to this for safety reasons.

        What, exactly, is your point? Do you think there shouldn’t be an exception for safety reasons? Should we have guys break their legs or necks to avoid any “ignorant orangutans” on the rim?

        Dude… you’re wrong. Hanging on the rim is not an issue in the NBA anymore because it has been legislated out.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        @jm3z-aitch

        I guess we largely disagree then. I would actually argue that making the NBA court larger is going to lead to more attacking the rim, not less. Right now, the court is too congested. Too many super big, super fast, super athletic bodies. Dunks are relatively rare… some slightly old data says 4% of points are dunks, and I’d venture to guess a good amount of those are breakaways, which will probably remain for the most part even with a higher rim. If you make the court bigger, you open up more lanes for slashers. Now, you could balance this with allowing zone defense (which I wouldn’t have an issue with).

        I’m curious… how much NBA basketball have you watched in the past 5 years? Because I think we have seen that the best teams really do play team ball. Yes, it is a superstars league, but it always has and always will be. When one player can account for 1/6th of a teams minutes, that is going to be the case. But the best teams win with team ball. The Heat? Yea, they have LeBron and Wade and Bosh, but they play a really great team game, especially on defense. The teams that star one-on-one artists are the dregs of the league and GMs are increasingly realizing those guys are not the ones to build around. Notice how Memphis not only gave away OJ Mayo, but got better after doing so.

        What I do miss in the NBA is really good post play. When Z-Bo sets up on the block, I get very, very excited. More excited than is warranted by a series of jab steps. But, man, what jab steps they are!

        So, in summary, I do wonder if you are (unintentionally) responding to a strawman of the league that might have been true in the immediate post-MJ NBA, but which no longer is.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Just Me says:

        Hanging on the rim for any reason ought to be a foul, as surely as travelling or three in the key. The dunk is a menace to everyone under it — and the player himself.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Just Me says:

        I actually think the NBA game of the last few years has been the best it’s been since the free-wheeling 80s (I loved that basketball), and maybe since the ABA before the merger. It is played above the rim, but not exclusively so, and while there’s still a lot of isolation, it’s not like the 90s game that was basically all isolation all of the time. Plus, isolation has become much more creative (sometimes it’s not even clear to the defenses that isolation is occurring, until it’s too late). The drive and kick game played by teams like the Thunder (or at least the Thunder with Westbrook) is open, its creative, and I think it’s pretty damn pure. It’s just about beating your man off the dribble and creating plays. What’s not to like? That dunks are a big part of the goal of driving seems like a feature, not a bug, to me.

        Plus, there are a lot of really good short players in the NBA right now. Look at Rondo or Paul or Paul’s backup Bledsoe (who would be a starter on most teams). Basketball has always been about length (not necessarily height; Rondo is 6’1” with shoes on, but has a 6’9” wingspan). That it’s become more and more about length doesn’t strike me as a problem, any more than the fact that baseball players have gotten leaner and bulkier and football players have gotten leaner and faster.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        Blaise,

        Watch a game tomorrow and tell me how many guys hang on the rim.

        Dunking is not a menace. You sound like the old guys who sought to ban the practice back in the day.

        The Knicks famously lost a chance at the Finals because their 7-foot center opted to finger roll instead of dunk. You want to ban the single most efficient shot in the game because it doesn’t suit your taste.

        Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Just Me says:

        Hanging on the rim for any reason ought to be a foul, as surely as travelling or three in the key. The dunk is a menace to everyone under it — and the player himself.

        When I was in college, I had a friend — well, an acquaintance — who was incapable of admitting that he’d made a mistake or was simply wrong. At first, I and pretty much everyone else who ever had a conversation with him found this incredibly frustrating. Then we realized that, once he’d made a mistake, we could just keep going and he would take himself into more and more comically absurd territory, just to avoid saying that his initial statement, which while wrong was probably not absurdly so, was wrong.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        @chris

        This cements it… I’m going to have to put together my “DUNKS!” post. It will be mostly Shawn Kemp. But, as with so many things, it ought to be mostly Shawn Kemp.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Just Me says:

        I’d do a college version, but it would be all Kentucky.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Just Me says:

        Don’t condescend to me, Chris. I’m not a racist. I don’t think the prevalence of dunks is good for the game. I think raising the rim is a good idea. I’m sick of these obtuse little rants — who do you think you are, lecturing me? Plenty I don’t know and I’m perfectly willing to admit where I’m wrong. Done that plenty around here, never once seen you do it.

        For someone as educated as yourself, your reading comprehension is startlingly bad. Stick with your opinions — though you might convince me were you actually supporting them. You’re not doing so great on that front, either.

        The pro game is becoming a travesty. But I’ve always liked the game of basketball. As I would drive from Louisville back to Chicago, every Friday, once I got out of FM signal range from Louisville, Friday night radio in Indiana was either basketball or Jesus and I chose basketball.

        My son had a basketball hoop in the driveway and that’s where we really bonded as he eventually grew taller than me. He had a good jump shot. He’d stand out there in all weathers and work on his foul line shot, painted onto the cement. The driveway hoop could be adjusted to various heights. As he grew, the rim height went up.

        That’s what’s shaped my opinion of basketball. Who the hell do you think you are, to tell me it’s not valid? It’s just a game but it’s an important game, one with some history and principles. You can make this a pissing contest if you want. I really don’t care and I especially don’t care about what you make of it. Rant off.Report

      • Avatar Mark Thompson in reply to Just Me says:

        Honestly, a few years ago, I’d have been right with James and Blaise talking about how unwatchable the NBA is. But it’s definitely changed quite a bit – for the better – over the last five years or so. I’m not going to pretend to be an expert on pro basketball – I’ve never been more than a casual fan – but the style of the game is vastly different from what it was in the late ’90s through most of the aughts. I mean, ten years ago, guys like Iverson and Marbury were massacring everything good and holy about the point guard position; Jason Kidd was the sole light of hope. Now you’ve got that replaced by the creativity and brilliance of Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook, amongst others.

        It bears mention, by the way, that even during the dark days of the late 90s and early aughts, one of the most perennially successful teams was (and still is) the Spurs, who no one could accuse of playing anything but pure ball.

        Still, though – scoring’s been going steadily upward for about the past seven years after being abysmally low from about 1996 to 2006. At the same time, free throw attempts have actually been going down, which means that the shots being taken are increasingly open; you don’t get open shots without good ball movement.

        What’s more – contra Blaise and James, perimeter play’s been becoming an ever-bigger part of the game, as exemplified by the fact there are about twice as many three pointers now as there were in 2000, and about 75% more than as recently as 2006.

        For all the complaints about this being the era of the “Big Three,” having a “Big Three” means you’ve got to have three guys on the court through whom you’re running your offense on a regular basis; the days of trying to win with just one or two guys running isolation plays are basically gone, and there’s boatloads of actual strategy running through the game now, in a way that didn’t used to be the case, as teams need to figure out whether they’re better off in a given situation with a smaller, more athletic lineup, or a bigger, more traditional lineup, amongst a whole bunch of other stuff.

        It’s also not the case that it’s a game dominated more and more by sheer size- actually, the opposite seems to be true: the Heat just won back to back championships with a 6’1″ starting point guard, a 6’4″ shooting guard (actually no guards at all over 6’5″), no seven footers at all on their roster, and a 225 pound starting center (by comparison, Shaq was 325 pounds).

        Is the dunk becoming a bigger part of the game? I don’t know. But I do know that getting those dunks requires a hell of a lot more team work nowadays than “dump it in to the 7 foot, 300 pound dude and let him try to outmuscle the defender” or “run an isolation play.”Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Just Me says:

        Mark, precisely.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        The other weird thing about the “Big 3” criticism is that Magic just criticized the Heat because they didn’t have enough super stars. Huh? Back in the early 90’s, you could get “Big 3” t-shirts… Bird, McHale, and Parish; Magic, Kareem, and Worthy; Jordan, Pippen, and Grant. My brother, an ardent C’s fan and me, a Jordan backer, would argue until we passed out about whether Grant was worthy of a “Big 3” designation.

        So, the idea of super teams is nothing do. What bristles people is that the players are orchestrating it. For some (not all), this taps into an “inmates running the asylum” mentality, where any athlete brazen enough to speak his mind or otherwise demonstrate agency is out of line. This is often steeped in race and/or class based animosity. Which is really, really ugly.

        Now, LeBron does deserve flak for how he handled “The Decision”. That was simply piss poor PR work (though it shouldn’t be forgotten that it did raise something like $2M for the Boys&Girls Club). And if players are doing anything in violation of the CBA, that should be a concern. But, otherwise, the key to winning now is largely what it has been… get the best 5 to 7 guys possible as top heavy as possible. It’s just happening in a different way because the players are exercising more power over themselves.

        As to the game itself, Mark nailed it. The Iverson/Starbury years were tough. But those guys are gone. Those sorts of players, if they have NBA careers at this point, are seen as 6th or 7th guys who can come in and energize a second unit. See: JR Smith.

        ‘Melo might be the closest thing to that style of elite player, but only the Knicks are dumb enough to build around him as the center of a championship team.Report

      • Avatar J@m3z Aitch in reply to Just Me says:

        OK, if it’s changed that much in recent years my criticism may be out of date and invalid. I’ll try to catch a Pacers game (I am loyal, albeit inattentive), and update my judgement.

        If it’s mostly drive and dish, though, I’ll probably still not like it. I am old school enough to despise an offensive system that eschews picks and screens. I know that’s purely aesthetic, but get the hell off my lawn and keep your damn government hands off my Medicaid because I walked two miles uphill in the snow to and from school you young whippersnappers!Report

      • Avatar Stillwater in reply to Just Me says:

        Great comment Mart T. The pro game is soooo much better than it was ten or even five years ago.

        Also, of all the legitimate criticisms I’ve heard and expressed myself about pro BB over the last couple decades, DUNKING was never mentioned and definitely never even occurred to me. It’s just silly.Report

      • Avatar Scott Fields in reply to Just Me says:

        @jm3z-aitch

        I’m a college fan first and foremost (go Hoosiers!) and I share your basketball aesthetic. So, I have some confidence when I say I think you’ll enjoy the current version of the Pacers. They play a very defense focused, team oriented game.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Just Me says:

        @jm3z-aitch

        If you watch any of the good teams, you’re likely to see a style of play you’ll enjoy. The lone exception would be the Knicks, who have a defensive-minded coach but offensive-minded squad and somehow won their way to the #2-seed in the East. Hell, for most of LeBron’s time in Miami, the offense has been criticized as being boring and too limited because it didn’t have the pizazz people expected with the Big 3 on board. If you read Russ and my breakdown of Game 1 last year, even he could see the beauty of the Spurs team-oriented ball.

        You were right to turn away from the NBA after the Jordan years. I did as well. But the game is better now. This new crop of superstars are a welcome relief from the Iverson/Marbury/Carter/TMac crew.

        I can’t watch just any game. There are still some bad teams who play miserable basketball. And this year in particular, a number of teams have gone into full-on rebuild (hence my prediction about a trio of truly terrible teams and quartet of 60-win teams). If you turn on the TV and are watching Celts/Jazz, run. But if you catch Heat/Bulls or Thunder/Spurs or watch your hometown Pacers, you should see basketball you’ll like.Report

      • Avatar J@m3z Aitch in reply to Just Me says:

        Scott and Kazzy,

        Thanks, I’ll watch. And San Antonio was one of the rare teams I respected.

        But Scott, aesthetics aside, I support the team that has the most Bif Ten championships; the one that has a winning record against every other Big Ten team; the one whose former coach was the only Big Ten coach that Bobby Fishing Knight did not have a winning record against.Report

      • Avatar J@m3z Aitch in reply to Just Me says:

        Heh, Chris, when I was in elementary school we used to play “Kentuckt” basketball, meaning you didn’t to dribble, but could take as many steps with the ball as you wanted. Now I know why we called it that.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Just Me says:

        I assume it also involved winning.Report

      • Avatar Scott Fields in reply to Just Me says:

        @jm3z-aitch in the interest of civility, I’ll have to take a pass on any Big Ten smack talk. Kentucky, though, is fair game.

        I was born in Indiana, my mother went to IU and I was thirteen when the ’76 team went undefeated, so it’s probably fair to say Scott May was my first true love. I no more chose to be a Hoosiers fan than I chose to be bald.

        And that’s Mr. Bobby Fishing Knight to you, sir.Report

      • Avatar J@m3z Aitch in reply to Just Me says:

        Scott,

        Knight was a great coach and a great molder of men. If he had held himself to the same standards he held his players he would have been a great man.Report

      • Avatar Scott Fields in reply to Just Me says:

        Agreed.Report

  5. Avatar Chris says:

    Boogie Cousins is misunderstood! And damn fun to watch… on the offensive side of the ball.

    Also, he got that name from Kentucky Sports Radio, a bootleg blog that has turned into radio and TV programs. It’s probably one of the best blogging success stories ever, because it was absurdly improbable.Report

    • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Chris says:

      I don’t hate on Boogie! I’m just realistic about the roadblocks between him and true dominance, most of which are self-imposed.

      Of course, playing in the Siberia of the NBA isn’t helping.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Kazzy says:

        Yeah, that was me being a defensive Kentucky fan. He’s an interesting guy and an incredibly talented player who gets in his own way more than any defender. I hope he realizes his potential.

        Look for Wall to have a breakout season, too.

        And will the Clippers please trade Bledsoe?

        Also, go Grizzlies.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Kazzy says:

        I drafted Wall pretty high in my fantasy league because I’m expecting big things from him.Report

  6. Avatar Erik Kain says:

    Blaise,

    You may not see a problem with your comment, and it may be that you didn’t mean it to come across the way it did. However, even the most charitable of readings puts you in the wrong here. This is deeply inappropriate regardless of your motives.

    Please don’t make me step in like this. You’re a smart guy, but you need to understand that what you say here is as a representative of the site and you’re held to the highest standard. You’ve crossed the line here.Report

    • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to Erik Kain says:

      I never once intended to make this about race. If this is where it’s gone, sure, I am quite willing to say I crossed a line. But let’s get one thing straight, ere we proceed any farther along this line, I’ve made my position clear enough on the subject of Race around here. It’s an illusion. Race doesn’t matter. It’s an artifact of our ignorant past, where such things did matter.

      So go on making this an issue, folks. I say anyone who holds with Race as a valid criteria for anything is fundamentally a racist.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Referring to NBA players, period, as “ignorant orangutans hanging off the rim” is crossing a line, even without bringing race into it.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to BlaiseP says:

        I’ll take it from Erik. I won’t take it from you, Chris.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to BlaiseP says:

        “Heh. I will not disappear at your bidding.”

        I’m sure I don’t care who you take it from.

        I do hope you grow the hell up soon, or that someone puts you in time out until you do. Right now, you are just a young child with the vocabulary of an English public school grad. You are a blight on every thread you enter.

        These will, I hope, be the last words I ever address to you.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        You still have answered to the “ignorant” part. Leaving orangutan aside, why is it ignorant to take the single most efficient shot on the court?

        Etan Thomas scored an above-average number of his points via the dunk. He has published a book of original poetry, was invited to campaign alongside national politicians, contributed mightily to relief efforts in Haiti, and wrote a book on the importance of fatherhood. You want to tell him he’s ignorant?Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to BlaiseP says:

        At Erik’s insistence, I will state such a remark reflects poorly upon the site and was a lapse in judgement on my part.

        You enjoy basketball with the dunk the way it is. Neither Just Me, who said the pro game has become unwatchable, nor BlaiseP, who went into detail as to why he finds the game unwatchable, for his part because the dunk has become such an integral part of the game, nor JH, who says the game could probably be improved with amending some dimensions — these you won’t address.

        So be it. I don’t like the dunk. I think it’s stupid and dangerous. I think it’s a form of charging. My mistake was to say the people who dunk and dangle are ignorant orangutans. That’s my fault.

        But it doesn’t change my objection to the dunk as it’s evolved over time. Run off and do a post on the dunk. Yay, dunk. Great idea, good theatre, making what was intended to be a shooting game into a slamming game. If that’s what you want, I don’t want it.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        So you won’t address the “ignorant” charge? Fair enough.

        And all you’ve stated is opinion. You’ve stated it as fact, but it is opinion nonetheless. Why do you think the dunk is a form of charging? Even an uncontested dunk? If so, how so? Why do you ignore the numbers… stats… FACTS!… we offer that show the dunk isn’t the dominant force you claim? Four guys averaged more than two dunks per game last year. Four! That’s half a dunk a quarter! So please show some facts to back up your assertions that the dunk has ruined the game.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to BlaiseP says:

        I believe I have addressed “ignorant”, saying the remark was unjustified and poor judgement on my part. But if it makes you feel better, I have just said it, again.

        The dunk is dangerous. That’s a simple fact. Ignorance is either not knowing the facts or refusing to be guided by them.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Did you even read that article? It advocates MORE dunking, not LESS. And it is about high school students. In Maine… not exactly a basketball hotbed.

        Weak. Even for you.Report

      • Avatar Mark Thompson in reply to BlaiseP says:

        That’s not quite accurate, Kazzy – the article says that Maine should either allow dunking during warmups or ban it entirely on the grounds that it’s dangerous.

        However, the evidence that it’s meaningfully dangerous in the article is extremely poor – first, I’d wager that the bulk of whatever hazards were ever involved with dunking were a result of the possibility of the basket or backboard getting destroyed. Second, the evidence for the dangers of dunking in the article is purely anecdotal and, as we all know, the plural of anecdote is not data.

        Third, the injuries he cites are all fairly common sports injuries in virtually any team sport – broken wrists, etc. The most severe injury referenced is concussions – though the big concern with concussions tends to come with the possibility of multiple concussions.

        Fourth, there’s no comparison to other elements of basketball – how frequently do people get concussed from taking an elbow to the head fighting for a rebound or break an ankle trying to make a sharp cut, etc., etc.?

        Everything in sports involves an element of danger; the question is how high the risks of that danger are, and the severity of that danger; if we’re mostly talking about occasional broken wrists and ankles or cuts, which seems to be the case here, then we’re not talking about a particularly meaningful danger.Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to BlaiseP says:

        I broke my arm and got a concussion in high school basketball (actually the former was at a skills camp, but for high school basketball players). Neither involved dunking (the only dunking I ever did was in practice without dribbling, so…).

        Any time a player leaves the ground, there is a chance of injury. This is as true of a rebound or layup as it is of a dunk. No one seriously thinks that dunks are any more dangerous than other aspects of basketball. I mean, the most common dunking injuries I saw were hand and fingers, and those were minor, and nothing compared to the incidence of hand and finger injuries from rebounding.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Did you read what I’ve said about it, Kazzy? I’ve explicitly stated I don’t want to remove the dunk from the game. Being hectored by you on this subject is like being nibbled to death by a duck. I put up what I consider to be a fair-minded assessment of the dunk, by a coach, who seems to have a pretty good angle on how to keep the dunk issue from becoming a problem. If the dunk isn’t allowed in practice, why is it allowed in the game? If the dangle is permitted for “safety” issues, there might just be a problem. Failure analysis. Chain of catastrophe. Why is the guy dangling? Because he dunked. Why not just take down the backboard and put in a big old trash can at the end of the paint, that way nobody’s dangling for any reason?

        You may read into that what you wish: there is no doubt in my mind the dunk is a problem, for the reasons outlined.Report

      • Avatar Gaelen in reply to BlaiseP says:

        It’s a little ironic that some are complaining about there being too much dunking in the NBA, and claiming that this this has come at the expense of shooting. [insert get off my lawn joke here]. But, as the data shows, the NBA is taking more 3 pointers than ever before, and making a greater percentage.

        I would also second the commenter’s who discussed the ways in which the game has recently changed for the better.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        I have read what you said about it and it’s all bullshit.

        What is your objection to the dunk?
        Safety? Well, you haven’t demonstrated that dunking contributes a significant risk beyond that which is inherent to sports.
        De-emphasis of the “little guy”? Well, that flies in the face of the fact that small-ball is the name of the game in the NBA and insiders bemoan the dearth of the big man, not the “little guy”.
        De-emphasis of the perimeter game? Well, that ignores the constant record breaking we see with regards to three-point attempts and makes.

        So what, exactly, is your objection? My assumption is that it is aesthetics, which is wholly subjective. And that’s totally fine. You are welcome to hate the dunk from a subjective standpoint. But you are not welcome to present your subjective opinion as objective fact, nor are you welcome to support your subjective opinion with bogus facts.

        And should you hate the dunk for aesthetic or other subjective reasons, as is your right, you are in the minority. And no about of blabbering will change that. Most NBA fans love the dunk. It is why we have a dunk contest. It is why dunks riddle top play lists. It is why fans rise to their feet when they see one of the world’s greatest athletes spot a sliver of a hole in the defense and make a run to the hoop for a gravity-defying act of mid-air majesty. It gives us plays like this, where one human JUMPS OVER ANOTHER HUMAN like he’s stepping off a curb:

        So hate the dunk if you must, but know that you are A) doing so purely on subjective grounds and B) are in a small minority.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        @gaelen

        Dude, I’ve been looking for that video for years. Thanks!Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        It is also important to note that the dunk isn’t exactly a new phenomenon. It has been around for decades. Yes, the NCAA banned it briefly in the 60’s and 70’s in response to Lew Alcindor, but it has otherwise been a part of basketball for a long, long time. That it would suddenly destroy the league now is… curious.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Have it your way, Kazzy. The dunk is great, absolutely no problems with it.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Typical @blaisep … push your bullshit, try to dig your way out of the hole, and then pretend to take the high road when there is no where else to go.

        You’re wrong. It happens. Be an adult about it for once.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Oh Kazzy said a mean thing. Heh, heh. Should I run off and whine to Erik, now? Sheep grow like their shepherds and shepherds like their sheep and you spend too much time around little children.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        I didn’t say a word to Erik. You got called out all on your very own. Take some damn accountability for once.

        Oh yea, and you’re still wrong about dunking being dangerous, de-emphasizing smaller players, and de-emphasizing the perimeter game.Report

      • Avatar Mark Thompson in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Guys, of all the things to get into a pissing match over, this is about the silliest.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Shrug.

        In general, a comment will be deemed inappropriate if it makes no attempt to address a point germane to the original post or another comment and instead contains nothing more than a blanket personal attack directed at the author or another commenter will be deleted.

        No skin off my nose what you say. But let’s not pretend you haven’t crossed a line.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Would you rather we go back to discussing how NBA players are “ignorant orangutans”?

        I crossed no line. I take issue with your style of argumentation. It is perfectly germane to push back against that when you are arguing in a disingenuous and dishonest way.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP in reply to BlaiseP says:

        We might well take Mark’s comment under advisement, Kazzy. I said a stupid thing. It was wrong. And I’ve said as much.

        I propose to take a self-imposed penalty, as I once did, when I made another error in judgement. I’ll be back in a week, maybe longer. This is no GBCW, I might yet have something to say here, again, soon. Just not now. I think I’ve earned this time out and it’s best for everyone if I take it.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Ya know, it’d probably just be easier for you to say, “I was wrong about the dunk being objectively bad for the NBA, smaller players, or the perimeter game.” Quicker, too.Report

      • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to BlaiseP says:

        Ook!Report

      • Avatar Dave in reply to BlaiseP says:

        I heard some things were going on in this thread. I also heard others handled it and I deferred to them. However, having actually read through all of this nonsense for this time, I feel the need to say a few things, not only for myself but for the commenters of the League that have had to put with BlaiseP’s idiotic bullying and one of the worst non-apology apologies I have ever seen written by someone that has so clearly screwed up that it takes a rare form of moron not to recognize (sadly, the author seems to qualify).

        I don’t know if BlaiseP will see this. I don’t care either way. I’m going to give this the proper response.

        I never once intended to make this about race.

        I couldn’t care less what was intended. Given the historical (and current in some places) associations made by bigots to people of a certain race and primates, the inability to see that a comment involving professional basketball players and primate could trigger outrage is stunning to me, especially coming from someone that I view highly intelligent despite having a very combative personality.

        If this is where it’s gone, sure, I am quite willing to say I crossed a line.

        That you conceded to this only after Erik had to step in and point this is out is something I find disappointing beyond words. Nor does it make up for the fact that not only were you not aware of what you said, but your attitude and conduct after having it pointed out to you was reprehensible and showed absolutely NO sense of character. You don’t like to be wrong…at all…to a near pathological extent in my opinion. I get that, but that can be a severe liability.

        Seriously, what the fish is this?

        Got a problem with that statement?

        Your obtuseness doesn’t change the fact that the dunk is damaging the game at several levels.

        You screw up, double down on it and then attempt to turn it back at the people that called you out? Third graders do this. Mature adults don’t. Adults with poor character do. If you think this is condescending, too fishing bad. I’m just getting started.

        But let’s get one thing straight, ere we proceed any farther along this line, I’ve made my position clear enough on the subject of Race around here.

        Understood. I never pegged you as a racist anyway. Non-issue.

        However, YOU need to get something two things straight. FIRST, if you make idiotic comments, especially that may cross a line dealing with highly sensitive issues such as race, you will be held accountable for them. There isn’t a damn thing you will be able to do about that. SECOND, as disgraceful as your comment was, your attitude towards the people pointing it out was even MORE disgraceful. Your non-apology is disgraceful. Your inability to man up and accept responsibility for making a mistake without Erik and several others pushing you into it is more troublesome to me. I’m equal parts angry and sad about this.

        So go on making this an issue, folks.

        You obviously don’t get it. That tells me you’re not anywhere near as smart as you think you are.

        For me, your inability to separate the halfway decent, intelligent person from the egomaniacal-raging-dickhead-never wrong-pseudo alpha-bully asshole part of you is the problem. Lately, the latter dominates the former, so much so that I completely agree with Chris when he says you’re a blight on every thread. I don’t want to agree, but this pretty much speaks for itself.

        I hate to say this, but after the last time you left, the comments sections in the posts became far more harmonious with civil disagreements rarely spilling over into nonsensical BS. That is the spirit of the League, not you acting like an asshole.

        I’ll take it from Erik. I won’t take it from you, Chris.

        When you are out of line, you most certainly will take it from anyone that dishes it out provided it’s appropriate. This is non-negotiable. You’re going to certainly take it from me. This is even more non-negotiable.

        I propose to take a self-imposed penalty, as I once did, when I made another error in judgement. I’ll be back in a week, maybe longer. This is no GBCW, I might yet have something to say here, again, soon. Just not now. I think I’ve earned this time out and it’s best for everyone if I take it.

        As you can tell, I’ve already lost patience with all of this. Please pardon me if I sound a bit too harsh here, but I feel to need to make a few clarifications.

        First, I couldn’t give a flying fish about your idiotic proposals. Who the hell do you think you are even suggesting that you can make one to any of us after the conduct you exhibited here? In my professional life, my response to something like that is fish off. Personally, I would have made it at least a month and most likely longer, not because of the initial comment but your attitude.

        Second, posting here is a privilege that can be revoked. We don’t like being in situations where we feel a need to revoke them, but we will and have when necessary. We haven’t considered that approach to my knowledge, but please don’t take the fact that you’d be welcomed back for granted. This episode was the straw that broke my back. It’s less about the initial comment and more about your attitude towards other people. On it’s worst days, it’s toxic. On those days, I wish you wouldn’t post at all.

        Third, if in the event you do return, I will take a more aggressive stance with you. I really didn’t want to do that given that other commenters seem to know how to deal with you. You’ve never cared much for the commenting policy except when people are allegedly violating it dealing with you.

        No more. You are going to be held to the same standard as everyone else. This act is going to stop if there is any chance of you having a sustainable presence here.

        If this offends you, too bad. It needed to be said. Frankly, I should have said this months ago. I’m sorry that League readers had to suffer through this and that I’ve made my feelings public, but the League readers need to know that people here have absolutely little tolerance for idiotic bullshit and will take very strong steps to keep the original spirit of this place alive.

        I’m not going to see good commenters leave this place so one person can pretend the comments section is his own little sandbox where he gets to make the rules and take the ball home when he wants………

        Lastly, BlaiseP, on your best days, you’re everything this place strives for. On your worst days, you’re everything we want to avoid. I take no pleasure in writing this, but what I’ve seen from you tarnishes what we are trying to accomplish. I can’t accept this any longer.Report

  7. All I have to say is included here:

    Report

  8. Rather than scatter comments here and there, I’ll just dump it all down here.

    We play the regular season because the Heat is one Lebron slip and torn ACL away from not being nearly as good as they look now.

    If I can fix just one thing about the NBA, it’s the officiating. If it’s a foul in the first minute, it’s a foul in the last minute. If it’s a foul in the first game of the season, it’s a foul in the seventh game of the Finals. If it’s a foul when the guy off the end of the bench does it to Lebron, it’s a foul when Lebron does it to that guy.

    I’d like to see the Spanish soccer version of basketball commentary. I’m curious how many “GOOOAAALLL” calls it would take me to throw the remote control at the screen.Report

  9. Avatar Jaybird says:

    So I take it that “looks like you have a shot this year!” would be a good comment for my friend who is a crazy Spurs fan?Report

  10. Avatar Chris says:

    So I was just thinking about dunks, when I remembered something from my playin’ days. When I was a freshman in high school, our basketball coach had a simple rule: if your man dunks, you are coming out of the game. This rule was rigorously enforced. The reason he had this rule was also simple: dunks are demoralizing. At the high school level, a dunk tells you that an opposing player is better, or at least more athletic, than many, if not most of the guys on your team. At any level, a dunk tells you that you have failed defensively, individually and as a team. And boy do they energize a home crowd.

    Dunks derive this demoralizing power from their difficulty. The vast majority of us cannot dunk, and most of us who can are not capable of creating opportunities to do so in a game. It is not only a difficult athletic feat, it is a difficult game skill. So dunks are rare, even among the most skilled and athletic players in the world (according to 82 games, dunks accounted for between three and six percent of most NBA team’s field goal attempts last season; a quick scan of previous seasons suggests that this has not really changed in at least the last decade). Dunks energize a crowd, then, because they are rare, demoralizing, and display superior levels of skill and athleticism.

    What’s more, even at the NBA level, the vast majority of dunks are the result of teamwork, not individual play. According to 82 games in the 2002-2003 season, 75% of dunks resulted in an assist being credited, a significantly higher percentage than those for jump shots and “close” shots (layups). Rarely can a player dunk by simply beating his defender one-on-one. Defenses are just too good at rotating and switching, particularly in the paint. Way more often than not, dunking is good team basketball.Report

    • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Chris says:

      Really great point. At my physical apex, about halfway through college, I could dunk a tennis ball with a running start. I got it down maybe half the time and it had to be completely uncontested or molested. So, physically, yea, it’s hard.

      While warming up for pickup a year or so ago, a friend and I did some dunks on an 8 foot rim. Holy crap, it was still really hard. Anything other than a basic two handed dunk was impossible. Not because of the height, but the difficulty of getting all the moving parts in perfect sync. I ended up messing up my shoulder such that it hurt for a few weeks.

      Dunking is hard as shit. When guys make it look effortless… damn…Report

      • Avatar Chris in reply to Kazzy says:

        When I was in high school and early college, I could dunk a basketball, unmolested, mostly without dribbling (I was able to do it dribbling a few times). I could dunk a tennis ball without a running start, and sometimes a soccer ball. The most difficult part of dunking the basketball, particularly since I needed a running start to get it over the rim, was palming it. As often as not, I lost the ball before I got it to the rim.

        I actually tried to dunk in a game once, during summer league in high school. I can see it now very clearly: I was just behind the three point line, a little to the left of the top of the key, and I used a pump fake to beat my man to the center of the lane, which I found wide open. So I tried to dunk it, and while my hand grabbed the rim, the ball came nowhere near it. I got ribbed about it for some time… things like, “Uh oh, Chris is going to dunk it. Cover your head!” as I went in for a layup in practice.Report

      • Avatar Mike Dwyer in reply to Kazzy says:

        Once in high school I jumped so high that I got at least 2 inches of net… and I am 6 feet tall.

        Yes, it’s true, white men can jump.Report

      • Avatar Mike Schilling in reply to Kazzy says:

        Really great point. At my physical apex, about halfway through college, I could dunk a tennis ball with a running start.

        Me too. Easy.

        (You mean over the tennis court net, right?)Report

      • Avatar Michael Cain in reply to Kazzy says:

        When guys make it look effortless… damn…

        Way back when I worked at Bell Labs after grad school, a group of us played pick-up ball at the local park in the summer. One black guy from North Carolina was only about 5’10”, but he could palm the ball and had an insane vertical leap. The first time I saw him casually pick up the ball one-handed, take two steps and go up and jam it home… damn is exactly the right word.Report

  11. Avatar Tod Kelly says:

    So last night my older son and I were watching the Laker game, and about midway through he turned to me and said, “You know what the worst part of this game is? I can’t yell at the Mike D’ Antoni for not benching Jodie Meeks, because he’s the second best player on the Lakers now. Jodie Meeks, dad. Jodie Meeks.”

    ‘Nuff said.Report

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