Philly Beats L.A., Proves Process is Working

Steve Kerr recently crowned the Boston Celtics Eastern Conference team of the future. But if I may quote former Slam Dunk Champion Brent Barry, I’ll say there are a few people in Philadelphia that may disagree with Kerr’s prediction.

So I guess that’s less of a quote, and more a paraphrase. Either way, Brent Barry is right about Philadelphia. When discussing the rising suns in the east, while the shadow of Lebron still looms large, there are a few bright spots, players that could burst into superstars, superstars that could explode into supernovas and carry their team to the championship. Right now it’s hard to know which team will come rise after the sunset of Cleveland. Anything can happen in the NBA. Players get hurt. Players start to dislike each other. Players start a modeling career than lose their jump shot. Iggy Azalea. Sorry Nick young. (I thought for a second that Nick Young had had a 50 point game, but no. Only 43 in 2011.) Continue reading “Philly Beats L.A., Proves Process is Working”

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March Madness 2012: Anthony Davis and 15 Great Stat-Stuffers in NCAA History

Anthony Davis, who just celebrated his 19th birthday this March, has already been called one of the greatest shot-blockers of all time.

Not bad for a guy who’s only just been able to buy tickets to R-rated movies.

But he does more than that. The 6’10” center for the nation’s top-ranked team and Final Four favorite Kentucky Wildcats also leads the squad in scoring and rebounding.

With that sort of skill in the middle, it’s championship or bust for Kentucky, who advanced to the Sweet 16 yesterday, where they will meet the Indiana Hoosiers.

But is Davis really one of the best to play college basketball?

This slideshow will look at some of the best stat-stuffing big men from the last 25 years of college hoops, and how each one fared in March.

By the end, you can decide for yourself if Davis belongs in such talented company.

From the 2010 through the 2012 seasons, I wrote as a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report covering the NBA, and The Golden State Warriors beat. Read the full article here.

NBA All-Star Slam Dunk Contest 2012: Why It Was the Worst Ever

NBA All-Star Weekend wrapped up with a game worth remembering as Kobe Bryant officially became the greatest All-Star game scorer of all-time, after passing Michael Jordan’s 262-point mark.

Fans needed to witness a milestone like that on Sunday night as Saturday night will surely be remembered for another, less prestigious one—the worst Dunk Contest of all-time.

From the 2010 through the 2012 seasons, I wrote as a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report covering the NBA, and The Golden State Warriors beat. Read the full article here.

Jeremy Lin: What Linsanity Teaches About American Media

Have you heard about this guy Jeremy Lin? He is the point guard for the New York Knicks and he’s supposed to be quite the basketball player.

With all the attention he’s been getting in the past weeks, he must be. Lately, it seems like anybody with half a brain and a working knowledge of the English alphabet has been writing about what Lin does, what Lin means, and what Lin says about the American dream.

Well, I’ve got half a brain and fancy myself a writer, so that makes it my duty—and my pleasure, really—to contribute to what Janet Malcolm called that old, uncanny zeitgeist, by commenting on the latest flavor.

Continue reading “Jeremy Lin: What Linsanity Teaches About American Media”

Chris Paul Trade: Why the Clippers Are No Longer the “Other” Los Angeles Team

It’s been said youth is wasted on the young. But in the case of the Los Angeles Clippers, with the addition of All-Star point guard Chris Paul, youth will be about as wasteful as a winning lottery ticket.

In gaining Paul, 26, from the New Orleans Hornets for Eric Gordon, Chris Kaman and Al-Farouq Aminu, the Clippers add a proven leader and superstar to a starting line that includes reigning NBA Rookie of the Year Blake Griffin, 22, and ever-improving center DeAndre Jordan, 23.

The addition of veterans Chauncey Billups and Caron Butler as well provides the kind of stable levelheadedness the Clippers need to balance their explosive young talent and keep the team working towards their ultimate goal, which at this point has to be home-court advantage in Round 1 of the playoffs.

From the 2010 through the 2012 seasons, I wrote as a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report covering the NBA, and The Golden State Warriors beat. Read the full article here.

College Basketball 2011: 5 Superstars Who Won’t Be Drafted

In these past few months of NBA prohibition, you could say I’ve taken to drinking mouthwash by watching Euro League basketball.

In the minds of most American basketball fans, the Euro Leagues rank somewhere below the highest level of AAU competition and somewhere above the WNBA.

It just isn’t the NBA, so it isn’t given much thought. But there are, as I have now seen, plenty of talented players competing overseas on a daily basis.

Omar Cook plays for Italy’s EA7 team. In the 2000-01 college basketball season, Cook looked like the next great New York City point guard to play for St. Johns.

In his freshman season, he averaged over 15 points and eight assists per game. He even broke the Red Storm’s single game assists record, previously held by Mark Jackson.

Cook entered the NBA Draft after his freshman season, and now he is remembered less for his powerful cross-over and precise passing and more as an example of what can go wrong if a young man turns pro when he isn’t ready.

Which isn’t fair.

From the 2010 through the 2012 seasons, I wrote as a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report covering the NBA, and The Golden State Warriors beat. Read the full article here.

UConn Basketball: The Top 50 Players in School History

Ranking the top 50 players in any school’s history is not an easy task.

The record books can only tell you so much, and how can you pass judgement on the many players you have never seen play before?

But, it is fun to give it a shot, especially for a program like UConn, with such a young core of talent. We could be watching history in action as the Huskies begin their run at a second straight national championship.

Will any of the current Huskies rank higher on this list in the years to come?

Time will tell. But in the meantime, let’s take a look back at the 50 greatest players in the long history of UConn basketball.

From the 2010 through the 2012 seasons, I wrote as a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report covering the NBA, and The Golden State Warriors beat. Read the full article here.