Friday, December 9, 2011

Back in business (or not)

In case you hadn't heard, the League vetoed Chris Paul's move from the New Orleans Hornets to the LA Lakers, which would also have sent Pau Gasol from LA to the Houston Rockets, Lamar Odom from LA to NOLA and a load of Houston players to the Bayou. And everyone is up in arms.

So what? They've got every right to stop that trade. They don't want to lose their best player. Not only would they be losing a franchise player, but not getting one in return. No other team would have done that because they're too scared that they'll get another LeBron James situation.

And you know what? They will. Although I admire the NBA's stance on keeping your best player (and its unadulterated anti-Lakers stance), they are ultimately shooting themselves in the foot here. The only way they won't lose CP3 for nothing next summer is to win the title, and even David Stern can't orchestrate that.

The real loser in all this is Dan Gilbert, who wrote an email to Stern (possibly in Comic Sans) stating his dislike of this trade. The Cleveland owner needs to grow up. Sorry Dan that LeBron left you like that, but it happened. And if you had done what the Hornets were proposing to do, you might not have been in the mess you're in now.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Without wanting to tempt fate, what with the new CBA still to be signed, here are some predictions for this season. Bear in mind that my knowledge comes from reading and watching things during this recent off season, playing NBA2K11 and the Michael Jordan era. Yes, it's an amateur talking.

1. The Heat will win the title, and in style: Dwyane, LeBron and Chris will be going hell for leather this season and if they can get a new point guard or centre, then they will do it in style. I wouldn't be surprised if you saw one of the best records ever. They have a point to prove.

2. The Thunder will get to the Finals: Durant and Westbrook are two of the league's best players and James Harden is looking pretty good too. When it comes to the West, the other contenders are the Mavericks and the Lakers. Both might find it difficult to bring in new players or re-sign some older ones, especially if they want to get under the salary cap in a couple of years time. Dirk and Kobe aren't getting any younger, and the triple headers might take their toll.

3. Both the Clippers and the Timberwolves will make the play-offs: Griffin and the Clippers are one player away from the play-offs - maybe they'll get that player in the upcoming free agency period (Go on Nene, you know you want to live in LA). The Timberwolves are more of an outside bet. Love is a superstar in the making, Beasley is great on his day and I hear Derrick Williams is THE rookie this year. And if their little Spaniard works his magic, you've got a good team.

4. LeBron will win MVP: And Finals MVP. He is going to blow everyone out of the water this season. The real start of the legacy.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Deal (almost) done

There is a deal. It is tentative but, as someone said, these guys wouldn't take a deal to their parties that they didn't think could be used.

So the plan seems to be to open the doors next week, pull on the jerseys on 9th December, at which time a few people could be moving around, and then start the 66-game season on Christmas Day. Whether my parents will buy ESPN for that day remains to be seen. There is undoubtedly a lot of legal thingamijigs to be done before the doors open what with calling off the legal fight, reforming the union, taking a vote etc, but we're almost there.

Also, the ins and outs of the CBA will be most likely released at the beginning of next week and then we will know which teams have the scope to trade, sign or release players.

The free agency isn't the best in the world but the most interesting area is that of Nene and the Denver Nuggets. They need some new players and have the cap space to do it, but will the big Brazilian wait to see who they have in mind before resigning in Denver? The Nuggets are now in desperate need of a power forward and it's hard to find a really decent one in the list. Shane Battier will probably stay in Memphis and it's hard to see anyone leaving the Mavericks, unless of course there's no room in the cap.

Rumours are finally allowed to be talked about, even though it didn't stop anyone before, and come the end of next week, that's all you'll here.

Happy Days.

Monday, November 21, 2011

No news is bad news

A week on from the Players' meeting that effectively destroyed any chances of seeing any basketball this year and perhaps most of next year, there is very little to report on.

Two things which might be of significance are a couple of players pursuing overseas work and Michael Goldberg, head of the NBA Coaches Association, speaking out.

If players like Dwyane Wade and Kevin Durant really are looking to play in Europe, then this could be the kick up the arse that David Stern needs to get the talks going again. Both sides are attempting not to look weak by staying away from the phone.

The coaches have been largely forgotten in all this. Are they part of the owners or the players? It's difficult to tell. They're not allowed to talk to the players, and get fined if they do, but they are also not getting paid. Another victim of this whole mess.

Maybe a lost season wouldn't be so bad. One side would have to come back with their tails between their legs and it would hopefully mean that nothing like this will happen again. However, the problem is that if both sides resign to losing the season, we may not get any talks until the spring at the earliest.

Urgency has not been either sides strong point up until now, hence the resignation that buying NBA2k12 will be the only way to see any action this year.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The day after

Well after yesterday's hoohah, it's time to take stock.

Word on the street is that the impending non-season is a senseless waste. Virtually all the writers throughout the world have decided that there is no sympathy with either side and this whole business could have easily been avoided. The players are risking far more than they need to while David Stern pushed them just that little too far, causing the players to snap and trash their bedroom.

The legalities are far too complicated to explain but it does seem that the NBPA (NBTA?) and their actions could now yield more activity than the Stern/Hunter meetings, which were organised like two old friends who didn't really want to see each other.

There could be action before the end of the week. But don't hold your breath for a season.

How the NBA will look after all this, we don't know. The only silver lining out of this cumulonimbus is that we should never see this happen again.

Monday, November 14, 2011

To the courts

That's the courts, not the court.

The matter is now in the hands of the lawyers. We'll see you next year.

Gather round, children

At this moment, a group of tall well-paid men have gathered somewhere in New York City to decide whether they want to work soon.

Some of them will be well informed and some won't.

Some of them will have already made up their minds last night and some won't.

Some of them want to play basketball this year in a professional league. Correction, all of them want to play basketball in a professional league. If they don't, much like if an owner doesn't want a NBA season, then they have no business being there.

Whatever the result of today's meeting, we can only hope that each and every player rep makes an informed decision and also states clearly to each and every player the reasons for their decision. Come tomorrow, if there are any players still confused as to the deal then it will be a sad day.

We want basketball, but at this moment, the above is all we can ask for.