Doodled to look like ME, not Jesus Christ in case you're confused. Although Jesus came back too, one time....

My fellow internets,

Jon Smith is officially getting back on the wagon with the Association. This is the first of many steps toward reconciliation. My statement to the NBA is thus: “You don’t have to sleep on the couch anymore. …Let’s stay together for the kids.” So I’m not going out of my way to watch NBA basketball but I’ll treat it like anything else on TV or the internet, I will pay as much attention to it as any other sports fan without an NBA franchise would(to those who don’t know me, I am a Seattleite. Born and raised Sonics fan, pretty bitter).

Nothing has changed between myself and the likes of David Stern and Howard Schultz. Those creeps can eat a truckload of dicks in Hell, I really hope I never see Howard Schultz around town…don’t know what I’d do. Slim chance of that though, as I have no life and rarely go downtown. So you’re lucky Howie!

So as I slowly re-acclimate myself with Napoleon’s traveling circus, I will need to lean once again upon Todd Slater: the nerd prince of basketball, to help navigate these murky waters. 

The following is an Email conversation between Todd and I:

ME: It cannot be denied that due to officiating or this generation of players, this league is soft. Not nearly as aggressive, not nearly as tough to score especially in the paint as it was in the glory days of Jordan/Magic/Bird BUT It’s nice to see one young man taking advantage of this generations soft defense: BLAKE GRIFFIN. How’s that for a segue?? This kid is the closest thing to Shawn Kemp we’ve seen since….Shawn Kemp. Not quite as powerful but just as electrifying and unstoppable, more athletic.
Is this the usual cock tease fans get from the Clippers every 3-4 years or do you think Blake can break through and make the Clip show a contender?

Todd: Well, they haven’t had a tease this big in a long while.  I have to say I’d exercise *some* caution regarding Blake and here’s why:  I’m weary of freak athletes because when the hops fade they fade fast.  If your game revolves around jumping over everyone in the gym you’re going to deal with alot of wear and tear on the treads.  Your chances of getting injured exponentially increase if you play the way he does year after year.  Remember how different Vince Carter’s game was when he came into the league versus now?  To Vince’s credit he’s still a useful player, but Air Canada doesn’t fly nearly as high as it used to.  Blake’s doing the right thing, he’s the best athlete on the court and he uses it to his advantage every possession.  In the offseason, he needs to develop a better mid-range game and continue to build his fundamentals so that he’s ready to evolve into something else in 6-7 years or maybe sooner should an injury occur.  I’d trade great fundamentals for athleticism every time tho… see Tim Duncan and Dirk Nowitzki.

ME: Wanted to start with Blake because that’s kind of the catalyst for my getting back into NBA fandom. What else is there to be excited about, what’s Todd Slater excited about? Specific players or teams getting hot? Is there a dark horse you like to win this year? Seems like the Celtics and Lakers are old and vulnerable.

Todd: So many things, just gonna do a stream of conscious here: Grant Hill continuing to defy critics and turn back the clock for the Suns, DJ Augustin coming into his own under Paul Silas in Charlotte, Darko Milicic starting and playing pretty damn well for Minnesota (love the comeback story), Mike Beasley doing his best Carmelo impersonation after being traded away for a bag of chips, Chris Paul bouncing back from an injury riddled 2010 to be an MVP candidate this year, Elton Brand quietly returning to form after multiple surgeries, Kevin Durant becoming a top 3 player in the league… he is a true superstar, Raymond Felton playing like an all-star, Monta Ellis looking like Allen Iverson, Deron Williams being the best point guard in the league, LaMarcus Aldridge showing off all his work in the offseason, Danilo Gallinari showing that smoooooth stroke (despite looking semi cross-eyed), Russ Westbrook melting faces, Derrick Rose showing off the range (god he’s fun to watch), Brandon Jennings breaking ankles and John Wall being the fast human in the world.
As far as dark horses I’d have to pick the Bulls.  They’ve been missing Noah for months now and should be ready to roll when he returns.  Boozer has been as advertised and Rose is an MVP candidate.  Deng looks really nice as a third option too and is having a great year.

The Lakers will turn it on when they need to like always.  Jerry West had an interesting quote about their defense this week: “If there’s a loose ball now, how often do they get it? The reason you ‘can’t play defense’ is because you can’t! …I don’t think the Lakers will be good for much longer. You can keep a car running for a long time by changing the tires, etc. You can’t change a player’s tires.”

I think it’s Celts and Spurs in the finals.  Spurs win it all.

ME: Boozer should have stayed in Cleveland, would have had a ring by now. Yeah I’ve noticed the Bulls have been building a beast in the shadow of the Lebron shenanigans.
Oh yeah, so part of me being back on the NBA wagon will mean I’ll have to get back in the Gigposters Fantasy League. Does Dave run that league? Do YOU run it now? Will there be room for me next year?

Todd: This guy in Cali runs it, I’ll make sure you get in next year if you want.

ME: How are your Mav’s doing?

Todd: Kinda just trucking along.  I think they make a splash at the trade deadline.  I’m confident Cuban will always put out a quality product.

ME: Hey is Cuban involved in the UFL?? That’s his league right? I think it kinda has a chance, and will benefit from a lockout in the NFL.

Todd: Well, he’s suing them right now for 5 million for an unpaid loan so I dunno where he stands.  UFL fantasy football?  That would be hilarious… gotta get our fix somehow.

ME: Shit, I got dibs on Maurice Clarett!

Given you did a GaGa poster, thought you’d like to know I’m doing a Ke$ha poster….

So I’m watching this Mavs/Celtics game tonight, who is this small foreign looking Guard you have?…I’m not talking about Jason Kidd, Ha!

Todd: That my friend is Jose Juan Barea, better known as the Puerto Rican AI (Allen Iverson), he goes by JJ for short.

He has some nice games every now and again.  He’s a good spark plug type guy.  A real fan fave too.
Ke$sha!  That sounds pretty fun.  Make her look super slutty and hot.
ME: Ahhh, I was gonna guess Sarunas Marciulionis. I forgot your coach is Rick Carlisle, the internet agrees he looks like Jim Carrey but I also kinda think he looks like a liiiiitle bit like George Jones.
Shit I think that’s all the time we have, Todd. I’ll get back with you around tourney time. Good win for your Mav’s though, that’s the first NBA game I actually watched to the end in years….weird seeing Tyson Chandler as an old stiff now, he was always one of those straight out of high school baby face busts for years, like a homeless man’s Kevin Garnett. Oh wait Kevin Garnett is old now too. Yoi.

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