That's right, only 952,000 shopping days until Christmas, and it's never too early to start thinking about which teams have made themselves likely to find things that sparkle in the stocking and which are looking at some nasty lung irritation if they were to breathe in the contents of said stocking.
Houston is the team that comes to mind first for me as far as those who could take steps onward and upward. Yes, yes, I understand that I sound like "the boy who cried West champs" again, but Ron-Ron (Artest, not Tillery) could very well be that hackneyed cliche of "missing piece". If Shane Battier thinks that playing against Ron inside is "like trying to push an oak tree", Captain Headcase should really be able to help the Rockets shut folks down like Sturgis after a DEA sweep. The potential contributions of Brent "who took the tennis balls off my walker" Barry should not be underestimated-he can still sink a well-timed dagger, and needless to say, he's not exactly short on winning experience. I feel quite sure, however, that newly-bestowed Dr. Zack will be upset that he'll not get to see the infamous Bobby Jackup do that Jackie-Chan-esque leg kick whilst tossing a lump of baked clay in the general direction of the basket.
Wait a minute-I forgot about TMac's back and shoulder and Yao's legs.
Houston may very well=first round fodderage again. It'll be a shame, 'cuz they're a team I do like to watch, but the injury bug by which they seem to be perpetually bitten is about the size of the ants in the original movie "Them" (younguns, look it up-great old cheesy horror film).
Portland. Boy, could they be really, really good. Could be the team I'm jonesin' to watch the most (except my Grizz, of course). This Fernandez cat has to learn to use his size to his advantage in the NBA and Bill Russell Sr. has to keep that knee intact, and look out world. Added Bayless and Batum, Diogu can score a bit inside (which they'll need, BTW), they still got some guy named Roy somebody-or-other.
And they got rid of Jarrett Jack. That ain't gonna hurt either.
The Sixers. Elton. That's all I gotta say there. Except "Mareese Speights". He's got some size, and he'll be learning from one of the best currently around.
Now, for my favorite of the lump-of-coal group:
Denver. Now I'll put it right out there that I don't like their attitude as a team, but from as objective a perspective as my feeble mind can muster, they're looking about as good as an Amy Winehouse lung x-ray. Nene and Kenyon put together do not possess the structural integrity of the Erector Set "skyscraper" I built on my carpeted livingroom floor in 1977. Lost one of the best one-on-one interior defenders of this era (sorry Grizz fans, I don't mean Bobby Jones) and their own Mr. Hustle, the Enforcer from south of the border, Eduardo Najera.
And they signed Dahntay and the Birdman of Bogota. HURTIN.
Enough spewing for today. I've gotta blow this joint (certain players who cannot be named, don't get so excited-that's just a figure of speech) and go remove all the sharp objects from Spartacus' dwelling in case the Randolph deal actually transpires (which, BTW, I think it will not).
Friday, September 12, 2008