Also see links to all the previews at CelticsBlog.comno comments
Tom: Indy Cornrows
As we march closer to the start of the NBA Season, blogger from around the league continue to post their season previews. Here's the latest sampling from blogs representing the Southwest Division teams.
Jake Kerr: Mavs Moneyball
grungedave and UofTOrange: The Dream Shake
Joshua Coleman: 3 Shades of Blue
San Antonio Spurs
Graydon Gordian: 48 Minutes of Hell
Also see links to all the previews at CelticsBlog.comno comments
As the 2008-09 NBA Season quickly approaches, bloggers from around the league are posting season previews for their respective teams. Here's the first of six sets of links covering the teams from the Atlantic Division.
New Jersey Nets
Dennis Velasco: About Basketball
As far as I know, today is the first official "NBA Stadiums Blog Day," concocted by Nate Jones over at JONES ON THE NBA.
It would seem logical then that I pay homage to Target Center, right? After all, it is the arena of our home team. True, I've had some good times at Target Center, but it's really not a super, duper, special arena. Plus, everyone already knows all my good stories at Target Center. Honestly, other than NBA City, the Target Center is blah, boring, and drab nothing too state of the art. So... with that said, I'd like to give a shoutout to the only other NBA Arena that I've ever attended: The Staples Center in Los Angeles, California:
Name: Staples Center
Opened: October 17, 1999
Construction cost: $375 Million USD
- Basketball: 18,997
- Hockey/Arena Football: 18,118
- Los Angeles Lakers (NBA) (1999-present)
- Los Angeles Clippers (NBA) (1999-present)
- Los Angeles Sparks (WNBA) (2001-present)
- Los Angeles Kings (NHL) (1999-present)
- Los Angeles Avengers (AFL) (2000-present)
- Los Angeles D-Fenders (D-League) (2006-present)
Naming Rights: Staples, Inc. paid $100,000,000 for 20 years.
(Click "Read More..." to find out about College Wolf's road trip to the Staples Center.)
Chris Paul Deserves the MVP Award This Season...
Word on the street is that Kobe Bryant will be winning his first ever league MVP award this season. Do I think this is the correct choice? Hell and no I don't. In a season where you could make legitimate arguments for four different players (KG, LeBron, CP3, Kobe), Kobe would have been my last choice out of the "Big Four." Of the said stars, here's how I personally ranked them with my Blogger MVP/ROY vote: 1) KG, 2) CP3, 3) LeBron, 4) Kobe. It's not so much that I hate Kobe Bryant, but I just don't think he deserved it this season (more on that later.) I would like to say, I voted before the regular season was over, and was slightly swayed by Bill Simmons "KG4MVP Love Fest" article. Upon further review and if I could do it again, I think I would now go Paul first and KG second. Regardless, any of these four guys would have probably won the award the past 3 seasons... that's how amazing they all have been playing.
Apropos of nothing, today is Chris Paul's 23rd birthday. What does this have to do with anything you ask? Well, first off, I can't believe this young stud is only 23 years old. He plays like an established veteran, and gun to my head, I'd say he's the best PG in the entire league. Also, it happens to be "Chris Paul Appreciation Day." So, I am comprising this article in honor of his birthday, and making a case as to why Kobe Bryant is the wrongful MVP on the Association.
(Click "Read More..." to continue.)no comments
Some of you TWolvesBlog faithful may remember the article I posted in October about my friend Dan Occhiogrosso running the New York City Marathon while dribbling a basketball to raise money for AIDS orphans. Well, Dan successfully completed the marathon in a solid four and a half hours, despite multiple attempts by fellow-runners to strip him of the ball, and managed to raise $3,000 for the Bethsada Outreach in South Africa. However, the story does not stop there. After hearing about his escapades, someone at Spalding decided to enter him into a photo contest run by the company. The rules were that the photo had to show you using a Spalding basketball. Unsurprisingly, the photo of Dan dribbling his way through the streets of New York won the contest and he was awarded the prize of a trip to Washington D.C. to attend a Wizards game and have a pre-game meet and greet session with Gilbert Arenas.
Dan was allowed to select a friend to go on the trip with him, and it just so happens that I was the person who got to tag along with him to meet Agent Zero. Before the game we got to enter the Verizon Center through the VIP entrance and take an elevator ride down to the bowels of the stadium. We then walked out through the tunnel and onto the Wizards' court where several of the Miami Heat players were warming up. This was my second time down on an NBA court before a game, thanks to the Wolves' generosity back in 2004, and let me tell you that it's a surreal experience every time. You can't fully appreciate how enormous the players in this league are until you're standing right next to them. There were two things worth noting from our time on the floor. The first was that a loose ball came rolling right by my feet as we were walking past the Heat shoot-around. I picked it up and passed it back to Stephane Lasme, who said "Thanks" and continued to warm up. I know what you're thinking - "Who's Stephane Lasme?". Yeah, I had no idea either until I got back home and was able to figure it out via the internet. However, the point is that I passed a basketball to an NBA player, and even if that player is only one rung above Ndudi Ebi on the NBA totem pole, that's still pretty cool. The other thing of note is that I was shocked to discover that the Miami Heat apparently have a 12-year old on their roster.
It's Chris Quinn, their rookie PG from Notre Dame. I know that Quinn could easily be pushing 14 based on the above photograph, but he looks even younger in person. Much to my surprise, Quinn started the game for Miami and played a good game, scoring 24 points. I have a feeling that his playing for the Heat had a lot to do with his scoring output, as somebody's got to put the ball through the hoop, but he was fairly impressive nonetheless.
Anyway, after taking in the shootaround, we were ushered into the hallway just outside the Wizard's locker room and out came Gilbert Arenas. He was nice and gave both me and Dan the hug/handshake move and talked to us for a bit. Although, I do have to wonder how much attention he was actually paying to the encounter, because he gave me the hug/handshake move three different times over the course of our three minute encounter. The first was when he came out - he gave Dan one and then me one. Then like fifteen seconds later, I think he forgot that he already did it and gave me another one. Then after Dan told him about winning the photo contest, he said, "And this is my friend, Derek, who I brought along with me." Gilbert, then said "What's his name? Berek?" Dan said, "No, it's Derek", and then Gilbert gave me the third hug/handshake. After spending just a few seconds with him, you could definitely tell that Gilbert was the funny/quirky guy we've all come to know him as. Unfortunatly, I never did get to ask him about his thoughts on joining the Wolves in 2008-09. I could tell that this wasn't going to be a long ordeal and wanted to let Dan have his chance to talk to Gilbert seeing as he was the guy who won the contest. After signing a ball and a t-shirt for Dan and taking a photo with each of us, it was over and he headed back to the locker room.
One thing that did surprise me about Gilbert is that he's not that big of a guy. When I met Garnett and Duncan they were both just monstrous. Even T-Mac was surprisingly large. Gilbert just seemed like a "tall" guy, not this massive hulking giant. As we exited the hallway, Caron Butler was heading towards the locker room and he was suprisingly massive. I would have never guessed him to be as tall and bulky as he was.
The game itself wasn't overly exhillerating, as the Wiz trounced the lowly Heat. We had seats in the second row all the way in the corner and one of the Wizards security guards kept saying "I didn't know we were playing a CBA team tonight!" Probably the biggest highlight of the game for me was getting to boo Ricky Davis and Mark Blount. The Wizards home crowd is far from loud, so I'm pretty sure my voice carried enough to where they could hear me. The best was when Blount put up a shot which, I kid you not, missed the rim by a good five feet. I just sat in awe the entire time, wondering how Kevin McHale was able to fleece the Heat of a 1st round pick for these two locker room malignancies.
So that basically sums up the night. It was a cool experience, but meeting Gilbert definitely shouldn't overshadow the real reason why we were on the trip - the orphans in South Africa that Dan was trying to help. You can find out more about the various ways he's using basketball to raise awareness and funds for AIDS orphans on his site, www.ballforlives.com. It's a real problem in this world that often gets overlooked. I encourage any of you who are reading this to take a moment to learn more about the Bethsada Outreach and consider making a donation. We have it amazingly good in this country and there are millions of less fortuate children out there who's lives can be changed through just a small amount of generosity.no comments
Blogger MVP/ROY Rankings Round 8
TWolvesBlog was honored to host this round's NBA MVP and ROY Blogpoll. The rankings are comprised of votes by a highly esteemed panel of bloggers who throw darts to determine their picks every two weeks. Points are granted for each vote in a descending scale thus a first place vote in the MVP rankings counted for ten points, second place was good for nine points, third place counted for eight and so on. In the ROY rankings a first place vote counted for five points as only five rookies are ranked. Second place gets four points, and so on.
Our esteemed panel:
College Wolf from TWolves Blog (Bonk from TWolvesblog is voting and commenting in my stead for this edition, being that I am running things.)
Lee and Dave from The Dream Shake
David from 20 Second Time Out
Adam from Raptors HQ
Spartacus from 3 Shades of Blue
Seth from Posting and Toasting
Don from With Malice...
Tom from Sactown Royalty
Josh from Dinosty
Steve and Tom from CelticsBlog
Mike from Bullets Forever
Ben from Third Quarter Collapse
Jeremy from Pick Axe and Roll
Brett from Queen City Hoops
The scholars from We Rite Goode
Matt and Corndogg from Hardwood Paroxysm
Tom from Indy Cornrows
Jeramey from The Bratwurst
Ricky from Sixers 4 Guidos (He tried to participate but his votes/emails kept getting swallowed up in a mystic blogospherial void.)
The man, the myth, the legend... Alex from Brew Hoop
MVP voting is done on a 10 point scale, for the rookies its 5 points. We had a total of 20 participants for this eighth edition.
To check out previous rounds of voting, and the results:
Round 1: Hosted by Brewhoop
Round 2: Hosted by Clips Nation
Round 3: Hosted by 3 Shades of Blue
Round 4: Hosted by Sixers 4 Guidos
Round 5: Hosted by Pick Axe and Roll
Round 6: Hosted by Hardwood Paroxysm
Round 7: Hosted by Celticsblog
(Click on the "Read More..." button to view the rankings and results for this Eighth Edition of the MVP/ROY Rankings)no comments
I've just launched a new Minnesota Twins site with Alex Halsted, one of my esteemed competitors in the Battle of the Bloggers. It's by far one of the most advanced sports blogs on the internet - even more than goold old TWolves Blog. (Don't worry, updates are coming!) In addition to the traditional blog format, we've put together a great forum, as well as a MySpace/Facebook-ish area for our members called "The Clubhouse". Alex has also done a phenomenal job of crunching stats and putting together pages for every player in the Twins organization from the Majors all the way down to the smallest of the Minor Leagues. I'm not a baseball fanatic, so I'll admit I didn't even know you could go lower than Single A. Well, you can, and Alex even has stats for all of them. It's really a goldmine if you're a Twins junkie.
Again the URL is www.twins-territory.com (Don't forget the hyphen!) Please check it out if you're a Twins fan - you won't be disappointed!
CW & Bonk's 07-08 Slam Dunk Contest Recap
It's the All-Star weekend event that we've all been waiting for, the Wham Bam Thankyou Mam Slam Dunk Contest. Bonk and I will presenting you the
drunken ramblings very educated and insightful analysis from Saturday night's contest in all it's glory. Who had the goods and truly measured up? If you are reading this, you already know who won... but were they worthy of being crowned champion? After meeting the contestants, we've got our very own recap of last night's festivities below.
(Click "Read More..." for our review of this year's Slam Dunk Contest.)no comments