Billy Beane, Dwyane Wade, Football, LeBron James, Lew Wolff, MLB, NBA, NFL, Oakland Athletics, Sports, Sports & Social commentary, Terrelle Pryor, Uncategorized

Can’t Knock The Hustle …………


Can’t Knock The Hustle …………….

Well in the aftermath of the NBA Finals series loss it seems just about everyone has an opinion on what went wrong for the Miami Heat . I see it as nothing more than the following ….. the fans were sold a bill of goods and it was hyped up with amped up so completely that a snake oil salesman couldn’t have done a better job. Pat Riley sold this crap for all it was worth and LeBron James and Dwyane Wade simply made us all believe that the team could get by on simply turning up in the Finals . Well it’s now over and done with and arguably this might be the most embarrassing series loss in NBA Finals’ history. A patron of mine would suggest that this loss was in no way as humiliating as the Los Angeles Lakers’ series loss (4-1) to the Detroit Pistons in the NBA Finals of 2004 . But I simply look at this way, an aging Lakers’ roster that had four future Hall of Famers , Karl Malone , Gary Payton , Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal , wherein two of those players (Malone and Payton) in particular were somewhat past their prime simply made this Heat loss more improbable .

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Slide show for your perusal.

The Dallas Mavericks are crowned as champions for the 2010-11 season and quite rightly so , as they sought to win this series on its merits rather than simply being there merely as a sideshow and be the Heat’s whipping post. The oddsmakers in Vegas simply went with style over substance , hence looking lure in those sucker bets of those who thought that the Heat would sleepwalk their way through the NBA Finals . Can’t say that I blame as there’s a reason why there those monstrous edifices are being continuously built in Las Vegas ……… the House always wins .

As the postgame autopsy begins we now know that “Three Headed Monster” doesn’t necessarily work when the superstars that are surrounded aren’t all on the same page alongside the supporting cast . I mean you can either buy into the hype LeBron James being “the best player” in the league but given what I’ve now seen that argument has become so weak and overplayed that it no longer warrants being part of any discussion concerning the NBA ! The self anointed King is merely a prince without a crown and kingdom. As for Dwyane Wade his ass should simply be thankful that his legacy hasn’t been questioned but the jury could still be out on that . Pat Riley and coach Erik Spoelstra this offseason will certainly have to assess the roster and the damage done because there’s no doubt in my mind this organization and team is now in a state of shock even if on the exterior they’re not showing the signs.

It wouldn’t surprise me now to see Hollywood mega producer Jerry Bruckheimer bring in the cast of hit show ” CSI Miami” to investigate whether or not a serious felony crime had been committed during the 2011 NBA Finals . Care to who guess the villain of the piece may well end up being ? I’m sure David Caruso’s character Horatio Caine will provide us not only with a succinct and successful investigation but seeing the villain being taken away in handcuffs would be fun . But alas , I think we all know where the guilt will ultimately rest here, in lieu of this debacle ! All fingers point to the King and his cabal of aides . Suffice to say while in Dallas , Texas the fans there are cheering on their team , it wouldn’t suprise me if they’re also laughing at James and his supporting cast. And what of the former fans of LeBron James in the Cleveland area ? Get the feeling that they’re simply loving this as well ? And even if at the time I thought it rather idiotic with Cleveland Cavaliers’ owner Dan Gilbert making the claim …” that the Cavs will win a title before the Heat “ ……… who are we now to make light of that statement ?

Well now that Terrelle Pryor has escaped the prying eyes of the NCAA and Ohio State having left school to ply his trade and wares in the NFL . I can’t help but wonder how his new agent Drew Rosenhaus will sell his client as viable and potentially a game breaker who knows how to win. Don’t get me wrong I liken Rosenhaus to his counterpart in MLB —- Scott Boras . These two sports agents to my mind have represented the seedier sides of both sports and nothing that they can do , short of donating their combined wealth can convince me that they represent what is good about professional sports in general through the eyes of an agent.

Pryor will come with a great deal of baggage , character issues and the fact that honesty isn’t one of biggest traits but somehow Rosenhaus will try to convince a team that his client is well worth a look at . With the player not being part of the NFL Draft that took place in April , he’s now eligible for the supplemental draft where he’ll no doubt be joined by other unsigned college free agents and other college talent (from lower subdivisions) not taken in the draft. And while there’s no denying that Terrelle Pryor is a talented player I’m not so sure that if taken by an NFL team it will be at his desired position of quarterback . If anything he could be asked to change position and become quite possibly a tight end or wide receiver but it is obvious to those who have an acute awareness as to business acumen of Drew Rosenhaus , he will sell his client as a bonafide NFL ready quarterback capable of leading a team if given the chance.

From my own perspective I believe that there will be a team willing to take a flier on Pryor purely out of desperation . But amongst the teams who may well be in need of a quarterback without having or wanting to pay a premium price then Terrelle Pryor may well be their best option .

The thinning of the herd has now began amongst the managerial casualties within baseball. Bob Geren was summarily fired by the Oakland Athletics but the inherent problems of the organization solely shouldn’t laid squarely on a manager who has in reality never been given the weapons to get the job done. This team has struggled this season and their record (28-39) within the AL West is a clear indication of that . If anything I for one find it extremely difficult to see how the fans can simply think Geren is primarily to blame for the team’s woes given the fact that team owner Lew Wolff has about as much of an ambition to win as Anthony Weiner (D-South Brooklyn) to admit that he’s not only sexual deviant but also someone who’s not fit to hold any sort of political office much less be a legislator in Congress . Granted , GM Billy Beane has been entrusted to turn things around but how much longer should the fans really be asked to tolerate the ineptitude being shown at this juncture ?

Beane has done his utmost make the best out of a bad situation but even now I can’t help but wonder how much worse things will have to get before there is enough outrage from the fans wherein some action will be taken. Instead they stand steadfast in their support of the team while its ownership group looks on merely laughing at them . Well it’s not as if they have shown any concept or the perception that they feel their pain but instead it’s been the same old story as usual without there being any real signs that the organization is actually on the cusp achieving anything of merit. OK , so one can praise the fact that they’ve a talent crop of young players throughout their farm system and some top prospects that given time will prove to be productive . But in the game of baseball from a business and competitive standpoint it’s about what is happening now on the field of play , rather than what could possibly happen two or even four years from now . And given the financial impediment of this organization and its unwillingness to actually spend money I seriously doubt that many of the players the fans are now yearning to see at some point in the future will actually be with the organization at that time in the future !

The frailties of the team this season has manifested itself in innumerable ways from the team’s lack of defense to the inconsistency of the pitching and offense . And now with Bob Melvin being entrusted to take control and guide this staff it will be interesting to see how the team fares over the remainder of this month and the rest of the season .

With the core of this team being a group of youngsters with some veteran presence sprinkled in for added surety one can understand the struggles that the team has gone through . Injuries asides , as is the norm with any organization the Oakland A’s have had their fair share of ups and downs . this season but at the same time players such as Coco Crisp , Josh Willingham , Cliff Pennington , Trevor Cahill , Carlos Gonzalez and others on this roster know that there is still something to fight for even if the belief amongst the masses is that the team really doesn’t stand that much of a chance in attaining some semblance of success this season.

I know of some passionate fans of the Oakland A’s who’d like nothing better than for Lew Wolff to out the team up for sale . And I for one would relish to see that event actually take place as I do feel that in large part in spite of the alleged business acumen of some the team owners in baseball . I for one feel that the majority of them on their best day wouldn’t know the difference between a balance sheet and baking sheet ! I’d even go so far as to suggest that the general managers within the game aren’t that far behind the owners with regard to that issue as well ! To further emphasize that point who in their right mind given the environment at the time would agree to trade away a player and still be on the hook for the greater part of their salary some five years later after that trade had actually taken place ? This is but one of many asinine business concepts that has taken place within the game and that is completely suborned by baseball’s hierarchy . I can hear agent Scott Boras now in the aftermath of the Alex Rodriguez trade from the Texas Rangers to the New York Yankees with then Rangers’ ownership group led by Tom Hicks and George Ken Gillette you’ve been had suckers “ . It has only been recently that the Rangers have been able to untie themselves from that particular financial debacle .

If there are said to be any interested parties now pursuing the purchase of the Oakland Athletics we’re not being informed publicly of any such premise but I am sure that the fans of the team would willingly accept anyone at this juncture if it meant to quick removal of Wolff and his partners expeditiously . I mean having to endure his tenure as owner of this organization I would guess could be compared to a form of Chinese water torture ! But those are merely my own opinions as the present predicament surrounding the A’s at present . The fans deserve a great deal more than this from the ownership group but unfortunately Wolff doesn’t feel it necessary to reciprocate at all .

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

At some point I know that this all comes down to making money more than anything else but surely the fans deserve more from the athletes and owners given the fact that it is the fans who are actually paying the price of admission for these sporting events ? Simply chime in with a comment on your thoughts as to the points raised within the piece .

Alan aka tophatal ……………………………..

http://tophatal.wordpress.com ……

Picture and slide show details below .

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(1) Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh, left, looks on as Dwyane Wade answers a question during a basketball news conference, Tuesday, June 14, 2011 in Miami. Instead of hosting Game 7 of the NBA finals on Tuesday, the Heat packed up their stuff for the summer. AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee …….

(2) Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra gestures as he speaks during a basketball news conference, Tuesday, June 14, 2011 in Miami. Instead of hosting Game 7 of the NBA finals on Tuesday, the Heat packed up their stuff for the summer. AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee …….

(3) Conceitedness on the part of Macy’s and the Miami Heat ? For the second time in five years the retailer made a mistake of this magnitude . An ad for Macy’s proclaiming the Miami Heat as NBA champions inadvertently ran in the Miami Herald Monday, June 13, 2011. The Dallas Mavericks defeated the Miami Heat in Game 6 in Miami Sunday night to win the NBA Finals 4-2. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky …

(4) Dirk Nowitzki (L) and Jason Kidd (R) of the Dallas Mavericks hold the MVP and Larry O’Brien Trophies after defeating the Miami Heat in Game Six of the 2011 NBA Finals, at the AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami, Florida on June 12, 2011. AFP PHOTO/Mark RALSTON …..

(5) LeBron James (left) and Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat answer questions after the Heat were defeated 105-95 by the Dallas Mavericks in Game Six of the 2011 NBA Finals at American Airlines Arena on June 12, 2011 in Miami, Florida. Getty Images/ Mike Ehrmann ……

(6) LOS ANGELES, CA – AUGUST 17: Executive producer Jerry Bruckheimer (L) and actor David Caruso (R) attend the CSI Miami 100th Episode Cake Cutting Party at Raleigh Studios on August 17, 2006 in Los Angeles, California. Life Magazine / Getty Images/ Michael Buckner ……

(7) They’re already on the case CSI Miami unit members at a club that James and Wade are said to frequent . LOL,LOL !! Courtesy of CBS / Jerry Bruckheimer Productions Inc.

(8) Buckeyes’ quarterback Terrelle Pryor. Getty Images / Kevin C Cox …

(9) Sports agent Drew Rosenhaus whose latest client is reputed to be Terrelle Pryor . The hard sell now begins for the agent luring the interest of teams around the NFL . AP Photo Kevin Neill ……

(10) Oakland Athletics manager Bob Melvin left, argues with first base umpire Brian O’Nora after a MLB baseball game with the Chicago White Sox in Chicago, Sunday, June 12, 2011. Chicago won 5-4 . AP Photo/Paul Beaty …….

(11) Hideki Matsui(notes) #55 of the Oakland Athletics bats against the Chicago White Sox on June 12, 2011 at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago, Illinois. The White Sox defeated the Athletics 5-4. Photo by David Banks/Getty Images …….

(12) Wolff is seen here with former manager Bob Geren . AP Photo/ Nick Warner ……

(13) Bob Melvin is introduced to the press as the new manager of the Oakland A’s after the firing of his predecessor Bob Geren by GM Billy Beane (right). Courtesy of CSN ……………

(14) The A’s ballpark one of baseball’s most heralded places of pageantry and a part of the ballclub’s folklore . Courtesy of mlb.mlb.com…….

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Basketball, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dan Gilbert, LeBron James, Miami Heat, NBA

Need A Loan ? Quicken Loans Is Definitely In Need of One …… As Are The Cleveland Cavaliers


Need A Loan ? Quicken Loans Is Definitely In Need of One …… As Are The Cleveland Cavaliers

If you’re Dan Gilbert how embarrassed must you be after your antics and the recent fact that the Cleveland Cavaliers as a team has become so much of a mess ? Gilbert as owner of the team has simply allowed this organization and team become a laughing stock around the league . And even with a seasoned coach veteran such as Byron Scott the team can’t buy a win (8-32) much less have gain any sympathy from the public and fans at large .

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Slide show gallery .

The Cavaliers this season have become the team that literally no wants to see unless they’re being trampled by the likes of the Boston Celtics , Los Angeles Lakers or even LeBron James’ new team the Miami Heat . The team itself has now become the whipping post for the teams around the league other than those I’ve already mentioned . This season alone the Cavaliers have performed miserably and it has caused the fans in attendance and the Quicken Loans Arena question the direction of this team and where it’s said to be going. After James’ abrupt departure from the team it was understandable that he was viewed as a pariah around the league and by the fans in Cleveland . Dan Gilbert’s statement did nothing to make this whole situation any easier for all who observed this meltdown and whatever else has since transpired and it pales into comparison by what’s now taking place on the basketball court.

Courtesy of Yahoo Sports & The Morning Journal

Cavs coach Byron Scott wants to focus on defense in 2nd half

Bob Finnan of The Morning Journal

Even though they are 40 games into the season, Cavaliers coach Byron Scott has decided now is the time to be more accountable on defense.

Scott is laying down the law, largely because he probably can’t stand to watch his team get shredded on the defensive end any longer.

“I’m going to be a lot more demanding,” Scott said. “If you make a mistake, you should start walking over to the sideline.”

Scott had been lenient with the players, many of whom are trying to find their way in the NBA. But enough is enough.

The Cavs (8-32) are shockingly bad on defense. They are 26th in the NBA in points allowed (104.9), 28th in opponents’ field-goal percentage (48.1 percent) and 30th in opponents’ 3-point percentage (43.3 percent).

Scott and Cavs “defensive coordinator” Chris Jent have simplified their schemes.

“We’re going to keep it real simple,” he said. “The guys like that a whole lot better.

“They understand that I’m putting more pressure on them to be focused for 48 minutes on the defensive end. If you make a mistake in the coverage, on the next dead ball, you should just walk off. Just walk to the bench because I’m going to sub you any way.”

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As I alluded to earlier the team can’t buy a win nor are they able play with any sense of cohesion . And as good as I believe Byron Scott to be I don’t believe that he’s capable of turning things around within this organization. The team lacks leadership and commitment to excellence and given what we’ve seen shown by Gilbert as an owner , his demeanor shown , that he’s not entirely a conduit for attracting major free agent talent to the organization . And herein lies the caveat concerning the Cavaliers they’re going nowhere and nowhere fast !

The Cleveland Cavaliers currently led by veteran Antawn Jamison may well be looking towards the future and for a team now at 8-32 within the Central Division of the Eastern Conference they are essentially struggling to make their presence felt . I know that over the course of the remainder of this NBA season they may well fight to prove to the fans and the general public at large that they can be competitive . From my own perspective I do believe that the Cavaliers are falling off a precipice and there’s no one there to catch them . It’s becoming more of a fact that Dan Gilbert or anyone within the organization (front office) simply knows how to bring this organization back from the edge of that very precipice .

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

I’d like to think that Dan Gilbert has simply learned a lesson from what’s now taking place with the Cleveland Cavaliers ! For a man who’s the founder of one the nation’s financial and mortgage concerns with Quicken Loans and the fact that he’s turned that company into a multi-billion concern Dan Gilbert as a sports owner has shown as much acumen for making the Cavaliers a relevant concern as Lindsay Lohan’s career could be described as being relevant within Hollywood ! He had to the goose that laid the golden egg and then summarily drove him out of town with his sheer idiocy and vocal commentary. Let me ask you this what owner do you having fired Byron Scott’s predecessor Mike Brown and then publicly make the statement that he doesn’t need to consult the best player on his team as to who that next coach should be ? Understandably this is basketball and the NBA that we’re talking about , it is a sport that’s star and player driven in terms of its exposure and anyone who simply believes differently simply needs to look around the sports’ landscape as a whole ?

Your thoughts on the NBA and in particular with the Cleveland Cavaliers this season and their travails this so far ? And what are you overall thoughts concerning what transpired with LeBron James in the offseason and the actions of Dan Gilbert, himself ? Simply chime in with a comment on your thoughts on this topic and anything else pertaining to the NBA .

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Picture and slide show gallery details .

(1) Majority owner Dan Gilbert of the Cleveland Cavaliers talks to the media prior to playing the Boston Celtics in the Cavaliers 2010 home opener at Quicken Loans Arena on October 27, 2010 in Cleveland, Ohio. Getty Images/ Gregory Shamus ……….

James (23) is seen here court-side as a Cleveland Cavalier with then coach Mike Brown who was summarily dismissed by the Cavaliers’ front office at the end of last season. AP / Frank Warren ……………

(3) Denver Nuggets center Nene Hilario (31) shoots in between Cleveland Cavaliers power forward Antawn Jamison (4) and Alonzo Gee (33) during the second quarter of an NBA basketball game in Denver on Saturday, Jan. 15, 2011. AP Photo/Barry Gutierrez ….

(4) Utah Jazz’s Andrei Kirilenko, left, fights for the ball with Cleveland Cavaliers’ Ramon Sessions during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Salt Lake City, Friday, Jan. 14, 2011. The Jazz beat the Cavaliers 121-99 . AP Photo/George Frey …..

(5) Cleveland Cavaliers head coach Bryon Scott calls a play during a game against the Utah Jazz during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Salt Lake City, Friday, Jan. 14, 2011. The Jazz beat the Cavaliers 121-99. AP photo/George Frey …….

(6) James is seen here with former team coach Mike Brown and team GM Danny Ferry as the player meets with the convened press having just won his first league MVP Award in 2009. The player would follow up that feat by repeating again 2010 joining a select few players to have won back to back NBA League MVP awards. Associated Press/ Mark Hall …………..

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NB Click on the links shown for the latest on the NBA .

NBA news …..

NBA Standings …….. Conference …………….. Division

NBA statstics

Alan aka tophatal …………………………..

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Eye candy lil’ Ashley Banks (NBC’s “Fresh Prince of Bel Air”) is now all grown up aka Tatyana Ali

Tatyana Ali

Enough to put make one’s manhood stand to attention .

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Stacey Dash

Actress Stacey Dash

Dash  Stacey

Oh mama ! It’s a man’s duty to want to tap that booty !
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UB40 ………… “King”

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Basketball, Cleveland Cavaliers, LeBron James, Miami Heat, NBA, Sports

Is There A Nigger Around With Some Common Sense Please ?


Is There A Nigger Around With Some Common Sense Please ?

Well the fallout from the LeBron James episode has created some seismic shifts but at the same time some respected African Americans have come to the fore making the most asinine of suggestions. Now don’t get me wrong in their chosen professions I’ve no doubt that they’re well respected. But when I here the likes of Jesse Jackson calling an NBA owner , a person with a slave owner’s mentality then I for one have to question Jackson’s mendacity and intelligence ! This being the very same person , who while in New York chose to disparage the Jewish community and then had the temerity to act as if he’d done nothing wrong. Now we have respected journalist and ESPN show host Michael Wilbon coming out in support of Jackson . Now had this been Jason Whitlock making that statement in support of Jackson then I’d have thought nothing of it. But given that , to my mind Wilbon being a highly respected sport’s journalist , I do believe that he of all people ought to have known better.

Now in this day and age where there are very few African American males where the young men of that race can look up to and say that’s a proud example of a man let alone an African American man. We’re now bereft of leaders and men who can actually sustain an eloquent conversation much less talk about a subject that might have a bearing on a young person’s life.

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Courtesy of Examiner.com (Tampa Bay)

Jesse Jackson: Spewing hate and his own brand of racism

No matter how we try to downplay it, cover it up, smooth it over or seek to put it in the context of what hopefully will one day be ancient history, there is simply no denying a tragic fact.

We are a civilization that uses racial differences as a weapon.

American sport and our very history is riddled with examples, most of which have become the core of our sensitivity to race and the need to treat everyone equally.

Jackie Robinson endured torrents of verbal rage and emerged an early champion of civil rights. Jack Johnson refused to “know his place” as a black man and was later jailed for preferring white female partners. His pardon waited almost a century. Countless athletes from varied walks of racial life can still remember being treated to their own water fountain, dining counter or rest room.

We are certainly not alone in fighting these stigmas. Players of color are routinely mocked with monkey chants in European soccer. One star player made no attempt to hide his use of the Nazi salute to honor his despicable brethren in the stands. A former star rugby player and current broadcaster speaks to a team and allegedly calls an opposing player a “black c***”.

Despite all this, people of intelligence, honor, wisdom and patience soldier on to stem this fetid tide of racial bile. Secure in the knowledge these are the most useful weapons one can use in fighting what remains a raging battle not only on our fields of play, but certainly in our daily existence as well.

But then, just when you think a time has come for an athlete to be judged on the merits what was earned working in that uniform instead of the skin shade underneath it, comes the one person, the one comment, the one action, that restarts the pinwheel of hate, misunderstanding, and disgusting racial examples that we are better off diligently erasing from our memory.

Jesse Jackson has in one verbal swoop inundated the fires of racism with more than enough fuel to reignite the mud-dwelling mores of those who revel in continually joking and mocking the tragic and insulting slavery of African-Americans.

“His feelings of betrayal personify a slave master mentality,” Jackson said in a statement released Sunday responding to the angry post-Lebron signing statements from Cleveland Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert. “(He) sees LeBron as a runaway slave.”

No one will argue, at least successfully, that Gilbert didn’t shoot his mouth off and take a chunk of foot with the blast. Following James’ departure, Gilbert became the shining example of not merely being a boorish sports baron, but of mixing in a heavy dose of petulant adolescent child to create a sad and, at the same time, laughable mutation.

Gilbert roared that James was a coward for leaving Cleveland. He quit during a handful of Cavs playoff games. And compared the holding of James accountable for his actions to that of dealing with a spoiled child. And even while being fined $100,000 by the NBA for his words, he remains adamant there was no racial connection whatsoever.

Emotional? Certainly. Insulting? Not in the least when players such as James have dealt with much worse on a nightly basis during an 82 game season. Words that mask racism? Go ahead and read them for yourself. I’ll dare you to find something even remotely connected.

But racist? Taking race into consideration as a basis for dropping the hometown hammer on this once-favored son? Considering James little more than an indentured servant who should be using a scythe to clear fields when he’s not nailing double-doubles? And taking to task the very sports league that has become the model for race relations?

While I was taught at a very young age to never use this word in describing anyone, there is no better fit for anyone making this connection.

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Let me see, Jackson’s claim to fame a follower of the late Dr Martin Luther King and whose claim that he was at his side when he was shot has since been found groundless and false. He’d met with him on that fateful day but as to him being at his side ….. that’s simply Jesse’s idea of being economical with the truth. This is also the same man also disparaged the current sitting President by using a profanity whilst on camera and we’re meant to take his claim seriously concerning his statement concerning Cleveland Cavaliers’ owner Dan Gilbert ? Is it any wonder that young African Americans can’t identify with a generation of leaders from yesteryear who are now bereft of intelligence as they are to their ongoing reason to be a part of a legitimate political debate ? Can someone answer me this but when was the last time Jesse Jackson actually had something of relevance to say on any given subject ? Much like certain members of Congress , he’s about as useful as fecal matter would be on the sole of someone’s shoes.

Now as to the situation of James and his move from Cleveland to the wiles of Miami and the Miami Heat . Admittedly it was a surprise that he moved to the Heat when every indication might be that he would either remain with the Cavaliers or quite possibly go to the Chicago Bulls . That asides the premise I see behind the move is borne out by the fact that the Cavaliers’ management and front office were complacent but above all naïve to think that their most prized asset would remain with an organization whose idea of improving its talent was to obtain an aging Shaquille O’Neal and get a player in Antawn Jamison who shows flashes of brilliance about as often as Lindsay Lohan has been known to have a hit movie. Come to think of what was the last time Lohan had a “hit movie” and what was it ? Girl has a “rack” though, even if she’s supposedly batting for the other side .

Now come full circle and we’re now to think that Gilbert despite his child like rants against his former employee isn’t without fault ? He’s failed to look at himself in the mirror and ask himself the question what could I have done better in order to have made this situation work ? Now he’s whining like someone who has stolen something of value from him when he in the first place hadn’t made sure that the asset was secure. Somehow if this is a guy who believes that his NBA franchise will win a title before the present incumbent Heat organization does. Then for all sense and purpose I fully hope that he’s made to eat his words ! Though I’m in no way a Heat fan , I do feel that Gilbert has made a complete ass of himself and placed the Cavaliers’ franchise in almost impossible position when it now comes to acquiring players in the future. Players will see his actions and then ask themselves ….. ” is this the sort of guy I’d want to play or even work for” ? And the answer may well be a resounding …..”no” .

An opportunist like Jackson will now look for the next photo op and fire whereby he can add more fuel to it by making another asinine statement . Thankfully, on the international front he’s about as well known as “Joe The Plumber” whose brief fifteen minutes of fame were filled with about as much well meaning sound bytes as a speech by Sarah Palin on the US economy. Either way one can be thankful that Jackson is about as reliable as a ground hog on Ground Hog Day. He pops his head up for the season then disappears back into obscurity . Unfortunately , far too often it’s the times when he does pop his head up for all of the wrong damn reasons , that’s when the public sits up and takes note of the ridiculous things that he has to say. None more so than at present as it now becomes a water cooler topic of discussion. And needless to say this very statement will be discussed , analyzed and then have supporters on both sides of the argument. And the chances are that divide will be drawn along racial lines. Well just to dispel that notion as here’s one nigger who’s not buying into the bullshit that Jesse is now espousing. Let’s just say that Jesse Jackson is about as relevant to my way of life as fecal matter would be on the sole of my shoe. In other words I’ll just scrape it off and be on my merry way. Like I said when was the last time the man had anything of relevance to say on any meaningful subject that would be of impact on our way of life ?

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Picture gallery for your perusal .

Chime in with a comment on the topic if at all interested and I’ll respond to your comments as best I can . Thanks once again as always !

Alan Parkins aka tophatal ………………… 🙂

Black Eyed Peas ……………………..“Shut Up”

Basketball, Cleveland Cavaliers, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers, Sports

Is It Really That Much Of A Formality ……… ?


 

 

 

 Is  It  Really  That  Much  Of   A  Formality   ….  ?

 

 

 

It’d  appear that  the  common thinking   when  it’s  all   said  and   done .  It  will   be  the  Los  Angeles  Lakers   facing  the  Cleveland   Cavaliers   in  the  NBA   Finals   for  the   2009   season.  And  that’s  as  it   should   be   based  upon  their   regular  season  records.       

 

 

 

But  here’s the  caveat    there’s  such  a  thing  as  the  playoffs    and that’s  where  the    fortunes  and   tide  of   fate   can  be  determined   for  the teams .     If  it’s  to  be   believed   then   the   Cavaliers   shouldn’t   have    much   trouble  at   all  marching  through  the  Eastern   Conference  playoffs.   

 

 

James  addresses members of the  convened  press  in the  postgame  interview.
James addresses members of the convened press after his team's victory over the Detroit Pistons in game one in the first round of the seven game series playoffs. picture appears courtesy of nbae/getty images/ Matt Sullivan ...............

 

  

As   good  as   LeBron  James  and  his   supporting   cast   have   performed   during  the  season   attaining   a  66-16   record.    The   Los   Angeles  Lakers (65-17) have   been   equally  effective   in  marching  to  supremacy  within  the  Western  Conference.  And  led  by  last   season’s   MVP   Kobe  Bryant  the  team   has   played   well .  But   at  the  most  inopportuned  of   moments   they’ve   shown  their   frailties  as  a  team.  But   this   came   from the  inconsistency  of  their   bench  and   unwillingness  to  step   up  to  the  plate  and  be   counted when  it  mattered  most.    Now  there  are  those   amongst  us  who   feel  that  this  is  nothing   more   than   a  passing   phase   for  the  team.   However  a  passing   phase   shouldn’t  be   repeated   as often  as  we’ve  seen  from the  Lakers  as  of  late.

 

 

  

 

 

The  loss  against  the  Portland  Trailblazers   as  inexplicable  as it  was .   It   shouldn’t go   unnoticed   by  those  more   astute   in the   nuances  of  the  game  that  the  Trailblazers  have   had  the  Lakers’   number.  And they’ve  proven  to  be   the   Lakers’  nemesis   and   achilles’  heel.

 

James  of  the  Cavaliers   and   the  Pistons'  Antonio  McDyess  and   Tayshaun  Prince ..................
James seen here tries to evade the defensive presence of the Pistons' Antonio McDyess in game one of today's playoff game at the Quicken Loans Arena , Cleveland , OH. Also pictured is McDyess' teammate Tayshaun Prince. picture appears courtesy of nbae/getty images/ Matt Sullivan ..............

 

  

 

While  we  can  all   agree  that  the  events  of  the   regular  season   shouldn’t  as  such  be  an  indicator  or  precursor   of  things  to  come.    With  a  Bryant  led  team  and   all  the  marbles  to  play  for   it’s  the  Lakers  that   everyone   appears to  be   favoring  at  this   juncture.   Cavaliers’  fans   obviously   feel    differently  as  to  the   unwavering  support   as  to   the  concensus  seems  to  be  growing  for  the  likelihood  of  a  Lakers triumph  in  the  NBA  Finals.   

 

 

 

 

Those   within the  city  of  Cleveland  and   LeBron  James’  fans  across the  state   are  no  doubt    hoping  that    should  the  two   teams   meet   in the  Finals.  Then   all  of the  questions  put   forth   will  be    finally  answered   once  and  for  all.  

 

 

James  takes   the  jump  shot   during  the   game   against the  Pistons.
James attempts the jump shot in the game played against the Detroit Pistons . picture appears courtesy of nbae/getty images/ Matt Sullivan ............

 

  

We’ve all  witnessed  the   capabilities  of   both   players this   season   with the  exploits   of   both  Bryant  and  James.   If  nothing   else  we  can   agree  on  one  thing   ,  these  two   players  have   brought   a  great  deal  of   excitement  to  the  NBA.     And  though    we’ve  seen  some   stellar   displays   by  the  Miami  Heat’s  Dwyane  Wade.    The  game’s  regular  season    MVP  award   will  come  down to  a  choice  that   will  have  to  be  made   between  Bryant  and   James.    The concensus  is   that    James  is    the pre-determined   favorite.  Rightfully  so  perhaps  at  this   juncture.

But   I’d   dare  say   that  if    it comes   down  to    a  choice   then  both  players   would  willingly  accept   not   winning  the    regular season   MVP  award  and  pursue   their   goal  of   winning  an  NBA  championship   and   ring.  

 

 

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Basketball, David Stern, LeBron James, MLB, NBA, NFL, NHL, Phoenix Suns, Shaquille O'Neal, Sports

Bah Humbug …………..!


 

Bah  Humbug  ………………….

 

 

 

 

 

 

There’s a  certain amount of  irreverence  meant  to  take  place  when  each  of  the  major  showcase events  take place  with  regard  to each  of  the  All  Star  events  covering  Major League Baseball(MLB), the NHL,   the NFL  and the  NBA.   Which  brings  me  to  the  real  reason  behind  this  article.

 

 

 

 

To my  mind  these  events  are  about  as  meaningful  now  as  the  voting  is  on determining  who’ll become  a  charge  on that  eponymous  reality  show  American  Idol.  The  voting  for   these  events  are  mind numbingly   boring  and  even though  the  fans  do  have  a  say.  They’re merely  voting   for their  favorite  players  rather than  voting  for the   athletes  on merit.  Much  like  it is  with the  reality  show  itself.  If  that’s  the  case  then we  might  as well  have Simon Cowell  , Paula  Abdul and  Randy  Jackson  adjudicate  who  should   or  shouldn’t  be  playing  in  the  upcoming  NBA  All  Star Game.

 

 

 

 

 

The  event  itself   will  be  held  in  the  Valley  of  The  Sun .  For  those  of  you  who are  uncertain  as  to where  that  might  be .  Well  we’re  talking   Phoenix, Arizona for  the uninitiated  out  there . There’s  already  been a  great  deal  controversy  as  to   who  has  been  voted  in  and  to  those who’ve  been  omitted.  But  at  the  end of  the  day   does  anyone  really  care  for  that  matter ?  It’s  not  as  if  the  event  itself  is  all  that meaningful  to  begin  with.   Its only   reason  for  assembling  their  stars is  in order  for  their  corporate  sponsors  to get  a  chance  to see  the  players  up close  and  personal. If it’s  for  the  benefit  of  the  fans  then  it’s  sorely  lost  on a  number  of  them.   I’d  dare  say  that the  wife  a  Fortune 500 company  executive  wouldn’t   know  LeBron  James   from  Rick  James  ?  But  she  might well  know  that  if  she’s into  the  r&b  scene  or  was once  an  NBA groupie ?  Or  quite  possibly they  might  have  children   who   are  fans  of  the  sport  in  general.   

 

 

 

Amare Stoudemire  and  teammate  Grant Hill  of the  Phoenix  Suns try  to  defend the  offensive  play  of  Golden State Warriors'  Kelenna Azubuike ..................
Amare Stoudemire and teammate Grant Hill of the Phoenix try to defend the offensive play of Kelenna Azubuike of the Golden State Warriors ...................

 

 

Amare Stoudemire and  teammate  Grant  Hill  of the Phoenix Suns  try  to  defend the  offensive  play  of the Golden  State  Warriors’ Kelenna Azubuike   ……………

 

 

 

 

 

But as  this  showcase  approaches  what  are  we   to  expect ? It’s  not  as  if  the  game  itself  has  ever  been  known  to competitive . It’s  merely  an  exhibition to  curry  favor  with the  fans. Albeit  that  the ones  benefiting  from this  all  are  primarily  the NBA and  its  corporate  benefactors.  The  fans  certainly  aren’t.   But then again  Commissioner  David  Stern would  tell  you  otherwise.   For  the  twenty  five  years that  Stern  has  been  the  commissioner    the  business  of  the  NBA has  multiplied   twelve fold.  It’s  now  become  a  multi-billion  enterprise  and  its  tentacles  reaches   right  across  the  globe.    It’s   greatest  presence   is  now  in  the  Far  East.     China  and  its 1.2  billion  population  is  the  market  that   Stern  now  seeks  to  conquer.  And  with  the  Olympics   in  Beijing  having  such  a  presence.  The  triumph  of   Team  USA  was  the  greatest  sales’  pitch  that  the NBA  could’ve   wanted.

 

 

 

 

The  All  Star  Game  that  it signifies  as  alluded  to  before  is  nothing  more  than  exhibition  for  the   game to  show of  its  wares.    The  players  themselves  are  lauded  by  the  fans .  And  it  raises  awareness  and  allegedly   more accessibility  as  on  appearance  it makes  these  superstars  approachable  and   fan  friendly.  That  may  well  be  the  case   for   many  of  these  athletes  who  are  being   millions  of  dollars    to  show  off  their   athletic   abilities.   But  then  who  amongst  wouldn’t  want to  be  in their  shoes  ?  It’s   not  as  if we  haven’t   envisaged   ourselves  at one  time  or  another  being  a  part  of the winning  team ,  hitting  the  winning   shot,  scoring  the  winning   goal.   Pipe  dream  or  not  it’s  something  that we  can  allude  to.

 

 

 

 

 

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