Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Cleanest Reputations in the NBA

It seems that plenty of NBA players have tarnished their images over the years. It's easy to point fingers at high profile players who have problems with the law, drugs, gambling, paternity issues, or problems with teammates or coaches. I'd like to focus this post on some of the NBA players who are known for their clean reputations.

Being in the NBA could be a recipe for disaster for many young men. Imagine the temptations and potential problems that might arise if you were a young, rich, and traveling around the country with fans in every city. I'm not saying that all the guys below are squeaky clean, but they have done a good job of staying out of trouble and maintaining a good image and are good role models.

Kevin Johnson
AC Green
David Robinson
Dikembe Mutombo
Kevin Durrant
Grant Hill
Steve Nash
Ray Allen
Tim Duncan
Richard Jefferson
Dwayne Wade

I hope I don't jinx these guys by saying I think they have great reputations. Hopefully I won't read about a murder in a strip club that they were all at over the weekend. Anyway, my hat is off to guys who maintain a clean image, participate in community outreach programs, develop charitable foundations, and give back to their community.

I'm sure there are many more NBA players who have been generous with their time and money, who have also been good role models. Feel free to add any suggestions to the list.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The NBA Loose Cannons

Like all sports, basketball requires mental toughness and keeping your head in the game. Many people assume basketball is based on one's physical skills, but the mental component is also a huge factor.

I've noticed that certain players are more susceptible to mentally wandering off during a game than others. The mental breakdown spectrum ranges from 1) Being easily distracted 2) Having frequent mental slip ups 3) Not being able to control one's emotions 4) Being just plain crazy 5) Achieving complete head case/train wreck status.

In sports like MMA, football, and wrestling, it might be beneficial for a participant to have a reputation as someone who barks at the moon and is a little crazy, but it appears some of these personalities are also in the NBA. Below I have listed some players who have had interesting moments, mental breakdowns, or completely lost it at times during their career.

Dennis Rodman- He set the standard for craziness. Despite his flamboyant looks, controversial behavior, and lack of opening up to teammates, he still somehow got the job done. It makes me wonder what he could have been capable of if he was willing to conform with his team a little bit more.

Ron Artest aka Meta World Peace- The name change speaks volumes on this subject. He's known for hard fouls and never backing down to an opponent, but people really started to question his mental state when he went up in the stands to fight fans at the brawl in Detroit.

Javale McGee-I like watching this talented leaper, but he is full of surprises and regularly does some funny stuff that makes me wonder if he is even paying attention during games. Sometimes I think he has the attention span and maturity of a little kid.

Latrell Spreewell- He was one of the most talented scorers during his days in the NBA, but choking out your coach is a sure fire way to get you on the list of loose cannons.

JR Smith- Is an exciting player with great athletic ability, but doesn't like to conform. He's know for run ins with coaches. He recently came back from playing in China and supposedly accrued 1 million dollars in fees for breaking team rules.

Nate Robinson- I like Nate, but he's a little too intense. He has a flare for showboating and it makes me wonder if he can make wise decisions at the right time. Things like nearly scoring on the wrong basket and almost injuring himself while jumping on his own players while celebrating come to mind.

Andrew Bynum- He's been playing great this year, but I could have sworn he was heading for a meltdown at the end of last season after the cheap shots and suspension he got during the playoffs. Anytime I see a player rip of his jersey and walk of the court it makes me wonder how stable he is.

Chris "The Birdman" Anderson- I haven't seen any mental meltdowns from Anderson and I admit I'm judging him by his appearance, but you gotta wonder whats going through the guys head. He looks more like a Hells Angels leader than an athlete.

Honorary mentions to John "headbutt" Starks, Michael Beesley, Drew Gooden, Delonte West, Stephon Marbury, Gilbert Arenas, Scot Pollard, and Stephen Jackson.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

March Madness Bracket Dilemma

I've heard that March is one of the least productive months in the work place due to the bracket predictions, friendly wagers, watching games, and talking about your picks to coworkers. I used to look forward to filling out my March Madness brackets, but I've had some bad experiences over the last several years.

I'm fortunate enough to have a boss who likes to have fun with bracketology and he encourages everyone to participate by submitting their predictions. Last year a co-worker who knows next to nothing about basketball won the office pool. Myself and a former college player came in dead last. How could this be? How could the two guys who knew more about basketball than everyone else in the office do so poorly?

I realized it was because in the past I have made the mistake of using the following criteria to make my predictions.

*Statistics and historical data
*Each team's overall record
*Who the experts predict will win each round
*The momentum a team has as they head to the Big Dance
*The school history and how many titles their program consistently wins
*A knowledge of particular players and their strengths and weaknesses

I have found that using the above criteria is nearly useless because it is too complicated. Instead, I am going to make my bracket predictions using the following two questions since this is what the girls in the office who have won the office pool over the last three years have done.

1- Which teams have the cutest uniforms (also known as outfits)
2- Which mascots are the most adorable.

At least I'm not bitter about my prediction abilities.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Gerald Green Hops !!!

Check out the air Gerald Green got on this alley oop! Not only could have he bitten the rim, but he decided to windmill it too.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Marcin Gortat

There are certain big men in the NBA who have have a big following. Guys like Dwight Howard, Andrew Bynum, and the Gasol brothers have been getting a lot of publicity, but one player who has really caught my attention this year is Marcin Gortat of the Phoenix Suns.

Marcin is from Poland and played pro for 3 years in Europe before joining the NBA. He's not a big name player, but he has been a very solid player since he was traded from the Magic. Gortat has averaged 16 points and 10 rebounds this year. I'm sure one reason for this is because he has been the fortunate recipient of many Steve Nash assists.

Gortat may not be an All Star yet, but he has some impressive stats on He is ranked #14 for efficiency and #22 for fantasy players. I really like how this guy plays. If he ever happens to be playing at the rec. center on Saturday, I will try to pick him up on my team.

Sunday, March 4, 2012


I'm not a Kobe hater, but I thought this was funny.