Archive for November, 2009

Brandon Jennings: Proving Critics Wrong

He was heavily criticized for turning down college hoops to play a year of professional ball in Europe. Many thought this would be a mistake, but the same critics are now being proven wrong.

Brandon Jennings is taking the NBA by storm, considered the best guard in the NBA draft, he had character issues put into question which dropped him all the way to the 10th pick by the Milwaukee Bucks. Projected for the eighth pick by the New York Knicks, who wanted Stephen Curry (and in turn he wanted to go), but he went to Golden State. The Knicks, who could have had the best player available in Jennings, opted for Jordan Hill instead. Two picks later, at #10, Jennings was picked up by the Milwaukee Bucks. It appeared like this would not be a good thing, as critics felt Jennings was too much of a prima-donna to play in a blue-collar town like Milwaukee.

Already through eight games in the season, Jennings has been off to a great start this season, and is already asserting himself as the main candidate for Rookie of the Year. He is averaging 25.5 PPG, 5.5 RPG, and is shooting a sizzling 53.9% from three-point land. The kid has been amazing, and really made noise after dropping 55 points on the Golden State Warriors on Saturday night, which was the first 50 point game in the NBA this season. What was even more amazing about his Sat. night performance, was that he did not score a single point in the first quarter in a win that propelled the Bucks into first place through Monday until Dirk Nowtizki hit the game-winning jumper in overtime to give the Mavericks a 115-113 win over the Bucks in Milwaukee in which he had 25 points, 8 rebounds, and 7 assists. The work ethic that he has displayed all season has really endeared himself to the city of Milwaukee and all the pre-draft qualms that many teams had before are being wiped away as he proves himself on the court. At the age of 20, he has shown he is more mature than many in his draft class, all due to that one year in Italy.

Will many players do what Jennings did? Probably not, but the game has improved him as an individual personally and professionally, and the Bucks just may be one of the big surprises in the competitive Eastern Conference this year. If he keeps this up, he deserves a spot in the All-Star game in Dallas this season.

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Evaluating the Golden State/Charlotte Trade

Monday morning, the Golden State Warriors traded away their “headache” in forward Stephen Jackson to the Charlotte Bobcats along with guard Acie Law in exchange for guard Raja Bell and forward Vladimir Radmanovic. The Warriors are looking for a fresh start after many issues with Jackson and the team over the past few seasons. Jackson has new scenery with a new team that desperately needs scoring.

Looking at this trade, it is pretty even. The Bobcats, as stated before, are in desperate need for scoring, and Stephen Jackson is capable of being that go-to-guy in the 4th quarter, which is something that this team has lacked for the better part of their six-year existence. Jackson came into Orlando to meet his new teammates and coach Larry Brown at 4:30pm and was starting by game time at 7pm. He learned the offense on the fly and was asking EVERYbody on the team questions, which shows he has the characteristics of being a great teammate, and he is clearly looking to move on from the Golden State and Indiana years where controversy has followed him. Being around Larry Brown will be good for Stephen, as he is a no-nonsense kind of coach, and can make him a better player.

Acie Law was just a part of the deal, as this will be his third team in four seasons. Law will be frequent on the inactive list as he would be the third string point-guard behind Raymond Felton and D.J. Augustin.

On the other side, the Warriors get a lockdown defender and a good three point shooter in Bell, and another good three point shooter in Radmanovic. Both came to the Bobcats last season, and the team improved significantly. Radmanovic should be better now that he’s back on the West Coast, as his shooting declined while being in Charlotte. Bell still has the wrist problem, but is still going to play through the pain. Both players should be available when Golden State plays Cleveland Tuesday night. The Warriors were going to send Jackson to Cleveland, but backed out at the last second, and opted to send him to Charlotte.

At the end of the deal, both teams got what they wanted. The Warriors need a good defender, they get it in Bell, and he and Radmanovic get to shoot threes freely in the offense of Don Nelson, and most importantly for them, they end their rocky relationship with Jackson. In turn, the Bobcats lose their best defender, but they get the scorer they were seeking for a very long time, and he will definitely improve on their league-worst 82.4 PPG once he gets fully adjusted to the team. He had 13 pts and 9 rebs. in his first game with his new team.

Monday Night Football Recap Week 10

All that has to be said about this is: condolences to the city of Cleveland. This city deserve so much better than the team they have right now. With that said, let’s get into the recap.

Baltimore 16, Cleveland 0- Ray Rice scored on a 13 touchdown run, and Dawan Landry took a Brady Quinn interception 48 yards for a touchdown, and the Baltimore Ravens overcame a sloppy first half to beat the Cleveland Browns, giving the nation a look at how bad the Browns REALLY are, and putting Eric Mangini’s job in further risk. The Ravens overcame the first scoreless first half of the season by putting together an efficient drive followed by Landry’s interception on Quinn immeidately after. Brady Quinn, starting once again for the first time since Week 3, went 13-31 for 99 yards with two interceptions. The Browns were held to just 160 yards of total offense and frustrated Cleveland fans were gone by the third quarter. Big losses for both teams in this game, as Ravens LB Terrell Suggs left the game with a knee injury after a illegal block by Browns QB Brady Quinn after the interception. Quinn has said the play was not dirty and he was trying not to hurt anyone; the Browns’ only star, Joshua Cribbs left the game on a stretcher after a devastating hit on a lateral from Dwan Edwards of the Ravens. Cribbs was okay, according to head coach Mangini. The Ravens stay in the AFC North title hunt and in the playoff picture, with a huge game next week as they face the Indianapolis Colts. Ravens (5-4) Browns (1-8)

Check back next week for the Monday night recap with the Tennessee Titans and the Houston Texans.

Weekly NBA Rankings Vol. 3

We had some pretty interesting shakeups in the rankings this week. We are truly beginning to see how interesting the season will be. The rankings will definitely fluctuate each week. one minute a team looks like they will tumble a lot, but then a team ahead suffers a bigger loss. Let’s just go to the rankings and see where each team lies.

1. Phoenix Suns (previous ranking: 1) (9-2)- The Suns may have lost to the Lakers, but despite all of that, they still have the best record in the NBA. There was no other team that could take the top spot, especially with the Lakers losing to the Rockets Sunday night, and the Suns thrilling win over Toronto earlier that day.

2. Atlanta Hawks (previous ranking: 5) (8-2)- They simply overmatched the Boston Celtics in the TD Garden, capping off a 3-0 week, and currently have the best record in the Eastern Conference. If you have to question this team still, why try? They are deep in every position, and if they can keep their intensity up, they may be more of a problem than most think.

3. Boston Celtics (previous ranking: 2) (8-3)- It’s one thing to lose the the Hawks, but to the Pacers? The C’s need to maintain their focus and not take all these games for granted. Teams like the Pacers are gunning for them and upset-minded each week. They are lucky enough to still be at 3 after the Pacers’ loss

4. Los Angeles Lakers (previous ranking: 3) (7-3)- So Reggie Miller, how’s that 20-1 prediction going for you? Right. Anyway, the Lakers have received great play from Andrew Bynum, as he has played at the caliber of an All-Star starter, but it’s apparent that this team really needs Pau Gasol.

5. Cleveland Cavaliers (previous ranking: 11) (7-3)- The Cavs have won four straight and seven of eight since starting the season 0-2. They have really found their stride as of late with the victories. The only thing about it though: everyone else in the Central Division is in a good stride as well.

6. Portland Trail Blazers (previous ranking: 12) (8-3) The Blazers faced some of the lower echelon teams in the league this week, making it an easy 4-0 one for them. They get a big test starting Monday night in Atlanta. Maybe they can move up further facing one of the Association’s better teams.

7. Miami Heat (previous ranking: 4) (7-2) Hard to make the Heat fall even three spots, but with Portland’s 4-0 week and a loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers, it was only right to drop the Heat three spots. Dwyane Wade had a great week, posterizing Anderson Varaejo, and hitting the game-winning three pointer against the Miami Heat.

8. Denver Nuggets (previous ranking: 6) (7-3) The Nuggets didn’t have a bad week, heck, they blew out the Lakers at home, but they were just a victim of Cleveland and Portland rising in the rankings. They did lose to the Bucks, but the Bucks are rising as well.

9. Orlando Magic (previous ranking: 7) (7-3) The Magic handled business like they were supposed to, beating Charlotte and New Jersey, just like Denver, they were victims of two rising teams in the Cavaliers and Trail Blazers. Their only loss this week came to: Cleveland.

10 (tie). Milwaukee Bucks (previous ranking: 13) (5-2) Why aren’t the Bucks higher than the Nuggets? Although this team is good, and really good, led by Brandon Jennings, lets see if this team can get a significant road win or beat a top-10 team. They are playing the team they are tied with in the rankings, the Dallas Mavericks tonight.

10 (tie). Dallas Mavericks (previous ranking: 9) (7-3) The Mavericks lost to the Spurs, but bounced back with wins over Minnesota and Detroit, which are winnable games anyway. They are tied with Milwaukee due to the Bucks’ winning streak. Hard to put them out the top 10, and not put Milwaukee in the top 10. They are in Milwaukee tonight.

12. Houston Rockets (previous ranking: 8) (6-4) Disappointing losses to Dallas and Sacramento contributed to this downfall, but they Rockets’ saving grace was a 101-91 win over the Lakers. Thank Aaron Brooks and his explosive second half for saving the Rockets to a huge drop.

13. Indiana Pacers (previous ranking: 23) (4-3) Four straight wins… the first three weren’t all impressive, but beating the Boston Celtics at home is a huge deal. This team is really coming together and it looks like Tyler Hansbrough is looking pretty good, averaging 10.3 PPG in just 14.7 MPG.

14. Chicago Bulls (previous ranking: 10) (5-4) Crushing loss at home against Denver and a loss to Toronto contributed to the drop from the Top 10. They need to get it back together, especially going on their west coast road trip starting with the upstart Sacramento Kings.

15. Sacramento Kings (previous ranking: 20) (5-4) It’s been over three years since the Kings even had a winning record, but after four straight wins and five of their last six, this is a team that is really buying into Paul Westphal’s system, and the play of Tyreke Evans is amazing. If they can keep this up when Kevin Martin returns, the Kings just might be a problem in the West.

16. Oklahoma City Thunder (previous ranking: 14) (5-5) The Thunder split four games this week, including two with the Clippers, but the most impressive win this week had to be a ROAD win at San Antonio. The Thunder. Big wins at the elite teams can go a long way.

17. San Antonio Spurs (previous ranking: 18) (4-4) They lost to the Thunder at home, but at least this team has Tim Duncan and Tony Parker back. It’s just a matter of time before we see the Spurs back at the top of the list again. The season is still early.

18. Detroit Pistons (previous ranking: 19) (5-5) The Pistons are still a tough team to figure out, but at least you can say that they are winning the games they are supposed to (Charlotte, and Washington before losing to Dallas)

19. Toronto Raptors (previous ranking: 16) (5-5) Still waiting for this team to explode, but now is it really time to question if Jay Triano is the right head coach for this team. They have a big time player in Hedo Turkoglu, a top pick in Andrea Bargnani, and of course, Chris Bosh. Too much talent on this team to be mediocre.

20. Utah Jazz (previous ranking: 22) (4-6) The Jazz still have a way to go to be among the top of the Association, but they did have two wins on the road at New York and Philadelphia, but two losses at Boston and at Cleveland helps them move up, just not much.

21. Philadelphia 76ers (previous ranking: 17) (4-6) Just like last week, this team went 1-2, with the only win going against the winless Nets. It’s going to be even tougher with Mareese Speights being out six to eight weeks due to a knee injury. Where is Elton Brand in all of this? He needs to step up, immediately

22. Los Angeles Clippers (previous ranking: 22) (4-7) The Clippers went 1-3 this week, with the only win coming against Oklahoma City. The Clippers got a huge break from a major drop since the rest of the Association is just plain bad. Even though it is Oklahoma City, this can be the start of something. After all, it just takes one win to get things going.

23. Charlotte Bobcats (previous ranking: 15) The talks of the ‘Cats having an offense dissipated quickly with three lackluster performances in all three games this week. They did get a scorer today in Stephen Jackson from Golden State, along with Acie Law. They had to sacrifice giving up Raja Bell, but the Bobcats need scoring. Desperately.

24. Golden State Warriors (previous ranking: 26) (3-6) The Warriors finally got rid of Stephen Jackson. Maybe this can be the start of something new. The move was made early, so maybe the Warriors can put a reset button on the season. They do need Andris Biedrins to heal so he can be a factor in the post. Don Nelson’s job is safe so it’s time for this team to right the ship, they have a good defender acquired in Raja Bell and Vladimir Radmanovic should be a good three point specialist.

25. New Orleans Hornets (previous ranking: 24) (3-8) If the rest of the NBA was not atrocious, the Hornets would definitely be lower than what they are. Bad move in firing Byron Scott, and now without Chris Paul for three to four weeks. Long season ahead in NOLA. And why bring Tim Floyd back after being dissatisfied with him after one season in any capacity.

26. Washington Wizards (previous ranking: 25) (2-7) Not a good start for the Wizards, mainly b/c the injury bug is back in the District. The question for this team has to be: When is Antawn Jamison coming back to the lineup. The Wizards need ALL three of their players healthy apparently for this team to have any kind of relevance. Still early enough for them to turn it around.

27. Memphis Grizzlies (previous ranking: 28) (2-8) The Grizz got their second win of the season, and are 2-4 without Allen Iverson in the line up. Iverson will be 0-4 in his career in a Grizzlies uniform since he ended up leaving the team and being released today. It’s a shame since he was on the verge of starting. Sucks for Memphis fans and for Michael Heisley who needed a box office attraction. Iverson has plenty of days left in his career, just don’t see it in the NBA anymore.

28. New York Knicks (previous ranking: 29) (1-9) How bad are the Knicks? Apparently so bad that they can LOSE six straight and move UP a spot. Looking at them on SportsCenter really makes you wonder if LeBron would REALLY want to associate himself with a bad franchise like this team. Only time will tell in that regard.

29. Minnesota Timberwolves (previous ranking: 27) (1-10) The Timberwolves have lost 10 straight games, matching the team that they beat on opening night, the New Jersey Nets. In fairness to Minnesota, they don’t have all of their weapons, with Kevin Love out, and Al Jefferson not fully 100 percent. This team will go up a little bit once they come back.

30. New Jersey Nets (previous ranking: 30) (0-10) So no change at the top, and no change at the bottom. Even if the Nets win, they need more wins than Minnesota to get out of this cellar. Like Minnesota, New Jersey doesn’t have everyone on the floor due to injury. Lawrence Frank luckily was not the first coaching casualty, but his leash is VERY short at this point.

Well that’s this week’s edition of the NBA rankings, check back next Monday for next week’s edition.

NFL Recap Week 10

A wild Sunday in the NFL. The battle for the AFC North in the Steel City, the NFC East has tightened up, and two unbeaten teams dealt with two heartstopping games. Let the recap begin…

Atlanta 19, Carolina 28- Jake Delhomme went 15-24 for 195 yards and threw two touchdown passes to Steve Smith, and Jonathan Stewart ran for two more touchdowns, and the Carolina Panthers took out the Atlanta Falcons and split the season series between the two teams. Matt Ryan missed high on two passes for interceptions, and Jason Elam missed a field goal that would have given the Falcons the lead, and instead sent them to their third straight loss. Both teams had key injuries in this game, as Michael Turner left the game with a sprained ankle after having 111 yards on nine carries, leaving Jason Snelling as the only running back in the game for the second half for Atlanta. The Panthers suffered a bigger blow with Jordan Gross out for the rest of the season with a broken ankle. It will be interesting to see how the running game will fare with the main cog of the offensive line out. Falcons (5-4) Panthers (4-5)

Tampa Bay 23, Miami 25- Dan Carpenter kicked four field goals, including the game-winning 25 yard field goal to give the Dolphins a 25-23 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The game had a slow start, but a wild finish, as rookie Josh Freeman marched the Buccaneers on two 4th quarter scoring drives to give Tampa Bay a chance to win the game, and to give them the lead. But Chad Henne led a great drive in the final minute to put the Dolphins in range for victory. Ronnie Brown ran for 82 yards and a touchdown before leaving the game with an injury. He should be ready for the Thursday night game at Carolina. The win for the Dolphins keeps them within striking distance of the playoffs in the AFC. Buccaneers (1-8), Dolphins (4-5)

Detroit 10, Minnesota 27- Adrian Peterson ran for 133 yards on 18 carries with two touchdowns, and Brett Favre threw for a season-high 344 yards, with 201 yards to Sidney Rice, and the Vikings had no trouble dispatching the Detroit Lions for their 12th straight win vs. Detroit at the Metrodome, and sending the Lions to their 31st loss in 33 games. The Vikings overcame self-inflicted turnovers in the first half and forced Matthew Stafford into throwing 51 passes (he completed 29 of them for 224 yards and a touchdown). The Vikings remain in the drivers seat for the NFC North championship. Lions (1-8), Vikings (8-1)

Jacksonville 24, NY Jets 22- Josh Scobee kicked the game-winning field goal as time expired, and gave the surprising Jaguars a big win over the Jets at the Meadowlands. With the Jets out of timeouts with a minute and a half to play, Maurice Jones-Drew ran on a 2nd & 6 from the 10 to the 1 yard line and took a knee, allowing the clock to continue to run, and allowing the Scobee field goal to happen. The two point differential haunts the Jets, since after Thomas Jones’ one yard TD run put the Jets up 22-21, Braylon Edwards dropped the two point conversion pass after a hard hit, which could have forced the Jaguars to tie the game. Instead, it sends the Jets to their fifth loss in the past six games going into their trip to Foxborough and a date with New England next Sunday. Jaguars (5-4), Jets (4-5)

Cincinnati 18, Pittsburgh 12- Shayne Graham kicked four field goals and the Cincinnati Bengals’ defense held the Pittsburgh Steelers to four field goals by Jeff Reed, and the Bengals won in Pittsburgh, snapping the Steelers’ 10-game home winning streak, and taking full control of first place in the AFC North. The Bengals are now 5-0 against their division rivals, sweeping Baltimore and Pittsburgh, and beating Cleveland once. The difference of the game was a 96 yard kickoff return by Bernard Scott. The Steelers’ suffered bad news when Troy Polamalu re-aggravated his previous knee injury, and it is unsure when he will be back. The Steelers are still in the hunt, but they are in a lot of trouble now that Cincinnati has swept them. Bengals (7-2), Steelers (6-3)

New Orleans 28, St. Louis 23- Reggie Bush scored two touchdowns (one rushing, one receiving), and Drew Brees threw for two touchdowns, and Courtney Roby’s 97-yard kickoff return made the difference for the New Orleans Saints as they held off the upset-minded St. Louis Rams 28-23. Marc Bulger threw for 298 yards and two touchdown passes to Donnie Avery, but the Rams came up just short as Bulger drove the Rams to the Saints’ 32 yard line, and missed a hail mary pass. Bush had six carries for 83 yards and a touchdown, along with 15 yards on two catches, and a touchdown. It was his first two touchdown game in over a year. St. Louis went 0-3 against teams that came there unbeaten (Indianapolis 42-6, Minnesota 38-10, New Orleans 28-23), out of all the three losses, the Saints had to be the toughest, since they were the closest. Saints (9-0), Rams (1-8)

Buffalo 17, Tennessee 41- Chris Johnson gained 232 total yards (132 rushing, and 100 receiving), and scored two touchdowns, and Vince Young threw for 210 yards and ran for 29 more, and the Tennesse Titans blew out the Buffalo Bills for their third straight victory after starting the season 0-6. The much maligned Titans secondary had a big day, with Vincent Fuller and Roderick Hood both running back interceptions for touchdown to cap off 24 unanswered points by the Titans after the game was tied at 17. Terrell Owens was a factor having three catches for 85 yards. Rookie Jairus Byrd still having a great season, getting his NFL-leading eighth interception, and having at least one in five straight games, as that was one of the few bright spots for Buffalo on this day. Bills (3-6), Titans (3-6)

Denver 17, Washington 27- Jason Campbell threw for 193 yards and a touchdown, Ladell Betts ran 26 times for 114 yards with a touchdown, but the play of the day was on a 4th & 20, and after TE Todd Yoder splits to the left, the Washington Redskins ran a fake FG and Hunter Smith threw a 35 yard touchdown pass to Mike Sellers and the Washington Redskins went on to snap their four game losing streak, and send the Denver Broncos to their third straight loss after starting the season 6-0. The Broncos got off to a fast start, with Kyle Orton finding Brandon Marshall for two touchdowns of 40 and 75 yards. The game changed however when Orton left the game with a left ankle injury and the Broncos lost their game manager. Chris Simms entered the game, and the Redskins defense was verry opportunistic, making plays and allowing the offensive to make plays in return. Big momentum for the ‘Skins as they go to Dallas, and not what Denver needs going into a home showdown with San Diego. Broncos (6-3), Redskins (3-6)

Kansas City 16, Oakland 10- Jamaal Charles ran for 103 yards on 18 carries, and a difference making 44 yard touchdown run which was the first rushing touchdown of the season for the Chiefs and their secondary got a late interception of the hands of Derrius Heyward-Bey to give Kansas City their seventh straight win in Oakland and their fifth win in the last 35 games. Ryan Succop kicked three field goals, and the Chiefs got their first win after the release of Larry Johnson. JaMarcus Russell was benched in the fourth quarter for Bruce Gradkowski, and Tom Cable will review tapes to see who gives the Raiders the best chance to win. Chiefs (2-7), Raiders (2-7)

Seattle 20, Arizona 31- Kurt Warner went 29-38 for 340 yards, and threw two touchdowns for his 200th career touchdown passes, and Beanie Wells ran for two touchdowns in the second half, and the Arizona Cardinals rallied from two touchdowns down to beat the Seattle Seahawks and keep their two game lead on the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC West. Matt Hasselbeck threw 52 passes with a sore shoulder, completing 26 of them for 315 yards, and T.J. Houshmandzadeh had nine catches for 165 yards. Julius Jones left the game early with a chest injury, but his replacement, Justin Forsett had a big day with 17 carries for 123 yards and a touchdown in the loss. Seahawks (3-6), Cardinals (6-3)

Dallas 7, Green Bay 17- Charles Woodson forced two fumbles and picked off Tony Romo’s pass at the goal line and the Green Bay Packers defense stifled the Cowboys, snapping their four game winning streak, and losing their grip on the NFC East. The Packers had a players’ only meeting after their embarrassing loss to Tampa Bay, and the defense responded by sacking Romo five times, forcing three turnovers, and Rodgers ran for a touchdown and threw for another. It’s a big momentum killer for Dallas, especially with the rivalry game with the Redskins next Sunday. Cowboys (6-3), Packers (5-4)

Philadelphia 23, San Diego 31- LaDainian Tomlinson is back. Motivated by the news of his wife being pregnant, LT ran for 96 yards and scored two touchdowns, along with Phillip Rivers throwing for two touchdowns, and the Chargers held off an Eagles rally to win their fourth straight game and move into a first place tie with the slumping Denver Broncos for first place in the AFC West. Donovan McNabb went 35-55 for 450 yards and threw for two touchdowns in the loss. The Eagles’ Brian Westbrook suffered his second concussion in three weeks and had to leave the game. The Chargers and Broncos will do battle in Denver for first place in the AFC West next Sunday. Eagles (5-4), Chargers (6-3)

New England 34, Indianapolis 35- This has been billed as the “Rivalry of the Decade”, and after tonight, there was without a question. After the Patriots opened up 24-7 lead, the Colts made the game interesting, but business really picked up in the final two minutes, as Bill Belichick made the most questionable call during his tenure as New England Patriots coach. Up 34-28 after a Joseph Addai 4 yard touchdown run, on 4th & 2 at their own 28 yard line, Tom Brady hit Kevin Faulk on a 2 yard pass in which Faulk appeared to have a first down, but was ruled short and the Colts received the ball on downs. Belichick could not challenge the play due to the fact the Patriots ran out of timeouts. Peyton Manning then took charge and threw the game-winning touchdown pass to Reggie Wayne to give the Colts the victory and their 18th consecutive regular season victory. Manning threw for 327 yards and four touchdowns, and Brady threw for 375 yards and three touchdowns. Randy Moss had nine catches for 179 yards, and Reggie Wayne had 10 catches for 126 yards and two touchdowns. It was New England’s first loss after being up 13+ in the final quarter under Belichick, and the win kept Jim Caldwell’s record unblemished as Colts’ coach. Patriots (6-3), Colts (9-0).

That’s it for the recap this week. Be back tomorrow night with the MNF Recap with the Baltimore Ravens and the Cleveland Browns.

Videos of the Week

New feature from TSX, some of the best videos of the week will be put on display. Here were the three best. If something was left out, leave a comment, tweet it at thesportsxpress or leave a comment on the Facebook fan page here:

courtesy: AP

Elizabeth Lambert… Credit has to be given to you despite the fact you displayed very poor sportsmanship. If The Mtn. was not televising this game, she would’ve ACTUALLY got away with all of this. The way she did it was very sneaky, and underhanded, but she did get an indefinite suspension, and maybe anger management should be thrown in there.

Jahvid Best… I hope you have a speedy recovery because that was an ugly play, looking at this play over and over, Cameron Collins of Oregon State did NOT have to throw him the way he did. Fortunately that was a concussion, because it could have been so much worse than that.

This dunk by Dwyane Wade on Anderson Varejao is hands down the dunk of the year, and what makes it even better was the block by Jermaine O’Neal on LeBron James that set it up. Poor Varejao, he will have to go through that dunk on posters and highlights for many years to come. Did you see Wade step over Varejao after the dunk. Clearly we know who’s house it is. The Cavaliers won the game, but still, it’s Wade’s house.

Hope this will be a good feature to do every Friday. Keep an eye out and send feedback.

The Firing of Byron Scott: Fair or Foul?

Yesterday morning, after a 20 pt. loss to the Suns in which they were completely over matched and lacked energy, the New Orleans Hornets fired head coach Byron Scott and GM Jeff Bower takes over as head coach. Citing “philosophical differences” between the coach and some members of the team, Bower felt like the change had to be made and try to turn around a team with high expectations with low patience.

Scott won NBA Coach of the Year in 2008, took over the Hornets in 2004, and after an 18-64 in his first year (and in the Hornets’ first year in the Western Conference), his team landed Chris Paul, and after two sub .500 seasons, he took the team to a 56-26 record, and a seven game Western Conference semi-finals series against the Spurs which ended in a loss, saw high hopes for the next season. The Hornets went 49-33 a year ago and a first round exit, it started to show that at the start of this season, there was clear dissension among the some of the players and coaches. Chris Paul was the only player looking like he wanted to win, while most of the team just sat and watched. This was apparent after the Suns’ game on Wednesday night. After a 3-6 start, Bower decided it was time to make a change and make Scott the first head coaching casualty this season.

The move only spells disaster for the rest of the season. Bouer pretty much is in the same boat Isiah Thomas was in 2007 and Kevin McHale in 2008: You created this team, this is your mess, so you have to fix it. Bower has moved up the Hornets’ team ranks since 1995 and the Charlotte days, and served as an assistant to Tim Floyd and Paul Silas. Coincidentally, Bower has brought Floyd BACK into New Orleans as an assistant coach. Now if Floyd was dismissed after one season as a head coach, what is the chances that he will be a factor with the same franchise if George Shinn (Hornets’ owner) was dissatisfied after one year? Bower signed the big contract to Peja Stojakovic, he signed James Posey after 2008’s run with the Celtics, but he has not received Celtics’ like performance from him. It’s going to be interesting to see if this team can get the ship corrected this season, or will it be blown up.

More importantly, this is going to be a big adjustment for Chris Paul, who has been loyal to the Hornets’ organization and to Byron Scott. Paul is a hard worker, regardless of the situation, but is he going to be that same guy with a new head coach for the first-time in his career. Although the team has struggled, Paul has been silent on the matter, but if you look at some games, it’s starting to show. Looks like some hard times ahead in the Big Easy, but only time will tell.

At the end of this, the firing of Scott was a fair move, but will yield foul results.

Was The Firing of Byron Scott Fair or Foul?
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