End of the Bench, Volume 2.1
Welcome back!! We are now two days from the start of the 2011-12 NBA season, something that End of the Bench thought he might not get to say this year. But have no fear, EOTB is already in mid-season form, and ready to roll for what promises to be an intriguing season on many levels. Can the Heat make good on their championship promise? Has the window closed on the Celtics? Are the Thunder the favorites in the West? Which presidential tattoo will DeShawn Stevenson get next? So many questions!
As part of The Crab Dribble’s ongoing effort to provide you with as much basketball knowledge, insight and craziness as possible, End of the Bench is locking in a spot on Friday mornings this season. As always, check out the podcast, like us on Facebook, and don’t be afraid to find me on Twitter at @TCDJason.
So with no further ado, let’s take it all in from the best seat in the house.
– Imagine having your employer try to get rid of you, very publicly, at least twice, only to fail. Then imagine showing up for work everyday and trying to give your best effort to that employer. Now you know what OJ Mayo feels like. Yes, basketball is a business and trades happen. But it still can’t be easy to show up to a place where they clearly don’t want you.
– Chauncey Billups may not have been pleased about getting cut in New York, but there are worse things than playing with Blake Griffin, right Chauncey?
– Jumping on the “no-respect” train, Shawn Marion isn’t pleased that people are talking about other teams besides the defending-champion Mavericks, claiming “y’all are trying to take something away from us that we worked hard for.” Umm…what? Is someone trying to take away Dallas’ 2011 championship? Did a media member steal their trophy? What exactly is being taken away? EOTB’s head is spinning.
– Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez is apparently dating Kate Upton. Technically, this has nothing to do with the NBA, but it gives EOTB an excuse to link to pictures of Kate Upton, for which we can all be grateful.
– EOTB has watched the Cavaliers and Pistons play each other twice this preseason. Twice. Is there therapy for this?
– As has been pointed out, the Knicks signed Baron Davis to a one-year deal. The 2011-12 season is 66 games, spanning approximately 18 weeks. Davis is expected to be out 8-10 weeks with a back injury. Am I missing something?
– Gotta admit…EOTB is ready for the Jimmer era to begin.
– So let me get this straight. The Lakers don’t consult with Kobe Bryant before hiring a new coach. They allow Shannon Brown to leave, replacing him with someone named Andrew Goudelock. They almost blow up their roster to get Chris Paul, only to have the deal nixed at the last minute. They move reigning Sixth Man of the Year Lamar Odom, to a bitter rival, for nearly nothing. And they will start the season without Andrew Bynum (suspension), and possibly Kobe (wrist injury). Things certainly seem to be going swell in LA, wouldn’t you agree?
– Is it just me, or is Orlando, home of notorious whiners Dwight Howard and Stan Van Gundy, a perfect fit for someone nicknamed Big Baby?
– EOTB is an adamant supporter of the Miami Heat, but the signing of Eddy Curry left him scratching his head. Sure, the Heat need some bodies up front. But Curry is notoriously lazy, chronically overweight, and hasn’t played meaningful minutes since the 2007-08 season. Not exactly a recipe for success.
– Can anyone offer definitive proof that the Raptors still exist?
– And finally, James Harden and the beard take flight during a preseason game. Thunder Up!
Jason Brubaker is a blogger for The Crab Dribble and author of End of the Bench, a weekly column of NBA musings. You can follow him on Twitter at @TCDJason.