All-Star Game Thoughts

There are some interesting storylines that haven’t been discussed on most commercial news networks. We all already know the flurry of trade rumors spinning around the mill. The latest one has the Cavaliers in talks with Phoenix to land Amar’e Stoudemire and asuage the NBA’s golden boy. But that’s not the purpose of this post. So let’s wax All-Star thoughts together, family.

1. It is an extremely dark omen that the one Laker to participate in the NBA All-Star game is not Kobe Bryant. Pau Gasol figures to be a member of the Western Conference All-Stars for many more years to come. If I had to put a number on it, I’d say three. Kobe, however, is winding down. Don’t get me wrong-he’s going to be a member for just as long, maybe longer. But my concern is how long he can hold off the stud that is Brandon Roy for the starting role. For years now Kobe has had a stranglehold on the starting shooting guard position. For years he has been losing his grip on the title of the NBA’s best player. But with LeBron’s emergence as the NBA’s best overall player, he seems to be becoming increasingly vulnerable at this stage in his career. It won’t be long before he is forced to pass the torch, despite his competitive drive; his inner-fire; his burning passion to be the unparalleled best urging him to do the exact opposite. Pretty soon, the only players that will represent the Lakers in the Western All-Star team will be Andrew Bynum and/or Pau Gasol, and I’m as excited for it as I am scared to see the beginning of the Lakers’ slow transition into the post-top dog Kobe era.

2. Did anybody else notice that with the All-Star game being held in Dallas, the Mavericks’ super star Dirk Nowitzki will be playing with his two point guards? Three interesting things sub-stories here: a) the reason Steve Nash even went to Dallas was because he wasn’t getting playing time in Phoenix. b) Dirk was drafted two years later and traded to Dallas while Nash was soon picked up by Dallas and both were to be integral in the development of one another, as well as making the city a perennial contender c) the guy that was Mark Cuban’s impetus for allowing Nash to walk into free agency and land with his former team was soon traded for Jason Kidd, who was brought into Dallas to help them regain their status as an NBA elite instead of a has-been. Now, back in the city that links all three of them, Kobe has stepped down, paving the way for the three of them to participate on the same All-Star team together in one united effort: make Dirk the MVP. It’s funny how things come full circle sometimes.

Since I just wrote an entire paragraph on Steve Nash's greatness, I have to remind everyone of his rightful place: about eye-level with Kobe's crotch.

3. In yet another strange turn of events, with Kobe not playing tonight, Steve Nash just might be the best player on the Western Conference All-Star team. If you know me, this is almost blasphemous. The West is littered with talent, both young and old. Hot newcomers like Kevin Durant and Brandon Roy, or year-around mainstays like Tim Duncan, Carmelo Anthony, and Dirk Nowitzki. We know Melo is the man. We know Timmy is the best power forward of all-time. And we know that KD is one of the best young players in all the land. Still, the engine that makes the West go is Nash. At this stage in his and his peers’ careers, he’s the best combination of smarts, abilities, and execution. He is not at all a good defensive player, but that doesn’t matter in the All-Star game. This is why he’s the best player in this game: he’s the perfect All-Star player. He’s all offense and no defense, and his offense is 10x’s better than your average point guard. He will find guys, see things the opponents don’t, see things coming before they even begin to develop, and then execute all of the above. On top of all that, he’s shooting a ridiculous 51% from the field and 43% from three-point range, which means he’ll knock down open shots all day if you try to make him a scorer. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I really do believe he’s the best player that is going to take the floor in tonight’s All-Star game for the purposes of All-Star competition.

4. Will Ron Jeremy Stan Van Gundy continue his season-long embargo on getting Dwight Howard the ball? Seriously, the hedgehog is the only reason Dwight isn’t dominating the league’s DPOY voting. He’s still the best center in the NBA, but his numbers are severely hampered. To his credit, he doesn’t mind at all. In fact, the only thing that irks him is that his team isn’t winning as much as it should. The Magic continue to work the outside-inside game instead of vice versa, despite their inside-man being the most talented and dominant player on their team. It will be fun to see if he does the same thing tonight, or if the great passers on the Eastern squad will ignore their porn-star doppleganger coach and utilize Dwight’s ridonkulous athletic abilities.

...what's the difference?

5. Rajon Rondo is the best of the three Celtic representatives. Don’t get it twisted-I wouldn’t want him taking the last shot if the game were on the line(he’d probably pass up a jumpshot in an attempt to get a running start at a floater). I would, however, give him the keys to my franchise. He can play with anybody. ANYBODY. Paul Pierce is showing that he’s not the player he used to be, lying to himself in order to win a meaningless All-Star award, the three-point contest. In fact, after I watched him win, I watched his painful in-your-face “acceptance” speech reminiscent of the famous Kevin Garnett “WHAT CAN YOU SAY NOW?” comment after winning his first and only championship with the Celtics in game 6 of the 2007-2008 NBA Finals. I called this. In case you don’t remember my 5 Things I Learned While Watching LAL@BOS post.

If you’re too lazy to click, note these exacts words: “I’m impressed with his(Pierce) efficiency this year, and I do not want to see him pulling up in transition off a Rajon Rondo pass and spotting up for three against my beloved Lakers. Absolutely not. Give me Rasheed Wallace, Eddie House, or Gregory House, M.D. from Fox; not Paul Pierce.”

Thank you, Paul, for announcing to the world that you’re no longer the Celtic that the rest of the league should fear the most. That honor now goes to Rondo, who is the best player on the Celtics, and the best player representing them at the All-Star game in Dallas.

6. I wonder if LeBronze, Dwayne Wade, and Chris Bosh single out Carmelo anytime the four get together. If not for Darko Milicic, theywould be the top 4 draft picks of the 2003 draft. Instead, they’re 4 of the top 5. ‘Bron, D-Wade, and CB4 all play in the East, so they meet four times a year, while Melo meets with each of them twice a year. Even in the Olympic games, it seemed like Melo was busy bonding with Kobe, while the others were busy clowning around with each other and learning from Kobe from an adjacent but distant space. To me, Melo is the odd-man out, and I wonder if he gets hazed at all anytime the three hang out together, waking up with a drawn-on goatee or some shaving cream on his face and his hand that got their because they tickled his face with a feather while he was sleeping. In fact, I’m almost positive that the reason he no longer sports corn-rows is because they shaved them off in his sleep, only he was too embarrassed to tell anybody, so he made it seem like it was a conscious decision. It just so happened that everybody liked the new look, calling it a sign of maturity, and he stuck with it. Man, hypothetical Bron, D-Wade, and CB4 are jerks.

7. Will Al Jefferson ever make it to the All-Star game? Jeff is more talented than Zach Randolph, Chris Kaman, and Amar’e. He has more in his arsenal than all of the above, is way more competitive than all of them, and is an overall better guy than all of them too. You’ll never hear him complain like Amar’e; you’ll never hear him lash out at the Lakers’ bigs for getting All-Star nods like Kaman; and you’ll never see him bounce(fat people bounce) around the NBA like Z-Bo. He’s a great player, a great guy, and far be it for me to say, a far more deserving candidate than some of the NBA’s last three years of big men.

If you disagree with any of those, it’s because a) you don’t know much about him, b) you never saw him play, and c) you think All-Stars should be picked off winning teams. If it’s A or B, you’re missing out. If it’s C, I’ll be glad to engage you in a discussion that will not end until you relent the archaic notion that great players on bad teams should not be All-Stars.

Till next time.

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3 Responses to “All-Star Game Thoughts”

  1. sam Says:

    lebron look sour as hail

  2. Klasky Says:

    I’d love to see Al Jeff in an all star game. The game itself just isnt necessarily for him IMO, hes not gonna do ally oops like amare, but hes by far the better player. Note to Amare, defense is half the game, maybe more lol

  3. sam Says:

    I hear al jeff doesn’t play much defense either. from what I hear, he’s nothing more than a slightly more athletic version of z randolph

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