What Color is Your Field ?

By Lamar Battle

Reprinted from 2014 and just in time for football season !

I noticed during a recent Chicago Bears loss to the Green Bay Packers the grass in Soldier Field, home of the Chicago Bears had a yellowish hue,

The field was pock marked with divots and appeared to have sections that were patched in. In an era where NFL teams showcase state of the art stadiums with thick synthetic grass with rubber pellets that simulate dirt and minimize injuries It’s curious that the Bears would subject a million dollar product ( the players) to sub standard conditions.

As a matter fact around the country there are stadiums that are truly spectacular.
The flag ship may be AT@T (Home of the Cowboys) Stadium in Texas which has hosted an NBA All Star game and is slated for future final fours and super bowls. So impressive is this domed facility that tours are conducted year round. Detroit’s ( yes I said Detroit) Ford Field boast a roof, first rate turf and four levels of sky boxes located over seats that provide all of the fans great views.

Then there’s the Super Dome in New Orleans, enough said. Houston, Atlanta, St Louis and Indianapolis all sport domed stadiums where fans are always comfortable. In the case of Phoenix there is a stadium that transports the entire field in and out with the use of a sophisticated system of rollers thus ensuring that natural grass can be used in a domed stadium with a retractable roof. Imagine what that must have cost ?

Of course everyone knows that we reside in the city of big shoulders where player and fan alike endure the elements in some sort of weird display of entertainment machismo. Even in the presence of tornado warnings Bear fans just retire to the concourse area until the threat is over.

Could it be that tradition and loyalty are time tested ways to save money at the expense of working people ? On many fronts Chicago is considered to be a world class city but we always seem to roll out discounted amenities. The 300 section in th United Center is so high ( In a building that seats over 21,000) that fans have to watch the game on the Jumbo Tron. U.S. Cellular Field once had seats so high and steep that fans were afraid of falling out to the field. Wrigley Field amounts to a 1950’s era park with the allure of bars and restaurants in the surrounding area to appease the faithful.

Now, I must admit that Soldiers Field is not hard on the eyes and it does boast a splendid view of the Chicago skyline, but basically we are just talking about additional seats heaped on top of what was left of the old stadium. Of course, owners of any team can choose whatever design they desire, considering that taxpayers never contribute ( pun intended) and most owners sell stadium naming rights to corporations for peanuts.

Today, stadiums can utilize sun and rain shades for fans on upper levels while leaving the playing surface exposed. Millers Park in Milwaukee boast a retractable roof. Can you believe that ? A retractable roof in Milwaukee? must have cost a fortune.

Seems interesting that two of the cities with the biggest income discrepancies between rich and poor also offer two of the worst football stadiums. The accused are Chicago and New York.

To be honest, a game at Soldier Field is not so bad unless of course, It happens to be raining or 20 degrees outside.

Can Jimmy Butler And Derrick Rose Co Exist ?

” I am a point guard”.

With those recent words Bulls shooting guard Jimmy Butler told Bulls.com that he and Derrick Rose will be a force to be reckoned with going forward or he announced to the world that after claiming the mantle of team leader during last seasons playoffs he is now asking for control of the ball and offense.

Here’s what we Know:

In his fourth season Jimmy Butler (22.9 ppg 44.1 fg% 38.9 3pt% ) per Bulls.com, established himself as a first time All-Star and one of the best two way players in the NBA,

Former MVP Derrick Rose is returning after a successful season ( 20.3 ppg 39.6 fg% 34.8 3pt% ) per Bulls.com, and is working to re-establish himself after a history of injuries as one of the top players in the NBA.

It was alleged Derrick and Jimmy did not get along last season and during the playoffs
Jimmy has to this point offered explanations and insist that he and Derrick are ok and will be united in their desire to win a championship.

Derrick has said little to nothing about the alleged rift.

The Bulls hired 1st time head coach Fred Hoiburg to bring together what was described by some as a toxic locker room during last season.

What are the prospects ?

Per distinguished NBA writer Sam Smith in response to Jimmy Butler’s assertion. ” It sounds like a joke for the guy who was supposed to be a small forward replacement for Luol Deng. But having another guard who can handle the ball and allow Rose to play off the ball with Butler’s defensive prowess provides a potentially exceptional and previously unknown element to the Bulls arsenal. ”

This to me sounds like solid analysis however, isn’t it possible for Jimmy Butler to accomplish all of the above from the two guard position ?

Isiah Thomas and Joe Dumars were one of the pre-eminent back courts in NBA history as they shared ball handling duties with each being capable of initiating the offense for the Detroit Pistons.

There were times when Isiah would operate from the wing position and move without the basketball, Joe Dumars would do the same depending on match ups and or tactical advantages.

What I find interesting is Joe Dumars never announced to the world first that he is the team leader and then he plays the position of his teams established point guard who just happens to be a league MVP.

On the surface Jimmy Butler’s new found confidence could just be a natural changing of the guard (no pun intended ). However it begs to question, how does Derrick Rose feel about all of this ? Is Derrick in agreement with Jimmy ? Will he abdicate leadership? Should he?

Maybe a review of game six of last years eastern conference finals could prove instructive where Derrick Rose seemingly backed off during the late stages of the game when the Cleveland Cavaliers turned it into a rout.

There were those who theorized that Derrick was giving Butler room to prove he could carry the team, whether he was or not, it was not a pretty sight for a team that returns it’s entire roster for the up-coming season.

The success of the Chicago Bulls this season could hinge on a rookie coach’s ability to forge this group of alpha males into a cohesive unit.

Are The Cavaliers On The Verge Of An NBA Title ?

Sight seen. Golden State Warrior star guard and league MVP Stephen Curry leaving the court after a loss by his team by the Cleveland Cavaliers 96 to 91 in game 3 of the NBA finals.

As Curry left the floor his head was down and shaking from side to side clearly displaying his disappointment in going down two games to one in this best of seven series.

Curry had his best game of the series leading his team with a game high 27 points but it was not enough to stymie Lebron James and the Cavs who through three games have somehow managed to control the tempo of each contest.

Who knows what was going through Curry’s mind at the time ? Maybe he wished he could be playing better or maybe his team mates could’ve upped their games ?
Nevertheless, walking off the court at the end of a key game with your head down was not good form.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are deliberate and physical and they have basically dictated the terms of battle. On defense the Cavs are jamming cutters and contesting shots. Power forward Tristan Thompson (pressed into duty after the season ending injury to starter Kevin Love) has been on a Moses Malone like tear in attacking the offensive glass.

The Cavs have successfully used their size advantage to discourage drives to the basket as they enjoyed a 44 to 36 advantage on points in the paint while holding the Warriors to 40% shooting overall.

On offense Lebron James enjoys dissecting the Warrior defense from the post as keeps the pressure on with strong moves to the basket and laser like passes to open team mates.

With the exception of Steph Curry the Warriors are a rhythm shooting team but in surrendering the pace and tone of the game the Warriors have allowed the Cavaliers to crack their offensive code.

To have a chance to even the series the Warriors will need to force Cavalier defenders, particularly Timofey Mozgov and Thristan Thompson to defend the entire floor.

To accomplish this the Warriors have to utilize more ball movement particularly from side to side while probing the defense for weaknesses.

On defense the Warriors need to assign two players to follow JR Smith and Iman Shumpert everywhere ( use crazy glue if needed).

To be fair, this series is a long ways from over but then I return to Mr. Curry walking off the floor with his head down.

You see part of the stark beauty of the Finals is that to win an NBA title a team must be willing to raise their level of intensity to near injury levels ( Cleveland is there) and most importantly, experience teaches that psychological tactics are in full effect.

Steph Curry’s gesture could very well just be an honest expression of disappointment but as the leader of his team he appeared defeated and that my friend, is never appropriate during the NBA Finals with your team watching. (Contrast Curry’s exit to LeBron leaving the court after a game one Cleveland loss. He was pissed and he was defiant)

If the Warriors can remember who they are while raising their level of intensity this could become really interesting really fast. But?

Who will win the prize ?

Can’t say for sure but there is a pretty good chance that by this time next year we could looking at the next U.S. Senator from the great state of Ohio…..LeBron James.

Is The Window Closed For The Bulls Title Hopes ?

By Lamar Battle

Home loss against the Cavs in a game that saw the Bulls seemingly quit.

The Bulls lost in six games to a Cavalier team akin to a wounded animal. Starting power forward Kevin Love was out for the playoffs and starting point guard Kyrie Irving was seriously hampered with an injured ankle.

Could the Bulls finally get past long time foe ( and soon to be G.O.A.T.) Lebron James 53120-derrick-rose-chicago?

No !

What seemed to happen was a Bulls team that literally gave up and accepted defeat in front of the home faithful. The once vaunted Chicago defense started taking on water and the players suddenly appeared to forget how to score.

Did coach Thibodeau fail to make the needed adjustments for victory?

Former Bulls coach( as of today) Thibs was the subject of a season long feud with Bulls General Manager Gar Forman and team V.P. of Basketball Operations John Paxson.
Coach Thibodeau was undermined in front of his team from the start of the season ( key players were approached and told the coach does not have teir backs) establishing him as a lame duck coach.

To be fair, Thibs was accused constantly of overworking his players ( possibly contributing to key injuries) and perhaps suffering from a lack of offensive creativity in his play calling.

There were adjustments that could have been made on offense.

But, there is a flip side.

What if the Cavalier game was lost in January when a players mini mutiny almost cost coach Thibs his Job? Bulls players were harping on each other for not working hard enough while simultaneously complaining that that the coach was working them too hard.

What if coach Thibodeau lost his team at that point ( in January) when, after calling for a team practice he was over ruled by John Paxson who suggested instead that the team have a meeting where players could voice their concerns.

These were indeed uncharted waters for the Bulls, an organization that always seemed to avoid the type of coach killing players that always popped up on mediocre teams.
Bulls management has always suffered through acrimonious relationships with their coaches but players rarely if ever got themselves involved.

One thing is certain, when a coach loses his platform as the leader it doesn’t matter much which offensive and defensive schemes he employs.

What if the Bulls lacked the personnel to compete against the Cavaliers of the world ? Pau Gasol was old, Joakim Noah, Kirk Hinrich and Taj Gibson were getting old and unlike the Cavaliers, Spurs, Blazers, Warriors and Rockets the Bulls possessed only one player who could create for himself and others, ( Derrick Rose).

The NBA is a players league that is changing as we speak. Teams are trending towards 3 point shooting, speed, length and athleticism.

Maybe, just maybe the Bulls were running the sets best suited for their personnel?

What if any moves need to be made by the Bulls to rebound ?

The team has rights to the 22nd pick in this years draft so don’t expect much help there.
The team has immediate needs in rebounding and shot blocking ( for those of us who caught Tristan Thompson’s one man destruction of the Bulls front line).

Basically, playing time has too be found for young players like Tony Snell, Nikola Mirotic’ and Doug McDermott.
Picking up a tall scoring back up point guard would also be a step in the right direction and as hard as it may seem, tough decisions have to be made regarding Hinrich, Noah and Gibson.

This all leads us to the question?

Is the championship window for this current Bulls version closed ?

Answer: How long before LeBron James turns forty?

Are The Chicago Bulls Soft ?

When did things start to change?

Chicago Sun-times columnist Rick Telander suggested that he resembles a big rusty anchor. The person of note is one Zaza Pachulia, starting center for the Milwaukee Bucks. Blog co-conspirator A.J. suggested that up to game two of the NBA playoff series between the Chicago Bulls and the Milwaukee Bucks the Bulls were more or less having their way.

Only after an incident during game two when Zaza hit Bulls forward Nikola Mirotic’ in the back of the head only to follow later with another elbow to the head during a scrum did this series actually become a series.

Of course this could be a bit of a stretch to suggest that this incident was the catalyst for a Milwaukee resurgence but after it happened the Bucks took the Bulls to triple overtime and then defeated them twice prior to game six scheduled for Thursday night in Milwaukee.

During the Buck victories Zaza Pachulia could be clearly seen literally taking the ball right out of the hands of Bulls players after rebounds.

The Bulls have tough players I mean Derrick Rose is from Chicago’s Englewood community and others like Kirk Hinrich, Joakim Noah and Jimmy Butler back down from no one.

But it wasn’t until game three where 161 pound back up point guard Aaron Brooks landed a punch in the chest of Bucks guard Jarryd Bayless that I was reminded that he may have been the first Bulls player since former center Bill Cartwright to fire off a retaliatory foul for his team.

Now a team does not have to be well versed in the art of hand to hand combat to win a championship but it was interesting to see Nikola Mirotic’ approach Aaron after the punch to offer comfort, support and probably thanks.

Intimidation is and has always been a part of sport and teams normally address it by maintaining focus and execution however the Bulls now have a hungry, well coached and motivated team in their way.

The Answer ?

The answer is no, the Bulls are not a soft team . They have historically been a defensive oriented team even during the halcyon years of Micheal and Scottie.
These Bulls are known for a physical brand of defense which includes fighting aggressively through screens and chucking cutters coming through the lane.

What may be lacking is the need for time spent together during this injury ravaged season. That is one of the reasons Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau kept stressing the need for increased practice time.
Injuries to key players have played a part in inhibiting the progress needed to improve defensively.

The team, as it currently stands is engaged in a bit of a dog fight with a young, long, athletic and suddenly awake Milwaukee Bucks team and the Bulls may have to take advantage of their experience by controlling game tempo and by exploiting their size advantage.

In the meantime:

Bucks guard Middleton is a deadly shooter, stay home on defense !

Forward Giannis Antetokounmpo must be kept out of the lane as he and point guard Micheal Carter Williams are poor outside shooters. Play off of them and step up high to cut off dribble penetration when they drive.

Center Zaza ( the aforementioned anchor) Pachulia is not a shot blocker and should be challenged off the drive…If you dare.

And finally the Bulls might want to send in a big man to follow Rose or Brooks as they attack the lane. Drive and dish opportunities along with lob passes should result.

The Bucks collapse their entire defense at the first inkling of dribble penetration. The Bulls guards should pass out to shooters where the resulting second or third pass rotations should lead to wide open shots.

Next up? The Cavaliers and Vader.


Love and Basketball : Ferguson Missouri

Anthony Powers Love and Ball

11/26/ 14
Much of the language of the following was taken directly from transcripts of Darren Wilson’s grand jury testimony in the police murder of Michael Brown.

So here’s what happened. I ‘m in my police SUV patrolling Lincoln Street in New Lenox, IL. I see these two male whites walking in the middle of the street. It’s a hostile territory. They don’t like blacks too much in this area. I often see guys standing on corners with Obama in Hitler mustache and Swastika signs.
A robbery was called in a little earlier in the day. Two male whites had allegedly stolen some cigars. We take cigar theft and jaywalking real seriously in these parts.
I notice that the larger male white has marijuana socks. I notice this because he has on basketball shorts. He also has strange tattoos. I drive along-side them and say: “Hey fellas, why don’t you get on the sidewalk.” The smaller male white replies: “We’re almost to our destination.” I ask them, “What’s wrong with the sidewalk, guys?” At that point the larger male white comes around the mirror and says: “Fuck what you have to say.”
I was taken aback by his response. I guess he had a real thing about sidewalks.
Suddenly I see the larger male white has some Cigarillos in his hand. I realized that the two male whites match the description of the alleged Cigar thieves. They are male whites. And the Cigarillos I suddenly see in his hands are a dead giveaway. They are prime suspects!
They keep walking in the middle of the street. I call for backup. I position the SUV to cut them off. As I move to get out the car, I tell the larger male white: “Hey, come here a minute.” He turns and faces me, and says: “What the fuck you gonna do about it?” I say, “about what? He says, “about it”. I say, “about what it”. He says, “about it”. I guess that’s just the way these thugs talk.
Then in a flash, before I can get out the car, he slams the door shut. I tell him to get back but he just stares as me, like to intimidate or overpower me. It was definitely an overpowering look. His face was intense, like a beast. I tell him, “get the fuck back” and push my door at him. He pushes my door back, ducks into the car window, and begins to punch me in the face. Then he stops punching me in the face, hands the Cigarillos’ to his friend (Cigarillos are obviously a prize possession in this ghetto), saying “My man, hold these while I kick this armed cops ass in his patrol car”.
He is on foot and I am in a Police SUV with backup on the way. This gives the large white male the advantage over me. These thugs are very athletic you know. And mean. That’s why they dominate Hockey. And football offensive lines.
He had already hit me twice. The two punches grazed me. I am certain a third would’ve killed me. Or put me in a wheelchair for life. These large white males can really hit. You ever see a hockey fight?
I grab the large male white’s arm and pull out my gun. I say: “Get back or I’m going to shoot you!” He says: “You are too much of a pussy to shoot me”. I say: “Huh?” He says: “You are too much of a pussy to shoot me.” I say: “Me being a pussy has nothing to do me being able to shoot you”. He says: “yes it does”. I say: “no it doesn’t”. He says: “yes it does.”
He reaches in and grabs my gun. This wasn’t covered in my police academy training for apprehending a crazed male white from within your stationary vehicle. He pushes the gun into my leg and pushes his finger into the trigger area. Then I somehow manage to push the gun up and at him in spite of his superior strength, leverage and animal rage. He continues to hold the gun. I guess he really did think I was a pussy. I pull the trigger until it goes off. Glass and blood falls on my hand.
He steps back and looks at me with this intense aggressive face. He had this real angry look. The only way I can describe it is like a blue eyed devil.
He comes at me again. I shield my face as he punches me again. While shielding my face, I fire two more times. Now he knows I’m definitely not a pussy. He begins to run, followed by a cloud of dust. Like a horse in old western.
I call again for more cars. I get out the car a begin give chase. Suddenly he stops and turns around to face me. At this point I really wish he would make up his mind as to whether or not I am a pussy.
I tell him to get on the ground. He grunts. Stamps his feet menacingly. He is like the Incredible Hulk and I am like a five year old. He gives out an aggravated growl. Then he barks. He comes at me, his hands reaching under his shirt. Oh my God, I think to myself, he must have a gun in his basketball shorts. Those whites wear them real baggy to accommodate their large….
Anyway, he’s coming at me. I begin repeatedly firing at him. I know I hit him at least once because he flinches again. At this point it looks like he is almost bulking up to run through the shots, like it is making him mad that I’m shooting at him. And the face that he has is looking straight through me, like I’m not even there, like I’m not even anything in his way.
It is then that I realize he is a mutant.
I am backpedaling quickly. I know if this mad white male mutant reaches me he’ll crush me like a tin beer can. He’ll pull my eyes out my skull. He’ll eat my children. He’ll knock me into a state of Bolivia.
When he gets ten to eight feet away, all I can see through my sites is his big ass head, so that’s what I shot. The demeanor on his face goes blank, the aggression is gone, it is gone, I mean, I know he stops, the threat is stopped. This is what tends to happen when you shoot a young large (as in my height) male white in the head. Having successfully stood my ground against overwhelming odds, I could only mutter to myself: “Told you I wasn’t a pussy”.
So here’s the question for you, Dear Reader: Do I get arrested? Properly investigated? Charged? Given opportunity to present the above case to the grand jury without cross examination? Given the opportunity to have the District Attorney prosecuting the case as my de-facto Public Defender? Assured that the foregone conclusion would be never having to suffer the inconvenience of an indictment and trial?

Is the media sympathetic to me? What is the reaction from the New Lenox community?

By the way: note from the County Prosecuting Attorney: Every single eye witness to the events from the New Lenox community is either too much of a liar, too emotional, too much of a criminal element, or too dumb to be credible.
So this is Love and Basketball. Here’s the basketball. Stay with me here. I recently read Roland Lazerby’s; Show: The Inside Story of the Spectacular Los Angeles Lakers , a great oral history of arguably the premiere franchise in NBA history. From George Mikan and Jay Pollard, Kareem and Magic through Shaq and Kobe, no franchise other than the Celtics represent the whole of NBA’s short history like the Lakers. Ran across this story: Jack Kent Cook, the Laker’s owner who preceded Jerry Buss and the emergence of Showtime, was at a restaurant shortly after a doctor’s appointment. The doctor called and congratulated him for having “the constitution of a 25 year old man and the heart of an ox.” Cook hangs up the phone and immediately has a heart attack. He survives, and when his mother visits him at the hospital, he informs her that he had actually “died” for 30 seconds. His mother replies: “Tell me Jack, which way were you going? Heaven or hell?
I wonder if Officer Darren Wilson’s and County Prosecuting Attorney Robert McCulloch’s mamas would have the same question

Kobe Bryant

Love and Basketball

Love and Ball

By Anthony Powers

It’s twenty three degrees outside this cloudy day in Chicago. Winter did not tarry getting here this year. But it could be worse. It could be Buffalo, currently buried… I mean literally buried…I mean folk trapped under snow inside their homes waiting for rescue by the National Guard buried. I know the climate change delusional deniers have an appropriately pseudo-scientific explanation for this. I’m waiting…

Anyway, am thankful and blessed to be in a warm home, while we await the grand jury down there in Ferguson Mississippi circa 1963 where they jailed Fannie Lou Hamer and beat her damn near to death Missouri to determine the current value of a large young black man’s life. This value, as you know, shifts like that of other publically traded commodities, although always kept artificially low except in various entertainment industries.

There is palpable fear in the air. The Nigras are getting restless. A state of emergency is declared in St Louis, and 400 National Guard troops deployed. National Guard troops are deployed around Ferguson because they must be contained. Ladies and gentlemen of these United States of America, this is the greatest gonna-be crisis since the Saudi Arabian oil scion orchestrated the destruction of the Twin Towers! Hide your valuables! Send away your daughters! Call out the troops! Call out Blackwater! Keep your military assault rifles trained on families engaged in anti- American sitting on the porch activities. Shoot to kill! Bring in the drones! Keep those niiii….urban prospective rioters and otherwise senselessly and irrationally angry Black People in their place at all costs!

After all, if Michael Brown didn’t want to get shot, he shouldn’t have run so fast. And who can blame a peace officer when confronted with a large black young man with a bullet in him and his hands raised? Don’t you know what damage a large black young man (LBYM) can do to an armed officer if he has a bullet in him and his hands raised? He’s a mad wounded beast!!! No wonder the District Attorney find the very notion of charging the officer profoundly and historically distasteful. That man was fighting for his life!!!!

Flipping back and forth between MSNBC and the game after coming in from the cold. The Kings vs. Pelicans. Boogie vs. The Destroyer. Boogie is a load. Boogie got crazy skills. Literally. Boogie gets down in the lane and pushes people around like Moses Malone. Big men tumble off his shoulders. He spends the first half…maybe three quarters of the game alternating from whupping that ass in the lane to channeling his inner Lebron…skying for the board, pushing the ball on the break, dishing to open teammates with precision. Boogie’s got 24 on 10 for 18 shooting, 17rebounds, 3 assists and 2 blocks for the upstart Pels. All appears to be well in Boogie World. And then…and then…well a couple things happen.

Anthony Davis gives his team exactly what it needs every time he’s on the floor. With his protector, Asik sidelined with a back injury, the team needed someone to match Boogie’s ability to wreck a defense. Enter The Destroyer with a smooth and totally in the flow of the game 28 points on 11-19 shooting, 9 rebounds, 3 blocks and 2 steals. Need somebody to bend space and time to create wide open pastures for Ryan Anderson to bomb away for 22? To extend rim protection out to the three point line? To turn away interlopers into the lane..I mean actually turn them around by suddenly removing the lane as an option..at critical moments in the game flow? To dive to the floor for a critical steal? Here’s the scoop: Anthony Davis is not from here. He’s from a place, far far away. Maybe the same planet or at least solar system that produced the Honorable Bill Russell, the brilliant underappreciated Kareem (I mean he had to advocate for his own statue in LA? What??? Did he really piss that many people off with his idiosyncricities, much having to do with his stereotype-defying intelligence), and the GOAT power forward /de facto center Tim Duncan.

And then…Boogie’s team collapses around him. Collison reminds everyone he’s not a floor general. He’s more of a floor private. They stop giving Boogie the ball. Unforced turnovers. Wild jacked up shots. Rudy Gay deciding to challenge Mr. Davis at the rim, giving Davis opportunity to go all Mr. Fantastic on him. AND THEY STOP GIVING BOOGIE THE BALL. After blowing a 24 point lead to the Mavericks, and a 26 point lead to the Grizz…do you see a trend? Nevertheless, man was this fun.

Some other random reflections on Love and Ball:

Kobe sets the record for most missed shots. This is great catnip for the Kobe haters, the MJ idolizers, and those who live in fear of intelligent confident gifted Black men. Yes Kobe has…um let me see just off the top of my head…feuded with coaches, high-jacked offenses with one on one play, destroyed teammates with his pathological competitiveness and ruthless intimidation, stormed out of practices, threatened to go to the Knicks, punched out Steve Kerr, and retired having gunned the fifth most missed shots behind John Havlicek, Elvin Hayes, Karl Malone, and Kareem. Opps…that’s not Kobe. That’s the lord thy baller Michael Jordan. And MJ played fewer years than all of the above.

Kobe was no different than MJ in his approach to the game. MJ was just better at it. And was a lot better in PR in an era before the onset of omni-media coverage of professional sports and sports celebrity.

Unless one is prepared to dismiss the careers of Hondo, The Big E, The Mailman, Kareem and MJ, one shouldn’t dismiss Kobe’s accomplishments over a cosmetic stat. The most missed shots is really an indicator of sustained offensive brilliance over time. And maybe we should

acknowledge the astonishing fact that Kareem was first in scoring all-time but only fifth in misses.

I agree with Noah. Everybody needs to chill the fuck out about Rose. In fact, Rose needs to chill the fuck out about Rose. Note to the fandom…it’s not the athlete’s fault if he is beset with injuries in the course of the game. If he needs to sit and be cautious for him to get to the playoffs in one piece…so be it! Grow up, Bull’s fans and keep the main thing the main thing. This is a team with a short window opportunity to contend for a title, dammit! I don’t care if Rose sits with a sprained ankle in November if he’s dive bombing to the rim come June. Note to Rose: nobody cares about your retirement plans. Just do you and everything will be alright. Or it won’t. That is the nature of sports, and of life. That’s why we walk by faith and not by sight.

I got love for Michelle Roberts. “I don’t know of any space other than the world of sports where there’s this notion that we will artificially deflate what someone’s able to make, just because,” she said, talking about a salary cap — a collectively bargained policy that, in its current form, has constrained team spending in the NBA since 1984-85. “It’s incredibly un-American. My DNA is offended by it.” Giancarlo Stanton just signed a contract with MLB’s Miami Marlins for $325 million over 13 years. That’s $25 million per. LeBron James’ contract is capped at $ 42.1 million for two years. That’s $21 million per, the max he is allowed to be paid due to the owners locking the players out and giving it to them up the collective bargaining agreement. Counsel rests her case. Nice to see the NBPA finally getting their shit together. This could end up being Chis Paul’s greatest legacy.

I love God. I love humanity. Let’s spread the real love in the global ‘hood. Got to get out here and go to work. ‘Til next time. Peace.