Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Celtics This Week

1998 Myspace Mood of the Week: Loves It! - Like when there’s a sale at Banana and they totally have that cute top in my size, or when the new Beyonce song comes on Jam’N. - The only place for Myspace icons, Orkut avatars, and profile codes

The Celtics are now riding a nine-game winning streak with no sign of stopping, smacking around the rest of the NBA like Ike used to beat Tina. The C’s went 4-0 in the last week with wins over Golden State, Philly, Charlotte and a primed Orlando squad that found themselves humbled in the Celtics’ presence. With the Lakers’ surprise loss last night, the C’s now boast the best winning percentage in the league, and are a clear seven games up in the Atlantic Division. With Indy (coming off an emotional win), Portland, Indy again and the not-Bullets coming up in the next week, there’s a strong chance the C’s could be 21-2 heading into next Friday’s epic battel with the Hornets. That said, the Pacers have already beaten the C’s once this year and beat the Lakers last night, so my jubilant mood could be altered as early as tonight.

Kristen Bell MVP of the Week – No homo, but my favorite show of the last few months has been Veronica Mars, starring the boneriffic Kristen Bell. Now, I initially downloaded the entire series because of the sheer hotness of the lead character, but over time, I actually grew to really, really, really like the show. It was extremely well written, its characters developed, and Bell’s portrayal of a teenage P.I. was probably the best acting I’ve seen on a television show in years. Veronica Mars was an awesome show, Kristen Bell was its MVP, and I am sad that it only lasted three seasons. Insult my manhood as you will.

Anyways, this week’s MVP was Ray Allen, who has emerged from his early-season shooting slump to now making 53% of his threes over the last five games. I’ve long considered Allen the “third guy in the porno who has to sit there and hold the pizza box while the other two dudes get to double-stuff the actress,” but Allen has dropped the proverbial pizza box lately, and dove in for some stuffing of his own. Moreover, I learned from the Free Darko book that Allen is the league’s foremost collector of prized art (rivaled only by Grant Hill), and is maybe the league’s finest dresser. The Herald also noted that Allen is a big supporter of the Joslin Diabetes Center, one of the primary reasons I’m still alive today. These knowledge bombs made me appreciate more the player that I once referred to as the Sneering Corpse of Ray Allen. I may now start referring to him as Classy Assassin Ray Allen, or Barack Obama-in-waiting Ray Allen, I haven’t decided.

Ole Anderson LVP of the Week – Ole Anderson was one heckuva wrestler. He could wrestle against big guys or small guys, worked well as a single or in a tag team, and could talk with the best of them. Despite being really, really good though, he was the fourth-best of the original incarnation of the Four Horsemen, the greatest stable in all of professional wrestling. As great as Anderson was, he happened to be paired with Ric Flair, Arn Anderson and Tully Blanchard, three of the greatest wrestlers of all time. Ole was great, but when compared to his three great teammates, he just happened to be, by default, the least productive.

Such, this week, was the case with Leon Powe, an awesome player in his own right who just happened to be the least-great of all the Celtics’ players this week. Powe, due mostly to limited minutes, has averaged only 5.2 points and 2.4 rebounds over his last five games. I still love the man, but for now, he’s the least productive of the Celtics’ rotation.

Kevinn Pinkney “Who the Hell is That Guy” of the Week – One of my favorite pastimes is to go through the previous night’s box scores and see which players that I, an avowed basketball junkie, had never heard of and yet had appeared in an NBA game. This week’s winner is Warriors forward Rob Kurz, who I will admit I had never heard of before seeing him play three minutes Wednesday against the C’s. Kurz was undrafted coming out of Notre Dame last year, and served as the team captain and lone senior on last year’s Irish roster. He graduated with a degree in management consulting from Notre Dame’s school of business. His sister plays basketball at Villanova. has no bio page of Rob Kurz as of yet, so interpret that as you will.

Rumeal Robinson Memorial “Guy I Inexplicably Liked This Week” Award: Adam Morrison.

*deep breath*

I’ve been sitting on this rant for about five years now, so please prepare yourselves now for one of my more passionate diatribes ever. Adam Morrison was, and always will be, my favorite college basketball player ever. I own both his college and pro jerseys. If not for Pete Maravich, Adam Morrison would be my favorite basketball player in history. Now I’ll grant that 50% of that has to do with the fact that we are both Type 1 diabetics (more on that in a bit), but 50% of it had to do with the way he played the game. Adam Morrison’s greatest basketball skill is not his shooting skill or way to pop off a pick or his ability to find the open man or (definitely) not his defense. No, Adam Morrison’s greatest basketball attribute is his balls. Gargantuan, elephantine, monstrous balls.

(And yes, I know he cried against UCLA, but he cried because HE FUCKING CARED SO MUCH ABOUT WINNING GODDAMNIT. You fuckers should be lucky to have something you love so much as Morrison loves basketball)

It was these balls that caused him to lead his undermanned and less-talented teams to upset wins over bigger opponents. It was balls that caused him to demand the last shot in close games. It was his balls that, rather than give the rote one-word answers you hear from athletes, had him speaking out against the government publicly as a college student. It was his balls that caused his scoring average against BCS-conference teams to be higher than his average against WCC teams. It was his balls that, in high school, caused him to play through the state championship game with hypoglycemia so severe that it nearly caused him seizures. He scored 37 in that game by the way. With his balls.

And then he got drafted, third overall in the 2006 draft, which, looking back, may end up being one of the worst drafts of our lifetimes. He was picked up by a Charlotte team with no direction, and an absentee personnel director who spent more time gambling with Charles Barkley on the golf course than he did actually caring about his team. A team that has only won one third of their games since their inception. A team that already had the ultra-talented Gerald Wallace at small forward, and has seen three coaches in the last three years. It could be argued that the Bobcats are (and have been since starting up) the most directionless team in the NBA, and of all teams, that happened to be the team that Adam Morrison was drafted by. A similar fate, by the way, suffered by my other basketball hero, Pistol Pete Maravich, may he rest in peace.

And then there’s the diabetes thing. I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 14, one year after Morrison was. To this day, nearly every decision I make is permeated with the thought of “how will this affect my diabetes?” Type 1 diabetics are at a higher risk for heart problems, loss of limbs, stroke, depression, and basically every other ailment under the sun than non-diabetics. For most of my childhood, I had to give myself four shots per day to keep from going into a fucking coma, and I have to draw blood from my finger eight times per day to test my blood sugar. I am attached to an insulin pump 24 hours per day. Diabetes permeates nearly everything I do, every decision I make, and every long-and short term plan I formulate. Adam Morrison has to go through the exact same thing, except that, rather than a cushy desk job and a fun blog to write dick jokes, he has to handle the stresses of diabetes along with playing in the most competitive sports league on the planet, for its most backwards organization, and for a coach (Larry Brown) that is trying to ram a well-worn “system” down the throat of a team he’ll probably leave in a year, a system that does not suit Morrison’s game whatsoever. Oh, and the fact that he missed all of his second year with a blown out ACL probably doesn’t help matters either.

So is Morrison a shitty pro? Probably. He doesn’t play great defense, his shooting percentage is painfully low, and he doesn’t rebound well for his position. He’s also stuck on an awful team with an overrated coach that hates his game, which probably doesn’t help matters. Maybe he’d be the Gonzaga-era Morrison on a team and system more suited to his talents. But the fact that a Type 1 diabetic is even able to play in the NBA in the first place and had such a great college career , is downright fucking inspiring to someone like me. So next time you hear the word “bust” affixed to Morrison, remember what he has to go through on a daily basis, and how all-encompassing being a Type 1 diabetic truly is.

And if any of you dare insult Morrison in my presence, don’t be shocked if I knock your ass out with a blunt object in my hand. That object? My insulin pump. Never leave home without it.

Andrew Toney Memorial “Guy I Inexplicably Hated This Week” J.J. Redick. Take everything you just read above, apply the exact opposite (except the part about being a shitty pro), and that’s J.J. Redick. Fuck that guy.

1 comment:

Mathemagician said...

Rondo gets the triple-double with 10:30 to go in the 3rd quarter (early leader for next week's Meast, ahem, Kristen Bell MVP), and, despite getting lazy with an enormous third quarter lead, make it 10 wins in a row for the C's.

Sidestory: Gotta respect the diabeetus. My brother was diagnosed with the Type 1 at 18 months old. Being a professional athlete with that disease goes beyond what any superlatives can describe.

Also, JJ is Redickulous-ly drunk behind the wheel.