"I think if they want to get married, God bless them. Gay marriage is probably 1 percent of the population, so it's not like it's going to be an epidemic. Hey, trust me, I'm never going to kiss you and say, 'Chris, you're sexy.'"Is it just me, or do Chuck's words come off as slightly patronizing? I know that the Great Homo Epidemic is a secret fear that keeps heterosexual men awake at night, and I personally spend a minimum of two hours every day surfing the Web for nude pictures of Paris Hilton as a means of inoculating myself. But c'mon Charles, do you really need to qualify your support of gay marriage by assuring people you aren't going to catch an incurable case of gaybies? And I'd like to know where he got that "1 percent of the population" statistic. Maybe he'll explain it in his next book...
"Aw man, don't do it to me...NO, AW MAN...AAAHHHHHHHHH!!"A special thanks goes out to our good friend Reef for bringing this clip to our attention.
"Man, look how high we is. OOOOH, MAN...I can see my house over there!!"
"Aw man, stop playin'. We gonna go backwards!!"
5 Shots = An unacceptable failureMission Statement: 25+ shots
10 Shots = A slight underachievement
15 Shots = Generally sufficient
20 Shots = Strangely pleasing
25+ Shots = So close to perfect you'll probably thank God
"This is about you and me. This is about you and me changing the world. This is about you and me saying it's not about the commercials, the gimmicks, the dollar signs. This is about you and me showing the world that it can be done. Starbury is my life. This line was built on what I've been through. From Coney Island to Madison Square Garden. These are the shoes I wear on the court; these are the clothes I wear off it. This is what I believe in. I'm tired of people saying it can't be done. Change the world with me."Since Stephon is a selfish gunner with a well-earned reputation as a locker room cancer, it would be easy enough to cynically disregard these words. Just ask Larry Brown. But you've gotta admit, it sounds really good.
"Your comments should be directed to the idiot that directed/edited the video. This is the equivelent to any other blooper video. I really fail to see the point of your comments aside from using a well known figure to bring attention to your article. Who makes moore bloopers and sound dumber than Bush and you guys elected him as the leader of your nation,(Twice)."When I need my posts to carry weight, I'll keep all of this in mind. But even if I do decide to send a message to the people of the world, I probably won't take the advice of some anonymous dipshit who left a nonsense comment on my blog. And by the way: Trying to defend Jordan's grammatical ineptitude by saying George W. Bush is an idiot is like defending a pile of vomit by telling everyone that poop smells worse. Sure, it's technically true, but it's also completely retarded.
"For all the kids who want to be a better basketball player, I think you should improve your weaknesses to where they become strengths, and at the same time improve your strengths to where you don't have any weaknesses. So work on it well-roundedly, and try to become the best basketball player you can be. And once you get to that level, then you're an MVP in your own mind."That's the kind of lame, poorly worded advice you'd expect from a fortune cookie. A bad one. But instead of emerging from the bowels of a crisp cookie shell, it's ejaculating from the mouth of an NBA legend. Is Jordan really that stupid? I was puzzling over this last night, and then it hit me. This isn't the kind of laughable failure that comes solely from incompetence. This is a conscious and calculated attack against up and coming basketball players. It's kind of like how the "Birds and the Bees" talk scared you the hell away from sex until your parents had a chance to install bars over your bedroom window. See, Jordan knows the best way to ensure that there's never another Jordan is to sabotage NBA hopefuls at a young and impressionable age. Fill them with meaningless drivel about doing things "well-roundedly," and the only place they'll ever be an MVP is in their own mind. Let's face it, it's either brilliance or stupidity. Or, you know, maybe it's both.
"For all the kids who want to be a better basketball player in bed, I think you should improve your weaknesses to where they become strengths in bed, and at the same time improve your strengths to where you don't have any weaknesses in bed. So work on it well-roundedly, and try to become the best basketball player you can be in bed. And once you get to that level, then you're an MVP in your own mind in bed."See? That's, like, 826 percent better and I only added 10 words. They really need to consult us before they shoot these videos.
"To learn my teachings, I must first teach you how to learn."An official Basketbawful No-Prize goes to anyone who can tell me what movie these quotes come from. Now go out into the world, little grasshopper, and unleashify your inner successivations. But please, do it well-roundedly.
"He who questions training only trains himself at asking questions."
"When you care what is inside, what is inside cares for you."
"If you to do not learn to master your fear, your fear will become your master."
"Tracy McGrady is doing things we've never seen from anybody -- from any planet!"FUN-tastic Extra: Loyal reader* Henry Skinner recently sent us this screen capture from NBA Live 2005:
"Eric Piatkowski makes perhaps the greatest defensive play in Clipper history!"
"Patrick Ewing used to be better in every aspect of the game."
"John Stockton is one of the true marvels, not just of basketball, or in America, but in the history of Western Civilization!"
"This crucial game five brings to mind two great movies. The first is Gladiator, in which Maximus attempts to rally his troops to come together. They learn that the only way to win is to fight as one. The other is Traffic, in which we learn that the greatest battle of all is that which is fought within one's own mind."
"Tony Parker just made the worst pass in the history of Western Civilization."
"That was the worst execution of the fast break in the history of the Trail Blazer franchise."
"What a pathetic play from a pathetic human being." (About Larry Johnson.)
"Shaq makes everyone else in the league look like Michel Tafoya."
"I really don't understand the physics of jumping and how you increase that."Don't feel bad, Mike; I don't understand it either. Hell, I didn't even know it was possible to increase the physics of something. But despite his confessed lack of knowledge, Jordan nonetheless proceeds to spend almost a minute "instructing" us on a subject he just admitted to knowing nothing about.
"I guess if you exercise the muscle to that activity, somehow it's gonna improve."I...guess so. Michael then confused the hell out of me with one of the longest run-on senteces I've ever heard:
"How much it improves, no one can really dictate who's gonna be the greatest leaper of all time or when the next player's gonna be a great leaper, but those are the things that if you work on your jumping to some degree, it's gonna improve some."What? No, seriously. What??! Aw, forget it. Mike, just tell me this: will riding my bike and jumping around the house make me a better basketball player?
"Will it maximize your opportunities? No."Damn.
Wilt averaged 50 points per game over an entire season, had the 100 point game, as a score-first center, lead the league in assists per game, and one time had a double triple double (20+ pts, rebounds, and assists in a game). None of those stats seem remotely realistic in today's league.Well, no, you probably won't see numbers like that ever again. But that's mostly because the game itself was played vastly differently during Wilt's era. Most teams played an up-tempo, run-and-gun style that would make even the current-day Phoenix Suns feel a little ashamed of themselves. That's why many of the statistics of that era are somewhat skewed...higher scores, more rebounds, lower shooting percentages. The typical NBA game was characterized by relentless waves of fast breaks punctuated by guys shooting as soon as the ball was passed to them.
Chamberlain was clearly more statistically dominant individually than anyone who's played since I was born (and I've heard people say that Russell was supposed to be even more dominant but they didn't keep his stats properly or something like that, 10 blocks per game is the made up stat I've heard thrown around)...Russell, for the record, was dominant only on the defensive end. He averaged a mere 15 PPG for his career, and most of those came off of fast breaks and put backs. But did he really average 10 blocks per game, or close to it? I tend to think so, at least for a handful of seasons. Remember, Bill Russell was the pioneer of NBA defense. He was the first player to turn the blocked shot into a weapon. And it isn't that other players weren't able to go up and block shots before he came along. Most coaches of that era instructed their players to never leave their feet when an opponent shot the ball. Jumping up after a shot was considered a defensive mistake. Credit Russell for ignoring his college coach and going after balls anyway. He was a revolutionary.
...but I've always wondered what would happen if you threw Garnett back there in his place? What about Iverson instead of Cousey? How bout Lebron? I mean, people think that today's players are bigger, faster, stronger for a good reason, did I mention Lebron yet? Watching the old classic games it doesn't seem like anyone back then would have had a chance covering the athletic monsters of today, Garnett, Amare, Wade, etc, ect...Don't forget that there were some incredible athletes back then, too. Russell, who is Garnett's size, had a phenomenal vertical leap. As did Oscar Robertson. Wilt had a standing high jump of over 40 inches and could dunk from the freethrow line. Name one NBA center, or even a forward, in today's game who could do that. There you go...there isn't one.
Kobe's 81 is much fresher in our memories than Wilt's 100, which isn't in any of our memories, but Kobe took 46 shots (many from outside) while Wilt averaged 40 shots a game over a whole season.Comparing the number of shots Kobe attempted in one game versus what Wilt averaged during his 50-points-per-game season isn't really fair. Instead, let's look at their shots per game for similar scoring seasons. Last year, Kobe took 2,173 shots on his way to averaging 35.4 PPG. That averages out to 27 SPG. In 1963-64, Wilt averaged 36.9 PPG. It took him 2298 shot to do it, which is roughly 28 SPG. So, statistically speaking, it took them roughly the same number of shots to achieve a similar scoring average (of course, Wilt shot better from the field, while Kobe shot better from the line and got extra points from three-pointers). All this really says is: to score a lot of points, you have to take a lot of shots. But I will say this: Wilt's 100 -point game was less of an anomoly than Kobe's 81-point game; after all, Wilt had four other games where he scored more than 70 points.
And regardless of whatever comparisons can be made between the two performances, Kobe did what he did against modern defense, granted it was the Raptors, but still, and Wilt did what he did as a 7-footer when the average height of a center in the league was 6'6" of so.Modern defense?? Look, it's no coincidence that Kobe had his 81-point game and highest scoring average in the very same season that the NBA adopted rules that were specifically designed to benefit perimeter players. The top ten scorers in the league were: Kobe, Allen Iverson, Lebron James, Gilbert Arenas, Dwayne Wade, Paul Pierce, Dirk Nowitzki, Carmelo Anthony, Michael Redd, and Ray Allen. You'll notice that list it made up almost entirely of big guards and small forwards who can shoot and penetrate. Even the lone "big man" -- Nowitzki -- plays more like a shooting guard. Once the league adopted a "hands off" defensive policy, these guys all had career scoring years.
Athleticism may be worthless without skill and heart, but skill is just as meaningless without athleticism. Bird and Magic accomplished what they did because of a) incredible talent b) great teams around them c) other innate characteristics like heart, desire, and leadership.One of the most consistent arguments against Bird and Magic is that they were on great teams, and that made them look better. And it's true...to a point. But look at it realistically. Kareem was already past his prime before Magic even joined the Lakers. Bird took a 29 win team and turned it into a 61 win team before Parish and McHale arrived on the scene. And it's not like McHale was an immediate All-Star. When the Celtics won the title in 1981, McHale played 20 minutes a game and averaged 10 points and 4 rebounds during the regular season, and those numbers fell to 10 minutes, 8 points, and 3 rebounds during the playoffs (and, in truth, McHale didn't really peak until 1985). That team mostly relied on guys like M.L. Carr, Cedric Maxwell, Chris Ford, and Rick Robey. Not exactly Hall of Fame talent. Yet if you go back and watch Game 7 of the 1981 Eastern Conference Finals against the 76ers (with uber-athletic Dr. J, Caldwell Jones, Bobby Jones, and Darryl Dawkins), all of those players got more minutes than McHale (who was a rookie) and Parish (who was in foul trouble).
Although both are decent size, neither one seems to have the overall speed, hops, and athleticism of today's stars.No, they don't. But then, they didn't have the overall speed, hops, and athleticism of yesterday's stars either. I mean, let's look at some of your examples. You named Iverson. Well, he's not particularly athletic (he rarely dunks). He has phenomenal speed, yes. But is he any faster than, say, Isiah Thomas was in the 80s? Absolutely not. Kevin Garnett is a monster, sure, but is he any more athletic than, say, Hakeem Olajuwon (then "Akeem") was? No way. And Hakeem had thirty pounds of muscle on the twig-like Garnett. And let me ask you this, would you take Iverson in his prime over Isiah in his prime? Or Garnett over Hakeem?
Whether it be due to more advanced conditioning techniques, steroids, or wider talent pool due to population increase and international popularity. I don't think that either Magic or Bird would be stars in the NBA today if you went back to '86 in a time machine and brought them back here as they were, replaced the booty shorts with the more masculine variety, and put them on a basketball court.This is just wrong. And besides...I really don't think that today's players are that much more athletic than players from the 80s. Let's just look at the 2006 All-Star team. Allen Iverson is fast, but not that athletic. Is Vince Carter really any more athletic than, say, Dominique Wilkins? Compare Ben Wallace to Robert Parish. Or Chris Bosh to Moses Malone. Chauncy Billups, Gilbert Arenas, and Richard Hamilton...are these guys leaping over tall buildings in a single bound. What about Steve Nash? Tony Parker is quick, sure, but he's not springing over anybody. Tim Duncan is Mr. Fundamental, but is he a leaper? He really isn't physically imposing either. Yao Ming? Come on. Is Pau Gasol physicall superior to Tom Chambers? Michael Jordan was in All-Star in 1986. As was Patrick Ewing. Really compare the 2006 All-Star team to the 1986 All-Star team. I think you'll be surprised.
Stronger and faster don't always = better (that's why Luke Ridnour got the call up for team USA) but if you're not big and strong you get flattened (that's why I’m not in the NBA).I've named guys on the 2006 All-Star team that aren't hulking bruisers. Ray Allen, Tracy McGrady, Paul Pierce, Allen Iverson, Chauncy Billups, Gilbert Arenas. They're all tough in their own rights, but big and strong?
To me Wilt seems like a mediocre, mechanical 7-footer in today's league at best, and every NBA team has 2 or 3 of those sitting at the end of their bench. I think one-on-one: Dwight would overpower him, Duncan would embarrass him with finesse, Dirk would run circles around him, and Shaq...well we can all picture that one. And think about it; Wilt was way, way, WAY, whoop-assly better than anyone else in the league at that time, whereas Duncan and Garnett are better than other big men but not nearly that much better.That sound you just heard was poor Wilt rolling over in his grave. I have to ask this, and I'm being serious, have you ever watched Wilt play? He was hardly mechanical. He didn't bull his way to the hoop like Shaq does. He didn't shy away from contact the way Duncan does. Did you know that Shaq was an All-American cross country runner in high school? No way would Nowitzki run circles around him. And, frankly, today's Shaq can't overpower 6'9" Ben Wallace, and Erick Dampier outplayed Shaq through most of the 2006 NBA Finals...do you really think he'd abuse Wilt?
There's the argument that back-in-the day players were discouraged from showboating and therefore only seemed less athletic, but when you watch the classic games the dribbling seems much less smooth, the passing less crisp, and the shooting form less developed. I can't imagine the old point guards even getting to half-court against today's defence the way they used to dribble. These things can't just be explained by tolerance for show boating or psychological tendency towards recency or whatever. The fundamentals back then just look way worse.I don't think it matters all that much what a player does -- be it shooting or dribbling -- as long as it's effective. Look at guys like Jamaal Wilkes and Bob McAdoo. They had the ugliest jump shots ever, but they both scored a lot of points while shooting well over 50 percent. They didn't care what their shots looked like as long as they went in. Players today, they're obviously concerned with looking cool. But there are very few big men who have the touch that Wilkes and McAdoo did. As for today's defense, well, guys aren't allowed to bump and handcheck anymore, so I doubt it would be much of a problem. And also, frankly, as someone who has guys like Cousy, Jerry West, Oscar Robertson, Earl "The Pearl" Monroe, et al. on tape, I can tell you that those guys were smooth.
I don't think that believing today's ballers would make the ballers of yesterday their biatches is a mutually exclusive notion to having an appreciation for the history of basketball, yet for some reason the debater that takes the side of the modern athlete always seems like he's the douchy guy with no appreciation for the classics, or the less refined basketball enthusiast, or something.I don't think you're a douche. I do, however, think you're overstating the athletic prowess of today's stars without much actual knowledge of the relative athleticism of yesterday's stars. I mean, Lebron, Garnett, and Shaq aside, how many of today's players are so ridiculously athletic that they're leaps and bounds over the guys I've mentioned? I was fortunate to grow up watching basketball in the 80s, and I have over a hundred DVDs filled with games (thanks ESPN Classic) featuring guys like Bird, Magic, Dr. J, Kareem, Wilt, Dominique, Clyde, and countless others. Being able to juxtapose these players directly helps me say, with a fair level of certainty, that the gulf separating the physical abilities of the generations is not nearly as wide as people assume. Hence the post about Chronological Snobbery.