I find it apropos that 68 years to the day that America was pearl-harbored at Pearl Harbor, I’m on the verge of blowing up my fantasy hoops roster. Has anyone in the country done worse with their first (Amar’e Stoudemire), second (Devin Harris) and fourth-round (Derrick Rose) picks than me?
It’s silly for me to complain about anything basketball related as Jeff’s entire roster is littered with players who have red dots next to their names, signifying either an injury of some sort or that their coffee is ready. The Greg Oden season-ender is his latest catastrophe.
It’s been a strange first quarter of the season. Nothing is as it seems. The Cavs, Celtics and Magic have all played uninspired basketball for the most part, yet all three are on pace for at least 60 wins. The Jazz win every night yet are 11-8 and the Mavericks have consistently been drubbed this season and are 14-7.
Possibly the biggest enigma thus far has been the play of the Washington Wizards. This team has talent, but is being led astray by a lack of defense and a lack of sanity from point guard Gilbert Arenas. Yesterday, they dropped a 98-94 stinkbomb to a Detroit team that started 47-year old Chucky Atkins at point guard, Jason Maxiell at power forward and long lost Jonas brother, Jonas Jerebko at small forward. If anyone ever held a “Name the Guy on the Quaker Oats Container” contest, I think Jonas Jerebko would be it.
The Washington contest was the only one that went down to the wire during yesterday’s five-game melange. LeBron, on the heels of telling the world of his close-knit friendship with Zydrunas Ilgauskas, has been mediocre of late and registered just 14 points and 10 assists in the Cavs 101-86 victory in Milwaukee. Has there ever been two more mismatched friends in the world of sports than LeBron and Z? Michael Vick and Arthur Blank perhaps? Brian Piccolo and Gale Sayers? I’ll go LeBron and big Z.
Yesterday’s Players of Note:
Brandon Jennings: A few days after saying that he will stop shooting the ball, the rookie converted 9-of-22 from the field and finished with 24 points and 4 assists in the Bucks loss. I wish I had that kind of willpower.
Carlos Delfino: Even with the return of Captain Luc Richard Mbah a Moute of the Starship Enterprise, Delfino started, played 31 minutes and totaled 11 points and 4 boards. I’m not saying to jump out of your skin to add him to your roster, but keep a watchful eye.
Courtney Lee: I think I dated a Courtney Lee once, but this Courtney is back from his groin injury and playing big minutes for the Nets. He only recorded 5 points in yesterday’s clunker against the Knicks, but he can be a nice source of decent across-the-board stats.
Larry Hughes: I know we’ve been down this road with Hughes (25, 4 and 4 yesterday) since the mid-80s, but as of now he is part of what looks to be a 7-8 man rotation for the Knicks. He is still chucking up threes, handing out assists and is perenially one of the league leaders in steals, so jump on him before he is either out of the rotation or handed the key to a different city.
Quentin Richardson: Don’t let last night’s 20-5-2 with 5 threes fool you. He is not a good offensive player. But bear in mind that he is receiving 35 minutes a night for the Heat and his only job on the offensive end is to hoist threes. Give him a try during the Heat’s next four-game week.
Donte’ Green: It’s just bizarre that Green’s minutes coincide with point guard Beno Udrih‘s. When Green is playing well (21 pts, 8-16 fg, 41 min. last night), Udrih doesn’t play much (24 min last night). Conversely, when Green struggles, Udrih runs the point for 30+ minutes. Based on his proclivity to drain threes and block shots, the former Syracuse chucker should not be on waiver wires.
Jason Richardson: Richardson owners are probably ready to commit Harry Carey based on his inconsistent season. Last night’s 10, 4 and 5 with no threes against the Lakers has been the norm of late rather than the exception, and with the amount of options on the roster, the inconsistency will not likely change any time soon.