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Monday, October 01, 2012

NBA Monthly Thread, October 2012

I estimate only 10-12 Primates care about the NBA, but with our own thread, we won’t detract from what the site is really about: making fun of sportswriters and immigration reform.

Famous Original Joe C Posted: October 01, 2012 at 10:16 AM | 882 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   501. Manny Coon Posted: October 25, 2012 at 12:42 PM (#4283003)
Also, who was that monster impersonating Eric Bledsoe and how did he learn to play basketball so well?


That was the Bledsoe that had the 22 PER in the playoffs, apparently he can do it then preseason sometimes as well, but the big question is whether he consistently do it during the regular season and whether Del Negro will give him enough minutes on the court at the same time as Paul to find out.
   502. rr Posted: October 25, 2012 at 12:52 PM (#4283011)
Nash is one of my favorite players. I hate the Lakers. It would be a close tie, but Kobe pushes them into the against column.


Absent the italicized part, you have just summarized Simmons' next 12 Lakers columns, the next 40-50 Hardwood Paroxsym posts about the Lakers, several 2012-13 ESPN NBA staff Tweets, and several future Abbott posts.

Given this skill you have for neatly summarizing and predicting future behavior of people, feel free to email me off the board with your 2012 Election predictions. ;-
   503. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: October 25, 2012 at 01:02 PM (#4283026)
REMINDER: BBTF fantasy basketball league. 16 teams max (we're at 12 now); scoring based on Hollinger's Game Score:
(Points x 1.0) + (FGM x 0.4) + (FGA x -0.7) + ((FTA-FTM) x -0.4) + (OREB x 0.7) + (DREB x 0.3) + (STL x 1.0) + (AST x 0.7) + (BLK x 0.7) + (PF x -0.4) + (TO x -1.0)
League is #17814; PW is albright Draft is 9 p.m. EDT/6 p.m. PDT Sunday.
   504. rr Posted: October 25, 2012 at 01:15 PM (#4283042)
WRT predictions, I don't think I have much to offer to that part of the discussion that has not been already covered, but I will post some if I can make time to read the rest of BaskPro 12/13 prior to Opening Night.

Very much looking forward to this season, although I think the Lakers will be slow out of the gate.
   505. Tripon Posted: October 25, 2012 at 01:21 PM (#4283051)
500. Jimmy P Posted: October 25, 2012 at 11:35 AM (#4282939)


I have a league set up that needs to be filled. Draft is this Sat, 3 PM. Plenty of spots too. (Although I will probably have to change the time to Monday evening due to partying, uh I mean "visiting" SF this weekend.


I signed up. The league is set for the draft Monday, though.

I may not make the draft live, but I'll try and prerank


Yeah, I went ahead and changed the time to Monday. Cool that you signed up for it.
   506. Jimmy P Posted: October 25, 2012 at 01:33 PM (#4283072)
David Stern has announced his retirement for Feb 1, 2014.

As we've seen with Bud Selig, it's not real until it happens
   507. Moses Taylor World Re-Tour 2.0: Warszawa Posted: October 25, 2012 at 01:33 PM (#4283074)
Nash is one of my favorite players. I hate the Lakers. It would be a close tie, but Kobe pushes them into the against column.


Absent the italicized part, you have just summarized Simmons' next 12 Lakers columns, the next 40-50 Hardwood Paroxsym posts about the Lakers, several 2012-13 ESPN NBA staff Tweets, and several future Abbott posts.


And the next 150 robin posts....
   508. rr Posted: October 25, 2012 at 01:46 PM (#4283090)
And the next 150 robin posts....


Heh. I hope you'll be more chipper when Rose comes back. But the the Nash/Kobe stuff, well, saw that coming a long time ago, like I said. And it is just getting started. But, if you find my pointing it out bothersome, I will post about it less. But we will see plenty of it here and elsewhere.
   509. jmurph Posted: October 25, 2012 at 01:55 PM (#4283103)
But the the Nash/Kobe stuff, well, saw that coming a long time ago, like I said.


I can't imagine anyone liking Dwight Howard more than they like Kobe. Kobe has grown in my estimation simply because of his new teammate; he is the Derek Jeter to Howard's ARod (ignoring the actual talent and skill part of the analogy).
   510. rr Posted: October 25, 2012 at 02:01 PM (#4283107)
I can't imagine anyone liking Dwight Howard more than they like Kobe


I assume this is sarcasm, although from the rest of the post, I admit I am not sure what you are getting at.

Back when Nash came to LA, I noted that I had called Nash the "anti-Kobe" many times, and Maxwn pointed out that much of the the NBA blogosphere intelligentsia, as he called it, would be very verbose about their "cognitive dissonance" about Nash and Kobe being on the Lakers together, as they in fact already have--and the team hasn't even played a game yet.

But the Laker fanbase is worried about other things.
   511. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: October 25, 2012 at 02:06 PM (#4283110)
I assume this is sarcasm, although from the rest of the post, I admit I am not sure what you are getting at.

As much as people hate Kobe, Dwight has really increased his hateworthiness over the last 12 months so you throw a Laker uniform on top of that and it's hard to believe Kobe will be the most hated Laker. Similar to how once A-Rod came aboard, Jeter was hated less just because there was someone else on his team so perfectly (sports)hateworthy.
   512. The Chronicles of Reddick Posted: October 25, 2012 at 02:07 PM (#4283111)
There is news online that Stern will be stepping down on Feb 1 2014
   513. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: October 25, 2012 at 02:10 PM (#4283113)
As much as people hate Kobe, Dwight has really increased his hateworthiness over the last 12 months so you throw a Laker uniform on top of that and it's hard to believe Kobe will be the most hated Laker. Similar to how once A-Rod came aboard, Jeter was hated less just because there was someone else on his team so perfectly (sports)hateworthy.


Yeah, this. I used to be a big Dwight fan, now ... not so much (even before the trade). I think what pisses me off so much was that he just kept smiling/smirking through the whole thing like some kind of supervillain.
   514. Jimmy P Posted: October 25, 2012 at 02:32 PM (#4283128)
Delonte West has been suspended again
   515. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: October 25, 2012 at 02:44 PM (#4283147)
Delonte West has been suspended again.
I've always liked West, and hope he gets the help he needs.

Then again, West said in his Twitter rant this AM he's not off his meds, so there's a non-zero possibility he's a sane jerk.
   516. outl13r Posted: October 25, 2012 at 02:45 PM (#4283151)
Yeah, this. I used to be a big Dwight fan, now ... not so much (even before the trade). I think what pisses me off so much was that he just kept smiling/smirking through the whole thing like some kind of supervillain.


David Stern at the draft smiles/smirks like a super villain. Dwight smiled/smirked like a douche - especially when he came out and put his arm around SVG right after Dwight had asked to have SVG fired.
   517. Jimmy P Posted: October 25, 2012 at 02:52 PM (#4283159)
Then again, West said in his Twitter rant this AM he's not off his meds, so there's a non-zero possibility he's a sane jerk.


There's also a possibility that he's lying or his meds have stopped working.

Or, as you said, he's just an #######
   518. Fourth True Outcome Posted: October 25, 2012 at 02:55 PM (#4283162)
I think what pisses me off so much was that he just kept smiling/smirking through the whole thing like some kind of supervillain.


My take has been (with all the requisite caveats about the impossibility of knowing an athlete from their public persona) that Dwight has comported himself like nothing as much as a spoiled child. I don't just mean the reports of his hotel room in LA being stocked with candy, legos, and cartoon movies, though that is part of it, but also how throughout this whole saga he has seemed to act in a way that was both completely short-sighted and concerned only with himself at all turns. He's hardly the only athlete to act like that, but he's done a particularly good (bad) job of it, while publicly enjoying cartoons, candy, and fart jokes.
   519. andrewberg Posted: October 25, 2012 at 03:02 PM (#4283166)
JVG said- in the podcast that supposedly got SVG in trouble with the league- that his impression was that Dwight never grew up, much like FTO says in 518. He speculates about father figures and male authority, but the bottom line was that he felt that Dwight had experienced failure or hearing "no" so infrequently that he did not know how to deal with either. Since most of that podcast sounded like JVG paraphrasing what SVG had told him privately, it seems likely to me that it was the impression coming from his longtime coach.

Now, does that mean that SVG is right about Dwight, or even has a particularly keen eye for the human condition? I have no idea. Still, it is interesting to me in the sense that he is someone who has the sort of unfiltered, up close exposure to him that the rest of us lack.
   520. If on a winter's night a baserunner Posted: October 25, 2012 at 03:29 PM (#4283204)
"cognitive dissonance"
I'm not hardly too mature for such sentiments, though I try to at least be a little self-aware. But right as my basketball fandom was going from "idle fan" to "diehard", I went and lived in New Zealand, where you could only catch a game or two a week on ESPN Au. The Lakers, being the Lakers, were in more of them than any team without Andrew Bogut, and this Kobe's Year of the Gamewinner. Kobe is a lightning rod and I am a Celtics fan, but when your basketball viewing is dominated by a Bucks team ranked 23rd in ORtg on the one hand and this on the other, it's hard to actually be a hater; for all the big-picture ways I dislike this Lakers team, they're going to be amazing to watch, and Kobe's a huge part of that.

That said, I'm rooting for Kobe to break plays at the end of games for the same reason I'm rooting for Tebow to get subbed in at QB: chaos muppetry.
   521. smileyy Posted: October 25, 2012 at 04:08 PM (#4283259)
I thought I had signed up for the BBTF fantasy league, but I guess I hadn't. Time to fix that. What's the draft format?
   522. Moses Taylor World Re-Tour 2.0: Warszawa Posted: October 25, 2012 at 05:38 PM (#4283379)
I'm beyond disappointed in how this story is turning out.

Heh. I hope you'll be more chipper when Rose comes back.

It's a joke. We all have our windmills. I'm plenty chipper, I'm sticking with my Bulls as a 2 seed prediction even with everything else I read causing me to question myself.
   523. Mark S. is bored Posted: October 25, 2012 at 06:00 PM (#4283392)
There is news online that Stern will be stepping down on Feb 1 2014
ESPN has it.

The owners said they will begin negotiating with deputy commissioner Adam Silver to take over for Stern -- a decision they came to unanimously -- when those 15 months end. The plan is for Silver's appointment to be ratified at next April's board of governors meeting.
   524. kpelton Posted: October 25, 2012 at 06:04 PM (#4283395)
Having covered Delonte for half a season, I think it would be mistaken to consider the medication he takes for being bipolar some kind of magic wand. I word this carefully, but his reality is not always the same as everyone else's. I never got any sense that Delonte was a bad guy, but I can see how at times he has difficulty fitting into the larger team concept, which can be problematic for a coaching staff. So hopefully he and the Mavericks can get that figured out.
   525. jmurph Posted: October 25, 2012 at 06:38 PM (#4283414)
I assume this is sarcasm, although from the rest of the post, I admit I am not sure what you are getting at.


RR: I honestly meant it; NJ said it better in 511. People who can't enjoy watching the Lakers because of their Kobe-hatred are idiots. But Dwight-hatred, that is something I can get behind.
   526. smileyy Posted: October 25, 2012 at 06:47 PM (#4283420)
My understanding of bipolar disorder is that it is periods of indescribable euphoria (http://www.theonion.com/articles/manicdepressive-friend-a-blast-while-manic,1521/), periods of bleak depression, and a really dangerous unpredictable transition period. The problem with treating it is that the drugs wipe all 3 of those out, including that manic euphoric period that those with this disorder assume is "normal". I've heard that many people have a hard time sticking with the treatment, because they miss that unsustainable high.
   527. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: October 25, 2012 at 07:03 PM (#4283434)
My understanding of bipolar disorder is that it is periods of indescribable euphoria (http://www.theonion.com/articles/manicdepressive-friend-a-blast-while-manic,1521/), periods of bleak depression, and a really dangerous unpredictable transition period. The problem with treating it is that the drugs wipe all 3 of those out, including that manic euphoric period that those with this disorder assume is "normal". I've heard that many people have a hard time sticking with the treatment, because they miss that unsustainable high.


Unsustainable? Life is gonna be this great forever!!!!!!

(seriously, as a person with manic depression, this sounds right to me -- the hardest part is that the transition periods are unpredictable so it's not like in the downs it is just like, wait a week and things will be back to normal, could be a day, could be a month, could be 5 years -- it's like a 1 in 20 chance that you will snap back every day or something but if you don't do it one day that doesn't increase your chance for the next day. I tried drugs and not for me partly for the reason above but also for other reasons.)
   528. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 25, 2012 at 07:39 PM (#4283455)
Mavs picked up eddy curry on waivers - will look to deal/waive delonte
   529. smileyy Posted: October 25, 2012 at 08:25 PM (#4283511)
[527] Yeah, it would have been better to say "One of the reasons people can have a hard time sticking with treatment...."
   530. smileyy Posted: October 25, 2012 at 08:32 PM (#4283539)
[528] There's something amusing about picking up Eddy Curry after having Tyson Chandler pass through a couple of years ago. Kwame Brown awaits his chance.
   531. steagles Posted: October 25, 2012 at 08:48 PM (#4283582)
[528] There's something amusing about picking up Eddy Curry after having Tyson Chandler pass through a couple of years ago. Kwame Brown awaits his chance.
one of these things is not like the others...
   532. kpelton Posted: October 25, 2012 at 09:01 PM (#4283609)
Well, yeah, Kwame wasn't drafted by the Bulls.
   533. rr Posted: October 25, 2012 at 09:05 PM (#4283617)
Interesting points on West from Pelton. I hope West can work things out.

As to Howard, some of the feelings expressed are news to me as well.

"Cognitive dissonance" is a negative term, but I didn't really mean it as a putdown per se. I think it's quite understandable that many people:

a) Would really like to see Nash get a ring
b) Would really not like to see Kobe get another ring

As for me, I would settle for the Lakers simply winning a game.
   534. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: October 25, 2012 at 11:03 PM (#4283861)
In the last 5 minutes, Kevin Harlan has name checked John Hollinger, discussed the Bask Pro Nuggets projection, and highlighted Andre Igoudala's defense with a reference to opponents PER.

Eric Bledsoe is better than John Wall.
   535. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: October 25, 2012 at 11:52 PM (#4283931)
So Booey, are you getting excited about Kanter too?
   536. steagles Posted: October 26, 2012 at 12:13 AM (#4283937)
In the last 5 minutes, Kevin Harlan has name checked John Hollinger, discussed the Bask Pro Nuggets projection, and highlighted Andre Igoudala's defense with a reference to opponents PER.
you're forgetting that reggie miller called kevin pelton a "lab-geek-rat". well, he said that about basketball prospectus. i assume reggie miller has no idea who and/or what a "kevin pelton" is.


on a related note, i don't see denver as being very good. a lot of people seem to be calling the difference between nene and afflalo, and mcgee and iguodala a wash, but i think there's more of a difference than people realize. nene had a .57 TS% last year and afflalo was at .58, while mcgee was at .55 and iguodala was at .54. in addition, iguodala's usage % was at 17 while afflalo's was at 19, and mcgee's was at 21, while nene's was at 23.

and w/r/t defense, while nene isn't a very good defender, javale mcgee isn't a very smart defender. and while iguodala is an excellent defender, aaron afflalo was pretty decent there, too. there's some potential for improvement, but it's not as if these substitutions put denver in the top 10 on that end of the floor; they're still gonna be pretty awful.


and in addition, they've also lost/jettisoned al harrington. there were 7 players on last year's nuggets roster that averaged 10+ PPG. of those, 3 -- harrington, afflalo, and nene -- are now gone, and since javale mcgee was one of the other 7, the only player they've really added to replace that lost offensive production is iguodala, and while i'm still a fan of his, he's not exactly the most prolific scorer.
   537. JJ1986 Posted: October 26, 2012 at 12:37 AM (#4283948)
They've also basically added Wilson Chandler who gave them nothing last year and who should take Harrington's minutes.
   538. andrewberg Posted: October 26, 2012 at 12:21 PM (#4284268)
Responses to STEAGLES Nuggets points
-Iguodala will likely be more efficient in his role in Denver than he was in the ill-fitting long 2 Philly offense.
-Gallinari is likely to contribute more than he did last year.
-Faried played more later in the season. Having him in a major role all year will help.
-They have 3 separate centers with non-zero breakout chances. If one hits, they're much better.
-Lawson may not have hit his ceiling.
   539. Jimmy P Posted: October 26, 2012 at 01:11 PM (#4284339)
-Faried played more later in the season. Having him in a major role all year will help.


Double edged sword. He looked (and from what Twitter says, still does) totally lost on defense.
   540. JJ1986 Posted: October 26, 2012 at 01:30 PM (#4284356)
Andrew,

Are you going to start the head-to-head league?
   541. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: October 26, 2012 at 01:34 PM (#4284361)
The 3 biggest things for the Nuggets are (no particular order): 1.) Will one of their Cs break out? 2.) Can Gallo find his 3 point stroke? 3.) Can Faried play defense? If 2 of those 3 things work out in their favor, they're going to be, at worst, a 3 seed. I haven't watched them too much, but number 3 looked like a "HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH, no. Goodness, no." last night.
   542. Jimmy P Posted: October 26, 2012 at 01:41 PM (#4284368)
Andrew,

Are you going to start the head-to-head league?


Tripon posted one yesterday that's pretty much the same rules and needs owners. Not to discourage the other one.
   543. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 26, 2012 at 01:42 PM (#4284369)
I was going to mention both andrew and Jimmy's points. (Though I'm a little worried that Iggy has struggling thus far.)

I think Nene is pretty good defensively and Afflalo is really overrated.
   544. andrewberg Posted: October 26, 2012 at 01:56 PM (#4284386)
Tripon posted one yesterday that's pretty much the same rules and needs owners. Not to discourage the other one.


I'd recommend going for that one. I am co-managing in another league and it still seems like 5 or fewer people are really committed to the thread league, so I'm going to pass this year. Hopefully we can drum up more interest for next year. With the basketball smarts on this board, I think we could have a really fun league.
   545. Booey Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:00 PM (#4284392)
So Booey, are you getting excited about Kanter too?


Oh absolutely. He's right up there with Favors and Hayward as the players I'm most interested in seeing how they've developed this offseason. Kanter was already a very good rebounder in limited minutes last year, but I'm hopeful that he's done some work on his jump shot and post game as well and will be a reliable scoring option off the bench too. I'm predicting some double doubles in games where Al's just not feeling it and Enes gets some good minutes.
   546. JJ1986 Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:05 PM (#4284396)
I'd recommend going for that one. I am co-managing in another league and it still seems like 5 or fewer people are really committed to the thread league, so I'm going to pass this year. Hopefully we can drum up more interest for next year. With the basketball smarts on this board, I think we could have a really fun league.


Sounds good. Tripon's league looks good.
   547. steagles Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:11 PM (#4284401)
-Iguodala will likely be more efficient in his role in Denver than he was in the ill-fitting long 2 Philly offense.
-Gallinari is likely to contribute more than he did last year.
-Faried played more later in the season. Having him in a major role all year will help.
-They have 3 separate centers with non-zero breakout chances. If one hits, they're much better.
-Lawson may not have hit his ceiling.


you can say the same thing about basically every team, in every sport, coming out of training camp. dorell wright will be more efficient. evan turner should contribute more. lavoy allen had a bigger role later in the season. they have multiple players with non-zero breakout chances (turner, holiday, hawes, young, allen). and andrew bynum may not have hit his ceiling.

   548. Jimmy P Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4284407)
Wojnarski wrote a column that really hammers Stern. I won't rehash, but I hate the argument that Stern rode Jordan, Magic, and Bird. Implying that anyone could've been commissioner and made the NBA what it is. I disagree. While Stern had great players and outside forces, he capitalized on it and, more importantly, didn't ruin it. To see how important that second part is, look at Gary Bettman. He's had two opportunities to really expand and capitalize for the NHL. One time he did a pretty decent job, and the second time he has totally ruined.
   549. andrewberg Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4284408)
you can say the same thing about basically every team, in every sport, coming out of training camp. dorell wright will be more efficient. evan turner should contribute more. lavoy allen had a bigger role later in the season. they have multiple players with non-zero breakout chances (turner, holiday, hawes, young, allen). and andrew bynum may not have hit his ceiling.


You can say it, but it doesn't make any of those things true.

GS has an offense built around three point shooting. Philly has designed its offense to avoid that. Maybe it will change this year, but there is not hard data on that like there is on Denver's fast break offense and Iggy's mediocre midrange shooting.

Gallinari played below a previously established level of performance last year and battled injuries. That is different than expecting Turner to play better than he has ever played because the team wants him to.

Lavoy Allen played more partially because Hawes (who was above his head by all rational evidence) got hurt. Faried was not replacing someone playing unsustainably well.

The reasons for optimism for Denver's centers are based in performance- McGee's improvement after the trade, Mozgov's play in the Olympics, Koufos' crazy rebounding- while none of the guys you listed did anything that would make their ability could exceed their prior performance. I like Holiday, Young, and Allen quite a bit for what they are, but I did not see anything in their games or the team's changes to make me think they are going to be different players.

Andrew Bynum, same as it ever was.
   550. Booey Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:24 PM (#4284411)
I'm pretty much with you on Denver, STEAGLES. I've long suspected that people here and especially elsewhere have been overrating them. The "expert" projections posted a few pages ago that have them at 58 or 59 wins and ahead of teams like the Lakers and Thunder are completely whackadoodle, IMO. I see them somewhere in the 45-50 (at the absolute highest) range and a 4-6 seed. As a young team with several good players but no truly great ones, I see the Nuggs as being just a slightly better version of the Jazz.
   551. andrewberg Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:27 PM (#4284412)
Looking back at page 2, I had them at 49 and Philly at 45. Not a huge difference, but I guess it has more to do with whether they are getting better, worse or staying the same.
   552. steagles Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:32 PM (#4284416)
Wojnarski wrote a column that really hammers Stern. I won't rehash, but I hate the argument that Stern rode Jordan, Magic, and Bird. Implying that anyone could've been commissioner and made the NBA what it is. I disagree. While Stern had great players and outside forces, he capitalized on it and, more importantly, didn't ruin it. To see how important that second part is, look at Gary Bettman. He's had two opportunities to really expand and capitalize for the NHL. One time he did a pretty decent job, and the second time he has totally ruined.
in the last 25 years, MLB has boomed. the NFL has boomed. the NBA has boomed.

and the NHL is a ####### black hole collapsing upon itself.
You can say it, but it doesn't make any of those things true.
there's always cause for optimism. well, except if your team is owned by michael jordan.
   553. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:53 PM (#4284428)
I think having Denver ahead of LAL in the regular season is reasonable.
   554. Moses Taylor World Re-Tour 2.0: Warszawa Posted: October 26, 2012 at 02:57 PM (#4284430)
you can say the same thing about basically every team, in every sport, coming out of training camp. dorell wright will be more efficient. evan turner should contribute more. lavoy allen had a bigger role later in the season. they have multiple players with non-zero breakout chances (turner, holiday, hawes, young, allen). and andrew bynum may not have hit his ceiling.

You literally have said every single one of these things, multiple times, plus more. I'm surprised we haven't gotten a Mikki Moore prediction out of you (speaking of, is he going to make the team? I've always liked him more than he deserved).

The reason I like Denver (although not at much as some of the super high projections like Hollinger) is because I see a team that slightly underachieved last year partially due to fit and injuries. I think Iggy is such a perfect fit on that team, and I don't see the Afflalo loss as significant. Also, they're going to be hella fun to watch (basically, the exact opposite of the Bulls).

I guess I just don't see a huge difference between NJ and Booey's posts on this page (541 and 550 respectively), but NJ likes the Nugs and Booey doesn't. I put them 4th in the West in my predictions, losing in the 2nd round.
   555. steagles Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:04 PM (#4284431)
You literally have said every single one of these things, multiple times, plus more.
yeah, i know. i'm not dismissing the possibility of those things happening for denver, i'm just saying that you can say the same thing about any team, in any sport, at this time of the season.
   556. JJ1986 Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:13 PM (#4284437)
i'm just saying that you can say the same thing about any team, in any sport, at this time of the season


How the Bobcats could be good this year:

-Michael Kidd Gilchrist posts the best wing debut anyone has made since Brandon Roy.
-Bismack Biyombo develops an offensive game
-BJ Mullens has a Ryan-Anderson-2011-12 type season
-Kemba Walker becomes John Wall at the least
-Ben Gordon is revived after getting out of the toxic atmosphere of Detroit and posts his best season since he was in Chicago
-The Hawks, Knicks, Nets, Bucks, Raptors, Wizards and Pistons all implode
   557. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:18 PM (#4284441)
i'm just saying that you can say the same thing about any team, in any sport, at this time of the season

There is a difference between saying, for example, Gallinari is likely to contribute more this season than he did last year because he got hurt and came back early and his performance sucked while doing so and...Gallinari is likely to contribute more this season because he's going to suddenly become prime Dirk and develop the type of mid-range game he's shown no evidence of having to this point of his career. Your examples tend to fall closer to the latter.
   558. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:23 PM (#4284443)
Agreed, NJ.
(On Galinari, I'm optimistic that he's going to get his long range game back - which Denver needs pretty badly.)
   559. steagles Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:31 PM (#4284451)
How the Bobcats could be good this year:

-Michael Kidd Gilchrist posts the best wing debut anyone has made since Brandon Roy.
-Bismack Biyombo develops an offensive game
-BJ Mullens has a Ryan-Anderson-2011-12 type season
-Kemba Walker becomes John Wall at the least
-Ben Gordon is revived after getting out of the toxic atmosphere of Detroit and posts his best season since he was in Chicago
-The Hawks, Knicks, Nets, Bucks, Raptors, Wizards and Pistons all implode
from post 552:
there's always cause for optimism. well, except if your team is owned by michael jordan.

There is a difference between saying, for example, Gallinari is likely to contribute more this season than he did last year because he got hurt and came back early and his performance sucked while doing so and...Gallinari is likely to contribute more this season because he's going to suddenly become prime Dirk and develop the type of mid-range game he's shown no evidence of having to this point of his career. Your examples tend to fall closer to the latter.
we are living in a world where the baltimore orioles and oakland A's are playoff teams, but the boston redsox, tampa bay rays, and los angeles angels are not.

there's a whole lot more uncertainty here than most people realize.
   560. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:37 PM (#4284454)
there's a whole lot more uncertainty here than most people realize.

The issue isn't uncertainty - it's rational expectations.
   561. steagles Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:37 PM (#4284455)
I'm surprised we haven't gotten a Mikki Moore prediction out of you (speaking of, is he going to make the team? I've always liked him more than he deserved).
oh, and w/r/t this, well, andrew bynum and kwame brown are both banged up right now, and moore is still 6th on the depth chart, behind hawes, allen, young, moultrie, and wright. so, yeah, he's not likely to make an impact.
   562. Jimmy P Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:40 PM (#4284456)
The reason I like Denver (although not at much as some of the super high projections like Hollinger)

I think they're going to have a really awesome regular season. 50 wins, and probably a few more. I just don't see them getting out of the second round of the playoffs. Their personnel and style is perfectly built for the regular season.
   563. steagles Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:42 PM (#4284459)
The issue isn't uncertainty - it's rational expectations.
sports are not rational -- i'm kind of the poster child for that.

and what i'm talking about here is not expectations, so much as possibilities. when you buy a lottery ticket, you don't expect to win, but you dream on the possibilities of it. sports are very much the same thing.
   564. Booey Posted: October 26, 2012 at 03:51 PM (#4284467)
I think having Denver ahead of LAL in the regular season is reasonable.


I'd be pretty surprised if this happened. Top heavy teams with a few great players and not much else generally do better than all around teams filled with very good but no great players. Regardless of the makeup of the rest of their rosters, the difference between four superstars (even old ones) and none is huge and will be tough for Denver to overcome, IMO.
   565. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:04 PM (#4284474)
I think Mr. Moore is washed up myself, as a former fan of his.

***

sports are not rational -- i'm kind of the poster child for that.

and what i'm talking about here is not expectations, so much as possibilities. when you buy a lottery ticket, you don't expect to win, but you dream on the possibilities of it. sports are very much the same thing.


And all of that is fine - I'm glad you post here. All I'm (and others are) saying is that there's a difference in the likelihood and reasonableness of these possibilities - these aren't equally likely tickets and shouldn't be treated as such.

***

Booey, Jimmy describes my Nuggets feelings to a T - and the Lakers are the oldest team in the league with one of the worst benches. If I'm running the team, I'm trying to win the war, not the regular season battles (mind you, I'm not sure that that's Mike Brown's style).

I see Denver as like Indiana / Philly last year...
   566. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:05 PM (#4284475)
I'd be pretty surprised if this happened. Top heavy teams with a few great players and not much else generally do better than all around teams filled with very good but no great players. Regardless of the makeup of the rest of their rosters, the difference between four superstars (even old ones) and none is huge and will be tough for Denver to overcome, IMO

Too lazy to look it up, but does anyone have Denver's W% since the Melo trade? I'm thinking that projected to 82 games it would be comfortably 50+.
   567. Booey Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:13 PM (#4284480)
Booey, Jimmy describes my Nuggets feelings to a T - and the Lakers are the oldest team in the league with one of the worst benches. If I'm running the team, I'm trying to win the war, not the regular season battles (mind you, I'm not sure that that's Mike Brown's style).


Eh. I'm just not seeing Denver anywhere close to LAL in the regular season or the playoffs. But feel free to gloat next spring if I turn out to be horribly wrong. I won't be offended (in fact, I'd be happy to be wrong about how good I expect the Lakers to be). :-)

I see Denver as like Indiana / Philly last year...


Me too. And in the west, I think both those teams lose in the first round. Didn't Philly have an identical record to the Jazz last year? The difference between coming one win away from the conference Finals and getting swept in the first round was almost entirely a matter of conference strength and the Bulls injuries, IMO.
   568. JJ1986 Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:13 PM (#4284481)
Too lazy to look it up, but does anyone have Denver's W% since the Melo trade? I'm thinking that projected to 82 games it would be comfortably 50+.


I get 50.5 wins and 31.5 losses.
   569. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:14 PM (#4284483)
I have 56-33 (prorated: 51.6 wins).
   570. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:20 PM (#4284489)
Utah actually finished a game ahead of Philly - I forgot how far they fell off.
I was thinking more like a slightly upscale Indy (prorated 52 win season). Indiana lacks stars, but has a solid lineup, weak bench. Denver has a better bench - the big issues I have with them are: - will they hit threes + what McGee will showup?
   571. Booey Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:22 PM (#4284491)
Too lazy to look it up, but does anyone have Denver's W% since the Melo trade? I'm thinking that projected to 82 games it would be comfortably 50+.


They were 38-28 last year, which is a pace for 47 wins. They were better in 2011 post-Melo, but I'm not sure why that span should be given equal weight to last season. I suspect that was more of a peak than an established ability level.
   572. outl13r Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:24 PM (#4284493)
the difference between four superstars (even old ones) and none is huge and will be tough for Denver to overcome.


This got me thinking: Who would you rather have this year: Ty Lawson or Steve Nash?

I'm taking Lawson. I still expect Nash to be very good - PER & Roland Rating from last year both give the edge to Nash on performance. But, I think Lawson will improve enough to make up the difference. Nash's age has to catch up with him at some point, right?
   573. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:29 PM (#4284495)
Okay - but they were also a little unlucky last year + it is (imo) more likely that they have improved than gotten worse since then. 50-55 wins seems like a reasonable expectation.

Our bigger difference, I think, is in how we forecast LA. Incidentally - and I know that I've said the preseason results mean very little - it is interesting that the Lakers are 0-fer. Only one winless in the preseason team in the last several years has gone on to make the playoffs, a Mike Brown coached Cavs squad (obviously, I think the Lakers will make it).
   574. andrewberg Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:40 PM (#4284506)
Okay - but they were also a little unlucky last year + it is (imo) more likely that they have improved than gotten worse since then. 50-55 wins seems like a reasonable expectation.


I a going ever so slightly lower at 49 because I think some of those injury issues are fairly probable to either have a lasting impact or come back up again. Perfectly healthy, I would put them in the low to mid 50s.
   575. Booey Posted: October 26, 2012 at 04:47 PM (#4284512)
This got me thinking: Who would you rather have this year: Ty Lawson or Steve Nash?


I'd still probably take Nash for this season. Probably Lawson for every year beyond this one.

Incidentally - and I know that I've said the preseason results mean very little - it is interesting that the Lakers are 0-fer.

Well, two of those losses happened because they were unfortunate enough to run into the unstoppable, soon to be 82-win juggernaut that is the 2012-2013 Utah Jazz. :-)

Seriously though, I didn't see any of the Lakers other games this preseason, but Howard didn't play in either of the Jazz games, and Gasol didn't play in the 2nd one either (and Nash only played 12 minutes). Once their stars start playing big minutes - thus giving their bench many fewer opportunities to screw things up - I suspect the Lakers will be a very tough team to beat.
   576. Fourth True Outcome Posted: October 26, 2012 at 06:41 PM (#4284608)
According to reports, the Blazers will be waiving Adam Morrison. The dream is dead, folks.
   577. rr Posted: October 26, 2012 at 07:14 PM (#4284650)
Incidentally - and I know that I've said the preseason results mean very little - it is interesting that the Lakers are 0-fer.


As you might guess, wide variation in reactions to this among fans. My take is I am not really worried, but I don't think it's totally meaningless, either. Preseason is different, but it's still basketball, and the issues:

age/health
depth
Brown

Do appear as if they will, in fact, be issues. I will be paying a bit more attention to the first two games (at home against Dallas, a "home" game against the Clippers) than I normally do for these reasons. Regular season or no, I expect that the team will want to win these games.

As to Denver, I have talked about them already. I think most statheads are probably a little too bullish on them, but given their personnel and the HCA they normally have, they are certainly capable of having a very good record.

That said, I think DK, like Hollinger, may be selling the Lakers a little short in spite of the repeated disclaimers. In simple terms, they have Howard and Nash now. Last year they didn't. That will presumably override a lot of other problems.
   578. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 26, 2012 at 07:26 PM (#4284657)
Is it that I'm:
- selling the Lakers short?
- selling their bench short?
- or overestimating how much energy they'll conserve in the regular season?
All three are possible, but I want to be clear that I definitely think the Lakers are super talented (duh) and staffed by some competitive guys. Plus, they should have a better roster in two months than they do now. In no way would I be surprised if they won the title + I bet I'll pick them to win the Pacific.

Is Morrison going to retire now? He'd hinted that he might.

Lawson/Nash: Good question! I'm not sure and will hedge - I think Lawson will "produce more value" during the regular season and that Nash's highs will be more impressive.
   579. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 26, 2012 at 08:06 PM (#4284671)
Wait ... so that's what Simmons looks and sounds like?

Wow, that's downright brutal. How could ESPN ever have hired ... that?
   580. rr Posted: October 26, 2012 at 08:13 PM (#4284675)
- selling the Lakers short?
- selling their bench short?
- or overestimating how much energy they'll conserve in the regular season?


I think the Lakers have a lot of variance in that it is easy enough to picture the whole thing going wrong and Paul and Howard ending up together in Atlanta or Dallas, and it is easy enough to picture them beating Miami in 6 games in June, with Howard raining dunks on the Heat while Nash feeds him and cans 3s as Kobe works the midpost. Handicapping those possibilities is not easy, but I think any analysis of their chances should fully acknowledge both scenarios.

The overly optimistic/excessively entitled types in the fanbase have had a little cold water thrown in their faces with the zip-8 preseason. I hope Hollinger's drink is on the way, but we'll see.

As to the bench, FBG ran a good, if perhaps optimistic, piece on the bench. The Lakers don't have guys who can step into a breach, and given the age and health concerns around the starters, that may be an issue. OTOH, I think that Meeks, Hill, Jamison and even Blake each do a couple of specific things well enough that if used inteligently with the starters, they can contribute. For example, Jamison, as you correctly pointed out, has seen his EFF numbers drop off quite a bit the last couple of years. At the same time, his MPG has stayed high and his USG has gone up--tough to do at that age (ask Kobe). But his 3p% has held right at his career numbers.

In preseason, Jamison has just looked like an old guy who can't do jack anymore. But ISTM that spotted 15-20 MPG with Nash and Howard out there with him, he could hit enough shots and serve as a floor spacer such that he could contribute in that specific role, and extraopolating, as such the bench will not kill the Lakers.

But in preseason, it has looked like I am wrong and the bench is too weak even with the four-man core--and the core is too old anyway. We are about to start finding out for real.
   581. rr Posted: October 26, 2012 at 08:14 PM (#4284677)
Simmons is in many ways a skilled and engaging writer; many of us have noted here, though, that he has neither the speaking voice nor the speaking cadence for TV and radio work.
   582. Booey Posted: October 26, 2012 at 08:18 PM (#4284678)
The 2013 Lakers actually remind me a lot of the 2004 Lakers. Both teams have 4 HOFers, 2 of which are really old with a lot of miles (Kobe/Nash, Malone/Payton), another that's just slightly past his prime if at all (Gasol, Shaq), and the last is a in-his-prime young stud that's amongst the very best in the game (Howard, Kobe). After a disappointing (for them) 50 win season that ended in the 2nd round the previous year, the 2004 Lakers improved by 6 wins when they picked up Malone and Payton and made it back to the finals again. That's pretty much what I see happening with this years team; they should jump 5-8 wins from last years 51 win pace and should make it to the WCF at the very least.

People seem to forget that Howard is probably the 3rd best player in the league behind LeBron and Durant. Most players of that caliber can lead their teams to 50 wins even without much of a supporting cast. Hell, Dwight had back to back 59 win seasons in Orlando with a group of teammates much worse than Kobe, Nash, and Gasol.
   583. Booey Posted: October 26, 2012 at 08:35 PM (#4284688)
To add to my 582, I see the 2004/2013 Laker team comparison going something like this:

Centers:
2004 Shaq = 2013 Howard

PF's:
2004 Malone < 2013 Gasol

PG's:
2004 Payton < 2013 Nash

Kobe:
2004 Kobe > 2013 Kobe


The bench was probably better on the 2004 team, but I don't remember it being anything special either. Also the current team might have better...um, team chemistry, we'll call it.

If the current team falls well short of the 2004 squad, I'm guessing it'll most likely be for the following reason:

Coaching:
Phil Jackson >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Mike Brown
   584. rr Posted: October 26, 2012 at 09:48 PM (#4284718)
The 2004 Lakers had Fisher, Kareem Rush, Rick Fox, Slava Medvedenko, Brian Cook, Horace Grant, Bryon Russell, and Luke Walton as the bench guys. Devean George started at the 3.
   585. steagles Posted: October 27, 2012 at 03:27 AM (#4284798)
just saw this in my reader, from hickory high:
The Nick Anderson Award - This award goes to the player who missed the most free throws in a single game. Anderson was actually a decent free throw shooter. But his four missed free throw attempts in the 1995 Finals against Houston kind of stand out in my memory.

Every season that Dwight Howard plays in the NBA will end with him adding another tiny, golden Nick Anderson to his mantlepiece. Lock.
and holy ####### ####. there have been 126 games in the last 3 years where a player has attempted 10+ FTs and missed more than half of them. of those 126 games, 43 belong to dwight howard. thats...something.
   586. Booey Posted: October 27, 2012 at 12:03 PM (#4284897)
and holy ####### ####. there have been 126 games in the last 3 years where a player has attempted 10+ FTs and missed more than half of them. of those 126 games, 43 belong to dwight howard. thats...something.

The superman name and the teams he's played for aren't the only similarities between Howard and Shaq...

Didn't Shaq once set a record with an 0-12 night at the line, or something?
   587. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: October 27, 2012 at 03:58 PM (#4285058)
RT @TheNoLookPass Reggie Miller hates Ray Allen. RT @tomhaberstroh Of note: Ray Allen said he taught Norris Cole what plus-minus was last night.
   588. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: October 27, 2012 at 04:43 PM (#4285097)
Is anyone here a member of one of those websites that has old NBA games for viewing/download? I'd like to watch some Jason Williams/Chris Webber era Kings games and was wondering the best place to do it.
   589. smileyy Posted: October 27, 2012 at 04:46 PM (#4285102)
[587] has me a little curious of what use +/- would be to an individual player. Not that I don't think a player should know what it is but I'm not surprised that a player doesn't.
   590. smileyy Posted: October 27, 2012 at 04:49 PM (#4285107)
Sure, Simmons has to make it about himself and the Celtics somehow, but I do like this piece on acknowledgement of greatness:

For the first time in a long time, someone made the sport of basketball feel like a Little League game with one of Those Kids — you know, those oversize five-tool freaks who seem like they're 20 when they're really just 12. I will never forget sitting next to my father during Game 6 of the Celtics series, both of us getting shamed into silence because LeBron couldn't miss, waiting for him to sweat, waiting for him to tire, waiting for any sign that he was human. It just wasn't happening. The last time I felt that helpless during a sporting event, Jordan and Pippen were ripping through a pathetic Celtics team in the mid-'90s — they were playing at such a high level, we couldn't help showing our appreciation by cheering them when they finally came out. What else could you do? When were we going to see something like that again? Two guys covering the whole court? Two guys playing that beautifully together? What if we never saw that again? Didn't we have to acknowledge it? Didn't we have to let them know that we knew?


http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/8555451/lebron-quest-immortallity
   591. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: October 27, 2012 at 10:47 PM (#4285522)

Adrian Wojnarowski ?@WojYahooNBA
The Rockets send Kevin Martin, Jeremy Lamb and future draft considerations to the Thunder for Harden, sources tell Y! Sports.


Unless the Rockets gave up the Raptors pick as well, seems like a good deal for them.
   592. PJ Martinez Posted: October 27, 2012 at 11:06 PM (#4285567)
They gave up the Raptors pick according to Woj:
@WojYahooNBA Houston sends two 2013 first-round picks (from Dallas and Toronto) to Oklahoma CIty, source tells Y!
   593. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: October 27, 2012 at 11:07 PM (#4285568)
Toronto and Dallas picks, is the word: Harden, Aldrich, Cook, Hayward = K.Martin, Lamb, those 2 firsts (and a charlotte 2nd)

Houston has to waive some dudes quick like, if true. Already need to cut 3 for the deadline.

(So, I'm streaming New Pornographers videos as I do some work fooferall. After submitting that, it's recommending Jeremy Lamb's Draft Express interview along with the previous music stuff ... technology is creepy)
   594. andrewberg Posted: October 27, 2012 at 11:19 PM (#4285611)
My snap judgment is that I'd be mad if I was an OKC fan.
   595. andrewberg Posted: October 27, 2012 at 11:22 PM (#4285622)
Also, if any of Houston's young forwards pan out, they will be highly entertaining.
   596. JuanGone..except1game Posted: October 27, 2012 at 11:27 PM (#4285641)
The 2004 Lakers had Fisher, Kareem Rush, Rick Fox, Slava Medvedenko, Brian Cook, Horace Grant, Bryon Russell, and Luke Walton as the bench guys. Devean George started at the 3.


The hilarious thing was that Slava was probably our 5th best player that year. That team was the epitome of top heavy.

Toronto and Dallas picks, is the word: Harden, Aldrich, Cook, Hayward = K.Martin, Lamb, those 2 firsts


I really, really like Lamb but that trade probably had to be done by the Rockets. I'm a bit of Harden Truther but the Morey needs to get some results soon or he's probably out the door. This is good for the Lakers this year, but I think next year's OKC is going to be stacked especially if PJIII turns into anything.
   597. rr Posted: October 27, 2012 at 11:32 PM (#4285661)
My snap judgment is that I'd be mad if I was an OKC fan.


Yeah. It may work big-picture/long-term, but Harden is a tough guy to lose when you are as close as they are.
   598. steagles Posted: October 28, 2012 at 12:02 AM (#4285699)
Toronto and Dallas picks, is the word: Harden, Aldrich, Cook, Hayward = K.Martin, Lamb, those 2 firsts
My snap judgment is that I'd be mad if I was an OKC fan.
Yeah. It may work big-picture/long-term, but Harden is a tough guy to lose when you are as close as they are.
no. kevin martin gives you ~80% of what harden does, and offensively, he may actually give you more. and then the other ~20% of what harden gave you can fairly easily be duplicated by jeremy lamb.

scoring-wise, kevin martin can match harden. shooting-wise, kevin martin can match harden. defensively, lamb can match harden. and when it comes to facilitating/playmaking, they have eric maynor coming back from injury, and also reggie hamilton coming in as a rookie.
I think next year's OKC is going to be stacked especially if PJIII turns into anything.
tony dileo is pretty lucky that he wasn't the official GM at the draft, because if he was, he'd be on the hook for having passed on perry jones to take arnett moultrie. if those were the only two choices, i'd have taken moultrie too, but that could look really bad if moultrie can't get off the bench, and jones plays well for a contending team.
   599. andrewberg Posted: October 28, 2012 at 12:09 AM (#4285701)
Having three players who can cumulatively replicate most of Harden's value will be great when they start playing 7-on-5. Harden is the best player in the trade and will remain that for several years. It sucks to be on that end of a trade.
   600. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: October 28, 2012 at 12:12 AM (#4285703)
I don't think Harden is a max player, so I'm OK with this deal -prevents the Suns from doing something stupid by throwing a Brinks truck at the ASU guy.
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