This is part two in a two-part installment. Please click here to read Bryan Holt’s triumphant return to Sports Casualties glory. Or simply scroll down, lazy ass. No, I’m only kidding. Enjoy.
If I were one to take hard drugs, I’d probably liken the five days after Super Bowl Sunday to something like heroin withdrawal.
I go to get my fix only to find that the cupboard – or wherever it is that one keeps hard drugs – is empty, or worse, filled with Mel Kipers and mock drafts. No thanks.
I want more. I need more. And so I flip to Showtime hoping against hope that “Inside the NFL” runs on loop. No such luck. No such Sapp. I alternate between states of calm sadness and violent quivering, mumbling to myself all along, Six days until pitchers and catchers report, six days until pitchers and catchers report.
In weeks like these – weeks in which I watch with my own eyes Miami and USF transition to basketball schools, weeks in which I consider what’s off to a more lackluster start: season six of “Lost” or Juice Hellmanns 2010 – I can only say with humility and graciousness, “Thank you.”
Thank you, Stephon Marbury, for being in my life.
Feb. 7 more or less changed the way I look at the world. This is the day that the AP ran a story that revealed, among other things, that the Chinese Basketball Association team that Starbury plays for is named after a local grain alcohol.
Of course, such information paints the former New Yorker in a different light. We already know that he parlayed a forgettable 37-game run with the Celtics into a 6-week, all-expenses paid vacation to the Far East. And now we know – with absolute certainty – that he speaks Chinese.
It’s not every week that one witnesses “Rise of Secret Genius.” More evidence…
Per the AP story, Marbury has already shipped 50,000 pairs of his brand’s shoes to China, but said in the story that he has no idea how many have sold and that his marketing plan is “secret.”
This really speaks to Marbury’s entrepreneurial wisdom, because if you know one thing about marketing, it’s that keeping your product a secret is the way to go.
What’s more, he’s already got Shanxi Fenjiu (team/grain alcohol) coach Wu Qinglong eating out of his hand.
“People say this and that about him, but let me tell you, I had dinner with him last night and it was so simple – chicken fried rice. That’s it,” coach said of Marbury’s modest habits, adding, “He didn’t even want anything to drink, just bottled water.”
Qinglong continued, “Look, I’ve never seen an American tourist drink sterilized fluids in a city known for its rampant pollution. And it’s not like black people like chicken.”
Qinglong has yet to admit that he saw an old NYC streetball legend on TV, heard he was an undersized point guard with no hair, and promptly made a bid for Tiny Archibald.
Shanxi Fans: as well-behaved as a Knicks crowd
In other NBA news (because what else is there?), the Clippers fired head coach Mike “The Gangsta” Dunleavy on Feb. 4, opening up an interim position for Kim Hughes. I don’t know a lot about Hughes, but she sounds really hot.
Rockets forward Shane Battier is tickling fans and media alike with his questionable facial hair. The guys on “PTI” compared Battier’s growth to a porn ‘stache, but to Sports Casualties, the Ron Jeremy comparisons feel forced and passé.
I’d go with Columbian great Pablo Escobar – like Battier, a good distributor who shares the rock and only shoots when necessary.
News broke Thursday that Louisville head coach/ public fornicator Rick Pitino was considering a return to the NBA with, of all franchises, New Jersey.
Citing his vigorous recruiting efforts, Pitino seemed put off by the very suggestion of such a situation, saying, “I feel like that job is beneath me. I’m a college basketball coach. I do great things.”
When asked for his opinion on the 9 a.m. SportsCenter, ESPN’s Andy Katz vociferously reconciled the Nets bid for the 57 year-old, telling anchors of Pitino, “Everybody loves him – babies, dogs, ya know, hot girls, cougars. He just has unbelievable mass appeal.”
On Wednesday’s “Pardon The Interruption,” Minnesota forward Kevin Love spent Five Good Minutes with Wilbon and Kornheiser discussing the NBA’s one-and-done rule.
Love told the hosts that he wouldn’t trade his time at UCLA for anything, but would have tested the waters right out of high school had the opportunity been available.
Asked to speak of new Wolves assistant Bill Laimbeer, Love said, “I think the jury’s out on him. Most people have their opinions about him.” He added, “If I had stayed in school, maybe I’d be able to use ‘the jury’s out’ properly.”
In a similar story on the same day, NBA analyst Jalen Rose suggested on air that L.A. superstar Kobe Bryant should sit out the all-star game.
“Now it’s time to let the Dwight Howards of the world go out there and shine,” Rose said, though he failed to explain to viewers that Bryant was considering starting at center for the Eastern Conference.
Much like the ’92 Michigan Wolverines, Jalen Rose is my go-to guy.
On Tuesday, the Harlem Globetrotters played on the iced pond of Central Park for the first time in their 84-year history, lending credence to longtime team slogan, “The Globetrotters: more relevant to basketball than J.W. Stewart.”
Turning now to financial headlines, the 27-country European Union debated this week whether to bail out Greece, a move that could stabilize both the Union and its tanking currency, the Euro.
The Greek Aisle has yet to ask for support from the league, but is struggling with severe debt, a decline in potential visitors and an overall lack of both interest and revenue.
Again, we’re talking about Greece, not the Charlotte Bobcats.
NBA owners proposed a collective bargaining agreement this week that would drastically reduce player salaries. Startlingly, the plan calls for the restructuring of existing contracts to conform to the new rules.
This strikes me, for one, as both unfair and against the spirit of capitalism. I mean, can you imagine if we did this to our country’s bankers?
Potential for lockouts in both the NFL and NBA in 2011 has commissioner Roger Goodell contemplating his league’s viability, David Stern contemplating his potholed legacy and Alex Ovechkin contemplating DOLLA DOLLA BILLS Y’ALL!
Moving to the presidential sphere, First Lady Michelle Obama launched a childhood obesity campaign Tuesday in hopes of curbing a disease that affects one-third of American children and two-thirds of American adults.
American adult and SC favorite Rex Ryan enthusiastically voiced his approval for the initiative, releasing a statement the following morning that read, “We’re going for it! LET’S GO!”
On Tuesday, the omnipresent Ryan attended a Carolina Hurricanes game decked in the garb of his favorite team, the Philadelphia Flyers.
Upon receiving a ‘Canes jersey from Carolina cheer girls, Ryan experienced a wardrobe malfunction that blinded many an unsuspecting puck fan and came within three inches of involving the FCC.
Shield your eyes. No, really. Seriously… SHIELD YOUR EYES, DAMNIT!
In a move that perplexed many, the Washington Redskins this week interviewed Bill Romanowski for the team’s strength conditioning coach position. The move is hardly surprising, though, when you consider that owner Daniel Snyder recently hired Bernie Madoff as new ‘Skins accountant.
During a seven-day span of ESPN features that included a piece on Drew Brees that should get Dr. James Andrews added to the banned substances list, the most surprising segment arrived Wednesday when SportsCenter unveiled a running series in which Herm Edwards attempts – through advice – to turn mediocre teams into Super Bowl contenders.
To me, this seems like the most ironic programming decision since ABC stuck “The Forgotten” in the time slot after “Lost.”
In the wake of the Saints historic Sunday victory, news organizations reported that local New Orleans parishes had sent the Pope a Brees jersey in a play for divine intervention.
This comes after the Vatican returned boxes of Peyton Manning voodoo dolls.
And finally, as is accustomed for Super Bowl-winning players, Brees and his Saints took to the ticker-taped streets of Disney World Monday. Upon seeing an inanimate character dressed in Colts blue, the Saints QB mistakenly approached Donald Duck and said, “Good game coach.”
My time is running is out. I need a buzzer-beater. You’ve been great.