Roundball Roundup: Sky Blu, Vulcan Grip, Durantula


Afraid of spiders? The Western Conference is.

What would make hockey better? More black people. It’s Roundup time.

I know what you’re thinking: how is Hilson going to fit Mitt Romney into his NBA talk this week? Well thanks for asking, Fictional Second Person.

Two big Utah-related streaks came crashing down in a heap of culture shock over the past few days and I, for one, am determined to find multiple parallels between them… if for nothing else, as an excuse to recount the following.

On Monday, the Atlanta Hawks beat the red-hot Jazz 121-112 for their first victory in Utah in 17 years. So Atlanta over Utah – we’re one streak down. Now here’s my in…

On Saturday, Utah-via-BYU’s finest Mitt Romney took his well-coifed head of hair and Reaganesque smile to the Conservative Political Action Conference (read: Star Trek Convention for Glenn Beck Fans) in D.C. only to get based in a straw poll by Texas congressman Ron Paul. Romney had won the poll three years straight – you could say he had a “Vulcan grip” on CPAC.

That’s streak two. Now stay with me because here’s where it gets weird. Besides great fried chicken and Dominique Wilkins, Atlanta is known primarily for two things – famous rappers and the Olympics.

Well funny thing: last week Romney, on a flight back from the Olympics, was allegedly attacked by an irate passenger who wouldn’t return his seat to its full, upright and locked position.

Turns out the assailant was none other than LMFAO rapper Sky Blu… You can’t make this stuff up, but it gets much better.

For his part, Sky Blu says, hell no. That’s not how it went down. He told TMZ that a belligerent Romney not only attacked him, but used – and I quote – “a Vulcan grip.”  

“I’m not your prey. I’m not a salmon going upstream. You’re not going to grip me up,” the rapper said of Romney’s turn as Dr. Spock. (Great freaking quote, Sky)

LMFAO: Not happy with the Right Wing

So you see, there was precedence for Monday’s game. And how about this: Romney was done in by Ron Paul; the Jazz were done in by subpar games from Ronnie Price and Paul Millsap.

All of this is to say, those who keep up on their celeb news should have seen the Hawks’ victory coming. Seems Atlanta’s been roundaboutly sticking it to Utah for a couple of weeks now.

A typically pointless side note: both Sky Blu – nephew of Motown legend Berry Gordy – and Mitt Romney – son of American Motors legend George Romney – were born in Detroit. Much like all you’ve read so far, this has nothing to do with anything, much less basketball. But hell of a story, right?

Let’s talk about The King.

After trying my damnedest to persuade Cavs GM Danny Ferry to sit tight at the trade deadline – and then summarily convincing myself that Jamison was the right move instead – Ferry’s team repaid my unabashed support of the ‘Tawn deal by coming up O-fer in consecutive games to Denver, Charlotte and Orlando before topping New Orleans on Tuesday.

Of course, LeBron had little to do with his team’s sucky play, posting a 33-10 and 8 boards per in the three losses (although James scored only 3 fourth quarter points in Orlando). But bottom line is, Cleveland, despite still having the best record in basketball at 44-14, is making me look like an idiot for putting my stamp of approval on their acquisition of a banged up 33-year-old.

Be this as it may, I’m sticking to my guns, and not because I lost a card game to Gilbert Arenas.

Jamison/West poster on sale at your local Sports Authority

Let me reiterate: Antawn Jamison will be just fine – he followed an 0 for 12 FG debut with 37 points on 16 of 28 shooting combined in his subsequent two contests. Plus, he won’t have to worry about his body breaking down on him, logging 38 min. a night for a hopeless Wizards club. In fact, now he’s got a healthy Leon Powe to spell him.

And I never thought I’d say this – mainly because he looks like he swallowed Gilbert Brown – but Shaq is actually rounding into shape (no pun intended). He’s notched back-to-back 20-point games on a Martin Gramatica-like 18 for 23 from the floor, and for the year, is averaging a 12-7 and 1 block in 23 minutes per. Not bad for a soon to be 38-year-old with tits.

The Zydrunas Ilguaskas hang up is another story. The Wizards buyout isn’t going as quickly as expected, and David Stern at one point seemed dead set on keeping him from returning to Cleveland even though he’s allowed these kind of prearrangements since the beginning of time.

When the Wiz do free Big Z, the Hawks, Mavs and Nuggets will be jostling for position like a rabid pack of Wal-Mart shoppers on Black Friday. Dallas has a nose lead given Ilguaskas’ history with GM Donnie Nelson on the Lithuanian national team… I know two things about the Lithuanians – they throw a hell of a discus and their homies stick together.

It’ll all work itself out. In the meantime, my advice to Skip Bayless: pop a Quaalude and get back to me in 30 days.

Hey, speaking of abused substances, now’s a good time to discuss the budding feud between head case Charles Barkely and head case/Heat forward Michael Beasley. The Round Mound recently referred to Beasley as the Tito to Dwyane Wade’s Michael Jackson.

No way, Chuck. Tito plays defense.

But seriously, there’s no way Pat Riley could’ve landed Amare Stoudemire for Tito Jackson. Jermaine maybe. Not Tito.

Barkley: The Unofficial Sixth Jackson

Barkley: The Unofficial Sixth Jackson

A quick Juice Hellmanns update before we go any further. The Juiced One has topped 22 points three times since Wednesday and is shooting 53 percent in his last four. More impressively, rumor is that Memphis almost dealt him for Monta “I’m 24 and a Scoring Machine” Ellis. That’s respect, holmes.

Moving on…

If there was any question as to who will win out in the Association’s collective bargaining dispute, Boston guard Marquis Daniels this week settled the debate once and for all: the players union has no chance in hell.

No. Chance. In hell.

Daniels recently paid out to forge a replica of his own head. Now I’m all for head-forging. Nothing about this strikes me as fiscally irresponsible… until I find that said head is made of three pounds of 14k gold and diamonds.

Let me be clear as bling: the players will fold first. They have to, because when you’re buying 1300-grams of bejeweled human likeness, you can’t afford a lockout.

Marquis Daniels will make $1.9 million this year. He has mouths to feed.

Lil John is jealous

On that apocalyptic note, it’s time for this week’s edition of Streaking: Everybody’s Doin’ It!

The “In Underwear for Charity Run” Streak: Toronto. The Canadian government came out Tuesday and basically said that it burned the $117 million it spent to support its Olympic athletes. You will get no argument from Sports Casualties. On the bright side, Canada gets to keep Chris Bosh for three more months. He’s averaging a man’s 29-11 on 56 percent shooting in February as his Raptors have gone 5-2 in that period and won 10 of 12 overall.

The “Still Partially Clothed, But A Little Tipsy and It’s Getting Chilly” Streak: Mad ups to Dallas for making the Streaking portion of our show. One can credit this promising development to Wizards GM Ernie Grunfeld who swapped Caron Butler and Brendan Haywood for Josh Howard in a don’t-give-a-s*** move that makes you wonder if Evan Bayh was involved. While Butler’s figuring out the two guard spot, Haywood’s already comfortable in his new role as Absolute Monster, as evidenced by Monday’s 18 point, 20 board outburst. Dallas is 4-1 since the trade and has pulled to within 1 ½ games of the second seed – this as ex-Mav Howard tore his ACL Monday and, unfortunately for Wiz fans, will now have ample time to smoke tree.

The “Birthday Suit But, Hey, It’s Dark Outside” Streak: Utah steals this spot despite the aforementioned loss to Atlanta primarily because Jerry Sloan’s group came from 25 down to top Portland on the road Sunday. Impressive. The Jazz are 17-3 since Jan. 9, and for what it’s worth, Deron Williams was the best player on the court during All-Star Sunday. Yeah, you’re right. Not worth much. But here’s something: Andrei Kirilenko has to be motivated by all the Ivan Drago talk around here. Now if he can just shake those back spasms…

The “Wild Wimbledon, Only Clothes Are These Painted Flags, ‘Lookout, Queen Mother!’” Streak: Kevin Durant. I’d say Durantula has Air Jordan in his sites, but really he’s looking like a mile ahead of him. Mike’s got the record for consecutive 25-point games – he reached 40 twice – but Durant is at 29 and counting. What excites Thunder fans, though, aside from this cool-as-a-cumber, freakishly gifted 21-year-old, is that OKC is 20-9 during KD’s scoring binge. The entire city of Seattle just collectively stepped up to the ledge, and not because of the depressing music.

As always, it’s been real. Here’s your buzzer beater.

– Robbie

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