Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Daily Dribbles: 4.11.12


Good morning, Dribblers. It's been awhile and I'm sorry. It's time to get back to form and get some news to you on a daily basis. Hence the name Daily Dribbles. Not Monthly Dribbles or Quarterly Dribbles. Nope, we are talking daily. And I don't think it could come at a better time, considering the playoffs are on the horizon and it's a bright horizon at that.

Of course we hit this midweek point with some drama. As most of you have seen already, Lamar Odom has be released from the Mavericks. Sort of. He has been released under the stipulation that they retain his rights this year after what appeared to be one of multiple altercations with Mavericks owner Mark Cuban. The Mavericks will put Odom on their inactive roster for the remainder of the season while Odom watches both of his former teams -- the Lakers and the Mavericks -- in the playoffs from the comfort of his own couch.

Of course there will be some jock-itch of an ass-hat out there who will write that Odom was a disgrace to Dallas and sports in general because his effort was lacking this season. Of course those dolts conveniently forget everything that has happened to Odom in the past year and that he was probably just a bit overwhelmed this year. Don't forget to keep his life in perspective people. Not everyone is Kobe Bryant and can shake off personal issues the way he can.

Odom's former teammate and childhood friend Metta World Peace had some suggestions for him.

"Maybe he can come back and be a ballboy, and then next year, come play," World Peace said with a grin on his face, according to ESPN.com. "That's what he should do. He'd be the first ballboy in the NBA that can play. Come back; get the towels and next year, play. Why not? He should be a scout. Lamar should be a scout."

You know who else is grinning? Me, after World Peace later told the media Odom should hike Mount Everest or become a boy scout. You may not like World Peace (yeah, I went there), but you have to admit, this was a funny jab. The Lakers locker room misses Odom, and it's obvious Odom misses the Lakers.

***
Next up, the 113-point game by Mohammad Akkari in the Lebanese Basketball Championships.

I know you are expecting to watch this clip to see some phenomenal basketball. You would be wrong. Instead, you are getting someone that looks like your run-of-the-mill, hot-wing-eating, beer-drinking, summer league player alongside some of the worst defense play the world over. No, really. There is a team of 8-year-olds somewhere playing better defense and getting hands in shooters' faces better than these guys. I'm pretty sure my 82-year-old Grandad could drop at least 30 against these guys, and I'm being nice ... to the defenders. I would still count Kobe's 81, Wilt Chamberlain's 100, David Robinson's 72, Lisa Leslie's 100 in high school and a few others along with my Pop-a-shot record as more legit.



***
Bryant will sit out April 11's game against the San Antonio Spurs with his inflamed shin. The injury has kept him out of the last two games: a loss to the Phoenix Suns April 8 and a win against the Hornets April 9.

This means a few things. First, the Lakers are happy with the three-seed going into the playoffs and are willing to rest their players if need be. Second, if the Lakers beat the Spurs tonight without Bryant, there will be a faction of Laker fans who think coach Mike Brown should not play him through the playoffs. Third, that faction of people will make me wonder why I ever defend that fanbase. I love you Laker fans, even though we are hands down the most irrational fanbase in basketball. There is not enough Xanex in the world.

***
I know we are all tired of Dwight Howard. I mean, really tired of him. But you better gear up for some more, because the man is in the Three Stooges movie launching this weekend. With the amount of crap that came out of his mouth this year, you would think he remained in character even after he stopped filming.

Nonetheless, Otis Smith seems to think Howard and Magic coach Stan Van Gundy can coexist from here on out. You want to know what I think? I think Smith will be looking for a job soon. I also think Howard will have plenty more to say over the next six months. I'm buying earplugs or just getting an iPod filled with Stephen A. Smith podcasts.

***
Ricky Rubio is already being asked when he will be back and if he thinks he will make camp.

"I don't know when I'm going to come back. The first thing that I want to make sure is when I come back, I'm 100 percent," the young Minnesota point guard said. "I don't want to put a date on it, because it depends on how my knee feels."

You may be asking yourself "Why are we asking this kid if he will be healed in time for the season when his knee is still swollen to the size of a grapefruit?" And you will keep asking because I don't have an answer. Mostly because I'm too busy looking into Rubio's beautiful eyes to care, and because it's insane that we even care if he thinks he will be back in time. He'll be back when he's back.

***
Rajon Rondo had 18 points and 15 assists April 10 on his way to his 18th-straight double-digit-assist performance, the best of his career and also in the last 20 years. Oh yeah, and he did that while kicking the crap out of the Miami Heat. I know, I know, we are past last year and hating on the Heat. But let's be honest, you don't want to move on and neither do I. So thank you, Boston. Sucks to be you, King James. Well, sort of. He still has more money than I'll make in my entire life.

***
With the playoffs on the way, you can't deny the Heat and the Thunder seem to be the obvious matchup when the Finals roll around. It's not the sexy pick, but do you see anyone stopping them? In the East, the only team that had a true chance was the Bulls, but they can't seem to get Derrick Rose healthy. Rose missed his 25th game of the season April 10.

In the West, there are four or five teams in the running, and yet none of them seem deep enough to stop the Thunder in a seven-game series, short of injury or suspension to a major player. For what it's worth, I'd love to see Durant and Co. win a title. But there are a lot of things I would like to see. Most of them involve Scarlett Johansson and a pogo stick, but that is a story for another time.

***
Besides Connecticut sophomore guard Jeremy Lamb declaring for the NBA draft today, that seems to be it boys and girls. I'll be back tomorrow with more news, and I promise to try and be better. Let's be honest, I'm rusty. Don't worry though, I'm watching Family Guy all day so I can learn how to recycle jokes in an interesting and original way. So until tomorrow, have a good one.


Birthdays for April 11
Player Name (playing years)
Flores, Luis 2004-
Fowlkes, Tremaine 2001-
Kelso, Ben 1973-1973
Levane, Andrew 1948-1952
Martin, Ronald 1961-1961
Park, Medford 1955-1959
Richardson, Micheal Ray 1978-1985
Sessions, Ramon 2007-
Stewart, Dennis 1970-1970
Sykes, Larry 1995-1995

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