Not 1…Not 2….But 3

the big 3

They say the best things in life comes in three’s whether it’s the last series of Fab’s mixtapes, threesomes, the amount of kids I have and the list goes on and on. We tend to see more usage of a Big 3 in sports particularly in basketball. Some say that this is a fad and will die off but those people probably remember Michael Jordan only on the Wizards so there basketball knowledge doesn’t count. This tactic has been used since the beginning with the Minneapolis Lakers led by George Mikan to the Celtics of the 60’s led by Bill Russell. The Big 3 component will always remain a focal point in the NBA. In recent years we have seen the Big 3 of the San Antonio Spurs, Heat, Suns, and Magic. One of my favorite Big 3 of all time was Run TMC with the Golden State Warriors. The combination of Tim Hardaway, Chris Mullin and Mitch Richmond was very exciting to watch. To see Tim do the UTEP 2-Step was like seeing a magic show live.

Well ladies and gentleman after speculation since draft day, there will be a new Big 3 in basketball residing in Cleveland, Ohio after the Cavs and Timberwolves have agreed on a deal to send Kevin Love to the Cavaliers in exchange for Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett and a 2015 protected first round pick. LeBron will now be a part of 2 Big 3’s in basketball history. That isn’t uncommon as Michael Jordan, Wilt Chamberlain, Ray Allen and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar have done the same thing.

I became a basketball fan in the mid to late 80’s thanks to my grandfather who used sports to teach me how to add and subtract and perform basic math operations. Thanks, Grandpop. What were some of the greatest Big 3’s you have seen? I will give you some of my favorite Big 3 combinations not in sequential order.

  1. Golden State Warriors- Tim Hardaway, Chris Mullin and Mitch Richmond

Even though they only played together for 2 seasons they were a problem for any defense. Run TMC was the highest scoring trio in the 1990-1991 seasons. They had more than a little buzz like Chris Mullin-Wale voice. Currently, two of the three are in the Hall of Fame. When will Hardaway join them???????

2. Milwaukee Bucks- Ray Allen, Sam Cassell and Glenn Robinson

They played together for 4 years together (1998-2002) and were a team to watch. Ray Allen was feeling like Jesus Shuttlesworth when Sam Cassell was the wily vet and floor general and Big Dog in the post was a Big Dog. However they ran into a young scrappy ballplayer better known as Allen Iverson and not long after that trio disbanded.

3. Orlando Magic- Shaquille O’Neal, Penny Hardaway, Nick Anderson

This is one of the teams that benefitted from the draft lottery back in the 90’s. First they draft Shaquille O’Neal and in an unprecedented move traded Chris Webber for Penny Hardaway. In retrospect could you imagine that frontcourt of Shaq and Chris Webber? Good grief-Charlie Brown voice. Penny Hardaway was the first of tall point guard from the 90’s world drawing comparison to Magic Johnson but when they faced the Rockets for the chip and that infamous Nick Anderson at the free throw line proved too much for them. If only medical technology was as advanced then as it now when it came to Penny’s injury.

4. Oklahoma City Thunder- Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, James Harden

One day my son Reid will ask me about basketball and I will sit him down like Bill Russell does us in those Uncle Drew commercials. Man oh man three straight lottery selections brought together three of the top 10 players in the league but to no avail as James Harden was traded for Kevin Martin and Jeremy Lamb. I smell a 30 for 30 coming soon especially if Durant leaves OKC.

5. Boston Celtics- Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett.

Anything is POSSSSSSSSSSSSSIIIIIIIIIIIIIIBBBBBBBBBBBBLLLLLLLLLLLLEEEEEEEEE-Kevin Garnett voice. We all know Boston is known for Big 3’s led by Russell and another one by Larry Bird. But this tandem wreaked havoc for 5 years running. Now Kevin Garnett won’t even shake Ray Allen hands.

6. Miami Heat- LeBron James, Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade

Not one…Not two. Not three players came together and created a stir across the league. 4 straight trips the Finals, 2 MVP’s, endless memes involving Chris Bosh and the most infamous champagne shower in NBA history. I prefer Henny if I win the chip. But let’s be honest with ourselves, LeBron is the greatest player in today’s game, Wade will go down as one of the best 2 guards ever and Chris Bosh will go down and the best of something before his career is over.

7. Charlotte Hornets- Larry Johnson, Muggsy Bogues, Alonzo Mourning

The Charlotte Hornets teal uniforms and fitted hats alone are arguably the toughest uniforms of all time. But, with the combination of LJ, ZO and Muggsy were a young team worth watching every day. Whether it was LJ showing off his gold tooth and Converse, Alonzo and his high top or Muggsy and his point guard skills. Who remembers the jumper Zo hit from the foul line and sent them to the playoffs?

8. Houston Rockets- Hakeem Olajuwon, Clyde Drexler, Kenny Smith

This trio of basketball players was known for offensive efficiency. Whether it was Hakeem Olajuwon making David Robinson jump like he was at a Kris Kross concert, Clyde Drexler running the fast break like Bo Jackson in Tecmo Bowl or Kenny Smith hitting clutch jumpers this team was a force to be reckoned as they won the chip against another Big 3 (Shaq, Penny, and Nick)

9.Utah Jazz- Hornacek, Stockton, Malone

What do you go when you add a black redneck, a PG from Gonzaga and a white guy that gets dropped by Jerry Stackhouse? You give up…you get the Western Conference champions two years in row. If it wasn’t for a MJ crossover (or push however you want to look at it) on Bryon Russell who knows maybe Utah has a championship banner hanging from the rafters but for now it’s just a debate in barbershops.

10. Chicago Bulls- Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Horace Grant (or Dennis Rodman or Toni Kukoc)

I know some of y’all are thinking what took me so long to bring up Michael Jordan. Well, I didn’t want to state the obvious but in any discussion, the big Joker in the deck will always be Michael Jordan. From this union they won 6 championships and cemented one of the greatest dynasties in NBA history.

I know this isn’t my all-time list and I know I have missed some so let me know what y’all think…

 

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How I Met your Mother

how i met your mother

So at work today we are talking about our favorite show and Martin comes up especially the how they met episode. This got me to thinking about the story on how me and my wife met. This is me telling Morgan, Reid and Hannah my rendition on how we met:

I’ve been put on this earth for a decade and some years so what that make me…I’m a grown ass man. At the age of 17, I decide to further my education to become an engineer at Morgan State University. Best 4+ years of my life. Made a lot of friends, gained a lot of respect and brothers, and even got a wife there. First couple of years was like a scrimmage. I’m learning the playbook, getting acquainted with all the right people and just ready to put my foot in the door. It wasn’t until 2003 where my life as I knew it changed. I became a member of the AI version of the 92 Dream Team but you know us as the Legends. From Rob Green to Corn to Cook to Cheers to J5 to Sonny to Tony to Juce to Rell and Larry we cement a legacy still going under the leadership of Ser Wylie, FT, Geno, Whitman and many other Brothers. Mind you I’m the big boy on this gig so expectations for me were a lot higher. Just because I was big didn’t mean I could dress sloppy or not bag women or not exemplify the ethics and values of what a Legend was supposed to be. See for those that partied with me back in the day knew my ankles and feet were lightweight it’s the rest of the body especially around the mid-section that was close to 300.  Quite frankly, big fella got moves.

You know the probate happens and I get introduced to frats and sororities across the nation. But you got to have love for people that rep the same school as you so of course the bond between us was strong as shit. From this, I met a Delta named Quianna who is now my wife and mother of my kids. But Morgan, Reid and Hannah you call her mommy. Just like the Martin episode when Martin and Gina explain how they met this is where the story gets interesting.

According to Quianna, we were both walking to Morgan View not together just on the same path. It starts to pour down raining and I got my headphones with no care in the world. She has on a Delta windbreaker and maybe even a Delta umbrella as well so I knew she was a Delta but since she didn’t live in my building she would need access to get in. I walk into 1540 and the door slams. Apparently, she starts banging on the door and I look at her and kept going. Now, Quianna you mean to tell me I looked at you and kept going. What time of ignorant shit is that? You mean to tell me I had you looking like Darryl from Coming to America when Lisa dumped him. You mean to tell me that I let your Puerto Rican hair get wet and now you looking like a broccoli stem. That ain’t even in my pedigree; my mom’s raised me better than that. I can honestly say I never heard a knock at the door. Of course, this starts a vicious venom that I didn’t even know existed. I couldn’t tell because she spoke every time, gave me a hug every time like I felt no shade whatsoever. But she ain’t bang with the kid and that’s cool because I was in a different world. I felt like Dwayne Wayne without the shades and Jordan’s but still cool nonetheless.

Time goes by and it’s the 2005 Spring Probate. Everybody is excited. New Nupes on the yard. My man Gumbs got half of the school in the pit. To this day, I wondered how all these niggas know you were on but I sips yak…thanks Kermit. So of course everybody is suits and ties looking sharp then here I come with the fresh suit and top hat and the only song I could think of was watch out for the big boy…..watch out for the big boy. With the campus packed all eyes is on us and them so I get a couple of looks and what do I see… a woman with her linesisters checking the big fella out. I remain cool but just know I peeped ya shorty. It wasn’t until later that I found out she even took a picture of me. I mean we was always cool so I didn’t look at it any other way then the big fella was looking better than normal and she took notice. Normally, she saw me in a white tee with a flight jacket and scully or fitted never dressed up to the nines in fine clothing because the next day I was back to the same shit. Do I think my name every came up when she and her group of girls got together? Absolutely not so my humble hat is  on nice and tight. I mean she was far from ugly. She was really cute and not ‘cute for a big girl’ either. For the record that’s not a compliment people so for those ladies that I leaned on because you said I’m cute for a big guy that’s why. It’s a backhanded compliment so as my man Harb would say ‘cut the crap’. Back to the story, I mean I would see her in the canteen which was always jumping and we would flirt and all that then one day I put on my best combination and asked her out. Guess what she said….oh you serious, I mean I thought we was joking I mean you just Sonny to me though. To this day, I don’t know what that meant but I was ready to give her the worst leaning known to man but then I probably wouldn’t be married with 3 kids either so the lesson I learned that day was pick your battles and when you need to be serious be serious. This was hard for me to grasp because I used laughter as a defensive mechanism when things didn’t go well with the ladies because I was big and black and under no circumstance could I turn into the angry man from Martin.

A few weeks later, it’s Valentine’s Day and the NUPES were passing out chocolate covered strawberries to some of the women on campus. I wonder if some women were hiding from me on purpose because I always felt there were some that was like come save me from the big nigga. I realize quick that I wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea that didn’t mean I stop trying, I just focused on those that were. So we in the canteen and I see her and not only did I give her a strawberry, I fed her that shit too. Mad comments like ‘you go boy’, ‘that’s what I’m talking about Sonny’, ‘that’s a smooth move right there big homie’ was heard amongst the crowd. She felt good and I’m glad I was the one that was able to do it. We were having a forum that night and she approaches with the how you doing monologue and she asks me, ‘Sonny do you have a valentine’ and I was like ‘Nope what about you, she was like no’ Stop right there, I know what you thinking this is where Sonny goes for the kill but remember a few weeks prior I was just Sonny to her so instead I say ‘hi-5 better luck next year and I walk off’ I didn’t turn around to see her face. This was a pivotal move because this could have easily been the end of that friendship but it wasn’t. I wonder if she was like no this fat mothafucka didn’t…I got something for his ass. It was all love though and the same flirting continued for a few years.

It wasn’t until 2007 Homecoming in the Delta suite where I decided to approach her again. Granted, I didn’t have on the best attire. I had on a blue hoody tied up with a matching skully and Chuck Taylor’s but I was serious with my approach. She could tell I was serious and then she gave me her number. But the last 4 digits were only 2 numbers though: 0099. So in my mind I’m like man she just played the shit outta me but I’m chill because worst thing that could happen is that I holla at another girl. I think she saw the potential and we laughed about the whole number situation. I waited about 3 days and called no response. No big deal I was chillin I get a call back a day or two later and the conversation just flows naturally. It wasn’t nothing for a 4 hour conversation to occur and we had fun. We went on our first date at Friday’s and I never forgot she looked good and I had on this police jacket. Leave it up to my dad to say you wanna kill her son wear this. Everything was good it was a new avenue explored between two friends and of course this was never supposed to happen. If this was a Vegas bet I’d say 50-1 odds we would be together…that’s precisely why I don’t bet. The date is wrapping up we outside at the car and the awkward do I go for the first kiss comes about. I’m like fuck it go hard or go home but instead of locking lips I got a shiny forehead. I don’t know if it was sweat or she had the Bruce Leroy glow nevertheless she got the forehead kiss like Taye Diggs gave Nia Long in the Best Man. It wasn’t the result I was looking for but hey I went for the kill so I can live with it. We were discussing a second date and she was like I could pay for the next date and jokingly I was like ‘hell yeah do that shit’ it was all a joke but it almost cost me a second date. I’m glad she has a sense of humor. Kids fast forward to 2014 where my oldest is 5 and my youngest is a month, I got a house a couple cars and a bunch of stories that I’m about to tell. Until next time…Stay classy Planet Earth

*I wonder what her version is going to be…..

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Sticks and stones may break my bones but Words CAN hurt She

Stephen-A-Smith

For the days that I get an opportunity to DVR my favorite shows such as Game of Thrones, Boardwalk Empire and of course First Take, I get to fully analyze each episode in its entirety. Well on Friday, Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless were discussing the NFL ruling on Ray Rice’ suspension which was only 2 games. Quite frankly, I don’t think that is enough time and it show that Roger Goodell is inconsistent with his discipline. You can suspend a coach who is telling the players to hurt opposing players which is the object of the game according to older players for older generations and even giving them some money for a year but a man allegedly knocked a woman out and gets only 2 games. What message does that send to women? What message is the NFL conveying to women by this suspension? I say allegedly because I don’t have any ocular proof that Ray actually hit her. Based off of the surveillance tape, it looks like an unconscious woman stretched out on the ground and a man looking like a deer in headlights as to what his next move should be. My first question is why they didn’t release the tape from the elevator ride to actual show what happened. If they can show Solange going Chun-Li on Hov then why not Ray on Janay. Please don’t tell me Ray has more clout than Jay because I don’t believe that for a second. But this isn’t about the incident itself, this is about the dialogue that transpired about the ruling.

We all know Stephen A. Smith. He’s known for his sharp suits, shape-up, his vocabulary and constant yelling at Skip Bayless’ opinion to certain subjects. When Stephen A speaks, I need a dictionary or I press pause so I can understand what he is actually saying. He’s the Cornel West of the sports world. Stephen A. Smith made some comments regarding how we always discuss the end result of a domestic abuse situation which is the man hitting the woman but we never discuss the whole situation. My dad always told me there are 3 sides to every story: his side, her side and the truth. Sadly, we will never know the truth because all parties have cooperated for the betterment of themselves and not the bigger issue at hand which is domestic violence. He said let’s discuss preventative measures for both parties but ultimately no man should ever put their hands on a woman. Let’s take it a step further nobody should put their hands on nobody. Stephen A. Smith ideals and principles had logic and it made perfect sense but his delivery and wordplay was suspect which is ironic since he is known for his extensive vocabulary. If the Dave Chappelle show was still around this would be a great, “When Keeping It Real Goes Wrong”.  I agree with what Stephen A. Smith said but his words made it seem like it’s a woman’s fault that they get hit. In some cases a man and I used that word loosely in this sentence just put their hands on a woman just to flex their strength on them but this is a No Flex Zone area. I think we need to have a discussion on the accountability of all parties because it takes two to tango but in this case I don’t want to be the leader.

Is domestic abuse a one sided affair? Is it always going to be the man’s fault when this occurs? For example, UFC fighter Ronda Rousey is one of the baddest women in the planet. If she beats up her boyfriend is it still domestic abuse or she is lauded as a hero and do women begin to poke their chest out? Does she become the ambassador of what will happen if you mess with a woman? But, if the woman is the aggressor do the same rules apply. If she knocks out someone is she an abuser or was it self-defense or since he’s a man he should always be dominant than a female and overpower her. Let me remind you this woman gets paid handsomely to beat the shit out of an opponent so do we look at her man as an opponent or nah. I know men who got abused by their women but if they report it, they are referred to as a bitch, a sucker, a simp and many condescending names but if they retaliate and put their hands on a woman then they are called the same words so what if anything does a man do in this situation. If the shoe was on the other foot and Janay Palmer knocks out Ray Rice in the elevator are we looking at this case the same way? Are we saying Ray Rice was a victim of domestic abuse or are we making memes and endless jokes about how he can take a hit from a grown ass man but not from a petite female? Would Janay be faced with criminal charges?

Men must show restraint in these situations but women y’all must realize your actions as well. Is it possible that there are some women out there that have a mentality where they think nothing can happen to them because they are women but then when it gets real and something does happen, it’s a reality check that they can’t cash? I think we should be able to create a dialogue where opinions can get expressed without any conflict. Unfortunately, conflict is inevitable but abuse isn’t. Men we are in a losing situation when in conflict with a woman. From first-hand experience, I had a woman throw a drink on me because she thought I called her a bitch. I didn’t call her a bitch it was another dude that tried to spit game and got rejected and that was his response. Now that I think about it how drunk was she for her not to know which nigga was hitting on her. Nevertheless, I didn’t call her a bitch but I just got caught in the crossfire. After the drink hit my face, I was shocked, caught off guard and furious at the same damn time. Some things people should never do to each other: spit on them, throw drinks on them and throw sucker punches. Can’t lie I wanted to pop her like Mike Epps did women on How High but I know that was a movie and secondly I didn’t have any powder(Mike Epps was a pimp in that movie, I don’t know if that makes it any better but I just wanted the facts to be out in the open). So instead of throwing the haymaker from Hell, I began to restrain her but of course me being 6 feet tall and almost 300 pounds it looks like I was beating her. Now to some people I was dead ass wrong saying I should know better, some think I was too soft and should of beat the dog shit out of her and others say, Sonny you were in a lose-lose situation so damned if you do damned if you don’t. In this instance could we discuss the woman’s actions or nah. See I feel she had no right to throw a drink on me, if she was upset she could have expressed herself in a different manner but with her being a woman all the accountability was throw on me and none was thrown at her. Now if I balled my fist up and hit like a grown man, I deserve whatever repercussion that was coming my way but I just restrain her. For the record it was never an ego thing where I had to flex on her and show her who the biggest boss is because I know I am a big ass dude and that’s not a good look on me so hitting her was never an option. The lesson I learned from that was to keep myself out of areas where situations like this could happen because alcohol was flowing, emotions were running high and somebody was going to learn today-Kevin Hart voice.

Like I said earlier, I agree with what Stephen A. Smith said regarding the discussion of preventative measures because accountability needs to be shared for all the parties. But, what upsets me the most is that he says repeatedly, ‘under no circumstance should a man hit a woman’ and yet he’s getting in trouble. I think the real issue is the arena that he chose to express himself which was primetime daytime TV on one of the biggest channels in the world which is ESPN. Millions of people watch First Take every day so of course his thoughts were going to go viral. I know he didn’t have any malice in his comments but those comments would have been more appropriate in a different setting like a barber shop, poker night maybe even a family barbecue or someplace else just not on ESPN. This wasn’t the place to express himself and because of that ESPN had to make an example out of him.

Based upon his comments, Stephen A. Smith has been suspended until next Wednesday from ESPN First Take and any other ESPN affiliated shows. This suspension is about a week long which is half the suspension Ray Rice received and he actually committed the crime. Oh the irony in that shit. I wonder if Michelle Beadle, a colleague of ESPN didn’t make any comments would this suspension even happen. Even though he was bashed for his comments some people defended him most notably Whoopi Goldberg. So does she get suspended as well because they are owned by the same network? Does she get any backlash for defending Stephen A. Smith or was her delivery and word choice more tasteful and her reasoning could be understood better than what Stephen A Smith was trying to convey in his diatribe. I think Stephen A went wrong when he used the word ‘provoke’. The word ‘provoke’ came off as a trigger word which would imply that it’s a woman’s fault if she gets hit by a man and that’s not the case at all.  Like Drake said, let’s take a negative and turn it into a positive picture by talking about this issue and the impact that it has on society. Let’s start a dialogue on what can be done to prevent such a heinous crime. Let’s begin to pontificate our opinions and not denigrate someone’s experience and use words that would create such an egregious mistake (for the record that was my best Stephen A. Smith attempt if you watch the show then you know what I mean). Here’s a comment based off of the ruling by ESPN: “Stephen A Smith said nothing wrong and the suspension is outright ridiculous! The man simply expressed how women need to take more precautionary measures as it relates to domestic violence. And while doing this, he repeatedly stated that in no way, shape or form does he condone men hitting women. We keep talking about the men but we as people have to understand that women are not 100% blameless in every single domestic violence situation. DV goes both ways and I believe Stephen A just offered a bit of wisdom to women who find themselves in escalating situation. The media has taken his commentary and portrayed it as if he said it with harmful intent and I am outraged that it has gone this far. “

What are your thoughts about the above comment? What are your thoughts about this subject or ruling? Do you think Stephen A. Smith should have been suspended? Have you been victims of domestic abuse, if so were they preventative measures that could have been used to prevent this situation from escalating? Have you abused someone and if so why did you do it? Let me know your thoughts and for the record.

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Story of a Different World

dwaynewhitley1

To the girl that I met in college/ Trying to acquire knowledge/ brokered with stocks to make some dollars/ Smart as one of them scholars/ Can hang with the big wigs and their collards/ Without wearing a big wig and smelling like collards/ Piecing the puzzle together creating collages/ As I acknowledge your style kid/ don’t have a lot of mileage/ pat myself on the back for what I did/ Form something special like a collage or pic stitch/ Of us at a picnic/ or of this trip/ or do you remember this shit/using it as a guide for her wardrobe/ whether a peplum or backless/ No lines but she’s my favorite actress/ curves like the stitches of a mattress/ doesn’t play games so no need for practice/ laying her on this apparatus/ looking at my phone to update my apps status/don’t know what you have until it’s gone using Janis tactics/ Looking at her face adding pallets to her MAC list/but she’s the only one so I’m Mac less/ If it’s a crime then it’s entrapment/ stuck to her like an attachment/ because the fact is/ when we match wits/ crunch the number like mathematics/ got the key like a blacksmith/ it’s a triumph like inspectah deck and his wu track jackets/ now I can to go the peaceful place knowing I can touch the flesh of the only woman that has made me weak and strong at the same time/ to the woman in the kitchen cooking up ideas as her man sit on the IKEA plotting on how much he need her/ She’s freaking the recipe/ To fill up the rest of me respectively/ in my mind telepathy/ she’s selective  see got my hand raise saying select me please/ After we’re thru I’m not sedated/ more like resting see/ I’m elated that I was patient instead of going after all 4 on elimidate and get eliminated/ going after the wrong one feeling all jaded/ instead of standing on top like hair that’s faded/ Seeing her face when I say honey we made it/ And that’s before seeing her naked/ her standing there with the decision to give me the permission to go fishing until I end up missing entering the 36 chambers like a shaolin kitchen/ She say don’t be shy go in stop bitching/ She’s my drug  and the prescription just adds to my sickness for her fluid creates an euphoria/ Got me feeling like the king staying at the Astoria because I’m coming in America/ her independence, her freedom, her ability to fight has put me on flight where the tunnel vision of her is the only thing in sight/ But I don’t mind this plight/ Because if loving her is wrong then I don’t wanna be right/ After we finish all we can say is good night

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Wiggin Out over Love

andrew wiggins

June 26th, 2014 in front of a packed house in Madison Square Garden and in front of millions across the globe, the Cleveland Cavaliers selected Andrew Wiggins with the first pick in the NBA Draft. His floral jacket had him singing John Legend because he was on Cloud 9. He was the man of the hour and hopefully the mulligan that Cleveland hoped for since their last year number one pick Anthony Bennett didn’t do so well. Don’t get me wrong it’s plenty of time for Bennett so stop it with the NBA bust title. July 12th, 2014 the world took a step back as LeBron James announced that he will come back home and play for Cleveland Cavaliers. Everyone is excited and Wiggins gets to play with the best player in the game. Fast forward a couple more weeks now Kevin Love wants to play for the Cavs meaning Andrew Wiggins chance to play with the King could be over before it started. I know Andrew is like what the fuck Kev. I wonder if Andrew is listening to the hook of that Jay Z and Too Short classic, “it was all good just a week ago”. Now, if not all of sports talk is gearing towards a blockbuster trade involving Cleveland and Minnesota that will make Cleveland the team to beat in NBA 2K15 because in the real world there are some teams over West that got something to say about that. If you were the GM of these perspective teams, who would you rather have: Andrew Wiggins or Kevin Love?

Everyone has as many opinions about this topic as the amount of seasons of Real World. We already know Coach K would trade for Love in an instant. We know deep down Flip wants Klay Thompson. As a matter of facts here are some other things we already know: Wiggins is only 19 and can’t get a max deal for another 5 years, Kevin Love is 25 and even if he is traded to the Cavs can still opt out for max money next year. Wiggins has star potential as high as his vertical but it may take some time to adjust to the NBA game while Kevin is already a perennial All-Star and an Olympian. Wiggins is still as raw and an unsigned hype MC from the Source days but he plays defense and will make about 5.5 million annuallywhereas Kevin plays defense as good as James Harden but he gets buckets and will make about 20 million annually in his next deal.

Both of these players have their strengths as well as weaknesses but this is where GM’s make their money and where history is written. The necessity to win and to win now in conjunction with salary cap limitations, long term security and team chemistry are all factors that must be considered with this decision. I can imagine Cleveland’s GM David Griffin is calling Ms. Cleo for advice on what to do because these questions will remain: How does Cleveland fare with Wiggins? Is Love worth mortgaging half your future for a possible one year rental? How will the Cavs or Timberwolves recover from such a move? This move can make Cleveland and/or Minnesota re-emerge to the top and defeat the goliaths of the NBA like Little Giants did against the Cowboys (Gumbs, even as kids the Cowboys are taking L’s) so I call this decision the Annexation of Puerto Rico.

David Blatt, new Cavs coach, will be walking into a great situation regardless of who is there; Wiggins or Love. Whichever team  Wiggins plays for knows that he will get major PT off the rip-Stevie J voice. This could impact the amount of minutes Dion Waiters gets for the Cavs or Zach Levine with the Timberwolves so could this trade turn into a three team trade where something gets Dion Waiters. One team that is interested in his services is the Philadelphia 76ers. They have money to burn and need to spend it quick maybe they give up Thaddeus Young and some expiring contracts to help facilitate this deal. All parties win in that respect and now the NBA season can officially start. Even if Dion Waiters doesn’t get traded he should be an early candidate for 6th man of the year.

Either place would be a great start for Wiggins because both teams have great ball handlers so there isn’t a need for Wiggins to handle the ball as often as before. Wiggins’ defense on the perimeter helps out the Cavs immediately. With Wiggins on the Cavs the pressure wouldn’t be as daunting because they have LeBron James and Kyrie Irving already there as established talent. Wiggins will have the opportunity to learn from the best player in the game and continue to blossom into a great player. He could contribute immediately but I don’t see a real impact until year 2 or 3. Wiggins’ future and development will skyrocket the max deals in 2016 after this new TV deal. Believe or not, Wiggins is still a teenager and with LeBron playing the old head role on a team of young gunners like Tom Shepherd from Above the Rim, he has the chance to live up to the hype that has propelled him as one of the greatest players since you guessed it…LeBron James. If he can’t learn from James then he will be remembered as a “what if” guy. Keeping Wiggins on the Cavs will give them a third star just not expeditiously as Joe Clarke would say but a star nonetheless. Is it fair to compare a James-Wiggins combo to Jordan-Pippen or am I reaching like a defender who just got crossed up by AI or Jamal Crawford.

Wiggins has some similarities to Pippen with respect to being a great perimeter defender who can score but will always be overshadowed by a better player which in this case is LeBron James. Even when Pippen was in Jordan’s shadow, he still went to the all-star 7 games and was on the all-defensive team 10 times. The big difference between these two couples is their age. Jordan and Pippen are only a few years apart whereas LeBron is 10 years older than Wiggins which means Wiggins can cement his own legacy and not be overshadowed by LeBron. When LeBron is beginning his battle with father time, Andrew will be just hitting the alarm clock. If Wiggins stays with Cleveland they still have a great chance to win now and they don’t sacrifice their financial future or draft picks in the process. Sometimes this win-now mentality proves to be a detriment to a franchise instead of an improvement (i.e. Knicks, Nets and others). I know everyone can’t have the farm system of the San Antonio Spurs but if there’s a model you want to use as the blueprint don’t look any further.

I’ve talked about Andrew Wiggins and how he’s a good fit for the Cavs now let’s talk about Love. If Love comes to the Cavs, they are one of the favorites to win a title now. They should win the Eastern Conference with a lineup of James, Love, Irving and the crew from Sunset Park. First thing first chemistry between these three players would be essential in the success of the Cavs. Because if this doesn’t work in Year 1, Kevin can leave and still get his money somewhere else and now your future is getting buckets in Minnesota instead of Cleveland. Kevin Love is the best power forward in the game and he can score which will make the pick and pop game as scary as the Monstars in the first half of Space Jam. Even though all of them are primary scoring options someone is going to sacrifice personal stats for team stats and the ultimate team stat is chips. Would Love be an improved Chris Bosh in this scheme? Would Cleveland be one of the highest scoring teams in the league with Love?

Where this is good there is bad, with all the buckets Kevin Love drops on a nightly basis, his weaknesses are on the defensive end. Sometimes he’s thinking about scoring his next bucket instead of stopping the other team from getting their bucket. Cleveland would have to pray that his jumper stay wet like hurricane season because his defensive shortcomings will be exploited and could be the chink in the Cavs armor that the rest of the league is looking for. Sometimes it feels like Kevin plays defense like Jamie Lannister because he only uses one hand. Cleveland would be a favorite in the East but watch out for those Chicago Bulls and Western teams like the San Antonio White Walkers ( I mean Spurs, OKC and possibly the Clippers). This will take some time for this super team to flourish to ultimate heights. Remember the Big 3 in Miami took 2 years; the question is how many years is Kevin willing to give?

One thing to remember is that Kevin is only 25 and has a good 7-10 years of basketball left but after this year; Kevin puts on his Beats by Dre and has Wu-Tang looping because Cash Rules Everything Around Me gotta get the money dolla dolla bill yaaaahhh. Love can opt out his contract and can easily get a 5 yrs. / 100 million deal for an assortment of teams. Could Love be the white Dwight Howard and force a trade to a team just to leave for another team a year later? That would be running through my mind if I were David Griffin but if you are a gambling man like Antoine Walker this could be a move that you have to make. Even though, Kevin Love is worth it signing him to a max deal will leave Cleveland’s payroll as thin as Jared from Subway but at least they don’t have to worry about anyone from their Big 3 leaving no time soon….unless LeBron decides to leave in 2016 but I doubt that happens. If Love is the third max player than other players like Dion Waiters, Tristan Thompson will be left out in the cold. Just know either combination with James and Kyrie would work but the question is how quick you want this work. From a GM’s perspective will you be like Rod Thorn when he rejected a trade for Dr. J to keep Michael Jordan or will you be Billy King and trade away your future for the present. Only time will tell and since time is moving slow so are the Cavs and Timberwolves.

Calling all young directors, we have a potential ESPN 30 for 30 in the making. Don’t believe just watch. All I ask is that I get a chance to narrate it but if Frank Caliendo is available I will understand.

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Love and Basketball

love and basketball

In 2008 a kid from UCLA moves across the country to Minnesota. He’s almost 19 years old. He wants to win but his team isn’t that good. This is the same team that had 4 draft picks in the first round and got Ricky Rubio, Jonny Flynn, Ty Lawson and Wayne Ellington and traded all of them except Rubio because he went back to Spain. But imagine if instead of Flynn, they do Stephen Curry, I don’t know if we are even having this discussion right now. Their love-hate relationship lasts into the final years of his rookie contract, with Kevin’s desire to win and Minnesota’s desire to lose separating them, except when trade talks begin because that’s when they care about Kevin while he just does what he wants. As of now their pro careers are at a crossroads until they meet again. It’s time for a final game of one-on-one with everything on the table. It’s all or nothing. Either you trade Kevin now and get some valuable assets or you let him walk next year and you get nothing. It’s like the final scene of love and basketball when Sanaa Lathan says I want to play for your heart, deep down Kevin Love is like cool now Imma dunk on their neck and say, “should of left you dead nigga” like the classic Dave Chappelle skit.

So far there are three teams (Cleveland, Golden State and Chicago) are courting Kevin Love like the light skin girl from She’s gotta have it. But in this case, he’s gotta have a chance to win, go to the playoffs possibly contend for a title. Luckily, all three teams pose that option. But it’s not all what it seems. Even though they are interested in him since he would be using his Early Termination Option he could opt out play for one year then still be a free agent. All that means is that you could be renting a luxury piece of land for only a year instead of creating a mortgage for at least 5 and up. Which team has the best chance?

Let’s look at Cleveland who has morphed into contention overnight with the signing of the best player in basketball; LeBron James. I know somebody is going to say Kobe Bryant but get real let LeBron have his turn. You have LeBron and three number one picks from the past 4 years in Kyrie Irving, Anthony Bennett and Andrew Wiggins. This is a young team where LeBron is the elder statesman but at 29 and having 11 years in the league, it’s the role that LeBron needs to take. With him entering the latter part of his career is this team suitable for LeBron. Enter door number 1, a 6’10 260 Power forward who averages 26.1 points a game and 12.5 rebounds a game who also shoots close to 40 percent from the 3 point line. No this isn’t a created player this is Kevin Love. Kevin is the best power forward in the league and if you want a big man that can stretch the floor he is the genesis. In order to get him you must provide a package worthy of consideration. So far the best combination is Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett and a future 1st round pick. Now, Cleveland has 3 first round picks in the 2015 Draft, they are going to have to throw at least one more pick in there but is it really worth all of that. Will K Love continue to have those numbers if he is with LeBron? What will the chemistry be like with Love? In the short term it sounds like a good idea, what about long term because LeBron only signed a 2 year deal. Quite frankly, LeBron can opt out next year and be a free agent like Love. Cleveland has the money now but in this era where every Big 3 ain’t a Big 3, is the sacrifice of possibly a transcendent player in Wiggins worth it. If you ask Coach K, he would do in a second. A lot of people feel the same way but its obvious Cleveland’s GM doesn’t feel that way. Wiggins has superstar potential. Love has superstar production. With James being back in Cleveland the expectations are at an all-time high. Will Cleveland must use a win-now mentality instead of planning for the future? When a franchise has a legitimate chance to contend for a title right now do you make that trade? Another scary component is that Love is only 25, Kyrie is only 22 and James is 29. If Cleveland can sign Love, their window to win a title will be left open for a long time. To paraphrase Nino Brown, “this is bigger than LeBron James baby, if Cleveland wins a chip, we all win a chip” Imagine the insanity if Cleveland wins a title, would Spike Lee make a movie from it? Could I narrate the ESPN 30 for 30 on that team? Financial flexibility would become an issue with 3 max contracts but that’s what the accountants are for let the players play but if you play that you weigh then you can stay baby. Cleveland is trying to create a package that won’t contain Andrew Wiggins and if Flip takes a deal without Wiggins it will be from another team….Enter door number 2 the Golden State Warriors

Golden State Warriors are an exciting team to watch with the Splash Brothers, high octane offense and the many crossovers from Stephen Curry. To add a player of Love’s caliber you must be willing to part with some heavy pieces. An offer of David Lee, Harrison Barnes and Klay Thompson has been sent to Flip Saunders. Consequently, there are conflicting reports about the availability of Klay Thompson. If Klay Thompson is available you do that trade not now but right now. I can understand the mindset of Flip Saunders; he wants veterans’ players with tangible stats not a mock report. David Lee is a double-double machine, Barnes has yet to hit his stride like the hype that has preceded him and Klay can play. Minnesota would gain three starters to join Rubio and Pekovic not to mention bench players like Shved, Levine, Muhammad and others. It may not make the playoffs but it wouldn’t be a rebuilding team. Some reports I have heard is that Minnesota doesn’t value David Lee as much as Golden State does that’s why they insist they include Klay Thompson in this deal. I disagree with Minnesota’s stance with that granted David is a few years older but he has range, he can stretch the floor but when you have the best PF you can make up your own rules. Right now, Golden State has the best offer, a lineup of Bogut, Love, Iggy and Curry would be dangerous, but if Steve Kerr doesn’t win 50+ games and reach Western Conference Finals he should be fired. *Bring Back Mark Jackson* until they decide on whether or not Klay is in on this trade then K to the Bay is dead.

Not so fast Mr. Postman, we have another team that wants to play and they are on their worst behavior. “Hold up, hold my phone
Motherfuckers never loved us….Remember? Remember? Motherfucker Remember? Hold up, hold my phone, they used to never want to hear us Remember? Motherfucker never loved us
Remember? Motherfucker Remember? Worst behavior”. Enter the Chicago Bulls. With a key signing in free agency with Pau Gasol, the draft trade for Doug McDermott and the return of Derrick Rose this team is a force to be reckoned with. Chicago made some great moves this offseason with Gasol, Aaron Brooks, drafting McDermott and Bairstow, not to mention Mirotic a Spanish prospect from overseas coming to the states, and the emergence of Jimmy Butler and Tony Snell could prove to be formidable without a Kevin Love. Mirotic is a 6’10 power forward who can shoot as well so is Kevin Love really a good fit here. Chicago has proposed an offer of McDermott, Mirotic and Gibson for Love. I know its quality over quantity but this Chicago Bulls team is already loaded as is. If you didn’t the last NBA Finals it was about San Antonio’s depth that provided an edge over the superstars of Miami. With a great coach in Thibs, a top 5 defense and now a bunch of shooters this team is still in contention for the title in the East. I can’t be mad at the Bulls for trying to acquire Love but it would destroy Chicago’s balance and it will destroy their identity which is defense. Sure, Kevin Love is arguably a top 5 player in this league but is it worth an identity change to acquire him. I think deep down, Chicago is really playing a chess match with Cleveland making them give up everything so they have a better chance to win instead of Cleveland.

If I was Flip right now, I would wait until I found out for certain Klay Thompson is available because if he is, Kevin Love is going to Golden State not Cleveland. Golden State in my opinion presents the best package plus with the other teams you’re trading a known commodity for the unknown and that only work some of the time in sports but in any other field this wouldn’t even be a thought. May the best GM win.

Da-da-da…da-da-da

 

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Tossing and Turning

insomnia

Tossing and turning/ Kid kicks me in the sternum/ or in the back to make room/ as she tries to groom/ me with the sharp pains that constantly hit my pregnant wife/ these are the days of my present life/ But this night was different/ for instance the distance between me and her was infinite/ nothing significant/ wasn’t belligerent/ the difference  between night and day/ Al. B Sure to take notice/ how some things are bogus/ can’t breathe the same air like I got a nose lift/ but I keep pressing on/ dropping the family off at their destination/ wishing there was a desk waiting/ phone calls to answer/ things getting hot this is a sign cancer but I’m just a little helper like prancer/ sleighing across the city as everyone else brings gifts/ Not just for one day but once every 2 weeks/ like a nigga after leaving the gym I’m too weak/ going on day 14 so about 2 week/ starting to become a routine/ not smiling thinking I’m too mean/ filled with envy because I’m too green/ Grass needs to be cut to remove the snake you’ve seen/ channeling 08 Barack cause it’s time to dream/ instead of 2 chains it’s 2 dreams/ Putting my body through physical activity on a daily basis/ just to go to places/ and see their faces/ when they say they lose weight kid/ whether it’s the gym or insanity/ I press my body to the limits/ boxing with the best like robin givens/ to get the nutrition/ that helps me lose the ricky, Ronnie, mike, ralph and bobby I meant new edition/ they say it would be tricky, beyond me, type bout that would make me quit but not me that’s the new prescription/read between the lines as I prepare for the new addition/ family wise can’t let family die/ stuck my peter in her lotus oops I meant lois now I’m a family guy/ whether it’s me coming home or going to homecoming they say I’m losing weight like fit club/ hopefully this isn’t the only way I get love/ Teeth clinched like I bit cuz/ ready to fight for this put my fists up/ despite my gripe I continue to fight as I type and search for a job that’s right/ I log into my account as I count the email that’s reads in detail/ how I can buy retail once I talk to this female/ my body have been trained to work but right now it derail/ going up and down like weight on the scale/keep going because I don’t want them to see me fail/ I check the websites because my career level is still a rookie/ I continue to build her/ As I proceed to indeed I just want to be simply hired/ Because I’m simply tired/ of having to roll the dice/ locking knees with Lockheed or the D-o-D/ change the vowel now I’m a D-A-D/ but for now it’s unemployment and the 860/ Gotta do something to change the pace quickly/

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Reflection

I’m doing something a little different…I’ve been writing off and on for quite some time now. Plus, I need to diversify my bonds nigga (GZA voice)

reflection

Waking up in the morning standing in the mirror/ looking at my reflection as I ‘m reflecting/ reliving last night with no recollection/ probably filled with deception/ thanking the lord for another blessing/ just know these mistakes we’ll be addressing/ from your adolescence until you learn your lesson/on your knees confessing/ How good I am? / But I’m living life backwards so am I good/ those are thoughts running through my mind/ as I grind to stay  forward but I still fall behind/ the 8 ball gravitating to the corner looking to pocket money/ despite the cries don’t do it sonny/ then He speaks/ he presents me an opportunity/ to trust in Him even though I opt to scrutiny/ non believers asking who is HE/ just trying to survive so will it be you or me/ I embody all similarities to whom he saved/ whether it’s lazarus who he raised from the dead/ or david hitting goliath in his head/ didn’t have the strength to swim so instead teach me to tread/ if you don’t think you can get past that think about Meshach, abed-nego and shadrach/ sitting in a furnace/ the fire increasing 7 times over/ right when you think it’s over/ there’s someone over your shoulder/ you yelling holy smoke is this the holy ghost/ HE just whispers hold me close/ that’s when the Lord flourish/ with HIS emergence for his servant/ in every occurrence because we didn’t obey the serpent/  there was no cohersion no deterrent/ to keep us clean like detergent/ready for war like an insurgent/ hearing our cries in service/ providing us a message in sermon that will encourage/ you ever pray for something and you get nothing/ begin to wonder if God was bluffing/ you get to fighting and fussing/ only calling out God’s name when you cussing/ but in that moment of weakness aka suffering/ there are 3 things to consider in that discussion/ suffering is temporary, educational and beneficial/ so do you praise the Lord because he’s benefical or cause he’s been official/ time and time it have been proven/ that even when you losing/ he’s the one for choosing/ This is no fiction all fact/ when we got saved we made a pact/ that we must stay in tact/ even when we fade to black/ and there’s that casket/ with a flower basket/ slow singing of spirituals/ a eulogy with remarks which is just a restart of the life everlasting/ as life is forever passing/ but in this New place there is no rowhouse/ or condos/ you’re not a stranger no john doe /or apartments/ your new mansion one room is bigger than apartment/ reuniting with people that have been a part since/ we meet Lord/ as the music from the chord sounds a reward let the angels know one more is about to soar/ we will be persecuted even persuaded to betray it when we feel jaded/ but remember his love never faded/ so it’s your turn to live off his word/ because you never left to die your left to preserve

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NBA Mock Draft 3.0

nba draft

With the NBA Draft hours away, New York City is jamming with photographers, limos and young men in suits waiting to hear their name called and their lives change forever. Good luck and best wishes to them all. Back in 1993 after winning the 9-10 year old championship I just knew this would be me one day but then I saw Arthur Agee and William Gates and thought nah they can have the hoop dreams, I’ll just play football or become a genius. Fast forward 21 years later we are almost ready for the 2014 NBA Draft. As in my previous mock drafts, I will only be doing the lottery picks so why not one more mock before we hear commentators and fans cheering for their favorite teams.

1. Cleveland Cavaliers- Andrew Wiggins, Kansas

I think Dan Gilbert will pull a Jerry Jones and go with his guy Andrew Wiggins even though his management team wants Parker. Either way you will get a centerpiece for your organization. I wouldn’t be surprised if they trade this pick but if they don’t, Andrew Wiggins’ upside on both ends of the floor may be too good to pass up. Furthermore if Anthony Bennett comes back in better shape and not as nervous he could be another addition because let’s be real he still a rookie.

2. Milwaukee Bucks- Jabari Parker, Duke

Jabari has already stated that he would love to play for the Bucks which probably made the owner’s ears ring like the Liberty Bell. He wouldn’t be far from home which is Chicago and he will be teamed up with the Greek Freak which could become a nice frontcourt with a healthy Larry Sanders.

3. Philadelphia 76ers- Dante Exum, Australia

Philly gets their 1B prospect in Exum. Pairing him up with Michael Carter-Williams will provide tremendous amounts of length on the wing and can give backcourts nightmares. However, this could be the pick that seals the fate for Michael Carter-Williams. I wouldn’t trade him at all. I would keep him and build a backcourt teams should be afraid of.

4. Orlando Magic- Noah Vunleh, Indiana

Now that the first three picks are over let’s begin with the other prospects. What’s interesting is that if Noah stayed in school and Exum went to college they could have been teammates. But that was then and this now and Orlando adds a big man to help out Vucevic. Affalo has been traded so they could in other directions such as Marcus Smart or Joel Embiid. This pick could cause a domino effect that only the sugar company can package up. Other options could be Marcus Smart, Joel Embiid, Elfrid Payton or trade.

5. Utah Jazz- Joel Embiid, Kansas

What was once the potential number one pick has slipped in the draft and maybe even further after reports from Chad Ford of ESPN stating that there may be more problems with Embiid besides his back and foot. Is this just a stunt to push teams away or is this facts only? We don’t know as of right now but when healthy he can be one of the better rim protector and can create a formidable frontcourt with Kanter and Favors.  Other options could be Vunleh and Julius Randle.

6. Boston Celtics- Marcus Smart, Oklahoma State

I know they said there were in love with Aaron Gordon but Danny Ainge was a point guard who loves point guards so why not draft a point guard. He could play alongside Rondo now or he can be the insurance policy in the event that Rondo leaves next year. Nevertheless you are getting a combo guard that can play both ends of the floor and has the tenacity of a bull chasing a matador.  Other options are Aaron Gordon, Joel Embiid, Noah Vunleh or trade.

7. Los Angeles Lakers- Elfrid Payton, Louisiana-Lafayette

This will be the first of many shockers in this draft, I presume but Elfrid Payton has skyrocketed up the charts like a female pockets after she wins a child support case with a rich person. He has impressed in all of his workouts. He was third in NCAA in free throws attempts so he gets to the basket. At 6’4 with excellent hands, acceleration, quickness and athleticism he could be a great pick and cheap replacement for Steve Nash who is stealing by the way. Other options are Julius Randle, Aaron Gordon, Joel Embiid or trade.

8. Sacramento Kings- Julius Randle, Kentucky

Julius has had the NBA body since high school and now he will get the chance to show it as he joins a frontcourt of Rudy Gay and DeMarcus Cousins. He provides a low post presence and can create offense for others. Sure his foot may have caused him to drop a couple of spots but Sacramento with good coaching and a cohesive environment can shock the NBA this year. Elfrid Payton would be an awesome pick here as well but with resigning Isaiah Thomas maybe they go in other directions like a trade.

9. Charlotte Hornets- Doug McDermott, Creighton

Dougie McBuckets gets his chance to continue his reign of a wicked jumpshot that only Biggie could imagine with young talent such as Kemba Walker, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Al Jefferson. If McDermott can teach Michael how to shoot, holy toledo. He’s a great 2 guard that can shoot from anywhere in the gym and can create instant offense in the event they try to double team Al Jefferson.

10. Philadelphia 76ers- Aaron Gordon, Arizona

With the second pick in the 1st round, Philly selects versatile big man in Gordon. He fills the need at 4 and can pose a defensive force with Nerlens Noel. He may be 6’9 but he has excellent foot speed and ability of a wing player.  In my personal opinion if Philly messes this trade everyone should be fired. 7 picks in total now I know they won’t use them off they can easily be put as trade bait for future 1st rounders in the years to come but the addition of Exum, Gordon and Noel could be the jumpstart that Philly fans need to see.

11.  Denver Nuggets- Zach Levine, UCLA

This may be the second shocker of the first round but Zach Levine has seen his portfolio rise in the past couple of weeks. He’s 6’6 with handles and has crazy bounce. He could even come off the bench as a 6th man playing PG. With the recent trade for Arron Affalo, Levine might be able to see time quicker than anticipated. Other options could be Dario Saric, Adrien Payne, Nik Stauskas or another trade.

12.  Orlando Magic- Tyler Ennis, Syracuse

After bypassing a PG with the 4th pick, they couldn’t afford to do that with the 12th pick so they select freshman sensation Tyler Ennis. Tyler Ennis may not be the fastest guy on the court but he possesses intangibles that are essential for the development of a point guard. This could very well change if Orlando goes with a PG like Smart or Exum with the 4th pick in the event that happens look for names like Adrien Payne and Dario Saric, Rodney Hood or James Young.

13. Minnesota Timberwolves- Dario Saric, Croatia

We all know Minnesota loves to draft international prospects such as Nikola Pekovic, Ricky Rubio and others so why not add another one in Dario Saric. He just signed a new deal with his team overseas which will prohibit from playing in the NBA for at least 2 years but at 6’10 with a jumpshot and handles he could be another Danilo Ganillari or Tskitivili(what a mistake Denver made that year). Nevertheless he provides great upside to a team that will need all the help it can get once Kevin Love is gone.

14. Phoenix Suns- Nik Stauskas, Michigan

What does a young team like Phoenix need? Point Guards.. Check. Big men that can shoot..check how about a shooting guard that can shoot. Enter door number one we have Nik Stausakas, 6’6 sniper that hails from Michigan but is ready to shoot the lights out of the gym. I can envision a young Petrovic (RIP) with this guy and if that happens lock up the women and children because Phoenix is making a run for it. Other options could be James Young, Zach Levine, trade or Gary Harris.

For the last pick of the draft, whoever that team is shall select Isaiah Austin. I know he can’t play competitive basketball anymore but what a gut-wrenching story. I know it’s not the end because it is the beginning of something new. We see this happen all the time like Eric LeGrand getting drafted and many others so why not end the night with a moral boost.

On that note, Cleveland Cavs you are on the clock….

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I’m taking my talents to………..

lebron james

It was all good just a year ago. Lebron wins his 2nd ring. Lebron is king of the basketball world. He is in discussion as the greatest small forward of all-time. He was on the verge of a three peat but the San Antonio Spurs said ‘I’m gonna protect this house’   As of this morning, LeBron James told the Miami Heat upper management that he is opting of his contract and will become a free agent.

Free agency went from 0 to 100 nigga real quick. Real quick whole NBA on some real shit.  LeBron was due $20.6 million this year as part of the 6 year/ $109.83 million deal he signed with the Heat.  I mean they have been talking about this all year but it was just barbershop talk; you know the drunk talk or high talk you have with your friends. But now social media has gone wild with the LeBron memes, GroupMe chats were on fire as the discussion began like we were on the set of ESPN.  The running joke is that I work for ESPN but what if i told you (morhpeus voice) that I had a phone interview back in 2009. Of course nothing turned from that but back to the man of the hour, LeBron James or as Mark Jackson would say “mama there goes that man”.  Almost half of the league as of right now will have cap space with some intriguing teams like the Lakers, Cavs, Bulls and others. Now LeBron is once again the prize fish of free agency like he was in 2010.

Before everyone starts to play GM and say that he’s coming to their team just know even though LeBron will be a free agent doesn’t mean that his career with the Heat is over. In my opinion, this is the ultimatum to GM Pat Riley either you improve the team or I’m out. The thing about ultimatums is if they don’t do anything will LeBron really leave. For the other teams in the NBA they hope he does.  Under the new bargaining agreement, Miami can offer him a 5 year deal worth about 115 million while a new team can only offer a 4 year/ 85 million deal. So that’s a difference of about 30 million, is that enough incentive for LeBron to leave or nah? If it he does leave then he’s back to rebuild a legacy mode like he was playing 2K. LeBron opting out is just allowing him to weigh his options. The media was in a frenzy when his wife sent a tweet, “We are coming home” regarding his hometown of Akron, Ohio.

Let’s face it, Dwyane Wade’s prime is coming to a close and Chris Bosh at times pulls a David Blaine and disappears from games. What’s interesting is that they both have the options to become a free agent as well. Maybe this is a scheme to opt out of their current contracts so they can sign new contracts at a discount rate so they can bring in new talent. Because if they stay with their current salaries, then Miami will be strapped for cash and won’t be able to help out the team. Other factors to consider is that Ray Allen will be 39 in a few weeks, Shane Battier retired, Mario Chalmers can leave as could Udonis Haslem and Birdman. There are a lot of pieces to this puzzle and only person can put this together; the slick hair back man known as Pat Riley.

Even though their roster is a little older the fact remains that they went to 4 straight NBA Finals and successfully won 2. That’s not a small feat by any means but teams are getting younger, teams are becoming more financially savvy and scouts are really becoming the eyes and ears of an operation. It would be a shame to see LeBron leave at such a critical time, but if Pat Riley doesn’t deliver on his word then why should he.

If LeBron does resign with the Heat it will be a 5 year deal worth about $123 million but he would be 35 when that contract is up. Would he retire after this or keep playing? Would he earn another big payday at 35? If Kobe can do it, why not LeBron. Whatever LeBron decides to do it will the first story on every news channel in the world.  Will he leave 30 million on the table or is another 5 years with the Heatles.

So where could he go?????? According to Spotrac, only five teams beside the Heat will have the cap space to offer James the maximum without making any other roster moves: Phoenix Suns, Dallas Mavericks, Utah Jazz, Philadelphia 76ers and Los Angeles Lakers. They are other teams that could get involved like the Rockets, Wizards, Cavaliers and the rest of the whole NBA but they will have to make roster cuts some tougher that others but for LeBron James anything is up for grabs.

Philadelphia won only 19 games last year but Thursday could speak volumes of what the future holds for them. They have 7 picks in Thursday’s draft including the 3rd and 10th pick which could turn into 2 instant starters like Dante Exum, Andrew Wiggins, Julius Randle, Aaron Gordon and don’t forget they also will have Nerlens Noel.  After Thursday night, Philly can be a team on the come up and could even be enticing for the King to begin a new reign of terror.

I was speaking the Steven Cook, the East Coast spokesperson for the Dallas Mavericks (just joking) and he said, why would we want him we beat him the Finals then he said, sike i’m bullshitting hell yeah bring him on so he can learn how to shoot a jumper like Dirk and with Monta Ellis and company and an underrated coach in Rick Carlisle they could be instant contenders. LeBron has stated that the Mavericks are ‘probably the reason why I am who I am today’ which  would be an instant boost to the Mavs, but it’s the task of getting out of the daunting Western Conference that poses the tougher challenge then winning the chip with all the improvements the conference plans to make. Would Cook wear a LeBron James Mavs jersey? So about those Utah Jazz…. next.

Then comes the Tinseltown Lakers with recruitment from the Laker greats starting with Magic Johnson, Jack Nicholson, Diahann Carroll and others that will try their damnest to get LeBron to come to the city that Magic built. Would Kobe be second fiddle to LeBron? Is there enough room in the stadium for both of their egos?  Will Kobe still be Kobe? Can he remain healthy after 2 major injuries? Is 35 really 35 or did he go back into the DeLorean to 2002 and bring his fro and rap album with him. Even with LeBron, I don’t see them rising above the Pacific Division especially with the improving Clippers and Warriors( with or without Kevin Love).

There is always the Houston Rockets and that crafty GM Daryl Morey who has already stated that he has deals for Jeremy Lin and Omer Asik to generate cap space for LeBron. A Houston Big 3 of LeBron, Harden and Howard would definitely bring Hakeem, Drexler and Sam Cassell out of the tunnel.

One of the most intriguing teams that could land LeBron is the Phoenix Suns. They were just one game from making the playoffs with a rookie coach in Jeff Hornacek and the emergence of Eric Bledsoe and Goran Dragic made for one of the best backcourts in the league.  They can actually offer LeBron the max with no roster moves and bring a style and flair that would make Charles Barkley say, ‘The Phoenix Suns are back’ They would be one of the most exciting teams in the league especially if they can keep Eric Bledsoe. Even if they can’t they have 3 first round picks on Thursday and 3 more the following year so this team will definitely be on the come up.  Money, money…money moneeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeey…money is what the Suns have. They have enough to sign someone for the max this year and in 2015 and with those extra picks they can land another star player.  There is so much potential in this pairing but will the media hype be too much for them? Will their expectations be so high that only method man and redman can reach it?

Of course I would love for him to come to the Wizards where the backcourt of Wall and Beal would bring all types of shine to the city or maybe they are waiting on Durant in 2016.  But if LeBron did go to the Wizards the time would be now. For some it would be best if he stayed in Miami for others it would be poetic justice to come back to the place that he calls home; the Cleveland Cavaliers. I know you are supposed to be a forgiving man but after all the backlash he received especially from the owner Dan Gilbert unless I get the chance to put them paws on him, I am not  going back to Cleveland.

This is a rendition of the Should, Could,  Dream tour. Because he SHOULD stay in Miami, he COULD go to another team and now the GM’s must DREAM on how they can get the best player in all of basketball to their team.

Until then (cues the Sportscenter theme song)..da-da-da…. da-da-da

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