Wednesday, December 20, 2006

NBA Executive of the year

This week I’ve had very little access to the internet. My brother’s apartment is surrounded by people who have passwords on their wireless networks, and I didn’t make it to coffee shops to connect more than twice. So I’ve been unable to post much. Mainly I spent the week playing video games and hanging out. My brother’s roommate Bradley and I played NCAA 2007 for a few days. I started as the coach as Northern Colorado, went to Wisconsin (accidentally), then took the job at Indiana State. After turning the Sycamores into a better team than they’d ever been—even with Larry Legend—I jumped ship to UConn, which allowed me to get my dream job at Oregon. We played until 2040, and if the game is any indication, the Ducks will be a powerhouse in basketball by the middle of this century. I also played some NBA 2K7, and turned the Blazers into the NBA champions by the 2009 season, which is what I’ve been proclaiming would happen in real life. And I did it by trading Zach and Darius for expiring deals and developing my young players. The biggest acquisitions? I drafted a small forward from Mississippi State who became the finals MVP three years in a row, and I traded for T.J. Ford. (Don’t worry, J-Lew, I only did that because the game didn’t respect Jack, but by 2010 JJ had developed enough that I didn’t renew Ford’s contract.) And of course, because my owner--a fictional owner, not Paul Allen--was most concerned with making money, I managed to cut my pay-roll and win championships, so that I was executive of the year several times in a row. I also played both Guitar Hero games, which was a lot of fun and made me feel like a rocker.

One of the few outings that my brother and I went on was to a youth basketball tournament in which two of his roommates were coaching. That would have been fun enough, but watching Stephen’s roommate Jeff coach against Kenny Smith was fantastic. I kept trying to figure out which kid was Smith’s, and I also kept trying to see if he had his championship rings on. I never figured out either. I’ll only say these two things about Kenny Smith’s team: they were shooting the lights out, and his guards could beat anyone off the dribble. It was pretty crazy to watch. I was wishing a little that I’d worn my Zach Randolph jersey to the tournament so that I could try to elicit a comment from Smith on the Blazers’ MVP.

Speaking of Portland’s MVP, he played pretty well in the team’s fourth straight win Friday night against the Clippers. I’ll be there in person to see the game against the T-Mac-less Rockets. I’m looking forwards to it, especially because it sounds like R-O-Y is as close to being a for-sure as one can get after being injured. Also, I’m more excited for that than I was before because the Oregonian reported that Randolph talks about R-O-Y ten times a day, and that he can’t wait to get Brandon back in the line-up. That adds even more credence to my brother’s theory that Portland needs to see how well the two play together for a while before they ship Randolph off for the best deal they can find. If a guy is that excited to get a player back, and especially if that guy is one that some people think only cares about himself, I think that means good things are in store when the two get the chance to pair up again. If you remember, Randolph went those three or four games in a row with 30-plus points while R-O-Y was in the lineup, and Brandon was averaging near 20 a game, so he was still getting his shots. In addition, Randolph has been playing on the move really well in the last few games, passing out of double-teams with good consistency, and generally being a mature team player (minus one bird incident). If he’s like that now, I can hardly imagine what he might be like when R-O-Y is back in the rotation.

That’s all for now, I’m writing this in LAX as I wait for my connecting flight to Oakland before I land in Portland. Hopefully I can get bumped so I can finagle a plane ticket to Chicago in my near future.

No comments: