Tag Archives: NBA

In Memory of AngryBlackAle: Holy Sh*t, It’s Celtics Season!

One of the perks of NBA Season.

Another perk of NBA season.

With the loss of our dear friend AngryBlackAle at the end of last season, both SMC and I were surprised to find out that the 17 time world champion Boston Celtics are beginning their season tonight. I’m not a hoops guy, except for the last two minutes of a close playoff game, but things seem to be looking good for the C’s this year. They have the same starting five that won a title in 2008, Rondo has developed into a premier point guard (and wants to be paid like one), and the bench is deeper than it was to start the season. Of course, the key to the whole thing, and the reason that there is Banner 18 coming in the spring, is that KG – The Eater of Souls – is back on the floor.

I'm kind of scared of him too, so it's nothing to be ashamed of.

It's O.K. I'm kinda scared of him too.

There isn’t much that you can’t say about how much Kevin Garnett means to the Celtics. Even with Big Baby (who apparently broke his thumb while sticking it up some dudes butthole) playing very well in the playoffs (and shoving twelve-year-old kids around), the C’s were missing something with KG out of the lineup due to a bad knee. It was the intensity. Paul Pierce may be the Captain, Ray Allen may be the dagger, and Rondo may be the speed, but it’s KG that scares the crap out of everybody on the other team. And not because of his basketball skills, because he’s likely to rip somebody’s arm out of the socket and beat a ref to death with it over a bad call.

Either there's a party going on, or 'Sheed's gotta do his shirt laundry.

Either there's a party goin' on, or 'Sheed's gotta do his shirt laundry.

My favorite part of the new season is seeing Rasheed Wallace in green (it’s super lame that the Cavs are wearing red on opening night so that we can’t wear green). He’s a great player, sure, and he looks like Wogga Bear (I’ve never seen them in the same room, or watched ‘Sheed play with Wogga Bear, so I cannot confirm that they are, in fact, different people), but he likes pot, so we like him. ‘Sheed, and his weird bald spot, along with Marquis Daniels, Big Baby, Candace Parker (I mean Shelden Williams) and Eddie House, make the C’s bench at the start of the season the best that it has been in the new big three era. Plus, ‘Sheed loves pot.

ESPN and SI have three of their 20-odd “experts” picking the Celtics to win the title, but far more of them have  the Cavs (a.k.a. Shaq, Lebron and whatever 9 guys they can find behind the home depot that day) or the Lakers. Me, I think all those guys who chose other people should just be on the look out for a 6’12” guy wearing a green number 5 jersey hunting them down for doubting him.

Of course, this means that the C’s are going to lose 60 games (hello, whoever breaks out of college and becomes the first pick in 2010).

Go Celts, Go Sox.

110 Days.

Done.

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Red Sox Lose to Angels in the Playoffs: The World is Coming to an End.

That was not fun. In the spirit of the day, here is an old favorite which will hopefully put the kick ass back into the Sox, B’s and Fred Taylor’s ankle.

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With a new year at our doorstep, it is time to give our teams the momentum they need by telling them how bad 2009 will actually be for them. Last year, at the start of 2008, Dan “The Curly Haired Boyfriend (where did this nickname come from? He has curly hair, but I’m pretty sure he isn’t anyone’s boyfriend)” Shaughnessy decided to tell us how great the year was going to be. He wrote out each of the predictions in the form of the headlines, predicting the greatest possible outcome for the local sports teams (except the Bruins). Of course, everything went exactly opposite of what Dan, in his lame attempt at humor said, sometimes in the most painful way (see: SuperBowl XLII). The 35 game NFL winning streak, Ellsbury’s amazing season (and another World Series Title with a happy Left Fielder), the complete disappearance of the Boston Bruins, and Jim Rice’s election into the HOF are among the things that Shaughnessy jinxed us out of, though he did get the C’s title right (a drunken lemur could have gotten that one right).

If that’s how it’s gonna be, we will do our own lame predictions for the year ahead. So, as I watch the Ravens play (and beat) the goddamn Dolphins in the playoffs, I will channel the spirit of Will McDonough (the legendary Globe sportswriter who called Clemens a “Texas Con Man” 20 years before the Mitchell report) and Reverse Cheer our boys to victory in 2009.

THE BOSTON RED SOX will miss the big bat in the middle their lineup, as “Big Floppy” David Ortiz hits only three homeruns and Kevin Youkilis’ beard becomes sentient and causes him to tear an ACL in a bizarre mid season attack on Mike Lowell. The pitching staff does well enough, but with Dice-K leaving every game after throwing 120 pitches in three scoreless innings and Tim Wakefield striking out 300 (all of whom reached first on passed balls) it will be hard to win with only 0.78 runs of support per game. 12 wins will not be enough to make the playoffs. The Yankees, on the other hand, win 120 games and sweep the playoffs to win the Series. CC Sabathia is going to lose 40 lbs and win 30 games and Mark “Sexi Texi” Teixeira will become the first man since Yaz in ’67 to win the triple crown with 75 HR, 193 RBI and a .410 BA. Tony Massaroti  will come out of hibernation in November, be told the news and instantly commit Hari-Kari. Jim Rice will miss the Hall of Fame by one vote and refuse to talk to the media, even in his job at NESN, ever again. I will shit my pants, twice.

THE NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS will allow Matt Cassel to go in free agency, following reports that Tom Brady’s knee is 100% on track to be ready for training camp. These reports will turn out to be wrong as Brady is killed on the first day of camp, when his knee collapses, stabbing his own tibia through his abdomen. It's gonna hurtKevin O’Connell will then inherit the mantle of quarterback and lead the Patriots to an 11-5 record, but miss the playoffs again due to the fact that the Dolphins could not beat the Matt Cassel and Josh McDaniels led Jets. The Jets will go on to beat the Browns, who are rebuilt by Pioli and Mangini, in the AFC Championship, before losing the Superbowl to Brett Favre and the Minnesota Vikings. StartMattCassel will change his name to WelkersFluffer (if you don’t know what that means I ain’t gonna tell you).

THE BOSTON CELTICS will never recover from the Christmas day loss to the Lakers, posting the opposite record (3-27) in the next thirty games. Get out the Paper BagsRay Allen’s ankles will explode, impaling both Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce with pieces of bone. Garnett will laugh off the injury, keep playing and bleed to death while dunking on Zydrunas Ilgauskas.Pierce will sit down for two months and come back just in time to lead the Celtics to the eighth seed in the east, but get swept in the first round by the Cavaliers and Ilgauskas, who absorbed the power of KG, Highlander style, when the Big Ticket died. Rajon Rondo will retire, figuring that he will never have as good a team to distribute the ball to, and Kendrick Perkins will eat himself out of the league in one afternoon at Sizzler. AngryBlackAle will continue to be angry.

THE BOSTON BRUINS will stop playing like it’s the last half of 2008, and start playing like it’s the first half of 2005, when they were locked out.Communism WinsClaude Julien will start acting like the French guy who he stole the name from and start surrendering at the start of every game. Tim Thomas and Manny Fernandez will go on strike after getting snubbed from the All Star ballot, and Zdeno Chara will hit his head on the Jumbotron, knocking him out for the month of March. The City of Boston will finally acknowledge that the Bruins are really, really good, just in time for them to lose 12 straight games in shootouts. The Montreal Canadiens will win the Stanley Cup and force everone in America to start speaking French. This will cause us to surrender to China, and the Communists will win.

IN OTHER NEWS, Plaxico Burress will shoot off the tip of his penis while carrying a gun in his banana hammock on vacation in Mexico (Thanks Catfish). Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds will both be convicted of perjury and be sentenced to spend the next four years injecting each other in the butt. Heath Ledger will be snubbed at the Oscars and come back from the dead to appear at the show and yell at those who didn’t vote for him (Best. Movie. Ever.) Rickey Henderson will announce at his Hall of Fame induction that he wants to play this season, and will then sign a deal with the Marlins. The owners of Anheuser-Busch will realize that, by selling their company to Belgians, they have lost any claim on the title of “The Great American Lager” and will stop airing that commercial where they almost mention this site (“Some guy in Boston told me to get out of his yard“) in connection with their shitty beer.

39 days.

Done.

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Things can only go up.

Go Sox.

Done.

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Off Day Brainfarts, and the Best Sports Page in the World.

BrainfartsSome things that spilled out of my head while preparing to yell “Bitch Tits” for four straight hours (I know I said that yesterday, but I really want to get people to chant it tomorrow night) :

How many times has Orsillo turned to Eck during a commercial and said “What the f#$% is wrong with you?” He must be getting more ready to have Remy back every day, after the Rance Whoeverhtehellhewas debacle, getting beaten with Eck’s hair and the occasional appearances of the holy Dave Roberts, it’s time for us all to settle down and get back to the routine. Please come back Rem-Dawg, I never thought I’d miss your genius this much.

The Penis Game will always be fun.

I can’t remember a year when I have been less interested in the  NBA finals. The problem is that I don’t feel compelled by anyone playing in them. Sure, Kobe’s quest to win without Shaq is a storyline, but the guy is a douche. I even tried to watch the Spike Lee special and came out of it thinking that he was even more of a cock than I did before. The contrived interactions with his teammates (most of whom he has never spoken to before) seem as awkward as Stewie trying to talk to Meg for the first time. If Lebron were in it, like David Stern promised, I’d be interested if only for the fact that Lebron is at least as cool as Justin Timberlake, and he’s 6’9″. Dwight Howard doesn’t have the presence to take the finals like Shaq did, and can’t take a game over on his own like Kobe and Lebron. It’s just a buzzing at the back of my head which will be gone in a week, and is taking up too much of my Sportscenter time now.

Kitty Kannon is the best iPhone App Ever.

daisuke_matsuzakaIt’s coming time that Daisuke Matsuzaka starts to earn the $100 million that the Sox have invested in him (the posting fee has to count). He was 18-3 last season but only threw 169 innings and hasn’t been able to stay past 5-2/3 this season. The WBC can be blamed to a degree (and he needs to realize that his AL season is more important), but in many ways it’s a stubborn lack of ability to adapt that has held him back. In the Majors the hitters are too disciplined and too good to try and nibble around. If he were to start going after hitters more and stop worrying about giving up his honor by allowing a hit or two he might turn into a Major League pitcher.

I don’t like Sidney Crosby, and Evgeni Malkin is only O.K., but I still hope they beat the Red Wings (for whom I have an irrational hatred).

Even David Ortiz thinks that Jason Bay is the shit.

If you were as lucky as I was and got to grow up reading the Best Sports Page in the world, then you’ll love this article from Sports Illustrated about the glory days of the Boston Globe.

I Effing hate off days.

Go Sox.

Done.

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The Big 3

Let’s go Celtics

Here we go Cs. Dont freakin disapoint us like the god damn Bruins.

Here we go C's. Don't freakin disappoint us like the god damn Bruins.

SMC

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Too Little Too Late

Magic Celtics BasketballOn the heels of another epic showdown against the Bulls, we prevail and now face the Orlando Magic and the new defensive player of the year.   The first quarter was pretty even with Dwight Howard being held scoreless and Stephon Marbury finally coming out of his shell a bit and carried us through.  Only problem was he’s Stephon Marbury and he doesn’t know when to calm it down and distribute as well as score, it’s usually one or the other.  Which of course led to Orlando absolutely torching the C’s in the second quarter.  Which led to almost a 30 point lead in the early parts of the third quarter, when Rondo single-handedly brought the C’s back with his aggressive play.  There was good and bad in this game, first the atrocious play of Rondo, Pierce and Allen.  Second the fact that Orlando messed up big time by letting the C’s back in with their live and die shooting efforts.  For once Charles Barkley said something profound, “Sometimes when you win a game, you lose a game.”  The magic have the win on paper to the tune of 95-90, but lost a great amount of momentum to the C’s who know now that this teams bite isn’t as fierce as it’s bark.  Stay tuned for more analysis and breakdown of key strategies to win.  I have a feeling this series won’t be nearly as epic but much more important.

ABA

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Too Close for Comfort: Jesus Shuttlesworth does it again

Bulls Celtics BasketballAfter a couple of pensive days waiting to see how the defending champs would respond to a game 1 loss, the C’s seem to have found their playoff legs.  It took a good old fashioned 105-103 beating by the young Bulls team (a la Atlanta Hawks from a season ago) for the Celtics to wake up and smell the urgency.  While by no means a pretty win Monday night, it would have to do as long as it means taking that momentum into Chicago.

Saturday afternoon was certainly forgettable.  For a team with as much veteran presence as the Celtics have, it seemed like only Rajon Rondo, one of the youngest and newest made the statement that he came to play.  Pierce and Allen combined didn’t even crack double digits in the first half.  The highlight of course was the battle of two of the leagues premier guards, and what an afternoon it was for both of them.  Head to head and back and forth all game testing each others mettle, making impossible shots routine and both putting their respective teams on their back.  Although Rose had the bigger scoring night (36 points) in his post season debut, Rondo (29 points) held his with his own team high in scoring.  More impressive is the fact that Rondo hasn’t been groomed to be a scorer, but more of a play-maker.  His aggressiveness being rewarded with unfettered access to the interior realms of the Bulls defense.  It’s funny how even 18-foot jump-shots have a chance of falling when you actually take them.

Oh Jesus Shuttlesworth, 4 points aint gonna cut it.

Oh Jesus Shuttlesworth, 4 points aint gonna cut it.

Unfortunately the remaining two of the Big Three didn’t come to play with the same competitive fire.  Ray was frustrated all night by double teams he couldn’t shake, and contested shots that just wouldn’t fall, leaving the all-star with a paltry 4 point total in the first game of the playoffs at home.  While Allen struggled Pierce, the floor general ended with 23 hard fought points of his own, that just weren’t enough.  The crushing blow came with two seconds left.  Pierce could of stolen the game with a make from the charity stripe, but missed his second of two free throws sending the game into overtime.  There Tyrus Thomas dominated and the Bulls came away with the win.

After the shock and embarrassment settled in and game 2 was finally underway, the Celtics new that if they lost two in a row, it would be near impossible to reign the beast back in.  Adjustments were made and from the outset it was clear the C’s wouldn’t have a rookie come into their house and tear it to shreds two games in a row.  Rose got in early foul trouble and was forced to ride pine.  Stepping into his place was Ben Gordon, UConn alum and scorer extraordinaire.  “Sugar” Ray Allen had only 2 points in the first half, and things wouldn’t change until halftime when Doc asked for a volunteer.  Ray stepped up to the plate knowing that a fellow Husky would surely steal the show if he didn’t.  The second half was just a stage for Gordon and Allen, the battle turning into a anything y0u can do I can do better contest.  Right down to the last second, when Ray came off a Glen Davis screen to hit the game winning three pointer.  Both players had monster games, Gordon with a game high 42 points, and Allen with a total of 30 but those last three made all the difference and made up for the difference.  As spectacular a performance as Allen put on, it didn’t come

Head to head, just like old times.

Head to head, just like old times.

cheap.  Leon Powe left the game with a sprained left knee and would not return, again leaving a large hole in the lineup inside the paint.  The difference-maker again was Rondo, who came to play again with his first triple-double of the playoffs.  Though he was all-important in completing the win, he also went down with an ankle injury but returned and will likely suck it up and get treatment for the rest of the playoffs.  Boston 118, Bulls 115.

With the series tied 1-1, the C’s need to figure out what exactly is missing (other than a whole bunch of injured players) and quickly.  Is it the sense of urgency and importance of every possession, or are they just to depleted for the long haul?  Thursday night we’ll all find out together.   Stay tuned, 8 pm on TNT.

ABA

P.S.  Leon Powe Torn ACL and Muniscus, out for season.  Bad to worse…

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The Longest Weekend of the Year

been-waiting-3-hourz-for-a-high-fiveHere it is. Saturday. Noonish.

The start of the longest weekend of the year.

It’s not long because there are three hours added because of some weird quirk in the time space continuum, or because there is nothing going on, or because it’s so cold and we can’t leave the house for fear of the ice building up on our Pornstaches. It’s long because of the waiting.

While we all know that baseball is a game of anticipation there are really some points where it gets to you. After 5 months of counting days, watching meaningless baseball games (and no matter how much I want it to be legit, you have to count the WBC as meaningless until all of the best players are actually in it) and suffering through all of those other sports trying to pretend that they are a religion like baseball is, it’s actually time to start playing. But not until Monday.

Just kidding, they'll never make the playoffs (curse of Seattle).

Just kidding, they'll never make the playoffs (curse of Seattle).

That leaves us with two days of suffering.  We’ve got the last three games of the NCAA tournament, when March Madness is over and four of the about ten teams that we knew were going to be there are in the Final Four. There are no upsets at this point, and there haven’t been any since eighth seeded ‘Nova won it all in 85. Come to think of it, only a handful of teams that were seeded five or lower have even made the final four since then, highlighted by the appearances of 11 seeds LSU in 86, and George Mason in ’06, and 2000 when there were two 8th seeds.

There is also the dregs of the NBA season, as crappy teams that often have below .500 records line up to get shitkicked by Lebron and Kobe in the first round. The same thing is happening in the NHL, though there is a better chance for those eight seeds to actually make a dent.

The point is that the fact that 16 of the 29 NBA and 16 of the 30 NHL teams make the playoffs basically eliminates the whole idea of a pennant race. Where as the Sox winning the Division is a reason for people all over New England to cover themselves in booze and do other celebratory things, we couldn’t even get ABA to care when the C’s clinched the Atlantic this spring. It takes the drama out of the final games for the best teams, and leaves it for the ones with no shot at a title. Baseball, on the other hand,has it’s most excitement in the last few weeks of the regular season and every team that makes that tournament has a serious shot to win a title.

perseveranceNow we just have to wait. There are approximately 48 hours left until the new year begins (thats when we celebrate here at the Ballpark). Persevere. If you need a fix, there is a Sox game on right now on MLB Network, the Phillies and Braves kick the whole thing off on Sunday night at 8, and of course, you can watch those two games basketball games tonight, which may be exciting, but lack the Madness.

We’ll make it.

Go Sox.

Done

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