Wednesday, April 25, 2007

NBA Playoffs

This is a public service announcement.

If you are at all a basketball fan, you must watch Steve Nash. He doesn't have the electrifying athleticism of a Steve Francis, but the things he can do will take your breath away. He is just great at: decision making, passing, shooting, free throws, post moves, and acrobatic layups. What I think is most unique though is his ability to create. Any idiot can throw alley-oops to Amare Stoudamire, it's true, but Nash can find the open man better than anyone in the league. As one of the commentators last night said, he plays behind the basket as Gretzky did behind the goal. Then he'll decide he needs to carry the scoring load for a while and he'll sink two or three shots in a row. He's Magic Johnson one minute and a high-percentage Allen Iverson the next. He's going to go down as one of the greatest of all time and we get to watch him in his prime.

As a bonus, if you watch the rest of their series against the Lakers you have a chance at seeing Kobe Bryant become Michael Jordan for a half or even a whole game. Kobe was spectacular -- at least as good as Jordan -- during the first half of game one, but without a supporting cast, he can't maintain it. Even Jordan wasn't Jordan without Scottie Pippen.


Ezzie said...

...which I think explains why Kobe isn't as great. He's an amazing player, and carries his team to close wins against bad teams, but he simply can't beat the good ones. When you run off your greatest asset (Shaq) you should lose respect for poor decision-making.

I also don't see why Lamar Odom can't function as another Pippen. His numbers on his own are better than Pippen's were without MJ.

Finally, it just shows how good Lebron James is. Sure, he has Z, Hughes, Gooden, et al - but none come close to a Pippen-like level... and yet he carries the team so far. And he's only 22 freaking years old - scary.

Jewish Atheist said...

I also don't see why Lamar Odom can't function as another Pippen

Pippen averaged about 6 more points and 5 more assists plus he basically ran the offense as point-forward. Odom has more rebounds, but the Bulls had Horace Grant or Dennis Rodman for that sort of thing, Rodman averaging 5 or 6 more rebounds than Odom during the second three championship years. The Bulls also had money 3pt shooters (Paxon, Kerr) to kick to.

Jewish Atheist said...

Finally, it just shows how good Lebron James is.

I agree with that. Freakish size and speed beat the ability to shoot turnaround jumpers while double-teamed any day.

dbackdad said...

In the first half of gm 2 between the Suns and Lakers, Nash had 11 assists and zero turnovers. That's right ... zero. There were 3 games this year where he actually registered 15 assists without comitting a turnover. Seeing every Suns game like I do doesn't lessen my absolute amazement at his skills.

Wandering Coyote said...

And he's Canadian!

Alex said...


Please consider writing news pieces or an op-ed for Jewrusalem: Israeli Uncensored News. We strive to present different views and opinions while rejecting political correctness. Ideally, we try to make the news "smart and funny." Thus, your input is very welcome.


foilwoman said...

Well, here's my question for you (since I know bupkis about basketball): does watching him play make you believe in a god? If so, then we know he's really, really good.

reconstructionist said...

can you do us another public service and post the TV showtimes for the Lakers-Suns series?
Under pressure from my wife, I've limited myself to watching only one series (at this stage) and I fully concur that out of all the on-going match-ups -- this one's de best.

Jewish Atheist said...

1. Sun, Apr 22 – Phoenix 95, LA Lakers 87
2. Tue, Apr 24 – Phoenix 126, LA Lakers 98
3. Thu, Apr 26 – at LA Lakers, 10:30 pm EDT (TNT, RNET)
4. Sun, Apr 29 – at LA Lakers, 3:30 pm EDT (ABC)
5.* Wed, May 2 – at Phoenix
6.* Fri, May 4 – at LA Lakers
7.* Sun, May 6 – at Phoenix

asher said...

It always amazed me how any man over the age of 16 could actually care about "professional" sports. Baseball seems to have become a "sport" of millionaires on steriods playing a child's game that costs $45 a seat to watch. (not to mention the $12 hotdogs)
But basketball is generally only interesting during the last 20 seconds of the games; the only ones that count.

Unless, of course, you are betting on the outcome. But who has any interest in that?

tikkunger said...

This is off topic but i thought that you and some the other readers might like this.

Humanists Inaugurate a “Day of Reason”
Fred Edwards, Director of Communications, American Humanist Association

The “Day of Reason,” launched in 2002, is a counterpoint to the National “Day of Prayer” declared by the President every year. It celebrates, as the name implies, human reason and the scientific method. Humanists celebrate it in a variety of ways, including blood drives, because they understand the need to express human compassion as a central part of their ethic.

Edwards says that Humanists work with many liberal religious people on shared causes, and they recognize that these people see faith and reason as compatible. But Humanists per se see the two as philosophically incompatible. Humanism, Edwards says, is a growing philosophical tradition.

you can listen here<

Jewish Atheist said...


It always cracks me up how you can disagree with everything I post. Regarding basketball, the games are definitely too long, at least in the regular season, but baskets in the first 20 seconds are worth just as many points as those in the last.

"Rich Perkins" said...

Asher - Forget about all of JA's posts, THAT is true heresy to knock sports :)

JA - the problem is that, in basketball, scoring is so watered down that the game is only exciting in the 4th quarter.

Hockey playoffs are probably some of the most exciting games. I don't watch hockey much all year, but i love the playoffs.

Jack's Shack said...

Lebron plays in a much weaker division. The east is nothing compared to the west.

Getting into the playoffs is far easier there then it is in the west.

Odom is a nice guy but he lacks the killer instinct needed to make him into a great player.

So much talent and so inconsistent.

Nephtuli said...

Pippen is a sure-fire Hall of Famer, who was a much better player in his prime than Odom. Of course the Bulls were so unbelievable because of Jordan, but don't forget that they did pretty well in 94. Kobe doesn't have anything like that type of supporting cast (of course Jordan played defense at a much higher level, which helped his team win more games).

Lebron plays in a much weaker conference, so it's really hard to compare. I'd take Kobe right now over Lebron.

asher said...


Sorry you take it that way. I guess that's how liberal tolerate debate.

Anyway, why don't you handicapp the recent democract candidate debate?

Jack's Shack said...

It always amazed me how any man over the age of 16 could actually care about "professional" sports.

It is your loss.

Jewish Atheist said...

Anyway, why don't you handicapp the recent democract candidate debate?

Didn't watch it.