September, 17, 2010
By Henry Abbott
- Most NBA players eat terribly. I guess, in that, they're like a lot of young Americans. But not Steve Nash! He gets most of his calories from fruit, vegetables and nuts. And he has had surprising NBA longevity. I can tell you that years ago, on the advice of a doctor helping me fight psoriasis, I switched to a diet almost exactly like Nash's. One of the weird things that happened was that I became way more energetic on the basketball court. Honestly, it was like a performance enhancing drug. I see that in Nash, too! He's running around all over the place all the time! That's because he's not feeling all bogged down by the food he has eaten. Anyway, Suns blogger Michael Schwartz is going to eat like Nash for a week, as an experiment, to see how it goes. I'll predict that he'll feel funny for three or four days, and then pretty good. But if he experimented with it for six weeks, he'd feel amazing.
- By the way, this is the opposite of the Nash diet.
- Tzvi Twersky of SLAM: "I’ve been on the receiving end of bigotry and ignorance. Of dirty stares. Of slurs. Of pushes. Of punches. In one form or another, most of us have been recipients. That’s why I was so proud last season. Proud of the wonderful ways fans greeted Omri Casspi. From coast to coast, arenas welcomed the rookie with cheers and applause. I wasn’t pleased because the NBA and its crowd showed a Jew respect. I was proud because they showed an outsider love. Now, in Casspi’s adopted American hometown, cracks are creeping up the still wet cement of tolerance. ... Tomorrow, on one of the most introspective holidays, I’ll spend the day at synagogue studying my faults, flaws and sins. Thousand of miles away, Omri Casspi will, too. At some point in their lives, whether they’re apprehended or not, hopefully the swastika-painting Sacramento criminals reassess themselves as well."
- International basketball never has a summer without some big contest, whether it's the World Championships, the Olympics, or the regional qualifying for those. This is probably a mistake, as there's no way the best NBA players can commit to every summer, but nevertheless don't we want the best players to be in international tournaments?
- Picking the best Timberwolves ever is not easy. Doug West, Michael Olowokandi, J.R. Rider and Chauncey Billups are in the conversation.
- Dwyane Wade and LeBron James inspire us to ask what happens when two players who drive to the hole a lot team up. Do they both keep driving as much? Is that even possible? A very smart investigation suggests that if history repeats itself, one or the other will become more perimeter oriented.
- David Roth of the Wall Street Journal's Daily Fix: "After going 17-0 on their home court during the regular season, the Storm swept through the playoffs, including a 4-0 mark at home. Their 87-84 win over the Atlanta Dream was their record seventh straight postseason victory, and a perfectly representative win for a most unusual champion. ... The Storm’s continued existence in Seattle is a product of pure, idealistic stubbornness -- you might recall that their twin NBA franchise migrated south to Oklahoma City after the 2007-08 season. The Storm’s owners refused to make the move. Two years later, Storm owners Dawn Trudeau, Lisa Brummel, Anne Levinson and Ginny Gilder are the owners of a championship team -- and the first all-female ownership group of any championship team in any sport. It’s worth noting that the Dream would’ve had the same distinction had they upset the Storm."
- Danny Ferry and Michael Jordan are both NBA executives now. But I bet they still remember this play, when they got tangled up, and Ferry connected with some elbows to Jordan's face.
- Political correctness is not alive and well in Australia.
- A prediction from the L.A. Times' Mark Medina: "Artest already tasted defeat, agony and scorn. Once he tasted Champagne in the Lakers locker room, he tasted victory, and it has made him want more. So as the 2010-2011 season gets underway, Artest will be happy to do whatever it takes to come back for seconds."
- Danny Ainge had a very tough call to make this offseason. Pay to keep the Celtics together for the long term, or start the rebuilding? He did a great job going down Path A, but Path B is tantalizing.
- Phil Jackson is turning 65. A favorite quote of his, via Forum Blue and Gold: “Like life, basketball is messy and unpredictable. It has its way with you, no matter how hard you try to control it. The trick is to experience each moment with a clear mind and open heart. When you do that, the game -- and life -- will take care of itself.”
- Marcus Camby is aware of a bigger world. Way bigger.
- Should the Kings have Samuel Dalembert shoot more? He has shown efficiency in the pick and roll.
- In picking the five best Knicks ever, you could do OK just picking all 1972 team.
- By having training camp at a military base, the Heat, it occurs to Surya Fernandez, have an opportunity to shoot a Top Gun-style introduction video.
- In defending Rodney Stuckey as an NBA point guard, Patrick Hayes of PistonPowered says you don't need a great point guard to be great: "NBA Finals point guards over the last 20 years have included names like Derek Fisher, Ron Harper, Eric Snow, Kenny Smith and John Paxson. Guys like Mark Jackson, Jason Williams and Avery Johnson were 'pure' pass-first points, although none would have been considered among the top three players on their respective Finals teams. Jameer Nelson and Tony Parker are guys who can be described as 'shoot first' sometimes. Rajon Rondo is not definable by a position because his skillset is so extremely unique. Having good point guard play isn’t the key to winning. Having a player who dominates some facet of the game, surrounded by a bunch of very good players, is the key to winning."
- Nathan Begley of Portland Roundball Society is reading the Blazers' official team website, especially the work of broadcaster Mike Barrett. How to take those all-sunshine reports?: "Barrett regales us with tales of wonder, such as Elliot Williams’ 48” vertical, a beefier LaMarcus Aldridge, a leaner Greg Oden, a trim Brandon Roy, an improved Luke Babbitt, and miniature ponies for everybody!"