Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Fictional Basketball Trade of the Day: The T'wolves Need A Shooting Guard

Yesterday, the Star Tribune (Twin Cities, Minnesota) posted an article about how the Timberwolves really, truly, desperately need a point guard (link here). Jim Souhan, the author, was trying to make a case that Wayne Ellington, Wes Johnson, and Martell Webster need to step up. One of them, Souhan wrote, needs to solidify himself as the starting shooting guard. They obviously can't start both Ricky Rubio and Luke Ridnour in the backcourt - those guys are both in the neighborhood of 6'2", 175 pounds. If one of them is left to guard Kobe Bryant (6'6", 205 pounds, possibly the most talented player in the NBA, definitely the most ferocious), bad things are going to happen to Minnesota. Take, for example, the stat line from the MIN-LAL matchup:

K. Bryant: 35 points, 14-29 FG, 5-9 3FG, 14 rebounds, 38.8 JPoint

I could put up those numbers too, if I was primarily matched up an eighth grader.

So the next logical step would be for one of the taller guys to get the start at 2-guard, right? There's three main options (with season stats, in order of how many minutes per game they average):

Wesley Johnson (6'7"): 22.3 minutes, 5.9 points, 3.0 rebounds, 0.9 assists, 36.8% FG, 23.6% 3FG, 60% FT, 23.8 JPoint
Wayne Ellington (6'4"): 21.2 minutes, 6.7 points, 1.8 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 40.7% FG, 35.9% 3FG, 78% FT, 31.2 JPoint
Martell Webster (6'7"): 17.0 minutes, 6.7 points, 3.3 rebounds, 0.3 assists, 36.4% FG, 37.5% 3FG, 33% FT, 28.5 JPoint

The only way to analyze that is to say that Minnesota has three low-end-of-average options are shooting guard. Johnson was the #4 overall draft pick and it's safe to say that he has not performed the way a lottery pick is expected to. Ellington is their best offensive option (usually) but he's terribly inconsistent and he gives up height to the other two - and to much of the league. Webster was the guy that Souhan called on to step up and be Minnesota's backcourt savior. Personally, I just don't see either of these three guys filling the role well enough for Kevin Love to lead them to a whole lot of success. But the good news is I LOVE THE NBA TRADE MACHINE (and the T'wolves) so I'm going to work some wizardry and find a 2-guard for David Kahn to trade for.

Monday, January 30, 2012

T'wolves Win, Beasley Sets JPoint Record

Minnesota beat the Houston Rockets tonight, 120-108. Coming into this game, Minny had been scoring an average of 95 points per game. But, as you know, any team can score more points if the just take better shots.

It's hard to lose a game when your team combines for a JPoint of 47.0 overall. That's very, very, VERY good. Let's look at some of the players who took the most shots:

Nikola Pekovic, C, MIN: 8 points, 4-6 FG, 7 rebounds, 41.4 JPoint
Ricky Rubio, PG, MIN: 18 points, 2-3 FG, 4-4 FT, 11 assists, 8 rebounds, 57.0 JPoint
Kevin Love, PF, MIN: 29 points, 10-15 FG, 7-8 FT, 7 rebounds, 57.2 JPoint

The only player who took a significant amount of shots and hurt the team:

Luke Ridnour, PG, MIN: 11 points, 5-11 FG, 0-3 3FG, 5 assists, 4 rebounds, 23.3 JPoint

But that was balanced out by this next line:

Team TOPH Week 5

This was for sure a wild week for Team TOPH.  It was clearly not my best week, logging over 100 minutes more than the opponent and only winning 5-3.  But, a win's a win and at this point I'll take it, giving me some momentum for next week when the real changes take place.

It was a busy, busy week for the GM.  It took three days of negotiating, but a trade was pulled off in the end, and I think I'm going to like it.

Blockbuster Trade in Starzz02:
Team Players Receives: David Lee, Russell Westbrook, and Danilo Gallinari
Team TOPH Receives: Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love, and Jason Terry

I'm set with rebounds, but I needed more 3's.  Between Love and Terry, I should be alright.  Everything else was essentially a wash.  Plus, I needed to do something.  Things weren't going well, the mood in the locker room was pretty crappy, and a shakeup was certainly in order.  We'll see how it works out.

Weekly Transactions:
- Trade Mentioned Above
- Added Leandro Barbosa, Dropped Anthony Morrow
- Added O.J. Mayo, Dropped Leandro Barbosa
- Added Luke Ridnour, Dropped Eric Gordon (Worst $29 I've Ever Spent)
- Added Jodie Meeks, Dropped Luke Ridnour
- Added Jordan Farmar, Dropped Jodie Meeks

It really was a busy week.  Had to piece together some form of a team.

Week: 5-3
Season: 16-23-1 (Fifth Place in Western Conference, Seventh Place in League)
17.5 Games Back of First in Conference, 6 Games Back of a Playoff Spot

Some Interesting Super Bowl Betting Lines

Bill Barnwell posted this over on Grantland this morning (link here) but I just wanted to show you some interesting lines. Keep in mind that these are all legitimate lines, either from the Las Vegas Hotel or Bovada. Combined, they have like 500 lines to bet on just for this one game but I'm going to give you the five best. And keep in mind, "best" can mean whatever I want it to mean because I am a blogger.

Quick note on how betting works: a +150 means you win $150 in addition to the $100 you spent. A -150 means you need to spend $150 to win $100 - but you also get your original $150 back. I'm pretty sure that's how it works.  

5. Will Kelly Clarkson's stomach be bare when she sings the national anthem?
Yes (+300)
Let's just get this one out of the way. It's funny when you consider that this is what Kelly Clarkson used to look like:
...and this is what she looks like now:

The logical thing to do would be to hope that she doesn't bare her stomach. For her sake and for America's. Game over on the betting side. But I do have this one question for all my Kelly Clarkson fans: does her website (and her fan sites too, I guess) use images of her from when she was hot or images of what she looks like now? 

4. Who will have more?
Brandon Jacobs Touchdowns (-300)
Wayne Rooney Goals vs. Chelsea (Feb. 5) (+250)

The JPoint Champion Crown Changes Hands

This time, it's a point guard:

Jeff Teague, of the Atlanta Hawks

Teague led the Hawks with 24 points in a win over the lowly Hornets last night. Teague's stat line:

24 points, 9-11 FG, 4-4 3FG, 2-2 FT, 4 assists, 1 rebound, steal

71.7 JPoint

So there you have it. Teague led the Hawks to a gritty win (Teague was really the only guy who played well) by taking good shots - and he also led the team in assists (with 4, just to show you how poor a game it really way). He's the first player to ever (officially) break a 70 JPoint. Granted, I haven't really checked every player and I don't count guys who take less than like 7-8 shots. In time, the qualifications for the crown will change. But for now, it's Teague. Congratulations.

Previous champions:
Kevin Love, PF, MIN (January 23) (68.8)
Deividas Dulkys, G, FSU (January 14) (68.3)

Jay Hawks Update - Week 5

I really don't even know what to tell you. We're killing it. Another 100 point week for Deron Williams. Almost got a 50-50 out of Tyson Chandler. I mean Ray Allen didn't even attempt a free throw and my boys still shot 80%. Unbeatable, I'd say.

Week 5: 7-1-0 (Expect anything less?)
Season: 34-6-0 (First place overall)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

If Pau Gasol Wants A Trade, I'll Give Him A Trade!

Pau Gasol has made it really clear that he doesn't like his role on the Lakers this season. He doesn't get enough shots, and the shots he does get are long range. There are two problems for Pau staying in LA: Kobe takes a million shots and Andrew Bynum gets the majority of the Lakers' low-post touches. Pau is left playing facilitator at the elbow or the perimeter. And while the facilitator role has allowed Pau to get a lot of assists, he obviously doesn't follow the same mentality of Ricky Rubio (the classic Magic Johnson "an assist makes two guys happy" quote) toward passing. He wants the ball down low, and he's upset that his team isn't using him to the best of his ability - and after all, he is one of the best low post players in the NBA.

Rumors are swirling that Pau wants a trade to improve his situation. But the Lakers are in a very good spot with this possible development. If you read JA Adande's post on ESPN.com today (link here) he listed several problems with the Lakers so far this season:

  • They haven't had enough time to mesh with their new teammates. 
  • They haven't had enough time to learn new coach Mike Brown's system.
  • They have struggled to score when anyone besides Kobe has the ball.
  • Their 3-point shooting is the worst in the league.
  • They don't score a lot of fastbreak points.
  • They're average.
  • They're boring. 
  • They have inconsistent point guard play. 
  • They don't get easy shots from close range. This is mainly because...
  • Nobody but Kobe has the ability to create their own shot. 
  • They don't get steals and thus don't get easy transition layups. 
  • They are old. 

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Why Chicago Can't Afford For Luol Deng To Be Out "A While"

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau is reporting that Luol Deng has a torn wrist ligament and is going to be out for (and I quote) "a while".

Bulls fans: hope that "a while" does not mean a long time and that Deng can avoid season-ending surgery. It could be fatal. It's fair to say that Deng is the Bulls' second-best player, behind Derrick Rose. He contributes on both ends in ways that his replacements (rookie Jimmy Butler or one of the Ronnie Brewer/Kyle Korver shooting guard duo) simply can't.

When the Bulls play the Heat, Deng guards either Dwyane Wade or Lebron James. When they play the Lakers, he guards Kobe Bryant. Kevin Durant. Andre Iguodala. Rudy Gay. Paul Pierce. Joe Johnson. See where this is going? He guards the other team's best player, and with his size and length, he usually shuts them down pretty well. He fills the defensive stopper role popularized most recently by Ron Artest and Shawn Marion.

Check Out Your New JPoint Champion

And it might be a more familiar face than the Lithuanian (or whatever) that previously held the crown:

Minnesota lost tonight (107-92 to Houston), but it was not Kevin Love's fault. That blame falls on a combination of Rubio, Milicic, Williams, and Ellington.

That's irrelevant.

Kevin Love made history tonight, posting the most efficient night in recent memory. And actually, according to the Bullets Blog records, ever.

K. Love, PF, MIN: 39 points, 12 rebounds, 13/19 FG, 5/5 3FG, 8/10 FT, 68.8 JPoint

68.8. Wow. I'd love to see Coach Adelman give him 30-35 field goal attempts and see if he could put up 82 points. See what all of Kobe's fans have to say about that one.

The JPoint crown goes to the most well-rounded player in the NBA, Minnesota's Kevin Love.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Team TOPH Week 4 - Battle of the Blog

It's really hard to win when you log almost 300 fewer minutes than your opponent.  Tim Duncan missed a game, and Eric Gordon continues to be the biggest waste of $29 as he hasn't played in over two weeks.  I have nothing else to say, but I believe in my team.  Things may look bleak, but we're going to make the playoffs.

Weekly Transactions: Dropped Jamal Crawford, Added Anthony Morrow

Week: 1-7
Season: 11-20-1 (Fifth Place in Western Conference, Eighth Place in League)
15.5 Games Back of First in Conference, 5.5 Games Back of a Playoff Spot

Jay Hawks Week 4 - The Battle of the Blog

..And in the most lopsided, overhyped matchup of the starzz fantasy basketball season so far, I kicked the shit out of Team Toph. Everyone doing exactly what they need to be doing. Centers getting blocks. Forward getting rebounds. Guards assisting. Scorers scoring. Ricky Rubio continuing to be my favorite player in the history of the NBA despite shooting 24.4% from the field. I'm willing to overlook that because the rest of his stats are stellar. Ray Allen. Poor Chris never had a chance.

Week 4: 7-1-0
Season: 27-5-0 (First Place Overall)

The Recent Emergence of the Villanova Wildcats

I have a confession to make. I've been a very poor member of the Nova Nation this college basketball season. I don't have any excuses to make. Villanova has just been having a bad year and I opted not to spend a lot of my time supporting them after we almost lost to La Salle. La Salle. We got taken to overtime by La Salle. The little I have watched generally consists of sloppy, unorganized offense and normal, sub-par Villanova defense. It's hard to watch.

Don't look now, but the Wildcats are on a bit of a hot streak (by this season's standards). Back-to-back wins against Seton Hall (now 15-4, 4-3) and Louisville (now 15-5, 3-4) have the Nationers feeling better about this season than we've felt since we got blown out by Saint Louis back in November.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Don't Sleep on the Pacers

Somehow, the Indiana Pacers are 9-4 this year.

That doesn't make any sense to a casual basketball fan. I mean, ask anyone on the street "who is the Pacers best player?" and they might say "uhhhh...is Reggie Miller still on the team?" or, you might get a blank stare, or possibly even a slap, depending on the person. Some would say Danny Granger, simply because he is the one recognizable name on the roster.

I doubt any passionate basketball casual fan can say much more about the Pacers than Danny Granger is one of the high volume shooter/scorer guys who puts up big numbers, because he puts up a lot of shots. In fact, they might argue, it is because of Danny Granger's inefficiency that the Pacers are usually in the bottom half of the Eastern Conference.

Which brings us to this year. The Indiana Pacers are 9-4.

Any ESPN analyst will look at the roster, look at the numbers and say "this team won't survive long in the playoffs." And they may be right. After all, despite giving up only 89.2 points per game, fourth best in the league, their average margin of victory is a paltry 3.6 points, as they score only 92.8. Sure they're winning the close games now, but what will happen come playoff time?

I don't see it that way, however.

This team is winning in spite of its two best players, who have gotten off to slow starts. I believe Danny Granger is a solid player, not a star, but definitely the best player on his team. His career scoring average is 18.1 ppg, along with 5 rpg and 2.3 apg. His numbers this year are 15.3 ppg, 1.4 apg and 4.4 rpg. Those number will come up, I believe.

Also, free agent signee David West, who was a consistent 17-8 guy for his former team, the New Orleans Hornets, is currently putting up 11.1 points and 6.7 rebounds, and coaches attest that to learning his new offense. Not to mention, the massive roadblock that exists in the Pacers frontcourt (Tyler Hansbrough, Roy Hibbert and Granger all take minutes and shots away from him) has prevented him from blossoming thus far.

Those two players are capable of much more than what they are showing. And I firmly believe that the remainder of their starting five, PG Darren Collison, SG George Hill and center Hibbert are all exceptional role players who can help the two best players thrive.

This team has 8 total players above a Player Efficiency Rating of 13. That shows a deep team, one of players that play within their means, and a team that can do some damage once the stars come out. I would be interested to see if my good friend Jason would do a JPoint rating for the Pacers, as we now know that this statistic proves beyond a reasonable doubt if a team is good or not.

Don't sleep on the Pacers.

The Atlantic Divison's JPoints

Here you go, Dave. Ask and you shall receive. Here's the current picture in the NBA's Atlantic Division, in terms of wins and losses:

1. Philadelphia (10-4) (0.714 Win%) (0.388 Strength of Schedule)
2. New York (6-8) (0.429 Win%) (0.403 SOS)
3. Boston (5-8) (0.386 Win%) (0.442 SOS)
4. New Jersey (4-11) (0.267 Win%) (0.524 SOS)
5. Toronto (4-11) (0.267 Win%) (0.508 SOS)

And here's the current picture in terms of offensive efficiency:

1. Boston (37.3 JPoint)
2. Philadelphia (36.2 JPoint)
3. New Jersey (35.4 JPoint)
4. New York (34.5 JPoint)
5. Toronto (33.0 JPoint)


Am I the only one who realizes how wild this is? Absolutely no one saw this coming. The Philadelphia 76ers are in first place in the Atlantic division. They lead the aged Boston Celtics who have won the division for the past 4 years and the New York Knicks who came into the year with deep playoff hopes (they also lead the Raptors and Nets but we don't care about those teams). The Sixers are 10-4 right now and are in the top 10 in virtually every statistical category in the NBA. Not only is the team giving up the second least amount of points in the league- they're also scoring the third highest amount of points per game. Philadelphia has quietly become possibly the most efficient team in the NBA.

So how exactly has the happened? Balance. Complete team balance. When looking up and down the Sixers roster, they don't have one guy who averages taking more than 11 shots per game. In fact, their highest scorer is Lou Williams who averages 15.7 points per game. The most impressive thing about this team though, is the fact that they have 7 players averaging 10 points or more per game- which doesn't happen too often in the NBA.

Personally, I'm going to credit coach Doug Collins. Since taking over the team a year ago, he has done a great job keeping this team under control and getting the best out of his players. He brought the team to the playoffs in his first year and lost in the first round- but did get a win off the eventual Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat. The scary thing is, this team can continue to improve a lot. With stat sheet stuffer Andre Iguodala, super sixth man Lou Williams, the promising future of point guard Jrue Holliday, and plenty of more young talent, the sky is the limit for this Philly squad.

Despite not having a superstar, the Philadelphia 76ers are very, very quietly emerging as one of the better teams in the Eastern Conference. Further team balance and avoiding egos will contribute to the continued improvement of the team. I think it's time that Jay starts using the JPoint on his hometown team.

Good News, Bullets Blog Fans: The JPoint is Relevant

To be honest, the night I made the JPoint I was just looking for a numerical way to prove Kobe's overratedness. However, I was fairly unbiased and we've adjusted the JPoint calculation method slightly to reflect offensive efficiency. I meant it to be an individual thing, but in last night's post I expanded it to entire teams as an explanation of why the Heat won.

Well in class today I was thinking. What if offensive efficiency is the single most important determinant of the winner of an NBA? Sounds absurd right, because I mean it's only a part of the game - there's assists, rebounds, defense, steals, substitutions, momentum, and the occasional brawl between players and fans.

But chew on this: I crunched some numbers from the games yesterday (there were only 3 - a small sample size, for sure) and look at my findings:

Game 1: Houston Rockets 90, New Orleans Hornets 88 (Final/OT)
To summarize this game in one ESPN headline, "Rockets survive awful 4th to top Hornets in OT." The fact that neither team scored more than 90 points in 53 minutes of play should reiterate that. But if you were looking for a statistical measure of offensive effectiveness, I have just the thing (see where I'm going with this?):
Houston: 30.5 JPoint (that's horrendous, in relation to averages)
New Orleans: 28.2 JPoint (and that would be even worse)

For those of you keeping track, that's 1/1 on JPoint reflecting final score.

Heat Beat Lakers.. But Why?

So tonight the Heat beat the Lakers convincingly - by 11 points - and (as usual) Lebron and Kobe were the two best players on the court.

The basic stats, which are impressive for both players:

James: 31 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists, 4 steals, 3 blocks
Bryant: 24 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists, 3 steals

The more advanced stats, which show that neither player really had a spectacular night:

James: 0.444 FG%, 0.714 FT%, 37.1 JPoint
Bryant: 0.381 FG%, 1.000 FT%, 37.5 JPoint

So, as Kobe fans may point out, Bryant was slightly more efficient than James. And, in a strange role reversal, James fans would respond by saying that the only stat that counts is a win. I disagree with that notion, as you probably know, and I love the statistical reasons for why teams win games. Let's look at the rest of the players (skipping every stat besides points and JPoint because what else do you really need?).

Thursday, January 19, 2012

We're Now Big Time

Well guys, we've finally done it. We're registering for Technorati.

(Claim code: XGFBA4CV2UFN)

It won't be long until we have enough money to buy a Bullets Blog private jet and season tickets to every sporting event, concert, and movie opening ever. 

We Could See Mayweather-Pacquiao On May 5th

If you remember from a week ago, Floyd Mayweather posted the following tweets:

The NBA Injury Situation - Western Conference

To continue our analysis of which NBA teams are the healthiest and thus poised for more success in the coming weeks, let's move on to the West.

Teams are in order of current rank in the conference:

Oklahoma City Thunder
Eric Maynor, knee (out for season)
No doubt that loss hurt, but the Thunder have proven they're deep enough to win without Maynor. As the season goes on, their depth could possibly maybe become an issue. But their core contributors are all young enough that they should be just fine. If they could trend up, I'd say they would. But they can't. So I won't. 

The NBA Injury Situation - Eastern Conference

As nearly everyone predicted, the injury situation is killing the NBA in this weird, wacky, short-but-way-more-compact season. Teams with more depth than talent are usurping the teams with a small group of superstars - the teams that  have been successful in the past, with a full season.

Today, about a quarter of the way into the season, we'll take a look at the standings of both conferences (maybe, or maybe just the East today, we'll see), each team's injury situation, and where they'll be trending from now until midseason.

Eastern Conference
Chicago Bulls
Derrick Rose, toe (day-to-day)
Rip Hamilton, groin (day-to-day)
CJ Watson (day-to-day)
Obviously, the potential to lose your starting frontcourt to injury is a black cloud. The good news for Chicago is their backup guards have been able to get it done, winning two games against the past few days. The ability to preserve Rose and Hamilton will be key for a deep playoff run for Chicago. As Michael Wilbon wrote this morning, they can beat teams like Phoenix without Rose, but they likely won't win a playoff game - let alone a series - without him. They might trend down slightly to preserve their health and depth. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Guys It's Cool We Fixed College Football... Again

If you didn't get a chance to look at our previous college football playoff bracket post, there is a link for your viewing pleasure.

Today, we will tackle the topic of paying players in college football. This model could be adapted to other major college sports like basketball and maybe even hockey. But we will start with football because it is the largest and has the most room for improvement. And because we already posted something that we can build off of.

I am posting this, but Chris and I had a text discussion about it earlier today so his thoughts are in here as well - although I can't guarantee that he supports every facet. To the blog!

The Basics
Personally, I feel like not paying college athletes (in sports that bring in revenue to the schools) is absurd. It's a free farm system for the major leagues that exploits the talents of young men and women and keeps huge amounts of money in the pockets of universities and professional sports executives.

The Dwight Howard Trade Situation

Since the summer, one of the biggest NBA free agent headlines (aside from Chris Paul) has been the future destination for Dwight Howard. It's amazing how much speculation goes on during times like this. Remember in the summer of 2010 when LeBron was rumored to be going to a new team everyday until this? The amount of pressure put on these athletes to make the right decision for not only themselves, but for the fans, their team and the league is unfathomable. But in Dwight Howard's case, it's confusing as to why he is having such a difficult time with his choice.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Jerry Thornton on Tim Tebow

This may count as a guest blog, I'm not entirely sure because the author didn't submit it via e-mail and he technically didn't say we could post it. It was written by Barstool Sports Boston's Jerry Thornton. Like to the original post here, but I promise I didn't change anything in the translation. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Jay Hawks - Week 3

Team TOPH's Fantasy Update - Week 3

Sport Capitalism

This is a response to Mark's post about the Green Bay Packers from yesterday. To summarize:
  • The Packers are owned by the public
  • Packers fans fill Lambeau field to the tune of a 31-year waiting list for season tickets
  • If the Jets drew the same fans-to-local-population ratio, they would need 5.4 million fans per game (you guys know how I love stats that support a point)
  • Since the team is owned by a large group of people, the GM is given a lot of power and has a lot of expectations to meet. Because he does not own any of the team, he is not protected by the whole "I paid for the team so I am going to be here as long as I want" theory like a lot of owners

Who Is Trying To Gamble on MLK Day?

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Green Bay Packers: NFL Capitalists

The Green Bay Packers are the best run franchise in any sport.

I am not alone in my belief in this concept. The fact that the Packers are a publicly owned team is widely known, and that alone makes them the best run franchise in sports.
In my opinion, running a team is the same as running a business. The players represent the employees, the fans represent the customers, the field represents the plant, restaurant, etc. and the upper management represents the corporate leaders. In order for the team to function properly, like a business, a balance has to be struck between the players, coaches, management and fans that all participants can benefit and succeed, and therefore cause a desire to perform. A desire to perform, a desire to succeed? Sounds like capitalism to me!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

So.. Uh.. Check Out The Dude Who Now Holds The JPoint Single-Game Record

Meet Deividas Dulkys (I pronounce that day-vee-das dul-kees, but I could be wrong). He's from Lithuania and he plays for Florida State.

"The Knicks Are Back"...Almost

So here's the thing, I've been a huge Knicks fan for a very, very long time. I was convinced they could be a playoff team ever since Stephon Marbury was running the show, Jamal Crawford chucked, and chucked and chucked AND since Nate Robinson fought JR Smith.

Now, things in New York are a little different. The beginning of the 2010-2011 season began with the failure to sign LeBron James-but also with the success of signing Amar'e Stoudemire. The departure of fan favorite David Lee left fans upset but it was just the first sign of change to come in the Big Apple. The team had definitely improved and Amar'e was surrounded by young talent with loads of potential.

Guest Blog: Trevor Laicha on Allen Iverson

This guest blog comes to us, again, from younger bro Trevor. 

Congrats To Dirk on 23k

Dirk Nowitzki scored the 23,000th point tonight, placing him into an elite group of NBA players that has to be considered just about the best 23 NBA players from history. Most of them only need one name. One of them only needs two letters. The full list:

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Guest Blog: Trevor Laicha - Free Throws

I'd like to present you with our first-ever Bullets Blog Guest Blog. Written after Lebron left 8 points at the free throw line last night and cost the Heat a victory. 

Thanks Trevor

Bullets Blog Tee Shirts

So the first batch came in the mail today after what felt like months of waiting but was only like 5 days. And I must say, they look even better in person than they do on the site. The folks over at spreadshirt did a really nice job. Get yours today from the Bullets Shop!

Music Video of the Day: Chris Brown Freestyles

I like Chris Brown.
Niggas In Paris

My Last


Maybe that last one isn't technically a "music video" but I had to include the last video for the following lines:

"They yellin' 'calm down, please Chris, take it easy'" - I'm assuming "they" is Rihanna?
"I'm killin' it and I ain't even a rapper, b" - Definitely the best singer-rapper in the business

Live Performance of the Day: Eminem & Jay-Z, Renegade

My two favorite rappers.  Together.  On the same stage.  Kills me to know I had tickets to the concert Letterman was talking about.  Only thing about this video is that Em does this song with Royce da 5'9, and that version is way better.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Greg McElroy, Soon To Be Jets Starter

So I check out ESPN.com this afternoon, obviously after I already got my sporting news from Bullets Blog, and one of the headlines is, "Report: Some Jets rip Sanchez.  Sparano In."

In Case You Missed It

Bring the people to their feet, Ricky! Vamos wolves, indeed.

Live Performance of the Day: Kris Allen - Heartless

Well Chris is slacking today so I suppose I'll take over his duty of posting the live performance of the day. I've been hoping he'd post this since we started, but since he hasn't here you go. Undoubtedly the best American Idol performance of any season. This won him the title. Unfortunately he's been basically silent since he put out his first album.

I could literally listen to this man sing the names in the phone book. Perfect voice. Pause.

Music Video of the Day: Mike Posner - Bow Chicka Wow Wow

Mike Posner just seems like such a cool dude. Saw him live in Philly, and it was awesome. This video should only reinforce those positive thoughts: just pure comedy. Not a big fan of Lil Wayne's part of this song - his voice is not made for singing. Some might say that it's not made for rapping either. I don't agree with them. My favorite part is at 3:40. The smiles are priceless. 

The JPoint and Some Thoughts on Kobe

So we got a lot of feedback about the Kobe/JPoint post last night. Some of it was logical and literate. So I took that feedback into account and would like to present you with a revision of the stat.

I'm Back...With a Vengeance

It's been a while but the original NBA writer for this site (ME) is back. I was very angered by the last post regarding a man some call Kobe "Bean" Bryant so I decided to instill some knowledge on you people.

Why Kobe's 48 Was Not Really That Big Of A Deal

Wow, Kobe scored 48 points in one game!!!

Oh, wait. He took 31 shots from the field and 13 from the free throw line. That's nearly half of the Lakers' field goals and more than half of their free throws. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Rank These Versions: Levels (originally by Avicii)

Don't Sleep On The Spanish National Basketball Team

There's a lot of talk on the internet about the 2012 USA National Basketball Team. It's probably going to feature CP3, Derrick Rose, Lebron, Melo, Dwyane Wade, Kobe, Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin, Kevin Love, and Dwight Howard. This is the team that went undefeated in 2008 and blew everyone out of the water. Good luck to everyone else this year, right?

Music Video of the Day: Eminem - Without Me

Another very creative music video for you today - although it's not a half hour long. I'd put Eminem in his prime up against any rapper ever. I do recall sending Chris a text in like junior year of high school that went something like, "his flow is so ill." A little embarrassing, actually, but very true. Enjoy.

By the way, this version of the Real World is not as good as Chappelle's.

Live Performance of the Day: Taylor Swift, Should've Said No

This was a live performance at some year's ACM Awards.  And if you're wondering what ACM stands for, I am too.  I'm bad with acronyms but don't care enough to look it up.  Sorry to spark curiosity.  It's not  a particularly great vocal performance, but I love Taylor Swift, and it was certainly interesting to watch.  If I could have one person play an acoustic set in a small room just for me, it would be Dave Matthews.  Next would be John Mayer.  And third would be Taylor Swift.  She's so cute.

Texts From Last Night

Unfortunately, I missed 71% of the scoring and 100% of the points from Bullets Blog MVP Jeremy Shelley in last night's BCS National Championship Game.  From the last few minutes of the third quarter through the duration of the game and some of the post game interviews, these were some of the texts that were sent:

Tide Rolled

Not that I really care all that much about college football, but I was really pulling for the Tigers. Here's why:

Oh it's chasing a jackal? Oh my gosh!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Alley Oops?

Everyone's favorite play in basketball is the alley-oop. So simple, yet so flashy. Two of our favorite combinations of passers and dunkers:

Music Video of the Day: Kanye West - Runaway

Yes, this "music video" is over a half hour long and contains more than one song. But I strongly suggest that you watch it - all of it - because it's a refreshing change-up from most music videos (see J. Cole - Work Out from last week) in that it has a plot and character development. Also don't sleep on the fact that it contains (all of the?) songs from the future Rap Album of the Year. If that's not enough, you get to see Selita Ebanks basically naked and dressed as a phoenix. 

Jay Hawks Update - Week 2

Live Performance of the Day: Dave Matthews Band, Ants Marching

I know there hasn't been much variety in these, and this is already the second one that's gone to the Dave Matthews Band, but it's Dave's birthday today.  The least I could do is post a video of the song that really kick-started their career to becoming one of the best touring bands in history.

Plus, I love Roi's run at the end following Boyd's solo.

Happy Birthday Dave! 

Team TOPH's Fantasy Update - Week 2

Sunday, January 8, 2012

I Am Essentially The NFL Genie.. Except For The Exact Opposite

From my post on January 3rd:

Cincinnati over Houston
"It probably won't even be close"
Pittsburgh over Denver
"the Broncos have no shot"
Detroit over New Orleans
I never should have doubted Brees
Atlanta over New York
"one of these teams doesn't deserve to be in the playoffs".. and I was talking about NYG

So, if you're keeping score at home, that is 0-4 thus far in the playoffs. Woof.

The good news is I still have everyone alive next round:

New England (this time it's actually a lock that Tebow loses)
San Francisco
Green Bay

Live Performance of the Day (1/8/12): Jay-Z & Phish, 99 Problems

I guess out of respect for the best rapper alive, on the day of his kid's birth he deserves the live performance of the day.  There's no way anything could possibly go wrong with the combination of Jay and Phish.

That being said, assuming what Jason wrote is true, "Blue Ivy" is a stupid name for a kid.  I know it's symbolic, but come on Jay, I expect better.

Music Video of the Day: Jay-Z - Dirt Off Your Shoulder

In honor of the birth of Jay-Z and Beyonce's super-baby, I present to you one of the few Hova songs that I can actually tolerate.

Word on the street early this morning was that the baby girl was named Brooklyn. That changed to Ivy Blue and now everyone's pretty sure that it's Blue Ivy. Why?

The Blueprint (2001): 426k copies sold opening week; 2x platinum
The Blueprint II (2002): 545k sold in opening week; 2x platinum
The Blueprint III (2009): 476k sold in opening week; 1.75m sold overall
(The)Blue(print) Iv(y) (2012): Daughter

Very clever, Jay. I see what you did there.

C-E-O of the R-O-C, Hov

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Music Video of the Day: Young Humma - Smang It

Every great musical artist has created a word. Beyonce had "bootylicious." So did the rest of TLC (Destiny's Child?). Lil' Wayne and the Hot Boys (Boyz?) had "bling." Jay-Z and Kanye West invented "swag." What's that? They didn't invent "swag"? Flavor Flav did? Wait why would Hova lie about inventing something related to the rap game?
I can't really thing of any other examples of note - I'm sure I missed a bunch, feel free to leave any omits in the comments below - but all that matters is that Young Humma and Flynt Flossy can be added to this great fraternity of music. They combined "smash" and "bang" to make "smang." And the song is award-worthy. Total Grammy snub, if you ask me:
Notable lyrics:

  • You say in bed that your man is a lame guy, having sex with him is just like watching paint dry
  • And when you get here, I'm not just gonna bang it, I'mma smash it too
  • This is what I like to call "smash bang fusion"
  • Smash and bang is my favorite combination
  • I like to mix it up, I like to do stuff
  • Flynt Flossy, known across the nation

Live Performance of the Day (1/7/12): John Mayer, In Your Atmosphere

This is from Where The Light Is, a John Mayer live DVD/CD release.  The first set was him in front of a massive crowd with nothing but a stool and an acoustic guitar.  Can't get any more simple and elegant than that.  One of the most intimate and honest performances I've ever seen, and if this song doesn't hit home then you honestly have no pulse.

Playoff Picks

These are my picks to advance throughout the playoffs.


Last night I wrote a rather lengthy comment on one of my good friend's political blog.  Although it's a controversial subject, it was a respectful debate.  I linked my name in the comment to this blog.  I just want to say that those are my personal views, not the views of this blog in general.  I'm sure Jay shares significantly different ones.  If anyone reads it, disagrees, and would like to have a respectful debate about my claims, feel free to shoot me an email, I'd love to.  I just wanted to clear the air to anyone that may have seen my post that those views do not represent the blog, strictly myself.

To the second part of my post, the apology.  I'd like to apologize for my lack of posting lately.  Things have been crazy, coupled with sports being flat out depressing.  I've been insanely busy with school, writing music, and following my newly ignited political passion.  Add in the fact all of my sports teams suck, I've had no desire lately to follow anything sports related, much less write about it.  It's a tough life being a Mets and Jets fan.  Hope is certainly hard to come by.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Live Performance of the Day (1/6/12): Dave Matthews Band - The Stone (9/18/11)

For the second Live Performance of the Day, I couldn't resist doing a clip from my favorite band.  You've got a little bit of everything with The Stone.  The intro with Dave solo, playing a crazy riff (how he sings over that I'll never understand), is perfect.  Then, Jeff Coffin's entrance on the tenor sax is just haunting.  His solo is fantastic too.  And for those who actually make it through to the end (most likely those are truly the 1%), the outro of Carter leading the crowd chanting the lyrics to the classic Elvis song Can't Help Falling in Love is classic DMB enjoying themselves on stage.

Oh, and the fact I was there makes it even better.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The NBA #1 Pick Battle of the Decades

Here's a concept: what if the first picks in the NBA Draft all got together (in their primes) and sorted into teams based on the decade that they were drafted?

Live Performance of the Day (1/5/12): Jack Johnson - You and Your Heart

Since Jay posted the Music Video of the Day, I decided to do the Live Performance of the Day.  I looked through a lot of videos, and although it may come as a surprise, the first ever Live Performance of the Day has nothing to do with the Dave Matthews Band.  This was a really tough decision but lets be honest, how can you go against David Guetta on the Accordian?

Music Video of the Day: J. Cole - Work Out

This video has it all. A song that incorporates samples of Kanye West and Paula Abdul. Hood life. Basketball. A sick house party. It's not exactly a creative music video (by any definition of the term), but it's cool to imagine that people actually live like this. By no means is it a new song, and it is most definitely a summer song, but it's getting posted in the middle of winter so deal with it and enjoy the music. 

Guys It's Cool I Fixed The BCS Problem

Everyone knows we need a playoff. Nothing has ever been more clear. The problem is deciding who gets to play in the tournament. Well... I fixed it. Start with a 16-team bracket, and fill it up like this:

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Sunday, January 1, 2012

DeMarcus Cousins Wants A Trade

So the rumors are flying that DeMarcus Cousins had demanded a trade from the Kings. Well if he wants a trade, I'll give him a trade!

Billboard's Artists of 2011

At the end of every year, Billboard puts out a list of the top 100 musical artists of the year. I always like to go through and figure out how many I've seen live. It was a lot last year. A little less this year:
(Note: doesn't mean I saw them this year. Just that I've seen them at some point in my life)