One eye open like
I know some readers fondly believe that I spent too long harping on the Amare cataclysm, but I'm beginning to worry that my obsession carried the sting of prophecy. The season hasn't even started yet, and already
With a "big trade," a
Let me repeat that in brail so you blind fools can hear me: the Bucks are a government experiment to bring the FreeDarko worldview to the undeserving sports fans who spend most of their time reveling in the NFL. Revolt accordingly.
While I'm going full gripe, let me speak my encumbered peace about a new, disturbing trend I like to call "free agency is the new draft." I'm getting sick of cutting and pasting HTML, but I'm sure it comes as no surprise to anyone desperate enough to look at this site regularly that 2002's befuddling draft crop is coming up for extensions. Among others, Dunleavy II and Nene are looking at contracts in the fifty to sixty mill? GM PLEEEEZE!!!!!! This isn't even the strange, strange case of blessed 2001 Draft alums Curry, Chandler, and Kwame, all of whom toiled in the shadow of the MONJO (Myth of Next Jermaine O'Neal, for those not rocking their own mental FreeDarko glossary); Junior and the artist formerly known as Hilario (did anyone but me, at this moment, grasp what an amusing last name that is? if I make a reference to "the Great Hilario," will I be the only person reading this who cares for the Richard Thompson reference?) have both had ample PT and appear to have more or less fully-formed NBA games. Yet still we hear of front offices drooling over potential, athleticism, skill sets, wing span. . . It would be one thing if we were talking about Larry Hughes, who at least had one masterful season of putting it all together before garnering big money, or Dalembert, whose eventual brilliance is just a matter of a favorable system and consistently supportive coach. With Nene and Dunleavy II, though, we're basically seeing them splash into the market as if they've still got an island's worth of growing to go, like they're projects being assessed for Draft Night.
(Best believe there is a difference between killing it in limited opprtunities, like Michael Redd once did, and gambling that a player can go from incomplete to monstrous solely on the strength of being given the opportunity to start.)
If anyone thinks I am basing this discussion solely on the current Duns and 'Ne situations, you're right. I am not sure if this applies in any other case, yet, and I have not the time nor the energy to find out such blushful answers. But look, these two represent what I think of as a "ready-to-play" draft archetypes: a talented but seasoned underclassman, and an athletic, gutsy low post Euro. Apart from elderly overseasmen and four-year starters, there are no draft entrants more expected to make things happen, soon, than the two categories of reason represented by Dunleavy and Nene. Thusly, pretending they're still speculative properties goes against the last five years or so of Drafterly logic.
Besides, even the 2001 high school class had to show something before they could make some noise as free agents. And yes, I count the early going of Jordan, Year 2, as Kwame's showing you something. The only time this attitude toward a still-raw, as-of-yet-unproven former first-rounder made some sense was when the Bobcats jumped on
but in the context of the Kings, he might as well have been a high schooler being brought along purposefully slow, and most people knew that "Gerald Wallace" and "polished offensive game" are an oxymoronic pair if ever there was one.
As compared with "polished offensive game" and
which are merely paradoxical and thus endlessly exciting.
(Just in case no one's picked up on this, what little actual fact I do make use of comes to us via
P.S. That T-Mac cameo in the new Mike Jones video never happened.