Smoke, Meet Steam

First, sobs all around. We'll have to wait another year for The New NBA to dawn in earnest. That said, I'm driving around West Texas for most of next week, and gutting this road trip to suit the Eastern Conference Finals would have been, to say the least, an inconvenience for all those involved.

I'm starting in on this early, at the end of the third, because I'm getting a disgustingly ripe smack of deja vu right across the face. These Cavs have done something remarkable, but in a seven-game series against a legit contendor they were bound to get definitively exposed at some point. They managed three remarkable games of molten courage, including wresting away home court advantage and giving themselves two chances to eliminate everyone's stolid pick to win it all. It was only a matter of time, though, before they came back to earth with a vengeance; you could argue that it began when they failed to take advantage of the Pistons' mistakes on Friday, or something about momentum and home court. But today, you're really seeing what it comes down to. Just as there was no way that Kobe et al. could really have ever expected to slay the Suns (making their squandering of 3-1 more forgivable), the Cavs simply aren't as good as the Pistons. A freakish upset would've been nice, but that nagging, sinking feeling you felt all afternoon was the realization that your dreams of James/Wade were living on borrowed time.

(Maybe this will also put to rest the whole "Kobe quit" controversy, since Our Lord and Savior didn't exactly put up the most sparkling second half numbers.)

As much as I'd wanted this over on Friday, this series kind of had to go seven. If LeBron was going to pull this off and steal the crown away from the Association's reigning favorites, it had to be certifiable. No goofy four game win streak that could just be more evidence that the very rhythms of the universe, or at least Stern and ABC, favor LeBron and all those who graze about him. Seven hard-bitten games could leave no mistake that the winner deserved it, whoever it ended up as. I'm also sure that, in some way, the Pistons having to go seven helped them recapture their forgotten grip on the postseason, which many of us had feared (or hoped, for a variety of reasons) lost in the wake of Flip's Campaign for Change. I've thought a couple of times over this past week that the Pistons and Spurs play their best when asked to in no uncertain terms close things out, as if they've figured out that only the final quarter or the risk of hittin' the planks are worth their energy. That either makes them objectionably arrogant gamblers, pioneers of efficiency and game theory, or the biggest narrative teases in the history of the Association's second season.

Many have said this already, but I think it's abundantly clear now that LeBron will have his day. Would we rather see it pulled off as an improbable, slightly uncomfortable and undeserved, feat of circumstance, or witness him trundle into battle with the army of proud, sturdy chariots befitting his legend? I'm all for as much James as possible, but watching the rest of the Cavs throw up brick after brick hardly makes me feel like it's the right thing for me—or him—at present time. The Pistons are mortal, the Cavs capable of rising to the occasion, and LeBron the unquestioned future of this sport. In next season's playoffs, I want be sure that it's Bron and the Cavs' worth, not the Pistons' flaws and occasional hubris, that make it a series. Spending three hours waiting for reality to come crashing down is hardly what I'd call an enjoyable viewing experience, and remember, LeBron-as-lovable-underdog is never going to sit right with me. Overcoming the odds is one thing, but LeBron James and dumb luck just don't belong in the same sentence.


At 5/21/2006 6:58 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

and drew gooden looks exactly ray nagin.

At 5/21/2006 7:30 PM, Blogger billikenbluff said...

No more so that George W. and Iran's President Ahmadinejad


At 5/21/2006 8:47 PM, Blogger Nate said...

Shoals: Co-sign on the Nagin and Gooden Resemblance.

As well, much props for pointing out the dichotomy between the way people view Kobe's game seven performance and the way most will view LeBron's game seven let down. I'm sure no one will be calling LBJ a quitter. I think their game 7 failures were more of a sign of their team's ineptitude than a reflection of flaws in their own games. Just like any players that draw double teams, Kobe and LBJ need to be surrounded by shooters. People that when called upon can hit an open shot. The Pistons and the Suns both realized that guys like Smush Parker, Donyell Marshall, Kwame Brown, and Drew Gooden aren't really going to get the job done. And that realization is what caused them both to focus all of their attention on stopping KB8 and LBJ23 in their respective game sevens.

At 5/21/2006 11:23 PM, Anonymous futuristxen said...

The rest of the Cavs had to have set some sort of record for gross ineneptitude. Not a damn single one of them showed up today. Lebron's trustiest steed Andy Verejao was mired in the mud of foul trouble, he's the one guy that you know Lebron has going forward.

Everyone else is available as near as I can tell. Larry Hughes might get another shot, because I've never seen him in his career be this bad. Even as a green eared rookie he could at least finish in the paint.

It's incredible it got to this point really.

I don't know if I'll be able to watch the ECF either. I can't take all this "team team team" talk. But we can sort of root for the Heat, on the basis that they abide by the star system, and I'd sooner see the Finals reppin that ideal than another 7 game slog of Pistons glory-mandering. Even the Spurs are a team of stars. Albeit international stars. I would not mind seeing Dirty Dirk hoist the trophy though.

At 5/21/2006 11:32 PM, Blogger bobduck said...

I agree with your points, especially the one about Bron Bron v. Kobe.

What I am confused by is the presence of John Brown pictures in your post. It seems that Lincoln would be far more appropriate for Bron-- he's reinventing the NBA Nation, whereas Brown fits Gilbert more than anyone.

Maybe I'm totally off base, but could someone explain how Brown got the Bron?

At 5/21/2006 11:42 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

bd--point taken, abe lincoln for lebron and john brown for arenas makes a lot more sense. however, i was incredibly angry and despondent when i picked out those images, and in those situations the only thing that can salve me is to pick the most inflammatory thing i can. hence the warsaw ghetto kid soldiers between the two.

i was going to say "bron has a beard," but lincoln's is pretty famous too, and it's "john brown's body," not "jb's beard" as i for some reason thought at one point this afternoon.

basically in every way possible, lincoln works better. is even just as nasty an implication for the pistons.

WV: ushrlbyf="urshr, i'll be your friend!!!!"

At 5/22/2006 12:13 AM, Anonymous fix_the_knicks said...

Let me preface this by saying that at the end of the season, I was as much on the Kobe for MVP bandwagon as anybody -- I even got into it on this site with a couple of dirk-supporters. But Kobe's game 7 act is unparalleled, and does not bear comparison to Bron being shut down by the best defense in the league. Yeah, so he couldn't take it to the hole against the triple team that followed him through that crappy pick-and-roll that they ran on pretty much every possession, especially once it became eminently clear that Z was a total non-factor. This is equivalent to Kobe consciously taking himself out of a game to make a point? Give some credit where it's due -- that was some masterful defense, and whether or not that fits the FD vision, it's still one way to win a basketball game.

At 5/22/2006 12:17 AM, Anonymous bayaz said...

As far as Bron and the beard go, maybe Marx would be a better comparison. Definately revolutionary, though with grand dreams that are (at this point) totally unfulfilled, and that can perhaps only be fulfilled through the further development of the very systems against which they fight.

At 5/22/2006 12:42 AM, Blogger mutoni said...

maybe i'm a miserable cynic; but i find it incredible that Cavs (or more fittingly, Lebron) fans are actually upsest over the game 7 defeat. What did y'all expect?

Much like the Laker series, game 6 WAS the season for all intents and purposes. If you don't beat the laughably superior team in 6 games or less, you have no chance in game 7 on the road. None. I confidently didn't watch either game 7 because as a sports fan, you should know these things. No?

At 5/22/2006 1:04 AM, Blogger bobduck said...

Lincoln fits better than Marx because Marx's system was and is ultimately a failure. Peep the former USSR's current state.

Lincoln's idealism was more successful, just as Bron is and will continue to be. Just like Bron, Lincoln's ideals took some time (a Civil War, Reconstruction, and about a century before MLK) to fully bear their fruit.

Just as Lincoln did, Bron wandered in the wilderness of the lottery for the first two years of his career, but finally found the Playoffs in his 3rd.

One could say that these playoffs are Bron's Emancipation Proclamation: he fought the Pistons to a bloody draw that could be concieved as a moral victory for the Cavs. The parallels even exist with his generals (coaches). Lincoln was burdened with severely awful military leadership in the first years of the wars, just as Bron was.

Only after a while do both men realize the qualities that it takes to adequately deliver their message to the masses. Maybe Bron has found his Grant in Mike Brown, but maybe he needs a few more changes of the guard to be truly effective.

At 5/22/2006 1:09 AM, Anonymous fix_the_knicks said...

bayaz -- only problem with LBJ as Marx is that the star-stystem / FD / whatever vision of basketball for which James is the revolutionary apostle is pretty much the complete opposite of the Marxist vision: the anonymous workers' collective that is the Pistons.

What I'm trying to figure out is whether Larry Brown is Che -- quixotically traveling the nba while evangelizing collectivism -- or Mao -- media darling of the western liberal elites, until his theories lead inexorably to the bloody massacre of the cultural revolution.

Somebody with a better grasp of archaic basketball history can fill in Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin, etc.

At 5/22/2006 1:14 AM, Blogger bobduck said...

Would that make MJ the Czars?

At 5/22/2006 1:34 AM, Anonymous bayaz said...

fix_the_knicks, I think Brown (with the Pistons) has clearly got to be Mao (2004 defeat of the Kuomintang, 2005 the cultural revolution), or maybe the Khmer Rouge, same massacre but ultimately destroyed by another set of commies (vietnam/spurs).

There is clearly an ideological break between Marx and Lebron as FreeDarko concept, but I think my point is that ideology aside, both visions will ultimately fail without a measure of adjustment (european socialism/better role players on the Cavs) that is ultimately a form of rapprochement with the challenged systems. The power to create from nothing is not limitless.

At 5/22/2006 1:34 AM, Anonymous fix_the_knicks said...

I mean, if you want to look at it from an intellectual history standpoint, MJ has got to be Nietzsche: the first one to open our eyes to the dynamic, transformative potential of the individual -- and pretty much as anti-Marxist as you could get. Note that Hegel/Magic was a stepping stone for both Marx AND Nietzsche. Also, I'd like to propose Riley = Stalin, due to their shared penchant for wars of attrition.

At 5/22/2006 1:56 AM, Anonymous bayaz said...

Magic seems more like a Leibnitz, but Michael as Nietzsche is perfect, though he didn't go insane and write (on the court) his own Ecce Homo. (how beautiful would that have been ? )

Lebron then, (stylistically & not historically) has got to be Deleuze & Guattari (the drive as line of flight, rhizomatic ability to explode from any point, ? ultimate move beyond the individual into the multiplicity (not the many/team) ?, “In the Real, everything is possible”, etc.). I think the effortlessness of his play would probably fit as well, almost as if he seems to forget the limits that nominally constrain him (Bron as schizophrenic).

At 5/22/2006 10:25 AM, Blogger GentleWhoadie9000 said...

Sometimes I wonder if most freedarko-ites live with they moms...in a dank basement full of paperback copies of Kant and William Kornhauser...waiting for the day they can level a witty psychobabble analogy that may warrant a glance from Bethlehem Shoals.

MJ is not Nietzsche, Larry Brown is not Che (seriously?). I don't wanna hate, (fuck it, I do) but I'm getting tired of hearing a bunch of tenuous musical/political/historical analogies that never completely work and don't really need to be made in the first place.

Manifest the state known as "The Knowledge!"


At 5/22/2006 10:32 AM, Blogger Mirabeau Lamar said...

Poppovich is Stalin. Ruthless, authoritarian, Slavic, military background and perceives himself as protector of the Slavs (i.e. recruiting in E. Europe). His ideology is truly collectivist (make the extra pass/solid defense/there is no "I" in Bruce Bowen), and his methods are sinister.

Of course, that would make Avery Johnson his Kruschev, which I'm not comfortable with at all, since AJ's world-historical alterego is obviously Terry Porter.

At 5/22/2006 11:07 AM, Anonymous Torgo said...

To veer, for a second, back into basketball, I breathed a sigh of relief that the Pistons won, not just because they're my team, not merely because losing would've been the biggest choke in history... It's just that I'm kind of tired of Lebron.

Before you exile me (excommunicate?), hear me out. For him to step into the playoffs and win it all in the first go, not only would the hype become finally too much (hell, I live in Japan, have limited access to games, but dear lord, this Witness crap is everywhere, and is a bit creepy), but it would just be too easy. By losing, by being beaten down, he gets the narrative structure in place. It's always the same, be it romantic comedies, action, or drama: hero arrives. hero has mission, hero suffers setback, hero regroups, hero conquers. Without the setback, Lebron remains, well, unsympathetic to me, and I'd imagine most fans. Most fans of anything aren't champions themselves. Instead, we align ourselves with teams, we dream of players who do things we could never do. Their feats we call our own, but their humanity, their falibility makes them one of us. If Lebron never fails, we cannot make that human connection. He must wander in the wastes before he can guide us, and all that.

And don't worry, there will be time for Lebron/Wade, Melo/Paul, for Felton, for Gordon and Hinrich (please?), and with any luck, Amare, we have years of these matchups ahead of us. I only wonder, who will be this generation's Malone or Barkley? Who will sit down at the end with no ring?

One last thing, last week, I heard Frank Deford on NPR, talking about basketball, and sounding, well, Free Darkoish. It was kind of spooky. I'm sure the column is somewhere on SI.

word verification:zwmmmcha. no freaking clue.

and Brown is Mao. No doubt.

At 5/22/2006 12:10 PM, Anonymous bayaz said...

Whoadie, you really think this shit's less real than paeans to "rocking the stache" and Dirk Nowitzki alterno-realities ? Shoals has been casting Lebron as the ubermensch since the playoffs started and you're gonna hate on Larry Brown as Mao. Come on man.

At 5/22/2006 12:50 PM, Blogger GentleWhoadie9000 said...

let me get specific here.

For one, let's leave Dirk out of this.

For two, it's not about what's real in the blog game, it's about the countless direct analogies which attempt to compare the Suns starting five to each member of The Band or posit links between the stages of Pat Riley's career and the findings of the Warren Comission.

I'm not trying to shit on FreeDarko's whole steez, but it seems like everyone commenting on this site sees the need to produce excessively academic corrolaries between players and philosphers/musicians etc., to prove that they belong on this comment board. I understand that's a component of the FD ethos, but it's been getting a little out of hand on this one. It seems as if everybody gets flowery out of an ostentatious impulse, rather than a substantive one.

Extended analogies seldomly work, keep it short and the point is made. The Mao example- that was a good one. It was succinct and did not nibble at the details that can bring down a whole argument.

Highly specific analogies that attempt to precisely align the universe of basketball with that of the galaxy of existential thinkers are doomed to rediculousness. The task is tall and the parallels are usually tenuous. This approach usually leads me to believe that names are being dropped in order to prove adherance to the FD creed.

The thing that makes FD a good place to read about basketball is the potential for the stylistic diversity of discussion that you just don't get with more conventional sports commentary. I don't want a bunch of people trying to come of as Penham Place clones- it reeks of funk-faking. I want the style from both sides of Penn Avenue youknowwhatimsayin?

At 5/22/2006 12:52 PM, Blogger GentleWhoadie9000 said...

by the way,
i'm glad somebody read that moustache piece. way to do your research.

At 5/22/2006 12:58 PM, Anonymous fix_the_knicks said...

Whoadie -- I'm sure this point has been made here before, but a structuralist would argue that we cannot help but view basketball (and everything else) as acting out a finite set of cultural narratives (e.g., the oedipal narrative, etc), so it would be entirely unsurprising if our constellation of basketball players mirrored our constellation of philosophers, eminent communists, favorite bands, etc.

On other hand, you could also argue that the whole project of applying this kind of critique to basketball knowingly subverts it by basing our judgements on frivolous things like the fact that both Lebron and Marx have a scraggly beard.

Or you could argue that if you're into both intellectual history and basketball, it's only natural to want to weave them together into a single master narrative, even if, as you say, the analogies never completely work.

At 5/22/2006 1:22 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

i'm sure there's probably some rule against this, but i personally think that the point here is to discuss basketball through the lens of/with reference points drawn from thangz not so commonly associated with the game or sports in general. that why half the time i tuck mine away in the images, rather than expounding upon them in any great detail; i'm more concerned with using bands, politics, and religion to help me better get basketball, not have them illuminate each other.

silverbird and i talked about this for a while once: basically, we think of this as, on some level, making the "low" of sports part of "high" criticism. but at the same time, we're writing about fucking sports, so it inherently makes it hard to make the stone face when drawing allusions to theorists or whatever. and i don't think that's a stylistic flaw--it's proof that sports can be taken seriously WITHOUT being forced to shed their sense of playfulness, "just a game"-ness, whatever.

the same goes for the distinction between sports and "hip" shit like bands—one is self-consciously stupid and accessible, the other one, the opposite. this doesn't mean i don't believe that there is legitimate meaning in professional athletics, but that it's working itself out in a (pardon my french) more "playful", imaginary, imaginative, and low-pressure environment than in academic or political discourse. and that's the way i try to write about it as something "serious."

At 5/22/2006 1:59 PM, Anonymous bayaz said...

Whoadie, I think you're missing something here, namely that the game isn’t detached from the larger political and social realities in which it takes place. If we can argue that philosophy provides the thought-foundation on which we approach life, then MJ as Nietzsche isn’t merely a namedrop, it’s an attempt to refine our understanding of the history of the game and its relation to the social questions/framework of our era. The major post-Nietzsche and post-emancipation (rise of social democracy) question in continental philosophy revolves around the possibility of individual identity and autonomy in modern life, (Foucault and D&G in particular), something the game’s been trying to figure out itself since Jordan retired. It doesn’t seem like a stretch at all to me to link these two fields on this point.

Now, I’m not sure I want to make the broader claim that basketball and philosophy are both engaged in different attempts to answer the same questions, but it’s not impossible to think so.

On stylistic diversity and seriousness, it might after all be just a “game,” but I don’t think name dropping Nietzsche drains it of any vitality. Everybody knows it's ridiculous, that’s part of the point, even if it is serious.

At 5/22/2006 2:00 PM, Blogger GentleWhoadie9000 said...

I am in general agreement that the drawing of basketball closer to our individual worldviews is what makes our discussions unique and useful. My beef was that I feel there is a particularly odious, frivolous analytical style that is being overused (in the commentary section). Bold conjectures and patent absurdity are being buried.

At 5/22/2006 2:52 PM, Blogger Mirabeau Lamar said...


So you want the tone of the comments to reflect an academic-style seriousness, but without the pretentious scholarly references? Why can't FD be analytically frivolous?

I'm teaching a course in the Fall that you may be interested in: HIS 4407, Substantive Discourse on the National Basketball Association in the Post-Sardonic Era.

At 5/22/2006 3:12 PM, Anonymous Sweet Lou said...

Is FD really so willing to call basketball “ridiculous”? Why all the qualifications about seriousness? “Just a game”? No more than art is. But if I said theater was “just acting,” that it couldn’t be mixed into broader cultural critique without a few grains of salt, I’d be tossed out of the critical kitchen by my pre-modern ear.

I thought FD was with me on this one. Or were you guys just playing?

At 5/22/2006 3:23 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

making the "low" purely "high" is a tremendously boring pain in the ass.

admitting that the "low" does some of the same work as the "high," but on its own terms, is from the perspective of the "high" both ridiculous and liberating. much like issues or race, class, and identity working themselves out through something that's ostensibly a recreational pursuit, as opposed to needing someone to explain to them that they COULD.

so i guess we're trying to make the "high" into something "low," without insulting or compromising either in the process.

fuck it, just go here and forget i ever tried to explain this myself.

At 5/22/2006 3:44 PM, Blogger GentleWhoadie9000 said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 5/22/2006 3:46 PM, Blogger GentleWhoadie9000 said...

I feel like I'm being misunderstood here:
My salient points were (supposed to be) two:

1. I am not a big fan of super-broad analogies. A good (read: bad) example here would be an attempt to align a certain set of players with another broad set of ideas/people etc., When done in seriousness, this shit almost never works. When done correctly, it is either brilliant or funny and borne out of a 45 minute shower or sleepless night.

2. Pursuant to number 1 (sort of), sometimes substantive points are being neglected in favor of name-dropping in an attempt to seem as intellectual as possible. This is annoying and pretentious.

By no means am I attempting to pronounce the native methodologies null and void. I'm just sayin' (2000) that sometimes I'm reading along and I get that feeling like I just overheard somebody mentioning Dogfish Head 90 minute IPA, and Foucault in the same sentence. I think that communicates the point most effectively.

Getting my FreeDarko is an important part of my day. I'm just trying to enhance the experience.

At 5/22/2006 4:03 PM, Blogger T. said...

I do have to admit that there's a certain academic one-upsmanship prevalent in the commentary section of FreeDarko. But I look at it this way - it's similar to an and1 game - and if postualting a theory that relates say, Devean George to Kant (I actually don't have a theory) is to the Professor going between someone else's legs - who's to say that the next commentator doesn't try to really pull out some Hot Sizzle type shit (say, Derrida) in order to show up the Professor.

On one hand, it can be entertaining - on the other hand - if it's all academia, all the time - it can be tiring and bothersome. And in need of a good editor - much like actually watching a real and1 streetball tour in person. <--- and THAT is the height of drudgery. I do watch the highlight shows though.

At 5/22/2006 4:10 PM, Blogger Cameron J. said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 5/22/2006 4:13 PM, Blogger Cameron J. said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 5/22/2006 4:16 PM, Blogger Cameron J. said...

The only reason I check Freedarko daily with the fanaticism normally reserved for normally reserved for methemphetimine addicts and Oprah-ites is because its format of mingling the highbrow, argyle kind of academia with Sportscenter quips is, for me, a very postmodern experience. It's playful, a little subversive, well-read, and ultimately functioning via pastiche and irony. On a different note, I don't think anybody posting on a sports blog where there was a picture of a bear consuming a monkey a couple days ago is trying to flaunt their grad school savvy. I'm pretty sure nobody's taking a Lyotard-Charles Barkley linkage (I hope, anyway) with a stiff upper lip and nodding pensively at the screen of their laptop, pipe hanging absently from their mouth. I've read FD and its posters' peculiar rhetoric as being impish, not polemic or pretentious.

At 5/22/2006 4:31 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

one more clarification. when i said:

so i guess we're trying to make the "high" into something "low," without insulting or compromising either in the process.

it was about our rhetoric, language, presentation, etc.

but this one

we think of this as, on some level, making the "low" of sports part of "high" criticism.

was all about content.

and so i would then refer you, once again, to this:

it's proof that sports can be taken seriously WITHOUT being forced to shed their sense of playfulness, "just a game"-ness, whatever. . . this doesn't mean i don't believe that there is legitimate meaning in professional athletics, but that it's working itself out in a (pardon my french) more "playful", imaginary, imaginative, and low-pressure environment than in academic or political discourse. and that's the way i try to write about it as something "serious."

there you have it, the magic formula.

At 5/22/2006 4:35 PM, Blogger Bethlehem Shoals said...

I don't think anybody posting on a sports blog where there was a picture of a bear consuming a monkey a couple days ago is trying to flaunt their grad school savvy.

that pretty much says it all. ask anyone who was actually in my program and i bet they'd locate me closer to the "bear eats monkey" end of the spectrum.

At 5/22/2006 4:49 PM, Anonymous Memory Jones said...

On a completely different subject, I just came up with a way better game than word verification semiotics: go up to the top of the page and click on "next blog" in the banner. It's called "what's next, FD?"

The answer:


A recipe in Turkish.... this can only mean that Mehmet Okur finally goes public in '07.

At 5/22/2006 4:55 PM, Anonymous Memory Jones said...

More apropos: every approach has its drawbacks. Maybe FD does lend itself to all sorts of intellectual and allegorical excesses in the comments section, but there's no perfect way. What's the alternative? Cite more numbers? Talk about haircuts? Mention mediocre movies?

(Speaking of limits, Bill Simmons' weakest moment, to me, was not the Pearl Jam column, but when he wrote that "He Got Game" would have been a better movie with an all hip-hop soundtrack instead of Aaron Copland. We've all got our ghettos to escape from, but it's his occasional insight that makes his self-indulgence all the more miserable.)

Next: http://eatlessexercisemore.blogspot.com/

At 5/22/2006 6:15 PM, Blogger OG said...

not related, but i read a review of a book today which shares overlap with what fd has been known to cover in the past, and hence may be of interest to those who gather here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0609601202/sr=8-1/qid=1148335528/ref=pd_bbs_1/104-7735046-8431116?%5Fencoding=UTF8

doesn't come out til early july. sorry for the long ass link; i hope it connects okay. and sorry to disrupt the current thread. carry on.

At 5/22/2006 6:23 PM, Anonymous Pichi Campana Aguanta said...

I have nothing to add to this thread except a simple thank you to the FD world for a good read today. Just when many a blog would have simply shouted down GW9K for throwing the wet blanket all of us in the basement with our copies of Martin Fierro and Come Fly With Me, the commenters come back with interesting support for the FD raison d'être and totally redeem the thread.

And I've noticed a strange thing: I started reading this blog because it just seemed completely random and creative, like playing HORSE on a backyard hoop with trees hanging over the rim. Pointless yet parameter-less. The ground rules evolve as you go along, but when someone hits a shot from over the shed, it's strangely satisfying. And I appreciate the creative shots attempted on FreeDarko.

I call it strange because I totally look at the world differently and I find myself dropping Darkoisms into conversation. I feel like an unbaptized FDisciple, spreading the Pretty Good News to anyone who would appreciate pro basketball washed down with Edmund Spenser.

The And1 comparison is exactly what I was going for. And I, for one, thank my lucky stars for any place that can drop transcendent knowledge of this ilk: "Read your Pindar, bitches."

At 5/22/2006 11:11 PM, Blogger T. said...

I'm not sure my reality is ready for the idea of Mark Cuban holding LOB.* Come on winners of Clippers/Suns!

*I know there are those out there that hate my continual name dropping, but a story from my time here in Houston. I had an event that started at 7.30am and the two Rockets trophies were to make an appearance. So the 1994 and 1995 NBA Championship Trophies have spent a night in my apartment. It was probably the worst night of sleep I've ever had. Yes, I placed them right next to my bed as I slept.

**Additional note - both of the Rockets trophies are dented and scratched and beat up. When I asked about the two largest dents - they said "This one - Richard Petruska, that one, Sam Cassell"

At 5/22/2006 11:17 PM, Blogger skinny said...

getting back to basketball, I think the point was more or less made, but had the Cavs beat the Pistons, it would be too much too soon. there's many years of LBJ ahead for the city of Cleveland and for the entire sport. the fact that the Cavs took it to 7 is pretty astounding in and of itself, and works more as a teaser for the greatness to come.

which leads me to my main point: Lebron is Barak Obama. Messiah-like figures, poised to revive noble and righteous but tragically adrift movements. I can't help but draw analogies between discussions of the Cavs' future in this post-season and the very silly push for Obama's presidential run to come in 2008. and a correlation between anybody distraught and/or surprised by Cleveland's loss, and those who are outraged by Obama's moderate voting record since his election...which then makes LBJ's teammates the equivalent of Obama's political clout.

penham place stand up.

At 5/23/2006 4:06 AM, Anonymous rainbow squirt said...

1. Too bad Bron Bron and company were overcome by the Michigan Marauders. I was hoping for maximum Nike representation throughout the playoffs as a counter to all this "Reebok Classic" wackness that's been going around.

2. Der Witzkrieg rumbles on! Werner Herzog just finished filming Grizzly Man 2 starring Dirk Nowitzki: at the end, Dirk eats the damn bear.

3. Larry Brown is Lyndon Baines Johnson. The Detroit resurgence was the civil rights movement of the 60s. That drama with the Pistons last season was Brown's Gulf of Tonkin. This season has been you-know-what. All Coach Flake needs to do now is retire, move to a ranch, grow his hair out, and croak (bonus: Isaiah = Nixon!).

At 5/23/2006 10:53 AM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

i don't have the time or the energy to do a full post, but i'm of the opinion that we at freedarko need to stop bitching about the playoffs and admit that if we had known at the start of the season that the western conference finals would be mavs/suns, we'd have been pretty pleased.

on the other hand, i'm not watching heat/pistons unless there's a game 7. ugh.


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