God's Own Warning Track

If you've ever been to Oklahoma's capital, don't go. Arkansas is the truth, but this state is absolute blankened rot on earth. And this is coming from someone whose idea of a weekend jaunt is driving around the PAT. Clay Bennett is an enemy of players everywhere if he'd rather stick them in this city than Seattle, and the league should hope to god Durant isn't forced to go house shopping in these parts. Shit, the hotel we just switched out of had a four year-old out front with a broken arm, a pacifier attached to a silver cross, and a blonde mohawk. I yelled GUMMO and he insitnctively marched toward me.

Then again, I also just hit up some thrift that had racks upon rack of childhood sports shirts. Some of you may think you know me, but after today, you really don't.

I also had to go and hit the road during the fucking nuclear holocaust of NBA internet. So much has been said already, and I'm barely even close to catching up. Nate Jones, who knows enough about backroom dealings to make all the rest of us look like fools, had some deft speculation on Kobe's motives. I'm not really feeling Brooks's "P-JAX IS THE MOLE" theory, though it's a pretty soaring compliment to pay Phil. Actually, I'm glad I missed most of today, since now it's wound down and I can claim a little more permanence for whatever gets said now.

Here's what I'm taking away for it: supposedly, everyone NBA star has a price. I know, when they demand a trade there's no chance their teams will get full value. But the Iverson deal wasn't terrible. Odom and Caron for old Shaq was respectable. Even Marion and stuff for Garnett would not put anyone's honor out of business. In theory, the T-Mac swap was sound. For Kobe? Just try and come up with an offer that doesn't make the gallery chortle. Dirk straight up is a joke. Everything run through here involving Pierce, or Deng&Thabo&Hinrich, doesn't just sound unfair--they come off as purest fleece.

It's kind of like the "untradeables" in fantasy leagues. Regarding today's league, it would be Kobe, Bron, healthy Wade, and Duncan. Want a sense of how tremendous these four are? Just try and imagine any franchise living down having dealt them. I promise you, you can't.


At 5/30/2007 9:04 PM, Blogger Wild Yams said...

The Lakers are fucked, and it's really incredible that it ever got to this point. Kobe can kick and scream all he wants but that won't suddenly make the Lakers have a bunch of incredibly desirable trade pieces to magically move in exchange for a championship contending team around Kobe to start next season with. I just can't believe that Kobe didn't go to the Lakers far earlier with this, or that if he did (he probably did) that the Lakers didn't take him seriously. The Lakers will need to clean house with a blowtorch after this, whether Jerry Buss tells his son he can't run personnel anymore or whether he trades Kobe elsewhere. No wonder Jerry Buss was hammered last night.

At 5/30/2007 9:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just like everyone else I started to envision the trade scenarios.

Unlike everyone else the realization came quickly that not only would Kobe Bryant not be traded but something was amiss.

Kobe Bryant has peaked. As an NBA player, as a personality, and as an idea. His (casual) density, and reliablity, felt suddenly less than concrete. The essence of Kobe has started to dissipate like so much suffocating smoke.

At 5/30/2007 9:23 PM, Anonymous Sean said...

I really, really, really hope Kobe gets traded. As much as I don't like his personality, I don't want him to end up like KG.

Does anyone else find it curious that the traditional powers of the NBA (i.e., the Celtics, Lakers, Sixers, and Knicks) are run but complete morons?

At 5/30/2007 9:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I dislike OKC as much as the next guy (probably much more so being a Texan) but... Oklahomans read blogs too.

Really, I mean it!

At 5/30/2007 9:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is Steve Nash really tradeable? Would PHX fans ever forgive the organization for sending him away AGAIN?

At 5/30/2007 9:29 PM, Blogger Jack said...

No, but Shawn Marion is.

& Amare is the truth.

Buh bye to some combination of Shawn Marion/Kurt Thomas/Marcus Banks (even he is an upgrade over Smush)/James Jones.

At 5/30/2007 9:31 PM, Blogger Captain Caveman said...

What about Marion and the Suns' #1 this year for Kobe?

I'm so exhausted I can't even decide if that's insane or a fair swap or what.

At 5/30/2007 9:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Is Steve Nash really tradeable? Would PHX fans ever forgive the organization for sending him away AGAIN?"

I asked that because I read the article, which states:

"...Regarding today's league, it would be Kobe, Bron, healthy Wade, and Duncan. Want a sense of how tremendous these four are? Just try and imagine any franchise living down having dealt them. I promise you, you can't."

PS - Kobe is 100% not going to be traded. And he's 200% not going to be traded to the Sun.

The Lakers took a worse deal from Miami compared to what Dallas was offering for Shaq. And you think the rapist himself would end up in PHX? You guys (PHX blog fanbois) are deluded whiners.

At 5/30/2007 9:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding Jack's presentation of that dream Pheonix lineup:

Were FD or Wizznutzz the first to make this design a basketball thing, or am I mistaken?


At 5/30/2007 9:49 PM, Blogger Captain Caveman said...

Great minds, Jack.

At 5/30/2007 11:05 PM, Blogger Brown Recluse, Esq. said...

you're mistaken.

At 5/31/2007 12:45 AM, Blogger MC Welk said...

Can't wait until you hit the S.L.C. It's the crossroads. One can't avoid it. I calls the wife gummo when she's working the 10lb dumbbells like the little Mexican girl with the (Michael) diamonds. Osmonds. Ma, I didn't notice.

At 5/31/2007 1:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"And you think the rapist himself would end up in PHX? You guys (PHX blog fanbois) are deluded whiners."

Cold, but funny as hell.

At 5/31/2007 3:00 AM, Anonymous Alan in SF said...

Kobe to Seattle for Ray Allen and Seattle's #2 pick

At 5/31/2007 9:38 AM, Anonymous Bayern Munich said...

I've been reading this site for over a year, and that Sports by Brooks link was the best thing you've ever posted.
(Scroll to the bottom)

At 5/31/2007 11:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Darkofan: It is a serious threat to the stability of the League if the Lakers get hollowed out like the Knicks. The television sponsors should buy both franchises and put them in the hands of trustees to be competently run for the good of the League. Last week the NY Times had an opinion piece saying the Knicks should be given a break from the salary cap for similar collective welfare reasons, but that is not the answer. Change in control is necessary. Bradley and Corzine have been gone from the Senate for a long time, is there anyone else in Congress that would alternatively sponsor a federal eminent domain bill, allowing those franchises to be acquired through condemnation and held in public trust.

At 5/31/2007 12:57 PM, Blogger Steve said...

How many great years does Kobe have left? 3? If the Lakers aren't going to make any moves, they may as well make the best possible deal now, rather than wait for him to opt out.

I don't think he is going to adjust his game as marvelously as MJ did, and Kobe has played a lot of games since entering the NBA early.

Either the Lakers package Bynum this offseason for best help available, or Kobe gets traded this offseason. If they wait til next summer it will be a firesale.

The Laker FO is dysfunctional, I don't think Buss Sr. has given Kupcake the mandate or direction to be proactive, which is why they end up passing on each individual trade, afraid to incur any risk.

Well, they forgot that by continually not doing anything, they also incurred a risk of alienating their marquee player.

The final aspect of this is Kobe the person, and how he plays with his teammates. I'm not convinced he's a real leader. It's not a complaint, just an observation on how he strikes me as a person. MJ had a big ego too, but I believe he was willing to sublimate it to his desire to win. I'm not sure Kobe does that, or sees the distinction yet.

At 5/31/2007 1:45 PM, Blogger Wild Yams said...

I think Kobe probably has more than just 3 great years left. He is only 28, even though he's "an old 28". Jordan was still unquestionably Jordan even at 36 when he won his last title, and though some of that may be due to the 18 months he took off around age 30, it's hard to imagine Kobe suddenly falling off too much at age 31 unless he gets a major injury. Kobe is reportedly one of the hardest working players in the league and relentlessly trains, so I'm sure he'll keep in good shape and be ready to play well for years.

That said, the Lakers really are squandering what he can do by just letting his greatness sit there unaided during the absolute prime of his career. But what realistic moves can the Lakers make to suddenly put championship pieces around him? Kobe's best shot at a title now almost surely would be for the Lakers to trade him, but that's almost surely a stupid thing for the Lakers to do. The whole thing's a mess.


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