NBA discussion thread

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wuTa
last night was opening night and the piston looked as good as ever...t-mac and yao were not impressive but yaos hurt..doesnt matter though...we would have beat them with a healthy yao anyway...did anyone see the game?...every detriot player had championship belts during the ring ceremony...it was awesome plus they gave a fan a championship ring..lucky bastard....L.A was impressive in the win over Denver but noone cares about that smile

Myth
I followed what went on but didn't pay close attention. I was busy watching Bush be re-elected. big grin

Linkalicious
Detroit came out nice and impressive. I think what went wrong is they stopped doing what they do best....play defense. It seemed like they relied on their offense to outscore Houston later in the game...and that enabled Houston to catch up.

Larry Brown won't have any of that sh!t...he's too smart as a coach. They started playing Detroit basketball again and it was in the bag.


The Lakers, looked really impressive. I think they are better...as a team...than they were last year. I liked seeing the difference in maturity for Kobe. He was getting rid of the ball at the right time, to the right person, when the double team came. Last year he would dibble away from the double and not hit the open man.

Personally I feel it was more a poor performance by Denver than it was a good performance by LA, but there are a lot of games left, and a lot still needs to come together...

cal31
It was the first day of the season, you can't make any judgements from that.

koolruningz
Its sure good to have the NBA back, in New Zealand i only get a couple of games a week over here and NBA action. My team the Lakers looked good (only saw the Sportscenter hightlights). Kobe hopefully understands that he is going to have to dish the ball more because hes the only one on the Lakers whos gonna be double teamed. If the Denver game is anything to go by it not gonna be the one man team everyone was expecting. Detroit are just tough man, now Rasheed is healthy again they have a great post up scorer to go with Rip and Billups. What do you guys think of the Heat now they have Shaq? Does one man even if its Shaq improve the team that much. They got rid of 3 starters to get him but is there team that much better as a whole? I think Orlando might suprise a few people if Grant Hill stays healthy (thats a big if though).

Myth
Utah is ripping the Lakers apart right now. I love it.

wuTa
yes..without a doubt

Linkalicious
*reality sets in on Laker fan*

Sooo...this is what I have to watch the rest of the season....sad

Utah had a block party on the Lakers. They had no offense and horrible defense the whole night. It was soooo sad.

koolruningz
Im glad i didnt get that game over this side of the world. embarrasment

DanZeke25
the Sixers won there first game! Yay!

Linkalicious
am i the only one that thought to themselves....."about f*cking time!!!" when they announced the season was starting this week?

Afro Cheese
Yeah Linkalicious I was the same way. I was looking forward to this whole week with the election and basketball season starting. It was a pretty eventful week.

I am a knicks fan and even though they lost I thought they did pretty well against Minnesota. I hope they do better than they did last year though. It seemed like everything was on the right track until they traded Van Horn to Milwaukee.

koolruningz
No way man, i've been waiting since the last season ended. Even if the Lakers do have a rough season i just enjoy watching great hoops action.

Afro Cheese
I have the feeling the Lakers are going to have some trouble this year. I think they made some bad moves trying to mold their team around Kobe's needs. But hey, you win some you lose some. And I really can't see them being all that bad... but the west is pretty competitive.

koolruningz
I was just reading about David Stern saying the games are gonna be longer and have more players fouling out because of tighter officiating. The NBA seems to have set there stall out in regards to how they are gonna call the games, do you guys think that to many soft fouls are called or do you think the game had become too physical?

Afro Cheese
To a certain extend it seems like they call a lot of soft fouls, but its not all that bad. Last night it seemed to me like Minnesota was getting some bogus free throws, but I'm sure a Minnesota fan watching the same game was thinking that about the Knicks.

koolruningz
I guess all you can hope for is consistancy. As long as the calls go the same both ways. Great players always seem to get more respect from the officials (its been that way forever), but sometimes i wish they'd let the post players fight for position a bit more instead of blowing up on every bump. No fan wants the referees to decide the game (or maybe thats just me).

Afro Cheese
No it's not just you I totally agree. Sometimes it does tend to be severely one sided and it's a pain in the ass when it making your team not do well. When I went to go see the Knicks in Miami it seemed like they were calling fouls on NY any chance they got. They had 6 fouls in no time... it was really starting to get on my nerves. But generally I think the refs tend to be pretty fair.

koolruningz
Jeez man you guys in the US dont know how lucky you are being able to go and see live games. Id love to save some money and go and see a Lakers game, but its a bit hard when you live over the other side of the world and have 2 kids to take care of first. My son probably thinks having the latest Optimus Prime is far more important than me getting to the US to complete my pilgrimage. smile

Afro Cheese
Yeah Cali from NZ is a long way for a basketball game. At least you get to see some of the games on TV though. I didn't even know they got NBA games over there. Do you guys have a professional league of your own over there?

koolruningz
Yeah we do and its guite enjoyable to watch when you're cheering for your home town. But the skill level is nowhere near the NBA, the only advantage (if you can call it that) is the big men have more of an outside game because alot of teams play zones (heathens). The NBA is where its at though.

Afro Cheese
Often it's a lot more enjoyable for me to watch NCAA basketball (especially march madness) than it is for me to watch NBA games. It is just more exciting that way for some reason. The NBA is great but it's so over hyped and commercialized, I prefer college basketball for a good game. The only problem is I don't really have a college team to route and there are way too many teams for me to be able to keep up. So overall I just follow the Knicks closely and watch march madness for fun.

koolruningz
College ball seems more intense sometimes to me, maybe because they're not getting ridiculous amounts of money (yet) to play. Some NBA games it seems like they are just going through the motions, especially in the early part of the season. But its still my favourite league to watch in any sport. The playoffs rule.

Myth
No live games? Wow, I would die. In the next two weeks I'm going to watch my Blazers take on the Clippers, the Raptors, and the Rockets all for pretty cheap. big grin

Afro Cheese
Yeah last year's playoffs were alot of fun for me to watch once I got over the Nets sweeping the Knicks. I was routing for New Orleans once the knicks were out. Baron Davis is a great guard, when he won the guard's challenge thing during the All star events last year I was disappointed Marbury didn't win but I was still happy for Baron. My dad was really liking the Piston's in the playoffs last year. I can't stand the Pistons but they impressed me.

cal31
I'm going to see the Twolves vs. Heat in a week, can't wait KG vs Shaq.

koolruningz
Thanks mate, rub it in why dont ya? wink
Enjoy the game, who are you picking?

cal31
Twolves of course, hometown team.

Dr. Strangelove
The Kings have looked terrible the first two games of the season. While they've faced two good teams there is still no excuse for getting blown out both games. I just hope I'll see decent defense out of this team because if they play defense like last year they're not doing shit.

Wolf Dog
F U man.
lol jk

koolruningz
Are you a Lakers fan Wolf Dog?

DanZeke25
well for me... college and the NBA is about the same... March Madness is great... its much better though when u r rooting for a team... and i was rooting for St Joes... man was thet great... i was so pissed though when we lossed... and i started like the Pistons to from what've i've seen of them in the playoffs

Afro Cheese
When it comes to college I just route against UConn. I like to route the Tarheels sometimes because I lived in NC for 2 years one and off and they kinda feel like a home team.

When it comes to NBA I always route the Knicks first, but I also think it would be cool for the Charlotte Bobcats to have a decent season within a few years. I lived in NC when the Hornets moved to New Orleans, and I don't blame them for leaving. It was totally the city's fault, but I still hope things work out well with the Bobcats because I felt bad for all my friends who were Hornets fans when their team moved.

G.P
If you guys want we can make this thread "the Official Basketball thread", since you'don't seem to be sticking to the NBA here...

cal31
After watching the Twolves vs. Nuggets game last night, I was reminded just how much of an immature and pathetic team Denver is. They have Anthony who thinks everything should be given to him and complains when things don't go his way, they have the dumb as# Fransico Nelson, the no name player who seems to forget he is a bench player and thinks he is good enough to talk smack with KG and get in his face and on top of that, act like a 2 yr. old calling KG gay, Kenyon Martin who is just about the biggest punk in the NBA, and anybody else see the Nuggets "fan" who ran onto the court after Flip right after the game ended. Guess it just spreads throughout the whole Nugget community.

Arachnoidfreak
The NBA is going downhill.

cal31
it would be going uphill if Kobe would be in jail right now.

Sith Master X
laughing No kidding. I hate Bryant. He's the most selfish athlete I've ever seen. In fact, I've read parts from Phil Jackson's book which supposedly is coming out soon, if it hasn't already been released, and Kobe demanded that the Lakers pay for his travel expenses while going on trial, and that they supply him with his own private jet. Anyway, the Lakers did, and when Kobe got the jet, he said it wasn't good enough for him.

Don't believe me? Just read the book. I can't wait to read the full thing. Those were only clips that I read.

Myth
No. If they want to talk college, tell them to make a separate topic. We don't need these different conversations in the same topic.

Anyway, I went to the Blazer game last night and I was very impressed. Sure it was against the Clippers but everybody did what they were suppose to. Theo had 9 blocks which tied the franchise record but he really had 10. He blocked a dunk and the refs called it goaltending even though the ball was in his hands for a dunk. One block was one of the coolest I've ever seen. He jumped up, and with a full side arm swing where he hand didn't go above his head, through the ball back with a loud slap. DA hit outside shots, SAR had 22 points-8rebs-5stls, Z-Bo had 14 and 14, and Staudamire had 11 asts. Great hustle too. Ruben Patterson dived for a loose ball and in turn speared coach Cheeks into the scorers table (hurting Cheek's back that just had surgery). If Blazers play like this all season with defense being #1 priority, they could be back in the playoffs.

Myth
Damn, every team I rooted for lost today.
Seattle beat SA
Toronto beat Portland
Lakers beat Hawks

At least Theo got 6 more blocks. I'm hoping he is block champion again with a riduculous amount of blocks.

Linkalicious
Good to see Detroit finally lost. It's about time their heads swelled up a little to the point where they thought the Raptors would be a shoe in. The Raptors should be a shoe in for a team like Detroit, but it just goes to show that every game you need to come to play.

Lakers beating the Hawks is no surprise to me. Sure LA is bad, but no one is as bad as the Hawks. And they picked up A. Walker which makes them even worst. Kobe has A LOT of growing up to do this year. He spends the better part of the game complaining to refs when he forces his shots and doesn't run the offense the right way. And the rest of LA is a joke....Odem specifically. He only drives to the left hand side, and he has almost no jump shot. How is that guy even a professional? I can hit 18 foot jump shots left and right handed...seriously!

koolruningz
Even when he drives right (on those blue moon nights) he always tries to finish with his left hand (block party anyone?) Hes pretty mobile for a big man but he has no intensity. There are quite a few teams out there that the Lakers will still beat but the glory days have moved to another city for a few years (not sure which city but its not LA). embarrasment

DanZeke25
well i think the sixers are 2-2

wuTa
raptors could suprise alot of people this year...theyre 3-0 and could be for real but your right.... detriot should have won that game

Myth
Carmelo is becoming a joke. I love it. Complains about time, bad sport to other countries during the olympics, marijuana (whether his or not is in the wrong crowd), BALL HOG (went 3-20 other night and went 2-13 in the first half tonight), and tonight came in a T-shirt with the twin towers burning saying something about John Kerry shouldn't have given up, yet Carmelo admitted that he didn't vote himself. What an ideot.

wuTa
d-wade is better eek!

Linkalicious
Worst part about the Lakers is....they're huge complainers.

Like last year, they kinda got all buddy-buddy with the refs because of the caliber of their players and how long they had been in the league, but this new batch is ridiculous. Kobe and Lamar look like they're about to cry every time they don't get a call....

koolruningz
I think having Malone on their team last year cant be underestimated. Even though he has lost some of his skills, his professionalism and his experience held the team together when it could have fractured. Kobe is a great player but he has to change and grow a bit to be a great leader on his team.

DanZeke25
Yes. Dwayne Wade is better.

koolruningz
D-Wade certainly has the goods, his dunk over Jermaine O'Neal in the playoffs was my top play of last season (made me jump out of my chair)eek! If he develops an outside game he will become one of the elite point guards in the league.

Afro Cheese
D-Wade is really talented especially for this being so early in his career. The question is will he continue to get better and grow at good rate for him to become a hall of famer. I can't stand the Heat but they are an undeniable force this year.

Players I am hoping can have a good season this year are Mike Sweetney of the Knicks who was on the team last year but never a major part of the team, but looked really good in the first two games of their season this year. And Primoz Brezec of the Charlotte Bobcats who came from the Indiana pacers. His best game last year he scored 6 points. This year he has scored 35 points and had 19 rebounds in Charlotte's two games.

Myth
I'm hoping that Kirilenko will dominate all year like he is right now. I've always said that he was going to be the man and have said that in not too long he will be MVP calliber due to his scoring plus his all around defense. Looks like my prediction may come true.

koolruningz
Hes certainly started the season well. Utah are on fire at the moment and they seem to be doing it the same way Detroit did last season - smothering defense.

Myth
This is ugly, the Blazers are 14 for 62 and still winning by 1 somehow at the beginning of the forth. The Nets are 18-57.

Myth
19 for 78! That is F*CKING RIDICULOUS! Thats 24.359% from the field! We lost to the f*cking Nets! Goddamn! They better pull things together if they want to make it back to the playoffs.

wuTa
i always felt the same way...i love watching him play and he dunked right in melos face the other day but i only get to see like 2 utah games a year sad .....there is actually talk about malone coming back to utah this year...im pissed utah finaly has all this talent and a deep bench and malone and stockton arent there.....bring back the give and go!!!

koolruningz
The Stockton - Malone pick and roll was a thing of beauty. cool

Myth
Wow, what a display by Lebron. Outscoring the Suns by himself in the 4th to come back from 19 points. He had 38 pts total with 10 rebs, 6 assts, 3 blks, and 3 stls.

Too bad my Blazers suck. I'm calling it now, they WILL NOT make the playoffs. I had my hopes up, but I'm calling it now unless we make some major trade. We came into the season with pretty much the same team so they should be used to each other and we had like the easiest beginning schedule in the league. I figured that we had to win about 6 of our first 8 games because these are the only easy games we'll get for a long time. We barely beat GS, beat Clippers, then lost to Raptors, Nets, and Celtics. Horrible.

Linkalicious
Go Lakers no expression

Last night was another joke. Either they fight for a win, or they get hammered. No blow outs for the Lakers this year. Hell, even their 32 point lead went to sh!t when Kobe fouled out.

wuTa
this season is already got my blood pumping....i enjoyed the suns game last night but was disappointed they lost..im not really a suns fan but they are fun to watch when nash is running the show plus i wanted cleveland to lose...****in illhgighsldh or whatever the hell his name is...i couldnt beleive he hit that 3 mad...i also enjoyed watching seattle play...fortson reminds me of a ben wallace type player plus they have ridnour who played awesome and its always fun to watch ray allen shoot the lights out but whats up with the kings?

DanZeke25
the sixers had a good game.. they are 2-3 now... we were down by 6 with a minute left and then we get fouled... make 2 free throws.. get the ball back.. get fouled.. again 2 points.. then the nets miss 4 staright free throws and the Iverson hits a fade-away to tie it up with 7.2 too go... it wen't to over time and we won... then i watched South Park andwhen i put on the Cleveland game it was almost over

Myth
laughing Nuggets are considering bringing Carmelo in off the bench. laughing

DanZeke25
^^ lol.. really?

Myth
Yeah, but probably not anymore after the last game where he finally showed up. Anybody hear about this Ron Artest shit? The Pacers are denying it but apparently Artest asked for a month off to work on his rap album. He may even retire after this year. A little ways back he mentioned early retirement if he wins a championship and now he is really trying to push a rap career.

Linkalicious
i heard that he wanted a month off, but agreed to only 2 games off because he felt that was all he needed to re-evaluate his situation. The guy is an all-star basketball player, not a rap star. What in God's name is he doing to his team.

DanZeke25
he played good agaist the sixers last night with 29 points... but we won! that was a great game... Kyle Korver is amazing.. i can't wait to see him play in the future.. Krover hit a game tieing three and it went to overtime.. then Iverson hits his first buzzer beater winner in his career. Kyle Korver had 6 threes and 23 points. The sixers are 3-3... and wow... thats not gonna stay if we keep going down by twelve or more points every game.. yup.. we are 3-3 and we've been down by twelve or more in everygame so far.

Myth
I don't think it was really an agreement because Artest still had to show up to the games. He wanted to be able to use the time for his rap album. The benching was a punishment.

Afro Cheese
Iverson impressed me when the Sixers played the Knicks. That's the only philly game I've seen this year. He was really consistant and looked alot better than last year. I'm pretty nervous about this season... Miami, Boston, and Philly are all looking better than last year.. and the Knicks aren't. Although there line up is getting a little younger, and that's a good thing.

Myth
I went to the Blazer/Raptor game today and I was sweatin by the end. We blew a 20 point lead and Murray's 3-pointer for the tie was barely too late. I was disappointed that Carter didn't give me 1 dunk to see. In fact, he only scored 4 points in like 22 minutes or about that amount of time. He didn't play the 4th because the team was doing better without him.

koolruningz
What the hells wrong with Denver? They were being picked as a contender this year but they are having a nightmare start. Do you guys think they have a chance if the team gels or are there too many internal problems?
Dallas are looking good even though it still early days, they are scoring like crazy (no change there) but are they finally playing some defense?
Just a couple of questions to keep the thread moving. big grin

Linkalicious
nice Kool...

Umm....I think Denver's big mistake was picking up Kenyon Martin. Denver doesn't have a team leader like Jason Kidd to keep someone like Kenyon Martin in check. Not that he is a bad player, because he most certainly is very talented, i just don't think he was the missing piece to their puzzle. He's too much Show for the amount of Go that Denver has.

I still think they will jell nicely as the season coninues, and I think they will make the playoffs, but I'm starting to think that they might end up with a worst record than LA, which is contrary to my thoughts before the season started.


And Dallas is a crazy team, they're fun to watch, and they can shoot the lights out. I wouldn't be surprised if they made the playoffs as a number one or a number 2 seed, but when it all comes down to it...they won't win the Championship. Sure they can steal a game or two from Minnesota or San Antonio. But in a 7 game series I give them LESS of a chance than I gave the East last year.

(yes I'm aware that the East won, but I still contend that other teams in the West could have succeeded where LA failed in the finals)

Dr. Strangelove
Denver has had a lot of injuries with Lenard, Nene and Camby out but there are still playing like crap. Getting Martin I think neither helped them or hurt them as he's the same kind of player like Nene and Camby. Truthfully what I really think is hurting this team is no outside shooting with Lenord out for the season. I think they will improve but not make the playoffs because teams are ready for them this year which the same can be said for Memphis.

Dallas...ehh call me in a month and if they're still playing defense I'll give em props. Truthfully I can never trust Dallas because of Nellie and Dampier.

My Kings are finally starting to look better. Winning in Phoenix was huge especially since everybody including me thought they were going to lose. If they beat the Bulls on Tuesday they'll be back at .500 with 9 of the next 12 games at home so they could start a good winning streak.

It's been painful to watch Webber this season. He's moving better than in the playoffs last year wear he made Shawn Bradley look like Dirk Nowitzki in terms of mobility but he's still only 80% percent on that leg. He's is still busting his ass on the court, but its just sad to see a player a shell of himself because of injuries.

koolruningz
Yeah i remember reading about K-Mart coming to Denver to be the leader but he never really struck me as much of a leader in NJ. I havent been able to see any Dallas games yet but i think they are showing them later in the month (the NBA coverage in NZ ESPN is appalling). I havent seen a Lakers game yet this season but that might be a good thing. How many games to you guys in the US get on TV a week?

Linkalicious
a ridiculous amount.

Last season I had the NBA ticket and watched more basketball than I ever want to watch again.

This year I have Tivo, so now I watch anything that's televised. And the best news of all....TNT and ESPN now come in HDTV for me. So now almost everything I watch is in High Definiton...which is THE SH!T

koolruningz
Ive always liked C-Webb, some players have their chance at greatness only to be cut down by injuries Grant Hill and LJ spring to mind. Hopefully Webber can overcome his injury and get back to being one of the best PFs in the league.

koolruningz
drooliodrooliodroolio

Dr. Strangelove
Yeah injuries are one the sucky things is sports. I don't think Webber can every be one of the best power forwards again with his quickness and explosovness pretty much gone but he still be a good one as he still has a good jump shot, and there is not a better passing power forward in the game. If he can put up 18-9-5 I'll be happy.

In terms of games I've seen well the Kings finally signed a deal with Comcast so they can finally show all 84 games. The Kings was only able to show 60 games a season the last couple of years because they signed a shitty broadcast deal when they were a shitty franchise. I've seen a couple of NBA games as I'm trying to lay off sports for a couple of weeks because I watched so much baseball this summer my head was about to explode. I'll really start watching lots of games after the All-Star break when the playoff chases start.

koolruningz
So far in NZ we have had a grand total of 2 games on ESPN. I got satellite TV so i could watch a decent amount of NBA games, so its not going quite as i planned. I am relying on NBA.com and you guys more than ESPN.

DanZeke25
i just watch the games that are on TV and most of the Sixers games. I missed the last one though. I think they won 96-87 to orlando.

and remember i said this. Kyle Korver will win the 3 point competition this year. I repeat, Kyle Korver will win the the 3 point competition this year. And if he doesn't then he will win the next year. well, he will win one in his career, but i think he is going to win it this year.

Let's Go Sixers!!!!!!!!

Myth
Denver - Problem = Carmelo, not K-Mart. Carmelo is becoming more and more selfish (ie. Kobe). He apparently is tough to coach because he doesn't listen. We first really heard of this in the Olympics. But I hear this year he is breaking apart from plays in the middle of them so "he" can score. Thats all the guy cares about. He is also the cause of K-Mart's lack of production for this same reason. I think Detroit right about now is sighing in relief that they didn't nab him over Darko because Darko, as unproductive as he is, is not a tumor to a team like Carmelo is. Carmelo is good, but not as good as he thinks he is. Put him on a crap team, he will shine and improve them. Surround him by better players, and he'll still take control and lead them to about the same amount of wins as him on a crap team because either way, it will be him doing everything and not allowing others to help improve the team.

Dallas - If they can continue with strong defense, they will thrive because their offense is already set. If they start to slack off, they will look like the Mavericks of the last 4 years.

koolruningz
Thats really interesting about 'Melo. I hadnt heard about his selfishness, it can be very detrimental to a team if you got someone just out to get his. Denver have a strong team on paper but it goes to show that doesnt mean jack if you havent got the right team spirit (e.g. the Jazz or Pistons). I agree he is a good player but i wouldnt put him in my top 10 yet, he's got alot to learn.

wuTa
he almost won it last year...no offense but thats not really going out on a limb


yea detroit fans arent upset about missing out on melo...he's not a team oriented guy and and the pistons biggest strength is playing as a team...i am pissed at missing out on wade though..we could have him and have prince come off the bench...thats just scary thinking about it

Denver-i was wathing TNT and barkley and his crew talked about denver and i they were right on what they said...andre miller isnt a true point guard hes a 2 not a 1...they play better with boykins on the court...all of there best players pretty much play the same position....they switched to a half court offense which is one reason why melo has struggled

koolruningz
I think Detroit had a great back court with Billups and Rip, very underrated. Do you mean Detroit would have played Rip at 3, Billups at 2 and D-Wade at point?
I think Andre Miller is a decent point guard, he would struggle against some of the elite shooting guards in the league (like T-Mac, Kobe and The Truth). Earl Boykins was great for them last year coming off the bench, im not sure if he would make the same impact as a starter. I'd love to see a game on TNT if they have Charles on, he is one of my favourite commentators.

wuTa
rip at 3 wade at 2 (he's a natural 2) and billups at 1
miller is a 2 he's better shooter than passer....boykins distributes the ball better and is just as good as a defendor as miller and it shows...when boykins is on the floor denver is playing better than when miller is at the point

koolruningz
I must admit i havent seen Denver play this season, im going by last season so i'll take your word for it. Its a shame that Miami doesnt have a PG so Wade could play the 2, but his outside game needs a little work dont you think?

wuTa
i agree...wades outside shot does need work but you have to agree that his athleticism more than makes up for it

koolruningz
Oh god, he is one of the best althletes in the NBA. I'd love to see him in the dunk contest.

Myth
I thought this was a cool little thing from ESPN.com's Page 2:

Q: Who looks like the best team right now?
The Spurs. And not because of Duncan, or because Ginobili seems determined to have one of the best per-minute average seasons in recent memory, or because they have a bench with legitimate NBA guys who know what they're doing (Brent Barry, Devin Brown, Malik Rose, Big Shot Rob). With the exception of Barry, these guys have been playing together for awhile now -- and Barry has always been one of those Philip Seymour Hoffman types who can mesh with anyone else in the cast, regardless of the circumstances. They play well together. Much like the Pistons last year.


But this raises a larger issue: With so many teams dumping coaches, making panic trades and wasting money on shaky free agents -- it's like 80 percent of the league at this point -- the teams that keep building around the same nucleus (one bona fide star, four or five supporting stars, one coach) have an enormous competitive advantage over everyone else. It's almost like running a good TV show. Take "Cheers," for example. They built the first two seasons around Sam and Diane, with Coach, Carla, Norm and Cliff as the supporting characters. Eventually, they brought in Frasier for Season 3; Woody showed up after Coach died in Season 4. After Season 5, Diane left just as her character was getting stale, but Rebecca came in and invigorated the show.


Here's what you had in Season 1: Sam, Diane, Coach, Carla, Cliff, Norm.


Here's what you had in Season 6: Sam, Rebecca, Woody, Carla, Cliff, Norm, Frasier, Lilith.


You could make the case that "Cheers" went from "genuine show" to "straightforward sitcom" after Coach died -- in fact, I made that argument a few years ago. But the heart of the show never really changed. Which is how a basketball team should operate. When the subject of NBA problems comes up, everyone points to poor shooting, over-reliance on three-point line, overzealous defense, high schoolers ... to me, the lack of continuity is THE biggest problem in the sport right now. None of these teams knows how to play together for more than four-minute stretches. Of course a team like San Antonio will win 60 games. Why wouldn't they?


(Note: Comparing "Cheers" to the Spurs, Sam was obviously Tim Duncan and Diane was David Robinson, making Rasho Rebecca -- a great comparison because Rebecca couldn't hold Diane's jock, just like Rasho wasn't in Robinson's class. Coach was Avery Johnson, making Woody Tony Parker. Frasier was like the Ginobili addition -- right down to the "Making The Leap after a few seasons" part. Carla was Gregg Popovich, right down to the looks. Norm was the revolving crunch-time swingman, whether it was Sean Elliott, Stephen Jackson, or Barry this season. And Cliff was Bruce Bowen -- annoying and flawed, but necessary nonetheless. By the way, it took me about an hour to figure that all out ... and I'm not even sure why it just happened. Let's just move on.)

Dr. Strangelove
Bill Simmons is God.praypray

koolruningz
Comparing Brent Barry to Philip Seymour Hoffman is spot on. I've only seen one Spurs game this year and they struggled against Miami minus Wade. But no doubt they are a class act and come play-off time I'm picking Spurs and T'Wolves in the conference finals.

cal31
Oh man, the Twolves owned the Heat last night. Surprise surprise, KG once again had a easy 20 20 game, and Eddie Griffin looks like he is going to be a solid player in the league finally. About the Spurs, I can't believe so many people are hyping them up, they are my most overrated team of the year. They have Duncan, and Ginobili and two very good players, and Parker who is a solid player but inconsistent, but beyond that they don't have much off the bench. Barry is not close to being a solid player, Rasho is lost half the time, and Bowen is good defensively and inconsistent offensively, Rose is the only player that will be good coming off the bench, other than Bowen for D. I don't know how that adds up to being the best team in the league over Detroit, Minnesota, or even the Pacers.

koolruningz
I still think come playoff time they'll make the conference finals. Brent Barry doesnt have to be a star, he just needs to hit the three on a consistant basis. Their bench isnt the best in the league, but its up there and with their team defense and Duncan/Ginobli combo that might be enough. But if KG keeps playing like the MVP he is then I think the T'Wolves may take it to the finals. Alot can happen in a season though with injuries and whatnot, should be interesting to see which teams gel and with teams crumble.

Dr. Strangelove
You forgot to mention that the Spurs minus the Pistons have the best defense in the NBA which will become huge for them since Shaq is out of the west and the rest of the competition in the west ie T Wolves Kings, Dallas, Suns, Lakers are all jump shooting teams.

"Barry not close to being a solid player" What? Barry one of the best three point shooters in the league, a decent defender, a good passer, a decent driver and a perfect fit for the Spurs system with all the open looks from Duncan.

Rasho might be lost half the time but at least he's not lost all the time like the Kandy Man. laughing out loud

I'll give you the Pistons, but I have more faith in the Spurs than the T Wolves or Pacers. I don't have faith that Sam Cassel can stay healthy for the entire season and playoffs, I don't have faith in a jump shooting team winning it all or the Kandy Man winning a NBA title as the basketball gods won't allow it.

I don't think that J O'neal has the psyche to take over a game and he would be creamed by Duncan if they me in the Finals or that Artest has pretty much worn out his welcome.

To me the Spurs are a much safer pick than either the T Wolves or the Pacers.

cal31
Even if Cassell isn't healthy, they have Thud who averaged 20 a game vs. the Lakers in the playoffs, and they have Anthony Carter who is a very solid defender.
Kandi is a much better player than Rasho, I've seen them both play for the Wolves and Kandi is a definetely a step above him. He's a better rebounder and plays much better D. I think Barry is overrated and I've never thought he was that good, but that is my personal opinion, but overall I think the Spurs are a very good team, I just don't think that they're the clear cut number 1 team in the league right now. I can see where you are coming from saying they're the safer pick, which is probably true, but if either the Pacers or Wolves get it all going, I think they could win it all.

wuTa
i just picked up ron artest Allure Cd..its awesome....i could see why he wanted to take a month off to promote such a musical masterpiece

Dr. Strangelove
Hudson is sick, but to me they both have to be healthy so the Spurs can't focus on just one player. If the T Wolves can have both healthy then the T Wolves are the better team, but I just don't see it happening with Cassel a year older.

I guess we will have to agree to disagree about Rasho and Barry.

I do agree with your that the Spurs are not clear cut favorites like the media has put them out to be. What really will decide the Spurs chances is if they can get anything out of that rookie point guard as it killed them last year when they didn't have Speedy to sub when Parker would go in the tank. I just think Spurs have something that no other western team has which is a suffocating defense and as the old saying goes "defense wins championships".

cal31
Yeah, I heard it was pretty good, not quite the norm for athletes turned rappers, aka Shaq, Deion

Linkalicious
Troy Hudson is far from consistant, and using his 20 points/per game against the Lakers in an arguement is ridiculous.

The Lakers major weakness throughout their entire championship run, all the way through last season has been their ability to contain guards.

Chauncy Billups and Rip Hamilton killed them. Manu Ginobili and Toni Parker tore them up. Bibby eats them alive regularly. Hell, even little Earl Boykins beats the sh!t out of the Lakers.

Brent Barry is possibly the 2nd most well rounded player on the Spurs. Ginobili is the only one preventing him from taking the title. Barry can play good defense, especially reading passing lanes. He's a good point guard for when Parker is out, and can run the offense even with Parker in. He's a great 3 point shooter, great free throw shooter, and an excellent passer.

and as the good Dr. put it....the basketball Gods will not allow Oliwakandi to win a championship. He doesn't belong in the league.


and WuTa....you've got to be kidding me. You actually bought the album?

Even if it's good....I'd never promote his singing career while he's like the best one on one defender in the league.

koolruningz
What sort of music does Artest make?

koolruningz
Did anyone see the Heat/Bucks game yesterday? Thats the one game i've seen this week with the GREAT coverage in NZ. D-Wade was amazing, he is fast becoming my favourite player. He made an over the head pass to Shaq in the 3rd quarter that defied description. I saw highlights of the Magic/Jazz, its great to see Grant Hill back to some sort of form. Its not easy to score 32 on Kirilenko and Francis is playing some great ball to. On a personal note its always great for me to see the Lakers win, even if it was against the Clipppers. Kobe had 11 assists, which is what the Lakers need if they are going to win some games this year. Finally did i hear right that the Sonics made more 3s than 2s in a game?

Linkalicious
Kobe's allie oop was out of control when you put it in slow motion. He caugt the pass from Chuckie Atkins with one hand, reaching back behind his head. The ball was like 6 or 7 ft from the basket when he caught it with his right.

Wade actually had a pretty bad game last night. He couldn't hit a free throw for the life of him, and he's almost a bit too emotional on the court. After he missed one free throw, he sat there shaking his head. Then he just kept getting more angry with more misses.

Almost no one plays good when they are mad. You should never let your emotions get the better of you on the court.

koolruningz
Wades a pretty good free throw shooter to. Whats up with Shaq's free throws? He's been playing ball all this time with the best coaches and he still cant throw it in the ocean. I missed Kobes alley oop, do you think it could be on the 10 ten plays of the week?

Linkalicious
most certainly...

Unless there is some really good plays this week. If anything, i would think football would ruin his chances for making the top 10.

koolruningz
eek! eek! eek!
I just saw Kobe's jam on ESPN.com. Dayum i thought he had a sore foot.

DanZeke25
koolruningz.. yes the Sonice had more 3's than 2's in one game... i would know.. being as a iwatched them hit three after three against the Sixers

Dr. Strangelove
Looks like Vince is going to Portland.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=1926133

koolruningz
Thats unheard of...until now i guess. Sorry you had to watch the 6ers go out like that. Do you think they'll make the playoffs?

Sith Master X
Wow, never expected Vince would go to the Blazers.

wuTa
hell yea i bought it!!....i bought 6 of them and i'm going to give them away for christmas...actually i didnt but if i had the money i would just to see the expressions on people's faces when they see they now own ron artests cd...i justed wanted to see how everyone would react


and carter cant become a trailblazer...he doenst smoke pot...everyone knows if your gonna become a blazer you have to smoke pot and get a pulled over by the cops at least once

wuTa
R&B...he owns his own label.....look out puff daddy here comes ron artest!!!

Myth
I hope the deal comes true. Carter could be fun and a move could just rejuvenate him. Come on, come to the Blazers.

*SpunkiE*
Did anyone just watch the Pacers vs Pistons game? laughing laughing laughing laughing

Linkalicious
That was one of the funniest things I think I've ever seen in basketball.

Artest got what he deserved for laying on the table like a dumbass, but in turn....the fan got what he deserved for messing with someone who could easily pummel him.

*SpunkiE*
Yeah... that fan shoulda known what his punk ass woulda been gettinboxed

wuTa
detroit baby detriot!!...actually that was crazy...that went from from crazy to funny to the ugliest thing i've seen in basketball....i was dying when artest was lying on the table and than put on some headsets to commentate....he went in the stands like a bat out of hell though and i think he went after the wrong guy....some dude landed alot of shots on artest but artest was being held down after like the 4th shot artest just got up and get the hell out of there but o'neal leveled some dude on the other end of the court which was kind of funny that dude must of been drunk as shit to think he could take o'neal....than the dude he landed the shots on artest went after him on the court......and the dude wasnt goin to win that battle...not one on one.....****in crazy!!!

cal31
man what a piece of no good low life, [email protected] as$, dumb piece of shi% motherfuc#ker those Detroit Piston fans that threw things at the players are. Stay in your seet and don't throw a drink on a player because it makes you feel macho in your sorry as$ life. Ron Artest doesn't deserve the blame at all. He was laying on the scorers table and restraining himself from fighting. How can you say he was being a dumbas$ for doing that when he got ridiculed for being such an aggressive player, and now when he restrains himself, he still gets ridiculed, that's bullshi$. Stephan Jackson is now one of my favorite players in the league. The way he backed up his teammate and laid into that one fan, that's what a teammate is, sticking up for your guys no matter what. Sorry for the flamming, but those fans are just a disgrace to humanity and it just a shame there are such pieces of [email protected] in the world.

wuTa
the b*tch of it was artest went after the wrong guy..and the guy that did throw the drink landed like 4 shots on artest....could you imagine being the dude artest went after

"oh shit that dude just nailed artest with his drink, artest is going to kill him...no wait....he passed him....oh sh!t"

cal31
even if it wasn't the guy, he deserved it just for being an idiot and cheering and jumping up and down like he was because Artest got hit with the cup.

wuTa
no he didnt

Cinemaddiction
I guess you missed the part where Artest clotheslined Ben Wallace, with 52 seconds left, and the Pacers up by 14 points? Wallace retaliated, and that's what started it all. Artest got what he deserved, including the lawsuits both he and his buddy Jermaine O' Neal get. Artest is a loose cannon, and a liability.

As for the fans, what's what the double standard? Artest shows he has another screw loose and maliciously takes someone out, then tries to play innocent and that's ok? Then you encourage fellow players to nail fans in the face, but when the fans stand up for their team, they are to blame? I would have done the same thing. Players DO NOT interfere with fans no matter what.

Dr. Strangelove
What? did you even watch it. It was a hard foul by Artest no doubt, but it wasn't a flagrant and Wallace overreacted to it.

Again did you even watch the highlights, or are you speaking out of your ass. It was the fans who threw debres at Artest to escalate the problem. It was the fans who threw chairs and soda's at players. It was the fans who went on the court looking to fight.

It was a ugly situation, but I'm sorry, I didn't see anything that the players did wrong. Players have to protect themselves and if a fan looks like he's looking to fight, whether or not he's is going to fight, the players first intention is to knock him out, it's self defense.

Artest didn't do anything different than any other NBA player.

forumcrew
one pacer did something wrong jackson i believe went in with artest and punched a guy in the face who def never touched jackson and hes gonna have a fat lawsuit coming his way because of it...

while the foul wasnt that hard..you have to look at the cirumstances.. they had a large lead with 50 seconds to go, the teams have a lot of emotion against each other and he def intended to foul him.. so while it wasnt a really serious hit on him it could very easily be considered flagrant because a flagrant foul is an intentional and harder then needed..

also saying he clotheslined him is rediculous you mine as well say you didnt watch the game cause it wasnt anywhere nere that

Myth
Ok, couple things on the fight.

1. Artest is an as-shole. Not just from tonight but it didn't help. Artest had the right to be pissed at the guy who through the cup but he went too far. He is a massive guy compared to the kid he went after, plus how would he know that was the guy. There was no way for Artest to know from the angle he was laying down (i watched the close up version over and over on ESPN Motion). The guy he attacked was attacked because of whatever the hell he said verbally because Artest didn't see who threw it (plus it was just a cup for godsake). The guy was an ass and should be punished but an Artest beatdown was not the way. I'd love to see him suspended for a year and give him plenty of time for his shit CD but he'll probably just get like 10 game suspension (the pitcher who threw a chair into the stands only got a few games in MLB).

2. Cal- couple things. "even if it wasn't the guy, he deserved it just for being an idiot and cheering and jumping up and down like he was because Artest got hit with the cup." I would have been jumping up and down from all the excitement. Hell, we all would because fights are entertaining. Does that mean we should get an Artest beatdown? No.
I do give him props for his "initial" restraint, but attacking the fans was too far.
Jackson is one of your favs for attacking fans in defense of Artest? Its no longer defending somebody when you start boot-stomping a guy (he did actually boot-stomp the buddy of the guy that Artest attacked).

3. wuTa- Just a correction on some of the parts of the fight. When Artest got back on the court, that is when a guy in a Piston rep-jersey jumped up to Artest. His hands were down but the way he jumped at Artest implied that he was there to fight so Artest slugged him. The guy went down a couple seconds later. The clip I saw broke off for a moment (not sure how long), but that was the SAME guy that Jermaine punched. Jermaine came from nowhere and punched the guy as people were helping him up and Jermaine went into a skid on his knees. (Dr. S. Are you sure chairs were thrown? I didn't see it in ANY of the clips I saw and I didn't read anything about chairs either. Plus most chairs are bolted into the ground in the NBA, most).

4. Artest's foul was a flagarant but not a bad one. I didn't watch the whole game leading up to the fight so I have no idea how heated things were leading up to this. Big Ben's push to the neck was way uncalled for. Like I said, this is where I give props to Artest for not really getting involved (at this point, not later).

5. Sounds like nobody is expected to be charged with anything but I hope they still will.

6. That was F*CKING AWESOME and I'm glad Reggie wasn't involved since he is injured.

Did anybody see Wade tonight as well? That guy is awesome.

cal31
and did you miss the part where Wallace way overreacted and started it all. Yes it was a hard foul, but you're taught in Basketball, when someone drives to the lane, if you're gonna foul them make sure they don't get the shot off. A flagrant foul would've been if Artest would've shoved him to the ground. If you call that malicious, than every single person that's played basketball plays maliciously. I just hate how can you bash Artest now? People think he's an idiot and too emotional when he got in fights all the time on court, now Wallace starts a fight with him and Artest just backs aways and stays out of the fight and he still gets blamed. How does that work? It doesn't that's the thing. Just because he is an NBA player means nothing. Any man would've done the same thing in that situation and for people to say they would've done otherwise is just plain stupid. How were the fans standing up for their team? The fight had cooled down and was getting under control then some idiot decides to throw a cup and start it all. Fans have no right to "stand up" for their team. That's the problem with some fans today, they think they are part of the team. Keep in your seats and don't get involved, it is not your fight or your place to do anything. The fans got what they deserved and they deserved to be punished much more.

wuTa
first let me see i may be the only detriot fan who likes artest...i know he's dirty and an ******* but you cant match his intestinty and i dont blame him for goin in the crowd but that foul was as dirty as his reputaion...it defintly wasnt the hardest foul in the world but it definetly was hard...your taught to make sure the go doesnt get his shot off but your not taught to push the back off his head with your forearm and your taught not to make stupid fools like that when you already have the game won like he did plus who knows what artest said to wallace during the game

"Any man would've done the same thing in that situation and for people to say they would've done otherwise is just plain stupid."

do you remember the detroit bad boys...everytime they went to chicago or boston they had shit thrown on them or were spit at and not once did they ever go in the crowd...i'm not saying artest was wrong because i probly would've did the same thing he did but dont say everyone would have done the same thing because not everyone would have

myth-i dont think it was the same guy o'neal slugged the one guy jumped at artest on the court than artest throw some shots than another guy ran on the court and thats when o'neal popped the other guy which was awesome that was almost as good as when tinsley come out of the locker with a dustpan...wtf is he gonna do with a dustpan?... and a chair was thrown.... i missed wade sad

Cinemaddiction
I watched it atleast 3 times, and it was INDEED flagrant. He literally hacked his head off, and to claim otherwise is ludicrous.

It was Artest that took out another player with his antics, and then tried to play innocent. Some drunk jackass threw a beer, and Artest deserved it. This isn't the first time people in any sport have thrown things onto the field of play.

Players have to "protect themselves" from fans that are 20 feet away? Bullshit. All he had to do was run off the court, but no. He and 2 other players felt the need to get into the stands and pummel people, including the wrong guy. When they chose to attack the fans, it became personal. It's ****ing DETROIT! What do you expect for them to do? Shake your hand and accept your apology? Hell no.



Yep, punching out fans is common in the NBA, right? roll eyes (sarcastic)



You don't need to lecture me, as I played organized basketball for about 12 years. Artest had no reason for hacking him, given the lead and time elapsed. None.



If you're referring to my comments, it looked to me as if he were trying to play innocent. He snapped. Artest got his come-uppance, and since the NBA failed to solve his anger management issues, a fan gave him a one way ticket out of Indiana, by Artest showing his true colors. This isn't the first time he's snaped like this.



You're right! Just because he's an NBA player doesn't mean he should retain his composure, run off the court, and let the police deal with it. Instead, why not go knock out some fans, throw my NBA career given my sordid past, get ANOTHER teammate to knock out some guys and have fun with it?

Afterall, NBA players are the golden children of sports,. Not that they need to work on their reputation. It's nothing but a G-thing here in the NBA.

All that said, I don't condoan what either the fans or the players did. Everyone's behavior was uncalled for, but again so was Artest's overall behavior. Again.

Cinemaddiction
Looking at the footage again, it looked as if Artest pushed Wallace with one hand, with the other near his head, in what appeared to be a hack.

Linkalicious
I'm not going to bother reading the rest on this page...

What Artest did to Wallace was NOT a flagarant foul. Wallace went up for a dunk, and Artest fouled him hard enough to make him miss....plain as that. It's what Kurt Rambis, Bill Lambier, Charles Barkley, and SEVERAL other competitive players would have done. Hell, if it was Karl Malone...Malone would have probably hacked Wallaces arm right off. He didn't blatantly push him in the back or take a swing at him...he agressively went for the ball.

Wallace extremely over reacted and should have just let the foul go, but being the player Artest is....I'm sure that push was for more than just the foul at the end of the game. I'm sure Artest was on Wallaces nerves all night long.

Artest should get a game suspension just for going over and laying on the scorers table....let alone what followed.

Even if he did the right thing by backing away from the fight, he's a complete moron and he deserves to have shit thrown at him for laying on the scorers table at the Palace. I mean, this is Detroit baby...maybe in Utah you can get away with that shit, but Artest got what I expected from some drunk, rowdy Pistons fans.

What Artest did to the fans by jumping up in the stands was uncalled for. It was far from self defense...it was just flat out retaliation. And it showed that he really hasn't changed from who he is in the past.

If security didn't have to spend so many resources on holding back the players, then I think there's a good chance a lot of the purpatrators in the crowd could have gotten arrested. Instead, it takes 9 security guards to calm down a rampaging Jermaine O'Neal....and several more to stop Artest and Jackson.

I just wish some big kickass fans would have been there to beat the sh!t out of the players because that will teach you not to go wandering off into another teams stands....especially in Detroit.

The chair throw was just ugly...that's Euro football shit.

cal31
does anybody know who threw the chair? Was it a fan or a player?

wuTa
did you see what happened to fred jones?...i guarentee you thats the last time he's going into the stands.....even if that foul wasnt flagront it was still uncalled for...the game was over..you could make the case that wallace overreacted but this is the same guy that jacked rip hamilton in the face last year and didnt even get a foul called on him....he may get away with cheap shots on hamilton but if you try anything remotely similar like that on either wallaces you better expect a reaction

Myth
Couple more things:

It was a flagarant: If you foul that hard without going for the ball, it is a flagarant. Artests forarm hit Ben in the head and his hand was still about 3 feet from the ball so I don't see how anybody could call it a play on the ball. They do say, if you are going to foul, make sure they don't make the shot, but you have to make a play on the ball, otherwise it is a flagarant.

Again, Artest can only be defended so much. Ben Wallace should have been mad for the foul, but the fight between players has to be blamed on him for his overreaction. Same goes with Artest and the fans. Artest had the right to be mad, but he is to blame for that part of the fight because of his overreaction to a cup being thrown. Ben should have went to the refs about Artest, and Artest should have went to security about the fan. Wallace should be suspended for starting the player fight but Artest should be suspended more for starting the fan fight. I keep on hearing about Artest's "restraint" but I see two situations here. He restrained himself only during one of the situations, the other, he overreacted big time.

The chair: Ok, I finally saw a clip with the chair. Looks like it was thrown at Jermaine.

wuTa: After reviewing, you were right, it wasn't the same guy but it wasn't on the other side of the court either. Artest punched a guy with a Detroit jersey and a hat. His buddy (also wearing a Detroit jersey) tried to grapple Artest to get him away from his buddy. That guy was pulled down and some guy in a suit (a player?) punched down at him. When that guy (the friend of the guy who got hit by Artest) was standing up (and talking shit) Jermaine came flying in for the punch.

I was also wrong about the guy that Jackson attacked. It was the same guy that Artest attacked, he just popped up a couple feet over so it seemed like somebody else.

The Fred Jones thing was bad too. He watched one of his teammates get punched and he only tried to pull that guy away. Another HUGE fan from behind him took a hook at the side of his head and then kept going after him. That guy should be arrested on the spot.

cal31
yeah, that fat guy that hit Jones was waiting behind the scorers table as soon as the fight started, and he was caught on tape doing it so he definetely should get something.

ElectricBugaloo
Is it too early to declare Grant Hill the comeback player of the year? 28 points against the six man PAcers squad,.

He's averaging 20 pts and 6 rebounds a game.

Dr. Strangelove
I would say so, it's a great story especially since the Magic will make the playoffs with that great back court of Franchise, Mobley and Hill.

koolruningz
Grant Hill is on fire at the moment. He is one of the class acts in the league on and off the court, he certainly deserves all the praise thats coming his way. Howard is playing well to, his scoring will come in time but in the meantime he is still making contributions on the other end of the floor. Looks like so far the Magic are benifiting more from a trade that seemed to be made for the Rockets.

DanZeke25
Honestly, i think they will make the playoffs, we are in 1st with a 4-5 record.. and we are in a weak division... i think we should win the division, but thats my opinion, heres the standings

Philadelphia
4-5
Boston
3-4
Toronto
4-6
NY Knicks
3-5
NJ Nets
2-7

and as for the fight, wow, just wow.

ElectricBugaloo
The suspensions:
Artest--rest of season
O'Neal--30 games
Jackson--20 games
Wallace--6 games
Anthony Johnosn--5 gaves
Indiana's Reggie Miller, and Detroit's Chauncey Billups, Elden Campbell and Derrick Coleman--all one game

wuTa
those suspensions are bullshit and this is coming from a hige piston fan...if it was anyone besides artest i doubt they would be done for the season...you got jackson and o'neal mixed up...jackson got 30 and o'neal got 25...o'neal doesnt even deserve a suspension....and i have no idea how miller, cambell, billups, and coleman got a suspension....stern is a ****in moron....i'd like to throw a beer in his face and see what he does

ElectricBugaloo
they were justified. Clearly justified.

O'Neal sucker punched that one guy on the court, and that is one of the most enduring images of the brawl. So Stern had to suspend him. How can you say that someone charging into the stands and inciting a mini-riot DOESN'T warrant a full season suspension? Spreewell got it after choking his coach, and obviously attacking fans is worse than attacking your coach.

These suspensions were justified and could ahve been worse.

Dr. Strangelove
Damn I wrote out a huge thing and my laptop AOL got disconnected.

I'll just say that compared to what Artest got for going into the stands looking for the fan that hit him to what that Texas Pitcher did in Oakland with throwing a chair into the stands with knowing that kids were in the stands and only getting the rest of the year when the baseball season was pretty much over is bush league. Artest should have gotten many games, a whole season, I don't agree with that.

Also I really don't like Steven A. Smith, but he made a good point two nights ago when he said if they're big suspension, it's going to upset the players association. A lockout for the NBA is becoming more of a reality as we speak.

wuTa
that guy that that was on the court had no right to be on the court...thats common sense...you dont go on the court...you no what happens when you gon on a (american) football field..if your lucky you'll only get tackled by a linebacker and noone suspends or fines the linebacker for doing so....actually attacking your coach isnt worse than attacking a fan who just threw a cup of beer in your face....i dont know why spreewell choked his coach but i know he had less justification than artest did...the fan who threw the cup incitied the riot...when you throw a cup of beer at some espicially someone like artest what do you think he;s gonna do?....say "nice arm"...i'm not saying artest doenst deserved to be suspended i'm saying that david stern suspensions are ridicolous...i mean he even suspended players who werent involved...i dont remember reggie or billups being involved in the stands or mixing it up with anyone...they were just caught up in the chaos

cal31
This is complete bull. I expected, although I don't agree with, Artest getting the season long suspension. But O'neal getting that long of suspension for hitting a fat assed mexican who had no right being on the court, and Stephan Jackson getting that long of suspension for protecting his teammate, and on top of that, the dumbass that started it all Ben Wallace only getting 6 games, unbelievable. Stern better be prepared because the players union is gonna womp his ass in court on this and he deserves it for being this ignorant. If the fans that were throwing things and punches and coming onto the court get off lighter than the players do, that will make it a total injustice.

wuTa
smile Big Ben is DA MAN

koolruningz
As far as i know the suspensions for 1 game are for coming on to the court (during the players fight), much like Artest's suspension last season. I feel Artest's punishment was a little harsh, but i think its got alot to do with his reputation. From what i saw the only clean punches were landed by Jackson and O'Neal (who flattened that dude in the Pistons jersey). Artest is volatile no question and im pretty sure that "fan" knew that when he aimed that drink at him. I must admit to finding the look on the guy Artest first singled out amusing, the way he is just goes from cheering to "shit he's coming for ME". When all said and done David Sterns word is final in the NBA and the only ones who really get hurt are the Pacers (by losing their 2 best players, one for the season the other for 30 games). The "fans" involved even if they have their season tickets revoked dont really lose much, they've just made the Pistons job a bit easier.

ElectricBugaloo
The guy that O'Neal punched was getting up from being knocked down by Artest, and made no move to attack O'Neal. O'Neal sucker punched him, pure and simple.

koolruningz
I saw Artest take a couple of swings at him and miss but i thought O'Neal ko'd him as Artest was being dragged away. If they both nailed him hes probably still unconscious.

wuTa
they were two different people...artest laid someone out and his buddy rain on the court, he tripped or something but by the time he gets is when o'neal pops him....myth explained it better in the 04/05 thread...but they were two different people..they guy o'neal punched was a different guy than artest punched

wuTa
i dont know if stern is going to have the final say in this....like Doc S and Cal said the players union is definetly going to fight those suspensions

koolruningz
What do you think they'll do? Do they have alot of power? Sorry i dont know much about the unions in the NBA.

wuTa
they have some power....the players can have a walkout and not play (which is unlikely)

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