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Opportunity Costs

Posted: December 13, 2012 by dontbeskerritt in Just Turrible, NBA
Tags: , , ,

Washington Wizards v Houston RocketsBy now, if you are one of the few Wizards fans that haven’t blown their head off, you may have heard about the trade that wasn’t.  As reported by the Washington Post, the Wizards were offered James Harden just for Bradley Beal and Chris Singleton.  The reason the trade was nixed was because Ted Leonsis, the owner, refused to give Harden a max deal which is around 5 years/$80 million.  Now all of these rumors could very well just be hype.  There were rumors of Harden coming to Washington during the draft.  Other teams were also in the mix like the Pacers and Warriors.  And in reality, the package that the Rockets offered the Thunder was better than the Wizards’ so who knows if the Thunder would have signed off on it.  But hear me out on this.

It’s rare that you see what the price would be to make a trade.  For example, remember when there were Gilbert Arenas for Kobe Bryant rumors during the Smush Parker years out west.  At the time, many Wizards did not want to make that trade because they felt Arenas was ascending and Kobe was descending in superstardom.  Looking back now, if the Lakers had really offered that trade, if they even picked up the phone just to kick some ideas, every Wizards fan would jump on it!  That’s called opportunity cost.  What is the price of the next best alternative.  So going back to this Harden trade, to be fair, most fans in October (including myself) would say that Leonsis was right that Harden was not worth the max, especially coming off the Finals.  Also, Beal was suppose to be the next Ray Allen and a lot of people in the organization loved him. But today?  I would throw in Stadium Night Club, mumbo sauce, and some Nike Boots, anything to get Harden on this team.  That’s what makes this news hurt, if it is true.  Because opportunities like this don’t come around.  And opportunities like this cost.

Who knows who leaked this information.  It may be a disgruntled Ernie Grunfeld, who has loved Harden for a long time.  He may have had the trade with the ink drying, and just needed the owner to sign off.  And the owner would not pay for the opportunity.  So this hurts because this goes into what I have been saying for a long time now; what’s the plan?  How can you extend the Arenas shackles with the trade for bums like Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza, but not be willing to put out for one of the best shooting guards, if not one of the top 10 best scorers in the league?  And he is only 24! 

I know Leonsis has valued building through the draft.  He did it with the Caps; that team has yet to make it past the second round of the playoffs.  So he is trying it with the NBA.  Doesn’t work my brother.  This is a star driven league.  It is a league where you need at least one max guy; it used to be two until Dallas won in 2011.  But you have to spend money to win championships, unless you get lucky.  And with Grunfeld, you can’t get lucky because you don’t put yourself in a position to get lucky when you draft Jan Vesely with the 6th pick.  And don’t say you can’t get lucky with picks 6-15.  The Golden State Warriors are the eternal late lottery picks.  They are wrecking the league this year!  With Harrison Barnes (7th; Wizards picked Beal #3), Draymond Green (35; Wizards – Satornasky -32!), Klay Thompson (11th; Wizards Vesley 6), and Steph Curry (7th; Wizards traded the 5th pick for Mike Miller and Randy Foye), the Warriors stuck with an actual plan, got knuckleheads (Monta Ellis) off the team and got a coach to build them up.  That’s why they are having early success this season.  However with the Wizards news, we are reminded that the front office are throwing stuff at the wall hoping it would stick.  We’re shedding contracts one minute, we’re trying to lure big ticket stars.  We’re going for youth, we need solid vets.  But what is the true plan to win?  What are the Wizards, especially the owner, really want for this team?

That’s what makes this frustrating as a fan.  Did I expect Harden on this team? Not really.  Did I expect Beal to be better than he has been? Yes.  Am I worried about John Wall? Absolutely.  Do I believe that the front office can do what it takes to put a consistent winner on the floor? I don’t know.  Because great opportunities in the NBA cost; they cost an arm and a leg.  And the Wizards, so far in this new ownership group, have proven they are not willing to put forth the money (and time and energy) needed to acquire it.


Football Friday: AP = All Power

Posted: December 8, 2012 by dontbeskerritt in College Basketball, College Football, Must See TV, NFL

grant_g_adrian-peterson_mb_576What else is there to say about Adrian Peterson?  Call him Terminator.  Robocop.  6 Million Dollar Man.  It probably does not equate to what this guy is doing this season.  A little less than a year go, on Christmas Eve no less, on a terrible field in Landover, Maryland, just 20 minutes from my house, #28 was laying on the ground, with his career seemingly in his hand.  A torn left ACL along with MCL damage doomed his season, and threatened the next, and even his career.  However, he wouldn’t let doctors dictate the terms of his recovery.  He rehabbed relentlessly, some of which we watched on ESPN.  But nobody thought he would see the field until the 2013 season, or late into the 2012 season. 

Little did we know that AP lives by rules that are not same as the rest of mankind.

AP was back on the field for the first week of the 2012 season.  And he wasn’t a decoy, oh no he quickly became the workhorse.  Now through 12 games, he is closing in on a 2,000 yard season.  Let me say that again; less than a year after major damage to his left knee, AP is closing in on 2,000 yards, which is a historic season for running backs, especially in a league that downplays the running game.  AP needs 554 yards in 4 games to crack the mark; while he is only averaging a measly 120.5 yds/gm, he has averaged 157.8 yds over the last 6.  Did you see how he carved the Packers up last week?  And that was with 8 in the box to stop him!

This week the Bears take their shots at AP.  I doubt they can slow down the potential MVP and Comeback Player of the Year; hopefully they can keep him off the field with a sizable lead.  Whatever the case, it is truly a marvel to watch Adrian Peterson, one of the last true athletes in the mold of Jim Brown, Bo Jackson, and Hershel Walker.   Guys that would run over you and take names.  After watching you on that horrible field in Landover last year, I know not take you or anyone that will come after you for granted again.  All hail Adrian Peterson!  Song of the week (thanks @Esteban_Matriz) and games of the weekend after the bump.

Saturday, December 8

EARLY AFTERNOON – CBB Arkansas vs 3 Michigan (12pm, CBS)/LBSU vs 7 Ohio State (12pm, BTN)/Towson vs 15 Georgetown (12pm, MASN)

LATE AFTERNOON – Armyvs Navy (3pm, CBS)/CBB Temple vs 2 Duke (3:15pm, ESPN)/UCLA vs Texas (5:15pm, ESPN)

NIGHT – Heisman Trophy Presentation (8pm, ESPN)/CBB 8 Arizona vs Clemson (8pm, ESPN2)/13 Illinois vs 10 Gonzaga (10pm, ESPN2)

Sunday, December 9

EARLY AFTERNOON – Baltimore vs Washington/Chicago vs Minnesota/Dallas vs Cincinnati

LATE AFTERNOON – New Orleans vs New York Giants/Miami vs San Francisco/Arizona vs Seattle


Football Friday: December Sadness

Posted: November 30, 2012 by dontbeskerritt in College Football, NFL

sec_champ_game_2008_ed_noles_flickr_oAs we all know, college football is going to a playoff system in a couple of years.  If only the college presidents had thought of making a playoff system many years ago.  Maybe we wouldn’t have the Big East stealing from C-USA, the ACC then stealing from the Big East, and the Big 12 fighting off the Pac-12 like water buffaloes fighting against lions.  Why?  Because everyone would be swimming in the money like Scrooge McDuck.  But alas, these are academics, not athletic directors so they could not see the forest for the trees.  Now we are in the position we are in today.

This weekend, there is only one game that really matters to determine January bowls (well two, but I wouldn’t hold you to watching Cincinnati-UConn).  It’s a shame that the last weekend of the college regular season is rendered mostly meaningless.  If there was a 8-team playoff system, where Conference Champions get an automatic bid and there are 2 at-large bids to the highest BCS runners-up, what a system that would be!  Then teams like Florida and Oregon could still be glued to their TV.  Stanford and UCLA will still mean something.  And Johnny Football could still have an impact in January if voters and computers allow it.  So since the ManCave is all-powerful, let’s make our 8-team playoff now so we can sit and ponder what might have been.

1 Notre Dame vs 8 Georgia 2 Alabama vs 7 Oregon
3 Stanford vs 6 Florida
4 Nebraska vs 5 Kent State (highest-ranked BCS Conference winner)

Now obviously it’s not a perfect system, you can’t please anybody.  But wouldn’t you rather have a December Madness, with the 1st round in the higher-ranked team’s home field?  And the semifinals and Championship rotating among the BCS Bowls?  Instead, enjoy Navy-Army next week while we wait for the Bowl in who knows where USA.

Soon, this BCS mess will be over and done with.  Until then, we sit and suffer through conference championship games that mean nothing.  It didn’t have to be this way.  Scroll down for the song of the week and games of the weekend.

Saturday, December 1

EARLY AFTERNOON – C-USA Championship: Central Florida vs Tulsa (12pm, ESPN2)/11 Oklahoma vs TCU (12pn, ESPN)/23 Oklahoma State vs Baylor (12pm, FX)

LATE AFTERNOON – SEC Championship: 3 Georgia vs 2 Alabama (4pm, CBS)/Cincinnati vs UConn (3:30pm, ESPN2)/Kansas vs West Virginia (2:30pm, WDCA)

NIGHT – ACC Championship: 13 Florida State vs Georgia Tech (8pm, ESPN)/Big Ten Championship: Wisconsin vs 12 Nebraska (8pm, FOX)/18 Texas vs 6 Kansas State (8pm, ABC)

Sunday, December 2

EARLY AFTERNOON – Seattle vs Chicago/Minnesota vs Green Bay/Indianapolis vs Detroit

LATE AFTERNOON – Tampa Bay vs Denver/Pittsburgh vs Baltimore/Cincinnati vs San Diego

The Magic Has Run Out

Posted: November 28, 2012 by dontbeskerritt in Just Turrible, NBA
Tags: , ,

Yeah John, I Can’t Watch Either

I attended the Wizards double-OT torture session on Saturday night against the Bobcats.  My anything but lovable loser squad sunk to 0-11 that night, and now sit at 0-12.  That night, the Wizards wasted away multiple opportunities to win the game and to sink back into an irrelevancy that avoids being mocked by the Inside the NBA crew.  First, the having the final shot in regulation,  the Wizards ran a…actually I have no idea what the play was when Jordan Crawford missed badly from the top of the key.  Then in OT, Chris Singleton gets bailed out by the refs on a 3-pt shot down 2, only to miss one of the free throws to keep the game tied.  I don’t think I was shocked, after being tortured for so long, you get used to the pain.  Then, the entire double-OT session was a big clusterf***.  The Wizards, with a 2-pt lead, playing not to lose, shooting terrible shot after terrible shot, until Reggie Williams, who I have never heard of, ended the misery and hit a 3 to put the Bobcats up for good.  I won’t even describe the last-minute of double-OT.  I don’t want you to feel the pain I feel after every Wizards game.

Coach Randy Wittman, one of the few refreshing things about this garbage pail of a season, says he doesn’t have the answers.  I admire his honesty; even though he is pretty much saying that he is not a good coach.  He gets his team to play hard; they don’t run plays but they play hard.  He hasn’t had a consistent starting 5 or rotation but hey, the team makes valiant comebacks after being down 20+ on some nights.  I mean we could have had Jerry Sloan or Nate McMillian but I guess it’s easier to have a scapegoat on the bench instead of a real coach.  So there’s that.

No Randy, you don’t have the answers on the court.  That is because the organization doesn’t have the answers off the court.  Bradley Beal, our 3rd pick in the draft looks every bit of a 19-year-old rookie, from not being ready to catch and shoot which is why we drafted him (multiple times on Saturday he dropped the pass preventing an easy spot-up 3).  Jan Vesely, our 6th pick in 2011 has 30 fouls and 29 points so far this season.  There’s nothing that I have seen that justifies him being a draft pick.  He would make a great undrafted free agent.  I wouldn’t be surprised if he was out of the league in 5 years. I wish I was joking.  John Wall, our first pick in 2010, is hurt and who knows when he’s coming back.  Who made a decision on these guys?  Someone that doesn’t have all the answers either.

It’s the same guy who gave Gilbert Arenas a $100+ million dollar contract despite being injured with a bad knee.  It’s the same guy that hung onto assets for too long when the ship was sinking so he couldn’t get the most bang for his buck.  It’s the same guy who brought in Nick Young, Javale McGee and public enemy #1 Andray Blatche.  It’s the same guy who made the brilliant move to trade Arenas for Rashard Lewis, freeing up money for free agency sooner rather than later, only to trade that asset to get back the money shackle in the form of Emeka Okafor and Trevor Ariza until 2014.  It’s all explained here.   This was all in the name for veteran leadership this young team desperately needed to grow. Guess where Okafor and Ariza was in the critical moments against the Bobcats?  On the bench next to the coaches.  So much for that veteran leadership.  Oh yes, we could have had Elton Brand (coming off one of his best seasons), Omer Asik (one of the better rebounders right now) or Dorell Wright (shooter extraordinaire).

No, Randy you don’t have the answers.  But you are not alone.  The architect of this wandering in the wilderness doesn’t either.  And the owner, who allowed him to stay another season doesn’t.  Well, on his blog he has one answer.  Ted Leonsis said that his two point guards (A.J. Price and Shaun Livingston) had 0 assists.  In 58 minutes, our two point guards combined for 0 assists!  Nene had 3 by himself! But who gave our two point guards contracts?  Who is supposed to put them in the best position to get assists?  One of the guys, Randy Wittman, admits he doesn’t have the answer.  The other guy has proved for years that he is clueless himself.

Tonight, my Wizards play the Blazers, probably our last chance to avoid 0-18; the standard for ineptitude set by the Nets a couple of years ago.  We get to see Damian Lillard, one of the great rookies right now.  We get to see Nik Batum another free agent the Wizards could have snagged with the Ariza/Okafor money.  We get to see another team organized better and coached better than the Wizards.  On the court and off the court the magic has run out on everyone in this organization.  I hope that the man pulling the strings can find the right answers.

Football Friday: Giving No Thanks

Posted: November 22, 2012 by dontbeskerritt in College Football, NFL

Bad Coaching Blunders…No Thanks

1.  Just want to touch on Maryland’s move to the Big 10.  I first met the move with anger, shock, and sadness.  In high school I had to pass through College Park everyday to get to school, so I developed a rooting interest in the teams, especially basketball.  So Duke and North Carolina, hell even Wake Forest rivalries mean a lot.  But it took AyeAreGee to help me realize I sound like a senile old fool.  You know, those people who say, “I remember you had to call somebody and talk to them on the phone.” If I said that to any female, they would think I was retarded, “why don’t you just respond to my text message.”  That’s what anyone who wants the old conferences sounds like.  It’s a new day, and the money is too good to pass up to not consolidate these conferences.  I just sound dumb to complain.  Things are probably going to be much better this way.  But for all of this change, and for not getting my Pitt/Maryland rivalry that no one would care about, I have to say, no thanks.

2. Let’s stay in college football and a huge no thanks to Oregon and Kansas State.  What happened?  Kansas State got blitzed and with them losing so big, you wonder if they belonged in the top 3 conversation at all.  For Oregon; now I know Stanford’s defense is one of the best in the country.  But how does Oregon let a freshman quarterback beat them, and the game wasn’t as close as the 3 point victory would tell you.  What happened to that vaunted offense?  It’s been a couple of years that Oregon just can’t seem to get over that hump.  Chip Kelly, who had been riding an NFL wind, is now deflated as his team may not even win the Pac-12 North!  Most importantly, the BCS is now in chaos, with Notre Dame and Alabama looking to matchup, and two SEC teams looking to jump into the fray with Georgia and Florida.  Oh yeah, can I say no thanks to the BCS Playoffs starting next season, instead of this one?

3. A huge no thank you, and actually a big turkey should be for half of these NFL coaches.  What happened to all of the good coaches man?  These guys are literally costing teams games.  Ron Rivera of the Panthers refuses to go for it on 4th down, trusting his pathetic defense over his QB that is built to convert 4th downs.  Pat Shurmur is calling 4th down fade routes to receivers I’ve never heard of instead of giving the ball to Trent Richardson, almost costing his Browns against the Cowboys.  I see bad clock management all of the time.  But the biggest turkey has Jim Schwartz, the overrated shmuck coach for the Lions.  On Thanksgiving of all platforms, the world got to see the fraud this guy is.  With his team up 24-14, the Texans got a bogus rushing TD.  The running back was clearly down, but the refs missed it.  Schwartz, thinking he’s the smartest guy on the field, immediately and smugly challenges the play.  Remember, scoring plays are automatically reviewed.  Because he threw the flag, according to the rules (which he should know) the right to challenge is taken away and they play on.  Sounds stupid, sounds terrible, but it’s the rules and Schwartz should have known that.  As he said, he cost his team a TD, and momentum as the Texans went on to tie and eventually win the game.

Bonus: Actually, let me show some thanks to the Rams, that thought 3 first rounders and a 2nd rounder would be greater or equal than RG158.3.  I know the NFC East is saying a big no thank you; through 3 NFC East games, he has 10 TD, 2 INT, and a 138.4 passer rating.  Unbelievable.  Song of the weekend will be a throw back since we are chilling for 4 days and games of the weekend coming up.  Hope you enjoy the rest of your Thanksgiving weekend.

Saturday, November 24

EARLY AFTERNOON: 19 Michigan vs Ohio State (12pm, ABC)/Georgia Tech vs 3 Georgia (12pm, ESPN)/18 Rutgers vs Pitt (12pm, ESPN2)

LATE AFTERNOON: 4 Florida vs 10 Florida State (3:30pm, ABC)/5 Oregon vs 15 Oregon State (3pm, Pac-12 Network)/13 Oklahoma vs 21 Oklahoma State (3:30pm, ESPN)

NIGHT: 1 Notre Dame vs USC (8pm, ABC)/8 Stanford vs 17 UCLA (6:30pm, FOX)/12 South Carolina vs 11 Clemson (7pm, ESPN)

Sunday, November 25

EARLY AFTERNOON: Atlanta vs Tampa Bay/Buffalo vs Indianapolis/Minnesota vs Chicago

LATE AFTERNOON: San Francisco vs New Orleans/Baltimore vs San Diego/St. Louis vs Arizona

Football Friday: Rivals Collide

Posted: November 17, 2012 by dontbeskerritt in NFL

Just some quick thoughts on this weekend’s big game between the Ravens and Steelers.  No matter who is starting at QB for the Steelers, this is still a game to watch.  I remember it was two years ago when the Steelers threw Dennis Dixon to the wolves in Ravens Stadium and the Steelers almost won the game.  Granted, the Black & Yellow defense was much more fierce than the one that will appear at Heinz Field on Sunday night.  But hey, the Ravens defense is a shell of its former self.  Injuries, combined with poor play, especially from their secondary, make this still one of the great rivalries right now.

It’s good that we still have this rivalry to fall back on because a whole lot of other ones are duds.  I remember when Dolphins-Bills use to mean something with Dan Marino and Jim Kelly slinging it in the arctic wind.  The Redskins-Eagles rivalry featured the Body Bag game, with the Redskins coming back to Philly in the playoffs and putting a toe tag on Buddy Ryan’s Iggles.  Now, these two squads are playing to delay their inevitable executions.  Colts-Patriots amazingly is still must see TV, with the QB formerly known as Peyton Manning being played by Andrew Luck.  So even though this is still a big game, the juice is gone because it’s not the same players.  But if Luck does win, and we can have a rematch in the playoffs, watch out.

Football is built for the rival game.  The game where it doesn’t matter who’s on the other side, anything goes because the passion the boils between the two teams.  The oblong shaped ball could bounce either way so it comes to heart and desire which should be matched by both teams.  Free agency has sort of dented rivalries, and players have been forced by the commish to be a little more PC to their opponents.  But it is great to see that two teams, in the Ravens and Steelers, can still bring up old-fashioned hatred of one another, if only for two days (if not more) out of the year.  And really, that’s all the fans need.  Song and games of the weekend after the bump.

Saturday, November 17

EARLY AFTERNOON: Iowa vs 21 Michigan (12pm, ESPN)/10 Florida State vs Maryland (12pm, ESPNU)/22 Rutgers vs Cincinnati            (12pm, MASN)

LATE AFTERNOON: 18 USC vs 17 UCLA (3pm FOX)/Ohio State vs Wisconsin (3:30pm, ABC,ESPN2)/23 Texas Tech vs 24 Oklahoma State (3:30pm, My20)

NIGHT: 13 Stanford vs 2 Oregon (8pm, ABC)/1 Kansas State vs Baylor (8pm, ESPN)/12 Oklahoma vs West Virginia (7pm, FOX)

Sunday, November 18

EARLY AFTERNOON: Green Bay vs Detroit/Cleveland vs Dallas/Arizona vs Atlanta

LATE AFTERNOON: Indianapolis vs New England/New Orleans vs Oakland/San Diego vs Denver

06 Things We’re Looking for This NBA Season

Posted: November 14, 2012 by dontbeskerritt in NBA
Tags: , ,

For the first time ever, this mancaver is getting NBA League Pass as soon as the free trial ends as soon as the NFL season winds down as soon as he gets his money right.  This is a breakthrough for me because I always thought a one minute highlight on Sportscenter was enough to get a good jist on the goings on in the league.  Well since ESPN went Tebow on me, I can’t count on them for quality NBA breakdowns.  Besides, the league product has never been better!  Every night, from coast to coast will be a blockbuster night, even a random Golden State vs Houston game.  Besides, it’s better than being in misery just watching my Bullets play.  With this new anticipation for the season, here are the top 6 things I am looking forward to this NBA season.

Ok, I wrote all of that a couple of days before the NBA season.  Because of other duties, problems, general laziness, etc., I have been unable to complete this post until today.  So I will do a two-week update of all the notes I had written down before the season started.

1. “As his hairline has retreated, his game has completed.” – That’s what Walt Frazier said about LeBron James.  Anyone else excited/anxious/nervous about LeBron’s ceiling now that he has blown away the money off of his back with his phenomenal 2012? As a general basketball fan, whose team is out of it before the season begins, I’m in the first group; I know a lot of Celtics and Lakers fans who middle in the 2nd and 3rd group.  Any which way you stand, we will all be witnesses.
Update: A ho-hum start in South Beach. The Heat are 6-2, Lebron is averaging 23.7 PPG (5th), 10.0 RPG (10th), and 6.1 APG (22nd).  Ray Allen has hit a game-winner and Rajon Rondo has tried to take out Dwyane Wade.  It’s like last season never ended.

2. Does It Really Never Rain In Southern California? – I honestly don’t understand how the Lakers, with all of their cap problems at the end of last season, could enter this season with Dwight Howard and Steve Nash, alongside Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol.  Oh yeah they only gave up Andrew Bynum and picks.  So I guess, we’ll see a Heat-Lakers finals?  That will be fun, but I kind of want a surprise at the end.  And the Clippers can give us one.  Chris Paul is back and healthy alongside Chauncy Billups.  Blake Griffin was banged up this offseason but should be fine now.  Getting veterans Grant Hill and Lamar Odom, and even the jacker Jamal Crawford makes them intriguing.                                                                                                                                                       Update: Lakers start 1-4 and the world explodes.  Charles Barkley uses the Lakers to deliver the quote of the year “I’ve always said I want my accountants from Princeton, not my offense.” Mike D’Antoni will try to pretend to coach defense.  Clippers lead the Pacific.  Did I mention the world exploded when the Lakers started 1-4?

The Beard God has a new Temple

3. How the West Will Be Fun – This year’s Western Conference is the very reason to get League Pass.  There are a lot of intriguing teams out there.  The reigning conference champs, the Thunder, are an afterthought, even when they dealt James Harden to the Rockets.  The Nuggets are still dangerous with better perimeter defense and athleticism.  Dallas has made some subtle moves, and Memphis is still a solid squad with guys who they hope will have improved their game.  Utah and Golden State are interesting.  If Minnesota can get back Ricky Rubio and Kevin Love; they can really become the NBA’s Great White Hype.  And of course I forgot the Spurs, who is just bore everyone to 50+ wins and home court in the first round, again.                                                              Update: Utah and Golden State are awesome squads that will fall apart by January.  Minnesota is 5-2.  Kevin Martin is actually pretty good with the Thunder.  San Antonio has only one loss, but who really cares. And we may have to add Houston to this list, despite the small sample size.  Jeremy Lin is so lucky.

4. “We’re doing it every way you can do it. If we were a sex manual, it’d be a best-seller.” – This was actually Jim Carrey Rick Carlisle talking about the Dallas Mavericks.  But I’m going to use it for my Wizards.  Last year, they lost in every way possible.  Giving up, blowing leads, running back on defense when they team was on offense, the basics.  But my beef is with the front office, because it seems that the team is building in every which way you can, the last 7 years.  After great successes through 2004-08, the franchise never took the opportunity to get better, thinking that a Arenas/Butler/Jamison nucleus could really win a title.  They thought Brendan Haywood and Etan Thomas could really help them in May and June.  After that plan fizzled with Arenas’s knee, the team went young with projects alongside veterans.  That didn’t work.  Then the team went super young, with a coach that was here to coach veterans.  Andray Blatche got fat.  Now the franchise is back with bringing in more professional NBA players, alongside promising young players.  I really wish that my team would stick with one plan and roll with it until the end. While I cannot stand Ernie Grunfeld, this is a team that could contend for an 8th spot if John Wall turns from solid NBA player to a superstar, and Bradley Beal can bring his shooting touch.  I will be watching.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Update: The Wizards are 0-6.  Wall and NeNe are still hurt.  I haven’t watched a full game from start to finish yet. Javale McGee shrugs.

5. ESPN on the Screen – I’m not just a sports geek.  I’m a sports media geek.  I don’t usually say that because being a sports geek is one thing; being a sports media geek means you probably have a lot of lonely Saturday nights watching west coast NBA basketball.  Anyway, I’m excited for what they are going to do at ESPN for their pregame shows.  Jon Barry and Chris Broussard are gone.  They could have stopped right there.  Now they are bringing in Bill Simmons and Stan Van Gundy.  Now I’m excited.  Then they dumped Van Gundy and brought in Jalen Rose.  Fist pump!  ESPN won’t be TNT, but theit studio show won’t be a torture chamber listening to Magic Johnson speak.                                                                                                                                                                            Update: The first gem from Jalen actually came while he was on Sportscenter.  Keep it real, brother.  Oh yeah, here are some great NBA follows on twitter this season; @WojYahooNBA, @JaValeMcGee34, @JonesOnTheNBA, @ZachLowe_NBA, @mcuban

6. Last Men Standing – For the Eastern and Westen Conference Finals I got Miami and Boston again, and the Lakers and Thunder.  For my finals matchup.  I got….damn it don’t matter, I got Mr. James hoisting the trophy again.                                                                                                                       Update: If the Mayans don’t end the world, the Lakers being under .500 at Christmas and giving up close to 100 points per game will.  So you have nothing to worry about LeBron haters.