Friday, May 14, 2010

The LeBron Derby...A One Team Race?

This morning I awoke to the following text from ESPN Alerts (which, btw, is the greatest service ever):

"ESPN CHI CLE - Chad Ford: Three NBA GMs think Bulls will land Lebron James; more at"

So is LeBron on the verge of becoming a Bull? Assuming those three GMs aren’t complete idiots (which is entirely possible with the state of some NBA teams)…then I say YES, yes he is.

According to Chad Ford’s story, one of the GMs offered up a scenario that would send Luol Deng to the Cavs in a sign and trade in order to land Wade or Bosh as LeBron’s running mate. I don’t know if the Cavs go for that – but assuming it’s a sign and trade than, correct me if I’m wrong, I believe the Bulls would be able to add on that extra $3oM and 1 year that only the Cavs currently can.

Chad also mentioned that two of the GMs believe that Calipari will be the Bulls next head coach. Cal mentioned last week he had no interest in the Bulls coaching vacancy, however, I don’t think you can turn down an opportunity to coach this line-up:

PG: Derrick Rose

SG: LeBron James

SF: James Johnson? (With no Deng this will be an interesting position…the Bulls could try and draft somebody like Gordon Heyward or Damion Jones to develop and then use the mid-level exception to sign a veteran SF)

PF: Chris Bosh

C: Joakim Noah

All the points above are moot if LeBron chooses to stay in Cleveland…but we ARE talking about Cleveland –

Do you think LeBron would rather be a part of this:

Or this…:

My early prediction? LeBron to the Bulls. The Knicks will sign Joe Johnson to a max deal and regret it for the next decade.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

30 for 30: Straight Outta LA

Did anyone out there watch ESPN’s 30 for 30: Straight Outta LA? I did, and I thought it was terrible. I know instantly what Fodor is thinking, “Rich White Boy be hating and keeping the Man down.” First off Fodor, your white and from the rough streets of Evanston Illinois, where Northwestern is located so calm down. 2nd, I didn’t think it was a bad documentary and as a white kid from the ‘burbs we all know I rocked Dre, Cube, Snoop and Easy E in my car all the time. The reason I didn’t like it, was because it was a documentary that should have been on MTV, not ESPN.

As many of you may or may not know, I was born in LA and my family spent about 5 years out there during the time the Raiders were in LA. In that time, my Dad watched a lot of Raiders game, and they kind of became his second team. I don’t remember any of this, but have talked to him numerous times growing up about LA and the sports scene. Because of this and other reasons, the Raiders have been one of my favorite non-Bears sports teams. So I was excited, to see what was going to be said about the Raiders. Why they moved to LA, what it was like while they were there, what drove Al Davis so crazy that he packed up and left back to Oakland, only to play in the same stadium he left.

What I ended up watching was an hour long documentary the spent 80% of the time talking about Gangsta rap and how NWA used Raiders gear to brand themselves. Great, interesting story, I know Ice Cube would be talking some about himself, but seriously, the this is a sports documentary.

Where was the sports? The teams the Raiders had in Oakland before the move and while playing in LA had some iconic players and coaches. Marcus Allen, Jim Plunkett, Howie Long, John Madden and of course Al Davis. All of these players were regulated to second class citizens in this film.

Ice Cube wanted to tell his story that involved the Oakland Raiders. He accomplished that, but the sports story was about the Oakland Raiders, not about Ice Cube. I’m glad he made the film, but next time, don’t show it on ESPN.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Bloomington: Nocturnal Adventures

I did something cool tonight, everybody. And no, that's not me.

Let me start at the beginning. About three weeks ago, I bought (with some timely assistance from a microfinancier in Evanston, IL), a brand spankin' new mountain bike. For those of you that are interested in that sort of thing, it's a Specialized Hardrock, a fairly starter-ish bike, but nonetheless very high quality. So far I have nothing but good things to say about it. Here it is, in all its bikey glory:

Anyway, I've been taking it out for random late-night spins whenever I get the jones to after work. I usually get off around 1 in the summertime (that's one AM for all you desk jockeys), by which time Bloomington, especially up around where I live, is basically quiet and deserted. All the kids have gone home to Indy and Chicago.

So I have the entire Indiana athletic complex to myself at night. In the past, this has led to wanderings around the football stadium, racing circles around Assembly Hall, and I definitely got a cool view of the new Cook Hall tonight from the outside.

IU Basketball's new facility is really pretty - I can't wait to see how they do it up for game days, but it already looks like a great addition to go with the North End Zone. Believe me, it looks much better up close at night with the lights on than it does in a simulation video. If I ever get a digital camera, I'll get some pics.

Rick Greenspan is really putting together something special. But I digress.

Tonight I did something a little different. I headed up to the Little 500 track, which, this being Bloomington, was sitting wide open and unlocked. Without any No Trespassing signs (in case anybody was worried.)

So I rode straight onto the cinderblock track and did five laps. In the pitch darkness. On a mountain bike.

It was awesome.
I have watched almost every Little 500 since being at Indiana, and always wondered what it would feel like to race that track. I think, looking at that picture, Barack probably felt the same way. Granted, doing it in the dark, without a crowd, not on the proper bike, and without 31 other riders trying to kill me makes for a somewhat different experience.

But I think I got the basic idea. And man was it cool.

Anyway, just thought I'd share. Bloomington at night is a pretty sweet place.

On to some side notes.

The IU Men's basketball team, per, got a 3.14 in spring semester. All you die hards looking to go back to the glory days, let's give credit where credit is due. Tom Crean and the boys are doing it "the right way."

Me, I'll take a 2.5 and an NCAA Tourney appearance... but whatever. Way to go, guys.

Also, Joe Posnanski at is very quickly becoming one of my go-to guys for online sportswriting. Natural voice, good analysis, just an ideal blend of everything you want in good writing as a whole, not just for sports. Here are a couple of his recent articles.

Royals aren't winning, but is that really Trey Hillman's fault?

Griffey's skills are long gone -- but it was fun while it lasted

And his NFL Draft article, which I thought was dead on: It gets more hype than ever, but NFL draft is still crapshoot

One more. I'd just like to remind you all that when you get sick of Peter King, there is a solution. Kissing Suzy Kolber does a detailed rebuttal of each and every column by The Big Latte. Here's the most recent.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Big 10 Coaches

I saw this picture on facebook and it was too good not to share. Here is the south park drawings of the coaches of the big 10 as it stands.

Big Ten Coaches Meet South Park

It was too big to post on here but still worth looking at.