Delanté

Those that know me well know I am a huge Joe Budden fan. No two ways around it; I love the dude's work and enjoy his introspective and thought provoking rhymes. Needless to say, I try to follow up on everything he puts out there and bob my head to it and also understand where he was coming from when he jotted down his verses. Joe's new thing is that he has formed an alliance with rappers Joell Ortiz, Royce da 5'9 and Crooked I named Slaughterhouse. You can catch the group's second song "Onslaught" below. Not an actual video, just the song itself.
Here's a line from the song by Crooked I:
"No it's not H to the Izzo,
But I push buttons like
Jay shoulda did Joe"

For those wondering why I chose to Delanté as a title, it refers to my homeboy that shares the same type of love for Jump Off Joey.......if that doesn't catch his attention I don't know what will.

Onslaught

Next Game

The Silverback Gorillas will try to improve to 7-0 on Sunday November 30th when they host Parasco at Centre Sportif Jean Eudes. The game is at 2:30pm. Come watch and give us a shoutout; should be good game.
SBG TV needs you!!!

NFL Picks Week 13

San Francisco (3-8) @ Buffalo (6-5)
I could see Mike Singletary just stepping onto the field before the game and just scaring the Bills players just by his sheer size, voice and words. His handshake and talk with Dick Jauron should freak out Buffalo players to the point that the team chickens out in the fourth quarter. Trust me on this one. I’m expecting the Niners to come and hit the Bills in the mouth and be physical with them thus wearing them out as the game progresses. Believe it.
San Francisco wins 23-20

Baltimore (7-4) @ Cincinnati (1-9-1)
Good luck to the Bengals. At this point, I can only hope they manage not to get thrashed early. Maybe try to keep the game close for three quarters and then eventually lose by double digits. That defense will keep receivers out of the middle and quarterbacks (the starting one might get knocked out) on their backs more then washed up porn star. Tip of the week: Do not throw the ball anywhere remotely close to Ed Reed. Hell, even when playing Madden, I avoid Reed at all costs. Quick note: I was talking to Supreme yesterday and he was saying how black people love fruity drinks (by fruity I mean fruity as in fruits, not, you know, the other thing) which led to a discussion about Sizzurp (for the uninformed: Sizzurp is acombination of prescription codeine and promethazine hydrochloride cough syrup soda and candy). He then mentioned that Sizzurp is pretty much a rip off of the Flaming Moe. In case you can’t recall, the Flaming Moe is an alcoholic beverage that Homer and Moe “discovered” by mixing cough syrup and alcohol together and lighting it on fire. And he’s actually right! Now back to NFL, every hard nosed defense we have seen in the league has essentially been a Flaming Moe. The Baltimore Ravens however have taken that idea and created a defensive culture that just keeps on producing and entertaining. The Ravens are Sizzurp.
Baltimore wins 24-13

Indianapolis (7-4) @ Cleveland (4-7)
Deion Sanders said something interesting on Gameday last week. He mentioned that losing teams at this time of the year are dangerous because they have “nothing to play for”. So they can afford to go for it on 4th and 2 from their own 35 yard line. So essentially, bad teams become reckless and unpredictable and are therefore tougher to to pick to lose games. But in this case, I am fairly confident that Cleveland will lose. Know why? Last time I checked, the incomparable Romeo Crennel was still the coach of the Cleveland Browns.
Indianapolis wins 23-17


Carolina (8-3) @ Green Bay (5-6)
Back in 2001 the Philadelphia 76ers made the NBA Finals by riding the back of league MVP Allen Iverson and the brilliant coaching skills of Larry Brown. One of the biggest contributors on the team was Eric Snow. He initiated the offense thus allowing Iverson to play off the ball and also defended the opposing shooting guard which freed up Iverson (small in stature by NBA standards to play the shooting guard position) to defend point guards. If Eric Snow does not accept that role, it’s quite possible that Philly might not have made the Finals that year considering the fact they essentially had no one else to do what he did for them. That being said, despite the fact he was a leader for the team and that he was one of their best defenders, he was also their worst offensive player. Defenses often completely ignored him to double team Iverson because Snow could not make a jump shot from the top of the key to save his life. The Sixers were still a good team that marched to the Finals despite having Snow as their offensive weak link. Fast forward to today, Jake Delhomme has become that weak link in these past few weeks; which is scary because he is the team’s starting quarterback. But the team has still managed to win some games and remain near the top of the standings. However, when you play against good teams, your flaws tend to stick out like a massive erection (check out Ron Burgundy video below) and can get you beat (yes I said play, good, stick, massive erection and beat all in the same phrase and you guys barely even flinched). This Sunday, Green Bay takes advantage.
Green bay wins 23-20
Massive erection


Miami (6-5) @ St. Louis (2-9)
A playoff hopeful against a bunch of players just hopeful to get out of town. This should be a cakewalk right? Not necessarily, some coaches know how to push exactly the right buttons to get their teams ready to play regardless of the circumstances. Unfortunately for Rams fans, Jim Haslett is not one of those coaches.
Miami wins 20-13

New Orleans (6-5) @ Tampa Bay (8-3)
The rule of thumb in picking games in the NFC South is to go with the home team. Sounds easy enough right? Last time I checked (honestly it’s been a while but I still think that the stat holds up), NFC South teams had lost a combined one game at home this season going to head.
Tampa Bay wins 27-23

NY Giants (10-1) @ Washington (7-4)
A rematch of the NFL season opener. In that game, the Redskins looked lost and confused on the football field but have since improved drastically and are playing like an NFC East team. But can the Skins take down the juggernaut known as the Giants? Matter of fact, the New York Giants are the Marvel Comics villain Juggernaut. He is this huge dude dressed in a shiny red (possibly burgundy) suit with a helmet and just bullies and beats people around when he feels like it. His sworn enemies are the group of high powered mutants the X-Men. Make no mistake about it though, the Redskins are not on the level of the X-Men and therefore are not on the level of Juggernaut.

Juggernaut Bitchhhhh



Atlanta (7-4) @ San Diego (4-7)
Michael Turner goes back to the house that LT built while he was backing him up; except Turner comes back as the league’s third leading rusher while Tomlinson is thirteenth in rushing yards in the NFL. I mean, isn’t it remotely possible that management is second guessing that decision? Don’t get me wrong, the decision was clearly an easy one, let some other team overpay for Turner when he really is not worth it; but guess what, turns out he is worth it. Who could have known? On another note, this is what Michael Turner and the rest of the Atlanta Falcons will be saying before the game on Sunday afternoon







Atlanta wins 24-20

Pittsburgh (8-3) @ New England (7-4)
Everyone keeps saying that the Steelers are one of the best teams in the AFC and I understand the argument, however Pittsburgh in my mind really is not a top team in the NFL. Some might argue that given their record, they should be considered among the very best in the league but I don’t see it. Big Ben right now looks like a UFC fighter that was in a 3 round brawl with Brock Lesnar. That’s what he looks like before, during and after games because his offensive line has not been able to protect him (that coupled with fact that Roethlisberger holds on to the ball). In addition, their running game has been shaky the past few weeks. The one thing that they do and do really well is play defense. Between their run stopping ability and their blitz packages, that’s the only thing that they do that impresses me. So when Pittsburgh comes out to play their first playoff game at home after a bye, don’t be so sure to expect them to defeat the wildcard team. This Sunday, it just so happens that they play against a team vying for a wildcard spot or possibly more. See where this is going?
New England wins 20-17

Denver (6-5) @ NY Jets (8-3)
With a chance to take a two game lead in the AFC west, Denver crapped in the bed, hot tub and living room all at the same time by losing to Oakland at home. The crazy thing was that I actually considered the thought that Denver might pull off the upset against the Jets until I recalled that the Broncos wouldn’t be able to stop our Silverback Gorillas in a game of flag football with their weak defense.
NY Jets win 27-20

Kansas City (1-10) @ Oakland (3-8)
A few nights ago I was talking to Philly and he mentioned that he stumbled across a Kansas City Chiefs forum in which several (and by several I am talking Wilt Chamberlain several if you get my drift) women posted that they would love to get a piece of good old Herm Edwards. He is apparently this huge sex symbol and yet he is a crummy coach. The guy is known amongst the masses because he is an NFL coach but he is a mediocre one at best. But hey, do what you do Herm, it might not translate to success in the NFL, but it will translate somewhere else. In the words of Rihanna: “You need to live your life ay ayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy, ain’t got no time for the haters!”
Oakland wins 26-20




Chicago (6-5) @ Minnesota (6-5)
The Minnesota Vikings are starting to make me a believer despite their average quarterback play. They have shown for me to believe they could win the division and possibly be a good team come next year when McNabb dumps Philly for Minnesota. Yea I said it.
Minnesota wins 23-20

Jacksonville (4-7) @ Houston (4-7)
The 4-7 Bowl! Saying that Jacksonville head coach Jack Del Rio is not on the hot seat right now is as big of a lie as Madonna singing Like a Virgin way back when. Right now he is coaching with his job on the line right now. You better believe he will be putting his best guys out there and chewing them out when they mess up. The advantage I see the Jaguars having going into this game is Fred Taylor and Maurice Jones-Drew. They show up on Sunday, so do the Jags.
Jacksonville wins 24-23

Thanksgiving Day Recap

Tennessee (11-1) @ Detroit (0-12)
Pick: Tennessee wins 27-24
Reality: Tennessee won 47-10
I predicted that Detroit would give Tennessee a scare.....sheeesh, boy was I wrong! It's as if the game involved an NFL team playing an exibition game against a college team. I'm not sure what else to add; that statement was pretty self-explanatory.

Seattle (2-10) @ Dallas (8-4)
Pick: Dallas wins 27-13
Reality: Dallas won 34-9
A few years from now, T.O. will be doing an interview about how things went wrong in Dallas and the things that contributed to the deterioration of team chemistry. T.O. makes his interview with his customary stunna shades, a Nike hat turned backwards and speaks candidly as usual:

Deion Sanders: What went wrong in Dallas Terrel?

Terrel Owens: Things just got blown out of proportion man. Tony Romo couldn't handle the fact that I was bigger then him in Dallas.

Deion Sanders: Actually Terrel, Tony Romo was and is still bigger then you in Dallas. The quarterback of America's Team is America's quarterback, no simpler way then that to put it.

Terrel Owens: See, now there you go again; the media is always blowing things out of proportion and never get the story straight.

Deion Sanders: Well I mean T.O. I gotta keep it real with you here. You have played for three teams and three times things have soured and ended horribly. The one common denominator here is YOU. So the fallout between you and Romo, think back; isn't it at all possible that you're responsible?

Terrel Owens: Don't say stuff like that man. Tony wasn't even into being star. See now you got me talking bad about him, don't do that to me Prime; that's my quarterback(snif snif).

Deion Sanders: These are emotional times man. But on the real, I can't believe I defended yo b*tch ass all these years.

Terrel Owens: This is all Jeff Garcia's fault. He didn't like women. McNabb couldn't stand the fact that I was bigger then him in Philadelphia and Romo just wasn't that good.

Deion Sanders: I just realized, you ain't got no damn mirrors in your house. Cut the interview, it's over.

Real interview



Arizona (7-5) @ Philadelphia (6-5-1)
Pick: Arizona wins 26-23
Reality: Philadelphia won 48-20
“Donovan must go! Donovan must go! We don’t need him, he sucks!” McNabb then lights up the Arizona Cardinals defense (27-39, 260 yards, 4 TDs) and Philly fans are practically calling to have him inducted into the Hall of Fame. This reminds me of last week’s episode of Entourage. Vince had hit a rough patch and could not find an acting job to save his life. His manager Eric (also childhood friend) was doing everything in his power to get Vince noticed. He met a big film director and showed him scenes of a movie that got shelved. He decided to pass but still liked what he saw. Vince felt humiliated and felt that Eric made him seem desperate and decided to fire him because things were not working out. The next day, Vince receives a call from Martin Scorcesse. Scorcesse had been forwarded the unreleased scenes from the previous big movie guy and wanted to offer the lead role to Vince. Vince obviously accepts and then seeks out Eric to ask for forgiveness. Eric forgave him, but will McNabb forgive the Philly organization and its fans?

In case you have never watched Entourage, you should get in on the action. Watch the scene below. Super Hollywood agent Ari Gold storms into the building (accompanied by his assistant Lloyd) where he used to work at to confront an agent that found pictures of his wife from years ago a little uncovered and threatens to put them on the internet to win their "prankfest"(they were basically challenging each other to see who would humiliate the other the best). Enjoy. Thank me later.

Interview

Deion Sanders sits down with Terrel Owens........SBG Style
(filmed on November 26)

Thanksgiving Games

Tennessee (10-1) @ Detroit (0-11)
One loss does not make a season, but I was questionning Tennessee's so called dominance from the start. Are they as good as advertised? I think they are a wonderful football team that relies on a tried and tested efficient formula: running the ball and playing great defense. In addition to that, Kerry Collins has played very well for them (there is no way the Titans would be 10-1 if Vince Young were the starting QB) so far. So why was it that I had dbouts about them (and still do)? Collins has not yet faced a rough stretch this season and neither have the Tennessee Titans. I want to see how they respond to adversity and then we will know if they are for real.

By the way, I was listening to the B.S. Report (Bill Simmons podcast) this morning, and he mentionned that Detroit's only shot at winning a game this season might be Week 14 against Minnesota at home. If you are a Lions fan, that is a scary thought. No one wishes to be part of history this way, well except for Matt Millen. Despite being fired earlier this season, his fingerprints are all over this mess. I think they will somehow avoid the historic 0-16 but I am not sure who they will beat. Expect them to give Tennessee a scare on Turkey Day though.
Tennessee wins 27-24



Seattle (2-9) @ Dallas (7-4)

This week, NFL Network’s Gameday crew (Rich Eisen, Steve Mariucci and Deion Sanders) sit down with Tony Romo, Marion Barber, Roy Williams and Patrick Crayton. After having watched Terrel Owens’ interview with Deion Sanders and seeing how involved he was in the offense, they all made a request to have a sit down with Primetime:

Primetime: How about them Cowboys?

Romo: I want the ball more Prime. I want to make plays.


Barber: Quit trippin’ man, you touch the ball on every snap man! I want more touches.


Roy Williams: C’mon Barb, you get at least 30 touches per game. Real to real, I don’t wanna start nothin’ but we and by we I mean you Tony, we keep throwing the ball to the wrong receiver; that’s all I’m gonna say, Y’all can read between the lines.


Crayton: I hear that mang, I should be getting’ the ball between 6 to 9 times per games mang, that’s crazy!


Primetime: Aren’t you guys exaggerating just a little?


Romo: When T. O. did it, it worked; I mean the move was brilliant. I mean I can't throw it and catch it myself.


Primetime: HA HA HA (slightly embarassed laugh); Moochie, what you think of what they sayin?


Mariucci: We talk too much about the Cowboys, let's talk about Brett Favre (Mooch gets teary eyed), he's the best quarterback ever.

Eisen: Well I mean this thursday's game also involves the Seahawks. So let's talk about them for a while. Dallas will beat them 27-13. See you guys next week.


Arizona (7-4) @ Philadelphia (5-5-1)
I can’t wait to see Asante Samuel matched up with either Larry Fitgerald or Anquan Boldin. He has a knack for intercepting passes and returning them for touchdowns. However, he also the habit (sometimes bad, sometimes good) of looking at the quarterback when the ball gets snapped. Consequently, he ca
n beat deep on play action passes. Keep an eye on that in the game. As it pertains to Donovan McNabb, he needs to play well in this game if he is going to fly under the radar for now. If he plays poorly, the boos will come out and will probably be worse then the ones heard at Madison Square Garden last year with Isiah Thomas and Stephon Marbury. I was discussing this with Philly earlier this evening, the McNabb benching reminded me of the movie Any Given Sunday. The timing seemed odd and the way it was handled was worse then the Biggie murder investigation. Andy Reid sent someone to announce to McNabb he was being benched instead of announcing it to him himself. It’s as if a message had been relayed to Andy Reid by management or ownership to make a change at that point. I understand the Eagles frustration though, they have been spoiled by Superbowl wins and now feel that competing for a playoff spot with the guy that has been the face of the franchise this decade is beneath them. It all makes perfect sense. Just remember, once McNabb finally decides that he’s had enough and leaves; he will not be coming back. As a prime example, look at the Packers and the Jets. Although the situations are not exactly a perfect match, they are somewhat similar. Isn’t it at least plausible that some guys on the Packers felt that they might have defeated the Saints with Favre at the helm instead of Rodgers (especially after Favre helped the Jets defeat the Titans the day before)? Just keep that in the back of your minds Philly fans. That being said, I think Warner leads the Cardinals to a win.
Arizona wins 26-23

Gotham's King

Check out the boxscore from last night's game between Cleveland and New York:
Wally Szczerbiak: 19 minutes, 15 points, 6-9 fgs, 3-6 3pt fgs.
Delonte West: 33 minutes, 16 points, 7-14 fgs, 1-7 3pt fgs (all wide open), one vicious two handed fast break dunk
J.J. Hickson: 18 minutes, 10 points, 5-6 fgs, 2 rebs, 1 blk
Anderson Varejao: 21 minutes, 11 points, 6 rebs, 1 blk
Daniel Gibson: 28 minutes, 10 points, 4-11 fgs, 2-8 3pt fgs, 4 rebs, 7 assists.
As much New Yorkers and the media wanted to make this game about LeBron James; it simply wasn't. You have to wonder if Mike D'Antoni instructed his guys to play minimal defense just to incite LeBron to go for fiddy and send the fans hoem happy(LeBron had 26 points after 3 quarters and did not play the rest of the way). I mean, Wilson Chandler started the game guarding Zydrunas Ilgauskas. Think about that one for a sec. The Cavs obviously started out the game pounding the ball inside for easy scores. Consequently, they were able to get a multitude of open looks throughout the game which resulted in the boxscore you saw at the top. It's one thing to decide to let the role players score and shut down the star OR to let the star score but shutdown the role players; but let every one score? There is a recipe for disaster if I've ever heard one. The Cleveland Cavaliers were up by 29 points at halftime at the Garden. Tough break for fans that packed the building last night. Cleveland improved to 11-3 while New York fell to 7-7. Cleveland will play against the Oklahoma City Thunder (1-14) while the Knickerbockers will face off at the Detroit Pistons (8-5) tonight. I'm expecting AI to have a great shooting night in that one. Perhaps the Cavs might be next in my Path to Greatness column....

One last note: I know some of you might have followed the times that I've posted info about the fantasy league in which I participate with some of my boys. I usually just post on the blog the disses that we send each other throughout the week regarding our respective teams and what not. But last week, our league Commish took it too far. He was able to coax some dude into trading Dirk Nowitzki to him for Elton freakin Brand. Normally, a commission would veto such a deal but hey he made it happen and more power to him. But I am officially putting dudes on notice; the second that more shady trades start popping up by the second and that I see Chris Paul traded for the likes of Rafer Alston; I'm forming a coalition with one of the GMs in the league to take all the mofos down. Cuz at SBG, that's what we do......we keeps it pimpin'. I just always wanted to say that. By the way, here are the highlights from last night's Cavs Knicks game.....Check out the swat!

New York State of Mind

Cleveland (10-3) @ New York (7-6)

Madison Square Garden gets a chance to see the King up close and personal tonight. Could a potential free agency that is still two years down the road get any weirder and yet so intriguing? The King's free agency is still two years away but teams are already reshuffling their rosters in order to have the necessary cap room to sign LeBron, Wade or Bosh. IN the case of the Knicks, the recent trades they have made would put them in a position to go after two of those three. And you have to figure that the two they want are #23 and #4. The biggest challenge right now for all those teams, is to clear cap space and field a competitive team. Let's be real, it's on thing to play 42 games per year in New York City, but if the team is a sub .500 team; why would anyone consider playing there when Cleveland for instance can offer James more money and also happen to be able to compete for a championship. That being said, I was having a talk with Philly about this on Sunday; but Danny Ferry must be sweating bullets right now. Ferry's future is now, if they don't win a championship before LBJ's contract expires he'll be out like Marbury, hence the reason why he's looking at everybody and they MAMA which is what they would be getting with Vince Carter. (I'm really trying to have this become the new expression; Marbury: to leave with all your money i.e: 10$ for a lapdance?!?!!? Forget this I'm out like Marbury; To withdraw yourself from an activity, with no apparent reason or injury, that you specifically show up for: Yo Larry Johnson, it's Herm ima need you to run 20-25 times on Sunday…Yo coach, I'm out like Marbury...).



Now back to the topic at hand, the Cavaliers will face off tonight against the Knicks in what should be a great game in terms of contrasting styles. The Cavaliers are like Bret Hart in terms of their surgical execution on the defensive end. They wear you down with great defense and go in for the kill in the fourth quarter with LeBron acting as the Hitman's signature move, the Sharpshooter. New York on the other hand is more like Shane McMahon. They get up and down the court and right now we are not sure if they belong or not in the same sentence as some other top teams. But place them in a game against anybody in the league, and at some point you are bound to see something entertaining or exciting. Although reckless, Shane knows how to give the crowd an entertaining match. He will dance, jump from a steel cage, taunt and complain to the referee which is pretty much shades of Mike D'Antoni. The Knicks coach is legendary for his complaints to officials. He acts mad, stomps the ground and yells at the refs like they stole his toys (and if all else fails, D'Antoni can always bring out Eddy CUrry to play the role of his body guard nad be his Viscera--check picture). Essentially that's what you should be prepared o see tonight as the crowd is in full MVP chant mode after every LeBron basket after the fourth quarter. Expect a good contest with the Cavs prevailing in the end 110-105.







Sharpshooter






Shane McMahon

NFL Recap Week 12

Houston (4-7) @ Cleveland (4-7)
Pick: Cleveland wins 24-17
Reality: Houston won 16-6
Well, so much for my movie analogy with Brady Quinn. I had him coming in and saving the day Matt Ryan style for the Cleveland Browns but turns out I was a little off on my prediction. I guess Quinn will have to grow into the role and get his team to compete better. However, chances are it will be under another head coach. On a separate note: How smart is Bill Belichick? Only Eric Mangini has managed to do well since leaving his side. Romeo Crennel and Charlie Weis on the other hand have struggled in their head coaching jobs. Think about it, in some way, it means Belichick knew how to get the best out of them when their best currently is not proving to be much. The man is seriously a football genius. Approach at your own discretion.



Tampa Bay (8-3) @ Detroit (0-10)
Pick: Tampa Bay wins 24-16
Reality: Tampa Bay won 38-20
Tampa Bay proved my point. Although they were shaky early and got down 17-0; that defense turned itself into Nate Dogg CD album and quiete the crowd down and just completely took control of the game while the Lions fell apart.
Random observation: Michael Jordan used to soar to the basket and stick out his tongue, Sam Cassel does the huge testicles dance after a big shot, Chris Bosh pounds hi chest with four fingers (he wears #4) after a huge dunk and Vince Carter does the motorcycle rev whenever he impresses himself with a huge dunk. However, no other NBA player would dare imitate them. It’s as if the NBA is the ultimate team sport for players personal agendas. Essentially, the NBA motto is: “If I do me, I better never catch any one trying to do what I do how I do.” But in the NFL? They embrace that. If a corner returns an interception for a touchdown, he better make sure that he holds the ball out high and high steps all the way to the end zone like Primetime Deion Sanders or else have is return considered weak. You have to love the NFL.


San Francisco (3-8) @ Dallas (7-4)
Pick: Dallas wins 27-17
Reality: Dallas won 35-22
All is well in Cowboys land. Against the 49ers, Dallas scored, defended and T.O. got his. Let’s just wait for the next game in which Owens is covered by a defensive back and a safety and gets held to 40 yards and he starts saying once again: “I can still play, I mean you know, it’s just the system.” Here’s a thought that for you Cowboys fans: Does T.O. really need to get involved for Dallas to win? Look at the Giants for instance, do they try to force feed the ball to Plaxico Burress? Of course not, they play with a balanced offense and do not look to get one guy going, but rather get the whole team flowing. Probably a concept that is foreign to wide receivers.


New York Jets (8-3) @ Tennessee (10-1)
Pick: Tennessee wins 23-20
Reality: NY Jets won 34-13
Well what do you know, the old man can still slice up a defense. I figured the Jets had the weapons to win in Tennessee, but blowout the Titans? I was not expecting that at all. Let’s see how Tennessee responds in their next three games against a trio of fries (Detroit), nuggets (Cleveland) and a soft drink (Houston). The Jets on the other hand get a combo of a steak sub (Denver), cookies (San Francisco) and chips (Buffalo). So any of you guys hungry?

Buffalo (6-5) @ Kansas City (1-10)
Pick: Buffalo wins 20-17
Reality: Buffalo won 54-31
The Washington Wizards fired head coach Eddie Jordan after a 1-10 record to open the season. The team still has 71 games to make up for the bad start and make the playoffs but still felt that the axe had to drop. I bring this up because the Chiefs currently have the exact same record but only have five games remaining before the end of the season. The Chiefs can still salvage their season by performing well and winning their remaining games but I highly doubt it will occur. I mean, you’re probably having a bad year when your top three highlights of the season are these:
1-Tony Gonzalez requests to be traded to a contender and then Carl Peterson (Chiefs GM) proceeds to trade him to Green Bay only to back at the last second and have the trade fall through;
2-Larry Johnson gets suspended for spitting on a woman at a club;
3- Buffalo lights up Kansas City for a Gilbert Arenas like 54 points.

You know you’re doing something wrong when the highlights of your season are things affecting your team negatively. This has all the makings of a WWE script gone wrong; kind of like Bret Hart's last days with the company.


Chicago (6-5) @ St. Louis (2-9)
Pick: Chicago wins 23-17
Reality: Chicago won 27-3
Remember early in the season when the Rams had their own category of bad? They were so terrible that the Donovan McNabb that you saw get benched against the Ravens lit them up for 361 yards and three touchdowns. Well ladies and gentlemen, they’re back! Let’s see if they can go on a run and get the title of worst ever. I have confidence in you St. Louis, do not let me down.


New England (7-4) @ Miami (6-5)
Pick: New England wins 24-20
Reality: New England won 48-28
Right after the game, Cassel goes home and takes out his Blackberry and starts texting a message:
"Thx 4 letting me play with your toys, Moss &Welker are great. Heard u had a 2nd knee surgery and might have another one in December, I can only hope you’ll be ready by next season cuz if not I'll still be here throwing TDs to 81 &83. In case you don't recognize the number, it's Matt......Cassel.........starting QB for the New England Patriots,
Take care Tom"



Minnesota (6-5) @ Jacksonville (4-7)
Pick: Minnesota wins 19-16
Reality: Minnesota won 30-12
I picked Green Bay to win the NFC North, but Minnesota keeps hanging in there on the heels of their defense and running game. I can’t believe I am saying this, but they are starting to remind of the Baltimore Ravens. Not the Superbowl Ravens, just the Ravens that get into the playoffs with a tough defense and solid running game. If theey ever get a quarterback – paging Donovan McNabb – watch out for them. Speaking of Donovan…


Philadelphia (5-5-1) @ Baltimore (7-4)
Pick: Baltimore wins 24-21
Reality: Baltimore won 36-7
Trailing the Ravens 10-7, Eagles head coach Andy Reid decided to bench Donovan McNabb thus resulting in a blowout loss. The McNabb situation is eerily reminiscent of Vince Carter’s last few days with Toronto. Casual observers forget this, but fans had turned on Carter way before he went to New Jersey. The fallout started when Carter’s body would not hold up during the regular season and Vince was playing just about the same amount of games as Shaq (never a good thing). In the summer of 2004, the organization asked Carter to give his input on some management decisions but they never acknowledged his opinion (according to Carter himself). Carter thought they should trade the fourth overall draft pick (which was used to select Chris Bosh) for a veteran big man. The Raptors went on and still drafted the “new franchise” and then #15 asked to be traded. Toronto then eventually traded Carter in December of 2004. The Raptors have since been to the playoffs twice and not once have they made the second round. Eagles fans keep calling for the head of McNabb; but are you really prepared for the same scenario? Don’t you say you never got a warning. This is the step by step blueprint for gutting your team for the foreseeable future.

Oakland (3-8) @ Denver (6-5)
Pick: Denver wins 31-20
Reality: Oakland won 31-10
Oakland defeated its biggest rival on Sunday in the Denver Broncos. The Raiders finally overcame their own handicap (you know, the guy calling the shots is not really the guy calling the shots because the other guy is calling the shots, get it?) and won a game……in convincing fashion!! A team that was barely functional and unable to generate any type of offense put up 31 points on that Denver defense. Mind you, the Rams (yes the putrid St Louis Rams) offense might be able to put up 30 against that horrible Broncos defense. Oakland gets to sit at the grown up table this week.

Carolina (8-3) @ Atlanta (7-4)
Pick: Atlanta wins 24-20
Reality: Atlanta won 45-28
There are several ways I could go about talking about this game; but the one I thought what suit best would be Young Jeezy and the Jigga Man:
“I PUT ONNNNNNNNNNNNNNN!”
In case you have yet to figure it out, my formula for Atlanta is simple; everytime they win I drop a line from rap song by an Atlanta rapper. Only fitting right? That’s what I thought.

I put on



New York Giants (10-1) @ Arizona Cardinals (7-4)
Pick: NY Giants win 27-24
Reality: NY Giants won 37-29
When you win a championship in any sport, the following season you enter opposing stadiums with a bull’s eye on your back. Every other team is out to get you and prove they are lion slayers. The defending champion essentially becomes the hunted. Rarely do we see the hunted become the hunter (except for every modern Harrison Ford movie, like seriously change roles dude). There might be more examples, but off the top of my head, in the past 15 years, I can only recall the Chicago Bulls run during the 90’s, the Los Angeles Lakers run earlier this decade and right now the New York Giants. Some of you might mention the Patriots and you might even have an argument there but I disagree. The Patriots were the hunted but never completely outmatched a team the way the Bulls and Lakers did, and the way the Giants are doing currently. The Giants are going on the road and muscling teams around and turning contenders into pretenders. They have just dominated teams (remember what they did to Baltimore last week) on both sides of the ball and seem to be getting bigger and better with each game. Where opposing teams see an opportunity to make a statement by beating the Giants, the Giants see an opportunity to show teams that they do not belong (think of Jennifer Lopez towards the end of the movie Enough). The G-Men are like your mother’s cooked food. You think it’s good but since you’ve had it for so long it does not impress you much. However, once you leave the house and taste food from some other place, it hits you how great your mom’s grub is.


Washington (7-4) @ Seattle (2-9)
Pick: Washington wins 20-17
Reality: Washington won 20-17
Warren Sapp reported on NFL Gameday morning on Sunday that the Redskins have benched Jason Taylor. In the words of Bugs Bunny, what’s up doc? Washington is playing well and winning right now, but is Taylor that bad to warrant benching? We are talking about a guy that terrorizes offensive linemen and quarterbacks. Perhaps he no longer has it. What, you were expecting me to talk about the game? No dice.

Indianapolis (7-4) @ San Diego (4-7)
Pick: Indianapolis wins 24-21
Reality: Indianapolis won 23-20
If you want to win games in the NFL, you have to take chances and believe in your team to come through no matter what. The term that applies here is high risk high reward as opposed to it ain’t trickin if you got it (the new overused rap line). The perfect example of this came in the Sunday night game: Indianapolis had the ball at the 50 yard line with 27 seconds left in the game on fourth and inches. Conventional wisdom suggests punt the ball because if you go for it on fourth down and fail to convert, you give San Diego the ball back at midfield with two timeouts. Indianapolis defied that logic and went for it on fourth down and converted on a play action pass that set up the winning field goal. In terms of risk, this would be on par with R. Kelly filming himself doing “stuff” with minors (ok maybe not, and yes he was acquitted). That being said, you must dare to be great.

World’s Greatest



Green Bay (5-6) @ New Orleans (6-5)
Pick: New Orleans wins 31-27
Reality: New Orleans won 51-29
You have to love the Saints. After scoring their final touchdown in this game, they actually attempted a two point conversion (which they failed). Mike Tirico second guessed the decision and mentioned he would have kicked the field goal but did not really question the decision. I mention this because had the Patriots tried this last year with the same exact score, we would have read about it in Sports Illustrated and ESPN’s Tuesday Morning Quarterback; they would have singled out the Patriots as the most evil team in the history of sports. The Saints do it (and I love watching the Saints play, just making a point) and it won’t get much of a mention because New Orleans right now is a mere 6-5 in contrast to New England who had a perfect record at the time they were running up the score.

Ballers Network

A few weeks ago, I sent an email to the Ballers Network (associated with Dime Magazine) asking them to possibly feature our team on their site. Earlier this week, I received a response from them asking to get some information on the team. So what better way to give them some info then to present to them our squad from top to bottom. So if this is your first time tuning in, go ahead and browse and get to know our team and our site. Feel free to leave comments (we always respond in a timely fashion) and make sure you keep coming back as we post information on our team and tackle whatever other issue we feel relevant to discuss. Without further ado, the SBG…….
The Silverback Gorillas were assembled in August 2007. We then joined the Montreal Basketball Association and then proceeded to win the league title as the #2 seed. The Gorillas came back this year with an additional member. Unfortunately, he was injured in the first game of the season and has since assumed coaching duties as a result of the temporary absence of our usual head coach. The team has responded nicely and is now playing the best man to man defense in the league and instilling fear in the process. Our goal at this juncture is to win the title once again and go undefeated in the process. I now present to you the Silverback Gorillas.

















Player: Supreme
Jersey #: 0
What he does for us: Coach the hell out of us
Catch phrase: “Don’t play at their level”
Hometown: Lasalle
Teams played on: Lasalle Cavaliers, Edouard-Montpetit
2008-2009 stats:
First dude you see in vid




















Player: Qwest
Jersey #: 1
What he does for us: Shoot, handle, entertain and get his hair braided
Catch phrase: “Suis pas down!”
Hometown: He would say Brooklyn, but we’ll go with Longueuil, Quebec, Canada
Teams played on: Longueuil, Edouard Montpetit, Denver Nuggets (NBA 2K)
2008-2009 stats:
8.8 points/game
1.3 fouls/game
6 made 3pt fgs
6 games played





















Player: 50 (on the left)
Jersey #: 2
What he does for us: Currently injured, so his role right now is that of a coach
Hometown: Saint-Leonard, Quebec, Canada
Teams played on: College Francais, Vanier, UQAM
2008-2009 stats:




















Player: Cid
Jersey #: 3
What he does for us: Trash talk, crack jokes, rebound, defend and score
Catch phrase: “Chéké”
Hometown: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Teams played on: Bois de Boulogne, Andre-Grasset
2008-2009 stats:
10.7 points/game
1.5 fouls/game
5 made 3pt fgs
6 games played


















Player: Shyne
Jersey #: 4
What he does for us: defend
Catch phrase: “Pablo!”
Hometown: Port-Au-Prince, Haiti
Teams played on: College Francais, Edouard Montpetit
2008-2009 stats:
4.8 points/game
0.8 fouls game
0 made 3pt fgs
6 games played






















Player: Philly

Jersey #: 5
What he does for us: Our enforcer and dude that keeps us straight
Catch phrase: “B*tch *ss”
Hometown: Saint-Francois, Quebec, Montreal
Teams played on: College Laval
2008-2009 stats:
1.0 point/game
2.2 fouls/game
0 made 3pt fgs
6 games played




















Player: G-No (on the right in the pic)
Jersey #: 7
What he does for us: Score inside, rebound, intimidate and posterize dudes silly enough to get in his way
Catch phrase: “Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh” ( the sound of the players and crowd after his dunks)
Hometown: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Teams played on: College Laval, Dawson College, Niagara University
2008-2009 stats:
15.3 points/game
1.5 fouls/game
0 made 3pt fgs
6 games played




















Player: D
Jersey #: 8
What he does for us: Defend, rebound, score inside
Catch phrase: “…”(silent assassin #1)
Hometown: Laval, Quebec, Canada
Teams played on: Montmorency
2008-2009 stats:
6.8 points/game
1.8 fouls/game
2 3pt fgs made
6 games played




























Player: Randy
Jersey #: 13
What he does for us: Rebound, pass, physical presence and score
Catch phrase: “Yes, BUT”
Hometown: Brossard, Quebec, Canada
Teams played on:
2008-2009 stats:
10.8 points/game
2.7 fouls/game
0 3pt fgs made
6 games played
Fast forward to 0:12 second mark, he’s the huge Robocop




















Player: Pirate
Jersey #: 16
What he does for us: Our point guard, he leads us and finds open teammates
Catch phrase: “…..“(silent assassin #2)
Hometown: Saint-Francois, Quebec, Montreal
Teams played on: Nobel de Laval, Edouard-Montpetit
2008-2009 stats:
4.6 points/game
1.3 fouls/game
1 3pt fg made
5 games played




















Player: Superstar
Jersey #: 23
What he does for us: Everything. Score, defend, rebound, lead, pass, shoot, crack jokes and also the GM.
Catch phrase: “Sauce”
Hometown: Saint-Francois, Quebec, Canada
Teams played on: College Laval
2008-2009 stats:
15.7 points/game
1.3 fouls/game
4 3pt fgs made
6 games played
Dude in the Carolina gear






















Player: Ralph
What he does for us: Coach, play hard, defend
Catch phrase: “Sub” (C’mon you gotta admit that’s original)
Jersey #: 21
Hometown: Longueuil, Quebec, Canada
Teams played on: College Francais, LaPrairie Lions
2008-2009 stats:
0.0 points/game
0.0 fouls/game
0 3pt fg made
2 games played

NFL Picks Week 12

Houston (3-7) @ Cleveland (4-6)
This has all the makings of a movie. Starting quarterback plays well (Derek Anderson) but not great and fools people into thinking he is the next big thing. Eventually, his performance warrants him getting replaced by the new kid on the block (Brady Quinn). The kid comes out and plays well and wows the fans and the media. He posts a record of 1-1 as a starter and gets the whole city thinking about the future while he endlessly hooks up with a bunch of groupies (c’mon man, you know that’s how it really goes down). After defeating the Bills, he breaks his finger but refuses to sit out because he knows it might cost him his job if the guy from before comes back and plays great. All we need is for Brady Quinn to start making music videos and we’ve got “Steamin” Willie Beaman (portrayed by Jamie Foxx in Any Given Sunday) all over again. Expect great things from the kid.
Cleveland wins 24-17

Any Given Sunday




San Francisco (3-7) @ Dallas (6-4)
At halftime of the Bengals-Steelers game, NFL Network aired a portion of a Deion Sanders interview with Terrell Owens. T.O. being T.O. just couldn’t resist the urge of putting himself at the forefront. Prime asked Owens if he would prefer to win a championship or just get the numbers; to which Owens replied that the championship will come if he gets his numbers. He also added: “I can’t throw it and catch it, I can only do one thing, it's the system man”. Not once did he mention that he drops some easy balls, or that the team performs better when Marion Barber is focal point of the offense. As usual, all about T.O. That being said, you can still win with a guy like that on your team, the one thing you hope is that he does not contaminate some of his teammates. I hope the Cowboys win the Superbowl this year just so someone can write a book of everything that goes on behind the scenes. On another note, congrats to coach Singletary for getting his first win last week. The culture change process is now in effect in San Francisco.
Random question: Earlier this season, the Rams had planned to add an incentive to Jim Haslett’s contract where he would automatically become the team’s head coach (basically losing the interim label) if he won a certain amount of games. The league stated that the contract violated league stipulations because it did not respect the Rooney Rule (the Rooney Rule states that a minority must at least get the chance to be interviewed in the event that a head coaching job becomes available). I can only wonder, would the 49ers be able to hire Singletary right now for the job considering the fact he is minority or not?
Dallas wins 27-17


Tampa Bay (7-3) @ Detroit (0-10)
I almost picked Detroit to pull off the upset in this one. The one reason I did not is because I usually tend to stay true to my rules: a great defense is on the road is like a Nate Dogg album; it keeps the crowd quiet and out of the game. In contrast, when a bad defense goes on the road, it’s like Michael Jackson (in his prime) concert. The defense gives up so many points that the crowd just goes crazy: some people cry, others faint and some say this is the best moment of their lives. Watch out the next time Detroit goes on the road. They are giving up 30.8 points per game; good for 31st in a 32 league team.
Tampa Bay wins 24-16


Michael in concert (watch how people lose their mind)




I dare you to not bob your head



NY Jets (7-3) @ Tennessee (10-0)
The Jets go on the road into the lion’s den and try to slay the top team in the league. This would normally have all the makings of a great game until you remember how erratic Favre is at times, especially in the face of pressure; and to quote Heltah Skelta, the Titans will lock it down with that full court presha . Simply put, David will have to slay Goliath and make sure he he has been beaten and battered to death because that’s exactly what Tennessee would do to them. Want a better idea what the Jets need to do? Think of Mac taking on Mike Tyson in Punch Out. Watch below….
Tennessee wins 23-20


Taking on the champ


Buffalo (5-5) @ Kansas City (1-9)
This game reminds me of the show Making the Band. Remember how Dylan just kept messing up time and time again and Diddy just kept trying to give him chances because he sensed that he had potential. Dylan was getting the opportunity of a lifetime but just could not see past his needs to see the big picture. The Buffalo Bills right now have been given several chances. Earlier in the season they were able to capitalize on them but have had trouble doing so as of late. This week, the NFL aka Diddy gives them a chance and get them to play against the Chiefs.
Buffalo wins 20-17


Chappelle makes fun of Dylan


Chicago (5-5) @ St. Louis (2-8)
I might have picked St. Louis to win this one at home if Steven Jackson were playing, but once I heard he had been ruled out for this game, it got a little easier to pick this game. It’s like watching CSI without Gil Grissom (portrayed by William Petersen), which by the way is coming soon and happens to be the reason I stopped watching it; the show will not be the same without his smarts, his fondness for insects, his inability to cope with emotions and his father figure presence on the show. See how much CSI is losing? Well the same holds true when Jackson sits out. The offense is simply not the same without its workhorse.
Chicago wins 23-17


New England (6-4) @ Miami (6-4)
The Patriots are out for revenge after losing badly to Miami early in the season at home. That was the game that the Dolphins unveiled their wildcat formation. Bill Belichick is the Dr Willy of the NFL (you know, the evil genius in the game Mega Man) and knows how to devise a great game plan better then most. That evil genius is one scary dude that you can never count out regardless of the game and the odds. As long he is at the helm of the Pats, I will never expect them to be underdogs.
New England wins 24-20


Mega Man 2


Minnesota (5-5) @ Jacksonville (4-6)
I think Minnesota goes on a run to try to capture the NFC North starting with this game against Jacksonville. I can see Adrian Peterson running wild on the Jaguars front seven and stiff arming everyone in sight. I don’t think there’s anything more fun to see at the running back position then a good stiff arm. That usually gets me pumped, especially when you see the defenders head cock back in the action. Yes, I just used the words stiff, fun, head, cock, back and action in a football column and you barely noticed at first.
Minnesota wins 19-16


Philadelphia (5-4-1) @ Baltimore (6-4)
Two of the best pressure teams in the NFL. These defenses come after quarterbacks from every possible angle. However, the Eagles rely on their passing game to win games while the Ravens rely on field position and their power running game. However, at the end of the day, this game will come down to who knows how to bang with the big boys. The jury is still out on Baltimore but Philadelphia has already shown that they are not ready for primetime. It’s like having a Saturday morning show like Power Rangers play at 9:00pm on Thursday night; the lack of ratings might get the show canceled because the show is aimed at certain demographic, but that same demographic is in bed when the show is on. This Sunday, the Eagles are the Power Rangers on a Thursday night.
Baltimore wins 24-21


White Ranger vs Green Ranger


Oakland (2-8) @ Denver (6-4)
Remember in high school, there was always at least that one foreign guy that people made fun of because he dressed weird and had a funny accent and seemed petrified of the cold when winter came around. Unbeknownst to me at the time, I was that guy in high school. So essentially I was somewhat of an outsider that several people made fun of with great delight but I was too stuck in my ways to figure it out. Looking back now, I understand all of this. In the NFL, the Oakland Raiders are the foreign kid, and the others kids in the class are talking real bad about them. Unfortunately, they are too stuck in their ways to figure this out and it might take quite some time. Raiders fans are hoping it doesn’t take them as long as it took me to notice.
Denver wins 31-20

Fez


Carolina (8-2) @ Atlanta (6-4)
I know Atlanta lost at home last week but NFC South teams just cannot seem to win on the road against other NFC South teams. It’s as if the road team was Benzino and the home team was Eminem; meaning you can expect some type of unexpected attack with vicious shots taken at Atlanta, but that tin the end one team is just far superior to the other playing in its own element.
Atlanta wins 24-20
Benzino disses Em : Die Another Day

Eminem disses Benzino: Nail in the Coffin

New York Giants (9-1) @ Arizona (7-3)
After 12 weeks of NFL football, Kurt Warner has emerged as an MVP candidate thanks in large part to the Cardinals record and also his gaudy numbers. He is first in the NFL in quarterback rating at 105.5, first in completion percentage at 70.9%, second in touchdown passes with 20, second in passing yards with 3155 passing yards and first in completions with 270 completions. However, one guy that gets little to no MVP consideration is Eli Manning. The overall numbers are not as high as Warner; he does not lead the league in any major passing category but is still in the top 20 of every passing statistic. Furthermore, he has led his NY Giants to the second best record in the NFL while also playing in the toughest division in football. This reminds me of the Tracy McGrady and Kobe Bryant debate from a few years back. One guy was carrying his team with huge numbers into the postseason (McGrady) while the other had very good numbers but was winning championships (Bryant) on a team with the most dominating player in NBA history. McGrady was the MVP candidate. Arizona is up and coming right now, but I can’t see them defeating the Giants right now. Mind you, if they win, it might give them a swagger that takes them all the way to the NFC title game.
NY Giants wins 27-24


TMac vs Kobe

Washington (6-4) @ Seattle (2-8)
Canibus will break down this game for us:
“Canibus is the type to fight for mics
Beatin n*ggas to death and beatin dead n*ggas to life,
If you look at me long enough,
I start to read your thoughts,
If the signal is strong enough,
Then I’ll call your bluff”
Way to call the game ‘Bus.
Washington wins 20-17
4,3,2,1

Indianapolis (6-4) @ San Diego (4-6)
During pre-game warm-ups , Colts back up running back Dominic Rhodes will walk to the 50 yard line and give LaDainian Tomlinson a dap. Then they start talking:
Rhodes: What happened to you man?
Tomlinson: What you mean?
Rhodes: You used to be the most feared man in football like two years ago man.
Tomlinson: I’m the same dude man, I still make people miss.
Rhodes: Nah son, you not getting the yards or the TDs you used to.
Tomlinson: Who you think you are man? You can’t be talking to me like that, I’m going to the Hall of Fame one day, what you got on your resume punk?
Rhodes: My resume includes a cool 113 rushing yards and a TD in the Superbowl and a Superbowl ring.
Tomlinson: HA HA HA HA , good one man; I almost believed you.
Rhodes then takes out his Blackberry and goes into his favorites menu and displays the link http://www.pro-football-reference.com/boxscores/200702040chi.htm .
Tomlinson responds: Ain’t that a b*tch!
Indianapolis wins 24-21
Green Bay (5-5) @ New Orleans (5-5)
Game should be competitive but I think New Orleans airs the ball out against Green Bay the same way they’ve done all season. The Saints have all the makings of a Jim Jones track this Sunday:
“We stay fly, no lie,
And you know this
BALLIN”
New Orleans wins 31-27

Crawford traded for Harrington

ESPN reports that the Golden State Warriors traded Al Harrington to the New York Knicks for Jamal Crawford. You can find intricate details of why the deal happened here : http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=3717209.
The Knicks made the trade for obvious reasons. Every GM in the NBA has circled July 1st 2010 as possibly one of the most important dates in the history of free agency. Lebron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh will all become free agents then (unless they sign extensions prior to that) and teams are all trying to clear up cap room to have the money necessary to make a run at one or possibly two of these superstars. There's also the fact that Harrington is perfectly suited for D'Antoni's style of play, but that ust happens to be a bonus.The Knicks are playing it very smart. Mind you, could this trade signal the return of Marbury?


I wonder though, what is Golden State thinking? The trade looks wonderful for them until you realize that Jamal Crawford is essentially the same guy as Montae Ellis. He is a player that can play both guard positions but is better suited as a scorer instead of a set up guy. In addition, he is an average defender but he will however probably get along with Stephen Jackson. All of these guys got along when Baron was there but he knew when to score and when to pass. Now? There might not be enough balls for every one to handle. This might shake out like the Rucker League. Guys just dribbling and looking to score one on one with no intent to play any kind of defense. Should make for some interesting highlights; but don't be surprised if you hear about a fight breaking out in practice.


P.S. To Daryl Morey (Rockets GM), please please please please trade Ron Artest to Golden State.

Path to Greatness

I have been working on a post about the teams this year that have the best chance to win the NBA title. Mind you, it's not only about winning the title, it's about doing it in style. So essentially the idea was to think about who could the championship this season and do so in amazing fashion while taking out some of the best players of their generation. Think about, to win a title this year, you might have to go through Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett, Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Dwight Howard, Allen Iverson, Chris Paul and so on. Should make for some great basketball in the spring. In the meantime, we can only speculate. So here we go, with our first "Path to Greatness" post, courtesy of Phill, I present to you the Houston Rockets.


As I sip on the corona that's in my left hand, I can't help to wonder why in hell I would ever choose the Rockets when Shyne asked me to write something about one of a list of teams that could contend for a title this year. I guess you can say I'm just stupid but I just like a challenge. The Rockets are disappointing 7-5 and, as Bill Simmons put it in part 2 of his last Sport's Guy mailbag, T-Mac is looking a lot like Penny right now. His season averages are below his career averages and once again he's hurt (if there's two guys in the NBA that we can guarantee are related it's T-Mac and Vince Carter). Ron-Ron's FG % is below average and so is the scoring but his contribution is not measured in stats or in bars but in swagger. His role his two swole his teammates' balls like Oakley did the Knicks. (To this day the best Raptor trade ever is Oakley for Camby. Camby is arguably the best defensive player of his era, with the ability to score and rebound but Oakley took the Raptors from purple dinosaurs, to a team being one shot away from a conference finals appearance against the Bucks…yeah the Bucks where in the Conference Finals less then 10 years ago.) That's where the trouble begins; Yao Ming has to get hulk-like quick. If he can start acting and playing like he's 7-6 310lbs aka his actual size he can be a monster. He's not Gheorghe Muresan, he's not Manute Bol and he's definitely not Shawn Bradley. He can shoot and handle the rock and he's f@#%*@g bigger then anybody. If Ron Artest can't get you to be hulk-like then no one can, because Oak is retired. However I have to factor in the facts, the Rockets sit atop THE toughest division in the league without their best defender B.R.(before Ron) and most versatile player B.R. Shane Battier. Most of their key players are hurt but if they can coast until they are all healthy, the team that won so many games in a row last season could sneak into the playoffs. They could have two shutdown defenders, one True Warrior, one "all-star" center and a player who scored 13 points in 33 seconds... against the Spurs.

NFL Recap (thursday game)

Cincinnati (1-9-1) @ Pittsburgh (8-3)
Pick:Pittsburgh wins 24-17
Reality: Pittsburgh won 27-10
The Steelers handled their business at home as predicted against a bad team. Nothing special to say there. But something struck me as I was watching the game, and it's something that has always been there but that I never actually noticed. Pittsburgh head coach Mike Tomlin coaches his Steelers as if if he were out on the basketball court in the hood. He is extremely demonstrative (especially when the refs make a call he dose not agree with) during games and he talks to his players almost as if they are his homies. I am not going to debate whether the effectiveness of his coaching method (his team is 8-3 after all) but I just thought it was intriguing that he coached the team with the swagger of a dude the from the Cage (basketball court in Montreal located north of de Maisonneuve at the corner of Papineau and the start of Jacques-Cartier bridge). When I look at Tomlin during games, I can't help but think of Sidney Dean (portrayed by Wesley Snipes) from the movie White Men can't jump. Remember all the smack talk and cockiness in the movie? That's what I see when I look at Tomlin. From now on, I strongly encourage everyone to refer to him as Coach Sidney.


Sidney

Triumph

Boston defeats Detroit 98-80
Let me drop this info on you right now; I missed the Lakers Suns game last night because it was late as hell. However, I did catch the Pistons Celtics game (missed the first quarter because I was watching Smallville, tons of sexual tension on the show) and boy did the Boston defense impress. They swarmed Detroit like they were killer bees….speaking of which, Ol’ Dirty Bastard wants to drop a like:
"What y'all thought y'all wasn't gon' see me?
I'm the Osirus of this shitWu-Tang is here forever, motherfuckerIt's like this ninety-seven
Aight my niggaz and my niggarettes
Let's do it like thisI'ma rub your ass in the moonshine
Let's take it back to seventy-nine"


That was the first half. Both teams were feeling each other out but Boston still had a slight edge going into the half and kind of let Detroit know at that point that things were not in their favor. As the third quarter starts, Inspectah Deck interjects on behalf of the Celtics players:
"I bomb atomically, Socrates' philosophies
and hypothesis can't define how I be droppin these"

Side note: anyone notice that since Garnett’s arrival in Boston last year, the Celtics players have now become huge trash talkers in the games? Look at the interactions during the games and especially during the stoppages in play, these guys just cannot stop chirping on the court. But obviously, the guy that started it all, as I previously mentioned is none other then KG. Believe it or not, Method Man had predicted this:
"As the world turns, I spread like germs
Bless the globe with the pestilence, the hard-headed never learn
It's my testament to those burned
Play my position in the game of life, standin firm"

Well so much for the game, it was basically over by the third quarter thanks in large part to a 24-12 run that blew the game wide open. Celtics defense terrorized the Pistons into forcing 16 turnovers that usually resulted directly in a basket. Boston essentially handled their business at home while Detroit goes back to drawing board to tweak a few things and have some needed practice time with AI. U-God stops by to drop some wisdom about the rematch of last year’s Eastern Conference finalists:
"Olympic torch flaming, we burn so sweet
The thrill of victory, the agony, defeat
We crush slow, flamin deluxe slow
For, judgment day cometh, conquer, it's war
Allow us to escape, hell glow spinning bomb
Pocket full of shells out the sky, Golden Arms
Tune spit the shitty Mortal Kombat sound
The fateful step make, the blood stain the ground"

Before I go, just wanted to mention that maybe we need to see more Amir Johnson in the Pistons line up. In the fourth quarter a lone I saw him come up with several hustle plays that might have helped the game stay close. He went hard to the glass, got a few dunks and blocked a couple of shots. Might something worth looking into. Ol’ Dirty Bastard drops a last line before sending us off:
"The saga continues
Wu-Tang, Wu-Tang"




Larry Whose?

Remember when Larry Hughes got traded from Cleveland to Chicago and he said on national television that he did not enjoy his time in Cleveland because he was asked to play point guard on a winning team while making more money then anyone else on the team? Well, that same dude is back! Big surprise right? Hughes is now griping about his playing time.
Hughes mentions: "I have a lot to offer as far as helping guys out. I want to be a positive influence. But not being out there in crucial times, I don't see the benefit."I hate to break it to you Larry, but you were never as good as you thought you were. Article is here:
http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/basketball/bulls/chi-20-bulls-hughes-chicagonov20,0,7500144.story

NBA Picks

Detroit (8-3) @ Boston (10-2)
When Joe Dumars traded for Allen Iverson, what he had in mind was changing the core of his team but still keeping the team extremely competitve. Turns out he got more then what he bargained for. Although it is only November, the Pistons have won a road game at the LA Lakers and last night won a game against Cleveland. Tonight, the Pistons face against the Boston Celtics. The AI experiment should be out in full display tonight and I am anxious to see how Boston defends him after seeing what Iverson did last night against the Cavaliers. I suspect the Celtics will bring a great game plan and try to push around the Pistons, but please believe Detroit will push back. I think Sheed and KG cancel each other out, Pierce gets a slight edge over Prince, Hamilton and Allen fight to a standstill but Iverson carries the Pistons home to a victory that will get the media talking about how Detroit might be the best team in the league. ESPN will put Detroit at the top of their Power Rankings, Sports Illustrated will write a piece about Iverson and how this is his best chance to win a title and so on. Do not be fooled. Teams will take a while to adjust to Detroit but will eventually figure them out.
Quick random note that is not so random: Every time Iverson gets traded, he says "This is the best team I've ever been on man, this will be my best chance to win a championship". Could we be at a point where Iverson gets traded every two years and utters those exact words? Not that far fetched is it. Just remember I mentionned this when the year ends and Iverson is a free agent capable of signing with any team (yes ANY team) he so chooses.
Detroit wins 85-81


LA Lakers (8-1) @ Phoenix (8-4)
Although the Kobe vs Shaq games have lost some of their luster, I still think the games are fairly good. Especially when you consider what Shaq did when Rodney Stuckey of the Pistons came driving to the basket. Shaq took his ass out like he was hired by Tony Soprano. Fast forward to tonight, what happens when the dude coming to the hoop is Kobe Bryant? I'm not saying I'm hoping for a repeat, but anything remotely close wouldn't hurt the ratings. All kidding aside, what I want to see is how this improved Suns defense matches up against what I would consider to be the most efficient offense in the NBA. The Lakers should be able to get what they want but the wildcard in this one is Amare Stoudemire and Shaquille O'Neal. If they decide to be physical and push around the Lakers, I really expect them to fold. If all else fails, Shaq can still come out and halftime and perform "Kobe tell me how my ass tastes".
Phoenix wins 104-100