A new NBA season starting tonight, so chill the Cristal, cue the Ali G intros one more time and dig yourself our from under the avalanche of previews and photo-shoot brainwaves that arrived this week.
And mindful of that mound, a different direction here. Toward small. One-word answers, and little more. (And one more thing -- tomorrow we're going to throw open the blog to a free-for-all on the Raptors' upcoming season, so if you've got anything to say enter the comments and enter often. If you've got a question you want answered, send it along and I'll try).
Here's the panel:
Scott Carefoot, whose Raptorblog is an essential destination for anyone looking for independent and informed online Raptors comment -- hard to find, that combination.
Disillusioned Former NBA scribe (DFNS), who despite all evidence to the contrary has an interest in all things NBA -- oh, and happy birthday!
|Shaq's Heat have a new look -- and are perhaps walkin' all the way to the finals.|
Me. Because I'm here. (I had one more, a longtime Clippers fan, but he's not here, away on honeymoon in Italy. Poor guy, honeymooning in Italy instead of being here for this fun.)
Here we go (* -- check footnotes at bottom):
Yawn! Everybody agreed on the Spurs as NBA champion. It's sort of the free spot on the bingo card, as Dave Feschuk noted in today's Star (Feschuk picks the Heat, a noble try -- but if he really wanted to be contrary, why not go whole-hog and take the Cavs?).
Rookie of the year:
Scott: Chris Paul, Hornets
DD: Danny Granger, Pacers
DFNS, me: No idea.
Raptors win total:
First wardrobe violation:
Me: Mark Cuban
Word association: LeBron James
|VINCE TALOTTA/TORONTO STAR|
|The Raptors are a young team.|
|Suns will need a laying on of the hands from Steve Nash to keep from setting before Amare comes back.|
DD: Joie de vivre
From Scott: "That's right. I said Steve Nash is overrated. Don't get me wrong, I love the guy. But he wasn't the MVP last year. He wasn't even MVP of his own team. That was Amare Stoudemire. Nobody but me (and Mavericks fans, I presume) seemed to notice that Dirk Nowitzki had his best season after Nash left. Remember, it takes two people to make an assist. A healthy Amare will dunk on your crown no matter who passes it to him."
From DD: "Nets threw a 2-3 matchup at (Mitchell) last year, he had no zone offence in place, and Nets had something like an 85-per cent success rate. so he goes on the postgame and blames his players for lousy execution. Postgame was piped into the Nets' coaches office, they hear him passing the buck, and they laughed their asses off."