A bunch of little stuff and the Dream Team revisited
Glen Davis back to Boston, no surprise.
Leon Powe maybe going to Cleveland even though he won’t play until at least the all-star break, no surprise.
Linas Kleiza headed to Greece for some stupid amount of money, no surprise.
Von Wafer not getting a gig in the NBA and allegedly going to be a teammate of Kleiza’s in Greece, no big surprise.
What we’re seeing these days, and what we’ll see over the next fortnight, I imagine, is a bunch of little things that will do nothing to alter the balance of power anywhere in the world and are of little or no direct consequence here in Toronto.
Those are the times we live in at the moment.
But that doesn’t mean there isn’t stuff, because there’s always stuff, it seems.
I wonder how nuts they’ll go in Los Angeles today when they get a whiff of this news about Pau Gasol.
Think they’ll call him “selfish” for putting his country ahead of his team? Rip him for turning his back on the franchise that got him off the scrap heap in Memphis and gave him a shot an NBA title?
Or will they shrug their collective shoulders, say it’s an injury that could have happened any time and with more than 2 1-2 months until the season starts it’s not really that big a deal?
I’m betting more of the last than any of the first two.
And I’m also crossing my fingers that no similar fate befalls Roko Ukic or Hedo Turkoglu or Andrea Bargnani as the summer goes on because if the same thing happens to any of them, I fear the comments section here might physically blow up from the stain it’ll have to handle.
That’s what I love – and hate – about our little passionate corner of the world.
Right. The Yankees.
Not tragedy but not good, either.
We resumed Sunday’s rain-suspended game, played to a 3-3 tie in a couple of innings and ended up losing by one.
Still have post-season life – it’s a double-knockout tourney – so there’s an even bigger game scheduled for Thursday if you’ve got nothing to do. We’re trying to get network coverage but it’s hard.
Someone wrote me to say a Philly report had Joey on some list – along with, I believe, his brother, Rodney Carney and another one or two guys – as possibilities to fill out the Sixers roster.
Aside from meaning nothing – it’s a list of possibilities and could very well have included you and me – I’m not entirely sure a team with The Gangster, Jason and Joey could really be considered a lock to retain a playoff spot.
We all know those Philly fans can be quite, ah, cynical in their estimation of Sixer additions, turning the franchise into Toronto South probably doesn’t sit too well.
Personally, I hope Joey gets a deal somewhere, he’s a good guy, relatively hard worker and who am I to say he should be denied employment. Just don’t think it’s going to be here.
Speaking of international basketball, we’ve got a whole other group of young Canucks to follow for a little while.
The girls under-16 Cadette team.
It’s a first time FIBA Americas tournament going on right now in Mexico City and they opened with a bang, as you can read here.
I know next to nothing about this group of girls – missed their three-day training camp right around the corner from me, unfortunately – but if they get to the inaugural worlds next year in France, it’s another feather in that developmental cap.
Oh yeah, all kinds of questions yesterday about the omission of the ’92 Dream Team from the list of teams I would have love to watch practice.
Well, the fact is, I did see them practice, I was a Canadian Press basketball scribbler at the Tournament of the Americas when they made their debut and watched them all through the Barcelona Olympics so they were not eligible, or something like that.
And, frankly, their practices were okay but nothing to write home about.
Two good stories about that first tournament out in Portland, if you don’t mind. (And if I’ve told them before, I apologize, the mind’s not quite what it used to be).
Standing in the hallway of the old Portland Coliseum talking to Jay, who was an assistant to Ken Shields on that staff, when who should come wandering down the hall but that Michael Jordan fellow.
Me? I’m pretty impressed just seeing him but it got stupidly jaw-dropping when he spied Jay, stopped, gave him a big hug and said something along the lines of:
“Man, you shouldn’t be coaching, you should be out there playing. You’re not done yet.”
They chat for a couple of more minutes while I stand there slack-jawed.
Second, not quite as good, story:
First game the Americans play is against Cuba and the game’s delayed a few minutes because the Cubans are in such awe they’re taking pictures on the court right before the tip.
The Dream Team wins by about a billion and I’m trying to come up with a lead to the story. Witty dude that I am, I figure the historical nature of the event played off should be the angle. I write what I think is one of the good first grafs, file it to the desk in Toronto, go about my business and am a bit surprised and disappointed that the editors cut the opening paragraph because they thought it was too political.
You tell me, would you continue reading a story that opened:
“PORTLAND, Ore. – If only the Bay of Pigs had gone as smoothly.”
Oh yeah, another thing about this quasi-vacation I’m on? I don’t feel compelled to get up just after 6 a.m. to finish this thing off each morning so I’ll be relatively tardy for the next couple of weeks.