The National Basketball Association is upon us!
Help! Get it off! Zach Randolph is crushing me!
Finally, after nearly four and a half months without it (seriously, I’ve had longer bowel movements) the NBA has returned to save us from another crappy World Series, a we-don’t-care-yet NHL regular season and a newly-pussified NFL halfway point where players aren’t allowed to tackle each other anymore.
The Boston Celtics are again opening up the season as one of the favorites for the crown. And, jinxes aside, I have to agree. Paul Pierce and Ray Allen are still Paul Pierce and Ray Allen. Sixty-five percent of Kevin Garnett isn’t quite as worrisome with Rasheed Wallace and Big Baby behind him on the depth chart. You could make an argument that Rajon Rondo is the third-best point guard in the nation after Chris Paul (one) and John Wall (two). Kendrick Perkins has evolved from Beast into Monstrosity. Perk single-handedly manhandled Dwight Howard in the playoffs last year and we would’ve gotten by the coachless Magic if it wasn’t for Hedo & ‘Shard. Thankfully, in retrospect we now know why we couldn’t defeat Orlando. Because THEY ALL DO STEROIDS!
Around the league nobody really made a giant leap forward, talent-wise.
The Lakers look to be considerably worse than last year’s version (Still good enough to win the conference though). They basically lost their third and fourth-best playoff performers. Shipping Trevor Ariza off to Houston for Ron “I-Can’t-Defend-Your-Best-Player-Anymore-Unless-You’re-Sacramento” Artest; and trading Contract Year/Single Man Lamar Odom for Got My Money/Battered Husband Lamar Odom. Way to go, losers. [You should hear the confidence oozing out of the bandwagoneers out here. Thank dear God we don't let the people of this state make any real decisions.]
The Bulls got rid of the one man who almost gunned us out of the playoffs and sent him to Detroit where he’ll fester like a stale Charlie Villanueva fart.
The Cavaliers got Shaq, which is like Megan Fox gaining 30 pounds. I’m still takin’ her into the coat room at SkyBar but I’m not necessarily gonna be as excited.
No team really out-and-out improved their team from last year. Everyone made moves here and there, but the only team that looks considerably better is the Thunder and they’re still a year away.
The craziest thing of all for the 2009-10 Celtics is that we still employ Tom Thibodeau. He might be the best basketball coach in the league, period; and he’s still trudging along as our defensive specialist/assistant (to the) head coach. Perk and Rajon wouldn’t be remotely close to the players they are today without ‘ol Mr. Thibs teaching them how to stop a man dead in his tracks. Rondo is in serious contention for Defensive Player of the Year this season, thanks to Thibodeau and Doc. And I’m very excited to see Perk utterly demoralize Shaq Tuesday night on TNT (followed by an all-new episode of THE MENTALIST!).
This season doesn’t rest on Kevin Garnett’s knee. It rests on whether the rest of the Celts can step up if and when he does go down. And with the help of Doc, Thibodeau, Armond Hill, and the rest of the Boston staff; this particular team is both physically and mentally prepared. I’m not guaranteeing a second Boston title in three years, but all the signs are pointing toward a nice long spring in New England.