Friday, February 13, 2009

3 Point Semi-Shootout

So here we are. We have seen the Magic Alumni suck-fest that was H-O-R-S-E and the lack of skills competition so as Shawn Kemp would say let’s keep this gravy train rolling. Standard rules apply…5 racks, 5 balls for each rack with the last ball the money ball worth 2 points. You have 60 seconds to complete all 5.

Its time for 3 point shootout featuring: Current Magic player Brian Cook, current Pacer Travis Diener, Steve Francis, Doug Christie and Reece Gaines.

Let’s Get to Round 1…

Travis Diener goes to take the ball at the first rack but is escorted out by security who thinks he is some college hippie. He tries to yell he knows Larry Bird but that just gets him in more trouble. No points awarded.

Brian Cook plows through the first 3 racks like a Chinese Buffett but unfortunately after 20 seconds passes out from all the physical strain. Magic trainers sprinkle powdered sugar on his nose and he regains his faculties. 10 points awarded.

Doug Christie is next and as he walks up to the first rack flashes an I love you sign to his wife. He picks up the first ball and shoots an air ball. He then flashes the sign to his wife again and sneezes. Confused he flashes it again as his tampon falls out. He picks it up and flashes the sign again. Time expires and Doug Christie walks away with more I love you’s than points but on this Valentine’s Day No Ordinary Love will do.

Steve Francis goes to the first rack and automatically assumes he has to waste 23 seconds with dribbling and crossovers. Good thing for him he is able to get 2 shots off and makes them both. 2 points awarded.

Reece Gaines is up and last time he was in the NBA he did not miss a 3 pointer all season. He also did not take one either. As he walks up to the first rack he trips over his expectations again and is demoted to the CBA. No points awarded.

Finals: Steve Francis vs. Brian Cook

Brian Cook still woozy from before makes the first 4 but then tries to eat the money ball. 4 points awarded.

Steve Francis strolls up to the rack only needing 5 points. Unfortunately he keeps trying to bounce pass to himself and then shoot the 3. It’s a miracle nobody is hurt and he is awarded no points.

Winner: Brian Cook

The Orlando Magic All-time Skills Competition

As is the case this weekend for the NBA, the Orlando Magic have, utilizing wisdom that may or may not actually exist, taken it upon themselves to deliver unto us those same glorious mini-games that we'll see this weekend. With out any further ado, let us meet our contestants for the 2009, Orlando Magic All-Scrub Skills Competition:

Mark Price

Anthony Bowie

Brooks Thompson

Steve Kerr

Let's get down to the competition!

Kerr starts us off: Kerr makes the layup, before beginning a very leisurely stroll through the 1st series of defenders. He gets the first pass on the 3rd attempt, and hits the shot in one. The final pass is one he struggles with, before finally hitting it on the 4th attempt. After slowly dribbling through the second set of "defenders", Kerr manages to blow the final layup twice before finishing at 1:35.

Thompson is up next and gets a DNP-CD.

Bowie is up now, and he breezes through the course, showing surprising speed. Struggling only at the jump shot, Bowie breezes through the course with a cool mark of 57 seconds, guaranteeing him a spot in the finals.

Mark Price continues the long tradition he created in his run through Orlando of being so broken down, but still fundamentally sound enough, to not completely embarrass himself. By not blowing any passes or layups badly, he manages a time of 1:28, earning him a slot in the Finals.

In the Finals, Mark Price is up first, and manages to post a 1:28 that is entirely identical in every conceivable way to his first run. Further analysis reveals he'd actually passed out several hours earlier, and was quite literally sleep walking through the competition. It's decided that he should be allowed to sleep some more, though some are far more concerned that Price's pallor and general demeanor seem suspiciously zombie-like.

For his Finals run, Bowie again breezes through the course. With his score hovering around 45 seconds going into the final set of defenders, Bowie calls a quick timeout so that he can savor the moment and "make sure he gets the win". Ignoring the screams of the crowd, Bowie walks off the court, sips some Gatorade, and goes into a long daydream about how great this trophy will look on his wall until Sam Vincent finally snaps him out of his daydream long enough to tell him that there are no timeouts in the skills competition, and that the clock is still running. Bowie dejectedly finishes with a time of 3:36, leaving Mark Price our sleepwalking winner.

Winner: Mark Price's Zombie Corpse.
From everyone here at TPASTBM, we wish you and yours a *Happy Valentines Day!

*Note: By Valentines Day, we mean All-Star weekend.

Credit: for the photo, Google for the roses and teddy bear, and Fran Vasquez for being Fran Vasquez.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Fun and failure both start out the same way

Warning: This is one of those "the sky is falling" posts.

Hedo fumbled around with the ball from about 27 feet out, dribbled a few to his right and threw up a prayer over Travis Outlaw. It banked in. The Magic pulled one out from nowhere and improved to 17-5 on the year. Things were going good. They kept winning. Several weeks later Orlando was beating up on Atlanta by 38... And it was only halftime. They swept San Antonio and the Lakers. All over the internet Magic fans were demanding respect from ESPN, arguing that aside from the puns Orlando was playing forth fiddle to LA, Boston, and Cleveland, despite having the best record in the whole, wide National Basketball Association.

Everyone's favorite columnist at the Orlando Sentinel was jumping on the bandwagon, his shinny bald head visible from row T of the upper bowl at home games. Perhaps it was because Tim Tebow can only be talked about so much, but even Mike Bianchi was saying that this team must be watched. Boston came to Orlando on a Thursday and beat the Magic, but there was still plenty of rejoicing around town. After all, we really had a chance! That was just one game.

The All-Star rosters were released. Dwight was already in, but Jameer and Rashard were going to be joining D12 in Phoenix. Orlando was the only franchise with 3 players on the team. Cleveland's Mo Williams was disappointed, and it didn't get much better because the same night Orlando beat Lebron and Mo and the Cavs by 11.

A few days later, Jameer dribbles at the top of the key, looking for an opening. He takes a few to his right and spins through two Toronto defenders; a slick highlight move on the way to an easy layup. The win in Toronto seemed like another day at the office.

Then Jameer got hurt and things changed. The mood at Amway was somber as everyone knew the chances of winning it all died at that exact moment. But it wasn't necessarily because Jameer got hurt that it wasn't going to happen anymore. Ya see, us Magic fans fooled ourselves into believing we could do it at all. But when you think about it, it was never going to happen. Here are some of the reasons why:

  1. The Big Train likes the Magic. The list could stop here, but I'll continue.
  2. A team that relies so much on the 3 point shot won't be able to continue it during the playoffs when the game slows down.
  3. God revels in our disappointment.
  4. Many of the tools over at ESPN (Yeah, I'm talking about you Stephen A., Jamal Mashburn, and Jalen Rose) actually said the Magic were a legitimate contender.
  5. Dwight Howard, Jameer Nelson, and Rashard Lewis were on the All-Star team.
  6. Brian Cook still plays for the Magic.
  7. The Magic still had to get by potentially both the Cavs and Celtics, not to mention whoever would be waiting for them from the other side. Face it, the odds were still not too high.
  8. Our best player, Mr. Dwight Howard, is still the youngest player on the team.
  9. Tiger Woods would more than likely show up for some playoff games.
Of course there were reasons why the Magic could have won it all too. They have the best big man in the game. SVG is one of the best coaches in the NBA. Although they relied heavily on the 3 pointer the Magic are still one of the best defensive teams in the league. But why look at the positives right now when it is much easier to be depressed?

There is still a lot more basketball to be played this year, and crazier things have happened, so there's still a chance... Until the basketball gods remember that The Big Train is a Magic fan.

Thanks to Lifes Padawan and the pure genius of Arrested Development for the Fun and Failure poster. Also, Michael Cera better sign on for the AD movie. We all want to see it more than he will... Never know.


As a part of All-Star weekend in Phoenix, TNT has put together a game of H-O-R-S-E. Kevin Durant, OJ Mayo and Joe Johnson will be the participants. The rules are like when you played back in the day, except no dunking is allowed. Well, then, it’s exactly like when you used to play.

The current edition of the Magic has some pretty interesting players who could probably take one of these competitions. Rashard can shoot it from anywhere and we’ve been told for several years now that JJ can knock it down too. But what if we didn’t limit it to the 08-09 Magic but included all the men who were so lucky enough to put on a Magic uni? So, without further ado, here is the Magic’s all-time H-O-R-S-E matchup and how it might play out.

Tracy McGrady: Back in the day when he could dunk and run the entire length of the floor, Tracy was disgusting. When he was on his game he could pull up from anywhere and it was going in. Remember his 62? Baseline jumper, reverse layup, 3 pointer, half court bomb, turnaround bank. Count um’.

Dennis Scott: 3D could play also. Of course he could hit the 3, but he could hit it when it counted too. I’d imagine him starting off with a 3 from about 10 feet past the line and moving in close for some hook shots which might actually be kind of tough since it would require movement. Following the competition Mr. Scott could drop some rhymes or something.

Hedo Turkoglu: Hedo is the wildcard here. Sometimes he can’t throw it in the ocean, but when he’s on he’ll hit it from outside like the game winners against Portland this year and Boston last year, and he’ll throw in all sorts of silly fadeaways that he should not even be shooting in the first place. He is also creative enough to come up with some tricky shots that others might have never thought of.

Honorable Mention: They are only using 3 guys on Saturday, so I’m only going to put 3 Magic players in our little competition. There were some other guys that came close to making the list. Scott Skiles could probably bounce pass a few balls in the basket, and if not, just beat the shit out of the other two players. Morlon Wiley would be able to stick around. Lord knows he has found a way to stick around for the last 20 years. Also, Horace Grant's first name is somewhat like horse, so he has that going for him. And finally, Shawn Kemp, because at least it would be entertaining, which is more than can be said about this silly H-O-R-S-E roster for Saturday night.

The Match: Hedo goes first. Missed 3 from 7 feet past the line. Dennis Scott hits a 15 footer while eating a double bacon cheeseburger. Tracy strains his left ring finger while getting out of his chair. He is out 4 to 5 games. Hedo makes a fadeaway 20 footer while 3D misses. However, this is bad news for Hedo as he now thinks he can make it every time. He proceeds to miss the next 7 shots he takes, and somehow commits 4 turnovers despite the fact that turnovers aren't part of H-O-R-S-E. Scott takes the match by hitting simple, fundamentally sound jump shots.

Thanks to "stangita" from flickr for the picture of the horse with a basketball on its nose.

5 things Stan Van Gundy won't be doing during the All-Star Break

After a painful loss to the Denver Nuggets, SVG will have 6 days off before the next game against the Charlotte Bobcats. While players Dwight Howard and Rashard Lewis will be participating in the All-Star game and events, what will SVG be doing with his free time? Hopefully relaxing and taking his blood pressure medicine. Here are 5 things we know he definitely won't be doing.

5. Thinking about Brian Cook, and what type of role he may play in the team's 2nd half plan.

4. Making charm bracelets that read "BFF's 4 evah" for the entire team, and wrapping them in little gold boxes with smiley stickers on them.

3. Sending an email to Hedo Turkoglu telling him to shoot more.

2. Going fishing with Pat Riley.

1. Being inspired by Dwight Howard's recent style piece in ESPN the magazine, deciding to go out and buy a tie.

Whatever the coach may be doing with his free time, we here at TPASTBM hope he comes back refreshed, rejuvenated, and restached. Rest well SVG.

Credit for the photo

Magic Dancer Deanna Clover Appears in the SI Swimsuit Issue

As if the multiple all-star accolades weren't enough, the Orlando Magic now have one of their dancers appearing in the swimsuit edition of Sports Illustrated.

SI features NBA dancers in the 2009 edition and Deanna Clover was one of 10 dancers selected from around the league. Deanna is in her 5th season with the team and is currently the team captain.

I spoke with dancer manager Jeanine Thomas at last night's Magic/Nuggets game and she was extremely excited and proud of Deanna's accomplishment. She mentioned that Deanna had known about the SI appearance since last March but in order to seal the deal, she needed to make the 2008-2009 Magic dance team (veteran Magic dancers must re-audition each season). SI was only accepting dancers who were on NBA dance squads at the time of publication. So, Deanna had extra incentive to make the cut again this season.

Deanna Clover was one of two dancers to appear at the "Magic Message Board Night" that the team hosted last January for a game against the Bulls. She took her time to speak with the Magic fans in attendance, posed for photos, and did an all-around great job of representing the team. On top of all that, she is a great dancer and obviously has many pleasing asthetic qualities.

Here is the link to her SI Swimsuit photo gallery:

*Photo courtesy of Sports Illustrated.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Power Rankings: Its Puntastic

1. Lakers (42-9)-This Hollywood darling should win an Oscar for how they ran rampid through the East Coast.

2. Spurs (35-25)-Can we spur a trend and call Roger Mason Jr. Big Shot Rog without him having done it in the playoffs.

3. Celtics (42-11)-Home losses to the Spurs and Lakers certainly left Boston green with envy.

4. Magic (38-12)- We now hope that the AJ/Lue/Turk/Lee combo platter has enough tricks in their arsenal to keep the Magic on top.

5. Cavaliers (39-11)-We know the Cavs are feeling crabby this morning but we are in a giving mood. This is how you complete the game winning alley-oop.

6. Nuggets (35-17)-There is nothing Melo about bouncing back against Miami after a 44 point beatdown at the hands of the Nets.

7. Trail Blazers (31-19)-Brandon Roy continues to blaze teams with buzzer beaters as his latest victim was the Knickerbockers.

8. Hawks (30-21)-Despite injuries to key guys like Al Horford and Josh Smith Atlanta is soaring to their best record in over a decade.

9. Sixers (26-24)-I can feel the brotherly love over here as this team seems to get better and better without Elton Brand.

10. Rockets (31-21)-We might need to start giving T-Mac rocket fuel if those knees don't get better.

11. Hornets (30-19)-New Orleans certainly feeling the sting of losing Chris Paul as they have dropped 3 out of their last 5 including only an 80 point effort against the Grizz on Monday.

12. Jazz (29-23)-Deron Williams is playing fantastic but the loss to the Warriors after winning 3 in a row probably has the Jazz singing the blues.

13. Bucks (25-29)- The Buck stops at Sessions, Jefferson, and Villanueva as they become the first trio in 16 years to score 25 points and play less than 35 minutes.

14. Heat (27-25)-Can somebody tell me what the heck extinguished Shawn Marion besides the Heat trade because his numbers Pre-SSOL were still great.

15. Suns (28-22)-Speaking of SSOL it seems that the sun may be setting on that era with rumblings of an imminent Amare Stoudemire trade.

16. Pistons (27-23)-Chicago lubricating the Pistons defense for 37 points in the 4th last night makes it 3 games in a row the Pistons once stellar D has given up more than 100 points.

17. Pacers (21-32)-Danny Granger and the mustache bandits are the only team to beat the top 4 in the NBA this season and at this pace should make a nice run at the Eastern conference playoffs.

18. Bulls (23-29)-Nothing bullish about this guy's performance in the last 4 games as he is nearly averaging a double-double and finally proving to be the player many thought he would be.

19. Nets (24-29)-After abusing Denver all New Jersey has been able to net is 2 straight losses at the hands of Orlando and San Antonio.

20. Bobcats (20-31)-Charlotte has been pouncing on their roster ferociously as they attempt to completely revamp the roster.

21. Warriors (18-35)-Oracle Arena attendees get a golden effort on offense from the home team as the last time they did not score 100 was a home victory over Boston on December 26th.

22. Timberwolves (17-34)- Big Al Jefferson is done for the season and this young pack of Wolves is left to pick up the pieces.

23. Thunder (13-39)- Kevin Durant keeps bringing the scoring boom and this young team keeps getting more and more competitive.

24. Grizzlies (15-36)-It is a grizzly prospect to expect this team to do anything with Rudy Gay out although OJ Mayo will be playing H-O-R-S-E this weekend.

25. Raptors (20-34)-Any chance of Toronto making the playoffs appear to be extinct with Chris Bosh out with a sprained knee.

26. Knicks (21-30)- Even without Starbury and Isiah this Broadway production keeps getting more offensive as their defensive is a disgrace to the game of basketball.

27. Clippers (12-40)-I think they are going to need the jaws of life to clip Mike Dunleavy Sr. off this mess since he can't get fired and he will not quit.

28. Wizards (11-41)-It will take much more than a healthy spell from Gilbert Arenas to get this team out of the bottom.

29. Kings (11-42)-The only thing you can about this team is that they royally suck.

30. Mavericks (31-20)- You are in last because Ericka Dampier decided to take maverick law into his own hands and end Jameer's season. Jason Terry would like to see you in the trainer's room Mrs. Dampier.

What are you? Nuggnuts?

Tonight, our Orlando Magic play the Denver Nuggets in what should be a good test of how well our team is going to play without Jameer Nelson against quality teams. Here's some info to get us ready for the game.

  1. In a preview on Yahoo! Sports, reports are saying backup forward Chris Andersen is day-to-day with a left wrist sprain and left hip contusion. Andersen has 5 pts and 9 boards in the last contest against the Magic.
  2. The Nuggets are playing the 2nd game of a back-to-back against the Florida teams. They defeated the Miami Heat last night 99-82.
  3. Nuggets reserve guard J.R. Smith was named the replacement for Rudy Gay for Saturdays Sprite Slam Dunk Contest.
  4. Orlando is 6-2 with Anthony Johnson as our starter.
  5. Injured guard Jameer Nelson was actually selected by the Denver Nuggets with the 20th overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft. He was then immediately traded to the Orlando Magic for a future first round draft pick.
  6. *Brian Cook once consumed over 100 chicken nuggets in one sitting, breaking the All-Time Magic Nugget Eating record that was previously held by Shawn Kemp.
*Mr. Cook did not break the All-Time Magic Nugget Eating record, as the record does not actually exist. This statement was a work of fiction, and was in no way a knock on Mr. Cook, or his eating abilities. As a matter of fact, if Mr. Cook was able to consume 100 chicken nuggets in one sitting, I would be amazed and would owe him a handshake for the awesome accomplishment. Mr. Kemp also did not break any record, however, he would only get a head nod if he did.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Circle The Wagons

Today we have a guest post from a friend of TPASTBM and all-around good guy "Live or Die Magic," the Fan Voice over at - OCTB

Is the season over? Last week the pavements of central Florida ran red what with all the Magic fans jumping from the ledges. Meanwhile, the actual Magic team kept playing games:

  • A home win over the Los Angeles Clippers.
  • A road loss to the Indiana Pacers.
  • A home win over the New Jersey Nets.

Solid, if not spectacular. But this is where the Orlando Magic stand after losing Jameer Nelson for the near-future, and quite likely, for the season. So, you could argue that we are up and down right now. Unfortunately, as reflected by the attitude of the Magic fans on the Orlando Magic Message Boards, there seems to be a bit more down than up.

This season has seen our expectations picked up, tossed high in the air, and spun around to the ground. In a matter of a couple of months the Magic went from being a team that hoped to advance past the second round to being a title contender and now back to being a team that hopes to advance past the second round. This much change this quick is perhaps too much for the fragile Magic fan’s psyche. After all, we were taking baby steps, not leaps. Two years ago we finally made the playoffs. Last year we made it out of the first round. Season sweeps of title contenders San Antonio and Los Angeles, and a strong first showing against the Cleveland Cavaliers made us start to incredulously wonder if we were on a championship run in Year Five of the Howard era. There was even that brief, bright day when we owned the best record in the entire NBA.

The easy way out is to think that it is all gone now. No more chance for a championship. But for me, nothing has changed. The team’s goals should remain the same even without a vastly improved and confident Jameer Nelson in the lineup. Otis Smith placed photos of the O’Brien trophy all over the Magic locker room. He gave an O’Brien trophy pin to every Magic staffer. This was done in the preseason. This was done before Dwight Howard decided to become the most dominant defensive force in the game. This was done before Rashard Lewis demonstrated his comfort in the Magic lineup and his all-star level confidence. This was done before Stan Van Gundy started outcoaching pretty much ever coach he’s faced. This was before Courtney Lee forgot he was a rookie and made us forget the 2005-to-2007 drafts. And yes, this was before Jameer Nelson proved Otis Smith right and started outperforming his contract.

So, if the goal was a title before we actually had any reason to think it should have been a goal, how can we, in our grief at the loss of Nelson, discard that goal after the first half of the season has gone so far beyond our expectations? As Magic fans, we should be used to some heartache, some frustration, and even a sense of betrayal. All of that emotional turmoil should have steeled us for a “go for broke” mentality this season, with or without Jameer.

We all know that Jameer has a competitive nature. Surely it must be eating him up that he is likely going to miss the season. It is all the more unfortunate that this is occurring so soon after he was announced as an all-star for the first time. Like everyone else within the Magic organization, he has sensed the touch of greatness on this season’s team. Despite the sense of urgency for this season, I can only guess that he and the team are pursuing a more long-term approach to his injury. As fans, can we really argue against this? I know I can’t. Believe me, I would love to see Jameer attempt a short period of rehab and then give it a go sometime in April. But I understand and accept the decision to protect the long-term health of a young player with much promise in seasons to come.

As for the other players in the Magic locker room, they certainly wish Jameer was along for the ride. But that ride is still in progress and even if Nelson isn’t playing, their goals remain the same. Dwight isn’t going to play with any less exuberance and joy just because his buddy isn’t on the court with him. It just isn’t in his nature. With Nelson out, each of Rashard Lewis shots become even more important. Hedo Turkoglu, more than any other player (yes, even more than Anthony Johnson) has more responsibility with Nelson out. Now he must dictate the flow of the offense for longer stretches during the first three quarters and as for the fourth quarter, well, if he was Mr. Fourth Quarter last season…

Anthony Johnson, Courtney Lee, and JJ Redick all will see time at the point guard position. None of them are a replacement for Jameer Nelson but all have the ability to distribute the ball and create their own shots. Courtney Lee’s progress and Redick’s rebirth made Keith Bogans expendable, allowing us to trade for Tyronn Lue.

Speaking of the Lue trade, let’s all agree on the following clarification: Tyronn Lue is not a replacement for Jameer Nelson. Tyronn Lue is a replacement for Anthony Johnson. AJ went from back-up point guard to starting point guard. Tyronn Lue went from third-string point guard to back-up point guard. There is a difference. In fact, between Turk, Lee, and Redick getting minutes at the point, I think Lue should expect quite a few DNP-CDs in his future.

Bogans-for-Lue wasn’t earth shattering or even sexy. But it was solid. My biggest fear was that Otis Smith would make a trade that he wouldn’t have considered prior to Nelson’s injury. I had to laugh at all the speculation of Otis moving Turkoglu in order to replace Jameer. Seriously? Turkoglu is even more important now and it will be his playmaking ability that will be the best possible replacement for what Nelson provided to the team. Bogans was a player that was likely in his last season with the team and he is replaced by a player about which we can say the same. Our roster is not disrupted by a new starting-caliber player who isn’t familiar with our personnel or our system. Most importantly, we did not add salary that would have compromised our cap flexibility beyond this season.

Meanwhile, the team is still playing well. Sure, there will be an adjustment period for a few more games, but this team is still on pace to be a top team in the East. So here it is: if the Magic players are adjusting to the loss of Nelson and continuing on with the season, goals still in sight, shouldn’t we? My excitement isn’t diminished, my hope for the outcome of the season is still strong. Good things may still come from this setback. We still have incredible players and an incredible coach that are going out and laying it down each night for our enjoyment. There will still be playoffs, there will still be an overmatched first round opponent. And yeah, there will still be that 2nd round matchup with a Cleveland, a Boston, an Atlanta, or a Detroit. And Nelson or no Nelson, I can’t wait to see how our Orlando Magic respond to that challenge.

Credit the Orlando Sentinel for the photos

Monday, February 9, 2009

What do cookies and drafting have in common? Part 1

Nothing if you are a fan of NASCAR, but this is a basketball blog, so if you're looking for tips on how to ride someones bumper in traffic to save on gas, GTFO.

I love cookies. Cookies are good. Nothing beats the gooey freshness and warmth of a chocolate chip cookie fresh out of the oven. Let them sit a little while to cool off and they can be almost as good. Eventually some will be put into a tin and sent to friends around the holidays. They get a little crunchy, but still tastes great, especially with milk. Unfortunately, cookies don't last forever, and eventually they get stale. These are the four groups of home-made cookies. No matter what kind of cookie you like, if it's made by mom, it will fall into one of these four groups when you get your greedy, grubby little hands on them.

What does this have to do with drafting? I have (with a little help from my friends) begun to analyze the NBA draft over the past several years in an attempt to rate teams in order of drafting prowess. I have arbitrarily created a mathematical formula that means next to nothing in the realm of all things rational. I applied this formula to every draft pick from 1997-2007, and came up with a draft "score" per team. Averaging this score amongst their draft picks, I am able to rank each team based on their selections - and the performance of their selections - in the NBA.

In order to keep player perceptions out of the mix, I used Hollinger PER rankings as a measure of player performance. Teams get a bonus for years a player stuck around in the league, and a player's draft worth increases as their pick increases. An All-Star player picked first overall is not worth much because you expect great things from such an early pick, but identifying talent late in the draft can mean a significant bonus for your overall status. Think Dwight Howard vs. Manu Ginobli. Do the Magic get more credit for selecting Dwight overall when compared to the Spurs selecting Manu with the 57 pick in draft?

A couple points to keep in mind. This is draft picks only. This isn't to say that a team that drafts horribly can't be a decent team, or that a team that is excellent at drafting is a great team overall (though it certainly can't hurt). Also, if a team selects a player on behalf of another team, then trades said player to said team, the team ending up with said player gets credit for the selection.

Over the coming weeks, I will break down this list into four main groups.
  • Fresh out of the oven yummy cookies
  • Cooled off, but still fresh deliciousness
  • Out of the tin and still great with milk
  • Stale and ready to be thrown out
I welcome your comments, input, and pictures of lolcats equally. This is a beginning, and will be treated as such. Your inputs may impact the overall document, sway my thoughts on the formula, point out errors in my process, or just make me laugh at you. So, without any further discussion, I give you "Paul Ego's Draft Rankings".

  1. SAC
  2. SAS
  3. MIL
  4. PHX
  5. SEA
  6. GSW
  7. IND
  8. BOS
  9. CLE
  10. DET
  11. WAS
  12. UTH
  13. NJN
  14. MEM
  15. ORL
  16. NYK
  17. NOR
  18. LAL
  19. CHI
  20. PHI
  21. DAL
  22. MIA
  23. HOU
  24. DEN
  25. MIN
  26. LAC
  27. ATL
  28. POR
  29. CHA
  30. TOR
Next week: Hot and fresh out of the oven. The top five teams.

Music Monday

As we see Jameer on the bench every night in his dapper suits with the elbow patches we here at TPASTBM cannot shake how much we miss him.

  • Everytime "Pops" looks like he is going to have a heart attack or asthma attack we miss him.

  • Everytime Turk tries to do anything in crunch time and turns the ball over we miss him.

  • Everytime Turk's pass sails into the 3rd row we miss him.

  • Everytime we hear 2Pac's All Eyes on Me we miss him.

  • Everytime we have to hear STILL whether or not picking up Tyronn Lue was a good idea we miss him.

With that said our Music Monday selection is this fine tune by Miley Cyrus "Miss You"

Just let the chorus take over your heart and let the music set you free.

I miss you. I miss your smile. And I still shed a tear every once in a while. And even though it's different now. You're still here somehow. My heart won't let you go and I need you to know I miss you, sha la la la la I miss you.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Nets at Magic

A few quick links to get us ready for this evening...

1. In its game preview the USA Today tells us that Tyronn Lue should be available tonight. We do wonder however if we will see more of Lee at the point tonight since Devin Harris is lightning quick and really do not see AJ or Lue being able to contain him.

2. According to BS of the OS our old friend Keyon Dooling holds no ill will towards the Magic and has even leaned on Jameer for emotional support as his father is sick.

3. The Nets just laid a 44 point beatdown on a Denver team with Carmelo last night 114-70.

4. The Magic's next 2 opponents are coming off of back to back situations although that did not really help Friday in Indy. Without any numbers to back me up I think the concept of catching a team on the back end of a back to back is a little overrated. Just ask the some of our Western Conference friends who played Orlando earlier this season.

5. Please kids be aware tonight's game is at 6 PM.
Credit for the photo

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Orlando Magic News

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Credit "Sebi" from the Orlando Magic Message board for the title graphic.

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