I’m so excited, I’m so excited (and not even scared)

Last year I did a traditional pre-season breakdown of the league, and going into the playoffs I was supremely confident that my prediction of a Suns-Pistons final would come to fruition. Alas, Tim Duncan’s genius, terrible officiating, and the Pistons’ decision to continue to coast on the glory of the 2004 Finals got in the way.

So I’m not going to waste my time this year with half-baked analysis of who’s the team to beat—we’ve got 82 games left for that. Instead, I’m going to just list the twenty things I’m most excited about for the NBA this year (in no particular order):

1. TNT broadcasts. Standing idly by while the Joe Bucks of the world suck the joy and life out of sports has left me a shell of a fan. But just hearing Sir Charles on the Bill Simmons podcast or on Conan last night began to rejuvenate my weary soul. The TNT guys honestly, earnestly, passionately love the league they’re covering. Which is nice.

2. The arrival of my Jason Maxiell and Amir Johnson jerseys. I couldn’t decide which one to buy, and I can’t decide who I’m more excited to watch play this season. If they’re not both in the rotation for the Pistons, I’m going to use this blog solely to further the theory that Flip Saunders intentionally blew the Cavs series to support his hometown of Cleveland. I may do that regardless.

3. Having an interesting team in Boston. I’ve lived in Boston for five years, during which the once mighty Celtics have either sucked or relied way too heavily on Antoine Walker bombing threes. I want the Celtics to be just good enough to lose to the Pistons in game seven of the EC finals.

4. The fact that they don’t play John Mellencamp during basketball games. Thank god (Afrika Bambaataa) for hip-hop.

5. Getting to watch Shawn Marion play basketball. It’s so much nicer than hearing about Shawn Marion not wanting to play basketball.

6. Kobe for Dirk, straight up. Get it done Cube.

7. Hearing the reaction to Lebron at his first home game. He took you to the finals! He repped the Yankees! Cleveland fans must have Larry Craig-level internal contradiction going on.

8. Going to see the Knicks at the temple of the NBA, Madison Square Garden. I don’t have tickets or anything yet, but I will make this happen.

9. The Houston Rockets, team of mystery. I wasted a fantasy basketball draft pick on Steve Francis, who I thought was ready for some renaissance ish. But now he’s not in the rotation? Rafer is better than the Franchise? Mike James is better than the Franchise? Luther Head is better than the Franchise? Who could possibly have seen this coming?

10. Kobe going to anyone but the Bulls. Please. I really don’t want the Pistons facing him on a regular basis.

11. Kevin Durant. Tayshaun’s upper body and Jordan’s potential. If you’re not excited by this, you’re Joe Buck.

12. Acie Law, Josh Smith, Al Horford, Marvin Williams, Sheldon Williams, Joe Johnson, and the Atlanta Hawks. Frightening upside here.

13. Rasheed Wallace. I’m always excited to watch Rasheed Wallace. I’m like a battered spouse who can’t get over the courtship of 2004. No matter how many times he wrongs me, I keep going back.

14. Allen Iverson. I like to think of myself as a whiter, bloggier version of Allen Iverson, with one hundredth the talent and one thousandth the drive, and similar talent for rapping and practicing.

15. Melo, DWade, and Chris Bosh. The ones that got away.

16. Jason Kidd. I promise myself this is the year I finally appreciate Jason Kidd.

17. Tony Parker’s rap career:

18. Dirk’s ringless fingers. It’s kind of like when Peyton Manning was smashing records and blowing playoff games. When all was right in the world, before Peyton revealed himself as a likable, funny, cool-headed champion. Where’d my archetype go?

19. Manu Ginobili. Not for the three or four hours per game night when he’s complaining about the refs or about the impact of trade deregulation on the Argentinian economy. But when he’s dunking in traffic, bald spot shining like a beacon of hope for mankind. Or at least for me.

20. Your 2008 World Champion Phoenix Suns. Come on, I can’t pick the Spurs. I just can’t. It’s like picking gravity to stop a little kid from flying.

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11 Responses to “I’m so excited, I’m so excited (and not even scared)”

  1. zachary Says:

    look for a jub jub tonight from barkley! courtesy of conan.

  2. sloan Says:

    he better be good on his promise.

  3. Pat Says:

    The best thing about TNT is they now have TNT HD! Its amazing and beautiful and lovely….they may have always had this but i just didn’t get it in ann arbor? I’m not sure but i’m looking forward to watching games in hi definiton.

    But….i’m not looking foward to watching the bulls at all whatsoever. I hate the bulls, their stupid franchise and their stupid logo and their stupid traitoring forward center more than any other team on the planet. This part of living in chicago could force me to move within a few seasons.

    I also picked the bulls to win the east even though i despise them.

    Jerry that picture of you in the wheaties box was money.

    My new pistons prediction…

    Improved play from Maxiell, Amir Johnson and minutes for Stuckey and Afflalo will have an impact on the pistons but their best reserve will be Jarvis Hayes. Hayes i believe is only 25 or 26 years old and has looked damn good in the preseason. Yes, i know its the preseason. However, Hayes can score, rebound and defend. I think he’s going to be a sixth man of the year candidate. I’m also a homer.

  4. Pat Says:

    One other thing, the signing of Hayes reminds me of a hybrid of the free agent signings of Billups and McDyess. The Billups comparison comes from him being a guy who has shown flashes but never been consitent or put it all together before coming to detroit but is still a young player feeling out the league. The McDyess comparison is obviously with the injuries. Hopefully the magical Arnie Kander continues to work wonders and Jarvis stays on the floor for a full (breakout!!!) season for the pistons.

  5. zachary Says:

    conan is always good on a promise barkley better be good slip it in like “you see that jub jub of a shot from ginobilli?”

  6. sloan Says:

    I have complete and total faith in the magical powers of Arnie Kander. Think of how lucky we’ve been in health matters over the past four years. He’ll probably have Jarvis scoring 19 off the bench. In which case I am perfectly happy to get another jersey.

  7. broseph Says:

    man i have no idea what this jub jub thing is about, other than the obvious relationship between simpsons and conan. but i did get the saved by the bell reference. jerry knows what i like. hot sundae.

  8. Pat Says:

    Theres at least one quarter of the time where conversations turn into things i have no idea what anyone is referencing or talking about. Zach’s post made absolutely no sense to me. Joe’s as well was quite perplexing. No need to explain, just know that you guys are confusing as hell.

  9. sloan Says:

    Conan donated a thousand dollars to a charity of Joe Buck’s choice because he agreed to use the nonsense word “jub jub” during the World Series. Conan then agreed to give Barkley I think two gs to drop it during TNT’s coverage.

  10. zachary Says:

    jub jub is conans favorite phrase and hes trying to get late night to take over media by having this phrase used during major telecasts. apparently his technique is to donate to peoples charities if they use it. joe bucks was kinda lame but he did use it. im sure the round mound of rebound will do better.

    hot sundae was the all girl super group of jessie spano, kelly kapowski and lisa turtle. unfortunetly they never made a record because jessie had a caffiene pill addiction. (she had to get good grades). you tube: “im so excited saved by the bell” theres like a 5 minute clip that might jub jub your memory.

    an afternoon at jeanie sloans (what last name does your mom use??????) house might be filled with me jojo or jerry saying “im so excited im so excited im soooo scared” followed immediatly by jerry yelling “youre gonna feel the wrath” then pummeling me and jojo or perhaps even reese as we laugh uncontrollably.

  11. sloan Says:

    once a sloan, always a sloan!

    i haven’t thrown the elbow in a while. might be less effective in my current, downsized state.

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