The End of the Bench

Basketball blog with takes on basketball and anything related to basketball . . . as well as a haven for jingoists everywhere - in America.

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Monday, December 31, 2001
I am in Florida as we speak, hence the lack of posts lately. If some things don't show up the way they should, bear with me, I am on a Mac and am having difficulties with some of the features.

On to the news. The big story since Christmas has been Michael Jordan. First His Airness makes the sports page headlines by scoring a career low 6 points last Thursday against Indiana. This spurred all the talk about Jordan's age, stamina, etc. But just as everyone has been shown before, you simply don't bet against Jordan. Coming off the dismal 6 point effort, the Master Wizard goes for 51 against the Hornets Saturday and then for 45 against the Nets on Monday. I must admit that I was among those that said Jordan shouldn't try and comeback, but you just can't hold Michael down. Someone pass me the shoehorn. Michael put my foot in my mouth.

Wednesday, December 26, 2001
Issel Accepts Buyout From Nuggets

And you all thought I made that memo up didn't you? From now on I expect you all to refer to me as Mister Cleo.

Tuesday, December 25, 2001
Happy Holidays to all of you! I want to thank the readers for actually reading what I write. If any of you are interested in writing for End of the Bench in the upcoming year, get in touch. Be safe, have fun and keep reading EotB.

Sunday, December 23, 2001
Cal Bears Update

The Golden Bears of the University of California at Berkeley are now 7-1. Before we get to excited though, that includes wins over teams like Mount Saint Mary Mary's and Eastern Washington. Also all 7 wins were at home. The one loss of course was at Southen Florida. All that aside, 7-1 still looks good:)

However there are a few problems I see. One is how Solomon would probably get beat by Shaquille O'neal in a free throw shoting contest. A .379 FT% is awful. Also a 1.2 Team Assist to Turnover Ratio isn't great either. But you know what? 7-1!

So in conclusion Go Bears! and kick the crap out of those Harvard preppies. I'll worry about the Pac-10 conference schedule later:)

Saturday, December 22, 2001
Issel Asks for Leave of Absence

I have this as an exclusive. It is a copy of the memo Issel sent to request the leave of absence.

Dear Kiki,
I am sending this memo to request the leave of absence you told me to take so that I could come to the concusion that I should resign. I hope this will save the organization face for not having fired my ignorant ass right off the bat after "The Incident". Thanks for your time.
Sincerely, Dan Issel

Thursday, December 20, 2001
Here are some quick hits for all of you.

Problems in the land of the Suns
Stephon Marbury and Penny Hardaway got into a yelling match. Penny also got into it with Dan Majerle. A few notes on this: Dan Majerle is still in the league? He must be at least 110 by now. Second, for Majerle and Marbury's sake I hope Penny left his pistol at home where he only uses it to clean and get his wife back into the house.

Dampier to miss two games
Never saw this coming. I swear Erick Dampier is made of paper mache. He was having a nice season so far, and even though I knew this would happen I still weep for my fantasy team and how I now have no healthy centers.

Hearn's streak ends
3,338. That is the number of games Chick Hearn, the legendary broadcaster for the Lakers, had broadcast consecutively. Abolutely amazing. You know he sees picture if Cal Ripken and thinks "wuss". Hearn underwent open-heart surgery Wednesday night, which is why the streak ended. Get better soon Chick.

Wednesday, December 19, 2001
Wizards Beat Hawks for 7th Win in a Row

Don't look no but Michael Jordan and the Wizards are .500 and rising. I doubted that there would even be an improvement, but that is what I get for betting against Jordan. Fun trivia of the day: Name the 4 top scoring tandems in the NBA this season.

The first two are easy: 1st is Shaq and Kobe, the second is Paul Pierce and Antoine Walker. The third could be gotten with some thought. It is Dirk Nowitzki and Michael Finley. The fourth though, that is the real challenge. Michael Jordan and Richard Hamilton. Yes, that is actually the right answer. Michael and Rip are carrying the Wizards scoring wise.

Sunday, December 16, 2001
"I call him 'drunk-driver' in practice because he's always out of control."
- Bobby Jackson on Gerald Wallace after Wallace's 20 point 9 rebound performance against Memphis Sunday night.

Friday, December 14, 2001
Signs you may not be all the way back from that injury (#9):

Kevin Garnett puts up a line of 29 pts., 24 rebound, 8 assists against you. Now don't get me wrong, Garnett is amazing player and is probably my favorite non-Sixer in the NBA. However, when you are Chris Webber you shouldn't have anyone dropping a line like that on you.

On a lighter, NCAA note . . . At the Cincinatti-Xavier game, a guy hit a long distance shot for a million bucks. The funniest part is when he crossed over to football and laid a vicious hit on the blue blob looking thing that I assume is the Xavier mascot. While I am sure that the it was just an over-excited hug, that mascot is gonna be feeling that in the morning.

Wednesday, December 12, 2001
So I was watching the Wizards-Heat game (don't ask why, I don't know) and the half time show came on. The TNT/TBS studio crew is the best in basketball bar none. Kenny Smith, Ernie Johnson and Charles Barkley are funny as it is, but the funniest moments are when Barkley says something that makes the one or both of the others truly uncomfortable. A perfect example of this happened tonight. They were discussing the Dan Issel incident and Barkley basically said Issel should've just punched the guy out (to see the actual quote, see the comments for Ben's post on Issel). The way Johnson squirmed when he said that . . . classic.

You fire Dan Issel for that ethnic slur. There is no way he should be able to keep his job;

Tuesday, December 11, 2001
A quarter of the season has past and there have been some big surprises so far. Grant Hill is hurt and Nick Van Exel has done something detrimental to his team by demanding a trade . . . oh wait. That was the list of things I could have predicted 6 months ago.

But seriously, there have been some big time surprises. The biggest one being the New Jersey Nets. Everyone who knew the Nets were gonna even be respectable this year take one step forward . . . not so fast Tim. I think everyone knew the Jason Kidd pickup was a good one, but how many of you can look me in the eye and tell me you didn't laugh when you saw that Todd MacCullouch signing? A lot of this great start is due in part to the health of many of the players. Kerry Kittles, Keith Van Horn and Kenyon Martin are all healthy and contributing. I give it about a month, 6 weeks tops, before 2 of those 3 are hurt again ( 5 bucks says it is Van Horn and Kittles) and the team goes into a downward spiral. The reality is that they just can't afford to lose the good luck that Kittles' high socks bring.

Sunday, December 09, 2001
Big shout out to Ben for getting the comments up. The site is now interactive.

Saturday, December 08, 2001
Here it is, the first basketball related post. How random was that Jeff Van Gundy resignation? The Knicks probably weren't title contenders this year, but probably were a playoff team. Either way it seems so unexpected.

Permalinks are up, comments are in progress thanks to my partner Ben Matasar.

Sorry I haven't gotten the site going. I am working on getting all the features that I want on it.