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, June 24, 2002
The Next Post . . . After This One of Course

I am going to scout colleges . . . no, not for basketball. I am narrowing the choices for where to do my super senior and super duper senior years at. Due to this, I will be gone until the 2nd of July. this means you all will have to wait for my innevitable rant on the draft and how it serves as an example as to why the Warriors suck. So until then . . . adios.

Saturday, June 22, 2002 Mock Draft

First round only. Some slight differences from the other drafts, but not unbelievable.

Thursday, June 20, 2002 Mock Draft

DeJuan Wagner at 4 to Memphis? From the other drafts I've seen, that looks unlikely. Also only covers the lottery picks. Mock Draft

"Sports Illustrated senior writer Ian Thomsen projects the first round of the June 26 NBA Draft." Picks for the first round with one liners.

Tuesday, June 18, 2002
Today's Mock Draft(s)
No reasoning stated behind the picks, but the page has lots of other things (international prospect reports, draft prospects broken down by class, etc.) that are worth a look. 2002 NBA Mock Draft
Very similar to the mock draft. Provides some analysis.

ESPN NBA Draft Page
Mock draft, stock reports, analysis and all the latest news. ESPN has it all and it's all well done and up to date. ESPN is the place to go for sports news and the draft is no different.

Monday, June 17, 2002
NBA Draft

Yes, the draft is in 9 days and everyone and their mother is doing mock drafts. So I am gonna do one right? Wrong. I am not so full of myself to think that I know these players after having only watching pieces of the NCAA tournament. However, this doesn't mean that I will be ignoring the draft. Instead of forcing my uninformed views on all of you, I will force the views of others on you. Each day or two I will link a mock draft here with a bit of commentary from me on it. So without further ado: - From the Baseline (4/17)
You all know how highly I think of John Hollinger's stuff. This is his mock draft that covers the first round. There were 9 names (out of 28) in his mock draft that I had never even heard of before. And that folks, is why I am not doing my own mock draft.

Wednesday, June 12, 2002
1000th Hit for EotB!!!!!!!

EotB got its 1000th hit today!!!!! And it only took 6 months!!!! On a serious note, I want to thank the readers, Ben and Ryan for their help with the site, and whoever else I may have forgotten. If you want a speech, read this and substitute "hits" for "award."

WNBA players threaten to strike next season

You know what it means when you see "WNBA" in the headline on this page, don't you? It means it is time for me to drum up some feminist hate mail by ridiculing women's basketball in some way. So away we go.

Now if you were gonna strike, wouldn't you want to have leverage? Yes. Someone should tell the WNBA players that. They play in a league that would have folded already if it weren't for the backing of the NBA and even David Stern admitted last week on The Last Word with Jim Rome that the league was not profitable at this point. The players want better pay. Three words for that: supply and demand.

"'The players have been extremely reasonable in their demands,' [WNBPA director Pam] Wheeler said. 'They've made sacrifices to help make the league grow. Even if (the WNBA) doubles salaries, proportionately it is significantly less (than other pro leagues).'"

And that would be a great fact to use except for the small detail that other leagues make money and the WNBA just eats up the NBA's money. Demand for bad basketball is low (go figure) so therefore you get paid less. The players also want better marketing rights. Something from nothing is still nothing. It's not like those New York Liberty jerseys are flying off the shelf. Hey players, you have no leverage!!!!! If the WNBA strikes in a forrest, does anyone care? No!!!!!! If they strike, the league won't even be back. The only way they could be more stupid about this is to get Richie Phillips to represent them.

Instant replay expected to be implemented

"Hmmm, maybe we should implent instant replay at the end of quarters," says the NBA. Duh. It should have been done before this. Another interesting note mentioned in the article is that the Grizzlies and Timberwolves petitioned to move to the Eastern Conference and for the now New Orleans Hornets to be moved to the Western Conference. Apparently, they cited travel costs. However, it's not about their slim chances of ever getting out of the first round or even making the playoffs in the west (wink wink).

Lakers Win Again

Kobe Bryant . . . Shaquille O'Neal is MVP. . . Kenyon Martin good but not good enough . . . Lucious Harris ditches mask and finds shot . . . yadda yadda yadda . . .

Monday, June 10, 2002
O'Neal leads another Lakers team effort

Well, the Nets decided they would shoot well (except for Lucious Harris). They shot .518 from the field and .737 from the free throw line. The problem . . . their improved shooting coincided with Kobe Bryant's first appearance as a superstar this series. In games 1 and 2, Kobe was good but not great. In game 3 however, he took over down the stretch and he and Shaquille O'Neal combined for 71 points and 17 rebounds. If it's not one thing for the Nets, it's another. At this point, the Nets are gonna get swept. They need to do two things (1. Keep Kobe and Shaq around 60 points combined and 2. Shoot 45-50% from the field) and have proven that they aren't able to the two at the same time. They've had opportunities and just haven't been able to do anything with them. The Lakers were beatable in games 2 and 3, but the Nets couldn't do it. This series is done. Get out the brooms.

Saturday, June 08, 2002
Nets have no answer for Shaq after two losses

I don't know what else I can say about this game that I didn't about game 1. I actually watched this game, but it seemed like the Nets had many of the same problems, namely Shaquille O'Neal and shooting. O'Neal just missed a triple double with 40 points, 12 boards and 8 assists on 14-23 shooting. The Nets shot a woeful .349 from the field and .630 from the free throw line. That is not the way you win basketball games. The way the Nets are going, this series probably won't go more than 4. They need to mix in some shooting practice or something if they want to win any games in this series . . . that and figure out a way to at least slow Shaq down.

Thursday, June 06, 2002
Late-arriving Nets can't escape early hole

I have a confession to make. I didn't watch the game. I was at the Oakland A's game eating dollar hot dogs and watching the Mariners beat the A's 5-0. But from what I have read and seen in the box score I can offer some opinions. If you are the Nets, it's tough to win when you get down 23 in the first half, shoot .394 from the field for the game and .577 from the free throw line. Are they still free throws if you only make half of them? I think the key to this game was the fact that Nets only played three quarters while the Lakers played four. Personally, I saw game 1 as the Nets best chance to steal a game in LA. If they don't win game 2, I have a hard time believing that this series will go 6 games. Jason Kidd has a triple double (23/10/10), but did it in typical Kidd fashion shooting 11-26. On the other side, Kobe Bryant appears to have had a pretty quiet night (22 points on 6-16 shooting) and the Lakers relied on Shaquille O'Neal (36/16 in 40 minutes) to carry most of the load. If the Nets want to have a chance at all to have this series go more than 5 games, they must win game 2. If not, the series goes no longer than 5 games and maybe only 4.

Sunday, June 02, 2002
Lakers survive overtime thriller at Arco

The stat of the game was .530. That was the Kings free throw shooting percentage. They gave the game away simply because they couldn't mix in a free throw. The Kings kept it close despite that, but in my opinion you don't deserve to win when you shoot just over 50% as a team from the free throw line.

Now for the series recap. Wow, what a game and series. Overtime in game 7? What more can you ask for as a fan? 4 of the 7 games came down to the wire. The reason the Kings lost the series is free throws. For the series the Kings were 135-204, .662%. That's not gonna cut it. Mike Bibby was so clutch in this series. He was practically the only one scoring in the 4th quarter of game 7 and of course there was the shot at the end of game 4. Is he worth the max in free agency? I personally don't think so, but the Kings are probably gonna give it to him. Not sure what I think of that though. The guy underachieved during the regular season, but he was practically superman during against Dallas and Los Angeles. I don't think I would give him the max, but the Maloofs are all about winning and I don't think the luxury tax is much of a deterent for them. So now it is the Lakers and Nets in the finals. I'll stick to my original prediction of the West team in 6, which means Lakers in 6.