Good Charlotte, the 2019 All-Star Weekend in that North Carolina city is just over a month away. But you’ve only got 12 days left to cast your choices. So it’s time to ‘Vote Or Die’ as P. Diddy once said in a time of Bush, were years later we ended up getting the great Obama and then two terms after that…well…erm…yeah. Sometimes we don’t learn from our mistakes. I know that’s true. But hey, this is a Canadian site. And this writer isn’t even American…he’s British. *Reads the paper and looks at our own political status*. Erm…
But hey, this right here isn’t that serious…yeah we say that. This is NBA politics as usual with everyone from Barack to Jay-Z voting on who they want summoned on court in Michael Jordan’s alumni city of Charlotte for the greatest show of the year. Our weekend of love in February. Our Superbowl before the madness of March. Let’s just be thankful the L got rid of those terrible ‘Twilight’ teams like when the NBA tried to reinvent the Dunk Contest with the wheel. Even though I’m firmly Team LeBron now. The only question remains is ‘who you got’?
And with two rooks and a couple of vets in a year of personal picks but no Rose (or Celtics or Warriors and not why you think), here’s our take…
LeBron James-Los Angeles Lakers
One in a million. Out in Hollywood new Los Angeles King LeBron James has already broken records by becoming the first player in NBA history to hit 1,000,000 All-Star votes in a year. So you could say this is a wasted ballot. But that type of attitude has no place in voting. This is history. This is a thank you. Plus the best player in the world is having a Most Valuable MVP year. He may even be the greatest of all-time. But we ain’t about to say that in Mike’s house.
Anthony Davis-Los An…New Orleans Pelicans
Kuzma, Ingram, even his new teammate Randle (told you we shouldn’t have let him go). We could have picked them all. But what self respecting Lakers fan in a Magic (nudge, wink) recruit isn’t voting for the Ant-Man this year? The last great of a dying breed of bigs. I mean do you even know how many of Paul George’s sneakers I brought last season?!
Russell Westbrook-Oklahoma City Thunder
Light the fuse. No George, but O.K. we will go with this OKC. Because there is no player in this league as exciting as Russell Westbrook in trademark Jordan’s in the Jumpman, Jumpman, Jumpman’s town. And boom goes the dynamite.
Luka Doncic-Dallas Mavericks
We really wanted to go with Dirk in his last year…but hey so did Dallas. But how good is this kid? Remember they used to say that about Kobe. The new Maverick Doncic is doing it all. We could write a new article about Halleluka every week and still not say enough. And we kind of do and don’t. You saw him take over Harden and Houston in the Texas derby. But how about how he looked after that kid he fell into courtside? Look at Luka. He’s on first name terms already like LeBron so you know he’s already an All-Star, let alone a problem. Rookie of the Year? How about MVP? We said at the start of the year after Drazen and Dirk when it’s all said and done Doncic could be the third best European player of all-time. He may already be there.
Yuta Watanabe-Memphis Grizzlies
Big in Japan, Yuta’s already going to amass the votes out of Asia. But between Gatorade breaks in the G-League and 1.2 ppg averages, just you wait. Soon Watanabe will make make his point. He won’t be just be the Grizzlies greatest big, versatile player since the Gasoline brothers. Out in Memphis he’ll soon do for Japan what Yao Ming did for a whole continent. If he isn’t already. Basketball has borders beyond the NBA and he has our vote for more than our love of the Far East.
Giannis Antetokounmpo-Milwaukee Bucks
Forget Hollywood. If I was to start a franchise today I’d begin with the man from Milwaukee like Lew Alcindor before he became Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Not even the King. But the most versatile, can play ever position player we’ve seen since Kevin Garnett. And for sure the most exciting right now. Tomorrow the Greek Freak will be the one and only best player in the association of Curry’s and Durant’s. Today let’s just have fun.
Kevin Love-Cleveland Cavaliers
What Love did for The Land after LeBron left was all heart. What Kevin did in opening up about mental health for everyone that suffers was pure soul. For those reasons alone he’s already one of our favourite players. But ever wrote off in LeBron’s old land all alone he’s reminding us of just how good he is, 30 for 30. He deserves his place regardless.
Vince Carter-Atlanta Hawks
Really we want to see him in one last Dunk Contest. Make it happen. A former young man in Toronto. We at Basketball Buzz are caught up in that Raptor rapture that used to be hate. But even though this is 40 the Vinsanity of Air Canada is still making flights. Carter can still get up. He want to see him get down one more time. All man. Still amazing.
Dwyane Wade-Miami Heat
And if we are making picking legends a thing. Hey they did it with Jordan and Kareem. How about a few Flash votes for one of the top five (or maybe even Holy Trinity three) Shooting Guards ever? Then Wade’s world will see Dwyane swapping his jersey with everybody. Save your pick for one last dance. Because I know who I want to see take it to the floor.
Kemba Walker-Charlotte Hornets
But finally and most fitting how you going to have an All-Star Game in the great Charlotte without the Hornet hometown hero? And possibly the most underrated All-Star in the NBA. Don’t believe me? Just do what the ‘Uptown Funk’ said. Watch! Buzztime baby…
Checkmate. D’Angelo Russell Eliminates The King’s Lakers
“I’m glad it’s you”, Hollywood icon Paul Newman told acting legend Tom Hanks in San Mendes’ gangster epic ‘Road To Perdition’ before Tom, Tommy Gun shot him down in the rain.
And here in Hollywood as Laker fans who are just glad it’s over, we’re glad it was by his hand. We’re glad it was D-Lo who delivered the final blow.
If you didn’t know that with the ‘Luke Cage’ like Notorious B.I.G. red portrait, new SLAM magazine classic cover with the crown that in Brooklyn, D’Angelo Russell was the new King of New York, now you know. And last night his crown with a gauntlet gem of infinity stones took the L.A. King, checkmate, endgame. Showing this games chess not checkers.
You passed your ‘Training Day’ kid.
You want to talk about karma Lake Show? Because this is more than a lesson learned, this is a fitting end to this courts chapter wrote by the Basketball Gods under the heading line, “what goes around, comes around”!
Revenge is a dime dish best served ice in his veins cold.
And now you’re season is done as the jello is jiggling in the refrigerator Chick.
But as D’Angelo had 21 points to go along with 13 double/double dishes as he set the table for what we thought would be his West logo 44 career-high smash, everyone ate as the Nets had a balanced diet and attack of the twine as they coasted the Lake Show 111-106 in a close game, albeit one that always looked like theirs. Another former Laker in big man Ed Davis got his with 14 and 15. Whilst sparky Spencer Dinwiddie got 19 and 3, DeMarregards Carroll 15 and 6 and big Jarrett Allen 13 and 11 as all the Nets went harder than his ‘fro. But the high man was Joey Buckets with 26 points. Including 6 for 8 from downtown New York as for some reason L.A. thought leaving Joe Harris-this year’s three point shootout winner at the All Star in Charlotte-as open as stores on the Dolly Parton, 9 to 5 shift wasn’t going to leave them crying like ‘Jolene’.
But now the Nets have taken their man it’s nothing but tears. With all due respect to George Gervin, D’Angelo Russell is the next generation iceman. As finger to lips he silenced STAPLES. The most passionately driven guard since Iverson. And he just stepped over the Lakers again, eliminating from the playoffs as Luke Walton watched his job go to Lue from the sidelines. Magic said this kid couldn’t lead as he gave the Ball to Lonzo. But now everyone is getting played by this big baller, as this number one leads his cutting Nets to the playoffs as an All-Star and Team LeBron end up being all for show. As number 23 will not be raised to the brackets for the first time since 2005. Let alone the finals for the last decade gone.
With all the jumbotron tributes from teams to past players right now (Isaiah *cough* Thomas, LeBron), the Lakers should play one of D’Angelo’s ice clutch shot the day after his grandmother’s death that won the game for the Lakers (unlike the castles bricks here tonight) as he fell into his family’s arms uptop the stands. And just end it with one word that says more than thank you…
I feel like Brad Pitt’s war wounded character with my ‘Fury’ for the team I love here. But like he says, “I’m trying to teach you something”. LeBron and the Lakers needed this. A season that started in bloom in the sunshine of California has turned to the Autumn leaves that have fallen to a crisp. Injuries were the problem, but then the reason came with the added insult of the Davis drama. And now this reality show is in disarray and it all came from Magic, not LaVar Ball. Imagine seeing that one in a crystal ball last Summer. The Zubac, Bryant (Thomas), Nance Jr, Clarkson, Russell and Randle-less Lakers need to learn from this and realize their formidable future of Lonzo, Kuz, Hart, Brandon Ingram (who is still two years younger than Lo) and maybe even Moe is not worth one man. Whether that’s Anthony or LeBron. Even a team-less Carmelo was out off joining this assembly line that has meme-d its way through good guys like Mike Beasley. This team could still be something (I mean this season like last nights City Edition threads has been ugly but somehow still appealing), ‘Stranger Things’ have happened, but right now it’s in the upside down with no sign of Winona Ryder’s Christmas lights. Not even a decoration for a declaration.
Kobe in a ‘Get Up’ interview for ESPN promoting his new ‘Wizenard’ book series said that this game was about more than stats and about feeling, energy. For decades they’ve said this game is like jazz. And just like that form of music, the notes are all there, but it’s what you do with improvising them that counts. And the only number and note from the Lake Show you need to know last night (apart from our energy high guy of the season McGee’s Kareem like 33 with the hook. A career best along with one in rebounds with 20 off the shot rim and glass) is that with his 8th turnover the King toppled to the ground as his crown slipped on a crucial possession. It’s kind of symbolic of how his Hollywood season has aged and played out. But one of the best players in the league, if not the best will be back on his throne in the hills and he’ll have plenty more Kawhi or Kyrie knights with him and these young princes.
But last night the one that hey exiled showed he could make a king bleed from the borough to the big city. D Loading just needed President Johnson to please wait. But with his own Magic cast last night, Russell showed he was fully charged now and ready to go like the Lakers never should have told him to. Because the only place in this postseason they’re going now is home.
Ice. In. His. Postseason.
Green & Gold. I.T. Was A Special Moment With Isaiah Thomas Back In Boston
Bill Russell, Larry Bird.
Antoine Walker, Paul Pierce.
Rajon Rondo. Kevin Garnett. Say what you will but Ray Allen too from three.
Kyrie Irving, Gordon Hayward, Al Horford, Jaylen Brown and Jason Tatum. IF they can get it together and turn what looks good on paper into what’s engraved wrote read in history books for the most storied franchise in NBA history.
Boston Celtic legends. The pride of New England.
From the last cigar to the golden era, Isaiah Thomas belongs there like his spelt differently namesake Detroit Piston being a Bad Boy to all that Magic and Bird in the Showtime of the 80’s.
And last night in the Garden perfect parquet court was held for the return of the fourth quarter king. Since Beantown, the microwave juggernaut, spark plug off the bench has bounced around the league like drinking too much coffee. From LeBron’s Cavalier land to the Los Angeles Lakers. Always providing that brief spark off the pine of what could be and what he had here, despite being Nygma green riddled by injury and franchise business disloyalty. But last night decked out in green and gold like Lianne La Havas, special edition Kobe’s for the night that even a Laker would love (forget that never wear green meme), as he took to the floor none of that mattered.
Sat back on the scorers table as cool as Celtic green cucumber in his warm-ups, I.T. took in a fitting tribute on the jumbotron for a team that knows too that they shouldn’t have traded him (he postgame not so quipped that if they never dealt him they could be dealing with another championship in those league leading rafters right now where surely his number 4 jersey held up by fans behind him will one day reside in pride of place). Beaming with that same Celtic pride through all the pain, you’ve never seen the slow grind smile like his since he was putting in work here in Massachusetts. The big screen video took us through his fourth quarter heroics, big shots and the moment he’s overcame it all to play in the wake of his sister’s tragic death and lead his team to epic, emotional glory.
And once the ovation stood up for a call game, more than a minute of time and moment of Paul Pierce like truth tribute, there wasn’t a butt on a bleacher or dry eye in the house.
Especially Isaiah, who couldn’t contain his pride and joy. Wiping away tears and wordlessly mouthing thank yous to everyone in attendance who clapped until their hands were red and cheered until hoarse. Celtic fans are real NBA fans who recognize that green collar hard work and know a Boston boy when they see one, no matter the uniform.
Thomas on limited minutes as the golden Nuggets make that postseason push to conference contention behind the state of those dynasty reigning Warriors, only sealed seven minutes in the actual game and he didn’t make a basket for more Boston bravado cheers. But that didn’t matter in this instance. Neither did the W his new team took away on the road with a 114-105 pruning in the Garden, as the Joker and all the Mile-High basketball cards clinched a playoff berth outside Colorado.
What mattered was this beautiful reunion between team and one of its favourite players. Sure this current Celtics outfitted for the banners and Hall looks so much better on dry erase like their storied LeBron Laker rivals with the King in throne tow. But look at the Magic of Hollywood right now. With a guy like Isaiah, Boston basketball was that little bit more inspired with the iconic little man. There was a little more hoop dream hope there too. And for both city and son it hasn’t been as sweet the same since.
Like I.T. says with the last word from last night.
“This feels like home”.
U Sports4 days ago
Dave Smart steps down as Carleton men’s head coach after 14 national titles
Boys2 weeks ago
Shak Pryce magical shot earns Pine Ridge Pumas back-to-back OFSAA gold
NCAA6 days ago
Complete List of Canadian’s NCAA 2019 March Madness
NCAA1 month ago
RJ Barrett first Canadian NCAA Triple-Double in 35 Years