Friday, May 12, 2006

Meet Carl Cook, homeless LA Clipper floor seat season ticket holder.

He makes about 10 grand a year detailing cars & other odd jobs, spending about a third of that on his seats at Staples. He rides his bike there and back to every game (Marina Del Rey to Downtown).

A few years back, he got hit-and-run by a car while on the bike and put into a semi-coma for a week. A month later, he was back on the bike going to games again.

When the clips moved to Staples from the LA Sports Arena, and ticket prices went up, he sold his sailboat for $6,400 to help make up the difference; the guy he sold it to still lets him sleep on it most nights.

Fascinating, fascinating story. I haven't been this jealous of a guy that spends most of his nights on a boat since Crockett and his alligator were busting coke-lords.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

I was sad to hear from a buddy of mine in LA that my theory about everyone in LA being behind the Clippers now, because of lack of confusion of loyalties, is apparently completely untrue. According to him, the locals are more often bashing the clippers and saying they’ll lose, the rationale being that if the lakes couldn’t do it, how could lil brother? If they even consider the clips the lil brother. More like the rat that comes out of the hole in the wall and steals the moldy cheese.

Well good, I say, we don’t need your non bandwagonning asses anyway. Eff all yall. And I better not hear any of you Angelinos talking trash now celebrating when the clips are playing hard in the next round, which you KNOW’s gonna happen, the turnaround in fan appreciation, not the clips going into the next round, which I BELIEVE in my mind and heart will happen, but I KNOW those piles in LA, they’ll all be “oh, I knew the clippers could do it, isn’t it nice to see them doing so well?” but this is only after they get past the suns.

Bah. I’m rambling and getting more irritated and irrational as I type this. Plus no one reads this crap anyway.

In any event, as you know, or don’t, the clips beat the living SHIT outta the suns in game 2 last night, IN phoenix. Next two at staples, and good, all you laker fans that can’t extend the postseason olive branch of support for the other LA team, as I do every goddamm year when the clips are in the dust, well, fuck you. So used to and spoiled by success you can’t be a sporto. That ain’t LA style, but maybe it is. I’m glad I’m in Honolulu so I don’t have to witness this horse manure.

But then again I’d love it, I’d be at the games, I’d be going nutty block, and shoving that clipper hat in laker fan faces? Priceless. Let me clarify, I got no inherent prollem with lake fans, as I've said here and in the past, when the clips usually make their early exit from the race, I shift over to rooting for the lakeshow, cuz hey, I’m LA born and bred, and the clips are my team, but I’ll support any LA institution in the post season if my number one squad is out of the running. Same with the angels. I would NEVER root for the angels over the dodgers, just like I would NEVER root for the lakers over the clippers, but I can and do still push my good vibes and enthusiasm over to what I consider the “other” LA teams when it’s not putting me in a position of being disloyal.

So it pisses me off that laker fans are such spoiled bitches that they couldn’t do the same.

And yes I’ve put way too much thought & energy into this. Salud.

True Hoop

GREAT column by the LA Times’ TJ Simers on the ever-elusive and suddenly accessible pocketed Donald Sterling.

His column the week before about Kobe quitting halfway thru game 7 and pouting like a little bitch is pretty good, too.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Howdy. Well, it’s gonna be lunchtime soon. A special deployment of the 83rd brigade’s backup contingent is at Rainbow Express picking up the goods. I always get the boneless chicken with gravy all over, but I decided to hunt the internet and see if I could find a menu and thereby discovered this fist clenching, heart wrenching culinary experience reenactment (and accompanying picture and peanut gallery squawking) at this fine local food based web log, and it successfully tempted me into testing the waters with the bbq beef sandwich, fries, and chili rice bowl. I am also aware that Rainbow Express, although the same company and same menu, is not the same exact physical establishment as Rainbow Drive-Inn on Kapahulu, and I will be taking this into account when I present the academy with my final recommendations and analysis. I will let you know how it all works out, or, possibly, and, more likely, not (the letting you know part, not it working out). I know, it was a rash and ruthless decision, this sudden change in the armament if not the weaponry involved of what will be plunging at the speed of, if not sound, molassess, into my unwitting and not necessarily innocent stomach. Bear in mind and please let my ancestors know, in case this does not go as planned, that the decision was made in the heat of the moment. I caught the perpetrators in time as they stood at the window ready to give the order, I mean, if a gun had been to my head and a bloodthirsty drooling kgb agent, unaware of either glasnost or (insert other Russian word meaning USSR takes a gigantic shit here) had occurred, intent on murderously ventilating my cranium, the tension could have only been a Shetland pony’s hair width greater. And that is truly saying something with a depth and sincerity you probably haven’t heard since the 4th grade and that old lady told you about how that guy and girl wanted to give each other perfect gifts and she cut all her hair off & he bought her like a really nice brush or some shit like that.

fascinating IM conversation between Henry Abbott and "Max," his secret liaison to all things NBA and New York hoops and inner workings of the underground seams of the league, the world, and nuclear disarmament. Read the whole thing, but one bit stood out which seemed to veracify (word police?) some of the things I’ve been saying about the clipper who I’ve taken to calling “the kid,” (by myself, in my basement, away from potential ridicule, in between crying bouts, and yes I’m making this scenario up) anyway, the quote, via "Max":

"Speaking of which, Even though they LOST....Shaun Livingston is gonna be a STAR in this league… His vision… ball handling… length… if he can ever Borrow Cassell's mid range jump shot…"

and what’s really scary? For us that have been watching the clips religiously all season and last year and the year before that and the decade before that, (and beyond), with psychotically frightening visions of Rick Brunson and Pooh Richardson dancing in our heads, Shaun has been a vision, but staying on topic, his jumper has improved A LOT. Early in the season and during his intermittent play last year, you did not see him nailing nearly as often those nice crisp 12 to 15 footers he’s now started to hit semi-regularly. And I think it’s coming, and when it does, hooo doggies, watch out, the clips are gonna be a force beyond what they already are.

I’m telling you, Jerry, I’m busting!

Non-sports crap later today, promise. And when I say "promise," I mean the margarine, not when you tell someone something and then actually follow through on it.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

I told myself I was gonna do it like this, so I’m gonna. I’m not gonna read nothing on the clips loss to the suns last nite until I write down a few of my own thoughts, if I have any. And, wait, searching, pulling data, processing caffeine, intake confirmed, yes, I do have a few, gimme a minute. Yes, don’t read the below until you’ve waited 60 seconds, just to keep in chronological sync. Yes. Yes. Ok, now we’re ready. Yes, you waited 60 seconds to read shit that you’ll prolly rehash again reading the espn equivalent of rush Limbaugh, apologies in advance.

Ok, point 1. Elton was a beast, and he’ll continue to be a beast, because the suns have no answer for him. he may not have the same kind of game he had last nite, which was, practically perfect, but he will continue to dominate.

Kaman will step up & play a little better, not that he floundered per se, he displayed some good post moves and established things nicely, but diaw did his slicing & chris has gotta be ready for that.

Clipperblog made an excellent point a day or two ago. He talked about moving around furniture. Meaning that the suns break and pick and roll and all the things they do so well, which is for the most part fueled by nash, is predicated on the pieces being in the right places, aka the furniture, and there’s a necessity to move that furniture around. The clips need to clog passing lanes and force the suns to be out of position. They didn’t get said mission accomplished last nite. In fact, it almost seemed like, rather than moving the suns’ furniture around, that the clips rather came in the night before and readjusted the furniture, checked the schematics and shifted barka lounges and love seats a half a foot here, a few inches there, just to get all the bumpers and rails, if we’re playing a game of metaphorical pinball, just in their perfect positions.

Anyway, that was the story. the clips appeared to be playing decent defense, and they probably were, but they just could not stop the suns, and they’re gonna have to be way more disruptive and slow the pace way down to have any kind of a chance in this series.

That being said, I think it’s an accomplishable goal, the clips will just have to bear down and concentrate. The bummer thing is that last nite was such a missed opportunity. The clips shot lights out, the suns did as well, except phoenix was nailing 3’s all night long, instead of 2’s. but phoenix can’t keep that pace up, they just can’t. theoretically.

Clips’ll take game 2. justice will reverberate thru the negasphere.

More later on, possibly, links to anything interesting I find in re: the game as well as some non sports-crap if I’m in the mood. Yup, for that one person (Hi Bartholomew) reading this. Bart? Mew? Sigh, he left.

Yah, I’m still here, lots of positives from the game. I feel good. The clips can and will still roll. Life is not a box of exlax. I’m good enuff, etc. milk is good for your bones. Quinton ross was hitting his jumper. I am doing the blah blah. No one is reading this. You are getting very sleepy. Congrats and aloha.

Was that goddamm gorilla actually riding a motorcycle on the court during timeouts? What’s the statute of limitations on skid marks and jock itch? Did I take this job for a quick buck? Seriously, people are cool with that? I’m lost, not knowing where I’m going, this glob is on a death bed, get the catheter and a platinum plated thermometer, administer at the nearest convenient orifice and gimme the bad news strait, doc, I can take it. Colonel Angus got me through this war and he’ll get me out. That doesn’t necessarily mean nothing or zero my hero in other words. And yes I’m purposefully blabbing my way into a corner. If you’re on a boat, lean to starboard. Starbuck was very brave. And he didn’t have coffee on his side. I don’t feel like editing this, sorry and alert the forces of justice if there’s an issue necessitating quantification. Oh yeah, and fuck that gorilla and the bike he rode in on.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Clippers versus Suns, matchup analysis

Small forward: Quinton ross against James Jones. I have to give the edge to Ross. Jones a decent shooter and can run, but ross a lockdown defender who’s got a nice (and improving) jumper as well. Not even sure they’d put ross on jones here, I’m honestly a bit baffled, the matchups with phoenix are so weird. Ross could guard bell, but I’d love to see him guard marion, but then who would brand guard? Will be interesting. Anyway, advantage clips.

Power forward: Elton Brand vs. Shawn Marion. Wow. This is a battle of the titans. Marion can run run run & never runs out of gas. Elton can run too but I think Marion is definitely faster. Brand is much better in the post. They both have good jump shots, marion obviously has more range and could pull Elton out of the paint. When it comes to who gives their team more here, though, I gotta go with EB, and I’m not just being a homer. Brand was borderline MVP candidate in my mind; Marion great player, but if I had to pick one for my squad, I’d take brand all day every day.

Center: Chris Kaman vs. Boris Diaw. Boris has been huge. This is a very similar argument to everything at the 4 spot. Neither player is as good as the 4’s either. They’re such different types of players, but I think I’d have to give the edge to phoenix here. Diaw is so fast, such a slicer, I think Kaman will give him a nice battle, and if he’s patient and pounds down low and doesn’t get frustrated if/when diaw gets transition baskets, he’ll be OK and maybe even dominate. Kaman is 10 times the player kwame brown was, he will not be missing all those layups. Shit, tough call. I’ll give, reluctantly, phoenix the edge here, not sure why, diaw a rookie, but Kaman is a bit green too, though he has been quite impressive all season.

2 guard: mobley vs. raja. Mobley. Raja decent defender and ok shooter, but mobley’s D has blossomed (huh?) and I think he’s a better shooter than raja, plus this is one spot where the clippers run the floor better. Cuttino has a knack for being at the right place at the right time. Advantage clippers.

Point: Sam I am vs. the mvp Steve Nash. Well, he’s the MVP, so you gotta give the advantage to Nash, right? I guess so, but Sam is a gamer, always has been, and he will be huge, and steve nash plays no defense. Just as fascinating is the 2nd wave, here, with Livingston and barbosa coming off the benches for the clips & suns respectively. Livingston a monster playmaker, kinda a baby nash, and barbosa just a crazy fast instant offense.

Bench: Livingston, vladdie, maggette for the clips, barbosa, tim Thomas, eddie house (very sparingly, so far) for the suns. Huge advantage clips. Thomas has been a great postseason story, and I already mentioned barbosa, but c’mon, a force like maggette coming off the bench? And vladdie bombing threes? And the way young mr. Livingston changes a game when he steps on the court? Clips. Clips. Clips.

Coaching: d’antoni (suns), dunleavy (clips). Both great coaches. Both know the strengths & weaknesses inside out of their teams. I’ll call this one a draw.

Clips in 7. heartbreak in the desert. LA finally makes good. Stay in phoenix and get drunk and rested up for the trip to dallas or san Antonio, ok cancel the drunk part, get crunk? I dunno, but I feel good about it. Win or lose, and I think the clips can pull it out, this’ll be a great series, balls to the walls, YOUR la clippers are gonna get the job done and you will not see pouting dogshit a la el otro equipe de los angeles, no mein, this is the real. Gracias.

update: clipperblog has got all the clipper suns preview prognostication & analysis you could possibly require. plus free existential popcorn for the first 72 thru the door, theoretically.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Ey yo. Well, what can you say? Lakers got the asshanders award, numero uno, there was no one today that got their asses beat harder unless mike Tyson went back in time and reverberated some shit against lennox lewis. Kobe might as well have tattooed his face and went and hit a punching bag in maui for 2 months before this game, I mean, wtf? So much for any talk of this kid being the next Jordan, please, you can leave that shit at the door, I know, and I will accept, what he was trying to do, he was trying to get his teammates involved, and I know that cake eat it too argument about people wanna be bitching about kobe taking too many shots and then taking too few shots, but, this game, this was some inexplicable shit, craig sager hit the mofoing nail on the head, er, I’m sorry Kevin nealon, no, that ain’t it either, dunno, whoever was sitting next to doug Collins’ irrepressibly bleached headed ass. But kobe, I mean, ok, you makin a point, or, you trying to do what you gotta do to get your teammates involved, but 3 shots? Or whatever it was? 1 point in the 2nd half? You gotta do more than that, kid, I’m sorry, I don’t care how crappy kwame brown was playing, and I know he was playin like shit, and so was the rest of your sorry ass team, but you GOTTA go out gunnin in a situation like that. You gotta.

And honestly, I really don’t give a fuck. I’d thought it out prior to the game and I figger it’s a wash for the clippers, whoever won this game. And I’ll explain it here. Yup, right in this spot. You don’t have to wait a couple days, ain’t no cliffhanger shit up in this bitch, well, sometimes, ya know, I might premeditate on this shit, but no, I will explain my rationale of why the clips are just as good off facing the phoenix suns, who are most definitely a better team than the los angeles lakers, right after this short commercial break, during which certain biological needs must and will be attended to. Salud.

Ok, back. Yes. The reason of which the clips are still in good shape. Now, even thought they lost home court advantage, they gained home court advantage. Hear me out. If the “hallway” series had come to fruition, I am going to tell you something, the so called home court for the clips? You might as well have thrown it out the window with the bathwater and vanilla ice’s headband. Do you understand how many laker fans are at every clippers lakers game that is a supposed “home” match for the clips? Do you think that any of these supposed “home” games for your (er, mine) los angeles clippers, formerly known as the san diego clippers, formerly known as the buffalo braves, would have been home games in any realistic sense of the word? No, they would not have. BUT, now you have taken this bastardization and quadrupled it to the other extreme. All those laker fans that would have gone to these clipper “home” games against the lakers and rooted for the purple & gold? Now they will vehemently root against the evil empire that is the phoenix suns, and push hard for LA’s team of the moment, and the team of my lifetime and inner nebulous demon (word of the week, natch), yes, the LA clippers.

I’m telling you, the clips would have been getting both booed and hurra’d on their own court both during their home games and the aways in a clips lakes series, yes, booed more on the lakes floor and hurra’d a bit more on the clips floor, but still, they would not have had the whole building behind them, which is huge, and which I think more than makes up for the fact that they have to get on a plane and go to the desert. The clippers are a fine road team, built for the playoffs, their skill down low is a hundred times that of the lakers, they will not get conned into running when it doesn’t suit their fancy against the suns, they can beat them up in the post, they can take them in the half court, they can run when necessary, they have shaun Livingston off the bench, they have sam cassell, the wiliest of the wiliest, I’m telling you, I feel good about this.

The whole city of LA is behind the clippers in a way that they have never been and may never be again. People that never even paid them any mind are 1) no longer distracted by their loyalty to the lakers, and 2) pushed ON by their loyalty to the lakers in their desire to see justice done and see this suns team that kobe et al had on the ropes brought low before the emperor so they can raise in the air their thumbs down and see nash and marion and barbosa and all these torturers of the los angeles Hollywood bandwagon put in their proper place in the negasphere.