Fashion Statement Be Damned I’m Now In The NBA
By tophatal …………..
Tonight , is the night that NCAA Collegiate Basketball talent gets to take center-stage with the 2012 NBA Draft . Team executives , coaches , team owners , convened press , NBA Tv and the players’ families will be in attendance for with the announcement of the number one overall pick . That name will undoubtedly be , AP Player of The Year and Kentucky Wildcats’ guard , Anthony Davis . Comparisons to Bill Russell and Hakeem Olajuwon have been made with regard to Davis’ play and his basketball IQ . To my mind , the young player , is simply by far the best talent in what appears to a rather average draft ! And though it is high praise indeed , to be mentioned in the same breath , as luminaries of the NBA . The one thing that is clear , Davis will have a long way to go before he can be legitimately be thought of and held in such high esteem .
Slide show for your perusal .
The New Orleans Hornets have the privilege of taking the number one pick , to be followed by the Charlotte Bobcats (2nd) , Washington Wizards (3rd ) , Cleveland Cavaliers (4th) , and the Sacramento Kings(5th) rounding out the top five . That being said , there will be a number of behind the scenes’ moves as several teams will be looking to move up in the draft pecking order . For Michael Jordan , team owner and Chief Executive (CEO) of the Charlotte Bobcats , he is in the unenviable position having to make a decision as to who the franchise should take as that second overall pick . Now we can all remember in 2001 , when in his capacity as the Head of Basketball Operations for the Washington Wizards he introduced the world to Kwame Brown as the number one pick in the NBA Draft of that year . For the Wizards , that pick and as evidenced by the years since , nothing was ever the same again as the franchise sank into an abyss of sheer ineptitude . And even now that organization has been barely competitive , and you simply have to peruse the divisional and conference standings of this past season to see that this has been borne out .
Jordan will be assisted in the decision by team COO Fred Whitfield , GM Rick Cho and newly installed head coach Mike Dunlap . Things will not bode well should the franchise make a pick that in no way assists a team that was one of the most offensively challenged franchises of the past season . The franchise needs a player that can be productive on both ends of the floor and it seems rather unfortunate with the asinine premise of the Draft Lottery , the Bobcats will not be availed with the privilege taking Anthony Davis as their pick. Now perusing the talent that will be available , the likes of Thomas Robinson , Michael Kidd-Gilchrist , Draymond Green , Andre Drummond , Bradley Beal and Damian Lillard , might seem appealing . However, there is such a drop off in the talent level within this draft , that once outside the prospective top five picks , it all comes down to a judicious approach by the general managers and the choices made. I have always felt that the franchise with the worst record in the NBA should have the privilege of taking the number one overall pick ! . It would appear otherwise , with regard to the mindset of NBA Commissioner David Stern and the members of the league hierarchy . And in truth by no means is that top pick an outright guarantee of success in the NBA .
God knows , shivers are sent up and down my spine when I think that in 2001 , Jordan passed over such talent as Tony Parker , Tyson Chandler and Pau Gasol , amongst others . As recently as 2007 , Greg Oden having been taken as the number one pick overall by the Portland Trailbazers , has seen his career simply fizzle out like a damp squib . There’s a great deal be said for the apparent level of the collegiate talent looking to make the jump from the ranks of College Basketball to the ranks of the NBA . I have long felt that the ” one and done athlete ” as precocious as their talents might appear to be , is not always mature enough to handle the glare and spotlight of the league , as well as the wealth and fame afforded those players ! . Granted , there have been “ exceptions to that rule” and if anything , that has been a rarity . However, you simply cannot hide the fact that when there is a bona-fide talent and star with your midst , it would be foolish to overlook them .
The NBA has clearly become a league that places more value in its high-profiled stars than it does in , any of its franchises . That has , and was clearly the case this season , in terms of the NBA Finals , and the series which pitted the Miami Heat against the Oklahoma City Thunder . The event was sold to the fans and public alike , as a duel between the game’s two best players , with LeBron James and Kevin Durant squaring off against each other , as if this were a world championship title fight between two even matched pugilists (boxers). Rarely, was the event stated as being match-up of two great teams and the talent that was said to be on display . Such has now become the state of and landscape of modern-day sports , that it comes down to consumerism , instantaneous gratification , rather than the substantive body of work . What might be even more asinine may well have been the premise that as entertaining as the series was said to be , the officiating was of the highest standard possible .
Apart from the interest that the NBA Draft creates on the domestic front , we should also remember the international contingent of players also seeking parlay their own prowess as they seek to join the most competitive professional league of its kind in with the world . It will be interesting to see if any of those players can aspire to be as successful as Tony Parker or Dirk Nowitzki , for that matter . The Frenchman and his German counterpart , have reached the summit of the game , with each having won an NBA title , and surprisingly enough both were named Finals MVPs in the series in which they were participants .
As the tentacles of the NBA has now crossed international borders spanning the globe . The upcoming Summer Olympics in London, England , will grant the NBA further exposure for the game and Team USA , with its litany of stars . Jerry Colangelo as the Chairman of USA Basketball , would like nothing better than to see both the Men’s and Women’s teams reign supreme , as each seeks to make a successful defense of their titles won in Beijing , China in 2008 . In London , with the game’s ardent following and a wealth of knowledge already attained with the local fans, it will be interesting to see how they react to the stars on display during that upcoming tournament .
As an expat Brit now residing in the US , the upcoming Olympics will be of great interest to me , as many of events scheduled and the state of the art purpose-built venues will be in areas I once frequented as a teenager and as an adult . With the billions that have been spent jointly by the British government and jointly with numerous public private enterprises , the anticipation being built up amongst the nation will be gargantuan . The economic impact to the country should run into several billion dollars with an anticipated 2 million tourists set be in attendance for the Olympic Games , beyond the fervent members of national population who will also seek to attend many of the events at these games .
One of the things that always comes to the fore when the NBA Draft comes around , happens to be, shall we say … ” the sartorial elegance of the attendees “ ? . Let’s put it this way , the fashion statements being made , might either be looked upon as being stylish or downright idiotic . In recent years who can forget Joakim Noah’s suit and what appeared to be a caricature of “ The Simpson’s “ character ‘Sideshow Bob’ ? Far be it for me to suggest but what the young Frenchman lacks in style , he more than makes up for , with his work ethic on a basketball court as a member of the Chicago Bulls . Tonight , it will be interesting to see who flunks the fashion code and who stands out for all of the right reasons .
Picture gallery .
As such are you an ardent fan of the NBA ? And two , do you believe that the Lottery System is the best way possible for the NBA Draft in its current format to be instituted ? Simply chime in on this and anything else you believe pertinent to the subject matter herein .
Picture and slide show details below .
(1) FILE – This Jan. 11, 2012 file photo shows Syracuse’s Dion Waiters (3) going up for a dunk in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against the Villanova, in Philadelphia. Waiters is a possible pick in the NBA Draft on June 28. AP Photo/Matt Slocum …
(2) In this Feb. 7, 2012 file photo, Florida’s Bradley Beal (23) shoots under pressure from Kentucky’s Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (14) during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Lexington, Ky. Beal is a possible pick in the NBA Draft on Jan. 28. AP Photo/James Crisp …..
(3) FILE – In this Feb. 29, 2012 file photo, North Carolina’s Harrison Barnes (40) shoots while Maryland’s Berend Weijs defends during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Chapel Hill, N.C. Barnes is a possible pick in the NBA Draft on Jan. 28. AP Photo/Gerry Broome …
(4) FILE – In this March 31, 2012 file photo, Kentucky forward Anthony Davis (23) reacts during the second half of an NCAA Final Four semifinal college basketball tournament game against Louisville, in New Orleans. Davis is a possible pick in the NBA Draft on Jan. 28. AP Photo/David J. Phillip …
(5) Charlotte Bobcats new head coach Mike Dunlap, right, talks with Bismack Biyombo , left, during an NBA basketball practice in Charlotte, N.C., Thursday, June 21, 2012. AP Photo/Chuck Burton …
(6) In this photo provided by CBS, Miami Heat’s LeBron James, left, embraces the Larry O’Brien trophy as television show host David Letterman watches, Tuesday, June 26, 2012, on the set of the “Late Show with David Letterman” in New York. James and the Miami Heat defeated the Oklahoma City Thunder to claim the 2012 NBA Championship. AP Photo/CBS, John Paul Filo ….. @ copyrighted material all rights reserved ….
(7) Joakim Noah , right , is seen here alongside David Stern during the 2007 NBA Draft . The player was taken ninth overall in the first round of the Draft . Whatever one might think of the player’s sense of dress , you simply cannot deny his ability on a basketball court . AP Photo / Martin Freeman ….
(8) Dwight Howard # 1 pick from the 2004 NBA Draft in an official photo . Howard the choice of the Orlando Magic is now at a crossroads in his career , unsure as whether or not his future lies with the only franchise that he’s played for professionally . With the abrupt upheaval within the front office and the firing of Stan Van Gundy , a new chapter is said to be underway for the Orlando Magic . Getty Images North America / Paul Mason …..
(9) Greg Oden , left , is seen here alongside Kevin Durant of the Seattle Supersonics . Oden the number one overall pick from the 2007 NBA Draft had a less than stellar career with the Portland Trailblazers , whereas , Durant has become an omnipresent scorer within the NBA as a three-time scoring champion . In this past season’s NBA Finals Durant was the leading scorer for the renamed Sonics , now known as the Oklahoma City Thunder , who lost the series 4-1 to the Miami Heat . Courtesy of NBAE / Getty Images / Scott Harrison …..
(10) ” I’m sorry but did you say your Mama helped you get dressed ” ? Amar`e Stoudemire is seen here with NBA Commissioner David Stern on NBA Draft Day … 2002 . The player was taken ninth overall by the Phoenix Suns in the first round of the Draft . No longer with the Suns , the center/power forward now makes his career with the New York Knicks and was recently fined $50k ($50,000) by the league hierarchy for anti-homophobic slurs directed at an NBA fan . The player has since publicly apologized to the fan , to the NBA and the Knicks’ organization for his actions .
Cam’ron ………… “Down ” ………… feat’g Kanye West & … Syleena Johnson