That Was Going To Be My Pick ….. Or Not ….

That Was Going To Be My Pick ….. Or Not ….

tophatal ………. 06/01/2012 …… 00.35 AM (EST)

Could things have gotten any worse for the Charlotte Bobcats’ (7-59) franchise in the aftermath of last night’s NBA Draft Lottery ? . Prior to the Eastern Conference Finals game two between the Boston Celtics and the Miami Heat . The NBA had its little precursor which would give us the order for the top five picks for the teams with the worst records from last season. Though the Bobcats had that ignominy and distinction with the worst record percentage wise (.106) in NBA history . The privilege of having the number one overall pick , that honor will belong to the New Orleans Hornets (21-45) . The consensus will be that the Kentucky Wildcats’ …… Anthony Davis will be the number one overall pick in the upcoming 2012 NBA Draft .


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The New Orleans Hornets were formerly league owned but with the recent sale of the Hornets to Louisiana businessman and New Orleans Saints’ owner Tom Benson . It has to be said that this could either be viewed as “Kismet” or the league hierarchy’s way of looking after one of the poorer NBA franchises economically . It goes without saying that more likely than not the Hornets will indeed not choose to shy away from taking Davis . The soon to be former Wildcats’ guard was one of the primary reasons why John Calipari was able to secure his first NCAA title . And in all likelihood this Wildcats’ team could see as many see as many as five players from this past season’s championship roster being taken in the first round of this NBA Draft.

For Bobcats’ owner Michael Jordan , GM Rod Higgins and team President & Head of Basketball Operations Fred Whitfield the very fact that the chance of now not being able to obtain Anthony Davis may well have further darken the horizons for the franchise to lift itself out of the doldrums . With the mutual departure of Paul Silas , the Bobcats also finds itself without a head coach . And having interviewed Jerry Sloan for the still vacant position , it remains to be seen whether or not the front office will make the former Utah Jazz head coach the successor to Silas.

Granted , there will be a number of players that Jordan and his executive staff may well deem suitable to complement the talents of Kemba Walker and the rest of this now infamous Charlotte Bobcats’ roster . One of the most anemic defensive teams of the past season as well as one that was completely lacking in terms of their offensive prowess . In reality the flaws for the Charlotte Bobcats were ongoing , with their being no veteran leadership from seasoned players viewed as the tutors whom Walker could actually learn from , thereby assuming the responsibility as the face of the franchise .

Clearly , at a crossroads , as to where he desires his franchise to be Michael Jordan can’t be entirely happy in seeing a number of his peers have some semblance of as a general manager within the NBA . GM Danny Ainge has presided over the Boston Celtics winning their most recent NBA title in 2008 as well as being a participant in the postseason 2010 and 2011 . Larry Bird as the general manager of the Indiana Pacers , he has groomed a talented group of players with head coach Frank Vogel and his coaching staff leading the charge in making this group a positive force during the regular season , and making their presence felt this postseason .

There’s no denying that Michael Jordan was more than a ” force of nature “ as a player during his illustrious NBA career . But it has been the pratfalls as NBA front office executive for which he has now become more notoriously known . While with the Washington Wizards serving in a similar capacity with the organization , he drafted then unknown high school player Kwame Brown as the number one overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft . The player never fulfilled those expectations while players such as Tony Parker and Tyson Chandler taken lower in the draft order have established themselves as bona-fide stars within the NBA . Jordan has never been able to live down that misstep and the repeated mistakes since he assumed control of the Charlotte Bobcats having bought the franchise from Robert L Johnson the media mogul and founder of BET . Johnson would go on to sell the ($2.3 billion) cable broadcast outlet and programmer to Viacom Inc , parent company of CBS .

As much as it pains me to say this but if Michal Jordan is allowed to plow the franchise further into the depths of mediocrity, it has to be incumbent upon the NBA hierarchy to step in . NBA Commissioner David Stern must be embarrassed to see the ship upon which upon which he pinned sail to ______ now suffering such an indignity . God , the Clippers for years had to put up the repeated failings of Donald Sterling and former GM Elgin Baylor , and even now , the franchise though deemed to be on the ascent , they quickly fell back to earth having been soundly beaten (4-0) in the second round of the Western Conference playoffs . The fallacy has been in the decided reports as to the makeup of this NBA postseason with their being a number of small market teams , it has created the perception of parity within the NBA this season . In reality , however, what it all boils down to is the prudent acquisition of free agents , the drafting of well-rounded players and not paying …. exorbitant player salaries in chasing after success . Consider the payrolls for teams such as the Miami Heat , Los Angeles Lakers and Dallas Mavericks , each of whom made the postseason but had varying degrees of success .

Recently I was perusing the quarterbacks drafted over the last 15 years in the NFL . It speaks volumes that in 2011 we had one of the most explosive seasons in recent memory concerning the productivity players at the position who may well be judged to be amongst the best-of-the-best this past season . Obviously , there have been players who simply under-achieved while others exceeded expectations. Jay Cutler , an accomplished player but somehow much like his conference counterpart Tony Romo have simply become an enigma wrapped up in a conundrum .

The NFL Draft (2006) saw Jay Cutler being drafted in the first round but also part of this parade just happened to be Matt Leinart , Vince Young , Kellen Clemens , Bruce Gradkowski , Charlie Whitehurst , D J Shockley and Tavaris Jackson . To say suggest that this was barrel filled with some rotten apples would indeed be an understatement . That being said simply look at the regular and postseason results from that year and the quarterback statistics to understand why it’s not always best to throw a rookie overboard without a life-jacket . Peyton Manning may well have had some semblance of success in 1998 , his rookie season , and as we can all attest Cam Newton simply shredded the record books in 2011 on his way to an outstanding season with the Carolina Panthers . Both players as we know were number one picks in the NFL Draft.

Manning , having been let go by the Indianapolis Colts as Jim Irsay and GM Ryan Grigson seeks to rebuild around Andrew Luck and the draft picks made by the franchise . Luck and Robert Griffin III were the top two picks taken in 2012 , and their respective teams are no doubt hoping to rebound from each having a disappointing season in 2011 .

Peyton Manning looks to add to his already his illustrious career and the fact that he now makes his home with the Denver Broncos . John Elway the Head of Football Operations for the franchise saw fit to acquire Manning , albeit that Tim Tebow led the Broncos into the postseason where the team would ultimately fall (45-10) to the New England Patriots . The AFC West could no doubt be very competitive this season but in reality I believe it will be one of hits and misses ! More misses , than hits , if truth be known ! It’s not as if with the addition of Manning to the division , we will actually see some outstanding play from the teams in question . Simply look at the divisional standing last season for the teams in question and then tell me where you believe there will be a vast improvement ? No one can be sure that Peyton Manning will actually be the player who has set so many records over the course of his career , especially in light of his recent injury issues . But it was a risk that John Elway and team owner Pat Bowlen was worth taking , given the financial commitment made to Manning . That being said , it’s now do or die for the Denver Broncos .

This season a great deal will be asked of Jay Cutler and Tony Romo , as it my belief ” that both are on the clock” ! God knows, Lovie Smith and Jason Garrett are also under a great deal of pressure to produce and succeed as the respective coaches of the Dallas Cowboys and Chicago Bears . The quarterbacks in question have yet to win a meaningful game over the course of their respective careers . Jerry Jones may well carved out that edifice that can house 100,000 rabid fans with a Jumbotron Hi-Def screen as the center-piece and one of a slew of ostentatious attractions to lure the fans to this palatial arena in Arlington , Texas,. If this team doesn’t produce this season within the NFC East , especially in light of the dominance of the New York Giants in recent seasons , having twice won the Superbowl in the past five years . Eli Manning is slowly staking his claim that he’s well on his way to becoming a future Hall of Famer , as he seeks to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio,.

Jerry Jones has seen the valuation of his franchise rise exponentially , making it one of the most valuable NFL teams and amongst the most profitable professional sports franchises in the world . So much has been made about the talent we see coming from the collegiate ranks , some are prepared , whereas, others are most definitely not . The coaches and their coaching staffs are placed under microscope to get the players prepared as they are being continually second-guessed not just by the fans but also the on-air television analysts. And perhaps no one this season will be place under that type of public scrutiny than Rex Ryan of the New York Jets . The three-ringed circus has already began with questions being raised about how Tim Tebow will be used by the organization and whether or not the back-up can actually beat out the incumbent starting quarterback , Mark Sanchez , for the starting role on the team . The beat writers and tv media within the greater New York , New Jersey area will spend the entire off-season speculating on this and a great deal more concerning the franchise . Let’s just say , Tebow may well be having fun, the pressure cooker that is the New York City market can either have a devastating effect or be a motivating factor behind a player’s rise or fall within that particular market-place . The jury is still out on Sanchez , in spite of the first three years of his NFL career . Two AFC championship appearances on face value alone should be deemed acceptable to most but we’re talking about New York , where the last remnants of success for the Jets’ franchise was simply when “Broadway” Joe Namath made his bold prediction and then backed it up with a victory for the team. Both Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow have a great deal to live up to and I am sure that the Jets’ fans will make them aware of that over the course of the coming season , if not before !



Picture gallery for your perusal .

What thoughts if any do you have concerning the points raised within the piece ? By all means do take time to leave a comment as you see fit on this and anything else you believe to be pertinent with regard to the subject matter .


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Picture and slide show details below .

(1) NEW YORK, NY – MAY 30: Head Coach Monty Williams of the New Orleans Hornets holds up the winning card during the 2012 NBA Draft Lottery on May 30, 2012 at ABC News “Good Morning America” Times Square Studios in New York City. Copyright 2012 NBAE Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images ….

(2) Head Coach Monty Williams and Tom Benson of the New Orleans Hornets reacts during the 2012 NBA Draft Lottery on May 30, 2012 at ABC News “Good Morning America” Times Square Studios in New York City. Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images …

(3) FILE – In this March 9, 2012, file photo , Charlotte Bobcats owner Michael Jordan gestures at the referees during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the New Jersey Nets in Charlotte, N.C. The Bobcats, after the worst season in NBA history, fell to the No. 2 pick in the draft lottery , Wednesday, May 30, in New York. AP Photo/Bob Leverone …..

(4) Kwame Brown is seen here alongside NBA Commissioner David Stern on draft day 2001 . The player was taken #1 overall in the NBA Draft of that year ahead of the likes of Tony Parker , Shane Battier , Pau Gasol , Joe Johnson and Richard Jefferson . It is said to be one of the greatest “draft blunders” in NBA history when Brown was taken straight out high school by the Washington Wizards, where Michael Jordan was the de-facto general manager and Head of Basketball Operations for the team’s owner Abe Pollin . AFP/Reuters/ Chris Shaw …

(5) ” A picture paints 1,000 words ” . Kwame Brown is seen here along with Michael Jordan , as he’s formally introduced to the convened press as the Washington Wizards’ #1 pick overall in the 2001 NBA Draft. Brown’s career with the franchise was “littered with highs and lows” . Truthfully , the “highs” weren’t that memorable and the lows were pitiful . AP Photo / David Price ….

(6) From left to right , Vince Young , Brody Croyle and Matt Leinart , quarterbacks taken in 2006 NFL Draft . Each has had a less than stellar career in the NFL , although they were highly touted as being very talented at the collegiate level. AP Photo / Matthew Khan …….

(7) Lovie Smith of the Chicago Bears talks with Jay Cutler (6) during the game against the Atlanta Falcons at Soldier Field on September 11, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. Getty Images /Scott Boehm …

(8) Quarterback Tony Romo (9) of the Dallas Cowboys stands on the sidelines with head coach Jason Garrett as the Dallas Cowboys take on the Philadelphia Eagles at Cowboys Stadium on December 24, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. Romo hurt his right hand in the first quarter and sat out the rest of the game. Getty Images / Matt Hough ….

(9) New York Jets quarterbacks Mark Sanchez, right, and Tim Tebow, left, listen to quarterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh , center, during NFL football practice, Thursday, May 31, 2012, in Florham Park, N.J. AP Photo/Julio Cortez …..

(10) Denver Broncos head coach John Fox , right, bumps fists with quarterback Peyton Manning during NFL football practice at the team’s training facility in Englewood, Colo., on Wednesday, May 30, 2012. From left are Caleb Hanie , Manning, Adam Weber and Eric Decker . AP Photo/Ed Andrieski ….



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