Where Are They Now, 2010; Part 12
January 17th, 2010

– Brian Butch After going undrafted despite working out for basically every NBA team at some point (and going to summer league with the Memphis Grizzlies, where he barely played), Butch split his first professional season between Spain, China and Germany. He spent most of it in Germany, averaging 10.6 points and 5.5 rebounds per game for Noerdlingen, and this summer he signed in Greece for Ilysiakos. In three games, Butch put up 42 points and 16 rebounds in only 49 minutes, with 10 three-pointers, and led the team in points and rebounds despite not playing half the game. But Ilysiakos released him anyway for reasons I’m unable to Google, and Butch has returned to America and joined the D-League. For the Bakersfield Jam – a team who announced they were folding after last season yet who seem to have found a stay of execution from somewhere – Butch averages 17.1 points, 8.5 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.1 blocks in 31 minutes per game. He’d play more if it wasn’t for the four fouls per game. Here is Brian Butch scantily clad in scanty cladding. – Geno Carlisle Despite being far older than the age of player that the league was really designed for, ex-NBA player Carlisle spent last year in the D-League playing for the Anaheim Arsenal. He played only a month for the team, averaging 8.9 ppg in 18 games, before being waived last January due to injury, and has been unsigned ever since. It’s not entirely unprecedented for Carlisle to be out of the game for a year, as he did the same between early 2007 and early 2008 as well. But since he turns 34 this year and was last heard of being waived due to injury, it doesn’t bode well.   – Alejandro Carmona Carmona […]

Posted by at 7:21 AM

2008 NBA Finals Talk
June 10th, 2008

By unpopular demand, I won’t talk about baseball. Instead, I’ll talk about basketball. I shall retread the observations of the hundreds of other writers who are covering the subject, while adding no unique spin. It’s how we roll around here. 1) There’s no reason why Lamar Odom shouldn’t be able to defend Kevin Garnett better than he does. None whatsoever. He has the length to bother his jump shots as well as anyone can bother them, the athleticism to prevent any easy drives to the basket, and the reasonable man-to-man post defence to cope with the rare times that Garnett plays back to the basket. But he doesn’t do it that well. And not only does he struggle at it, but he doesn’t do it much at all, as Pau Gasol seems to end up with the assignment a lot of the time. This doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. Also, this is somewhere where Andrew Bynum would come in handy. 2) Something that also doesn’t make a lot of sense is Vlad Rad starting and playing as much as he is. I understand the Lakers’ need for shooting and spacing. I do. But Radmanovic is bad in all other aspects of the game. (His rebounding numbers in this series have been quite good, but try and think of a single Radmanovic rebound. You can’t – they were all gimmies that his replacement could have gotten, too.) And when you’re matched up against a team that starts Ray Allen, Paul Pierce and Garnett at the 2-3-4 spots, you’re left with the unattractive prospect of having Radmanovic guarding one of those three, particularly when Kobe Bryant spends so much time on Rajon Rondo. And Radmanovic just can’t do that. Leave him in as a token starter if you must, but […]

Posted by at 5:04 AM

Dreaming about Mark Madsen
March 16th, 2008

Do you ever stop and think about that time that Mark Madsen shot seven three-pointers in an overtime game, when Minnesota and Memphis had the most blatant tank-off that history has ever seen? No, nor did I. That is, not until this morning, when I woke up thinking about it. It’s not an entirely normal thing to wake up thinking about, even for the most hardcore Madsen fans amongst us. (For we are all Mark Madsen fans, obviously.) But some part of this must have ruffled my feathers, stoned my crows and enraged my loins, because this was all that i could think about for about three minutes after waking up. It is now a permanent blot on the NBA landscape. The situation Minnesota found themselves in – not good enough to make the playoffs, not bad enough to bottom out without trying to – left them deliberately trying to lose games. It needn’t have done, but General Manager Kevin McHale had already trded away Minnesota’s first rounder that season, as it was owed to the L.A. Clippers along with Sam Cassell in exchange for Lionel Chalmers and┬áMarko Jaric. The pick, however, had top ten protection, and so in order to be able to keep it, Minnesota had to lose with a bit more regularity and finesse than they were doing up until that point. They did this with aplomb, telling Kevin Garnett to stop playing (or so we thought), playing their better players for merely token minutes, and letting their lesser players do whatever the hell they wanted, in what then-head coach Dwane Casey called “letting them have some fun” (to be read as “playing really badly so that we lose”.) The fact that they met an equally-tanking Memphis team, who were tanking for a different reason, was an […]

Posted by at 3:43 PM