Fighting the Doldrums [originally posted 2/10/14 on sportsblog.com]

Winter has hit us pretty hard here in Lawrence. The snow we had shut things down for a few days. By Friday I was sitting at my desk watching the Pebble Beach Pro-Am just to have some sort of escape from out beautifully dreary weather. I think I’m going to start watching the golf channel whenever I need to take a nap. I find it oddly soothing. Something else I learned from watching golf this weekend, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning are pretty decent golfers. For all the talk about how ‘humble’ both players exhibit on the football field, their real life swag as rich white men couldn’t be more noticeable in their relaxed golfing attire of pullover sleeves and brown corduroys pants. forget what the scoreboard has read in past Super Bowls, both men are winners at life.

Anyway, I managed to watch a little basketball this weekend, but not nearly as much as I wanted. Living with 30 plus people during a snowstorm doesn’t lend to great bandwidth. It’s also embarrassing to admit that I fell asleep midway through the KU-WVU game on Saturday. Either I’m getting old and need more sleep, or I’m just bored with the way conference play has turned out. Either way I snored my way through the 2nd half. Impressive eh? I looked at the box scores and things seemed rather ho hum. Maybe the “little brothers” (who by the way put it on the same UT horns who thumped the Jayhawks last week)will provide some drama in the little apple tonight. Here are some random notes from the last week of Snowpocalypse:

From what little I did see of the game, Juwan Staten and Erron Harris make up a pretty good backcourt. I heard a couple of analysts say possibly best backcourt in the conference. I looked in the box score and saw they accounted for 39 of the 69 Mountaineer’s points. They definitely have my attention. The next time they face a good team, I’ll probably tune in and check out their game.

Melvin Ejim- WTF! 48 points 18 rebounds on 20-24 shots. Unreal. I know its just TCU, but the horny toads are still a D-1 school. He only missed four shots as well. Pretty dang efficient if you ask me. I don’t know what this means as far as his future in the NBA, but it certainly makes a person pay closer attention to what is going up in Ames.

I got to watch a little NBA action this week. Golden State vs. Chicago wasn’t as good of a game as I was hoping, but I did enjoy it. Besides reminding me about how good of a passer Joakim Noah is (his passes to Taj Gibson out of the High-Low sets not a surprise if you remember his playing days with Horford), this week gave us this tweet.
When his playing days are over, and he can keep it one hundred without fear of repercussions from the league, Noah is going to make a great interview. I’m officially a fan.

Illard!!!

Pacers vs. Trailblazers was everything you could ask for in a game. It was back and forth, a couple of game changing shots in the last minute, and overtime. There was an ILLard outburst, with a 38, 3, and 11 line for the box scores (in OT it felt like he was the only one with anything leftin the tank for Portland) and a humongous game by George Hill (37 pts, 9 boards, 8 assists, 2 steals and 1 blk). The back and forth nature of the game kept me squealing and you could tell that Jon Barry was getting into the excitement as well. David West was hitting clutch buckets, and Wes Matthews put on a show down the stretch too. This was one of the better games of the year. I’m glad I got to watch it in real time.

KD for MVP (revisited)

I’m hoping that KD’s performance yesterday can finally put to rest any doubt that Durant deserves MVP over Lebron. Guarding Carmelo most of the game, Durant managed to score 41, grab 10 rebounds, dish out 9 assists, and keep Melo scoreless for the 4th quarter. I have heard people argue that Durant is only a scorer, and that may have been true going into last year. But people c’mon. KD has done nothing short of step up when his team needed him the most. In fact, everyone on the team has stepped up in Westbrook’s absence (especially Serge Ibaka) and a lot of that is KD making everyone else around him better. You can even see it during the huddles and timeouts; KD directing traffic, and giving feedback when needed. No one knows how the second half of the season will play out, but if MVP were voted on today, I think he would have to be the winner.

Big game tonight against K-State. Although he’s been flashing bits and pieces of brilliance, seems like Joel Embiid has been slightly off his game (from what little I have seen the past few ballgames). He’s still rumored to be the number one pick; which got me to thinking about the ideal spots for Embiid to land next year, should he decide to leave Lawrence. He can’t drive a car yet so maybe that would affect the scenario a bit, but I’m going to give it a few days and chomp on this a bit, and get back to you. Hopefully he’ll get in a groove tonight and have a monster game. All Star weekend approaching and all this snow outside makes me wish I made plans to be in New Orleans this Saturday and Sunday. What perfect timing to be in the N.O.–warmer weather, a great line-up of festivities, Mardi Gras approaching, and of course, its New Orleans. I’m a little jelly of those who get to make it down there. As exciting as it would be to go to New York for next year’s All Star Weekend, it will still be February in New York. Not quite the same. One thing is for sure, I won’t be leaving the house unnecessarily for the next 6 weeks–perhaps this will result in more blog entries and less shenanigans. We will see.

Stay warm out there.

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