Thursday, May 31, 2007
Griz, we feel your pain
What happens when the air goes out of a ping pong ball? Oh, right, ping pong balls don’t have air, they are vacuum sealed.
Just when we thought that things couldn’t get any worse in our part of the NBA world, it did. Admittedly, there are very few “sure things” in the bounce of the ball, but when there is a 25 percent chance that your team will come away with number one in the NBA Draft, that is serious cause for optimism.
At season’s end there were 16 teams which finished below the .500 threshold. Of these, as we all know, the Memphis Grizzlies had the worst record.
If they had been in the NFL, they would have been given the first pick of the litter of all new, and raw talent, coming out of the collegiate pool, as they say in England, merely by right of accession.
I know there is loose talk that some of these teams were told to deliberately “tank” their scores in order to improve their chances in the draft. I don’t hold to that premise for one second.
One only has to look at the Memphis Grizzlies’ final scores in many of their games to see that these guys were playing with determination. They turned in some high scores, often breaking the century mark. And they were dealing with a few forms of adversity. This had to affect morale.
Whereas I share the sentiments of the Griz’ general manager (the departing Jerry West), that the present lottery system is antiquated and in need of revamping, I can’t agree that there are lucrative picks beyond number two. There is no shred of equity. The medal awarding stops cold at third place.
Sure, some deals could materialize, but I don’t feel that any of them at this point would involve the hottest prospect, Greg Oden, or number two hotty, Kevin Durant.
Griz, we feel your pain. Maybe ping pong balls should have air in them.
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