I know this happened earlier in the week but it needs to be addressed. Watch the video.
He quickly glances at Blake’s groin area, cocks back, and tally whacks him. What the hell?! He swung like he was Rocky in a meat cellar. He’s a regular Randall Simon with how he treats sausage. And David Stern and gang didn’t think this was worth a suspension? That’s ridiculous, their job is to protect their players from cheap shots1 like this and they completely balked. Griffin suggested that Ibaka wasn’t suspended so as not to affect the TV ratings of the Thunder-Lakers game the next day. Maybe he had a point2.
But what the lack of suspension really did was allow an epidemic to continue: dick-punching in basketball. It’s found its way in to all levels of the game. Nicolas Batum did it in the Olympics. DWade got suspended earlier this year for a groin kick. Tyler Zeller and Derrick Nix exchanged blows in a Big Ten game a couple weeks back. And now Ibaka. NBA players hold themselves with a swagger that no other professional athletes can match, yet every time they get mad they immediately target another person’s junk. It’s really cutting into their manly image. Remember the Bad Boys? The 80’s Celtics? ’04 Pacers3? Those teams had guys who would throw a punch if the time called for it. I mean, I’m not asking for fights with hockey-style regularity, but c’mon, STOP PUNCHING EACH OTHER’S PENISES! I’m upset that this needed to be said.
2. Chicago Blackhawks currently starting the season with record-breaking 24 games without losing in regulation.
I know what you’re thinking, “The NHL season started already?” and the answer’s “Yes”. Apparently two months ago, those that run the NHL dislodged their heads from you-know-where long enough to get the season started and it seems like the Hawks were the only team ready for this. They’ve been dominant with a +32 goal differential (second best is +17) behind 32 combined goals by Patrick Kane, Jonothan Toews, and Marian Hossa. Meanwhile, shaky goaltending last year (2.82 GAA as a team) has turned into the team’s best quality. Together, Corey Crawford (1.53 GAA) and Ray Emery (2.02) and, of course, former Spartan Duncan Keith have helped Chicago become the hardest team to score on thus far this year. Too bad we rarely get to see a full season these days or this team could compete to become one of the best of all time. Unfortunately, a shortened season will always put an asterisk next to their record4.
3. I love the new James Harden/Kris Humphries commercials
If you haven’t seen them, here’s one. And the other. They crack me up. Basically anything James Harden does cracks me up. Whether it’s getting his beard torn off in earlier foot locker commercials or making Kris Humphries come across as the world’s biggest creep, he just makes me happy. And the inclusion of Kris Humphries is genius. Think about it. The commercial appeals to regular male basketball fans AND it appeals to a huge female audience who would otherwise have no interest in foot locker. Any woman who reads tabloid magazines5knows who Humphries is because of his 17-second marriage to Kim Kardashian. If you want to appeal to that demographic you either have to pick the absolute best in the game that ANYONE would know (Kobe, Lebron) or you bargain shop for Humphries, make him look like a huge weirdo, and now females love the commercial. Just like me. But for different reasons.
1. I don’t think anyone would label Serge Ibaka a dirty player but there’s no doubt this was a dirty play.
2. If this factored in to the decision at all it makes no sense. When KD, Kobe, Dwight Howard and Russell Westbrook are playing who is tuning in to watch Serge Ibaka?
3. Ok maybe not them.
4. This isn’t meant to be an insult but if they were to break the record for, say, best winning percentage in a season, people would always say that it was done in a lockout shortened season.
5. So 99% of them. They like weird things.