Wild Wild West Returns

Tonight, Delonte West will make his official return to the Boston Celtics lineup as they host the Washington Wizards.  Delonte has finished serving his ten game suspension for pleading guilty to a weapon’s charge back in July.  He is expected in uniform tonight and will come off the bench for Doc Rivers.

Boston has always loved Delonte.  Long before the fans learned of his quirky personality and how hilarious he is during any given interview, the fans loved the way he played the game.  I was among those sad to see Delonte leave when the Celtics traded him as apart of the Ray Allen deal back in 2007.  He has always played the game hard and will be a welcome spark off the bench for this Celtics club.

You have got to love Delonte.  Whether you love him because of his “wire-hangah” commerical, his relationship with LeBron’s mom, or just his hard nosed style of play, it is impossible to have any feelings of ill will toward him.

His actual impact on the floor for the Celtics will be significant.  Pairing him in the back court will allow Nate Robinson to explode on any given night offensively.  Defensively, Delonte will be able to man up his opponent and make him work hard for their points. Delonte will also allow Ray Allen and Paul Pierce to play less minutes, keeping them fresh for when the playoffs arrive.

I have said it time and time again that the Celtics bench is better than some of the starting fives in the NBA.  Even though they are still without Kendrick Perkins and Jermaine O’Neal, the bench got one of their key components back tonight.  Welcome back Delonte.


The NBA = LAME: Technicals & Predictable

Alright, here’s the deal.  I have never been an NBA guy.  I am a self proclaimed “pink-hat” Celtics fan and only watch when NBA rings are on the line.  Even when the Celtics lost to the Lakers in that crucial game 7 last year, I simply turned off the TV and fell asleep.  I lost more Z’s when I found out Michael Scott was leaving The Office after this current season.  Anyhow, my point is that the NBA is more lame and predictable than white rice.

As if the NBA weren’t obnoxious enough, the powers at be decided that it would be a good idea to give someone a technical foul for disrespecting a referee.  You know what, for someone who has reffed and umpired I think this a great idea.  If you curse out a ref, blow the whistle.  Make inappropriate contact? I pity the fool, get Mr. T ready.  Whip a chair onto the court or touch Lebron’s mom?  Well, you get it…

Cracking down on this kind of stuff will keep the hooligans at bay, I love it.  Is this what “Donald” (thanks Mr. Mayor) Stern and the NBA suits talking about?  Surely no.  I feel that this NBA decision was derived by way of the manatee in the South Park episode that made fun of how Family Guy gets their material.  Here’s a portion of the new rule:

“We’re going to expand the universe of unsportsmanlike actions that will be penalized,” said NBA vice president of basketball operations Stu Jackson. “They will include air-punching at an official. Waving him off as a sign of disrespect. Running up to an official from across the court to voice a complaint. Flailing arms in disbelief. Jumping up and down and pirouetting in disbelief or clapping sarcastically at an official. Those are some of the types of actions that really have no place in our game.” (SI.com)
Really? If you can’t handle a pirouette then turn in the zebra shirt.  The first time I heard this portion of the rule I literally thought it was a bad April fool’s joke.  I kept thinking to myself that there is no way a professional sports organization would resort to something as trivial as the above.  Boy was I wrong.  After I found out about this I vowed not to watch the NBA this season.  I’m going to stand true to this as best as humanly possible.  Tonight, I’m watching because I hate Lebron and if anyone can ruin his cute little parade to Miami, I want it to be Boston.  After tonight, who cares?
Tonight, I watched “an unnamed assistant coach” from the Miami bench get a technical because he stood up and turned his palms toward the sky after a travel call against Dwayne Wade.  Technical fouls should be reserved for game altering scenarios that are negative in nature.  Did that assistant coach change the tempo of the game?  No.  The NBA is run by a bunch of nerds who were picked on when they were in high school and now they are taking it out on bigger people “because they can.” Get real.
I’m also watching tonight to see how many Delonte West masks are in the crowd to taunt Lebron James.  This is an absolutely hilarious stunt put on by Toucher & Rich on the morning show for 98.5 the Sports Hub.  Off topic but, if you haven’t switched over to 98.5 from WEEI, do yourself a favor and get with the program.  All four programs exceed WEEI’s by leaps and bounds.  I do miss Dale and Holley a little bit but I’m over it.
To close things out, the NBA is beyond predictable.  At the beginning of the year you can pick out the top 4 teams that will contend for the title.  How many people thought back in April that Texas and San Francisco would be competing for a World Series?  Who’s the team to beat in the NFL this year?  Who is going to bring home the Stanley Cup?  Exactly, the answer to the previous questions are no one, no clue, and no clue.
The NBA can go suck eggs for all I care.  I’ll get my basketball fix from the NCAA as I prepare for March Madness glory/losing to that chick at the office who picked Butler to go a long way because her friend’s cousin’s boyfriend has a bulldog puppy and they are just the cutest thing.

The Event is Here

I have had today’s date marked on my calendar since approximately July 8 of this year.  On that night LeBron James made “the decision” to leave Cleveland and sign with the Miami Heat joining Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh.  It is well documented that his move to broadcast his decision on ESPN in primetime might be one of the most laughable public relations gaffes in history.  A few days later the NBA released the 2010-2011 schedule with the Boston Celtics hosting the Miami Heat to tip off the season.  The day has finally arrived.  This is The Event, not to be confused with the sci-fi television show on NBC with poor acting.

I have been home from work all of ten minutes and have already changed into my Paul Pierce jersey.  Yes, I have fallen hook line and sinker for all the hype that tonight’s game brings.  I am mindful that in the grand scheme of things the game means absolutely nothing, yet I feel I am more excited for this game than I was Game 7 of last year’s NBA Finals.  Okay, maybe that using a bit of hyperbole.  But my hatred of LeBron James is well documented and there is nothing I’d like to see more than for the Celtics cool the Heat tonight.

Tonight starts the last run for the group of Celtics in their chase for Banner 18.  Their nucleus is aging but they still are among the elite in the game.  All reports out of Boston are that the guys are the healthiest they’ve been in a long time.  Paul Pierce is playing pain free, Garnett is running the court well an jumping through the roof, Shaq even looks to be in good shape.  The excitement is a mix of squaring off against a new rival and the realization that this is the beginning of the end for the Celts.

Last year we learned that the regular season means absolutely nothing in the NBA.  With that being said I still fully expect the Celtics to be “up” for games against the likes of the Heat and the Lakers.  Tonight is Miami’s first test.  Many questions will be answered.  Can the new big three co-exist?  Who’s team is this, LeBron or D-Wade?  Will the Heat be able to keep up with a roster as deep as the Celtics?  Did Gloria James (LeBron’s mom)  sleep at Delonte West’s house last night?

With about two hours until game time I am like a three year old after drinking a gallon of Mountain Dew, more excited than Jessie Spano, and am filled with adrenaline. The Miami Heat will begin and end their season in Boston.  That road starts tonight.   At long last, October 26 is here.  The NBA season is about to begin.  Tonight we will witness The Event.


Welcome Back Delonte!

Yesterday, The Boston Celtics and Delonte West agreed to a non-guaranteed contract rounding out the roster for the 2010 season.  Count me as one who is very excited about bringing Delonte back.  I was a huge fan of how he played the game when he was in Boston during the “Pre-Big Three Era.”  He was traded to Seattle in 2007 for Ray Allen and has since played for the Sonics and the Cavs.  Even when he was with the Cavs, I found it extremely difficult to root against him. 

Delonte brings even more depth to a team that is strong 1-12.  I presume that he will push Von Wafer down the depth chart and come off the bench to give Ray Allen or Paul Pierce a rest.  Should Delonte make the team, he will be suspended for the first 10 games of the season because he plead out to a gun charge over the summer. 

A lot of the talk in bringing Delonte back will be the rumors of his relationship with LeBron’s mother.  I personally find this whole mess hysterical.  The argument can be made that Delonte is the reason LeBron quit on the Cavs during the playoffs last year. Now the Celtics have Shaq to get under Kobe’s skin and Delonte to get under LeBron’s.  I like Danny Ainge’s mind game tactics!

So the Celtics, roster is pretty much set for the 2010 campaign.  They are certainly deeper than in years past.  They are also a lot bigger than in years past.  The lack of rebounding that plagued this team last year should not be a problem this season.  The team will also be a very entertaining one with characters such as Shrek and Donkey (Nate Robinson and Glen Davis), Shaq, and now Delonte West.   I expect the Celtics to get no less than a three seed in the East and I believe they will make the Eastern Conference Finals yet again.

It is my help that the Celtics can help Delonte turn his career around.  He has the potential to be a very solid contributor off the bench.  He is gritty and hustles.  Those qualities alone make you a fan favorite in Boston.  Let’s just hope he stays sane and his mental health issues don’t get the best of him.

In closing I will leave you with a quote from the great Delonte West.  

“Twenty years from now, you’re going to see me riding in a drop top hummer buck naked with some ankle socks on and a headband on — Boston Celtics headband on — standing up driving from Boston to California. That’s what I’m going to be doing.”