Monday, June 25, 2012

Fashion going too far

The word missing here is sympathy. 
What in the world was Jeremy Scott thinking when he came up with this design?
Scott has built himself a reputation with bizarre designs that are notoriously favored by celebrities, but this style crosses the line.
I'm elated that Adidas chose to cancel production on these sneakers, but I'm astounded that this sketch made it this far. Plastic shackles and a tag line that states: "Got a sneaker game so hot you lock your kicks to your ankles?" Whoever thought this was a brilliant idea should just take some days off and take out a history book.
Scott may have originally thought this was an ingenious creation and meant no harm, but I hope he understands what the ramifications would be if they were released. His unique approach to this shoe may have nothing to do with slavery, but it inevitably reflects apathy toward this crude period of American history. Money is not the answer to everything.
Whenever there is any doubt, there is no doubt. 

Friday, June 22, 2012

Nike Ring Tribute to the Lebron (Video)

Nike wasn't playing any games when they released this commercial seconds after Lebron James won his first championship. That's why they're the best.
And for the younger generation out there, the song playing in the background is "I Want You" by Marvin Gaye.

King me

The Decision has finally paid off.
After nine long years, Lebron James has finally entered into the fraternity of the elite— NBA Champions.
“It’s about damn time,” said James ecstatically after realizing he no longer has to dream about holding the coveted Larry O’Brein trophy.
That vision James eagerly yearned for was now a reality.
Arguably no player in this history has been given such an onerous task to overcome. In large part due to his so called betrayal to the Cleveland Cavaliers organization and coming out fiesta in South Beach that predicted several championships, James has been obliterated by newspapers and television for every minute detail of his life.
Hate him or love him, he demands for respect that he has finally reached his goal. The league has never seen a player of James’ caliber. His ability to defend all positions is astonishingly remarkable. Additionally, let’s not undermine what James can do on the offensive end. His manners may reflect his ease to soar over defenders serenely and rack up triple doubles, but it’s not easy. As prolific as James is though, he couldn't do it by himself though.
James decided to join Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh on July 8 two years ago because he needed help. There would have been controversy no matter what team he chose to take his talents to.
Danny Gilbert and Cavaliers organization had more than enough amount of time to equip the best young prodigy in the league with remotely decent players. But they didn’t even come close. In the James’ last year during the off-season, the only adjustment they made was hiring Byron Scott as head coach. So before Cleveland says their former “Chosen One” disrespected them with an unnecessary national free agency decision, remind yourself that James was disrespected first.
Let’s be honest; do you really think James would have won a ring anytime soon with the recent transformation of the Eastern Conference? 
Can’t blame James for leaving either because Gilbert still manages to guarantee things that never will happen. “I guaranteed that  the Cleveland Cavaliers will win an NBA championship before Lebron James and the Miami Heat,” were the famous words uttered by Gilbert two years ago. Nonetheless, he at least tweeted congratulations to the Heat for winning.
Now with their second championship in franchise history, Miami is on the journey for more. The last two games played by the Heat was the way Pat Riley envisioned the team playing when forming this unit. 

James didn't do it on his own though. He needed a wing-man, and Wade humbly accepted. 
As much as he’s criticized, a lot of this year’s credit should be given to Wade. It’s still Wade County in South Beach, but Wade has allowed James to take over as the sheriff. Easier said than done, but this step allowed James’ game to flourish in the playoffs and average nearly 30 points in the finals. James’ didn’t even nip over 20 a game in last year’s finals against Dallas.
Few forget, but it was Wade who was dissecting Dallas’ interior similar to in 2006. 2012 was different though. Wade was comfortable with riding shotgun. His game may have looked faltered, but that was because he wanted Lebron to adapt to taking over the team.   
The weeks of sacrifice of Wade deferring to Lebron will eventually evolve into a lifetime paradise.
This is just one championship of many by these two potent superstars.  

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

James delivers in the clutch after all

If the question of which “Big 3” is more talented is still floating around, it’s not too far fetch to say that South Beach’s three superstars have ascended as the clear frontrunners. 
The Miami Heat’s three all-stars weathered the storm from last year’s displeasure against the Dallas Mavericks, and now stand 48 minutes away from accomplishing the indelible— an NBA Championship.
The sole reason why the Heat franchise is one game away from their second championship is because of the 2011-12 NBA MVP, Lebron James.
With immense expectations regardless of the scenario, James has delivered in “clutch” moments and should be lauded for his efforts.
The definition of clutch has been undermined by this generation and even respectable columnists and reporters to simply mean the closing seconds of a game and that’s it. Wrong. The appropriate definition that should be associated with the word is to perform under pressure. Clutch moments aren’t just witnessed during final shots when the clock reads all zeros. High pressured situations happen repeatedly throughout a game.

James may have been unable to finish out the remaining minute due to cramps, but his three-pointer with the shot clock winding down wasn’t the only memory that should be kept in mind during his heroic efforts in Game 4.
The Oklahoma City Thunder were given an early opportunity to pummel the Heat to misery in the first half and failed to do so after Norris Cole’s three ignited a magnificent run. 
Down by 17 would be considered a pretty daunting task for any team to recover from, especially in the first half. The Thunder gravitated away while Miami stormed back in large efforts because of James. OKC kept going for the haymaker and watched Miami counter back steadily. Erasing nearly a 20-point deficit with over 36 minutes left of basketball to play during the NBA Finals screams clutch.
Miami could have easily lost the game in the first half if it wasn’t for James’ prowess to affect all aspects of the game. He did it through passing which illustrates why he ended with 10 assists at halftime and by attacking the paint in the post. There is no bigger stage than the NBA Finals. Quite frankly, games may be credited by stupendous plays in the fourth quarter, but shouldn’t polarize efforts made in the first, second and even third.
Game 4 was a collaborative effort by every Heat member from Mario Chalmers' crunch-time shots to Shane Battier’s loose ball tip, but the captain leading that ship was James. His game is cut from a different fabric, and his performances relentlessly echo why he’s an indomitable force.  
The clock is running out for the Thunder, and if they plan on ruining Thursday night’s parade at America Airlines Arena, James Harden has to contribute in some manner. 
Harden has been prolific throughout these playoffs until now. From NBA 6th Man of the Year to a non-factor in the Finals is quite a steep decline. Plays that usually resulted in made threes and "and-ones" have gone missing. 
Rather than being a difference maker, Harden has sunk to just another guy in the rotation. 
Kevin Durant's 28 and Russell Westbrook's remarkable 43-point explosion combined for over 70 percent of the scoring in Game 4. That wasn't the formula that the Thunder used to get here.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Interview turned Ugly: David Stern (Audio)

The endless amount of questions regarding the NBA lottery being rigged finally got to the NBA commissioner David Stern. Stern reached his boiling point and the sacrificial lamb in this interview was Jim Rome.
In  response to the lottery being fixed, Stern replied "have you stopped beating your wife?" The lash out by Stern was implying that Rome asked a loaded question. Rome does NOT have a record of domestic violence.
The call between both gentlemen is quite amusing, especially the ending: "Listen, I got to call someone important. Like Stephen A. Smith..."

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Scoring Champ outduels MVP

A matchup between the NBA’s MVP and scoring champion was what everyone yearned for. This year’s finals would display two heavyweights battling for the opportunity to be crowned the “best player in the league” and the chance to win an NBA Championship.
Game 1 went to three-time scoring champ as Kevin Durant outshined Lebron James in an Oklahoma City rally to win 105-94.   
During last year’s NBA Finals, Miami struggled with Dirk Nowitzki's willingness in the fourth quarter, and this year’s task may be lean in physique, but is much more daunting. He goes by the name of “Duranchilla.”
Igniting for 17 points in the fourth quarter wasn’t anything new to any of the Thunder fans. At the age of 23, Durant’s offensive talents are immeasurable. His prolific array of mid-range shots, freakish length, and ability to soar over defenders effortlessly in the air makes him very tough to defend. Durant illustrated this perfectly last night while making shots over Dwyanne Wade and Shane Battier.
The only disadvantage on the sensational scorer is his size. Quite frankly, using James to defend Durant is the only option. James may not be able to stop Durant’s wide range of talents, but definitely will be able to contain and slow him down. When Durant is connecting from the beyond the arc and producing points in the paint, there really isn’t too much defenders can do. James’ quick feet and wide body give Miami the best chance to limiting Durant. 

As sensational as young Durant’s performance was in Game 1, he will have a better showing if not several in the remaining games of this series. Durant’s performance is contingent on Russell Westbrook’s play. Westbrook is a gift and a curse. His relentless explosion and selective amnesia of missed shots is the reason why he’s able to tear apart defenses. The crux is his impatience on offensive as he always outnumbers Durant in shot attempts.
K.D.’s 20 attempts compared to Westbrook’s 24 in Game 1 is something that the two are still learning to fix. As helpful as Westbrook may be in easing pressure off Durant, he must understand that there is a reason why Durant is the three-time scoring champion and was second in MVP voting. As kids used to say at the park, “He [Durant] gets buckets.” 
Once Durant and Westbrook are able to adjust their shot attempts between each other, that is when the Thunder will truly be at their peak.
Miami showed some great ball movement in the first half with big plays from Mario Chalmers and Battier. In order for Miami to actually defeat OKC at home, the Heat will need that to be consistent in both halves rather one.
Heading into Game 2, OKC’s momentum should be through the roof. They’re undefeated at home and the city is certain this is their year for the title. The only way for Miami to alter this mood is to send a message. That message would consist of pounding the ball inside rather than settling for outside shots.
The Thunder won with James Harden only scoring five points. That won’t be the case in Game 2.

Friday, June 8, 2012

T.O. dumps Drew

What happen to commitment and till death do us part? I guess Terrell Owens and longtime agent Drew Rosenhaus are no exception to why the divorce rate in America is so high.
Though Owens has been unable to draw any attention from NFL teams, the future Hall of Famer is certain that his new best friend, Dallas-based agent Jordan Woy, believes in his talent to not only help an NFL Team, but as a person. Now that's adorable!
Other than spotting T.O. on the bench press at press conferences in his driveway, Woy only has one simple task— SHOW ME THE MONEY.  

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Stars and Strikes Bowling Extravaganza

In his annual Stars and Strikes Bowling Extravaganza, Shaun Phillips & the San Diego Chargers hit the bowling lanes to raise money for the After-School All-Stars. The evening culminated with a challenge for Antwan Cason to bowl a strike on his first attempt. With a couple of grand on the line, check out footage to find out how he did.

Above is a blurb that I wrote for an up-and-coming magazine called Deep Coverage. The magazine's mission is to give fans a chance to get to know players on and off the gridiron. Check out the beta version of their site: You can also follow Deep Coverage on Twitter at @deepcoverage.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Boston ruins Miami's Big 3 reunion

The Boston Celtics in a pivotal Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals have left half of the world agape. And will have the chance on Thursday to send the Miami Heat to South Beach for good.
From up two games to on the verge of elimination, Miami for the fourth straight game was mentally and physically outplayed by the Celtics.
The alleged South Beach Dream Team is all of a sudden in trouble.
After edging out the Indiana Pacers in six games, the Heat advanced to the ECF confident against the older Boston. The Celtics were plagued by injuries all year around and still didn’t contain the fire power they once had. But as the playoffs progressed, Bean Town emerged. There’s no error when looking at how old all the members of the Celtics Big 3 are, but the will to win is never contingent on a player’s age. This one attribute, Miami took for granted.
Boston’s desire to prove critics wrong is what fuels them. From the naysayers that accused Rajon Rondo to being the Achilles' heel of this unit to Atlanta Hawks co-owner Michael Gearon Jr. firing shots at Kevin Garnett’s style of play, this has motivated the Celts to prove the so-called experts to be erroneous about their impetus.
The column for wisdom always goes unnoticed in sporting events. This statistic never shows up in box scores, but proves to be a key factor late in games. 
Want to know how those "old heads" with outdated sneakers at the park or gym could always beat the much younger and energetic team: basketball knowledge. This is the one category Boston has a wide advantage in.
Old school is also another name for the Celtics style of play. There are no individuals or superstars in this play. Different players produce, but every member is essential in procuring a victory. 
Not one of Rondo’s best offensive games, but his assists proved to be critical in disrupting the Heat’s defense. Ray Allen is another member who wasn’t connecting on all cylinders, but contributed with clutch free throws and big rebounds. Furthermore, Pierce’s production throughout the game was streaky. However, when the game was on the line, he sealed the deal with a shot over Lebron James.
The list can go on for key efforts made from each Boston member, but it all correlates behind the concept of a team. Team’s aren’t built over night either which could explain for Miami’s problems. The resiliency and potency demonstrated by the Celtics reflects the heart of a champion. And behind every team is a venerable coach.
Doc Rivers has been the difference maker within this series, but he’ll never admit it. Rivers has preached to his team that the Heat still haven’t seen their best 48 minutes, and he’s right.
To be able to win against a superior Miami team statistic wise with Rondo, Pierce and Allen shooting a combined 11-of-43 is amazing. Not to mention that Dwyane Wade and James combined for 57 points.
Rivers and Celtics believe that they can compete with anyone on the court right now. The Celtics have the Heat backed against the ropes and Miami has failed to answer back.
Now with the onerous task of having to win in the Boston Garden and then back at home to close the series out, the Heat are skating on thin ice.
Miami isn’t out of this series, but will have to do some heavy reevaluation if they expect to win Game 6, let alone advance to the NBA Finals. 
Sorry to burst the bubble, but this is the wrong time for reassessment. The playoffs are where champions rise and pretenders wither.

Wednesday Classics: The Truth

Watching Paul Pierce lure Lebron James to sleep last night to hit the three had classic "Truth" written all over it. Seems like it's 2008 all over again.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Still chasing the Golden Bear

This is classic Tiger Woods or as some fans would say Tiger Tiger Tiger Tiger Tiger Woods Y'all!
For the fifth time in his career, Woods rallied back to win the Memorial advancing him to his 73rd PGA win. Better yet was tying Nicklaus for career PGA Tour victories at the tournament that Jack built. It doesn't get any more symmetrical.
Now 11 days away from the U.S. Open, this is exactly what Woods needed as he strides for the "Golden Bear's" 18 major championships— Woods currently has 14.

The heat is on Miami

In an alluring Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals, the Boston Celtics evened up the series against the Miami Heat after a breathtaking final attempt by Dwyane Wade rimmed off the cylinder as time expired.
The Heat’s cruise-by victory in Game 1 and Rajon Rondo’s explosion for 44 points are all a part of the past; it’s now a best out of three series to advance to the NBA Championship.
With the odds heavily in Miami’s favor, the Celtics delivered in two must win games with their backs against the wall. The Celtics have been pushed aside this season for a myriad of reasons from age to depth, but here they stand tied with a far superior team talent wise.  
After Derrick Rose’s injury in the first round, it was assumed that the Heat would return back to the NBA Finals. Wrong. The Heat may be the most talented “group” in the East, but definitely aren’t the best team.
Just as they dealt with last year, this team fails to have any team chemistry. Both the Indiana Pacers and Celtics have attacked this weakness which explains Miami’s perplexing half-court offense.
Miami is one of the best fast break teams because of how volatile Lebron James and Wade are in the open court. When it comes down to the x’s and o’s, this unit shrivels.
Chris Bosh plays a role in this to some degree. His versatility spreads the floor and serves as a major decode which ultimately frees space up for Wade and James. But even with Bosh, the Heat demonstrates signs of how stagnant their offense can be.
Relying on Wade and James to play one-on-one for 48 minutes is asinine. A majority of the time when James and Wade have the ball, the rest of the team fades to the opposite end of the court. Their offensive structure is deficient.
Watching the Heat run a diagrammed play is similar to watching children play the video game NBA 2K12 with player lock on Wade and James (player lock is a feature in video game consoles that permits the user to only control one player throughout the whole game).
The Heat offensive is too contingent on isolation. There’s nothing wrong with Wade and James scoring more than 50 percent of the points. The problem comes when it’s not within the flow of the offense.
There is too much “hot potato” going on in the half court. Defenses are elated when their opponents stand still and don’t cut through the lanes. It gives them a breather and benefits them more in helping on the weak side. Movement is key for any offense to excel.
Boston took Miami’s blows and countered back with two straight. The momentum is clearly on the Celtics’ side seeing as the Heat hasn’t played well since Game 1. Regardless if Bosh plays or not in Game 5, Miami needs Wade to play like the superstar he is. That’s the bottom line.