Saturday, November 29, 2008

My All-(fill in blank) Team

We all have favorite players, and we all have players that we dislike. Here, I reveal my picks to all of you guys. Tell me what you think, if you agree/disagree, all that stuff. ****DISCLAIMER****: All of the "Hated" players are still respected by me. I respect anybody who plays in the NBA, and I know that I'll never be able to take them, ever. But I do know that I don't like how they play on the court, off the court, things like that. Here are my "All-(fill in the blank) First Team (with two runner-ups included every time)", and I hope you guys all agree. Or not. Whatever. Just tell me what you think, you know? Here is my opinion on basically all aspects of opinionship in the NBA.

My All-Favorite Team: Retired
These are my favorite players ever. I try to emulate every single one of them, and I look up to them as role models. Yes, you are, Charles.

PG: Magic Johnson
Magic was amazing. Of course, I wasn't around for when he played, and I know that I'm supposed to hate all of the lakers being a Celtics fan, and I'm supposed to think that Bird is better with all my heart, blah, blah, blah . . . but I don't and I think that Magic is the best. I mean, if you are 6'9" and the best point guard EVER? Come on. I mean, the tallest point guard that we have in the league who is legitimately a star is 6'4", and he doesn't really play like a point guard all of the time (Gilbert Arenas). Magic won 5 championships, going to the Finals 9 times. NINE. And winning five is pretty incredible. Magic has my respect. Especially from the NCAA National Championship that he won in 1979, the three MVP awards, and the Hall of Fame induction. The twelve all star appearances, nine time NBA All First Team and 3 time Finals MVP are just background. Oh yeah, and he's a two time All Star Game MVP. Magic is the best point guard ever, and that isn't changing for a while. He is truly my favorite point guard ever. And, he always kept the mood light with that huge smile of his. Runner-Ups: Gary Payton, Oscar Robertson

SG: Michael Jordan
Yes, Michael gets a lot of attention already. But he is truly a role model for me on the court, as he should be for everyone else. Jordan is the GOAT, no question in my mind. I'll let the achievements do the talking. Six time NBA Champion. Six time Finals MVP. Five time NBA MVP. Fourteen time NBA All-Star. One time Defensive Player of the Year. Nine time All-Defensive Team. Ten time All-NBA First Team. 1985 Rookie of the Year. Two time Slam Dunk Contest Winner (Nique should've won both times, though). I can't name all of them, he won a bunch of other stuff in college and after he retired. But he was just amazing. Versatile everywhere. There is not ONE hoops player or fan who does not look up to Jordan and his abilities, or wish to play like him. His turnaround jumper, his hops, his defense--and his winning ways. They're all made to emulate. SIX rings. That's a lot of, well, winning. Jordan was a winner, and he had a gift. But he was also the hardest worker the NBA had. Do you think there's a correlation there? I do. Runner-Ups: Clyde Drexler, George Gervin

SF: Julius Erving
Dr. J was one of the most entertaining and high flying players ever to pick up a basketball. He had a good deal of hardware, although he can't really touch everybody else on this list in that category. The reason that he's on this list is because he was entertaining, really. I mean, he was cool to watch, a real throwback. The reason sounds lame, but that's all there is to it. OK, let's go to the history. Dr. J won two ABA Championships and one NBA chip as well. Five time ABA all star, eleven time NBA All-Star. Three time ABA MVP, one time NBA MVP. Four time All-ABA First Team, five time All-NBA First team. A spot in the Hall. Erving was one of those first players to come over from the ABA to the NBA, and he did so seamlessly, as I have just told you, kind of. He dominated at both levels of competition, and he is the only player to have his number retired for two teams: Number 32 with the Nets (ABA) and number 6 with the Sixers (NBA). The face of a defunct league, he was also the face of an active league. Oh yeah, and he could dunk, too. Runner-Ups: Dominique Wilkins, Scottie Pippen

PF: Charles Barkley
Who doesn't like Chuck? Barkley is entertaining on the court (or he was, anyways) and at the moment he is entertaining in the studio. With the humor, controversy and play style, Barkley is an easy choice for my list of favorite players (as you see here). Standing at 6'6" (not at ALL . . . he was really 6'4", haha) he was one of (if not the) smallest power forwards in the game. He used his chiseled frame to his advantage . . . hold on, he used his big butt and fat gut to be in position for the boards, in the lane for the dunk, or behind the arc for the three. He could jump out of the gym, and he had the humor to be a household name not just with sports fans, and he made the All-Interview Team in each of his last 13 seasons. Incredibly outspoken (one of the reasons why I love Charles), he USED to be a well-known republican . . . now he wants to run for governor of Alabama. As a democrat. Wow. Oh yeah, the "I am not a role model" advertisement. This is one of those things that make you wonder about him. First of all, I don't agree with that statement, because here I am, typing on the computer, telling all of you guys who my role models are. The Round Mound of Rebound says whatever is on his mind, and he doesn't care what you think about it. Sometimes I agree with him, sometimes I don't you get used to him. He was the best player to not win a chip, but he did win an MVP award, two gold medals, an All-Star game MVP, and eleven all star selections among other achievements. Runner-Ups: Karl Malone, Shawn Kemp

C: Bill Russell
Russell was one of the first dominant forces in the NBA, and he was definitely the first black superstar in the league. So let's get down to business on Russell's accomplishments. He won ELEVEN NBA Finals'. ELEVEN. At one point, he won eight in a row. EIGHT IN A ROW. Talk about a dynasty. Russell was average height for a center at the time (6'9" or 6'10"? We don't know . . .), but he wasn't an average player. Five time MVP. Twelve time All-Star. ELEVEN NBA Finals. I can't say that enough. He did a lot of other stuff too, but those were the highlights. He wasn't the nicest of fellows to people who weren't his teammates, friends or family, and he didn't exactly like the media. Apparently, based on what Tom Heinsohn has said, Russell had a sense of need to win, and he routinely threw up before games. He did this so often, in fact, that his teammates were worried when he didn't. This man had almost seven thousand more boards than he did points in his career, and he averaged 15.1 points. He averaged 22.5 rebounds for his whole career. That's insane. Runner-Ups: David Robinson, Hakeem Olajuwon

My All-Favorite Team: Current
This team is basically my favorite players as to how they play, how they act offcourt, things like that. I just really like this next team, they are definitely role models.

PG: Baron Davis
Baron Davis is one of those rare players who is larger than life. He hasn't won a ton of awards, he hasn't brought home a Larry O'Brien, but his sense of humor is untouchable. The co-founder of has made at least one hilarious video that I'm sure most of you have seen, you know, the one with him and the Clippers jersey at the restaurant? Anyways, there's always a smile on this point guard's face. Big for his position at 6'3", 214 pounds (almost EXACTLY Deron Williams' dimensions), Baron can dunk over anybody, most notably Andrei Kirilenko (2006-07 playoffs). Baron is extremely fun to watch, has a warm aura about him, and that makes him a fan favorite, even with fans outside of LA. BDiddy has averaged 17.1 points, 7.2 assists, 4.1 rebounds and 2 steals per game over his ten year career (ten and a fifth, I guess, with the 2008-09 season counting). He is looking to bring the Clips back to life, the face of the franchise. Well I don't see that happening, but Baron will keep chugging. Runner-Ups: Deron Williams, Devin Harris

SG: Dwyane Wade
Watching Dwyane Wade play basketball is like watching Rocky Balboa in the ring with Ivan Drago in his fourth movie. Rocky goes in there and basically gets pummeled constantly by a man who killed another in the ring just months beforehand. Dwyane's game is similar. Wade drives to the hoop, scores, falls down, stays there for a minute, stands up, hits the free throw, three points for the Heat. And he does it all night. And, if he's got teammates around him, he'll pick up 22, 7, 5 and 2 per night. Wade is a warrior, he sacrifices his body routinely to win, be it in the NBA Finals or midseason. I love his effort, that's why he makes this list. He's a great finisher, and his shooting is improving. He would be a good point guard in my opinion, even if he is 6'4", but he doesn't like it. His position is "drive-n-score". I love watching Dwyane Wade play basketball. Oh yeah, one other thing I like about D-Wade: I like how you spell "Dwyane". Took me forever to figure it out. Runner-Ups: Joe Johnson, Brandon Roy

SF: LeBron James
Some of you know that I'm very passionate about defending LeBron James. I have an example. SLAM had a contest about two and a half months ago. We had to write about how LeBron James shows a passion for the game. The prize was limited edition colorway LeBron Zoom Soldier IIs. Me being the type of guy who loves LeBron, I won the contest. So, without going more into all of that stuff, here was my entry: "Lebron shows a passion for the game in everything that he does on the basketball court and off the basketball court. He shows a passion for the game by respecting its past, present, and future. In his own words, lebron is “a mixture of old school and new school”. lebron shows a passion for the game by respecting his opponent, never trashing them after wins and never making excuses after losses. he shows a passion for the game by winning with humility and losing with grace. lebron shows a passion for the game by representing his home country, something that he clearly wants to do. lebron shows a passion for the game by not hogging the ball, but spreading it around to everyone, just like how basketball is supposed to be played. lebron shows a passion for the game by playing hard in every minute, taking every opportunity. Lebron shows a passion for the game by being generous with his hard earned money, giving to charities and giving money to support his beliefs. lebron shows a passion for the game on a daily basis." That is, in a nutshell, why LeBron is my favorite small forward. Runner-Ups: Stephen Jackson, Rudy Gay

PF: Al Jefferson
Big Al is under-the-radar. People know him as a big star, but he doesn't routinely come up in the superstar talk. But he is. He has a lot of free reign in Minny, and I like how he plays, his post moves are just insane. I don't know why I keep telling you guys that I love how they play, because that's why I put them in here. Wow. Sorry about that. Anyways. Al Jefferson is playing a bit of center for the L-Wolves at the moment, but that's because they are short and undersized, and his true position is power forward. It took a little while for him to pan out, but he has shown everybody that he's the boss in Minnesota. And, he's still young. He hasn't won any awards, he hasn't made the all-star team, yet last year I think he should've. He averaged 21 points, 11.1 boards, 1.4 assists, 1.5 blocks and .9 steals per game, all career highs. OK, I guess he shouldn't have made the all-star game, that was a good call. But he was still sick, and he's on the rise. Jefferson's a beast. Runner-Ups: David West, Chris Bosh

C: Dwight Howard
Howard is just like Jefferson, as in he is a very young big who is already dominating the league. Just there are a few differences between Howard and Big Al. Howard is a year younger, and has a lot more hardware then Jefferson, even if they are only titles. Howard was the youngest player in the NBA to do all of the following: reach 3,000 rebounds, reach 4,000 rebounds, average a double-double, record 20 rebounds in one game, and to lead the league in rebounds. He also has the highest career all-star game field goal percentage, not like that means anything. He has made two all-star appearances, and he has made the NBA All-Defensive Team last year, that coming with an all NBA First Team selection as well. Dwight averaged 14.2 boards per game last year. Being 22 years old? OK, Howard, cut the crap. But this guy is for real. Last year he averaged totals of 20.7 points, 14.2 rebounds, 2.2 blocks, and 1.3 assists per game, dominating, well, everyone. He won a gold medal in Beijing this summer, and that's only adding to his stacked titles and whatnot. Of course, he won the dunk contest in 2008, that certainly being a memorable one. He also has a great sense of humor, his favorite movie is "Finding Nemo", for example. And, of course, the Superman cape. Dwight Howard's just a beast. Runner-Ups: Amare Stoudemire, David Lee

So those are my favorite players. Those needed more detail, whereas the other teams that I'm about to put up require less, although there will be some explanation. Here we go.

All-Hated Team: Current
These are the players that I dislike most in the NBA. Check the disclaimer above again, I don't have much against these guys. I just don't like how the play or act. I fully respect every player in the NBA, just these are the ones that I don't like very much. At all. Don't think I'm a hate machine or anything, these players just annoy me.

PG: Stephon Marbury
Starbury needs to cooperate in order to get what he wants in New York. Things are going slowly, and it's just leaving me annoyed at him for all of it. He needs to stop whining and cooperate. I used to like Steph, but he's making that harder and harder every time I see him in a headline. I hope he gets this worked out, but for the moment, I don't have much love for Marbury. Runner-Ups: N/A

SG: Kobe Bryant
I have a tremendous amount of respect for the Black Mamba. But, I'm a Celtics fan. A LeBron jockrider (admittedly). I prefer Shaq. I also think that rape is a serious crime. Everything lines up for me to dislike Kobe, and it all works to be that way. I will never like Kobe Bryant, but again, my respect is unwavering. He's still my second least favorite player in the NBA. Runner-Ups: Josh Howard, Ben Gordon

SF: Lamar Odom
A lot of you guys know how much I hate Odom. I have made this very clear. He plays dirty (sometimes). He plays like he doesn't care often. He never has his shirt tucked in (show respect, dude!). He's always got that smirk on his face when he's shooting free throws. He just annoys me. Need I say more than that last sentence? Runner-Up: Bruce Bowen

PF: Dirk Nowizki (no, I didn't spell "Rasheed Wallace" wrong)
Nowitzki is another one of those guys that annoys me. Most of the bigs who shoot three pointers just seem unnatural to me. I just don't like Dirk. Again, need I say more? Runner-Up: Pau Gasol

C: Joakim Noah
I kinda feel bad for Noah. Because I'm not the only one in this boat. Dirty player, annoying hair . . . and not very good. Just annoying. Runner-Ups: N/A

All-Undervalued Team: Current
The underrated gems at each position that people have overlooked for a while. These guys can be role players or undercover stars, but they do more than people think they can.

PG: T.J. Ford
Ford isn't a big-time name in the NBA, and I'd say that he's known to about 70 percent of the casual fans. But he's doing the job without being known for it in Indiana, where Ford's averaging 15.1 points, 5.3 assists, 4.9 rebounds and a steal in just over 34 minutes per game. Who knew? Ford is not ranked where he should be on the point guard list (whoever's writing that), and I think he's in the top half in the NBA at his position. Definitely. Runner-Up: Rajon Rondo

SG: Joe Johnson
Leading the young Hawks to a presumable playoff spot isn't easy. They have Johnson in control of all that. He's the undercover all-star in Atlanta. He's averaging a superstar-like 23 points, 5.5 assists, 4.7 rebounds, 1.5 steals and 2.4 threes per game during the season so far, and he's an elite player. Is he recognized as one? The dude's definitely overlooked. If the Hawks keep all of this up, he shouldn't be for long. At least he deserves to not be. Runner-Up: Brandon Roy

SF: Hedo Turkoglu
Turkoglu gives Orlando what they need: a baller that has a diverse game and can do it all. They have passing in Jameer Nelson, three pointers in Rashard Lewis and a dominant big in Dwight Howard. Then they just need one player to tie them all together. Howard gets the spotlight for the Magic while Turkoglu is as steady as running molasses. This year he is averaging 16.9 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4 assists, 1.5 threes and 1.1 steals per game. All purpose. And undervalued. Runner-Up: Gerald Wallace

PF: David West
Chris Paul gets the headlines in N'Awlins. So does Peja Stojakovic, Tyson Chandler and, most recently, James Posey. West gets headlines and attention too, just not nearly enough. Despite being one of my favorite players, all biases are aside: West is an elite power forward. He hasn't even picked up his game yet this year, but he's still averaging a nice 19.8 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.1 assists. If the Hornets are going to win in the playoffs, West will be the key. Runner-Up: Paul Millsap

C: David Lee

Lee plays for the gawd-awful New York Knicks. Most likely, he knows that his team won't win. He knows that when he matches up against Kevin Garnett he doesn't have that much of a shot. At least he knows all this in his heart. But David Lee is the hardest worker in the NBA. He hustles back on defense. He hustles back on offense. Lee is a true workhorse, and demands your respect. As for being undervalued, try being undervalued by your team. 12.5 points, 8.3 rebounds, and 1.9 assists warrants more than 31 minutes per game. Wake up, Mike.

I'm all "All (blank) Team"d out right now. All of this is unedited, so pardon if I made a mistake in here. The mistakes can be related to grammar or something else like that. And if I made a basketball mistake, just know that I know the truth to it, OK :)? Tell me what you think, and maybe give me your teams down in the comments section as well. I got some serious writing coming up in the next week, so stay tuned. As always, I'm taking requests. Later, everyone.



Teddy-the-Bear said...

Yo Moose, whaddup? I haven't been reading on here in a while. That was really fun to read, actually, good job. You know, David Lee is starting to be one of my favorites right now, considering he's on my Knicks. I hope you'll be glad to hear, tonight he dropped 37 pts. and 21 rebs. The man can play. I'm glad you wrote about him.

Hursty said...

Yeh I can dig most of those choices. Hedo for undervalued though? Dude DID get M.I.P last year.

Moose said...

Thanks, guys. And Hursty, I put Hedo in there because his versatility is way underrated. I mean, the dude averages 16, 5 and 5, he plays good defense, and that part of him isn't recognized as much as it should be. I don't know, I just think that he doesn't really get the kinda recognition as he should be getting, despite winning the M.I.P. award last year.


Hursty? How do i post stuff, i want to write a article before church

Moose said...

BET, you need an official invite from DP. And wait a bit, I just posted this last night, aight?

Moose said...

My All-Ugly Team: Current

PG: Sam Cassel
SG: Kyle Korver (yes, he's a guard too)
SF: Shane Battier
PF: Charlie Villanueva
C: Andrew Bogut

Hursty said...

Pretty tight to pay out a guy with a permanent skin/hair disease Moose. (CV).
How can Robert Swift NOT be on that list?!

Moose said...

I didn't know about Villanueva's condition. Wow, I feel like a jerk. Sorry about that, didn't mean to. Good point with Swift, Hursty.

Roy said...

Yo Moose. Great stuff here as always. Putting together the likes MJ, Doc J, and Magic for the old-school team line up is just cool. That would be a dream come true. You made some good points on the players mentioned especially the hated ones. Great work. :D

Hursty said...

Moose, Money (Jordan) is not the perfect role model/idol off the court that everyone seems to want to believe. He gambled, was compulsive and somewhat egotistical. He abused his teammates frequently and had a fierce temper towards those he disliked.
I know that, as you grow older, you'll read more (more than slam or espn anyways) widely on athletes and their profiles. I don't mean '7 seconds or Less' or 'Can I Keep My Jersey' either.
I mean 'The Last Season', 'The Jump', 'When Nothing Else Matters (Jordan with the Wizards).
Those books are more than a highlight reel of achievements, acolades and awards. They go deeper, and although some are biased in their approach- the honesty and mulit-dimensional character they lend to the players is refreshing.
Get educated on role models young fella. Grant Hill, David Robinson. Steve Nash, Dikembe Mutumbo, Manute Bol, Charlie Villanueva.
Those fellas should be your off court role models.
PS- There was more than one reason Jordan was called Money.

Hursty said...

Please note: I'm not attacking you here. Your words however... they need... editing. Jordan was almost flawless offensively and defensively he was very very good. Off the court however, dude had flaws like a sky scraper- just like 99% of nba players....and 99% of the world population to boot.

Moose said...

Got it, Hursty. Some editing was done. Thanks for your input. And just for the record, D-Rob has always been one of my role models on and off the court. But thanks for the other guys, I'll learn more about them off the court.

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