Sunday, 27 March 2011


By way of Bynum


Los Angeles Laker's talks to reporters during the media day at the Lakers training facility in El Segundo, Ca., on September 25, 2010 (UPI Photo/Lori Shepler) Photo via Newscom


Against the Memphis Grizzlies, Andrew Bynum collides with teammate Lamar Odom and injures his left kneecap, forcing him out for the remainder of the season.


Against the Memphis Grizzlies once again, Andrew Bynum injures his right knee after team-mate Kobe Bryant landed on it, forcing him out for many vital months of the season.


During the playoffs Andrew Bynum plays every single game even with a torn meniscus, teammate Pau Gasol recognises Bynum's great sacrifice. The Los Angeles Lakers and their centre win their second NBA Championship in as many a season.


'Starting at Centre for the Los Angeles lakers, number 17, Andreeeeeeeeeeew Bynuuuuuuuuuuuuuuum'.

Picture the scene, imagine the game. The details? They don't matter, because he's here and back for good. Andrew Bynum is more then the Lakers centre, he's their centre of attention. The man in the post who delivers game after game like he was Karl Malone. Dobermans don't bark at this mailman however, they just bring him the ball, night after night as this 21st century, second generation Laker team guard their house like the champions they are.

Over the past few years the Lakers haven't lived or died by Andrew Bynum and his injuries, but their development and their stronghold on the the association of National Basketball has rested on those awkward knees of their number 17. With Pau in the post and tall enough to go centre, plus sixth man of the year candidate Lamar Odom being a true starter the Lakers can cope without 'Drew. Still however, with him their just a much stronger team. Take the last couple of games for example. The Lakers won without Bynum up front, but they can't go the long haul without him. That's why the Lakers always worried en route to the postseason that missing Andrew may be fatal elimination for the playoffs.

Jun. 09, 2010 - Boston, MASSACHUSETTS, UNITED STATES - epa02194140 Los Angeles Lakers' Andrew Bynum responds to questions during a press conference after team practice at TD Gardens in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, 09 June 2010. The Lakers lead the series over the Boston Celtics 2-1 in a best of seven games NBA Finals.

At least it was refreshing that Andrew missed the last two games due to suspension and not injury. After taking down Michael Beasley with a tough, flagrant foul, Bynum earned himself two games in a suit and tie but at least his jersey wasn't clothes lined this time. See-not to jinx things-but despite the time he's missed this year from his World Cup hangover Bynum seems his healthy and best ever. Even if he has worse knees then Brandon Roy, the tough, more-than-just-dependable centre is a trailblazer ready to help take down Portland, Dallas, Oklahoma, San Antonio and whatever city from the Eastern part of the United States dares to stand in him and his teams way.

As long as Bynum doesn't go down on one knee, his reigning champion Lakers look engaged with Larry O'Brien, resulting in a matrimony of contention and a three year anniversary of championship marriage. The Lakers obviously have more fire power then the 7 feet, 285 Bynum, but this former number 10 draft pick looks like the number one reason the Lakers could run towards a three-peat in a breeze. In around half a decade Bynum has turned potential into promise and promise into prominence. Plus at 23, this kid still has a decade-plus left to realise his long as his knees don't cap his time on the pine.

Right now the Lakers have a complete team of top-tier talent. From Kobe, to Pau, to Lamar, to Ron, to Derek, to the bench and of course Andrew. Inside and out, offence to defence the Lakers can keep up with anybody. They have all the elements and of course they need them with the fire of 'Bron and all his superfriends and the ice of 'Melo and his new pals. Not to mention rivals San Antonio and Boston, and former final foes Orlando. The NBA title is wide open this year as the top teams narrow themselves from the rest of the league by getting greater in talent. The Lakers may rest on Bryant, but just like they need Gasol's versatility, Odom's substitution, Ron's defence, Fisher's clutch and the benches spark they need Andrew Bynum's inside knowledge to boot.

Apr 21, 2009 - Los Angeles, California, USA - NBA Basketball: Laker ANDREW BYNUM #17 drives to the basket past Jazz's Jarron Collins #31 in the first half during game two of a first round Western Conference playoff basketball game between the Utah Jazz and the Los Angeles Lakers at the Staples Center on Tuesday April 21, 2009 in Los Angeles Photo via Newscom

With his ability to dish, dunk, post up and hook, 'Drew's got all the offence skills to draw more then a double-team and open up the floor. With his handles too, Andrew crashes the boards, helping the Lakers dominate possessions. This really is why the centre is the biggest player on the floor. Sure this team is still Kobe's and then Pau's, but a lot of the Lakers plays-on both ends of the floor-go through 'Drew. Bynum's averaged of 11.5 points and 9 rebounds don't do what he does on the floor justice. He can drop plenty of 20 and 10's on any given Sunday, Monday or Tuesday like his name was Kevin Love, making his games a double, like fans ordering beers in the stands. His career highs of 42 points and twice-over 18 rebounds more then make up the type of player he could become. Alos with an average of 5.8 defensive rebounds if he improves that 3.2 offensive line who knows what else he can draw out. While his box-score, statistical averages of 1 assist and 2 blocks really show the potential he has on affecting other areas of the game. Especially as his health improves and his 27.2 minute a game average is boosted to that of the numbers of a franchise player. A franchise player that he's about to become.

Right now Bynum and his tall-tandem with Gasol helps the Lakers keep up with the Duncan's, Griffin's and Perkins out West and the Bosh's, Stoudemire's and Garnett's of the rest of the contenders, but who knows just how much Andrew could dominate players like this in years time, on his own. Lakers fans will have to admit-that even though it won't be for awhile yet-Kobe will, one day retire and other stars production and prime will decline. Still, through all this Andrew Bynum won't get much older, but he will get significantly better. Sure he's not ready to put up Wilt numbers but even with the way he's playing right now Bynum could go down in history as one of the greatest Laker big men of all-time and there's been a lot of them. Kareem has even brought the Magic out this young centre tutoring 'Drew, helping this young mans potential scrape the sky like the rest of the bigs. Jabbar even gave 'Drew a nice baby-hook with Cap's playing mindset to match.

Jun. 08, 2010 - Boston, MASSACHUSETTS, UNITED STATES - epa02192920 Los Angeles Lakers' Andrew Bynum (R) goes to the basket for two points as Boston Celtics' Kendrick Perkins defends during the first half of game three of the NBA Finals at TD Gardens in Boston, Massachusetts, USA, 08 June 2010. The series is even at 1-1 for the best of seven games.

This youngest player ever in the NBA has overcame Jermaine and is the next big thing to O'Neal...Shaquille that is. He even withstood a Shaq attack, by coming back with his own elbow in his 'fro riding rookie season. You know the only man that eased the Lakers pains and worries of losing O'Neal was Andrew. Bynum isn't just a welcome relief for the Lakers from the years of Kwame Brown and Chris Mihm (no offence to their talents and services) he's one of the few, true centres left in a league where this position has become a dying breed since the late 90's. Still, even with the development of more centrally minded guys Bynum has freshened up his raw talent. Even if all of the 30 teams in the league had centre's who more resembled Greg Oden's (talking about knees) then Luc Longley's, Bynum would still be among the best, making more centres gravitate towards the power forward position then they do now. Bottom line this top big man could be one of the best in the league-if not all-time-when his career is done...period.

Since the All-Star break the Lakers have won all but one game and are on a streak that is making them look more like the deserved, reigning champions that they are and this has so much to do with a guy who should have been an easy vote for the All-Star this year. Still, it's easy for a quiet, well-mannered guy like Bynum to be lost in the galaxy of stars out in L.A. See it goes beyond the Kobe's, Spanish, reality and hip-hop stars and the players wives sitting courtside. There's also a throng of music, movie and other sports stars that lace the STAPLES Centre night after night, from Jack Nicholson to Justin Bieber. Still they all see Bynum and what they look at is more then just a star in the making. They look at the man that's going to take this Lake Shows legacy to new heights even when number 8 or number 24 is raised to the rafters with the greats.

Right now too Bynum is the difference maker between contention and condolence. Just think years ago the Lakers almost 'shipped him out' for a point guard. Trade him these days? You must be kidding! There will be no Jason for this Argonaut. Argonaut in the sense that he touches everything-from rebounds to points-like had had the arms of an Octopus, inking championships and tattooing his legend. As the Lakers get ready to clash with the titans they need their front-court God, their saviour. The man who's about to help engrave the latest chapter of Laker legacy in stone with yet another 'chip.

Friday, 25 March 2011


Dallas Mavericks Dirk Nowitzki points to a teammate after scoring 2 points in the third quarter against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden in New York City on January 24, 2010. The Mavericks defeated the Knicks by 50 points 128-78. UPI/John Angelillo

24. Before we start today's 'Through The Wire' and the last one for a fortnight we must apologise to the Minnesota Timberwolves organisation and their great fans, you aint going to like today's edition. First off the T-Wolves found themselves up against a group of Mavericks as Dallas beat them 104-96. Kevin Love was forced to sit out with injury, (more on that next) which allowed the Mavs Dirk Nowitzki to take over with 30 points and 11 rebounds. These 11 rebounds helped make 11 straight years of 50 plus wins. This was helped by Jason Terry's 18, Shawn Marion's 17 and Peja Stojakovic's 16 points. Still without Love, Minnesota got a lot of heart from replacement Anthony Randolph who had a career-high 31 points with 11 rebounds (told you he was good). Love's injury could be a blessing in disguise in one way as this rising star (who was out of New York's heavy rotation) will get his chance to shine. Still last night it was all Dallas like J.R. Minnesota will have to wait next season for their next shot.

48. Minnesota will have to wait until next season for their next shot in more ways then one as it looks like their All-Star, 20 and 15 forward is done. Timberwolves coach Kurt Rambis says there's a chance that Kevin Love could miss the rest of the season with his groin injury. Love strained his left groin in a loss against Sacramento and the next time he plays the Kings may be named the Anaheim Royals. "There is an outside chance, I don't know how great that chance is," Rambis said about the prospect of playing their last 10 games with no Love like Eminem and Lil' Wayne. "Obviously, with hamstring or groin injuries, you want to be cautious with them because they can linger for a long period of time, and we don't want that to happen with Kevin," the former Laker forward added. Anthony Randolph has been starting and career-highing in Kevin's place but still this young, developing team who are making a mark on this season will hope there is no Love lost.

82. Sorry T-Wolves, but at least the Bobcats injury troubles seem to be over. Charlotte can breathe a 'whoo' of relief as Stephen Jackson seems to be OK. An MRI exam came back with positives, showing no tear in his left hamstring of the teams top scorer. Still he's not out the woods yet. The hamstring has been bothering him for a month or so as he has missed four games and all his shots in his last game against former team Indiana, hey even top scorers have their off nights with injury. Bobcats, forward Tyrus Thomas is also day to day with a rib injury picked up in the same game. Charlotte will need these 'Cats against Boston today, missing Jackson's 'whoo' and Thomas' force.

O.T. Yet more injuries are occurring to key players as the Suns Mickael Pietrus injured his knee against the Raptors. Phoenix will hope it's nothing serious for this key role player...Forget about the MVP talk for a second. Who's your pick for 'Most Improved'. Well log on to because they're going with the Mavs Tyson Chandler and they may just be on to something...the Chicago Bulls aren't just doing great things on the court there doing more great things off it, teaming up with Harris Bank to celebrate the Adopt-A-School Program with a local winning school, good on them and congratulations to the school...NBA legend Jerry West's opinion on the Carmelo trade is leaned more towards the notion of don't weigh in just yet. Now let's all give it time, I mean look at Miami. See y'all in a fortnight, maybe we'll have a better idea then. TIM DAVID HARVEY.

Thursday, 24 March 2011


In the latest of our 'LAKERS LEGACY' series we look at Rick Fox, who's defensive trap set off the three-peat.

By Tim David Harvey

Who says the only way you make a mark on a basketball game is on the box-score? Who says championship role players are just average guys catching a lucky break and the coat-tails of a superstar? To those, take a look at the basketball career of Rick Fox and say that again. Lost for words? That's because like the opponents he faced, one-on-one you got nothing on Rick.

Rick had it all, offence, defence and X and O's. Sure he was no superstar, but he embraced his role and that's what made him the star of all role players. He could score 20 on his night, but at the same still make an impact on the boards and opposite end of the court, even if registering a zero like he was a DNP-CD. This coaches favourite hero could steal, block, dish and score in all sort of ways. From dunks, lay-ups to treys Rick found his shot, all because he could find himself on the floor. Fox went to the Magic Johnson, Laker legend school of knowing the floor and Rick knew his like a team leader. No wonder he was such a positive influence. His hard work and hustle however was his bread and butter. His passion allowed him to be a potent force on the court.

Sure in the early 2000's, three-peat Lakers, Shaquille O'Neal and Kobe Bryant may have had the stardom and Derek Fisher and Robert Horry the big shot fame, but that didn't leave Fox out the limelight. Were not talking about this double-threats Hollywood career either because beyond 'He Got Game', 'Blue Chips' and 'One Tree Hill' this was no act, Rick could play. Even when Payton and Malone arrived Rick was no fifth Beatle. He was a significant other like Vanessa Williams or Eliza Dushku. Right before Bynum became 17, the original number 17 Laker was putting up numbers and other fundamentals that went beyond statistics but could be measured by the sweat in his jersey and the ice water in his veins.

Maybe it was this Canadians upbringing in the terrific city of Toronto that made him able to withstand anything or anyone, whatever the weather. This maple syrupy, smooth class act was all smiles off-court but not afraid to shed the 'Mr. Nice Guy' persona when it came to the crunch time of any game, big or small. Fox sent opponents due south, the Lakers had to thank him kindly. Maybe it was the tar he picked up on his heels as part of a legendary North Carolinian alumni that made him such a professional, or maybe it was his time at Boston that made him tougher and stronger then Irish whiskey. After being drafted by the Celtics in the early 90's Fox not only learnt from the best, he was next. The Lake Showtime of the 80's and the Lakers of now could have sure used and used the tough mettle of a guy like Rick.

Ask anybody, especially in Sacramento about how frustrated Rick's tough, no-b.s. play made them. Rick was willing to get his hands dirty, but he always did what it took to help his team and he was always fair as fair, by champion standards. You see Rick's harassing, restraining-order defence was the Lakers x-factor along with Phil Jackson's zen, Horry's clutch, Fishers streak, Shaq's strength and everything about Kob's game. Fox's input went beyond his impressive, balanced 6.1 points per game, 2.6 rebounds, and 1.8 assists playoff averages or his 8,966 career points. Rick proved best outside of the stat-sheet for all he did and all the statistics and box-score showings he prevented for other teams. Namely, points, rebounds, assists etc. The things that make up a basketball game. Fox was on them and his opponents like white on rice.

Just ask Doug Christie who fought him or any other player how agitating and frustrating this play was. Even Peja paid the cost as Rick Fox was like Rick Ross, the boss, or like Springsteen with the shaggy hair, tougher then the rest. Rick owned his competition. Pushing, shoving, boxing out anybody and anything to prevent his opponent the ball, whilst helping his teammate get it. Rick was the ultimate team player, just for his team that is.

Rick riled so many people up that this Canadian should have played Ice-Hockey. Rick had the right mindset though. He belonged in the company of 80's greats that played hard and sent everyone on their way home. Greats that displayed a toughness that is seldom seen today. Greats like his former Celtics or the Bad Boy Pistons. It wasn't until Motown had a renaissance that Fox and the Lakers met their match. Before that no one was close, as Fox got up, close and personnel with his man, wearing them down, on them like they where wearing Rick as a jacket. Taking another teams forward or off guard, off ball, off possession, off game and off the reservation.

He may 'Dance With The Stars' nowadays but a decade back he duelled with them. Shaq may have joked that Rick spent too long staring in the mirror but on reflection Rick was so dedicated to preening his game in a way that made the guy he was marking look bad. With his hairstyles and different looks, he may have appeared like the odd one out and his play may have been a little rough around the edges, but this Small forward was silky smooth like the Zohan. You didn't want to mess with him either. Fox left opponents and opposing crowds in fits with his triple threats like Jamie Foxx. From 2000 to 2003 he ensured the Lakers where winners. You want to attribute their success to someone other then the usual? Then blame it on Rick.

Fox hunting is illegal, but back in his day Rick stalked his prey and laid down the law (and not just in detective movie 'Resurrection'). He kept guard, stealing and reducing opponents numbers like their name was ENRON, reducing teams stock like it was Wall Street, all whilst remaining slick like Gordon Gekko and his Brylcreem hair, Pat Riley would have loved him in the 80's. Fox made everything gel together perfectly, a true Small Forward. Along with Shaq and Kobe's dominance and Horry and Fisher's clutch, Rick tied everything together like a Lebowski rug. He ensured that his opponents aggression would not stand next to his true grit defence and he had a few bullets in his gun to boot as well. Just ask the Spurs, Indiana or anyone who was victim of his silent but violently deadly clutch threes.

This Hollywood, Staples icon had a calm but clinically measured demeanour like actor Terrence Howard and his hard-work and hustle helped the Lakers flow to the championships. Rick was kind of like L.A's Ron Artest now (without the NBA stardom, but a more successful second career), acting up and stealing the ball and the show in all the Hollywood drama of the NBA playoffs. Fox was sly and cunning, sending opponents barking mad. He was more of a hound, cutting and drying the grey areas to make victory for the purple and gold black and white. Sure Fox's sneaker deal wasn't like say a LeBron's, but Rick's jersey was soaked in a type of champagne some never got to taste. Sure when Rick catches a game at STAPLES when he looks up he may not see his name in the rafters, but he still saw ticker tape and balloons fall down in a celebration he earned back in his day. Sure Kobe will always come before Fox, but true warriors are more then just the guy leading the charge, their the ones behind their leader 100%. That's what Rick Fox was going to battle in some of the NBA's greatest victories. This Canadian earned his stars and stripes, and the Lakers patriot's purple heart earned him championship gold. When the Lakers dynasty was written, Rick stuck to the script, his own one.


Unfortunately we start today with some sad news Barry Ackerley passed away early Monday morning after suffering a stroke. The legendary former owner of the legendary Seattle SuperSonics franchise was 76 years old. NBA Commissioner David Stern released a statement saying, "It is with great sadness that I learned today of the passing of my friend Barry Ackerley During Barry's 18-year ownership of the Seattle SuperSonics, he oversaw an extraordinary franchise that was seemingly always in the playoffs and often contending for an NBA championship. He was committed to building and maintaining a winning franchise and would settle for nothing less. On behalf of the NBA and its Board of Governors, I extend our condolences to Barry's wife Ginger, his sons Bill, Chris and Ted and his daughter Kim." Ackerley also gave the Sonics coach Nate McMillan who also released a statement of tribute. "I'm eternally grateful for the opportunity he gave me to work in the NBA for 15 years. The thing I'll remember most about Barry was the passion he had for his players, team and community. I'm sadden to learn of his passing and my thoughts and prayers go out to Mrs. Ackerley, the Ackerley family and all those who knew and loved him." We also extend our thoughts to his family and friends as we remember a great man.

More worrying news has emerged. Former Dallas Mavericks great, All-Star forward Mark Aguirre was taken to hospital after he collapsed at an athletic club in Dallas. Former Mavericks general manager Frank Zaccanelli told press that Aguirre blacked out on a treadmill due to a blood circulation problem, adding that "he's fine". Mark will remain in hospital for a few days for monitoring and we wish him well and hope everything is OK. The tough, dependable forward is a fighter for sure.

24/48/82. In other news it looks like Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Love is going to miss more then a couple of practices with this sore groin. The supreme Love will not travel on the Wolves two game road trip due to the injury. Kevin will rest as his team take on the West's best teams (not named San Antonio or L.A.) Dallas and Oklahoma. Of course the T-Wolves will miss the bulk of their box-score entries with Love's 20.3 points and 15.4 rebounds (the league best) per. Still, talented, versatile, rising forward Anthony Randolph will start in K's place offering a different dimension and a defensive mismatch that opponents will hate almost as much as playing Love.

O.T. The Nets have recalled rookie point guard Ben Uzoh from Springfield of the NBA Development League...the Celtics where mauled by the Memphis Grizzlies last night after they looked the wrong shade of green...the Spurs also got dealt with by the Mavericks thanks to Tyson Chandlers clutch basket...the Miami Heat motored past the Detroit Pistons thanks to the tag-team rally of Wade and Bosh...while Indiana not only beat Charlotte in their game, but in the playoff race, now these 'cats will have to claw their way up to keep up pace with the Pacers...finally add a first triple-double to Blake Griffin's impressive rookie resume as he led his L.A Clippers to victory in two overtime periods. TIM DAVID HARVEY.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011


Los Angeles Lakers forward Ron Artest celebrates with fans after he made the game winning basket in Game 5 of their Western Conference Final series against the Phoenix Suns at Staples Center in Los Angeles on May 27, 2010. The Lakers defeated the Suns 103-101. UPI Photo/Lori Shepler Photo via Newscom

(Looks familiar? Only the jersey is different)

24. GAME OF THE WEEK. Just when people where writing Ron Artest off and initialling it he rose like a Phoenix to burn the Suns like it was last years playoffs, kisses and all. The Lakers beat the Suns 139-137 in four quarters and three thrilling overtimes like they where the Nets and Raptors duelling in London. Both temas wore the 'Los' jerseys that the Suns made a huge statement with last season. Still with all this 'Los', the Los Angeles Lakers won. At one point the Lakers where in party mode, looking like they where going to blowout the Suns by 21, but Phoenix soon burnt those candles. Still once the 51-20 Lakers prevailed they made it a lucky 13 wins out of the last 14 games. Kobe had 42 points, 12 rebounds and 9 assists and Lamar had 29 and 16 rebounds sinking Phoenix in a game that lasted longer then the 'Titanic' movie. Ronny however was huge in overtime and finished with 18 points on the clip. His huge overtime 3-pointer (you know he can shoot those in the clutch now Phil) was good unlike the last time he shot a crucial 3 against the Suns in a big game as he blew kisses to the crowd just like he did against Boston in Game 7 of last years finals. As the game went through two more overtimes however the Lake Show would need more players to act up and Pau Gasol was clutch from the free-throw line as he helped end the night of drama with the most nerve-wracking of shots. Speaking post-game Odom said of fellow New Yorker Ron Artest, "a basket in those situations are worth 20 points as far as what it does for the team. He made some big plays, especially sometimes when we get in that isolation with Kobe and (the other team) starts hanging off (us) and it's time for somebody to drive the ball and make a play. Ron is tough." Ron and the Lakers are clearly looking like champions again.

48. Derrick Rose and the Chicago Bulls also had a big night as they scraped the Hawks 114-81. Rose, a true point showed he could take the scoring load without being selfish with a stellar, MVP affirming 30 point and 10 rebound night. Rose flowered 6 of 8 3-balls and was just incredible in all areas as the Bulls avenged an early season loss to the Hawks and surged to the top of the Eastern Conference knocking off both Atlanta and in turn Boston. Luol Deng added 27 points telling press, "We're trying to do great things in the playoffs." At this rate the Bulls don't have to worry about this, there doing big things now.

82. Speaking of playoffs, the Portland Trailblazers made their case for the playoffs with a 111-76 win over the Washington Wizards. The rout was led by 28 points from Gerald Wallace the final piece of Portland's playoff puzzle, brought together at the trade deadline. Portland's balanced attack helped them defeat their opponent and tip the balance out West. LaMarcus Aldridge had 22 points while Nicolas Batum doubled up with 22 points and 12 rebounds. Portland where up as many as 38 points at one point and they did this without their top big man Marcus Camby who twisted his ankle against the Lakers at the weekend. Still it's nice that Camby got a day off on his 37th birthday. It was a special day for the Blazers too after scorching D.C. They have now justified themselves a higher position in the league of Western Conference playoff hopefuls. They are now within a game of the Denver Nuggets for the sixth seed, while a game up on seventh-placed New Orleans Hornets. This impressive Portland team will hope for many happy returns.

O.T. The Bobcats Stephen Jackson has tweaked his hamstring and is doubtful for their game against his former team the Indiana Pacers...after enhancing L.A.'s Andrew Bynums game, Laker legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar wants to work with Orlando's Dwight Howard...everyone may be pleased with Brook Lopez but it appears the same sentiment is not shared for his talented twin Robin Lopez. Suns coach Alvin Gentry is apparently disappointed with his post-man, but 24/48/82 reckons Gentry should be patient, Robin will deliver soon enough. TIM DAVID HARVEY


24. A Redd dawn is about to hit Milwaukee. The Bucks 3-point setter, Michael Redd is planning to return to action before the week is out on Friday. The star guard has missed a whopping 14 months with injury, but it was Back to regular work Tuesday as Redd partook in practice. "It was fun,'' Mike said talking about practice like Allen Iverson. "I've got to get into the rhythm of playing basketball. This is my training camp right here," added the star talking about his first five-on-five scrimmage since he went down over a year ago. Despite this Redd will not play in the Bucks battle against the Kings tomorrow, instead he'll suit up for his teams clash against the New York titans. With Milwaukee two games behind the Indiana Pacers for the last spot in the Eastern Conference they'll be glad to have their 3 point spotter back.

48. As one injury door opens however another closes. The NBA best San Antonio Spurs had some worse news recently as Tim Duncan was taken out with an ankle sprain. It's bad to see the T-Bot on crutches and it's clear he needs some TLC like T-Boz. The stars status won't be known 'till later this week, but things hope to be back to normal soon. Besides Timmy had a positive result on his MRI as there was no signs of structural damage. R.C. Buford told press, "we will have a better idea of what the timeline is in the next 48 hours.'' Duncan sprained his ankle against Golden State but this warrior hopes to lead his men to the top of the West. As soon as he's back from ankle injury, battle will commence.

82. Speaking of injury doors, this one is firmly shut. That's it for Rudy Gay this year. Following our news on the Memphis stars injury last week it is now evident today that Rudy will miss the rest of the season. Memphis will miss their grizzled star who requires shoulder surgery. The talented team will be burdened in his absence but they still have the talent (Randolph, Mayo, Gasol etc.) to carry the weight. Gay partially dislocated his shoulder against Philadelphia mid-February and has now missed 14 games so far. The Grizzlies are still in the playoff picture but without one of their best scorers it doesn't look good.

O.T. These new New York Knicks are going through some growing pains but they think they'll mature by the playoffs...Kevin Love's injured groin has kept him out of Minnesota's practices... Sacramento mayor and former NBA player Kevin Johnson reckons the Kings are done in his town, adding the franchises possible move to Anaheim "feels like a slow death". Man alive, say what you feel now and with that why don't you and hit up or comments section below. TIM DAVID HARVEY.

Sunday, 20 March 2011


Mar. 17, 2010: Chicago Bulls guard Jannero Pargo drives around the Dallas defense during an NBA game between the Chicago Bulls and the Dallas Mavericks at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, TX Dallas defeated Chicago 113-106.

24. If you didn't think the 'untouchable' Chicago Bulls could get any better, then you'd be wrong. Two more horns have been added to this animal in the form of two strong bench players. Two free-agent guards, one being John Lucas III who previously played two games this season in Chi-Town and the other being the talented veteran Jannero Pargo who is now in his fourth stint with the team. Like a couple constantly breaking up, maybe it's time now that Pargo and the Bulls stayed together, for the 'chips.

48. At least this time the Lakers lose Bynum it won't be to a knee injury. Andre will be suspended for two games following his flagrant, sack tackle, foul on Minnesota's Michael Beasley in their clash with his Lakers last week. The Lakers will face off against the two P's of the Western Conference, Portland and Phoenix without 'Drew. Bynum over the last 12 games has averaged 11.8 points, 13.0 rebounds and 2.6 blocked shots and this big Lakers player will be missed by the Lakers. Andrew on the other hand will miss around $250,000 from how wallet, with his no play, no pay suspension. "He made no play on the ball," Minneosta coach and former Laker Kurt Rambis said (a man no stranger to rough play). "It's unfortunate that things like that happen in basketball, but it was the right call. Michael is relatively lucky he didn't get more hurt than he did."

82. The Nets will also be without their biggest, newest contributer Deron Williams for three games. The new, New Jersey Net is delivering great promise to his team but has injured his wrist and now will miss some crucial games for his side. "It's something that we know: rest - not surgery - is required," Nets coach Avery Johnson said. Perhaps 'The Genral' could suit up and replace D-Will because you know he could still play and he spends most of his time as a coach stepping on to the court anyway. The Nets will play Washington, Indiana and Cleveland without Deron, not the toughest of clashes but then again New Jersey aren't the toughest of sides, especially without their new strong-hold. How long will this leave Jersey weak however? Well just ask Williams. "I hate sitting out." There's your answer.

O.T. There are more injuries and suspensions being reported that you would think this was 'Through The Transactions'...after throwing a ball at a ref, Phoenix Suns guard Aaron Brooks will be thrown out of one game...while Sacrmaneto rookie, DeMarcus Cousins is getting rough again, being ejected from a clash against Minnesota after shoving the T-Wolves' Martell Webster...speaking of 'Wolves, Kevin Love was left howling in the same game after excusing himself from it with a groin injury...the Heat's hot spot, reserve point guard, Mario Chalmers will miss around a fortnight, going cold with a sprained knee...while the Miami Heat will also pay service to former player Tim James by honoring his military service for the U.S Army. Let's hear it for Corporal James, what a hero. HOORAH!! TIM DAVID HARVEY.

Saturday, 19 March 2011


Where you at? The whole city behind them!

By Tim David Harvey

Our 'Contender' series gets into full swing looking at a real playoff promise.

Chicago Bulls forward Carlos Boozer takes a free throw during the first quarter against the Orlando Magic at the United Center in Chicago on December 1, 2010. UPI/Brian Kersey Photo via Newscom

The Chicago Bulls are the untouchables. The star gangs of the East may make the headlines like Al Capone, but the by the book-like Elliott Ness-Chicago Bulls are about to capture their bounty. These former contention refugees are our sleeper pick for the contender series. That is if you haven't already woken up and smelt the Eastern conference top spot. At 49 and 19, Chicago are one away from 50 like Lloyd Banks, next time they'll be even closer to the money like '95. Chicago are cooking, establishing the balance in the central division pole position. With a playoff berth and a division already clinched this team is stone cold and that's the bottom line. Other Eastern Conference teams may be wrestling with storied reputations and superstar status symbols, but right now the number one Chicago Bulls have the belt. Time to smarten up.

Sure Miami may have the talents of LeBron, Wade and Bosh and New York and Amar'e may have been Carmelo's final decision, but in this 'who wants to buy a millionaire' league the only thing touching these Chi-town Bulls is the Boston Celtics, the other complete, team based unit of stars. With these two popular and most recognisable franchises ruling and sharing the roost, (there's little between them, especially now that the Bulls eight game win streak has been snapped) it feels like somewhere between the 80's and the 90's again right now in the second decade of the new millennium.

Sure, everything goes through the reigning Eastern Conference champs, but these Baby Bulls are all grown up but still have the youth and the speed to keep up with the Rondo led band of Boston Celtics. Speaking of Rajon, Chicago have their own 'move- aside D-Will and CP3', association best point in Derrick Rose. Sure the one time underrated Rajon Rondo may now be the critics pick, but that doesn't mean that the mild-mannered Rose is right there with him in everybody's conscience and confidence. Besides Rose is in bloom and can shoot, score, muscle, bench-press and eat Rondo under the table on his best night. Or any player for that matter, as the MVP is always the best, right? This former Windy City number one draft pick is number one in the NBA, point proved. Just check D-Rose's thorn in Boston's side, two-handed emphatic flush that left many Celtic defenders in the toilet early this season. That two points was as passionate as any Kevin Garnett jersey tug or chest thump, with all it's elastic breaking heart.

Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah reacts after scoring against the Los Angeles Lakers during the third quarter at the United Center in Chicago on December 10, 2010. The Bulls won 88-84. UPI/Brian Kersey Photo via Newscom

When Rose brings the ball up court he's got more then his own shot to deal with however and this is why the multi-talented, versatile Chicago Bulls are leading the charge in an Eastern Conference full of promise. If you want to talk about heart then leading the stampede is Joakim Noah, the teams most vital organ and vocal leader. This guy has more heart then anybody, but as Jesus is my witness, believe me, he's got game like Ray Allen. A mental and physical presence, Joakim gifts the Bulls with size, hustle and hard-work. Noah's arc of talent also extends to the range on his shot. Still however, it's his energy plays, born from his impenetrable passion that gives his team the x-factor of heart that can only be matched by Boston and Garnett.

Chicago's other two co-captains anchor this ship too. Luol Deng, the former franchise man and top jersey seller is still on top of his game, Rose's or injury pricks aside. Deng is a pure scorer and prototype basketball player. The kind of guy that would have complimented Mike and Scottie like free peanuts. This guy could still see championships and plays still go through him however. He's that good, don't forget the Chicago Bulls version of Paul Pierce is the truth too. Get your facts straight, there's no need for debate.

Chicago Bulls forward Luol Deng (L) looks to drive as Orlando Magic forward Quentin Richardson defends during the third quarter at the United Center in Chicago on December 1, 2010. The Magic won 107-78. UPI/Brian Kersey Photo via Newscom

In the biggest, most ludicrous Summer of free-agent signings the Bulls big acquisition seemed as a minor statistic, but in reality the move was just as important as the Knicks acquisition of Amar'e Stoudemire. Sure Carlos' contract may not have made news like that of fellow ex-Cavalier-turned villain LeBron James. Still, it was still a chess move that gave the Bulls that extra space on the board, putting them ahead of their opponents. Checkmate. Game, set and match, Boozer is serving up the fundamentals. Now everyone outside the state of Illinois will have to deal with the hangover like Bradley Cooper, Booze's skill set with the pill is limitless and NBA approved. You seeing clearly?

The rest of the Bulls flock are more then Michael Rapaport and Ashton Kutcher look-a-likes. From the hard work and hustle of Brian Scalabrine to the 3-balls of Kyle Korver, these Chicago Bulls are deep. How deep? Deep enough to send their opponents to the abyss. Bogans has the buckets, Thomas the toughness (and that sweet, signature, regular like clockwork baseline J) and Rasul Butler is at your service, lining this team with his silver, shining multi-talents. That's not to forget serious, sophomore, success story Taj Gibson or Ronnie Brewer and the rest of this kettle of talent. Just like Scottie, the next time this franchise unveils a statue they may have to immortalise the whole team in bronze. Just ask iron Mike Jordan, he see's six more titles in the works for these new hard-mettle, next generation Bulls.

Mar. 25, 2010 - Chicago, ILLINOIS, UNITED STATES - epa02092908 Chicago Bulls forward Taj Gibson (C) is fouled by Miami Heat forward Udonis Haslem (L) as he tries to shoot over Miami Heat center Joel Anthon in the second quarter of their NBA basketball game at the United Center in Chicago Illinois, USA, 25 March 2010.

Sure the San Antonio Spurs are the best team in the league right now and the reigning champion Lakers are finally looking like the Lakers again, but in the East it's wide open like Central Park. No longer least, this beast of a conference has the green and the trees to best the West. Still amongst all the movers and shakers the Chicago Bulls are still here once again, as unified as their typical, trademark jerseys. Sure New Jersey are only going to get better, Boston are right there and nothing looks as good as the Heat and the Knicks right now, but the Bulls have substance and that's always worth more then style, shine or gloss. These Windy City storm troopers have the ability to breeze past opponents not just this year, but for seasons to come. No matter how many times the Orlando Magic learn new tricks. No matter how more fresher and more mature those former raw, young Atlanta Hawks get. From the ATL to the heaven and hell of the playoffs the Bulls will be clawing away with their hooves firmly in the game.

It may be time to play Alan Parson's 'Sirius' again during player introductions as this Tom Thibodeau project (great work by the way T.T.) sound like championship contenders more and more each day and game. Look for the Heat and Knicks rivalries to reboil and more as this team look to make their opponents see green when they play them and I'm not just talking on St. Patrick's Day. This team could assimilate the Boston Irish, just ask Scalabrine. This hot team is seeing red and have smelt the blood of their rivals, it's time to dead the competition. Now which matador dares to take this herd by the horns? You have been warned. This bulls-eye is targeting a championship. As this contender takes aim and charges, you better run for cover.

Friday, 18 March 2011


LAS VEGAS - FEBRUARY 17: Scottie Pippen of the Chicago team celebrates after sinking a half-court shot in the Haier Shooting Stars Competition during NBA All-Star Weekend on February 17, 2007 at Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, user is consenting to the term and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

24. Scottie Pippen will join Michael Jordan at the United Centre once again. No this isn't a dream come true or some video game scenario, instead Scottie will be immortalised in bronze as a bust of him will be unveiled during halftime of next months hosting of fellow Eastern Conference leader, the Boston Celtics. Pip, who was inducted into the NBA Hall Of Fame last year will give a speech and will also be honored in a video tribute on April 7th. The bust comes from the makers of Michael Jordan's statue and although it may not be as big as a dedication as His Airness but it's about time the franchise honored their second best player in history.

48. These current Baby Bulls will hope to impress with more of the same as last night Chicago beat New Jersey, 84-73, winning their eighth straight. Derrick Rose led the stampede with 21 points in these surging Bulls longest winning streak in six years. Chicago are the leagues second best defensive outfit and Rose dressed to impress, making clutch plays on the defensive and offensive end as the Bulls held the improving Jersey boys to a season low in points. The Bulls matched their balanced roster with a balanced attack, Luol Deng had 19 points, while Kyle Korver punked the Nets with 12 basket cases off the bench. Things are looking up for this untouchable Chi-town side but the team remains humble, "We know we still have a long way to go," Deng said. Looks like the Bulls are staring towards the long charge.

82. LeBron James is taking his talents to D.C. Don't worry he isn't on the move again and hopefully this is the last time that overused pun will be used. James is showing the NBA really does care (here I go again with more puns) by helping in the start of '26 Seconds', a new stay in school initiative. 26 seconds according to research is how often someone drops out of school in the United States. The project is sponsored by 'Bron's business partner, State Farm. "First of all, '26 Seconds' is basically an initiative behind kids staying in school," the Miami star said on legendary Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski's weekly show on SiriusXM. LeBron who is dedicated to his cause also told Coach K, "Kids with no education is not how it should be. Every kid should have the opportunity to have an education and we're going to make sure we pinpoint those certain situations in whatever community it is to make it a huge awareness in people's lives." Raising his game off the floor, LeBron is making all the right moves. Let's hope enough people witness this decision.

O.T. One of the NBA's best and most underrated players, LeMarcus Aldridge continued his hot streak by helping his Portland side blaze the Cavaliers with a have reported that Michael Redd is about to return from injury. Click on their website to check their take on the uncertainties surrounding the stars return. With Bogut, Jennings and more, the Bucks have a great team, but where will Redd fit in? guy who won't be back until his team returns from the road is the Golden State Warriors' Biedrins who will be on the teams no-fly list with an ankle injury...more from Chicago, if your interested in more appearances from the old legends, in between witnessing the new ones in Bull town, former champs, Armstrong, King and Wennington will greet fans at Chicago's Best Buy in conjunction with the 20th anniversary release of the "Red Reign" DVD. Can you believe it's been that long? Make sure you don't leave it too late if your in that area and want a signed piece of history...and with that BASKETBALL 24/48/82's 'Through The Wire' is signing off for the week. Join us next Monday for more news. Have a great weekend. TIM DAVID HARVEY.


Oct 19, 2010; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings guards Beno Udrih (19), left, and Tyreke Evans (13) during the game against the Los Angeles Clippers at the Staples Center. The Kings defeated the Clippers 96-94. Photo via Newscom

24. The Orange County Royals? How about the Los Angeles Royals? Or even the Anaheim Royals? Get used to one as it's looking more and more likely that as of next year the Sacramento Kings will be no more. The Kings look to be the third team in Southern California as of next season as they also look to drop the 'Kings' mantra and go back to the 'Royals' one that they had when they where in Cincinnati and Rochester. Perhaps they where tired of Shaq et al calling them the queens. Last month Sacramento filed a motion with the NBA last month to secure a possible move to Anaheim and possible names may include the Anaheim Royals, or the Anaheim Royals of Southern California (strange but cool), Orange County Royals and the L.A. Royals. Surely not L.A. though? Los Angeles isn't big enough for two franchises, let alone the Lakers rivals, it sure would make things interesting however. My favourite is Orange County, no doubt, can't wait for the uniforms.

48. If the new look Utah Jazz look to go far this season they will have to do it without their old favourite and mainstay Mehmet Okur. The big man who's also an outside threat will sit out for the rest of the regular season. He is riddled with injuries to his lower back and Achilles' tendon, it's best Okur rests but Mehmet is "discouraged and disappointed that he won't be able to help the Jazz as they try to get back in the playoff race", according to the teams general manager. There's a small chance that Okur may return if the Jazz make the playoffs, but that's an even smaller chance. All joking aside with a fresh core of Devin Harris, Derrick Favors, Al Jefferson, Paul Milisap and Okur the Jazz sound like a good contender for next year.

82. Blake Griffin may be the one having a monster year, but Dwight Howard had his own beyond human performance last night as superman turned out a heroic performance. With 31 points and 22 rebounds Howard helped the Magic cast their playoff berth, with a secure seed and qualification. Following the 93-89 win the Magic won't have to worry about the postseason apart from keeping hold of their spot and making some improvements. As last night the Magic had 19 slight of hands, as they lost and turned over the ball too many times. "We did about everything wrong we could do," Orlando's coach Stan Van Gundy told press post-game. The team also didn't make many free-throws but charity stripe bricklayer , Dwight said "The only thing that matters is we got a win. Are we satisfied with the way we won the game? No, but we won the game. That's all that matters," the team leader added setting an example for the areas they need to improve on. As long as this Magic learns some new tricks this young team will be able up with the old dogs.

O.T. Speaking of the future looking bright for the new-look Utah how about C.J. Miles and his career-high 40 points in the Jazz's win against Minnesota. Looks like this new starter has earned his prominent place in the can't keep Basketball and England apart right now. Following a successful first-ever regular season game and before the 2012 Olympics the runners up of the WNBA last season, the Atlanta Dream will play the female Team GB in Manchester this May. Looks like this will be a tune up game, for Atlanta, get ready for Team GB to have a nightmare...the Denver Nuggets aren't mellowing out without Carmelo. Thanks to Nene and J.R. Smith the team struck gold, clawing away a victory from the Hawks...after losing out on the Eastern top spot to Chicago the Boston Celtics have regained their share of the number one seed in the East by beating Indiana...Thanks to a late rally Dallas won their battle against the Golden State Warriors...while the Sun slipped to four burns in a row after failing to maintain a buzz against the New Orleans Hornets....Detroit ended their losing streak and started a winning one against Toronto thanks to Richard Hamilton's 24 and Greg Monroe's 21 points...Kevin Martin's 21 points kept the Houston Rockets past the Charlotte Bobcats for their entire match-up, as did the matching of Chuck Hayes season high 17 rebounds...Elton Brand had 19 points and 12 rebounds as he led his Philadelphia 76ers team over his old Los Angeles Clippers...while things are looking up for Cleveland as Cavalier Ramon Sessions hit the high-notes with 20 points as the Cavs beat the Anaheim Royals, excuse me the Sacramento Kings in a rare win on the road on the soon to be no more ARCO Arena. Perhaps this finished team needs more cowbell. Time to up the prescription. TIM DAVID HARVEY.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011


March 14, 2010 Milwaukee, WI. Bradley Center..Indiana Pacers Solomon Jones and Danny Granger box out Bucks Andrew Bogut for the rebound..Milwaukee Buck won over the Indiana Pacers 98-94. Mike McGinnis/CSM.

24. Danny Granger missed playing against the New York Knicks for his Indiana Pacers due to a strep throat but in last nights rematch he didn't choke as he did his best Reggie Miller impression. With 0.3 seconds left he finished his 26 points off with a game winner to make it 2 and 0 for Indiana against New York, who are keeping up pace to be the Knicks bogey team once again. Former college standout Tyler Hansbrough also stood proud as he best his Sunday career-high 29 points against N.Y. with 30 last night. "I love New York, but I just happen to play good against them," the former Tar-Heel remarked. Anthony has 29 points but that couldn't mellow the Pacers flow.

48. Bloggers beware. Watch what you say, or tweet for that matter. A referee in the NBA is suing The Associated Press and one of its sports writers over a comment on Twitter. This federal lawsuit is stemming from a comment suggesting that the ref intentionally made a bad call against the Houston Rockets to amend a prior bad call that went against the Minnesota Timberwolves. Veteran black and white, William Spooner claims that writer Jon Krawczynski defamed him in the Twitter message. The alleged tweet said, "Ref Bill Spooner told Rambis he'd 'get it back' after a bad call. Then he made an even worse call on Rockets. That's NBA officiating folks." Following the Rockets 129-125 win Spooner is arguing Krawczynski's comments are hurting his reputation, he is seeking damages and a removal of the Internet posting. The NBA issue this statement, "We investigated the content of the tweet when it appeared, found it to be without substance, and informed Mr. Spooner that we considered the matter closed. We subsequently advised Mr. Spooner's lawyer that we did not think suing a journalist over an incorrect tweet would be productive. Nevertheless, Mr. Spooner and his lawyer decided to commence this litigation and any future inquiries should be directed to Mr. Spooner's lawyer." The case continues.

82. Injuries are what make this league go round, or not it would seem. Out in the ATL All-Star center Al Horford will return for the Atlanta Hawks after a sore ankle made him sit for the teams last game against the Portland Trail Blazers. He returns against Milwaukee for a game itself that is returning after an ice-storm postponed it earlier this season. Horford may be taken off ice but Houston Rockets guard Terrence Williams will be on the chilling list for around a week after having minor surgery in order to relieve lower abdominal distress. The talented bench player was acquired from New Jersey late last season and is averaging 5 points and 2.4 rebounds.

O.T. The Chicago Bulls seventh straight win has sealed them the sole top spot in the Eastern Conference...thanks to Aldrige's 30 points the Blazers ensured the Mavs trailed...Joe Johnson strapped on a head-band and put down 36 points as the Haws proved they where a stronger animal then the Bucks...the rising Nets are sending Ben Uzoh to the Development League But promoting Dan Lefton to executive director of ticket sales at the their new Barclay's Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. as the team look to advance even more...with March Madness in full swing for NCAA College Basketball, LeBron is predicting that Ohio State will be the only team left standing come April. TIM DAVID HARVEY.

Tuesday, 15 March 2011


Los Angeles Clippers' Rudy Gay, finalist for the 2010 USA Men's World Championship team, looks up at his coach during practice in New York August 10, 2010. REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

24. Memphis are still in grizzly times without their go to star, Rudy Gay. Happy days will have to wait until his return. An MRI yesterday showed that Rudy's injured shoulder is healing but there is no timetable for his return. The team released this statement, "underwent a follow-up magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) today on his left shoulder, which revealed that while the shoulder is healing from a subluxation, it needs more time to fully recover," while Gay tweeted 'I hate bad news". Rudy has missed 10 games and Memphis has missed his 19.8 points per. With the last playoff spot out West, if the Grizzlies want to make the playoffs and go far, it will rest on the rehabbing shoulders of their main man.

48. Superteams may be en vogue in the NBA right now but it's the more established sides that are sitting atop the standings. Following the loss to the New Jersey Nets (an aspiring superteam) the Boston Celtics are tied for the first seed in the East with sleeper contender, Chicago. In another Meadowlands sell-out, the nets twanged their Atlantic neighbours. The centre that demands more attention Brook Lopez scored 20 points, while Deron Williams hit 16 and made a clutch winning 3-pointer. Make that five straight now for this new-look, new-improved Jersey team who now own the franchises best streak in three years. "Five in a row, it's definitely something we haven't done this year, so it says something," tough, reliable forward Kris Humphries added with 16 points and 15 rebounds, Kim Kardashian's boyfriend has plenty to smile about. Kris bodied up Celtic Kevin Garnett well and K.G. had nothing but love for his opponent, telling press, "D-Will, he's come over here and gave them sort of like a winning mentality, seems to be working for them. Kris is playing really well for them, Brook is playing really well. They have players that are playing really well, just they're trying to put it together it seems like." Nobody knows this more personally then Williams who added, "I think we are playing good right now, we are gelling pretty well, having such a short time together. We're having fun." Looks like the Nets are ready to climb the standings too.

82. The show really is going on for the Lakers,as they won their 10th game in 11 by casting a 97-84 spell on the Orlando Magic. Kobe had 16 on a sprained ankle, while Pau made up for this Achilles heel with 23 points. Andrew Bynum continued to stuff the box score with stats as he had a career high-tying 18 rebounds to go with 10 points to make his round two doubles. Showing that their staple of basketball really is at home the Lakers won their seventh-straight game at the STAPLES Centre since the All-Star game was held their mid-February. Howard had 22 points, 15 rebounds but 9 turnovers which was almost half more then the entire Lakers squad totals. The Lake Show limited their injured stars minutes but players like Lamar Odom (16 points) and Derek Fisher (15) recovered the scoring load. This well-balanced attack made sure Orlando tripped up on their road journey.

O.T. Kendrick Perkins who recently blasted, Pau Gasol (calling him 'soft'), Phil Jackson (calling him 'arrogant')and the Lakers had 9 rebounds in his Thunderous, Oklahoma debut...Houston have ended their six game losing problem by burning the Suns...the New Orleans Hornets are to receive subsidies payments from the state of Louisiana, paying them $7 million in subsidies if the franchise doesn't meet certain annual revenue benchmarks...meanwhile the Hornets couldn't meet the sting of Denver losing to the Nuggets... Andrei Kirilenko hit seven points in overtime as his 16 helped his Utah over Philly..and the Kings beat the Golden State Warriors in the possible final ever meeting in Sacramento between the two California teams as Sacto ponder a move next season to Anaheim. TIM DAVID HARVEY.

Monday, 14 March 2011


K. Love's lock down game.

By Tim David Harvey

"I always laugh when people ask me about rebounding techniques. I've got a technique. It's called just go get the damn ball." Charles Barkley.

Part 1: Acknowledgment

Love is...

One of the best players in the league right now and one of the best rebounders you've ever seen...FACT! Critics tried to call him fat, but he rounded out into a great basketball player, kind of like the mould of rebounding mound Chuck Barkley. You see Charles will tell you all day and night long on T.V., but that doesn't mean you'll tune in and listen. This won't stop Love running a power move on you however, NBA Public Enemy or number one. Sure in the ever growing and developing young talent in the game, who would blame you if you preferred Blake's monster dunks or Wall's zig, zag speed? Still technically speaking Kevin Love's Venus fly trap, off the rim grabs are just as important.

Between dunks and cross-overs you may not see one of basketball's most important possession's but Kevin's vision is 30-30 in hindsight and 20 and 10 when he's sleeping. His recent snapped, statistical, straight stilts where seasons away from wilting Chamberlain's mythological record of consecutive double-double games but only two games away from smoking the recognised record of Elvin Hayes (55 straight). 53 straight and two away from being the closest thing to Chamberlain like Kareem. Now that really is big. You hooked yet?

Part 2: Resolution

Love is...

A basketball revolution, a regular guy with a super size game. It's 2011, a new year and a new game. It's time for a different perspective. This double, double threat is a franchise promise, beyond the great fantasy numbers. The reality is that if you where to start a team today, you could do with a lot of love. Sure he has no cross-over dribble, or Kobe first-step but no one in the league creates for himself like K. Heart. From being a classic Bruin to a timeless bruiser, this guy is tougher then the rest like Springsteen with Run-DMC leather. Cleaning the glass and owning the ink with a tattooed permanence, Kevin is as tough, solid and competitive as Dennis Rodman.

Every team wants a 20 and 10 guy and Love is devoted to that when he phones in his performances. When all of his heart is beating however (which is damn near every game) he's a 20.8 and 15.8 boxer though, scoring big. Love is a statistical nightmare that opponents hate to play. Plus he's unselfish to boot. Think about it, with an average of 10 rebounds a game, you know that when it's on offence Kevin can find his own shot without offending his teammates (especially averaging 2.5 assists a game). Kev doesn't need plays ran for him he makes them himself. Now that's what gives you a 30 point, 30 rebound night. That is what makes you a star.

Part 3: Pursuance

Love is...

More then just after his own legend, he's here to build a better legacy. If you think his struggling Minnesota Timberwolves haven't had passion since Kevin Garnett was tossing chalk at monitors you'd be wrong. Real wrong. These 'Wolves are still howling even when they lose some serious howlers. This Minneapolis team are no laughing matter. These young Prince's along with teams like Charlotte and Memphis are part of the NBA's new power generation. A group of teams who may be overshadowed by the more storied and superteam franchises, but still are next in line.

The future if this team didn't leave with Al Jefferson, it beats on in the heart of Love. It's there in misunderstood, but mismatch nightmare Michael Beasley. It's in the boom of former bust Darko Milicic. It's in the multiple talents of Sebastian Telfair, Luke Ridnour and Anthony Randolph and Tolliver. It's in the British capital city, exclamation point, exhibition, preseason drubbing of the Los Angeles Lakers in London that really was significant. That overseas change of tide wasn't the only time the Timberwolves showed the Lakers that they had no place in Minneapolis, as Love and his Wolves tested the Lakers like they were the Oklahoma City Thunder. It's rich vein of forms like this is why this former poor mans outside contenders are playing with that cold as ice, snarling killer instinct. This animal has been wounded but now it's at it's most fierce. No longer lost in the woods, this team is in a twilight. It won't be long before their future is as bright as a full moon and you know that then their leader Kevin Love will no longer be standing in the shadows.

Part 4: Psalm

Love is...

So good that when it's all said and done they won't talk about his career, they'll sing and all the praise will be due to 'hymn'. With Love people will celebrate one of the hardest workers ever. A player who rediscovered the lost art of the rebound, with strength, focus and determination. The holy trinity of frontcourt basketball. This poster master is so good that every die-hard fan will adore 'till career death does part. From Spike Lee to Jay Hova the world is ready for the next page of Kevin's career, chapter and verse.

His talent and work ethic is rare and sacred, let's just hope his team and association cherish it like they should. This man could plant himself next to the all-time big greats and rebounders if he continues like this. Watch out Wilt, Bill and 'Cap. He's a part of records like Moses Malone, delivering the goods in the post like Karl. K could dethrone Sir Charles and get revenge for being snubbed for an autograph when he was 8 years old. He could take all the colours out of Rodman's pallet of achievements off the glass. He could be one of the best ever in regards to that positioning. Kevin is really that good. Lust after non-fundamental plays all you like, but Love is stronger. Love is real. Love is everything.

"Kevin Love is leading the league in rebounding and you can talk all you want about being on a good team or a bad way you can get 15 rebounds a game even on a bad team and that not be impressive" Charles Barkley on Kevin Love.


Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard sits on the bench during the second quarter against the Chicago Bulls at the United Center in Chicago on January 2, 2010. UPI/Brian Kersey Photo via Newscom

24. Some better news for all-time NBA good guy Dwight Howard. The number 12 hit 10K last night like he was running for charity. He hit 10,000 career points during his Orlando teams burn in Phoenix and burn did they scorching the Suns 111-88. Howard ended the Suns with 26 points, 15 boards and 5 swats, hooking over centre Robin Lopez to twin his impressive output with a career milestone. "I never look at the points," the ever most Dwight says. "Rebounds and blocks are what win games for me." That sure is the case and expect milestones in these statistical categories for this huge big man in the future. Brandon Bass had 17 and Gilbert Arenas 16 points for Orlando who reeled in help from all their players in beating the Arizona side in their own arena. Next up for the Magic on their West Coast road trip will be a little bit more tricky. They will have to reach further into the bag tonight as they play the Los Angeles Lakers tonight.

48. It will be a tough task for Orlando tonight against the Lake Show but their chances may be improved with the uncertainty surrounding the game time status of Kobe Bryant. "We hope he'll be able to play," Coach Jackson said of the Lakers leader who injured his ankle during Saturdays clash with Dallas and missed the Lakers Sunday practice while not talking to the press to end the weekend. Kobe's fall on his ankle against the Mavs was self-dubbed the 'scariest' of his career and if he misses tonight's game he can rest until the Lakers take on their next opponent-Minnesota-on Friday. "Yeah, it would be great for him to have three days off to get better," P-Jax added. "But if he's capable of playing, he'll play." You know Kobe wouldn't have it any other way.

82. One guy who won't be playing for awhile is Miami Heat center Zydrunas Ilgauskas. The centre has been admitted to hospital with a foot infection after stepping on a nail. Miamk coach Erik Spoelstra is unsure when Big Z will make a bee-line back on-court as the player has been receiving intravenous treatments. Miami will miss Z's receive 5.1 points and 4.3 rebounds in a tougher, bigger Eastern Conference despite having plenty of strength in depth with players like Erik Dampier.

O.T. It all felt like the mid-90's again but Reggie Miller wasn't draining threes as the Indiana Pacers beat the New York Knicks to end a 6 game L streak...the Charlotte Bobcats scratched their own five-game skid by fossilising the Raptors...the Cavs woes continue as the Oklahoma Thunder reigned over them...while speaking of the Toronto Raptors the majority owner of the Toronto Maple Leafs Ice Hockey franchise is exploring the sale of the basketball franchise. As they continue to skid, is the life of this young, talented Raptor franchise on thin-ice? TIM DAVID HARVEY.

Saturday, 12 March 2011


1 in 10


The 90's was an exciting and defining era for basketball. After Larry Bird and Magic Johnson revitalised the sport in the 80's a man named Michael Jeffrey Jordan televised this revolution to the whole, wide world in the 90's. Still it wasn't just the greatest of all time that made this era the best. From Hakeem's shake to Ewing's sweats and Payton's glove to the way Rodman suited and booted himself, the league in the last decade of the 20th century was full of talent and character. There was a whole group of players with individual talent and unique gifts who shaped the NBA and changed the game. Guys like Iverson or Shaq, Kemp or Kobe. Or the Hardaway's, Penny and Timmy.

People may forget these days, but the 90's was their hey-day. Forgot injuries or controversies. Anfernee 'Penny' Hardaway and Tim 'Timmy' Hardaway where fan favourites from the jersey's to the commercials and the video games. These two dynamic players where both Point Guards with unique games but still two very different players. Still as the 90's faded away like Jordan's shot and the Bulls passed the torch and the Zen to the beginning of things in 'Lakerland', both players learnt about how times change the hard way. From Carter's to T-Mac's (and many more who would replace them) two of the 90's most defining players where left searching for their own definition as the new millennium bugged out a lot of veterans. Still everybody gets old, but everyone also has their time in the sun. So let's not forget when these two players shined in all their glory days and the individual gifts they graced a one of a kind league with.

With the 3rd pick of the 1993 NBA Draft the Golden State Warriors selected Anfernee 'Penny' Hardaway, and they really should have kept that cap on him a little longer. The Penny they didn't save became Orlando's luck dime as this incredible passer and scorer with a one track star mind of athleticism was the closest thing the L had to comparing Mike to. Before LeBron, Dwyane or even Kobe, Penny was Shaq's right hand man and making things happen, bringing new dynamics to the big, small duo. Orlando could have been real magical, Penny could have earned much more of a legendary legacy then he already has, but injury happened and Shaq and Kobe happened.

Still second place shouldn't always be looked as the first loser, because Penny deserved to be a winner like Charlie Sheen. Even if Shaq had stayed Orlando would have been led by two and a half men, but still when Penny was healthy he was just what the Doctor ordered. Dr. J that is. In his first season Hardaway was the runner up Rookie Of The Year to Chris Webber, while in his sophomore season Anfernee still went to the NBA Finals with Shaq and the Magic, even if Hakeem and Houston brought out the brooms. When Penny was left with spare change in Orlando after O'Neal's departure he put the whole team on his shoulder and almost carried a higher scoring average then Jordan and this wasn't the only way he got close to touching the God of basketball. Air Penny almost entered the atmosphere of the greatest to ever do it. All of this was too much for his knee to take, but take away that and real history could of been made and re-wrote.

If you weren't rocking the number 23 in the 90's then it was probably because you where wearing the 45 one year. Still, there was one guy in school who wore the number 10 and I could never figure out why. That was until I saw the perfect, 10 out of 10 play of Timothy Hardaway. The quick, smart point guard really would take opponents to school in the old class of the mid-90's. He crossed over the ball handling and culture of the game years before Allen Iverson answered the call honing a dribbling style that was impossible for anyone to defend, like him. Stepping into the 90's legendary game like R. Kelly, this Chi-town legend did it with his 'UTEP Two-step'.

Showing he was together then leather with his Run-TMC partners of shooter Chris Mullin and slasher Mitch Richmond, Tim set the temperature for Californian hot basketball in Oakland. Then when Golden State traded him, Tim gave Miami more heat in the era of Mourning, Timmy left his opponents drowned in the sorrow of early Gatorade breaks and heads in towels. He was small but had speed to boot that negative notion into obscurity. He was the 14th pick in the 89' NBA draft but the 5 All-Stars, All-NBA accolades and MVP consideration quickly swept him into top ten consideration. After hitting 5,000 points and 2,500 assists faster then everybody but Oscar Robertson, becoming the 7th player in league history to average 20 and 10 in those categories and sharing a playoff record in steals (8 with fellow Heat legend Dwyane Wade) Timmy re-wrote the history books too.

These two world-wide favourite hit the globe in different ways. Tim Hardaway went down under to get his Team USA Olympic gold in Sydney, while on the low down before receiving his Gold in 1996 (Atlanta) Penny along with Allan Houston, Shawn Kemp and others tuned up the original dream team of '92 in a scrimmage before M.J. et al made history in Barcelona. Could you imagine if both Hardaways took the easy way out and played together? With the ability to drop buckets and dimes on anyone with triathlon athletics, they would have been one of the best backcourts of all-time, if not the best. Both players where selected by the Golden State Warriors but had their individual, defining moments for Florida ballclubs.

Both guys had legendary careers, in the prime-time but as age and injury sent things in to decline, they became journeymen like any old role players. Still despite Anfernee's Phoenix Suns , New York Knicks and Miami Heat and Tim's Dallas, Denver and Indiana, their careers should be known for the way they helped the league travel across boundaries in their moment and not their final destination. Forget the devastation of Penny's knee or the disrespect of Tim's comments about John Amaechi, this does not define them as players. When both guys where on-court their script of balling couldn't be written any better. Their inscriptions on the culture and legacy of 90's basketball is engraved permanently even if their names never laced championship rings.

If the NBA world in the early 2000's was hip-hop, then it was jazz in the 90's like Malone and Stockton, while the Hardaway's moved to their own unique rhythm coming together to form a classic piece of 90's bball. If Michael Jordan was the Michael Jackson, M.J of the music world, then Penny and Timmy where the Babyface and Tony Rich Project, still making hits and a legend of their own. Like the classic group Blackstreet, with the legendary, Lil' Penny in the video, from the backstreets to the blacktop's and the high tops these guys where a commercial success 'No Diggity', no doubt. The type that would make Chuck Taylor proud. The sons of Naismith and Wooden with the awards to prove it, this two the hard way is basketball personified. Swot up on your history or dig up some old videotapes and be taken to school. As the world learned even more about basketball in the 90's Penny and Timmy Hardaway where the education. The hall awaits. Time for the graduation.


NEW YORK - MARCH 12: Kemba Walker #15 of the Connecticut Huskies reacts after missing a game winning shot in the fifth overtime against the Syracuse Orange during the quarterfinals of the Big East Tournament at Madison Square Garden on March 12, 2009 in New York City.  (Photo by Michael Heiman/Getty Images)

BASKETBALL 24/48/82 would like to apologise to it's followers. Due to some technical difficulties we have been down for a week. So there have been no 'Through The Wire' news or game updates. We are back today though, better then ever.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011


Los Angeles Lakers' Kobe Bryant (L) takes the ball past Minnesota Timberwolves' Wesley Johnson during their NBA Europe Live basketball game at the O2 Arena in London October 4, 2010. REUTERS/Dylan Martinez (BRITAIN - Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

24. As one point guard is passed over in Miami, another will pick and roll in his place. The Heat have parted ways with hot backup Carlos Arroyo waiving the Puerto Rican. Miami have one this in order to open a roster spot for free- gent Mike Bibby who recently agreed to a buy-out with the Washington Wizards and also has been one of the top trending topics on Twitter. Sure Miami will miss the flash and speed of Arroyo but they will love the all-round clutch game of Bibby who'll probably see more significant minutes. This is better news for Miami who where left at the alter for Boston by Troy Murphy. Sure Arroyo knew how to beat the whole of the U.S. back some years, but Bibby knows how to go 7 rounds with the Lakers, the world champs. Now Miami have even more championship pedigree. Thank God for LeBron giving him the eye, now the Heat are fancied even more as contenders.

48. More players are being waived goodbye to in the NBA's new way of dealing players past the NBA trade deadline. Following Mike Bibby, another Wizard has agreed on a buyout to take the tricks of his trade somewhere else. Al Thornton will now look for a new team as with Josh Howard and new acquisitions Rashard Lewis and Mo Evans the Wiz are heavily rotated at the 3 like Khalifa records. The Knicks have also made changes to their new roster, releasing wild talent Corey Brewer, a week since his arrival. The player they traded for Brewer, Eddy Curry has also agreed to a buy-out for his massive contract with the Minnesota Timberwolves. New York also waived Kelenna Azubuike yesterday. These guys are talented but the Knicks have done this in order to bring back their former player Jared Jeffries, who ha more size, talent and experience. Jeffries can guard big and small and can score from the perimeter with speed and agility, he's also not afraid to get involved inside for buckets. As N.Y. add another dimension, this championship contention gets that more compelling.

82. GAME OF THE WEEK: This weeks 'Through The Wire' is London themed, with the New Jersey Nets taking on the Toronto Raptors twice this weekend in London, let's take a look back at the last NBA game played in England's capital. Last October the Minnesota Timberwolves shocked the Los Angeles Lakers and everyone in England and the world, putting on an exhibition with a preseason win. Even in other meetings this season the Wolves have howled down the Lakers neck, but not last night. The Lake Show are still in All-Star mode extending their win streak to 5 games post East vs. West game. Thanks to the Lakers frontcourt monster of Bynum, Gasol and Odom, rebounding machine Kevin Love was taken out of his game, en route to a heart-filled, 90-79 Lakers win. As L.A. made 28 second-chance points Pau Gasol had 17 rebounds and 12 points, while Andrew Bynum had the highest in the opposite category with 14 points and 7 rebounds. Kobe had 24, but only made 8 shots in a poor offensive game which was polished off on the glass by the teams respective window cleaners. K. Love did had 13 points and 11 rebounds for his 47th straight double-double but without a W in the box-score these stats did not have a positive correlation. The Los Angeles Lakers on the other hand are on the rise.

O.T. Andrew Bogut's muscle strain means the Buck will stop here, for around a week before he can play again for Milwaukee...down in Detroit the Pistons are fired up. Richard Hamilton is expected to play his first game in 10 after apparently squashing things with his coach John Kuester...speaking of 10's, centre Jarron Collins has got 10 days to prove to the Portland Trail Blazers that he's worthy of a full-time contract. Not injuring himself should ensure that...Washington Wizard John Wall and L.A. Clipper Blake Griffin have been named Rookies of the Month (who else)...while Dallas Mav coach Rick Carlisle and the Philly 76ers' Doug Collins are your NBA Coaches of the Month for February...Antwan Jamison has undergone season ending injury on his finger as his reunion with former Golden State Warrior, Baron Davis and better days with Cleveland will have to be put on hold. As for being put on hold, until tomorrow thanks for reading BASKETBALL 24/48/82's 'Through The Wire'. TIM DAVID HARVEY.

Tuesday, 1 March 2011


Members of the USA team pose for a picture before their FIBA Basketball World Championship game against Tunisia in Istanbul September 2, 2010. REUTERS/Murad Sezer (TURKEY - Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

24. This weekend London is calling the NBA for the first regular-season games every to be played in England in efforts for the Basketball fan base to grow in England even further ahead of the 2012 Olympic games in London (hey this writers been a British fan since he's 11, there's always been fans here). As the New Jersey nets take on the Toronto Raptors for two games abroad that actually matter U.K fans will have even more basketball to look forward to. This is because it has just been announced that the NBA and Team USA have committed to play games in Manchester, England next year on the run up to 2012. So that means fans in the North West of England (around 5 hours away from the capital city London) will get to see guys like Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Kevin Durant. The MEN Arena which boasted the title of worlds best arena in 2009 (take that MSG) will host the game and the women's Team USA too (you'll get to see Candace Parker). These warm-up games for the 2012 Olympics will sure make basketball hotter in England. A country where football...excuse me (I am English) soccer is king.

48. Back in the States, the Boston Celtics have just added more of their trademark toughness by signing rebounding machine Troy Murphy. At first it was thought that Miami had inked the star but instead Celtic green will run through this reliable players dedicated veins. Several sources confirmed that Murphy was bound for South beach but it seems that New England will hold the new team for Troy. Still, maybe we should wait a few days for a press conference before we get a little too excited. One things for sure, the guy is a great addition to an Eastern Conference contender who always need much more inside to deal with the tall West and the East, who's contenders are getting a lot better at the core of their centre.

82. Looks like this Lakers/Clippers rivalry is heating up even more as the Clip Show are almost exciting as the Lake Show's showtime brand of ball. As teams get better, Griffin dunks get thrown and rivalries intensify the Lakers and Clippers shared Staples Centre soon may not be big enough for the both of them. Clippers guard Eric Gordon thinks it wouldn't be a bad idea if the Clippers relocated to another stadium. Are these most-improved Clip show getting a little ahead of themselves? The former Buffalo team will always be second-fiddle to the Lakers when it comes to Staples. After being asked about what could of been with a potential, past move to Anaheim, Gordon told press, “I wouldn’t mind going down there — to separate ourselves from L.A. from the Lakers." Still the top guard also expressed his respect, "But it’s always good to compete with them.” Love thy neighbour indeed. Still Gordon added, “I don’t have any complaints. But you see all L.A. everywhere, Lakers stuff everywhere…(you would) have your own identity within the city and your team. That’s just a lot better.” Gordon doesn't need to worry if things keep improving for the Clippers (and as long as they keep Blake) their identity and 'stuff' will spread like wildfire.

O.T. Here's a shift in power for you. The West's best, Tony Parker will miss 2-4 weeks with a calf injury...let the auction for Mike Bibby commence. The star guard has given up $6.2 mill to leave the Washington Wizards. Rumor has it the Miami Heat may request for his talents in South Beach...Sure Kendrick Perkins may not be playing anytime soon (thanks to injury), but his new Thunder team have ensured his playing career their will last for much longer (thanks to an extension) Nugget, Danilo Gallinari will also miss time with his new team as a injured toe will keep him out for around a week to 10 days...Antawn Jamison may also be missing more time then a week, as he has broken his pinky finger. Seems like a small problem, but it may see him miss the rest of the season, because let's face it the Cavs aren't making the playoffs anytime soon...Deron Williams is happy to be a net but with nobody to pass to, he wants the stars to align in the Garden State. Watch out New York, where not talking about the Knicks either, Brooklyn's about to go hard. TIM DAVID HARVEY.