Sunday, 13 March 2016
By TIM DAVID HARVEY.
Face it beans, it's almost over! The chips are well and truly down. The games almost in the refrigerator and you know all too well about the jello. Soon the man that will join the legendary Los Angeles Laker legacy making likes of Chickie, Magic, Kareem, the Logo and his old Wild West partner Shaq in a forum of bronze in the purple heart of the downtown City of Lost Angels will retire. That will be it! Day called. No more purple reign in So Cal. But as Kobe Bryant hangs up those Nikes which of his iconic purple and gold jerseys will be worthy enough to be raised to the Big Game, silk, stilted rafters with the likes of the aformentioned, Jaamal Wilkes, James Worthy, Gail Goodrich, Elgin Baylor and of course Wilt Chamberlain, the 100 point man who only Kobe got as close to like Jordan!?
In the last Great Western days when the Lakers played in their Ingelwood, white pillared colliseum and still rocked their Showtime 80's uniforms with the purple and white lined piping, it was an 18 year old kid with an afro and sunglasses to match that was the hottest thing in California and Lakers attire in the 90's not named Rene Russo. Some didn't get this shorty but after many Jazz to Utah's ears airballs made him be cool, he went ultra Travolta when he found his Saturday Night, Grease slick rhythm. There was the Slam Dunk contest win back in the bald M.J. days where this young Airness didn't even bother to work out of his warm-ups and then there was the move. The major shift like number 23 laying it up in the line, changing hands. New digs, new unis and a new approach saw Kobe leap into Shaq's arms before the death of a dynasty rocked these fellas as he won his first championship and then went all Lionel Richie, once, twice, thrice times a Larry O'Brien lover for the Mike like threepeat. If that wasn't enough once Big Daddy took his talents to the Heat of South Beach, this little red Corvette and Prince that would be King busted through all sorts of brick walls, car jumping like he ran off Diesel and not Aristotle. Then if that wasn't enough Kobe Bryant almost jumped over the Big Dipper...forget Jumpman. Over Drake's Toronto Raptors a decade ago when Aubrey Graham was just a teen T.V. show idol, the Black Mamba finally found his venom sinking more points into Canada then he did against the Mavericks of Dallas just a few weeks, three quarters and 62 points ago. If you want to put Kobe Bryant's number 8 number up in the championship banner ceiling, where you can't even find the range of his talent, you just may want to add a one next to it.
24 Carat Purple & Gold.
One over Jordan. That's what people think. But Kobe Bryant's counting up to number 24 represented more than that, or number 23 for the man that chose his Lower Merion High School digits before 33 (which obviously Kobe couldn't rock because of Kareem). It meant redemption. The post Diesel and Zen age that saw Kobe reunite with...well Phil Jackson. And then D-Fish, class of '96. Before being fast and furious nitrus injected with some real championship Gasoline in the form of his second partner in victory crime Pau Gasol. But let's not forget number seven who got them to heaven (we see you Lamar Odom...stay on the up!). Kobe took the number 24 and a real 15 to go for his one goal. Two more of the same thing Gollum found so precious. But this Vino was more Voldermort as he looked to wizard his way to being the NBA's Lord of the Rings...he even dressed up as the big, bad with no nose from 'Harry Potter' for Halloween. But Kobe had one for the legend of Larry...scary huh?! The perfect villain. It was no more Mr. Nice Guy for the most competitive player since the hero from Chicago that wore a gold rope around his neck. But forget the great debate between the constant Kobe against Mike, head-to-head comparisons. What if Bryant played himself? Young vs old. Number 8 versus number 24. Vino V Bean. Batman against the Dark Knight. Forget the Man of Steel, Superman! From father calling time (no Jellybean) to injury crippling prime, Kobe's been fighting enough of himself and his own demons over the last few years and closing chapters of his career. Twenty four hours a day. Get it? Eight days a week?! To be one of basketballs Beatles in a fab four with the real, only big-three of Michael, Magic and Bird. Perhaps his greatest victory wasn't the one soaked in sweat and champagne but the one drenched and drowned in perspiration and pain. How he's bled purple...not just lived gold. And oh how has be aspired to prevail. Through tearing rotator cuff to pushing his achillies back into place, getting back up like Rocky, hitting two free throws back before walking off on his own terms, when most would tear up in a wheelchair. Can you roll and rock with that? Kobe's been more than a peach with the orange basketball son. He's been everything between a hard place. And when he's finally put down like the doberman this Olympian athlete is...I say put both up there.
Number 8? Number 24? I don't care! Kobe Bryant will always be the one!
Tuesday, 1 March 2016
By TIM DAVID HARVEY
'There's a man going round taking names. And he decides who to free and who to blame. Not everyone will be treated the same.' You know the rest...when the man comes around. Hear the trumpets, hear the cowbells. More! It's punishing isn't it? One batch! Two batch. Treating all his enemies like penny and dime. Critics, opponents? They're all change to a dozen. Number 15 adds up to more. 20 and 10. One batch. Two batch. You can't call that penny and dime. Word on the street is there's a new major player in the NBA. The shooter as independent as they come. Tracking teams to their home court and taking them out with military precision. With enough floor knowledge and statistical hardware to take out any basketball city. This game is about to explode. BANG! Maybe everyone in this league created him. Don't think there's a connection? Perhaps all of the Steph Curry 'Daredevils' of the association opened the door for big men like this. Don't get caught in his crossfire. Blood is being shed and he's given more than his fair share. The city of Sacramento needs him and he's going to take care of them. No matter who or what stands in his way. You hit them and they get back up...he hits them and they STAY down! Why is he doing this? Because everything else is a half measure. This man has what it takes to get the job done. This man is no coward. You know he's one good day away from being the best. Hero or anti-not he's still super this season. Still a Marvel. To be Frank, DeMarcus Cousins is The Punisher. The King of his castle in Sacto, California. Yep that's right Mr. Bernthal. This is for you Jon. Go get those crossed bones like you sold us that pen off Wall Street. In S.K. away black that headband may as well be a skull cap. He's the symbol of bringing the pain to a soft league. Ride and do or die. He's cocked and loaded. Locked, stocked and two smoking barrels...and that's just his arms. Watch DMC run and he inks more...
Now walk this way. DMC is the King when it comes to this rocks hard game. Like Balboa this Rocky's Creed is incredible. This kids a fighter. Best award nomination or not...word to Michael Jordan B. It's not about how hard you get hit. It's about how hard you get hit and GET back up. And this guy is tougher than basketball leather with the jacket like Run-TMC. Yep that's right we mean Tim Hardaway, Mitch Richmond and Chris Mullin. Now they were the Golden State of real Warriors. Well this DMC know how to raise hell like his game was born in the 90's too. Everyone else are just suckers in comparison. You can't rock this guy out the box when he leads the bounce. He rocks the house! Can you rock it like this? You be 'illin like a Dr. J 'touchdown'. It's like that and that's the way it is. Just wait until he develops a hook! Then it will all be over like the bridge for B.D.P. That's just how prolific Boogie's down low productions are. He's the one like KRS. Out for the win by any means necessary all X's and O's. Don't think of him as criminal minded. His philosphy is necessary. His business...poetry. Taking all that tries to beat him back to elementary. That's our word like we're his sponser. But trust us this is the sound of a beast. One that's on a higher level. Don't blame everything on the boogie these nights. He's bringing sunshine and good times back to the coast of California, making Sacramento a wonderland. He's the Earth, Wind and Fire of the Kings organisation...as powerful and destructive as the elements. Want any more reasons to put him on your fantasy? Blowing and burning it all down. Ashes to ashes. Dust to dust. Lay it down. He's the one true King in this town. Give him the crown in this Game of Thrones. The kingdom awaits as heads roll from opponents in opposition, all the way to the fans in the stands.
Relate to Cousins like your uncles son because this guy is family now. Distant kin of Charles Barkley but with more mound to his rebound. More force than fun. Chuck may have chucked a guy through a window after a bar fight but this guy battles for the glass with the best. You saw him stand up for himself against Kevin Durant. Even amongst the downpour of a thunder storm he wont back down from the best. But he still shows restraint...its a good job for Steven Adams that we all discovered that. This guys no punk...he's a pro...albeit a professional one. The best of the best to ever do it and make artwork in the paint that will last on the court canvas of the Hall of Fame's gallery know it. Know this King is the new Chris Webber of Sacramento going fourth, strong but smooth on the inside with some out too. Former teammate of C-Webb and Sacramento's General Manager Vlade Divac knows this. As does former opponent and Kings part owner Shaquille O'Neal (and you by George, best believe Coach Karl does too...no matter what everyone thinks. You, him, her!). And Boggie's moves definitly have help and inspiration from these two former playing, legendary Los Angeles Lakers centres. From Divac's flair for the all-round running the floor of the FIBA international game, to the pure petroleum power of the Diesel. Oh and both those big men were perfect point passes like they were off guards. Soon you wont just know D.C. as a 20 and 10 guy. You can take 5 too. One through five, through fifteen this is what this all round team needs too to bolster their raw but real roster. Featuring the legendary role playing likes of the 'Tuff Juice' defensive dogging of Caron Butler to the have points will travel, All-Star journeyman gunner Rudy Gay and the happy go shot lucky future of Seth Curry whose on the same coast as some big brother of his. And then of course we can't forget the alumni.
Country cousins isn't just familiar with King purple. His heart belongs to the Big Blue Nation. As this former Wildcat wildcard who clawed away with Coach Caps boys is a Kentucky king too. U.K. all day like England. He's united in the kingdom of men who made it over the walls of Rupp arena. Teammates and freshman to be alike. Legacy makers who now make the league like everyone from Washington Wizard John Wall and Phoenix Sun Eric Bledsoe. To Los Angeles Laker sophomore Julius Randle, to one of this years top rookies, Willie Cauley-Stein, drafted by...drum roll please...the Sacramento Kings. Forming a future force of a formidable, frontcourt frontline with his new Sacramento brother Cousins. But this perfect partnership isn't the dynamite, dynamic duo these young princes run on however. That would be the Kentucky court connection of DeMarcus' pick and the roll of pass first, prototype Point Guard Rajon Rondo, quarterbacking the now and later of this franchise. Making for quite the team and one of the leagues best double acts complete with matching headbands and varsity gear. But if you want to talk about a real Kentucky connection crossover and contemporary then look no futher to the line of joining hair above the New Orleans Pelicans franchise faces line of sight. Because in this 'things done changed', new era of notorious bigs the only one better than this bad boy is the Ant-Man Anthony Davis. Sure Wilt and Bill this isn't Chamberlain and Russell, but in this small ball, present tense league its still a revolution amongst all this Curry and other Kings and a far cry from the Shaq vs hack from every fouling out rotated player above 6, 10 age. The numbers speak for themselves. 27.3 points, 11.3 rebounds and 3.2 assists and countless nightly and career highs that brutalise the box score like he does interior defenders. Sure most brilliant big men mount up numbers that make their court vision 20 and 10, but in foresight just how great could 30 and 10 be? It would be the old engine of this running league, under the hood of some Fast and Furious nitrus. Flip the switch because this young mans rumble is changing the game. He's a knockout. Putting them all down. Now hows that for punishment in this NBA war zone...with a capital D.M.C.?! Click...clack...BANG!