The results are in...guess who's #1?

The results of LA Ball Talks team blog contest are in. And once again, Jazz fans have made it clear that True Blue Jazz is their favorite Jazz blog on the Internet. Thanks to all who voted. Stay tuned because we have big big BIG news on the way....Prepare for Jazz heaven.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Grading the "Redeem Team"

How pathetic were the last 8 years for USA basketball that we have to redeem ourselves in the Olympics this year? I am not trying to be an arrogant American here, but we should not be trying to redeem ourselves of anything basketball related in the world arena. Over the last 8 years our best players were being selfish and arrogant and we put together teams hi-lighted by the likes of Richard Jefferson, Stephon Marbury and Shawn Marion. It is true that the world game has advanced, but not to the point that we would lose to Puerto Rico and Greece whose total population between the two countries can't be more than the state of New Jersey. But alas, we took our dominance for granted and here we are trying to restore the glory and redeem ourselves as the best in the world. After 2 games against a very spirited Chinese team and an Angolan team whose only goal was to lose by less than 40 do we really know anything about our team? Probably not, but I am going to give the players a grade anyway.

Starting 5

Jason Kidd: C-

All I have to say about Jason Kidd is "whatever". Its nice and all that you got off your rocker and came over to be the baby sitter, but feel free to contribute to the team at some time. Its time to give the floor to Chris Paul and Deron Williams full time.

Kobe Bryant: C+

Feel free to hit a shot Kobe. Your defense has been really good and I understand you are not trying to take over and be the main scoring option, but 1-15 from a really short 3 point line just plain sucks.

Lebron James: A

Dude is a freak and playing like an absolute animal on both ends of the floor. The only drawback to his game so far and the only thing keeping him from an A+ is his poor free throw shooting, 3 of 8 so far.

Carmello Anthony: C+

Horrible against China, played better against Angola. He is obviously not on this team for his defensive abilities so feel free to start being better offensively.

Dwight Howard: A-

The Man Child. I would trade AK, Boozer and Memo to get him on the Jazz. In the whole world, only Lebron can compete with this guy physically. I would like to see him rebound a bit more and block a few shots, but over all he is playing great.

The 6th Man

Dwayne Wade: A+

The MVP so far. His stat line for the first games:

38 Points, 13 of 15 shooting, 2 of 3 from 3, 10 of 12 Free Trows, 5 Boards, 3 Steals, 2 Assists.

Keep in mind that he has played a total of 36 minutes or just barely what he would have in 1 NBA game. He has missed a total of 4 shots including free throws. No more needs to be said.

The Rotation Players
Deron William and Chris Paul: B+

I hate putting these two together, but they really are playing very similar roles right now and both are doing it very well. Deron and Chris are both playing very solid overall games; scoring some, assisting some, rebounding a little, being a pest on D and between the two of them should be getting all of the PG / backup SG minutes at Jason Kidd's expense. The team excels when one or both of these two are on the court.

Chris Bosh: B

The Predator is playing some really good ball right now, but tends to get pushed around a bit by bigger opponents. He and Dwight Howard are a good change of pace combo for that position.

The Specialists

Michael Redd and Tayshaun Prince: B-

Both are here to do one thing that they do really good and nothing else. Redd is here to shoot and soften up a zone and Prince is here to be a defensive pest and cause havoc. Redd's shooting could be a little better, but overall they are meeting expectations with their current roles.
The Victory Cigar

Carlos Boozer: D

Tell me if this sounds familiar. Boozer has the ball on the low block at point blank range and misses the easy jump hook or attempts to finesse a finger roll when he should have just rammed it down some poor guys throat. Or how about this one, Boozer is guarding a so-so player in the low block and gets blown by on a simple spin move for 2 while he is left standing there with his back still facing the basket. Its almost like he thinks the guy is still in front of him. Point is, it was easy to look past the defensive short comings when his offense was so brilliant, but throughout the playoffs and now these first two Olympic games I am officially concerned.


Booner said...

First of all, that Team Picture alone could have been it's own post. What the hell is that? Is that taken in a Church Gym?
"Alright, I like when Coach is standing but lets do this, lets have him sit in a chair, sideways, border-line stradling Dwighty....there it is. perfect. O.K. Now the rest of you fold your arms behind your, more. Fold them tight so you look really uncomfortable. Brilliant!"
Anyhow, great post. I agree with all of them. The one thing I don't understand though, is the Kobe thing? Can he not play "D" and score in the same game? They make it sound impossible to do both. If he is the MVP, I want to see both offense and defense from him. He should be able to do both. Am I wrong here? I mean, come on, I played in a church game once where I scored 24 Points and had four steals. And that was in Region Play. That's big-time competition.

Hammy said...

Speaking of the team picture, how did Dwight Howard get to be the only one who did not have to fold his arms behind his back? And is coach K a little "too close" to Dwight Howards two best friends? I assume that this picture was taken after a practice because Coach K looks like he is about to throw up from the smell.

UtesFan89 said...

Team picture... something about Howard being a Adidas guy, and not a Nike guy. Something like that... there was a big deal made about it when it first came out (with Nike denying everything).

Ben Q. Rock said...

The Jason Kidd action figure is actually more mobile than Jason Kidd.