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On rejecting NBA storylines

Yikes, I'm being called out on my own blog. Not by name, but as a professional sports writer some of these points hit close to home. (Except for the hair stuff -- mohawks are newsworthy!) -- MW

By Kevin Sawyer

Basketball writers are notoriously fond of storylines. This stands to reason, what with the whole writing-as-profession thing. Narratives are in their wheelhouse, so to speak, and who doesn’t want to hear about Kobe Bryant’s marriage, attitude toward Lamar Odom, fashion-sense, fiber-intake et al?

The obsession with storylines has become so pronounced that actual storylines are weighed in comparison with anticipated storylines. Kobe won the MVP award last year, and his team performed ably if I recall correctly, but that didn’t have the wow factor of a potential trade to, and feud with, a new team, so instead we heard about the Houston Rockets.

It’s like the stock market. Sportswriters only cover NBA storylines when they exceed expectations. Remember how Tom Donaghy was going to take the NBA down with him? This year, the gig is for sportswriters to tell us what storylines to follow. I find this patently absurd. I’ll follow whatever I damn well please, thank you.

So with the season amongst us and within us, here is a list of storylines in which I have precisely no interest.

CP3 vs. D-Will

This isn’t Magic vs. Isiah, this is Magic vs. Maurice Cheeks. Comparing two talented conference rivals who play the same position is a reasonable conversation to have, so long as the talented conference rivals are equally talented, which is not at all the case. Plus, D-Will isn’t even a cool nickname. I’m calling him Jazzysass from now on.

Can Ron Artest Co-exist With T-Mac and Yao?

Probably not. Given the Rockets recent history of injuries, however, the better question is whether Ron Artest can co-exist with Brent Barry and Carl Landry. That said, if Ron Artest carved the word "popcorn" on his chest, filled the Oklahoma City visitors locker room with feral cats, and set himself on fire, I’d still yawn.

Well, unless the cats also caught fire and ran wild during a Thunder-Clippers game. That would be exquisite. Chris Kaman was born for such a situation.


Calm down.

Are the Timberwolves Playoff-bound?

Seriously, has anyone ever been this excited about a potential 39 win team? I live in Minnesota, and I can tell you that the enthusiasm is not shared locally. That said, at least a third of Minnesota sports fans still think the Twins have a shot at winning the World Series this year, and most are wondering when we’re going to trade Kevin Garnett. This town has the team it deserves.

Are the Spurs Too Old?

Nope. Next.

How Will the Recession Affect The NBA?

It will have a negative impact, which will result in job and pay cuts. Does any fan care if the communications director for the Bucks only makes $148,000 this year, or if the MLE decreases by three percent? If the league goes bankrupt (unlikely), then I’ll follow this narrative. Otherwise, go Pistons!

This-or-that Team Looked Great In the Pre-Season. What’s in Store for Them?

Ask the Hawks, Warriors and Pacers, who finished first, second and third in last year’s preseason, respectively, while the four teams who made the conference finals posted a 16-15 preseason record.

Look At So-and-so’s Hairdo! It’s WEEEEEEIRD!

Oh, for crying out loud. Look, funny haircuts come and go. Just cover the damn sport already.

JamesOn Curry Got a One-game Suspension for Public Urination

Okay, that’s pretty funny. Plus, his name sounds like an interactive electronic device. JamesOn says "turn left". JamesOn recommends – "end post".