Archive for June 5th, 2009

The NBA Finals, Noted

I’ll be honest: I no longer have the time nor effort to think coherently about the NBA. Instead, I’m more of a bullet point kind of guy. So, some thoughts while I skipped Game 1 to see Star Trek:

  • The real reason the Magic are in the Finals? Pinstripes. The last four years Orlando has donned pinstripes = two Finals appearances. The 10 years in-between = irrelevance.
  • I know it’s supposed to be “Magic is,” but that just don’t sound good.
  • And could it kill them to taper the stripes the same on the front and the back?
  • How could the Lakers reach the Finals without being able to defend the pick-and-roll? Isn’t that, you know, kind of important? That’s like a team reaching the World Series that has trouble fielding ground balls.
  • Wait…the Magic won 59 games this year? That’s the Dave Holmes “Say What?” Stat of the Week.
  • Wait…the Magic have been around for 20 years? That’s the Joey Lawrence “Whoa!” Stat of the Week.
  • Sure, the Lakers looked good in Game 1, but isn’t there a small part of them thinking, “If only we had kept the other Gasol…”?
  • An Orlando win totally vindicates Patrick Ewing, right?
  • It was nice to see J.J. Redick get some playing time earlier in the playoffs, but come on, when the rookie from Western Kentucky comes back from injury, you can’t expect Redick to crack that rotation.
  • Is Amway Arena the same building as the old O-Rena? Either way, why don’t they call it that anymore?
  • Isn’t it about time to get on the Spurs’ front office for letting both Luis Scola and Hedo Turkoglu walk?
  • Do you ever think that Adam Morrison sits on the bench and says to himself, “Man, I should have come out a year earlier.”
  • I don’t care how it turned out: That was a terrible contract Orlando gave Rashard Lewis.
  • And how didn’t Lewis and Ray Allen team up for multiple Northwest Division championships in Seattle?
  • If you constructed an all-time Orlando Magic roster, where does Tom Tolbert fit in?
  • That was a rough Game 1 for Orlando. I can’t remember the Magic having a worse start to a Finals series, right?

Baseball Nostalgia

It is currently an interesting time to be a New York baseball fan. Both the Mets and Yankees are in their opening seasons of heavily subsidized new stadiums. A common complaint about both of these stadiums is that the seat and food prices are too expensive and—unlike in past times—it is no longer feasible for middle class families to go to games multiple times per year. Wallace Matthews of Newsday critiques the owners for running the teams “as if they were hedge funds.”

I’m moderately sympathetic to this argument. I, for one, do not support using taxpayer money to fund the stadiums of two very profitable organizations. “The Yankees got $1.2 billion in tax-exempt bonds and $136 million in taxable bonds; the Mets got $697 million in tax-free bonds” to build their new stadiums according to Sports Illustrated. But, the Mets and the Yankees are not to blame; they are in business to make profit, so if the government is going to throw money their way, then it doesn’t surprise me that they take it. Ideally, I’d love them to be honorable and not take the funding, but that is too much to expect. The government, on the other hand, has the power to stop disbursing these bonds; the onus is on them to stop giving billions of dollars to already profitable organizations. Accordingly, I have trouble accepting the argument that because Citi Field and the new Yankee Stadium are subsidized, they somehow owe the fans—the taxpayers—affordable ticket prices.
Continue reading

The Big Question

Does anyone remember Polly Pocket?