It's been a minute but let's take a look at what's going on across the sports landscape.
New York Knicks - Yes, I gotta start here and more talk about Jeremy Lin. I've been watching him play and yesterday, if you weren't 'AlLin' you should be by now. Lin has 'it'. How can you describe 'it', I'm not sure, but it's easier to provide definitions of those guys that don't have 'it' as opposed to those that do. The kid is tough, he has a short memory (must have played corner for a football team at some point), and he's helping this team win. He's actually got Jared Jeffries facing the basket looking to score (damn near amazing). How long does this happen? I'm not sure, but I think the consensus is that you ride this out as long as you can. Jason Terry mouthed off that Lin is just a product of D'Antoni's system, but I would dare him to mention the last few point guards that have been in that system in NY and succeeded. Lin is real.
Los Angeles Lakers - I am not a Kobe hater, but I'm not always a fan. Kobe is arguably one of the best players in the league and his pedigree demands that you pay attention to him. With that said, it almost hurts me to see him play this year with the team he has, knowing that they really don't have a chance unless he goes off for 30+ a night. His knee is looking great and he's pretty healthy. I know the Lakers tried to get him some help with the trade for CP3, but they gotta pull another jedi mind trick on someone to get Kobe some help. Even I don't want to see him going out like this. (As a side note, the Pau for Boozer deal seems like a win win for both teams.)
Oklahoma City Thunder - It's always been an 'if' Westbrook and Durant get it together, this team is dangerous. I am slowly starting to think that they are close. Maybe it's because both of them got their money from the organization (Durant knew he was, Westbrook, I think wasn't so sure) or they are just playing well right now. They just need that third consistent scorer and this team can play enough defense to win it all. It's not a surprise to most, but it's been fun watching this team mature.
Chicago Bulls - Now that my main man Carlos Boozer has let go of the spray painting of his scalp to imitate hair, the Bulls have been winning their fair share of games without Derrick Rose. I've said this before and I'll say it again, let Rose get healthy and forget about the regular season. He's good enough to pick it all back up in a few games and put this team back on his shoulders. IF Rose is hurt going into the playoffs, I'm not liking their chances of beating the Heat (I may not like their chances even if he's healthy). But this organization has got to protect Rose from himself, because you can see when he's on the bench, that he 'wants' to play so badly. Long term thinking Bulls fans, long term.
San Antonio Spurs - This always happens, the Spurs are slept on and then they surprise everyone. Well, right now the Grizzlies that beat the Spurs last year aren't here and these Spurs are looking good behind the play of the young (maybe not so much anymore) Tony Parker. Parker has been just as good as anyone named Lin in the past month and he even limits hit turnovers. Tim Duncan has found the way back machine in a few games and he'll need to be able to do that in the playoffs for them to make some noise. Over the next few weeks Charles Barkley will be practicing his old schtick,.....'Ginobili!!!!'
Portland Trail Blazers - Tell me if you've heard this before, Greg Oden had surgery on Friday and will probably have another surgery on his knee to clean it out. I'm not even sure whether to laugh or cry, but I mean this guy can't catch a break. Send him to Phoenix so he can play since they seem to have the fountain of youth in bottles and cans in their training rooms.
Atlanta Hawks - Tell me if you didn't see this one coming: Tracy McGrady is pissed at his playing time and he let it be known to all (the media and his coach). We know that it's hard for good players to become less than good players (especially after injury) and sometimes they want to play more when they see the team struggling. I'm not sure that McGrady playing more is the answer to the Hawks woes, unless he morphs into a big man (center) who can rebound and score. T-Mac has been good in his 18 minutes per game this year, but there is a reason that the Hawks were the only team that gave him a chance.
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Oakland Athletics - Fresh off of the attraction of Moneyball and the rebirth of this team through the movie a minor deal ($500K) with Manny Ramirez has put many eyes back on the A's. The A's signed Ramirez to this deal in part to please newly signed Yoenis Cespedes (4 yrs / $36M). Ramirez will have to sit the first 50 games of the season while serving a ban for violating the MLB drug policy, but this is a great deal for minimal money. If Ramirez can get Cespedes comfortable and hit in the high 200's this may go down as a great gamble. If not, they can release him and be done with it. I am actually going to root for Manny.
Tiger Woods - Yes, I have to start here. If you read earlier I mentioned that Jeremy Lin had 'it', well Tiger used to have 'it', but now 'it' isn't there. For Tiger it might have been a fear that other golfers felt or his game just got better on Saturday and Sunday, but lately Tiger has been relatively......toothless. Yes, Lefty spanked him last week at Pebble Beach after being down 6 strokes, but I don't think that other people are in Tiger's head, I think it's all on him. Whatever Tiger needs to do, whether it's a few more visits to Perkins or the porn convention, he needs to go ahead and get it done. I miss the old Tiger that dominated the golf course and struck fear in most golfers when he arrived early and started practicing at tournaments. The guy that you watched to see where he would be on on the leader board on Saturday, knowing that he was going to win on Sunday. I want him back, the guy who had 'it'.