I have a couple more days of high speed internet access here at the in-laws' house, so I thought I should take advantage and get a post out there. In no particular order:
- There have been several pieces on the new and improved Chris Kaman lately. Jonathan Abrams got a chance to use a little more ink than the LA Times' editors usually grant to the Clippers' beat writer and put together a nice story. It contains a few more details of Chris' work this summer in re-shaping his body and improving the range on his jump shot. OC Register columnist Jeff Miller gave us his Kaman column yesterday. Citizen Lawler's Law is concerned that Miller may have borrowed the Generic Clippers idea when he said "Once decidedly Brand, [the Clippers'] offense now is convincingly bland." Eh. Nice enough turn of phrase. Generic Clippers is better. The national media is beginning to notice Kaman also. SI.com's Ian Thomsen was forced to write an entire Inside the NBA column on Kaman when he left him off an earlier list of most improved players.
At any rate, it's nice that Chris is getting some recognition. I still think he's a long shot for the All Star team, but if his numbers remain this high (and he's shown no sign of dropping off) he'll have to get serious consideration. 3rd in the league in rebounds, 3rd in blocked shots, first in the Western Conference in double-doubles... it's hard to ignore. My prediction - he won't make the team originally, but he'll get named to the squad as one of the inevitable replacement players.
- Tim Thomas is scheduled for an MRI Tuesday. What a rotten Christmas Eve it will be if it turns out there's ligament damage. It's pretty easy saying 'this team has had more injury troubles than any team I can remember.' In fact, it seems someone is saying that about some team every season. Last season's Bucks had a ton of injuries. Hell, some team gets hit hard every year. BUT... three major leg injuries in a period of 9 months is ridiculous. Forget the strains and pulls and hyper-extensions. I'm talking torn ACL's and ruptured Achilles... nasty stuff. Even James Singleton suffered a major knee injury in 2007, albeit after he had left the Clippers. Obviously I'm hoping that Thomas is not added to the list, and certainly he did not look as devastated as Davis did. But both were hurt on seemingly innocuous contact, both were originally diagnosed as having sprains, and most importantly, both are on the Clippers in 2007. I've decided that it is a calendar 2007 thing, so we only have about 9 more days of this. The year can't really end soon enough.
- Art Thompson III of the OCR is obsessed with Danny Granger. It's not news that Yaroslav Korolev was a bad pick. If there is a lottery pick in the last 10 years who got fewer minutes before being cut loose (barring injury), I can't think of who it is. And obviously any fan is going to think of what might have been at that position in the draft. Yes, Danny Granger was a highly touted prospect whom the Clippers should have at least considered, and would have done well to choose. But I'm telling you, Thompson is obsessed. As the team was going back and forth this summer with Yarik (he's signed, he's on the summer league team, he's not signed, he's in camp, he's a long shot, he's cut again) every single Korolev story contained an obligatory reference to Granger. When Korolev signed with Dynamo Moscow a couple of weeks ago, there was a Granger reference. And he will go to great lengths to get in his Granger reference. In a recent blog post calling Chris Kaman and Mike Dunleavy Jr. the leading candidates for Most Improved Player, he somehow managed to bring the subject back around to Korolev and Granger.
Ironically, the younger Dunleavy plays in tandem, forming a solid one-two punch with the player that his father passed up but should have picked in the 2005 NBA draft, forward Danny Granger.
He had to go a long way for that one. Let it go, Art. It's over.
Here's the thing. Why even single out one guy? Gerald Green was projected even higher than Granger in that draft, and was also still available. But of course he's done only slightly better than YK. Meanwhile, the Clippers took Daniel Ewing in the second round when Monta Ellis was available. You can play this game until the cows come home (where do those cows go when they leave?) Yes, Granger was an obvious possibility there and I myself have pointed that out on many occasions. But they didn't pick Granger - they picked Korolev - and it didn't work out. He's moved on Art. You need to move on too.
- Most importantly, I still need three volunteers to write game recaps while I'm incommunicado. Citizen John R has volunteered to take the Minnesota game on Dec. 31 (he grabbed the only likely win), and Citizen Lawler's Law has committed to cover the Spurs game on Jan. 6. Citizen ZhivClip - unless you have a serious scheduling conflict, I expect you to step up. And what about you, Citizen mp? Supac? Jax? Now is the time for all good citizens to come to the aid of ClipsNation, or some such crap. I need volunteers for both Phoenix games 12/26 and 12/27 and New Orleans Jan. 2. Let me know.