Breath it in

Posts Tagged ‘Brandon Jennings’

Favorite Player Power Rankings: NBA

Posted by mvetack on January 31, 2011

Michael Jordan was and always will be my favorite basketball player of all time.  Even after his retirement and enshrinement into the Hall of Fame, he still graces video game covers, sells shoes like no other, and stays more relevant than most NBA stars of today.  To get pumped up and ready for my men’s league games I will pop in my Jordan DVDs for pregame.  I originally fell in sports love with Jordan simply because I was young, just started getting into sports, and we shared the same first name.  After he retired I was still relatively young and decided I needed a new favorite player.  Vince Carter stepped into that void in my basketball player obsession nicely.  Vince had the excitement factor with his ridiculous in game dunks and he played for a new team with a kick ass dinosaur as its mascot.  I have supported Vince throughout his career and to this day have owned him in every fantasy basketball league I have taken part in.  I have won 2 in a row and looking for three in a row this season after trading Brandon Roy for Vince Carter in week two.  So without rambling on too much more I am going to use the power rankings format to make a list of my favorite NBA players and why.  I love the NBA and many of its players.  Some reasons are stupid, well most are, and players will move up and down from week to week.  So here is the first Favorite Player Power Rankings…

  1.  Vince Carter – Phoenix Suns

Vince was amazing as a high flying new star of the NBA and fulfilled my every need in an entertaining athlete.  It helps that Vince is a former Tar Heel like Jordan. As Air Jordan left Air Canada arrived and has held this top spot for a while now.

      2.     Derrick Rose – Chicago Bulls

Because of my love for Jordan, I obviously turned into a Bulls fan.  I enjoyed their dynasty as a youngin and suffered through many MANY years of the “baby bulls” with players like Elton Brand, Ron Artest, and Jamal Crawford entering and exiting.  When the Bulls were fortunate enough to get Rose at number 1 I was so pumped.  Now Rose is an MVP candidate, is a simply fun player to watch play, and carries himself like a pro.  There is nothing not to like about Rose and when he has your favorite team looking like a top team in the league its hard not to love the guy.

      3.     Monta Ellis – Golden State Warriors

Small guys doing amazing things is always enjoyable.  Monta is a little dude with a big game.  Speed, quicks, a smooth stroke, and a lot of hops are some of the things that Monta brings to the table.  I began to like Monta when I saw some youtube videos of him hitting over the head shots from the seats during practice.  To make him seem even cooler, he followed these shots up with a slick handshakes with what looked to be an arena employee.  Creative handshakes is always a plus, creative handshakes with non teammates is even better.  Monta has skyrocketed up to number three in just the last year.

      4.     Dirk Nowtizki – Dallas Mavericks

Dirkus Circus is one of those freaks on the baseketball court.  I guess in the real world all NBA players are freaks with their size and athleticism, but Dirk stands out amongst them.  He is a 7 footer that knocks down threes and has an outside game of a small forward.  When he lets his golden locks flow and his jumper is wet, he tempts me to put him near the top of this list.  For now Dirk is a little banged up, has short hair, and is hit or miss on his jumper.

       5.    Kevin Durant – Oklahoma City Thunder

Durant is one of the few guys that I, and the rest of us, got to watch a lot in college and knew he was going to be a star in the NBA.   Durant’s laid back team first attitude intrigues all of us.  Rarely does such a young kid with so much talent carry himself the way he does.  Durant is a unique player and makes my starting 5 for favorite players at the moment.

       6.     Wesley Matthews – Portland Trailblazers

I admittedly knew next to nothing about this guy this time last season.  Since he signed a big contract with a team I love to watch, Trailblazers, and is now getting a lot of minutes with half the team in suits during the game.  Wes can fill it up on any given night and flashes the three goggles which I am a HUGE fan of.

        7.     Matt Bonner – San Antonio Spurs

As a kid who grew up ( and still growing up I guess ) in the great state of New Hampshire, it is exciting when anyone or anything happens in New Hampshire.  Unlike most states across the country, New Hampshire rarely gets national attention aside from winter storms (sweet) and the Primaries.  The only thing rarer than NH making national news, is an athlete making it big from NH.  Matt Bonner is one of those guys.  After winning the NBA Championship Matt Bonner didn’t announce his plans of going to Disney Land, he excitingly proclaimed how he was, “Going to Canobie Lake Park”,  a staple for any New Hampshire resident.  Bonner has a sweet nickname (Red Rocket), a knack for sandwich making, and a decent game.  But mostly, Bonner is from New Hampshire.

         8.     Brandon Roy – Portland Trailblazers

This guy is clutch, underrated, and everytime I see the highlight of his game winner against Houston with the crowd going nuts I get the chills.  Roy is sooooo talented but just can not stay healthy anymore.  A healthy Roy could be in the top three on this list.

         9.     Gilbert Arenas – Orlando Magic

A couple seasons ago Gilbert was one of the best players in the NBA.  He had a humorous and insightful blog on, and about thirty anecdotes that made him the most loveable guy in the NBA.  Then injuries happened, the gun thing happened, and the silent Agent 0 happened.  If the original Gilbert comes back he could be my next Jordan.  Until that time, I will continue to display my autographed Gilzero’s and Agent 0 uni on my wall until he returns to glory.

         10.   Zach Randolph – Memphis Grizzlies

Randolph makes the top ten for me mostly because of fantasy sports.  Like Vince, Z-Bo has been a part of Jordan’s 3rd Comeback for every season of its existence.  Every year other owners pass on the automatic 18 and 12 and he falls right in my lap.  Z-Bo can barely jump over a dollar bill but remains one of the top rebounders in the NBA.

         11.    Steve Nash – Phoenix Suns

Nash is one of the most skilled ball handlers and creative players in the league.  Year after year people expect him to fall off yet he is quietly having one of his top seasons of his career.  Thanks to twitter his awesomeness has grown.  The many videos he has made have been comedic gold and definitely help him in these rankings.

          12.    Dwyane Wade – Miami Heat

You do not know how badly I wanted Wade to sign with the Bulls this past off season.  Wade carried a team on his back for a couple seasons and might be the best player in the NBA right now.  If he were on the Bulls he would probably have to be my favorite player right now.  His complete game is so much fun to watch and is THE reason I watch Heat games.

          13.     Brandon Jennings – Milwaukee Bucks

Fear the Deer!  Jennings at first was the guy that played in Europe for a year.  Now he is the skinny little lefty that lights it up in Milwaukee.  His double nickel a year ago caught my attention followed by his gumby hair cut during the All Star break. 

          14.     Kobe Bryant – Los Angeles Lakers

“Mamma there goes the man” Kobe plays, acts, and carries himself similar to Jordan and is close to catching him in titles.  He is just as competitive and fearless on the court.  The Black Mamba is the NBA and has been for some time.  I love this guy, and his lower jaw.

           15.     Luke Walton – Los Angelas Lakers

This one occurred mostly because of anti Walton talk from my friends.  I am always intrigued by NBA greats spawns in the NBA so I flocked to Walton once he hit the NBA.  Walton is an underrated passer and does the dirt dog stuff because he has to.  Hes not gonna win you a game, make the headlines, or even play minutes but I love when he comes in the game.  One of my friends hates Luke Walton so that only makes me “love” him more.  In 2K8 he was ridiculous from beyond the arch and won me some tight games in the dorms.

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Tyreke’s 20 points, 5 assist, 5 rebound average Leads him to Rookie of the Year

Posted by mvetack on April 30, 2010

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Say hello to the Gumby

Posted by mvetack on February 12, 2010

In an interview with the surprisingly not so flashy Craig Sager, Brandon Jennings revealed to the world his new “Gumby” hair cut.  Jennings said he was inspired by the movie, House Party. Jennings has already worn the cornrows and flat top this season, and now for his appearances in the rookie sophomore game and the skills challenge we get to see the “Gumby”.  I am really starting to like this Jennings guy.

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All Star Weekend Facts (ok maybe just predictions)

Posted by mvetack on February 11, 2010

Predictions are not the most original topic but they are fun to do and a good way to see how bad my diagnostic skills are.  Here is my prediction for every event, game, and mvp for this weekend in Dallas. (minus the celebrity game)

Rookie Sophomore Game
This contest consists of next to no defense, think Golden State, and plenty of shooting, think… well I guess Golden State, and is usually won by the sophomores.  It is not the most thrilling version of basketball but it is a decent way to start the three days of All Star festivities.  The most intriguing aspect of this game is it gives us a chance to see what a game would look like if the Warriors were able to play themselves.

Winner – Sophomores – Stacked team and experience, even in this type of game, seems to matter.
MVP – Michael Beasley – Rack up a lot of easy boards, get a bunch of flashy dunks and put backs, and he will probably knock down a couple treys.

Halftime Dunk Off
Contestants – Eric Gordon and DeMar DeRozan
Everyone in the basketball world has DeMar already advancing to the main event.  I really want to go with the supposed upset in Eric Gordon.  The hype around DeMar can easily turn on him and lead to disappointment among voters thinking he is going to give us quite the show.  Remember when Josh Smith put down the tape on the court from about three feet beyond the free throw line? Everyone got ready for him to do something spectacular.  He ignored the line and the fans ignored his dunk.  But, with that said, Gordon is playing in the Rook Soph game and may not have as much in the tank for some sensational dunks.  DeMar also seems to want this more and winning is a little more important.  Is this accurate? Possibly not but its just the vibe I am getting.  DeMar has probably practiced for this more than his actual Raptors games.

Winner – DeMar DeRozan

This is an event that has a lot of potential but, like last year, will disappoint many.  Just because these guys are NBA stars and you see youtube videos of them hitting crazy “horse” shots doesnt mean they can do them on demand.  Chances are they will try a couple trick shots and most if not all won’t fall.  After a couple tries one guy will start knocking down some long range shots and win the whole thing.  I’m hoping to see creativity throughout, even if it isn’t Jordan vs Bird McDonald’s style, to make it interesting.  Maybe some eyes closed, bounce shots, calling bank, half court heaves, pretty much I want to say wow at least two or three times.

Contestants – Kevin Durant (defending champ), Omar Casspi, Rajon Rondo
Winner – Kevin Durant – Rajon makes one or two trick shots but Durant’s range and length allows him to make shots that neither Rondo or Casspi can make.

Shooting Stars
No this is not the Three Point shoot out this is that one with the Ex NBA guy, current WNBA member, and Current NBA baller from the same city.  To me this contest comes down to making the half court shot.  Perfection through the normal shots means nothing if no one can knock down the half court heave.

Texas (home team) – NBA – Dirk Nowitzki, WNBA – Becky Hammon – Old Timer – Kenny Smith
Atlanta – NBA – Joe Johnson, WNBA – Angel McCoughtry, Old Timer – Steve Smith
Los Angeles – NBA – Pau Gasol, WNBA – Marie Ferdinand-Harris, Old Timer – Brent Barry
Sacramento – NBA – Tyreke Evans, WNBA – Nicole Powell, Old Timer – Chris Webber

Winner – Texas – Dirkus Circus lives for the half court shot.

Skills Challenge
The skills challenge is the one challenge I would like to try the most.  No incredible height or jumping skills are needed for this one and when you see a guy actually going at full speed in this thing it can be a beautiful sight to see.  Three of the four guys have won it before and one guy is a rook.  A very competitive field makes this one very tough to pick.

Contestants – Brandon Jennings, Derrick Rose (defending champ), Derron Williams, Steve Nash
Winner – Brandon Jennings – This will be the last part of All Star weekend that Jennings will be involved in and will try to make it count by giving the old college try.

3 Point Contest
The always exciting three point contest is second fiddle to the Dunk Contest, but many times has a more exciting finish.  The money ball is key but so is feeding off the crown and getting on a hot streak.  Pierce and Chauncey are clutch ( they will hit their money balls ) and Stephen Curry can certainly get on a hot streak and the crowd will probably get behind the rookie.  Curry’s young legs will go against one of the two grizzled vets in the finals.

Contestants – Chauncey Billups, Paul Pierce, Channing Frye, Stephen Curry, Danillo Galinari, Daquan Cook (defending champ)
Winner – Stephen Curry – Young legs prove victorious in this contest.

Dunk Contest
The true highlight of All Star weekend is the dunk contest.  The Dunk Contest has the ability to make bench warmers super stars for at least one night ( see 2007’s Gerald Green ).  With adjusted rules over the past couple years they seem to have it at a point where we wont get let down anymore.  Birdman’s 3,456,201 attempts was just stupid early on in the decade and so was Nate Robinson’s alley-oop madness a couple years later.  And I think the NBA destroyed all footage of the Dunk Wheel back when Stevie Francis was still relevant.

Contestants – Nate Robinson (Defending Champ), Gerald Wallace, Shannon Brown, DeRozan/Gordon winner
Winner – Shannon Brown – He can jump through the roof and is a smaller guy which always makes dunks look better in the open court.  Foot note – JE Skeets predicts Nate Robinson dropping out due to his nagging injury and LeBron stepping in.  If this happens there will be so much hype in the building that the roof may come down.  The hype will make any average dunk get near 10’s for LeBron and he will win.  Otherwise it is Shannon.

All Star Game
The last four games have swapped winners each year with the West winning last years game with Kobe and Shaq sharing MVP honors.  This year the West’s lineup looks better overall even though the East can put LeBron, Wade, Dwight, and Joe Johnson on the court at once.  The guard play of the West (Derron, Nash, and Chauncey) will have plenty of minutes and get in the flow of the game more than the young Rondo and Rose ( Unless one of the two is having an MVP like game, Rondo probably over Rose, don’t be surprised if LeBron runs the point in crunch time).

Winner – Western Conference – Limited Guards due to injury will help get guys big minutes (Derron Williams) and get into the flow of the game.  Duncan plays well down the stretch when some defense is played and Melo hits some big shots.
MVP – Derron Williams – Big minutes, knocking down threes, and tons of easy early assists give Derron MVP numbers.  LeBron could have biggest night but a losing effort will take his name out of the hat.

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