Points in the Paint

» August 6, 2009 7:48 PM | By Brandon Hoffman
  • Orlando Magic All-Star Rashard Lewis will be suspended for the first 10 games of next season because he tested positive for a testosterone-producing steroid. Tom Ziller reports that the steroid Lewis tested positive for, dehydroepiandrosterone, is legal in baseball. Ken Berger:  “Lewis getting suspended for 10 games without pay for violating the NBA’s drug policy isn’t Armageddon. This isn’t Mark McGuire, Sammy Sosa, or even Big Papi we’re talking about. If you’ve seen Rashard Lewis lately, Thin Lizzy is more like it. But what this should be is a cautionary tale for everyone — including David Stern — to file away in the memory banks. Every time he’s been asked about the NBA’s drug testing policy and its stance on performance-enhancing drugs, Stern has scoffed at any notion that the NBA has a steroids problem in any way, shape, or form. Eerily, the tone he uses in these forums reminds me of the dismissive tone he used in defending the integrity of his referees whenever it was questioned. Then, Tim Donaghy happened. I’m not saying that the equivalent of roided-up Donaghys are juicing up under the radar in the NBA. Hardly. But it’s wrong to assume that only bodybuilding, power lifting, football, baseball, track and field, and swimming have steroid problems. The marketplace for performance-enhancing substances is diverse, and there are hundreds, if not thousands of them readily available that do more than make your biceps blow up like party balloons.” Henry Abbott says players cannot claim ignorance to avoid punishment for the use of banned substances.
  • SI’s Chris Ballard has a few athlete-based reality shows I’d pay to see. Here’s one for Kevin Garnett: “…give me a show following Kevin Garnett during practice and pregame and timeouts, when he gets all bug-eyed and starts barking like a histrionic Doberman and harassing his teammates and opponents alike because he wants to win so goddam bad that he can’t control himself. Call it Kevin Garnett Has Your Motivational Speech Right Here!
  • Memphis Grizzlies GM Chris Wallace on why a smaller scouting department works:  “For about half the time I was in Boston, just myself and Leo Papile did the scouting.  We ended up drafting three guys that made the all-star team.  Later on, when we came up with the nucleus of the players that helped fuel the Celtics championship… We had a total of five people including myself, and Danny Ainge, and no regional scouts.  So, there are several different ways you can approach scouting: you can have all these different people in areas around the country, or you can consolidate the scouting in to the hands of a smaller group that are gonna be responsible for the success or failure of the actual decisions that a team makes.  We went the route of the smaller number of scouting efforts but we’re all doing the same thing we’ve done before.”
  • Tim Povtak on cutting the NBA’s schedule to 72 games:  “The problem is that neither the players nor the owners — especially not in these economic times — will voluntarily give up the revenue that would be lost by losing games. A typical NBA team makes an estimated $1 million in ticket revenues alone for each home game. An average NBA player, based on a $5 million annual salary, makes $61,000 per game.”
  • Christopher Reina:  “As proven by the success of the Spurs (twice-over), Cavaliers and Magic (thrice-over if you count the Chris Webber lottery), winning the lottery for potential Hall of Famers is the surest path to compete for championships. Even with Hall of Famers in tow, these three small-market clubs still need to play the high-roller game every bit as much as the Lakers or Celtics do in order to win. The champion in four of the previous six Finals had ‘hired guns.’ The Lakers had Pau Gasol in 2009, Boston had Kevin Garnett in 2008, Miami had Shaq in 2006 and Detroit had Rasheed Wallace in 2004. There wasn’t as much of that under the old CBA, though Houston was pushed over the top in 1994 and 1995 by an aging Clyde Drexler. Unless Brandon Roy and the Blazers can win the 2010 title a few years ahead of their intended schedule, every contender, including the Nuggets (see: Chauncey Billups trade), has done a major move taking on another team’s big ticket item.”

One Response to “Points in the Paint”

  1. Erick Says:

    Am I the only one that wants to punch China’s Vice Minister of Sports in the face?