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Archive for the 'No Math Required' Category

Layups: Hoop Stream iPhone App

4th August 2011

BBR reader Darko Sancanin just released a new iPhone app called Hoop Stream:

Hoop Stream

It's pretty cool -- you can use it to follow the Twitter accounts of all active players on a given team, plus retired players as well.

Be sure to check Hoop Stream out in the App Store, and go to Darko's site to see the other apps he's developed.

Posted in Layups, No Math Required, Offseason | Comments Off

Layups: Brent Barry Admires Hoopism’s Dunk Poster

24th May 2011

Remember Hoopism's sweet dunk contest history poster?

Awesomely enough, Brent Barry is a fan as well. And he's wearing the LAC warmup in the photos.

Posted in Just For Fun, Layups, No Math Required | Comments Off

For James, East Final Is an Ex-MVP’s Shot At Redemption

15th May 2011

For the first time in three years, LeBron James did not give an acceptance speech at the Most Valuable Player's press conference. Now, as he faces his successor at the podium, Derrick Rose, in the Eastern Conference Finals, James is hoping his Heat can do exactly what the Magic and Celtics did to him -- prevent the reigning MVP from advancing to the NBA Finals.

In the NBA, the Most Valuable Player carrying his team to the brink of a title is the rule, not the exception. Since the league began handing out the hardware in 1956, the MVP's team has appeared in the championship round 28 times, good for a 51 percent rate. And during the NBA's halcyon era of Magic, Larry, and Michael, the clip was even higher: from 1983-2003, the MVP made a Finals appearance in 16 of 21 seasons, more than 75% of the time. In a world where current players are largely measured against those three names alone, it makes headlines when a reigning MVP fails to reach the league's grandest stage.

Perhaps this is why the drought of recent winners has been met with so much scorn. Since 2004, only one MVP (Kobe Bryant in 2008) has led his club to the Finals. The others -- Kevin Garnett, Steve Nash, Dirk Nowitzki, and James -- flamed out in the Conference Finals (or in the cases of the latter two, earlier), provoking backlash from the Skip Bayless set and anyone else preoccupied with legacies or comparisons to long-retired legends. That it has been viewed as a blemish on James' otherwise staggering resume is undeniable.

Yet now he has a chance to inflict the same criticism on Rose, the youngest MVP in league history. It's strangely fitting, because their paths have run parallel ever since the Rose-for-MVP talk rose from a whisper at the lunatic fringe of Bulls fandom to a din heard across the entire country. In the wake of 'The Decision', the media tried to talk itself into casting Kevin Durant as James' foil, but Rose out-Duranted everyone, ranging from his own sharp improvement to the Bulls' unexpected #1 seed and the endearingly humble manner in which he carried himself (culminating in a truly beautiful moment at his MVP presser). In the minds of many, he embodied the yin to James' preening yang.

For these reasons, the media will doubtless go easier on Rose than they did James, should the Bulls' season end early. And by the same token, the fact that James felt he needed two other big names, one of whom is nearly his equal in the universe of NBA megastars, to reach the Finals again will continue to dog him if the Heat prevail. But even if his legacy cannot be fully repaired through victory, it's clear that in a twist of fate, the only way James can gain some measure of redemption for his "incomplete" MVPs of 2009 and 2010 is to stamp Rose's 2011 award with the same stigma.

Posted in Analysis, Awards, History, No Math Required, Playoffs, Rants & Ramblings | 123 Comments »

Layups: NBA Portraits – One Player from Every NBA Team

22nd March 2011

As part of the impressive 12 by 30 online art project, artist Dustin Watson is creating portraits of 30 NBA players (1 for each team). They're really great, so check them out at Dustin's blog -- or go to the 12 by 30 main site, go through each day #, and try to identify the players from their eyes alone before clicking to see the full pic. (Can you guess which option I chose?)

Posted in Just For Fun, Layups, No Math Required | 2 Comments »

Layups: Jalen Rose vs. Grant Hill

17th March 2011

Surely you've seen this already, but if not, a brief recap:

My take on this:

Hill was understandably upset and hurt by the statements Rose & his teammates made -- it's never easy to hear that people harbored negative feelings toward you because of factors that were beyond your control. But I think Hill missed Rose's point. In essence, Rose was giving voice to his mindset as a 19-year-old and how it motivated his play back then. And the level of honesty & self-examination with which Rose looked at those emotions was a meditation on Rose's own life more than a knock on Grant Hill. Though he doesn't come out and say it, it seems somewhat obvious that Rose no longer holds the same feelings, if not just from the fact that he now recognizes the true source of his resentment (Rose admits it came from a place of jealousy, not a hatred of Hill himself). That Hill seems unwilling or unable to make a distinction between feelings at 19 and feelings at 38 makes me wonder whether he or Rose has grown more as a person in the last 20 years.

Of course, that's just my opinion -- what's yours on this Jalen Rose-Grant Hill spat?

Posted in Layups, No Math Required, Rants & Ramblings | 106 Comments »

Searching For the NBA’s Version of the Charlie Sheen Fiasco

2nd March 2011

In the wake of the ongoing Charlie Sheen chaos, I was (of course) racking my brain to find a comparable NBA analogy. Ideally you'd want to find a situation with the following parallels:

  • It involves a winning team. Although I have personally never seen an episode, Sheen's show Two and a Half Men is apparently wildly successful, as Sheen is quick to point out to anyone who will listen. So any NBA equivalent would have to involve a good team, probably one that had been a contender for multiple years.
  • It involves that team's best player. Monetarily speaking, Sheen is the #1 scorer on Two and a Half Men, and in fact the league's top player -- he made $1.8 million/episode in 2010, making him the highest-paid actor on television. The basketball equivalent would have to deal with a similar star in his prime.
  • The team releases that player mid-season. Production on Two and a Half Men's 8th season was halted midway due to Sheen's behavioral problems, so an NBA version would have to involve a team waiving their best player in the middle of the season.

Unfortunately, there isn't a single situation in NBA history that meets all of those requirements. In fact, as far as I can tell, there are only a few remotely comparable situations:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Analysis, History, Insane ideas, Just For Fun, No Math Required, Rants & Ramblings | 21 Comments »

Layups: The NBA’s Greatest Shots

14th February 2011

From Hoopism, makers of the dunk contest video library and various other neat NBA visualizations, comes an extremely cool Valentine's Day gift for b-ball aficionados:

NBA’s Greatest Shots – Court Location & Video

Posted in History, Holidays, Insane ideas, Just For Fun, Layups, No Math Required, YouTube Finds | 2 Comments »

Layups: Every Slam-Dunk Contest Dunk

2nd February 2011

You gotta see this... Hoopism graphed every dunk in Slam-Dunk Contest history by year and judges' score, and put together an interface that allows you to call up video of the attempts from YouTube:

Every NBA Slam Dunk Contest Video Visualization - Hoopism.com

Amazing work... Hat tip to Henry Abbott for the link.

Posted in All-Star Game, Insane ideas, Just For Fun, Layups, No Math Required | 3 Comments »

Facebook “Like” Buttons on Player Pages

11th January 2011

In BBR news, Justin has added Facebook "Like" buttons to all player pages — meaning you can, at long last, declare your affection for guys like Terry Dischinger or Mookie Blaylock.

Have fun, and feel free to even go a little crazy with this...

Posted in Announcements, Just For Fun, No Math Required, Site Features | 8 Comments »

Layups: See the Space Jam Website, In All Of Its 1996 Glory

29th December 2010

Just saw this tweet from Darren Hoyt:

"the website for the movie Space Jam hasn't been updated since 1996 - http://j.mp/hMPQqG"

I'm so loving the 90s-era design of that page. Especially the pressbox page:

"No Spacejam news at the moment!"

As Michael Kerney tweeted, "If there's no Space Jam news now in the pressbox link, I'm pretty sure there's not gonna be."

Posted in Just For Fun, Layups, No Math Required, Totally Useless | 2 Comments »