Thursday, February 24, 2011

02/24 Quickie: Nets, Cards, More

The Nets' risk in trading for Deron Williams was totally worth it. Even if he goes to the Knicks (or Clippers or wherever) in a year an a half. Even if.

Because he is the best PG in the NBA. Because he allowed the Nets' new ownership to say "We're in." Because the new labor deal might make it favorable to him (and the team) for him to stay. Because he could be the chip to lure Dwight Howard to Brooklyn. And because there is likely more NBA immortality to be had by being Brooklyn's first NBA star -- presuming he can turn the Nets into contenders -- than there is doing it for the Clippers or, yes, the Knicks.

Derrick Favors might turn out to be great -- I'm bullish on him. But he might not. As Steve Politi wrote this morning in the Newark Star-Ledger: The chances of convincing Deron Williams to stay are better than the chances of Favors turning out to be as valuable as Deron Williams (even if you discount an expected value that takes into consideration that Williams might leave).

It was a phenomenal move, and Deron Williams should keep that in mind as he evaluates the franchise. Now, if they could just fire Avery Johnson, who is terrible and will do more to drive away Deron Williams than anything. (If Williams told Prokhorov to fire Johnson, Prok would do it in 5 seconds. Let's hope he does.)


Carmelo's Knicks debut: Yup, he shoots a lot. Yup, it turns out that Chauncey Billups might be the ultimately valuable piece of this. Yup, the game was an "event." Let's see what happens Sunday when Melo and the Knicks play a very motivated Heat in Miami.

Cards lose ace Adam Wainwright for the season: Oh, the Cards are so screwed. Presuming that their season is lost (and the future totally uncertain), it is in the best interests of the team to trade Albert Pujols -- and if Pujols cared about Cards fans, he would agree to be traded as a half-year "rental" to a contender in exchange for the massive stock of cheap talent that would help the Cardinals rebuild for a post-Pujols reality.

NFL combine starts today: As with the Senior Bowl, it lacks the Tebow storyline that was the gravitational force of last year's combine. But there is plenty to watch for: How does Cam Newton do? How does Patrick Peterson do? Who breaks through with eye-popping stats?

CBB: Marshon Brooks scores a Big East record 52 in Providence's loss to Notre Dame last night. It's amazing to think that in the glorious history of that league, no player has ever scored 52 -- not Chris Mullin or Walter Davis, not Allen Iverson, not Ray Allen, not Carmelo, no one. Pop over to Quickish and look for the post near the top with a 3-minute video of Brooks' scoring.

Tiger sucks, cont'd: Golf's big "match-play" bracket of the year -- the Accenture -- doesn't have quite the same vibe as the NCAA Tournament, so a "16-seed" beating Tiger Woods isn't that big of a deal. The bigger question: How on Earth does Tiger Woods earn a 1-seed? Golf rankings are absurd. Tiger isn't one of the top 4 golfers in the Accenture field based on his most recent "body of work." It would be like the NCAA Tournament Selection Committee giving Florida a 1-seed because they won the national title in 2006 and 2007.

Tennessee's NCAA problem: It's beyond Bruce Pearl committing an infraction days after crying an apology about his previous infractions. It's beyond the NCAA smacking down the football coach who isn't even there anymore. There is a culture of impropriety, and that starts at the top -- I'm with everyone else who thinks that Tennessee's AD should lose his job over this. But, hey, he makes the school a lot of money.

Stick with Quickish all day
for NBA trade-deadline mania, NFL combine reports and more.

-- D.S.

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