Until the other night I thought all the carping about the new ball was much ado about nothing. Rick Carlisle said the same thing on his radio show the other night. But seeing Vince Carter shoot a 3 pointer that should have clanked off the back of the rim (but instead died on the rim and rolled in) was the last straw. No basketball should do that and if it does they are playing a different game than I know.
Jermaine O'Neal recently expressed an interest in playing for Team USA. Jerry Colangelo's response: Thanks, but no thanks. Apparently its OK for Kobe to beg out for an injury, but not JO. Whatever. The Pacers are better off not sending JO.
It was nice to see the Knicks fans booing their team in last night's Pacer victory. I like nothing more than to see opposing fans boo their team. The corollary, is my strong believe that you should never EVER boo your own team.
By the way, I did appreciate Stephen "Whoo!" Jackson's approach last night. While Saras was taking his minutes, he was on the bench cheering. He also didn't argue when he was clearly fouled on a layup attempt, even though the Pacers shot ZERO foul shots in the first half.
Bill Simmons has an article on ESPN.com proclaiming his hate for the Colts. Go read it. Now, allow me to retort.
As if it weren't enough for Patriot fans to delight in the fact that they have beaten the Colts nearly every time (except last year), they've played . . . as if it weren't enough that the Patriots have three super bowl rings while the Colts have none . . . Simmons has to manufacture some outrage at the mere suggestion that Peyton Manning is comparable to Tom Brady.
This whole idea (which was repeated incessantly by Tony Kornheiser when the Patriots smacked the Vikings on MNF last week) that Tom Brady gets no respect and has no exposure is absolute BS. I think maybe Boston fans are unwittingly applying their Redsox underdog Pysche with the Patriots. You know the whole Redsox are David and the Yankees are Goliath. Simmons wrote a book about it! But guys, the Patriots are the Yankees of the NFL. The Patriots go out and beat everyone and yet their fans have to pull the whole whiny "no respect" crap. Maybe I'm biased, but even here in Indy it seems to me that Tom Brady gets plenty of exposure. True, he does not have the Mastercard commercials, but from what I understand, that is of his own doing. The idea that Peyton Manning is overexposed here in small market Indy seems pretty silly to me. Someone tell Simmons that the Colts aren't the Yankees - if they were playing on one of the coasts, then he'd know the true meaning of Manning overexposure.
Let's get back to the whole Manning-Brady debate. First, this is a worthwhile and interesting question. I would call it a close call, but in my opinion Manning is better. If someone tells me Brady is better, I am not going to act like its the craziest position ever taken. He's a great quarterback. But Simmons seems to think it is crazy that anyone could think Manning is better. His mantra? Well of course it is that Brady is 6-1 against Manning, has always beaten him in the playoffs and has three superbowl rings. Fair enough. But if that's going to be your only argument, then it really isn't between Manning and Brady. Ben Rothlesburger is the best QB, because his team won the Superbowl last year. And Jake Plummer is better than Brady, because the Broncos beat the Patriots last year.
But wait a minute, says Simmons. Rothlesburger and Plummer had better teams that day. It doesn't make them a better player. Exactly my point.
Look, even Simmons points out how awful the Colts defense is this year. And guess what, they've always been awful since Manning has been here. Even last year, when they put up good numbers, it was only because the Colts would go up huge on teams in the first quarter and then Freeney and Mathis could pin their ears back and Dungy could run his Cover 2 to create turnovers. We have the best prevent defense in the NFL. But when the games are close and teams can threaten run, our defense is absolutely awful. The worst in the league, as every commentator (including Simmons) reminds us.
Well, guess what. They're 7-0 with the WORST DEFENSE IN THE LEAGUE. What other QB could do that? Frankly, I don't think Brady could and that's the point. He's always, ALWAYS, has had the much better team than Peyton. So you really can't begin and end your argument with how good his record is against Manning. Teams win championships in the NFL, not players.
And if the Colts beat the Patriots tomorrow it will be for one reason and one reason only: Peyton Manning.
I have a very basic knowledge about nearly all the players in the league. There aren't too many players I that I can't give you some info on (e.g. their position, where they played college, etc.). However, every year I scan the opening day rosters and there are still guys I've never heard of. Here are those guys this year: Brian Chase, Robert Hite, Damir Markota and Marcus Vinicius and my personal favorite Yakhouba Diawara. Good luck fellas. Welcome to the League!
As a sub level cohort of the pacer pundit himself, I have been slacking in my co-posting duties as of yet....but that ends now. So with my initial post, and for that matter my first blog of any kind in my personal history I have this to say.....
Living in New Jersey affords me many things. Thick accents, "the shore", tight t-shirts and people that say "Yous".....but what it doesn't afford me is any way to watch preseason Pacer hoops. So any comments will strictly be based on box scores and the media. Quick hitters...
THE TEAM: Excited as hell, can't wait to see what comes of all the new faces, new athleticism, new style and I hestiate to say "new attitude"
THE "INCIDENT": Strip clubs are one thing...and not necessarily a wholy bad thing. But 3am strip clubs, with guns, during training camp and getting into it with others patrons is a completly different story. Idiots. Didn't like Jackson before, like him less now.
THE CUT: I like it. Yes he(White) was a draft pick we gave up potential talent for....and yes, he was projected to be a stud, and still may be, but I aplaud the decision as a smart one. No one needs 5 PG's, and based on his performance he just wasn't as ready to contribute as the rest. It was a basketball decision based on those who actually earned spots during camp. One could argue that Saras should have been on that bubble too, but god help me, I still have faith he'll get his mojo back.
THE OPENER: A bit scared. Our preseason was inconsistent both in roster and performance. And though preseason performance usually isn't a true indicator of a season, inconsistancy is as inconsistancy does.