Sunday, July 25, 2010

T-Mac closer to signing with Bulls

ESPN's Marc Stein reports today that the Bulls have agreed to sign Knicks G/F Tracy McGrady pending a few circumstances, the first being a workout he will perform Monday (tomorrow) afternoon. The other may be the more relevant issue however. Mcgrady has floated around a bit towards the end of his career, and has had problems with playing time and how many shots he gets; most recently playing under Mike D'tanoni's run and gun offensive style in the garden. The seven-time all star still believes he can return to his elite form, but he will have to convince the Bulls that he is OK with accepting a role off the bench.
McGrady has "tweeted" his interest in going to the windy city and it appears he may be getting that chance. Stein's source states that he believes a deal will be set by the end of the week.
Mcgrady fits well into Chicago's offense, and although the Bulls are asking him to be 'OK' with coming off the bench, he still could land the starting spot at two guard if he impresses enough. He showed signs of the old T-Mac, who was a childhood favorite of Bulls PG Derrick Rose, while playing in New York but a 9.3 ppg average won't cut it if McGrady wants to have the ball in his hands.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Leaving the Desert For Warmer Weather?

What do Carlos Boozer, Kyle Korver and Ronnie Brewer all have in common? Besides the fact they each are now members of the Chicago Bulls organization, all three were teammates last season in Utah wearing Jazz uniforms.
In the '08 playoffs, under the reigns of Jerry Sloan, the Jazz  made it all the way to the Western Conference Finals before being bounced by the soon-to-be champion (now repeat champions) Los Angeles Lakers. And throughout the Jazz' impressive run, in which they defeated heavier favored contenders such as the Suns and Spurs, Boozer, Korver and Brewer were all solid contributors on a nightly basis. Boozer was a 20/10 star alongside PG Deron Williams, the 3-point specialist Korver hit big shot after big shot, and Brewer was the team's best defender who was in charge of containing guys like Ginobli and Bryant.
Apparently, all three like their chances elsewhere after several years of falling short of their and every other team's goal; winning an NBA championship.  In adddition, they all are sticking together and as of last week, all three will be wearing a Bulls uniform for the 2010-11 season.
Some may see it as a tough decision leaving a team coached by future hall of famer Jerry Sloan that makes the playoffs year in and year out in a much tougher and more competitive Western Conference for a team like the Bulls who have struggled to find their identity and are somewhere in between that rebuilding and "we can compete" stage.
Whatever the reason, the Bulls have improved this off-season. Yes, Lebron and Bosh were first priority but  you cant count out what Gar Forman, John Paxson and Jerry Reinsdorf have put together. It may not have been ideal free-agency period of a lifetime, but they did what every team seeks to do. Improve.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Stranger Than Fiction

Earlier this morning I was at a car wash applying for this summer-job gig, and espn was on the TV hanging  from the ceiling. Of course, the focus was on Lebron James and the "special edition" sportscenter that will air tonight at 9 o clock dedicated solely to James and his decision on where to play next season. I started to think to myself and put myself in his and other big name free agent's shoes. Most people, like myself, have to go out looking for jobs and fill out application after application in order to become employed.  Even some guys in the NBA who have to work themselves in developmental leagues and can't afford big agents have to go out looking sometimes. And many people sympathize with James and others saying this whole process is so stressful and what not; but how bad can it really be?
None of them (James, Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh, Amare Stoudemire, and many many more)  have to look or do anything really.  All they have to do is think. Think about which city would be more fun to live in and what team has the best pieces to win a championship.  Damn, I can't even imagine the stress levels. In all seriousness though, if having every media outlet suffocate you for a week and a half on what your next move will be is just too much to handle, I would think that one could find some comfort in knowing that your about to get paid hundreds of millions of dollars and that every team with deep enough pockets are fighting like dogs over scraps for you.
Me, I don't sympathize with them for a second. I envy them. The world can be a cold, cruel place and luckily enough for select individuals they will never be able to remove their heads out of the fame, fortune; the clouds.'s Bill Simmons wrote an interesting column this morning on why this summer's epic free agent period has somewhat of a fake ring to it, check it out

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Boozer a Bull?

Chris Broussard and other members of the espn insider crew have been busy guys for the last week and a half. And sleepless nights and excessive cell phone minutes are only the beginning.
Earlier this evening, Broussard reported that the Chicago Bulls have agreed to terms of around 5 years with free agent forward Carlos Boozer. Boozer, a 8-year veteran who has played his entire career so far in Utah, is clearly the Bulls final push to land Lebron James, who will announce his decision tomorrow night at 9pm on his very own 1-hour special edition of sportscenter.
Boozer brings the low-post threat the Bulls have longed for, and adds to the already strong core of the teams' current active roster that includes Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah and Luol Deng.  Hopefully (not for me at least, but for Bulls management) that Boozer makes the Bulls roster that much more appealing, and a deciding incentive to choose Chi-town as his future home.

Crunch Time

The deadline is approaching. You know, the pre-set deadline Lebron James made last week. He promised that his decision would not come until after his 3-day Nike Basketball Skills Challenge camp ended, and apparently he's a man of his word.
The camp will conclude later this evening, and James has teamed-up with espn for a "special" sportscenter at 9pm tomorrow night solely dedicated to "Decision 2010." It was originally predicted that James would be the first to sign, and that his decision would go far in determining where other notable free agents like Chris Bosh, Dwayne Wade, Carlos Boozer and David Lee would end up.  However, this morning espn's Chris Broussard reported that Wade will remain in Miami, and that all-star forward/center Bosh would be joining him. They even already have a dual-press conference set up for this afternoon @ 3pm.
So what does that mean for the Bulls? Well, once again, the guys upstairs did a piss-poor job. It's pathetic and frustrating for the fans. The Bulls were pretty much penciled in to land Bosh, and they even had Dwayne Wade coming back several times for meetings about playing in his hometown. But apparently they didn't do enough. Heck, Wade even said one of the biggest factors for him was the current custody case he's battling with his ex-wife. The funny thing about it is that his kids are in Chicago.  Once again, the Bulls flopped. Horribly. Landing a duo of Bosh and Wade would be epic. They would automatically be contenders and maybe even favorites to win the east. They were supposedly the team that was suppose to come out on top of every other organization with enough dough to land top names, and already, 3 out of the top 4 have either committed or signed (Amare Stoudemire/Knicks, Wade & Bosh/Miami).
For the last decade or so, the Bulls have been experts at this. By this I mean off-season flops. Whether it's draft picks (up until the last 4 years at least), or free agent signings (Jalen Rose in '06, Malik Rose & Ben Wallace in '07), the Bulls front office has been down right awful. Even the coaching decisions have been less than par. Nobody wanted to see Scott Skiles go, and it happened at the most random time possible. Look what he's now done in Milwaukee.
The bottom line is that the Bulls need to get on their grind. They've just gone along with the idea that, "oh, this is Chicago, somebody will pick to come play here," instead of actually pulling up their sleeves and making players like Bosh and Wade feel wanted or desired.
Lebron could still pick Chicago, yes. But he won't. He'll make the smartest decision of his career and stay in Cleveland.  Heck, maybe the Bulls will even help them out and let Carlos Boozer slip away too and go to Cleveland which would surely please the coined king.
Personally I haven't wanted James to go to Chicago the whole time, but I also predicted that he would remain in Cleveland. And now only time will tell. Let the countdown begin I guess. I plan on just sleeping until 5pm so that I don't have to sit throughout the day dreading "Decision 2010."

Thursday, July 1, 2010

I, I Get It....

First, listen to this song that as of July 5th (according to his own personal-set deadline), will officially be Lebron James' theme song.  I, I GET IT.

When LBJ can officially ink a new era and chapter in NBA's history and sign with a team on July 8th, his revenue will expand beyond the insane endorsement checks and a max contract that will be tops in the league.

What James is currently going through is something he can finally say he conquered that neither MJ or Kobe Bryant could. He is more than wanted in every city. He's coveted. Has the NBA ever had a player like this before? One that is more influential and has a bigger impact than a governor? Heck, even state politicians and mayors have jumped in the 'Lebron Sweepstakes' and made attempts to lure the phenom to their city. There have been rap songs released where the most popular artists from different cities like Chicago, New York, L.A., etc. where they are trying to convince 'the king' to join their team. Don't believe me? LISTEN
The man is a giant. He will shatter a collection of NBA records while at the same time be transforming into the most expensive individual on the planet.

He hasn't even one a championship yet. is going to climb. Hopefully he makes the right decision and does it for the city of Cleveland where he started. It will only make him look better and the whole town might actually get him a crown and bow at his feet. At least in my book, going to Miami in a package with Chris Bosh is a cop-out. Who wouldn't expect the best player on the planet to win several championships on a team that includes Dwayne Wade (arguably the second-best on the planet) and a perrenial all-star in Bosh?
I still hope he never gets a ring, but he can at least prove me wrong if he does it in  Cleveland. I've said all along he hasn't proven squat and that he won't get a ring without a lot of help. But at the same time, even that might not get him his first ring.

Imagine if he were to join Wade in Miami along with Bosh. What would people say? It would go down as the team was still Wade's, and that he set the whole thing up. And I think Lebron won't take that chance. He wants to be the man, and they already have one down in the Miami heat. He needs the spotlight and a great portion of it, and he wouldn't get the credit that he wants if he were to succeed in Miami.