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Just The Sports: Musings of a Bad Sports Writer

Just The Sports

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Musings of a Bad Sports Writer

Since I tried and failed to make sense of Peter Vecsey's article as he jumped from topic to topic with no thought of trying to make any coherent points, I really had no choice but to blog about it and point out again a sports writer who is bad at his job.

"I never had any trouble with Allen on the court," Brown's forked tongue spoke when the New York media questioned him about their impromptu love-in.

Impromptu? Really, Peter? I'm not at all sure you know what impromptu means. When Larry Brown and Allen Iverson speak to each other before a game or after, it is anything but impromptu. Contrary to Peter's opinion, Brown and Iverson have a great relationship with each other now. They may have not always been the case with them, especially in the early years of their player-coach relationship, but if anyone who has heard Larry Brown speak about Iverson can tell you, there is no doubt he truly respects Allen as a player and probably even loves him, too. As much as NBA coaches can truly love their players. And Iverson feels the same way about Larry Brown

Don't take my word for it, though. Here are a couple quotes from Allen Iverson about Larry Brown. The first comes from when Allen Iverson was on the Stephen A Smith Show and had just watched video footage of Larry Brown praising him as a basketball player and a person. The praise Brown gave him caused Iverson to become choked up on air. The second quote is from after Iverson learned Brown has been nominated to be head coach of the USA Basketball team.

"I always said that I wouldn't get choked up like that on TV. But I just couldn't help it. The things that [Brown] said about me, that's how I'm trying to live my life. That's how I'm trying to mold myself as a man, just try to do anything I can do to be a better person, then a better basketball player. So hearing those things from Coach, it just [affected] me..."

“I don’t think they could have chosen a better person for the coaching position. When you look at what he’s done in his career, he deserved it, he earned it. I’m just happy to see that they gave him the chance, and I just wish him well. I hope he does great!”

Usually, when people have a strong relationship bond like Brown and Iverson do, they are in the habit of holding a conversation with each other.

I see, so being late for team meetings, not practicing and cursing out the coach when removed momentarily from games are offenses unrelated to the court.

Actually, Peter, they are. Team meetings aren't usually held at half-court or anywhere else on the basketball court. Instead, professional basketball teams prefer to hold the meetings in actual rooms where they are, you know, televisions to watch film on or dry erase boards to draw up plays on. Also, not practicing means Iverson was not showing up anywhere near the 76ers' practice courts so the offense was not really related to the court. Lastly, cursing out a coach after being removed from a game technically means the players is on the sidelines and no longer on the court so once again, the offense cannot be described as a court-related one. Yes, I'm well aware I'm nitpicking.

Some 19 campaigns before, a lost soul named Bernard King averaged 32.9 points for your 24-58 Knicks. Unfathomably, such regular-season prowess wasn't enough to get Hubie Brown's Bombers into the postseason party.

Why am I bringing up the scoring leader/no playoffs correlation this very day?

I really have no idea. Unless you are going to present some evidence of other players who are leading the league in scoring and have no chance at making the playoffs.

Because the stars might be aligning that way once again. Entering this weekend, Kobe Bryant (35.1 ppg) and Iverson (32.9 ppg) were 1-2 in the points race. No surprise; they've been that way just about since the gate opened.

The question you asked, Peter, is why you brought up the correlation between leading the league in scoring and failing to take a team to the playoffs. Yet, in the following sentences of the same paragraph where you asked the question, you failed to answer your own question.

What is unique is that while Iverson's Sixers have sunk into the Schuylkill River, Bryant's Lakers plausibly could join 'em. Philly (at Chi last night) had lost its last three games and was 3-10 since last melding with mediocrity at 31-31.

First, that is not unique at all. Lots of teams endure last-season collapses. Second, mediocre teams are not .500 teams. .500 teams are average teams. Mediocre teams are teams with records below .500. Third, while this is the next paragraph in your article, you still have not given any evidence to support a correlation, either negative or positve, between players who are scoring leaders and those same players not making the playoffs.

Since Peter took too long to answer his own question, I will provide the answer myself. Of the NBA's top five scorers, four will definitely make the playoffs. The only one who is in any doubt is Allen Iverson, whose 76ers team is right now tied with the Chicago Bulls record-wise at 35-41. If it comes down to tiebreakers, though, the Bulls will end up with the 8th and final playoff spot.

So the answer to the question is there seems to be a positive correlation this season between a player being among the league leaders in scoring and his team's chances of gaining post-season entry.


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