Archive for July, 2012


31 Jul

Last week, I posted an entry of what I considered to be the 10 least funny people in Hollywood. Unsruprisngly several people have confronted me (likely they are the same people who pay money to see the crappy works of said unfunny members of Hollywood) and called me everything from a hater to someone who does not appreciate humour.

I quickly countered by stating that I am in fact not a humor hater, and that I in fact love it very much. The point of my article was to implore Hollywood to return to times of yore, and stomp out the trash that passes for humor these days.

To further my non-hater I case, below I have not only compiled a list of the top ten people I actually considered funny, but the 15 or so movies I alluded to in my previous entry as being truly comic (sadly, the only movies that merit the standing in the last 30 years).

Once more I am not a hater (ok maybe I am a little), and here are your lists,


TOP 15 COMEDIES (in no particular order)

1. Coming to America

2. Trading Places

3. Beverly Hills Cop (1-2)

4. The Hangover (Franchise)

5. Superbad (my girl LOVES this movie ;) )

6. Wedding Crashers

7. Dumb and Dumber

8. Borat, Cultural Stylings of whatever…

9. American Pie

10.Ghostbusters (Franchise..gotta love that Vigo)

11.Tommy Boy

12.Rush Hour


14.Office Space

15.Brewster’s Millions

16.Silver Streak*

*Richard Pryor Bonus

Top 10 Most Funny People in Hollywood (in some particular order)

1.Bill Hader- funniest man alive and amazingly underrated

2.Kristen Weig- funniest woman alive and only now getting the recognition she is due. I however was a fan from Day 1

3.Daniel Tosh- he might be misogynistic and racist, but he is still incredibly talented

4. Chris Rock- The man is ha-ha funny but, more than that he is incredibly insightful and the greatest living social commentator of our day. If he ever learns to translate his talent to the big screen there will be no stopping him

5. Eddie Murphy- Doesn’t have to do another damn thing and he will never fall out of the top 5

6. Ken Jeong- He has got brains, he is incredibly funny, and he created the funniest “character” in movie history what more could anyone ask for? Oh ya right a bigger wang. Sorry Ken

7. Dave Chappelle- Just because he lost his mind does not mean he is not funny. My friend Ram and I were discussing it and agreed that his perfect comeback would be in the inevitable Trading Places re-make playing Murphy’s Valentine part, with Ed Helms playing Dan Ackroyd’s immortal Winthorpe part

8. Louis C.K. -People love this guy and he is definitely ok, but to me he is the white and poorman’s version of Chris Rock

9. Jonah Hill- unlike Jack Black he actually succeed’s in the fat and funny department. Not only that but he even excels when he’s thin like he did in 21 Jump Street. Look at that range, move over Joe Pecsi

10. Seth Rogan -genuinely funny, but in his shotgun approach to movie making he has dropped some turds. However, steering clear of any more projects with Adam Sandler is probably enough of a career catalyst.

11.Tina Fey- I was never a huge fan of 30 Rock because it seemed like it a televised version of the Naked Gun crossed with  Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip (I was not a fan of either project), but Fey is funny and her Palin impression although excessive, is worth of submission to the National Library of Movie Preservation (or whatever that thing is called where they send really good entertainment projects).*

*My Girl Also Recommended She Appear on the List Bonus

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Top Ten Least Funny People In Hollywood

17 Jul

 Looking for a light and humorous movie to watch this weekend, my girl and I started flipping through our catalogue of movies at home and one thing became increasingly apparent as we did, there are not a lot of funny movies out there. In truth, while we were impressed with the number of quality dramas there were in the 500 movies we have at home, of these 500 movies there were maybe only 10 solid comedies in the bunch and 8 of them we have seen pretty recently. Miraculously, we found a DVD that contained both Beverly Hills Cop 1 and 2 on it, and as soon as we hit play it looked like the weekend was saved.

I love Eddie Murphy and always have. From the time I was 8 years old and my parents and I watched Coming-To-America together I have remained pro-Murphy (ok maybe their decision to have me watch that at 8 was suspect but I think I turned out alright). Even in the dark days of the mid-nineties, and with the sporadic hit and misses of today I stayed true to the school of Murphy, because with the exception of Chris Rock and Richard Pryor, no one can make you think and make you bust a gut the way Murphy can.

While my wife was wary of a Murphy movie because she was born a little outside of Murphy’s prime (J), I had an ear-to-ear grin when that Beverly Hills Cop DVD emerged out of nowhere. However, when the movie commenced this strange sadness came over me and I couldn’t believe I was getting depressed. I knew I was not getting depressed because for some stupid reason like thinking I was starting to outgrow Murphy or had any doubt in his comedic genius even though its twenty years 23 years since I first became a fan, but rather it was related to my earlier search for decent comedy which turned into a prolonged effort even though we had over 500 movie titles to choose from. As I continued to think about it I was racking my brain to desperately come up with any other comedies that we were lacking at home and by the time Victor Maitland was blown away, I still could not. We had them all and there were only about 15. Fifteen movies in the entire contemporary age of cinema!! And even though my definition of the contemporary age of cinema is 1980 for comedies and 1970 for dramas, the comedy draught is still terrible given that its been 32 years and there are only maybe 15 comedies worth remembering. How can this be? Is it Eddie Murphy’s fault that he does not make 50 comedies a year? Doubtful. Is it Richard Pryor’s fault that his drug addiction ended his career prematurely? Maybe. Is it Chris Rock’s fault that while he is an amazing stand-up he has not translated that ability to the big-screen yet? Possibly. Or is it Hollywood’s fault for paying every two bit no talent-comedian who tells “half-jokes” , fortunes to make what seems like the same shitty ass movie over and over ? To quote inspector Todd, “You damn right it is.”

While Hollywood has rightfully taken heat in recent years for its terrible selection of movies which seem to be composed of nothing more than the regurgitation of old ideas (the reboot and the sequel), kid friendly visually appealing big budget larks (the Disney/Dreamworks Cartoon and the Comic Book Franchise), the ill-conceived original idea that failed miserably (the John Carter and the Battleship, which by the way I still contend was fashioned with the leftover CGI from the Transformers franchise), and of course the terrible comedy.

While there is the occasional original gem (usually attributable to one of Martin Scorsese, Christopher Nolan or James Cameron), by and large the world of movies stinks and has for some time. And sadly if you love to laugh like me, things are perhaps most bleak within the realm of the funny.

I could continue to cry about the state of comedies today or I could point hold my breath for Eddie Murphy to start making movies again (because even his worst movie is still better than anyone else’s best), but rather than harm myself, I will release my burning inner scorn and point my finger at those in Hollywood’s most responsible for the terrible state of comedy, the movie studios and the Hollywood big-wigs the people paid by the movie studios and the Hollywood big-wigs who  take millions and turn out lame ass uninspired effort after lame ass uninspired effort.

I’m pissed.

I’m choking on my own rage so I will try and keep the hate short.



10. Paul Ruud

Ruud makes the list not because he is terribly unfunny, but because he isn’t really funny at all. In fact, couldn’t Rudd be replaced with about any white guy aged 18-45? What is so special about him that makes him privy to millions of dollars and the ability to keep getting cast as the lead in almost every other comedy? Oh right, Mavel Tov Mr. Rudd.

9. Jerry Seinfeld

Please do not get me wrong, I loved Seinfeld (the show). During the 90s there was no bigger Seinfeld fan then me and I still watch Seinfeld as it continues its amazing run on syndication. However, it has been years since Jerry Seinfeld did anything remotely close to the levels he attained in the mid-90s and even more troubling, given Larry David’s tremendous success on Curb Your Enthusiasm, it makes you wonder  whether or not it was David and not Seinfeld (the person) who was responsible for the success of Seinfeld (the show).

I will always root for Seinfeld, but unless he does something funny in the near future, unlike Billy Mumphries’ enthusiasm, mine will have to remain bridled.

8. Wayans Brothers

When it comes to a body of work, these guys have assembled probably the worst roster in the entertainment business of anyone not named the Toronto Raptors. The movies they star in and worse, the movies they are responsible for as producers, are the lowest forms of entertainment imaginable and come in one of two forms; trite and un-original or terrible spoof.  However, whatever form they come in you can always count on them tonot be funny.

Why aren’t the Wayans brothers higher on this list? Well they seem to have cooled on their penchant for making movies lately. So shhhhh….

7.  Dane Cook

When I heard that Dane Cook’s business manager had ripped off him off to the tune of about $12 million dollars I couldn’t help but feel a little sorry for the guy. What’s worse is that that the scum who ripped him off was his own half-brother, and what something like that happens within one’s own family it definitely blows (you expect the rest of the World to rip you off, but never expect it from your own family).

However, despite my empathy for Dane Cook , it quickly started to fade when I realized two things. The first was that this financial hit would only result in a oversaturation of Dane Cook products and appearances in a Nicholas Cage-esk desperate attempt to sign on to every project no matter how terrible in order to recoup the financial loss. The second is that Dane Cook is already terrible and so the thought of how much lower he could go in his desperate cash grab mode  both frightened and disgusted me to the very core.

If I were as terrible as Dane Cook instead of agreeing to sink to even lower depths with even worse humorless efforts, I would announce my retirement and hope that my tale of family deception was enough to launch a best-selling book that could hopefully be optioned into a blockbuster movie. The only problem with this plan is that Dane Cook would probably be the only person terrible enough to play Dane Cook.

6. Luke Wilson

While I briefly debated putting him on the list, given his entrenched presence in Hollywood and suspect performances which barely elicit a snicker I quickly wised up.

When it comes to humour there is certainly a difference between un-funny and not funny. The latter is someone who tries really hard to be funny and even though they cannot make anyone laugh, at least they are giving it their painful-to-watch best effort. The former however is a someone who does not try to be overly humorous, and in the Hollywood sense is just content on submitting an uninspired and ultimately non memorable performance. This sums up Luke Wilson to a tee as he (like Paul Rudd) is able to hang around Hollywood for years despite the fact that not only can 50 million guys do what he does, but no one ever really remembers anything he does. Even though I wasn’t a fan of ‘Old School’ Luke Wilson was the lead in this movie that was many acclaimed by many, but does anyone remember anything funny or notable he did in it? The answer is no, and what’s worse is that its probably his best movie.


5. Ben Stiller

If Luke Wilson is un-funny, then Ben Stiller definitely is not funny. I do not know how many more award shows we are going to have let him ruin before we give him a pat on the back and say “there-there”, but his horrible efforts coupled with the crickets from the audience manage to make even me feel bad for a guy who probably takes in $10-15 million dollars a ( terrible) movie. Remember what I said about painful to watch, that is this guy to a tee, especially on live t.v.

4. Seth MacFarlane

If you are someone who knows me, you know that I will watch almost anything that’s on T.V. Even shows that stretch back to the 80s I am often right there watching them over and over (The Cosby Show, Golden Girls Matlock mark me down, I’m down). However, despite my love for the idiot box there is one show that is too idiotic even for me to watch (and thanks to my wife it isn’t Keeping Up With the Kardashians or the Bachlorette), and it is of course Seth MacFarlane’s Family Guy (and its terrible and even less amusing derivatives The Cleveland Show and American Dad). 

Despite the facts and my cynicism in general, I actually have a lot of faith in society and consider myself an optimist overall.  But the popularity of this show coupled with the MacFarlane’s ability to keep getting paid for churning out new and crappier crap (sorry that’s the only way I can describe it) that is lowest brand of desperate shock humor this side of Howard Stern is mind boggling. It has shaken my belief in everything.

I have faith though, if they could cancel Family Guy once (or two or three times), hopefully they can do so again. I very rarely make public appeals, but I desperately asking the critics to continue to blast the dregs that are Seth MacFarlane’s Family Guy brand and implore the masses to wise up and turn off this drivel.

3. Jack Black

Ok, we are now at the part of the list where I look at the biggest offenders and here is where I start to get mean.  I want good comedy back so call this tough love or an intervention or whatever. When Chris Farley tragically died in the mid-90s there was a void left in our hearts for the likable chubby funny man, who screams and falls down. In attempting to fill this void countless tubs have tried their best, but through the power of his network and Hollywood connections his various efforts it appears that Jack Black has temporarily taken the job. The only problem is that he forgot the likeable and funny part. I don’t know how exactly Jack Black has managed to escape the limitations of his own talent which should be confined to playing the unlikable 42nd lead (like he did in The Jackal), but for whatever reason be it his close association with Hollywood power-players or the genuine absence of funny people in Hollywood, Black has somehow thrust his fat gut into the spotlight and managed to stay there far longer than he should have.

Jack Black is not funny and his terrible repertoire of movies should provide more than enough evidence for anyone who questions my conclusions. In fact the only thing more repulsive than Jack Black’s comedic performances on screen  is Jack Black himself. If he doesn’t look like a fat midget with T-Rex arms and a face even his mamma couldn’t beat off with a broom handle then I don’t know anything. Told you I was going to be mean..I didn’t want to be but Hollywood you have left me with no choice.

2. Adam Sandler

Where to begin with Adam Sandler? Are there even enough words to describe my disdain for him? How does a guy whose Rotten Tomatoes movie average looks like the temperature in Antarctica (and on the Celsius scale mind you) keep getting green-lit by Hollywood studios?? And more importantly how is he paid 20 million a picture for the lame-ass turds he churns out???

While there are many questions one can ask when it comes him, the only one that matters is has Adam Sandler ever made me laugh? The answer is of course no. A grim, resentful, absolute no.  What does it say about not just Hollywood but the World when a no-talent moron like Sandler can use the same high pitched effeminate voice over and over in movies and still remain socially relevant for over 15 years??

While critics and true fans of not just comedy, but film, have done their part in blasting Sandler for each subsequently worse dud he puts out, Hollywood (and apparently the moronic executives at Sony Pictures seems satisfied to keep following the same business model and giving his projects the go ahead. To their credit it appears to be quite the ingenious scam. Give Sandler 20 million, put another 10 million into the rest of the project and then put together an aggressive marketing campaign (that probably doubles the cost to make the movie) in order to saturate the market and annoyingly convince the masses to come check out the movie. What happens? Well much like the beautiful woman who succumbs to a geek’s relentless advances and says what the hell, the audiences finally say what the hell, go to see Sandler’s crap and probably feel worse than a hot chick who gives up the 15 minutes of pity sex.

In sum, Adam Sandler is the biggest scam ever perpetrate on the North American public and unless the moon landing is revealed to have taken place in the basement of CIA headquarters, will remain so. I dislike Sandler with every fibre of my being, but his occasional flicker of dramatic talent saves him from the number one spot on this list. That spot can and must be reserve for someone who is truly talentless.

1. Will Ferrell

Will Ferrell why are you so bad? You seem like a nice enough guy, one who I would have no problem with if you were my neighbor or went to school with. But boy how your movies suck. Your overly anxious but eager, slow-witted (but ultimately not funny) schtick is more tired than Christian Bale’s character in the Machinest and your “half-jokes”, jokes that aren’t quite funny but make you feel like you have to force a smile, have gotten so lame that it seems that members of your own “Frat Pack” seem not to want to get on screen with you.  Of all the people on this list your movies and your performances in them are the worst because with the exception of maybe Sandler, your entire delivery remains the same regardless of the movie you are in.

Think I am being too rough? Well its not just me, the World seems to have grown wise to Ferrell and his propensity for terrible movie making as he was recently ranked as Hollywood’s most overpaid star by Forbes ( and his recent movies, with the exception of the Mark Wahlberg co-headlined The Other Guys, have all tanked at the box-office.

Do the mounting criticisms and poorly performing efforts of lame, and dare I say boring, comedians like Sandler and Ferrell mean that perhaps this terrible and painfully unamusing age of comedy are coming to an end? I do not know for sure, because if these guys have been able to hang around like cockroaches despite the nuclear blasts they receive from critics, maybe they can withstanding anything. But I am certainly hoping. And you should too.

I close by saying that despite the vitriol I have hurled at the names on this list I am not a hater, at least not in general. But I and millions of movie goers like me have had enough. Not can I no longer turn a blind eye to talentless hacks who are getting paid millions to do the same lame ass thing over and over, but I am starving for something better. Although it might seem like it, we are not asking for much.

All we want as consumers of entertainment is that when it comes to comedy, just give us a product that has an interesting premise, some clever and engaging acting, a few quality jokes and a decent story that maybe has some social commentary that makes you think after the credits have rolled (think Trading Places, think Brewster’s Millions).

For the amount of we money drop at the box-office I don’t think this is asking too much.

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11 Jul

Would you hire the kid who mows your lawn to be the head of your landscaping company? How about the person that works the pump at one of your gas stations to be the head of your oil and gas exploration entreprise? The answer is certainly no right, at least not without years of higher education, training and on the job performance evaluation? Unfortunately, for whatever reason this logic does not translate into the world of sports as there seems to be a steadily increasing number of former players in the front office. When it inevitably goes bad, the system is blamed and execs line up to cover their mistakes by point the finger at things like “the minimum draft age”, “the CBA”, the allegation that “small-markets cannot compete” etc. Balderdash!! The real reason so many teams have so many problems is because nepotism and/or favoritism is rampant and you are stuck with a bunch of underqualified people running your multi-million (and in some cases billion) franchises. While there certainly are exceptions like Jerry West and Joe Dumars circa 2003, the vast majority of former players do not possess the skill set necessary to run a sports franchise. Below is a list of the top five.


While Magic Johnson is perhaps best known for his electric on-court performances, no-look passes and jump hooks, his manouevers off-the court have been far less impressive. In fact, Magic’s million dollar smile should be renamed the “billion dollar” smile as many people believe he made his ownership group overpay in their quest to attain the L.A. Dodgers by about a billion dollars. When you add the fact that former owner Frank McCourt still retains about half of the parking lot concession, Magic’s questionable purchase goes from head scratching to mind blowing.


Of all the former athletes who have failed in their front office attempts Isiah’s debacle is probably the most publicized of them all. And rightfully so. In his 5 year tenure as President of Basketball Operations/General Manager and coach for the Knicks, “Zeke” was able to compile the second worst record in the league while simultaneously having the league’s highest payroll (2005-06), dealt away several coveted draft picks in talent heavy drafts to Chicago only to acquire Eddy Curry in return and agreed to take on some of the worst contracts in recent history by agreeing to acquire headcases like Zach Randolph and overpaying for bench fodder like Jerome James and Jerrod Jeffries. Couple these atrocities with the heinous publicity and 11.5 million dollars he cost the franchise as result of the sexual harassment lawsuit he provoked, and it is no wonder why the name Isiah Thomas still incites rage amongst many-a-New Yorker.


On the field John Elway was known as one of the most resilient quarterbacks of all-time and perhaps most notably, for his ability to turn nothing into something. Off the field however, it seems like he is poised to do the exact opposite. After years of mediocrity and being out of the media spotlight, Tim Tebow despite his questionable mechanics, was able to turn it around for the Broncos as he was able to awaken his team’s defense, make the big play when it counted and turned in one of the most talked about NFL seasons in league history with his penchant for winning in the clutch. When the season was over however, despite Tebow’s ability to turn around the franchise in less than year, Elway in almost Judas like fashion turned on Football Jesus and made it his mission to dump Tebow at the first opportunity he got. In fact, Elway’s zeal to get rid of Tebow was so great that all he got for the most talked about player in the NFL, was pennies on the dollar. In fact, all they got from the Jets was a fourth and sixth rounder in exchange for Tebow and a 7th rounder.

If the handling of the Tebow situation was not enough of an epic blunder on its own, Elway’s choice of replacement for Tebow is poised to be one of the most overpriced mistakes in league history. If Peyton Manning can return to form, few in Denver will ever remember the name Tim Tebow and that will be that. But if the 36 year old Manning who just signed a five-year contract worth $96 million contract with the Broncos and who is a year removed from playing a single down in the NFL due to persistent neck problems has any sort of set-back, you can believe that folks in Denver will be calling for Elway’s job. Its one hit even Elway won’t be able to avoid.


In his playing days Millen was pro-bowl linebacker known for his hard hitting and ability to instill fear on the gridiron. In his job as Detroit Lions CEO and GM however, he was known for his hard headed moves and his ability to instill fear and hatred amongst those in his own fanbase. Even though it might sound like I’m kidding, in truth there is nothing humorous about Millen’s tenure as head of the Lions. Not only was Detroit’s winning percentage the worst ever for a seven year period in the NFL under his leadership (.277), but the Lions inability to win on the road for three full seasons (2001-2003), their notoriously terrible draft selections (which included three bust WR selections taken with their first overall pick) and the infamous (and seemingly impossible) 0-16 season which came to fruition in Millen’s last year, are all reasons why many believe that Millen is possibly the worst front office executive of all time.

The title of worst executive overall however belongs to whomever decided that it was a good idea to give Millen a broadcasting job as a sports analyst after his terrible tenure with the Lions. The only comparison that even comes close to this terrible atrocity is someone actually hiring Bernie Madoff to teach a course on business ethics from his jail cell. That’s it nothing else is close.


In his playing days everyone wanted to be like Mike. He was able to sell out arenas (even baseball stadiums when he tried his hand at triple AAA ball), rake in millions in endorsements, was beloved the World over and was universally acclaimed as being the greatest basketball player of all time. In fact it has been 14 years since Michael Jordan played a meaningful basketball game (I only count his tenure with the Chicago Bulls as meaningful) and yet he is still brought up daily by the media and still sells millions of dollars each year in sports apparel with his longtime relationship with Nike.

Unfortunately, not all aspects of the basketball world have gone well for Jordan over the years, especially since his third retirement. And while his hall-of-fame induction speech might make the list, in the big picture sense what has perhaps hurt Jordan and his invincible image the most emanates from his front office position with the Washington Wizards and his subsequent move to buy the Charlotte Bobcats and his ineptitude as an owner/decision maker on that front which have completely run the team into the ground.   With respect to the former, two words sum up his job with the Wizards; Kwame Brown, a pick so terrible that the Wizard rewarded Jordan by severing all ties with him after he came out of retirement to play two seasons with them.  With regards to the latter, well what else is there left to say really? Not only did his team just post the worst winning percentage in league history (.106), but questionable picks which include (but are not limited to) Bismack Biyombo, Kemba Walker and Adam Morrison, the firing of Hall of Fame coach Larry Brown and the revolving door policy of acquiring and then releasing mid-level talent like Stephen Jackson, Raymond Felton, Gerald Wallace and Correy Maggette are all reasons why Jordan needs to seriously second guess his decision to be part of any front office ever again. He might have been known as Air-Jordan on the court, but off it, the only term that accurately sums him up his performance as an executive is Air-Head.

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09 Jul

Although teams are not allowed to formally sign their free-agent acquisitions until later this week, it has indeed been a wild offseason this year in the NBA. While some teams can look forward to improved rosters barring a potential signee pulling the ‘Carlos Boozer’, in the zero-sum game that is the NBA, obviously other teams will have a much grimmer outlook after July 11th.


New Jersey Brooklyn Nets

When the Nets executed the deal that dealt Derrick Favors, Devin Harris two first-round draft picks and cash to Utah in exchange for Deron Williams last year , a lot of people scratched their heads (especially considering the way Williams had essentially cost the long time and well respected coach Jerry Sloan his job). When it was announced that Williams was dealt without any assurances that he would remain with the Nets past July 2012, a lot of people (myself included) thought the Nets had executed one of the worst deals in recent NBA history.

Fortunately for the Nets, a lot of things played out well for them. First, they played their last game in New Jersey and had a lot of hype around them with the move to Brooklyn. After that, despite their suspect season they were able to sign Gerald Wallace to a long term deal (which undid the suspect move of dealing away the sixth pick in the 2012 loaded draft to get him from Portland) and decided to make the bold move of taking on Joe Johnson’s massive contract. While the latter move is somewhat suspect given Johnson’s playoff performance the last couple of years, if Deron Williams is to be believe it was a stroke of genius in that it enabled the Nets to coax their prize from Utah into signing a long-time extension to remain with the team.

In the end, although their pay-roll is relatively now relatively high, the Nets now have a starting 5 that includes 3 All-stars, a solid rebounder and double-double machine in Kris Humphries (who is probably staying put given his impending child support obligations) and a 7 foot up and coming centre in Brook Lopez who can be a real force if he ever learns to rebound.

Solid haul for New Jersey all around.

Los Angeles Lakers

When David Stern decided to arbitrarily void the now infamous 3 team Chris Paul trade last year, he not only redefined the word conflict-of-interest, but he destroyed any chance for the Lakers to fill a major void on their roster with one of the best PGs in the game. While the movehad reprocussions for the Lakers all season, most notably in the offseason when stop-gap solution Ramon Sessions imploded in the playoffs, things started to look up for the Lakers when word started to spread that Steve Nash would join their squad.

Although Nash nearing the end of his playing days, the Lakers are getting a perennial all-star, two-time MVP and one of the best PGs in the NBA who still has a lot of gas left in the tank despite his advanced age. Therefore, clearly while Nash is not the longterm solution to the Lakers point guard problem, for the next three years he will be a huge addition to the back court alongside Kobe Bryant, and if Bynum’s knee holds they could  be poised to make a deep playoff run.

Oklahoma City Thunder

While their most recent playoff run did not end the way they wanted it too, James Harden’s terrible play might have actually done them some favours in the long-run. Given Harden’s terrible play it is now far less likely that other teams around the league will be lining up to toss max money his way and as such, OKC can potentially sign him to a long term deal for a lot less money. This of course leaves more money to help sign other guys.

Other positives for the Thunder this offseason include the theft of Perry Jones with the 28th pick (who would have been a top-ten pick if not for some health issues) and the low risk high reward signing of Hasheem Thabeet, the former number two overall pick from 2009.

New Orleans Hornets

Whether or not you choose to believe the conspiracy theorists is a matter of choice, but the New Orleans Hornets have quickly put together an impressive young roster who can potentially rival the Thunder and Heat for titles in the not too distant future. In addition, to getting franchise changer and number one overall pick Anthony Davis, the Hornets snagged explosive shooting guard Austin Rivers at ten, still have the rights to Eric Gordon and are on the verge of acquiring 3 point specialist (and solid rebounder) Ryan Anderson from the Magic. Add to this the dumping of Rashard Lewis’ Albatross contract and the acquisition of Anthony Davis’ former Kentucky teammate Darius Miller at 46 and the future is bright indeed for the Hornets.


Dallas Mavericks

When it comes to the Dallas Mavericks I honestly do not know which is the bigger shock, winning the title in 2011 or their decision to not put any effort into defending their title in 2012. It was a bold move by the Mavericks to not reward their championship pieces by ensuring that they stayed in Dallas longterm and instead hoard thier money to make a run at some of the big names in 2012 free agency. And while they say that fortunes favor the bold, in this case things could not have gone worse for the Mavericks. Not only are Tyson Chandler, Jason Kidd and Jason Terry now long gone, but now that Deron Williams decided to re-sign with the Nets, their master plan of signing Deron Williams to be the future of the franchise seems to have gone up in smoke. Couple this with the fact that free agents seem to be avoiding Dallas like the plague since their decision to forgo any attempt to defend their title, and the future looks bleak for a team that won the title just a year ago.

Toronto Raptors

When you pursue a highly sought after free-agent and he ends up turning you down, that is life. But when that free-agent turns down the opportunity to play for his home country, be the star of your franchise and 11 million dollars, that is pretty telling. When Steve Nash turned down the opportunity to play for the Raptors he was making a statement which was that the Raptors are so poorly run right now that he would rather play somewhere else for a whole lot less than be associated professional basketball in Toronto. Ouch. Add to this that the Raptors seem to have overpaid yet again for a role player in Landry Fields and they drafted a guy who many experts thought was taken twenty spots too high in Terence Ross and Toronto fans are in for another long season. If Austin Rivers or Andre Drummond turn out to have successful NBA careers it is only right that Toronto’s front office brass be made accountable for this latest debacle.

Dwight Howard

If Dwight Howard really is Superman I am guessing his Krytonite is not only limited to success in the playoffs, but common sense as well. Unless Dwight Howard is on a mission to take the title of least liked NBA player away from LeBron James, people in Dwight’s camp need to hold an intervention on his behalf because he is on the fast track to killing his career on and off the court. With respect to the latter it is tough to see people lining up to hand a petulant Dwight Howard millions of dollars to be associated with their brands when the public’s disdain for him is reaching ever higher by the day. And as for on the court, well his actions speak for himself. Since becoming with the idea of leaving the Magic Howard has demanded a trade, undemanded a trade, demanded a trade, signed a one year extension, demanded a trade again and then demanded the trade be made to only the Brookyln Nets. Couple this with the fact that he has not only gotten the Coach and the team’s longtime GM fired, but accused his own team of blackmail, and you get the picture why mnay people have turned on Dwight Howard and actually want the Magic to dump him on some basement dweller like the Bobcats or the Kings.

Unfortunately, in the current state of “me-first” basketball, it looks like there is still a strong chance that Dwight Howard will get his wish and not only be traded from the Magic, but dealt to the Nets with a lucrative long-term deal to boot. I don’t know why NBA GMs are going out of their teams to let 8 franchises rule the league for years to come, but it makes you what happened to the new CBA’s promise of protecting small market franchises. I guess in the end the lesson is that its hard to protect the little guy when he is not willing to protect himself.

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