I was checking out Amazon.com yesterday when I noticed that The Hardball Times Baseball Annual 2006 was ranked #17 among best-selling baseball books, sandwiched in between Jim Bouton's Ball Four and Roger Kahn's The Boys of Summer. Pretty cool. Oh, and it begins shipping next week, so please order your copy today if you haven't already.
I think Jeff Shelman does a really nice job covering college basketball for the Minneapolis Star Tribune, but this comment on Gophers forward Dan Coleman in his "Meet the Gophers" piece Wednesday was one of the most ridiculous things I've read all week:
With his combination of length and ballhandling, Coleman might be the best long-term NBA prospect on this team. However, he tends to vanish at times on the floor. Needs to be more aggressive.
Perhaps that says more about the rest of the Gophers than it does about Coleman, but it's still like saying, "Someone who buys a lottery ticket might have a better chance at winning the lottery than the people who don't buy a ticket." Normally I'd add something pithy here, like "if Dan Coleman ever plays in the NBA I'll eat my Gophers hat." However, since Kevin Burleson is actually on an NBA roster right now, I think I'll just shut up.
Also, I don't think much of Vincent Grier's NBA potential (which my uncle and I discussed at some length while watching the Gophers narrowly beat UMD last week), but there's no way Coleman is more of a "long-term NBA prospect." He plays with zero intensity and has no discernible skills that are above-average. The NBA GM who drafts him should be fired on the spot.
There is some debate about which cast member of The Goonies is doing the best 20 years after the movie was released. I say it's no contest, because Josh Brolin gets to wake up next to Diane Lane every morning. Seriously, does anyone actually think being in The Lord of the Rings is better than that?
Is there anything funnier than people being upset about how they were portrayed in an interview with a fake news show? If The Daily Show asks to interview you about something you consider to be a serious, important subject, don't you think actually watching the show once or twice before agreeing is a good idea?
The Week in Waffle Crappers:
* Does anyone else find it amusing that GQ's "Woman of the Year" is semi-topless on the magazine's cover? When's the last time a "Man of the Year" posed for a cover with like one testicle showing?
* The former Official Fantasy Girl of AG.com, Jessica Alba, had a busy week. First she said she is tired of being typecast as "a sexy girl" and wants more serious roles like the ones Natalie Portman gets. Then she played the part of "a sexy girl" to perfection while posing for pictures with Rosario Dawson. And then she smuggled some raisins.
* Here's a fun game: Who is fatter at this point, Janet Jackson or Jennifer Garner?
* Speaking of previously elite Waffle Crappers, Cindy Crawford isn't looking her best these days either.
Remind me never to move to Kansas.
The Baltimore Sun has a lengthy, interesting profile of my favorite writer, Bill Simmons.
My FoxSports.com colleague, Charley Rosen, has an interesting write-up of last night's Timberwolves-Wizards game, with a whole lot of praise for Kevin Garnett.
I've really been enjoying Paul Shirley's ESPN.com columns, and I thought he made a very interesting point earlier this week about the careers of his fellow NBA journeymen like Mark Pope:
But, let us not forget that, regardless of his exact standing within his peer group, it could easily be said that Pope is among the best 1,000 basketball players in the world.
All of which makes the whole Kevin Burleson thing even more confusing.
I often find myself jealous of other bloggers because I wish I could write like them, have their audience, or just share their outlook on life. Sometimes it's Tony Pierce or Jeff Jarvis, other times it's Jon Weisman or Ryan Perry. This week I found myself jealous of Pauly McGuire over at the Tao of Poker, because covering poker tournaments (and everything that goes on surrounding them) sounds like a hell of a time.
ESPN.com's Page 2 is running an all-time tournament for college basketball, matching up the best players from each school's history. The Gophers are ranked 26th and play seventh-ranked Maryland in the first round. The whole tournament is fun to look at and includes a bunch of comments from friend of AG.com Eric Neel. However, I have to wonder about an all-time Gophers team that includes Dave Winfield, but not Bobby Jackson, Voshon Lenard or Hosea Crittenden.
In addition to being one of this blog's best and most prolific commenters, Paul Koopman also makes really good music. Seriously, go listen to some of his stuff, it's solid.
The math is not difficult. There are approximately 450 players in the NBA per year. Pope has proven that he is certainly a qualified NBA player. Even if we allow that there are somehow another 500 players in the world as good, scattered as they might be in remote outposts of European basketball or Tibetan mountainsides, we would still be safe in our conclusion.
Think about that for a second. There are, give or take, six billion humans on the Earth. How many people will ever exist among the top .0000167 percent of the world's population ... at anything? In fact, it is a sobering thought.
Today at The Hardball Times:
- Breaking Down the New Joint Drug Agreement (by Maury Brown)
- Like Son Like Father? (by John Brattain)
Pick of the Day (138-119, +$1,895):
Seattle -2 (-110) over Chicago
Oklahoma +8 (-110) over Texas Tech
Buffalo +11 (-110) over San Diego