Sports


Lebron dropped a 43-13-15 on the Nuggets last night. His shooting percentage was just 45%- not spectacular- but when you include free throws, he scored 43 point on 33 shots. His Player Efficiency Rating for the season now stands at 31.85, on track to be the highest ever, barely beating Wilt’s estimated 31.84 in 1962. There is no doubt no that he will be better than Jordan when he reaches his prime (in most respects, he already is), and the only thing stopping him from overtaking Bill Russell as the greatest ever is the championships. He already took a bad team to the finals and deep into the playoffs several other times (something Jordan never did; every season without Pippen was under .500), and if he gets 6 championships like Mike it will be all over. The problem is that he will have to play against Durant and Carmelo every year, whose teams keep getting better and will be stiffer competition than Jordan ever had. I can’t wait to see it.

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Bill Simmons, one of my favorite writers on the web, hits the nail on the head. Tiger is trying to go back to his old style of pre-planning everything, not letting any of his real emotions come through. Why couldn’t his apology go like this:

You should have gone with, “I got married too soon, I should have sowed my oats first, I didn’t, I’m an ass.” Much better. We could relate to that. Instead, you came off like a horny robot.

Who couldn’t appreciate that? That’s the kind of selfish inconsideration that people do all the time. It doesn’t make what he did any better, but isn’t going with “I didn’t consider the pain I could inflict on others because I just wanted the most of what I enjoyed” instead of “I felt like I deserved to have the temptations?” Saying that he considered it and decided that since he was Tiger Woods it was ok instead of just doing what felt good without thinking seems to make things worse.

I think he has a chance to really take advantage of this episode, although it looks like he will not be doing so. What if Tiger let his insecurities about winning and being appreciated be known and go back to the tour ultra-competitive? I would have loved to see him say “I made a big mistake, but golf is what I do and I am not going to let my mistakes stop me from doing what I want.”

ESPN.com ran a story today about Gilbert Arenas and teammate Javaris Crittenton drew guns on each other in the locker room over a gambling dispute. I don’t understand the connection between athletes and guns. I would think that because they make so much money and have such time sensitive careers, they have more to lose than most people by risking arrest involving a firearm. But this is another piece of evidence to the contrary- perhaps because that extra money buys them excellent lawyers.

Paul Pierce, fantasizing about being David Stern, says he would take away the age limit for the NBA and raise the rim 3 inches to encourage better fundamentals.

I have always been against the age limit. Normally, under perfect competition, another league could be formed that hires the younger players if the fans will pay to see them, which they clearly will, considering the popularity of college basketball. Unfortunately, the NBA has a huge first mover advantage, and the age limit is not nearly enough for another league to overcome it. So we have to hope the NBA will not let its power go to its head and turn into a bureaucracy.

As for raising the rim, I don’t know about that. The athleticism and jumping are one of the things that make the NBA entertaining. I think raising the rim would move toward alienating fans instead of attracting them with better play.

Ed Carson at Investors.com talks about the Laker’s winning the championship in years when the market ends up falling. Since the market is coming up and should keep doing so after this season, let’s hope that means good news for the Celtics.