Anthony Davis Is A LA Laker

Anthony Davis-LeBron James

Well! That was fast. The ink is barely dry on the NBA championship certificates and teams – er, make that the Lakers team – is rushing in to pan for 2020 gold. In other words, the Toronto Raptors barely finished prying the Warriors’ fingers from the Larry O’Brien Trophy when the Lakers Organization proceeded to claim dibs on winning the 2020 NBA Title.

And here’s the news on the NBA’s latest blockbuster trade: This just in — The Los Angeles Lakers have agreed to trade the farm, er, make that the farm animals, for Anthony Davis. No offense to Brandon Ingram who is a legitimate, up and coming star, but Lonzo Ball is a bust, and Josh Hart is, well . . . just who is Josh Hart again? Anyway, the Lakers have come into this offseason looking and smelling like the city dump but will come out of this trade looking and smelling like a rose. For their part, the New Orleans Pelicans (I almost said the New Orleans Jazz – it just sounds better) – anyway, the Pelicans have the No. 1 overall pick in this year’s draft, and so getting Zion Williamson, for now — aka, on paper — is fair compensation for losing Anthony Davis.

We’ll see how this one works out. The Lakers haven’t made the playoffs in six years. Six years. And this past year was LeBron’s first with the proud but now pitiful franchise which has had the offseason from hell. For the Lakers it’s been rough sledding. This past season, the saga has been sordid: Magic comes and then goes; Walton goes; potential coaches come and then go. The toasts of Tinsel Town couldn’t write a more soapy script.

But if — that’s IF —  the Lakers can pull off a turnaround next season, it will be one for the record books. And that’s the lesson. From the world’s perspective, if you just turn things around, you will be forgiven and all will be forgotten. It does not matter how bad it looks or how bad it gets, just turn it around. And all will be forgiven.

Spiritually, it works for us the other way. Just accept God’s amazing grace, and then He will turn you around and He will turn things around for you. All is forgiven when you accept his grace. Don’t try to do this at home; that is to say, don’t try to do this on your own. It takes the toast of Heaven, our Lord and Savior, to turn things around. It does not matter how bad it looks or how bad it gets, He can turn it around for you. He can and He will, if we trust Him and believe.

Can LeBron and the Lakers Make Magic? (look like a genius?)

lebron-james-signs-4-year-154-million-deal-with-los-angeles-lakers

LeBron James just signed with the Los Angeles Lakers, and now Magic Johnson and the team from Tinsel town seems to be one free agent away from building the talent that can contest and wage war with Warriors for supremacy in the NBA’s Western Conference. Wow.

LeBron James chose LA for obvious reasons. One, he lives there. Two, he wants to stay there. Three, and this is the one most of us question, he thinks he can win another championship there.  We’ll see.  The Lakers were not good last season, but now the fans are dancing in the streets. And now they must go from not so good to great overnight if the Lakers are to return to their former glory.

And that’s where we all want to be; back to the glory days of our youth and our better days when we were at our peak and played at our finest. LeBron’s no spring chicken, but he’s also proven that he, like fine wine, is just getting better with age. And that’s the other lesson. Can we all get better instead of getting worse? Can we improve our game and not stay the same but instead progress and proceed in spite of the wear and tear of everyday life? 

LeBron showed us that it can be done, because he did it in Cleveland. Now, we’ll see if he can stage a comeback and turn the Lakers franchise around. Now, we’ll see if he can play with Lonzo Ball and Brandam Ingram and Kyle Kuzma and make them better players.

Now, we’ll see if LeBron can pull a rabbit out of Magic’s hat in LA.

Who Won the 2017 NBA Draft?

Markelle Fultz NBA Draft

Who Won the 2017 NBA Draft?

Philly, of course! I mean, of course we won, right? What did you think I was going to say? Da Sixas (The Philadelphia Seventy Sixers) selected Markelle Fultz No. 1 with their acquired top pick. And what’s not to like? Fultz can shoot, he can score, he can pass, and he can flat out play ball. 

So, the question is, who is better after the 2017 NBA Draft? Philly? LA? Boston?  We’ll see.  But all three of these historically elite NBA franchises have gotten better with the selection of their draft picks. But the question remains, who will go from good to great? Which team gets not just better, but markedly improved with their pick? And isn’t that what we all want to do?

We all want to be wanted. We all want to be wished for and hoped for and craved and coveted.  The need to be needed lies at the very core of sports, and life. Philly needs a point guard like nobody’s business. And we got the best one in the draft. Thank God.

We all need love and support and attention and affirmation. Too much will spoil us. But too little could hamper us and hobble us for life. The good news is that God wants us. He has chosen us to be His special people and His peculiar possession. To win, all we need to do is signup and play for Him.

It’s Not Who You Come To See, Its Who You Leave Talkin’ About

De'Aaron Fox

 Kenny Smith said “It’s Not Who You Come To See, Its Who You Leave Talkin’ About.”  Truth.

Going into last night’s marquee matchup between UCLA and Kentucky,  all the attention and media concentration was on  the consensus No. 1 pick in this year’s NBA Draft,  UCLA’s Lonzo Ball. But another lesser known freshman sensation changed all of that by playing the game of his life.

 Lonzo Ball and the UCLA Bruins may be a great team, but last night they played a better team.  I turned on the TV expecting a basketball game and a track meet broke out. It was a fast paced, up and down, back and forth affair, and that’s how life is sometimes. And last night, a better player, in De’Aaron Fox, at least last night, broke out too.

Fox, a lesser known Kentucky freshman guard outplayed fellow freshman phenom Lonzo Ball with one of the best scoring nights in Kentucky’s vaunted NCAA Tournament history.

Fox scored a career-high 39 points as Kentucky beat UCLA 86-75 Friday night in a Sweet Sixteen showdown between two of college basketball’s goliaths for a spot in the South Regional final. Fox not only turned in the best NCAA scoring performance since Tayshaun Prince had 41 against Tulsa in 2002, it was the best by a freshman in tournament history.

Fox fought and scratched and clawed his way to a 39 point night because the matchup was personal. Fox took the game right to Ball, and last night, Lonzo wasn’t the baller that he’s been billed to be. And the Kentucky Wildcat played like a fox and took full advantage of the fact that he wasn’t expected to have a great, spectacular, sensational game while on the court with the fan favorite from UCLA.

It just goes to show ya, it’s not how you start, its how you finish. And now De’Aaron and his Wildcat wonder boy buddies will play North Carolina for the right to go to the 2017 Final Four in Phoenix. So don’t put all your money on the favorite or the front runner. Because they may not be as good as you when no one gives you a chance to be the best you can be.

 

LaVar Ball: Father Knows Best? 

LaVar-Ball_HS-Sons-

Fathers are our bedrock and our backbone. They are our rudder and our tether; our guide and our guard. Fathers give direction and prod us to perfection; fathers give support and supervision and provide protection and loving affection. Just like our Heavenly Father, our earthly fathers are supposed to be there for us; they’re supposed to love us and school us in the ways of this life, and the life to come hereafter.

Sports fathers are a special breed. A father with a child athlete that is not over the top and operates under the radar is unique and exclusive. And LaVar ball, in his own inimitable, incomparable and incorrigible way, has demonstrated to all other sports dads in the sports world how NOT to be a sports dad.

LaVar Ball, father of Lonzo Ball of UCLA fame, has two other sons coming up behind Lonzo. Dads’claim to fame is that all three of his “Baller” Boys will be multi-million dollar dandies in the NBA. At least that’s the plan. But sometimes the best laid plans of mice and men oft go astray (from Robert Burns’ poem, “To a Mouse”).

LaVar Ball has been criticized and analyzed and pulverized in the popular press for his outlandish and outrageous comments; and rightfully so. His dramatic and bombastic and fantastic and sarcastic sayings have surely affected his sons, and especially his eldest son, and may affect his status and standing in the upcoming NBA Draft. An NBA team may want to jump on and snatch up the son, but do they want to fool with the father? Because the one certainly and assuredly comes with the other; i.e., the son absolutely does not come without the dad.

Just think about it: is LaVar Ball bettering his sons, or is he badgering their chances? A father is supposed to better, not badger. And so the jury is still out on this one.

Here’s just a sampling of some of the things LaVar Ball has said:

1. “Back in my heyday, I would kill Michael Jordan one-on-one.” — March 2017

Have you stopped laughing yet? OK, good.

LaVar Ball averaged 2 points per game with Washington State before transferring to Division II Cal State Los Angeles. At that same time, Michael Jordan was averaging 35 points per game with the Bulls. He’s a six-time NBA champion and the greatest to ever play.

Plus, LaVar already admitted that he “wasn’t all that.” LaVar says a lot of crazy things, but this tops them all. Michael Jordan was beating NBA players at age 49. He’d destroy LaVar Ball.

2. “A billion dollars, it has to be there. That’s our number, a billion, straight out of the gate. And you don’t even have to give it to me all up front. Give us $100 mil over 10 years.” — March 2017

This statement could make its case for the top spot because there is absolutely no way he should expect a billion-dollar endorsement contract for his sons. LeBron James’ lifetime deal with Nike is rumored to be worth in the billions, but he’s LeBron James — a future Hall of Famer and basketball icon.

This will never happen. How does he even expect that to happen?

3. “I’ll tell you right now, he’s better than Steph Curry to me.” — February 2017

“To me ‘Zo is the best player in the world. … I don’t know if he can beat (LeBron James and Russell Westbrook) one on one, but I know he can beat them 5 on 5.” — March 2017 By: Andrew Joseph , For The Win, March 17, 2017

God help the sons of LaVar Ball.