Tuesday, February 22, 2005

An All-Sick All-Star Weekend

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I had a nasty cold over the weekend (it's almost gone at the moment). In fact, I wasn't the only one. My sister got it first, the day after we went to the Bulls game. I think she got it because we walked around outside in the chilly air looking for our car after we left the game. We had to walk around for a couple of minutes because we didn't walk out the same door we went in.

Samone ended up staying home a couple of extra days because of her sickness. When she left to go back to school, I hadn't gotten sick yet. However, by the time she came back home to watch the NBA All-Star Weekend festivities, I was sick too. I normally don't get colds too often. I think it's because I take medicine for my allergies. However, when I do get a cold, I get it BAD. And unfortunately, I was running out of medicine right around the time of the Bulls game. I had gotten some more, only to find out that it was expired and it had to be returned. However, when my dad went to return the medicine, he couldn't get any more from the same store because they had sold out. This left me with about two days without any medicine in my system...and that's when the cold hit. The worse thing about my cold was the change in temperatures whenever I tried to sleep. For a couple of days, I slept only for three hours at a time because I'd wake up sweaty after going to bed chilly. I did make sure to drink a lot of fluids, though. When my dad picked up some cough/cold medicine for Samone and I, things got a little better.

Despite both me and my sister being sick, we did manage to catch the NBA All-Star festivities. Here are my comments about them:

-I hope Brian McKnight learned one thing from the Celebrity game...he should play more basketball and record less music.

-I liked the Rookie/Sophomore game. The Rookies couldn't hold keep their lead to win it, but they at least gave the Sophomores some trouble for the first half.

-The world got to see how good Luol Deng and Ben Gordon are in that R/S game. Luol in particular did pretty well, although Ben Gordon put a nice move on LeBron James. Hmmm....I wonder why didn't that one make the highlight reels?

-You gotta love NBA TV. Samone and I couldn't get over how, on the first day of All-Star fun, they decided to broadcast from the lobby of the hotel where the NBA people were staying. I think they did that solely to insure that they would get NBA players to talk to. Some players (most notably Ray Allen) looked like they didn't expect anyone to interview them at that moment.

-I don't know if things have gone downhill for the NBA among children or for children's TV in general, but what happened to those Stay in School jams the NBA did back in the day? I remember when I was like 12 or 13 and they had this big time show the Saturday morning of All-Star weekend. It was live, at about 11 or so in the morning, and was broadcast on NBC and several different cable networks (like Nickelodeon, TNT, and BET). It had NBA players, music performers, and it all encouraged kids to read and stay in school. It was a lot of fun to watch. Now, the NBA has the "Reading Rally" which was a serious, almost documentary-like program about the things the NBA does to help kids. It was really lame. I say for NBA All-Star 2006, bring back the NBA All-Star Stay In School Jam!

-Does anyone really like the NBA Shooting Stars competition?

-This may sound like a stupid question but...Do any big men, players taller than 6'9, have hops? I know that many shorter players have high vertical ability. This is the reason why shorter players tend to win the slam dunk contest. However, I really think a bigger player could win the slam dunk contest if they had a lot of vertical. Could you imagine how crazy it would be to see a 7 foot tall player jump above the rim and land a dunk? But it seems like if you're tall, you can only jump as high as the hoop. Does this mean that the taller you get, the less you can actually jump in the air?

-Speaking of the dunk contest, it was the most creative one I've seen in a while. Josh Smith (the winner) and Amare Stoudemire clearly had the best dunks. Josh's dunk over a seated Kenyon Martin (who threw the ball up to him) was amazing, especially since he pulled it off in one try (and without so much as hitting his foot on Kenyon). Amare's best dunk was the one that had the ball bounce off the backboard, then off Steve Nash's head to him to dunk. I wonder if Ben Gordon entered the slam dunk contest would he try that dunk with Luol Deng...

-Two things made the actual All-Star Game unique: Defense and Team Play. At times, it felt like a real NBA game. That is both a blessing and a curse. I, of course, like watching NBA games. However, one of the things I like about All-Star games is that they (normally) are filled with players showboating and having a good time. They really don't care about winning the game, but scoring a lot and putting on a show. This isn't to say that this year's game didn't have any spectacular moments (Tracy McGrady and Vince Carter's off the backboard plays were great), but showboating didn't really happen. The teams actually played a little defense and at times, the ball changed possession a few times before someone finally got a basket. What really sums up the style of this game is the fact that no player got 20 points or more, not even the MVP. It wasn't a bad game in the least, but part of me wants the showboating to return next year.

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