Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Where it's at

If you're reading this, you're at the wrong place... GiveMeTheRock.com is where it's at. There's all kinds of mad crazy new things going on over there. I mean, weren't you tired of seeing the same old theme all the time? You can check out the new design over at GiveMeTheRock.com. No joke. It's the place to be up in this Internet joint. I ain't playing. It be like flying.

Are you still here? Come on yo.

Trust me - the search is a lot better, there's categories so you can find what you need faster, and I deprecated some of the links to ensure that you're only clicking on the freshest and cleanest. Like diamonds.

Still reading? Well...

All the arkizives are there. Yup, imported them all... and Yahoo has already indexed like 80% of em. What up, tho, Yahoo!

Also, if you're reading this in your feed reader, it's time to switch your style. Try this: http://feeds.feedburner.com/GiveMeTheRock - that way even if the site gets moved again, you'll stay on point. I ain't fronting, neither. Nu uh. No way.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Sunday's Playoff Games

First off, I have to comment on the Heat-Nets game, since it was the only one on "broadcast" TV... that's right - no cable for me. I might have been tempted to go to a sports/alcohol venue to view the remaining games of the evening, but it's Sunday, and Sunday is a lazy day... if I hadn't been going to see Moby last night, I might have gone out to watch the games... since Saturday is party night.

Anyway, the Heat, the Nets. Here's how it is: I used to like Vince Carter. In his interview with Amhad that they aired at half time he was trying to take back what he said about playing half-assed in Toronto. Now, I'm willing to buy that the media is extremely adept as misconfiguring, reconstruing and otherwise pillaging and razing any comments made by anyone... there is a point at which they must bear some truth. Everyone knows Vince played like Shit (with a capital S) in Toronto. Whether this was truly only because he didn't have Jason Kidd on his team there can be argued. Whether he was really dogging it, or just having trouble finding assitance on the team can also be argued. But he played like crap, complained until he was traded, and when he left the didn't seem to struggle any more without him than they did with him. Now all of a sudden he's playing like the Vince of Olde? I have no sympathy. In fact, watching the game, I was turned so far as to hope that they lose in as few games as possible.

Meanwhile, my former arch nemesis as a Laker, has grown a goatee which I'm sure he hopes is reminiscent of ancient Chinese warriors (who fought with honor and were endowed with great wisdom), and also grown into a spot in my heart where only a lovable giant could fit. It was hard to fit him in there, especially since I also have to squeeze Dwanye Wade and his unflinching work ethic in there too. And, Alonzo Mourning has been my favorite of the first three picks of the draft that yielded three current Heat players. He's been through a lot, and despite that he pulled a Jim Jackson by not reporting to Toronto, I think he deserves a title. In Mourning, the Heat have pretty much the best backup center you can get. He could probably spell Shaq for an entire game and you'd hardly notice. Not that it's going to happen, but just so you know that it could.

Next up... Da Bulls! Some crackpot over at nba.com thinks the Wizards are still going to win, despite being down 1-0 in the series. Okay, maybe I'm going a little overboard... I didn't even see the game, so I don't know how well they played, but they won. Of coures, if they do manage to win the series (which I picked them to do in my NBA.com playoff game), they'll play the Heat... and get obliterated. Even if Curry and Deng returned at full strength, I don't think they could handle the Heat. But I'd be happy to let the Heat with this year if it means Shaq will retire sooner. The Bulls are young and if Skiles can keep the small but growing egos in check, they're going to a dominant team in short order.

As I'm writing this, the Spurs are leading Denver... only by 5, with 10 minutes left... but it leads me to my last point which is: The Spurs are too much for the Nuggets. I mean, when someone's reasone for saying that you might beat the Spurs is because you're "hot" ... that just isn't going to cut it.

And I'm spent.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

World Community Grid

Every bit as important as joining my playoff prediction league, is joining the World Community Grid. I work on the project in my spare time (you know, when I'm not checking fantasy basketball statistics). I can tell you that it is a worthwhile project, and will help to advance medical research in meaningful ways.

And now that you've got a lot of extra time with no more box scores to check until Saturday... you can head on over to http://www.worldcommunitygrid.org and start helping humanity. It's a good thing.

NBA.com's Pick 'N Roll Playoff Game

NBA.com: Pick 'N Roll:
"Think you've got the prognostication skills to challenge any expert pundit? Predict your way through the postseason with Pick 'n Roll, NBA.com's official bracket game. Play is simple:
- Pick the winning team and total number of games for each playoff series.
- Accumulate points for each series winner you pick -- and get a bonus for picking the correct number of games on top of the series winner.
- Point totals for series winners escalate with each round -- the further your teams advance, the more points you win.
- The participant who garners the most points over the course of the Playoffs and Finals could win a trip to see their favorite team in action."


The interface is really nice for this one... and I might even have a chance this year since it's so wide open! I'm ready for the playoffs!! (I believe it requires you to register at NBA.com, but really, you haven't already?)

I created a league called "Give Me The Rock" if anyone wants to join it... I'm not expecting anything, but I would be interested to see what other people's picks for the playoffs are.

Count it.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Give Me The Rock Highlight Reel

As the fantasy basketball season (and NBA regular season, for that matter) draw to a close, I can't help but anticipate all the great highlight reels that will be shown during the playoff hype. Actually, if you hadn't noticed, the NBA is pretty heavy on the hype already with ad reels of Miami, Detroit, San Antone, Cleveland, and Phoenix (that I've seen). I love those pregame showdown drama builders almost more than the games themsevles... so, as a loving tribute to the Human Highlight Reel (and also as a tribute to those behind-the-scenes presentations that agents make to coaches, GMs, etc. to hype their players)...

Give Me The Rock Highlight Reel, featuring Shep "Rookie of the Year" OC aka "Break of Dawn"*

(I've included here the most popular posts according to StatTracker and Feedburner, as well as my personal favorites)

Update: What is 6 TO's worth?
Man-child's back-up
Shep Interview: CEO Style
Nash is (in) a freak (accident)
Godzylla
Sprained Ankle Virus going around the NBA
The 90-footer
Ima...
If video games were true to life...
Sonics: Real Basketball is more important than Fantasy Basketball

and the crowning moment of Give Me The Rock, the most popular post to date:
T-Mac Video

If my calculations are correct, there's about 6 months until your next fantasy basketball draft... (unless you're in a keeper league or doing one of the playoff leagues) It was my intention when I started this blog to fill the off-season with articles that I wanted to read during the off-season. I was so addicted to fantasy basketball that I had to write my own articles so I had something to read. And now, as opposed to last summer, you'll have this blog, and the Fantasy Basketblog as well, to feed your addiction. While everyone else is worrying about ERA, WHIP, OBP, SOAP, AJAX, CRM, and making up other acronyms, I'll bring you an extensive selection of Draft Guides for 2005-06 as well as coverage of the "actual" draft, and of course, any free agent signings and trades that occur. I'm guessing there might be one or two...

* (Break of Dawn is my NBA Street nickname ... which looked a lot like "Break'd Down" the first time I saw it on the gamebreaker screen... I almost like that better)



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Monday, April 18, 2005

Playoff Predictions ... more

Since I live in Chicago and go to Bulls games, let me tell you something that will happen in the playoffs: Jannero Pargo will hit some shots.

This becomes increasingly true the more games the Bulls play, and the more fouls that Kirk Hinrich and Ben Gordon pick up. I would say that it will also be true when the Bulls are up by a good deal of points, but that is as unlikely to happen in the playoffs as it is likely that Pargo will surprise you.

I make no such claims for anyone else further down the bench (Ben Gordon and Tyson Chandler count as "up" the bench).

Saturday, April 16, 2005

Bucks' Ford finally gets OK to shoot hoops

Bucks’ Ford finally gets OK to shoot hoops - NBA - MSNBC.com:
"Milwaukee Bucks point guard T.J. Ford shot baskets with his doctor's permission Saturday for the first time since bruising his spinal cord almost 14 months ago.

"I was excited to finally be able to touch a basketball — with permission," Ford said.

Ford was cleared to resume basketball activities last week, almost a year after cervical spinal surgery... On Saturday, Ford shot baskets at the team's training facility in the morning then again at the Bradley Center several hours before the game between the Bucks and the Orlando Magic."


Fantasy Impact

It's hard to say at this point. Ford still has more tests to undergo in another six weeks. It's safe to say that if he's healthy, he'll be a good pick (he had 7 points, 3 rebounds, and 6 assists as a rookie). It's not safe to say that he'll be healthy...

Also of note is the fact that quality point guards seem to come and go more than other types of players in fantasy basketball. This season saw the emergence of Rick Brunson and Dan Dickau as viable fantasy options for significant periods.

Friday, April 15, 2005

Iverson, Wade Ballin Outta Control

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- Allen Iverson again is leading Philadelphia upward in the Eastern Conference standings.

Iverson scored 38 points and had 16 assists, helping the Sixers spoil the return of Shaquille O'Neal and overcome a career-high 48 points from Dwyane Wade with a 126-119 overtime win over the Miami Heat on Thursday night.

``It's like a do or die situation,'' Iverson said. ``A loss here or there and we could be out of the playoffs. We understand that. It just says a lot about us.''

Marc Jackson scored 26 and Kyle Korver 20 for the Sixers.



Holy crap! Not that anyone but Iverson and Wade owners care, but 38 and 16 from Iverson and 48, 10, and 6 from Wade! Not to mention 26 from Marc Freakin Jackson and 20 from Kyle Korver (5 three-pointers). Nice game! Not sure about Jackson, but you definitely want to keep those other guys HIGH on your draft list for next year.

Count it.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Playoff Predictions

I've been seeing what all the "professional writers" are saying... and since fantasy basketball is pretty much over, I thought I'd continue my coverage of basketball in a more general sense...

Here's my thoughts on the playoffs:

First of all, I'm very excited. This playoffs looks to be one of the more fun playoffs we've seen in a long time (although what could be more fun than watching the Lakers fall apart last year?)

While I think that Shaq (with Mourning backing him up) and Wade are pretty much unstoppable, nothing says that Shaq isn't going to get injured... if he plays the whole way, though, the Heat are the team to beat.

The West is the widest open I think it's been in a long time. If Duncan is over his ankle injury, then obviously the Spurs are the team to beat. But the Suns, Sonics, Mavericks, Kings, Nuggets, and Rockets all seem like they've got a pretty good chance. It's going to be awesome to see them duke it out.

Also, I'm excited to be in Chicago for the Bulls first playoff appearance since the Glory Days. If I hadn't mentioned it before, I was there when the Bulls clinched their first spot in 7 years. With that and the Illini this year, Chicago is doing pretty well in the basketball world. But, will they be able to win a series without Eddy Curry? We already know they can beat lesser teams without Luol Deng... but they lost to their likely opponents, the Wizards, last night...

I'd like to leave this as an open thread to any passersby... Feel free to leave your comments, predictions, hopes, and wildest fantasies here... just click where it says comments and let your conscience be your guide.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Maggette out rest of season

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Maggette out rest of season:
"Guard Corey Maggette will miss the season's final five games because of a torn ligament in his left wrist, leaving the Clippers without their leading scorer.

Maggette's wrist was put in a cast Monday for two weeks. He averaged a career-high 22.2 points in 66 games this season. He had planned to sit out last Saturday's game against San Antonio, but decided to play and scored 24 points in a 125-124 double-overtime loss."


Fantasy Impact

Well, that pretty much speaks for itself. It does hurt those people who are trying to hold on to a spot though... that's 100 points that you're going to have to make up if you've got Maggette. Tough situation to be at such a crucial (for some) point in the season.

Count it.

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Monday, April 11, 2005

Share the Knowledge

On a side note, I'm now 3-0 this season at Bulls games. I thought of this post at the game Saturday, even though I'd read about it somewhere before... I want to say on the Celtic Blog, but I'm not entirely sure about that. Speaking of the game Saturday, the Bulls clinched a playoff spot by winning that game. And I was there. Between that and the opening of Millennium Park, I feel I am truly becoming integrated with Chicago.

Anyway, the real reason I'm writing this is to share the knowledge I gained a while ago (once again, I can't remember where)... which is this: Shaking those signs behind the backboard while players are shooting free throws doesn't really do anything. First of all, the guys are trained by muscle memory and are pretty good at tuning that stuff out. Second, and more importantly, many signs moving in many, random directions actually tend to cancel each other out in the mind of the player. They essentially turn into white noise or static that can be filtered out.

Why am I mentioning this (besides just being a curmudgeon who sits up in the upper deck instead of behind the backboard?) ... because of this: If all of the people were to move back and forth in unison, "sway" if you will, (like if they were holding up lighters - but don't do that unless you want to get kicked out - and rocking back and forth to a power ballad at a rock concert)... if those fans were to coordinate their activities thus, it would give the player shooting the free throw the perception that it was actually the basket that was moving back and forth and not the background (I think it's our minds that are trained to think that way). Doesn't that sound much more effective in making players miss? I'm sure everyone would agree that it'd be harder to make baskets if the hoop was moving...

So, to summarize: If you're at a crucial point in a playoff game and the opposing team is shooting free throws, try to get the people behind the back board to Sway.



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Sunday, April 10, 2005

Pacific Division Report for the Stretch Run

My Pacific Division Report for the last "week" of the season is up at FantasyBasketball.com

Basically, out of the Pac-5 this week, only the Suns are guaranteed to bring you fantasy wins. Baron Davis is probably a could start as well. If you hadn't already figured that one out.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Hill's comeback season is likely over

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Grant Hill:
"The Magic placed Hill on the injured list on Friday, and it looks increasingly likely that the team will shut him down for the remainder of the season. Hill has missed Orlando's last three games as he continues to recover from a deep shin bruise that the team is concerned could lead to a stress fracture if not given the proper rest and rehab. Since the Magic already had the maximum of three players on the IL, the league granted a special exemption for Hill."


If you've been holding out hope, you can probably drop it. That said, Hill is on the IL, so if you have an open spot on the IL, especially if you're in a keeper league, that'd be a good place to put him.

Count it.

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Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Nowitzki's MRI reveals no damage to injured knee

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Nowitzki's MRI reveals no damage to injured knee:
"An MRI on Dirk Nowitzki's injured right knee revealed no damage Wednesday, and the Dallas Mavericks forward was listed as day to day.

Nowitzki, the only player in the league ranked in the top 10 in both scoring and rebounding, was hurt in the closing minutes of Dallas' 114-105 victory Tuesday night when he was undercut by Orlando's Andre Barrett. He later said his knee ``felt weird.''"


It seems pretty likely that teams in the playoffs, or fighting for a top roto spot, would have Dirk on their team... so this is probably important to them. And also to people who have moved on from fantasy basketball and are eagerly awaiting the excitment of the playoffs. I don't think I've seen a playoff look this wide open since... well, since before Kobe and Shaq were together... and even then, you had the Spurs and the Bulls. This is really the time for teams to step up. I mean, you've got the Heat coming out of the East, but they'll probably have to beat the Pistons and/or Pacers to get there.

The West is really anybody's call... I was all for the Spurs until Duncan got injured, but now, it would seem that the Suns have moved into contention. And you've got the Cinderella Sonics... And with Dirk, Stackhouse, Finley, Dampier, and Jason Terry, the Mavericks are looking pretty good right now.

That's my quick and dirty playoff preview. I could expound upon it later, but I've got a lot of stuff to do right now...

Count it.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Sonics: Real Basketball is more important than Fantasy Basketball

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - All-Star forward will rest, then be re-evaluated
: "Tests on All-Star forward Rashard Lewis' right foot showed no serious structural or ligament damage, and confirmed a deep bone bruise diagnosed last week.

Seattle SuperSonics general manager Rick Sund said Tuesday it's still not certain when Lewis can rejoin the team, but the 6-foot-10 swingman is expected to be available for the NBA playoffs.

``Everything's cool,'' Sund said. ``Rashard will sit out a few more days to heal, then we'll re-evaluate it this weekend. We'll know more after that.''"


So, basically, Sund is saying that having Lewis ready for the "real" playoffs is more important than playing him for fantasy basketball owners... clearly someone needs to Reprioritize.

Count it.

Deng to miss rest of year with wrist injury

Yahoo! Sports - NBA - Deng to miss rest of year with wrist injury:
"Chicago Bulls forward Luol Deng is expected to miss the rest of the season with a torn ligament in his right wrist, ending his solid rookie campaign.

The Bulls' regular season ends April 20, but they have won nine straight games and are on their way to making the playoffs for the first time since Michael Jordan's last season with Chicago in 1998. General manager John Paxson didn't address Monday whether Deng could be back for the postseason.

Deng, a starter who averages 11.7 points and 5.3 rebounds a game, likely will undergo surgery after an MRI Sunday night revealed a torn ligament in his wrist, which he hurt in the Bulls' 94-86 win over Memphis March 28. He played in subsequent wins at Charlotte and at home against Cleveland, but sat out Saturday's game against the Bobcats because of the injury.

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``That's a huge blow to us,'' Paxson said. ``We were so lucky early on with no injuries and now we have a bunch.''

Meanwhile, center Eddy Curry could be back playing ``by the end of the week,'' after being released from the hospital Monday, Paxson said. Curry has missed the last two games after being hospitalized Wednesday for an irregular heartbeat, but his heart problems have dissipated, Bulls team physician Dr. Kathy Weber said.

Curry, the Bulls' leading scorer with 16.1 points per game, underwent tests at Rush University Medical Center to better determine his cardiac function. Bulls officials said he will be allowed to resume play if several outpatient tests over the next two days turn out normal.

Bulls coach Scott Skiles has said the 22-year-old Curry will be brought back into action slowly because of the expected loss of conditioning.

Guard Kirk Hinrich, who missed several games recently because of a sore left hamstring and played limited minutes Saturday, will make the Bulls' upcoming road trip, Paxson said.

Despite the injuries, the Bull"


I'm going to just hurry up and post this before Blogger shuts me out again... I wasn't able to log on at all yesterday, and have been trying all morning.

I've been tempted never to show my face again after finishing 7th in my Yahoo league and 6th in my AOL league this year... shows what I know about fantasy basketball right? But... I was only 3-4 games out of the playoffs in both leagues, so I guess it's not that bad, right?

If you haven't already, check out FantasyBasketball.com.

And I guess that's all I have to say really... If you've made the playoffs in your league, then you probably don't need my help. If you didn't make it, then the DraftGuide 2005 that I'm preparing will hopefully help you get there next year. If you're looking for help still, check out the FantasyBasketblog or Fantasy NBA Blog... They're either doing better in their leagues or just have more time to report since they're still in college and can skip classes whenever they feel like it.

Count it.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Amaztype: Basketball

If you haven't already seen it, here's Amaztype for Basketball. And also for Give Me The Rock. I find it only slightly amusing. ;(

Friday, April 01, 2005

FantasyBasketball.com

I've been a lead contributor for FantasyBasketball.com for a couple weeks now. I do the Pacific Division review, and it usually appears each week on Friday or Saturday.

FantasyBasketball.com replaced FantasyRef.com ... so if you were a fan of that site - or even if you weren't - check it out. The message boards are starting to get some traffic, and a lot of the people are those knowledgeable folks from which I gleaned a lot of information at FantasyRef.com. Should give you something to read once the seeason is over... But don't worry, I'll have something for you to read during the off-season as well... I've been taking notes this season and will be preparing a draft guide for the 05-06 season, as well as a general fantasy basketball strategy guide.

Stay tuned for your local news.