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Written by Paul Shirley, a guy that sits the bench for the Suns.

Written on a recent 4 game road trip.




There are some gems in this:


As I spend more and more time around basketball players, my brain power continues to diminish, which is not helping. I have been on a slow burn since college, where I was at least encouraged to spend half the day around semi-studious (okay, in my case, uber-studious, with the whole engineering thing) types, and my brainpower probably benefited. After four years of professional basketball, with the expected level of intelligence seeming to drain from the ranks as the don?t-go-to-college-since-you-can-get-the-guaranteed-money-now trend has taken hold, my brain is a veritable mush. The only thing left up there are a few quotes from Tommy Boy and a dozen ways to cover a pick-and-roll.


Contrast that with my current situation. I play for (I use the term loosely; play for/cheer for?same thing) arguably the best basketball team in the world. My responsibilities include: 1. Showing up for buses, practices, games, etc. on time. 2. Refraining from causing undue stress to anyone by misbehaving on road trips or wading into the stands to attack fans. 3. Practicing hard when given the opportunity. 4. Entering games when my team is up by an insurmountable margin and attempting to break the shots-per-minute record. It is not a difficult job, really, and I can find very little to complain about, especially tonight.


Observations from our game vs. the Heat:


1. Dwyane (it kills me to have to write down a blatant typographical error on purpose) Wade is really good.


2. I played for the Kansas City Knights of the ABA (nearly-defunct minor league) for a while last year. This year, the Knights began the season with a promotion involving some ?cheerleaders? and a pole. I am not going to suggest that the Miami Heat just went to some local [gentleman's] club and hired the whole roster as their dance team. Instead, I will simply say that I was impressed with their dancing abilities.


3. It must be a league-wide requirement ? every NBA locker room is provided with fresh fruit prior to the game. The fresh fruit in Miami was easily the worst I have seen all year. Does that make sense?


4. Based on the crowd at the game, the use of silicone per capita in Miami has got to be the highest in the US. All in all, a good night for testing one?s ability to focus through distraction.


On a further tangent, because this is how my brain works, Tom Gugliotta has the worst tattoo in the NBA. The barbed wire on the bicep is bad enough to put him in the running; the fact that it is the dreaded ?I thought I could get away with not having it complete the circumference of my arm? type puts him over the top. It is like wearing a tie that is not only ugly, but is a clip-on to boot. Ugly is at least forgivable; the clip-on aspect makes it reprehensible.


I am afraid Memphis may get kicked out of the league. I could be mistaken, but I think they started three white guys? three American white guys at that. I am pretty sure there is a rule against that somewhere?some kind of quota, I think. Maybe I am wrong. I guess we will find out soon, when they have to bring back the Cincinnati Royals to fill the void the Grizzlies leave behind.



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