September 04, 2008
Create-a-caption? "I could so make a bong out of this."
Pot jokes! Always classy.
Getting caught with marijuana and women that weren't supposed to be there in a hotel room is a brain cramp enough. Getting caught with the contraband while in a compromising situation is another thing. Choosing to risk a bust while in the midst of the NBA's mandatory rookie transition program? Real, real dumb.
We can argue until we're blue in the face about marijuana laws in this country, what's appropriate and what isn't working, but to take this stuff to a hotel on this particular week, when you know you at least have to pretend to be on the up and up?
When you likely have to be in the hotel lobby at 8 am, with the NBA-logo'd polo that the league provided tucked into some khakis that they asked you to bring, ready to board a bus to drive off to some photo op or community outreach program?
With the local improv group that was hired to act out the likely scenarios (some with pot as the main mitigating factor) designed to befall the typical NBA'er likely staying in the same hotel?
When you have to conserve all the energy you can muster to pretend to be interested and nod your head incessantly as a litany of well-meaning speakers detail the pratfalls ahead?
When you know that, while the idea of watching the Republican National Convention on high sounds funny on paper, you hardly need an outside influence to turn that thing into a barrel of laughs.
I don't know what the going rate for a little green bag is, but it has to be the cheapest of all available illegal things. Certainly not prohibitive, even for two second-round picks. And though Arthur and Chalmers claimed that the weed was on the person (always wanted to write that) of their guests, that makes these two look even worse.
So the women didn't want to flush their weed, and you were worried you might fail to be in with a chance should you play the heavy? Well, what's going to impress a classy lady like that more than insisting that she flush the weed, "but here's 500 bucks to buy some more next week, because I know Bob Lanier - or was it Bill Laimbeer? - is going to be checking in when the lights are supposed to go out at 10:30."
Guys, you had all summer to pull this stuff, and you wait until now? Or, you kept it up now, even in this context? Young is young, and young usually means dumb, but this was enough to have Tommy Chong shaking his head.
(Because he smokes weed. Another pot joke.)
Golden State's mascot, upon hearing the official news that the NBA outfit in Oklahoma City will be named the Oklahoma City Thunder.
" ... "
(Thunder doesn't talk.
Some say he never blinks, and that he roams around the woods at night foraging for wolves. Some say that he appears on high value stamps in Sweden, and that he can catch fish with his tongue. Some say that his breath smells of magnesium, and that he's scared of bells. Some say he naturally faces magnetic north, and that all of his legs are hydraulic.
All we know is, he's called "Thunder.")
Expected early-morning hand-wringing regarding Monta Ellis
Henry already came through with a solid take on this, but it's worth noting that the Warriors really, really, really, really should approach any below-the-surface investigation into what really happened to Monta Ellis with kid gloves. And be quite ticked that the news of the investigation, big or small, was even leaked.
After all, even if Monta injured himself in some unsavory way (say, falling off the top of a parked ice cream truck while trying to cripple ducks locked in copulation by chucking M-80s at ‘em from on top of a ... well, you already know about the ice cream truck), the Warriors aren't trying to void his contract. He can recover from that injury, they shouldn't regret the contract extension in any way, and Golden State probably weren't making the playoffs anyway.
The team needed absolutely everything to go right in 2008-09 to have a postseason chance, but that wasn't likely to happen, and at least we have an early answer.
As to the idea that NBA teams can void contracts if it is found that players are willingly jeopardizing their health? It's a good thing. No, it's hardly enforceable. And, yes, taken literally you could argue the most minute details (stuffing your face full of fast food until your early 30s, staying out late, driving too fast) could fall under void-o-ble categories, but these clauses are still good to have in the contracts.
The fear of the unguaranteed deal may not always be enough to keep these players out of harm's way, but it will make a certain segment of the NBA population think twice, and that's enough.
Assuming there's thought involved in the first place.