Welcome to my inner thoughts. You never know where they will take us. To Rajon Rondo's shoes? Or to Portland's old guy rec league also known as the Portland Trailblazers?
- The Jazz currently have the 4th best record in the NBA. That is a little surprising. Even more surprising is that the Heat are only the 5th best team in the East after last night and the Lakers are only the 4th best team in the West with a fairly easy starting schedule. But as we all could have guessed, the 8th seeded teams in each conference tell a story. Phoenix is 11-10 and the Charlotte Bobcats are 8-13. People here in North Carolina couldn't be less concerned with that team either.
- The Jazz's surprising 16-6 record has Jazz fans all over the world clamoring for more national recognition. Jazz fans feel slighted when NBATV doesn't do a whole 30 minute episode just to talk about the Jazz, or ESPN writers don't have them as a real contender yet. But it happens to every team. I didn't know that the Nuggets had won 7 games in a row until I watched them lose to the Bobcats last night. New York has won 7 straight road games and 9 overall. The Knicks are 9-4 on the road. That's impressive and should be noted, but isn't unless you are a Knicks fan. The Mavericks are in the middle of a 10 game win streak, including a win in SLC and no one is talking much about them. And their record isn't even as good as the Spurs, who also go unnoticed. So if you are a Jazz fan, take a minute to pat yourself on the back. You have a good team. Now let that be enough notice, because unless you are a Heat, Laker, or Celtic fan, you will have reason to feel slighted in the near future.
- Speaking of that Dallas team, they are very good. They are versatile, play very, very good defense, have sparks off the bench and a terrific closer in Dirk Nowitzki. We were all very excited about wins over Miami and Orlando and the Lakers, but so far the three best teams in the league are Boston, Dallas and San Antonio, three teams we have yet to beat.
-Speaking of national recognition, ESPN's John Hollinger wrote a piece on the Jazz last Friday. He mentioned that if Lebron had done what he did in Cleveland (walking around like a rooster in front of a city that he already crapped on once) in Salt Lake City, he would have been put on his butt by some Jazz player. I don't know if I agree, but for some reason the Jazz have a tag as being super tough and enforcing. So why didn't anyone do anything to Dirk Nowitzki last Friday? I don't expect cheapshots, but you have to be physical with Dirk and annoy him. Matt Harpring used to be useful against Carmelo Anthony and Dirk Nowitzki for this very reason. Another Jazz player has to take that role the next time we play the Mavs or Nuggets. If you let Dirk Nowitzki spot up and shoot like a pretty boy, he will.
-Speaking of tall guys who can shoot, Tracy McGrady made his untriumphal return to Houston last night. He got some cheers, but mostly boos. McGrady didn't do anything to hurt Houston. It's not his fault that he didn't understand advanced statistics enough to realize that passing to Yao Ming was often a better idea than shooting a fadeaway jumper. Tracy McGrady and Carlos Boozer are a lot alike. They are pretty nice guys who are overrated, but get a lot of the brunt for their teams failures, probably unfairly. I guess my point is that Jazz fans should just be glad that Boozer is gone and move on with our lives.
-I went to New York City last week. Do celebrities in the city walk around just like any other person would? They would have to. It's pointless to drive in Manhattan. While I was thinking this, I saw three really tall guys walking towards me on 59th street. Those guys are tall. Really tall. As I bumped into one of them, I realized it was Kevin Garnett. Guess that answers that question. But if you are reading my inner thoughts, KG, I was the guy who hit your hip with his shoulder on 59th and Lexington. I just wanted to say that I'm sorry. Didn't mean anything by it.
- Heat at Jazz tonight. Should be a great game. The Jazz are selling $23 tickets for only $11. Go support the team and the organization. I promise that i would, if I were in Utah. Besides, there is no better way to beat the bitter cold, than by beating the Heat.