Last night the Utah Jazz held practice, and Enes Kanter was there. He blew a kiss to the media . . . and Jody G, of the Des N. had to vine it.
I love all of this. I love Kanter's personality, his youthfulness, and I love Jody's ever expanding lists of talents. With how funny Basketball John, and Clark, and Yucca, and MyLo is I wonder if there's something in the water supply of these mountain region states.
Anyway, Kanter was not up for media availability last night; over fears of what he would say -- the Thunder's Reggie Jackson and the Suns' Goran Dragic made that decision for the Jazz, as they both restated their opinions of wanting a trade, or doing actually more damage than that.
The problem with trying to keep a tight hold on everything 100% of the time is that you can't do it 100% of the time, and when something bad does come out it's like an over-full septic tank. You're going to end up getting a little dirt on your face when you try to cover it all up again. You can't control the flow of information anymore, especially not when players / families are self-reporting news directly to the world. Your PR tactics should evolve to reflect the change in the game, or you know, continue to employ unsuccessful PR tactics that alienate loyal customers.
In completely unrelated news, the Utah Jazz had actually pretty big news yesterday.
We have a big announcement for fans coming up at 10:30 a.m. this morning!! We think you'll be excited about this. pic.twitter.com/qt0jg9HJBZ— Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) February 18, 2015
Effective Immediately... NO ONLINE FEES at http://t.co/KRSCtZrI5D! You Buy the Tickets. We Cover the Fees. pic.twitter.com/1kZSe5Fx4D— Utah Jazz (@utahjazz) February 18, 2015
They were right, dozens of fans were very excited about it.
Okay @utahjazz, that's actually a very fan friendly thing to do. Kudos. #NoFees— Mylo (@My_Lo) February 18, 2015
Before the announcement was made I had suggested to the SLC Dunk Team that it would be about online ticket sales, perhaps allowing for season ticket holders to be able to resell their tickets for individual games more easily. I was wrong. This is pretty awesome news all jokes aside. The Utah Jazz sales department is doing a great job, that's for sure.
The people over at 538 always do great work for a map / graph nerd like me. They charted out every team's change of winning, by game time. Essentially, what percentage chance do they have to win by what minute of the game they are in.The full article details the process, and has a dynamic graphic that you can use to view every team, a single team, or compare teams. But for now, this is what the Jazz side of the equation looks like!
Check out the full article here, and great job Mike Beuoy and Allison McCann!
If you actually want to talk about the data, in terms of year to year improvement -- the last TWO seasons (last year of Alfense and first year or RJ the God-King) the team was already OUT of the game by the first quarter, and had to play catch up the rest of the way. Here we see that the Jazz are mostly "in it" for the majority of the first half. This is a huge deal, and that's why when the team wins the wins have been much more convincing.
The SB Nation brother/sister/other site OutSports wrote about the changing attitudes amongst a demographic that used to be predominantly ultra-masculine and closed minded about certain topics. Of course, they had to talk about Jarron Collins, Jason Collins, and Karl Malone. I'm not going to force anyone to read this article by Cyd Zeigler, but I felt like it deserved to be noticed here. I like progress, and in my own lifetime I've seen Karl Malone go on national TV around the Magic Johnson / AIDS / HIV+ hysteria and explain his point of view, a view that was based upon widely held ignorance -- and now today display a more mature, and wise opinion on these and other topics.
There has been long-held speculation that people in the black community are on average more homophobic than other demographics. While people can pull stats to back-up whatever their personal position, the truth is this: 1) We all have work to do, and 2) There are many black athletes - some of the greatest of all time - who publicly support LGBT issues and embrace their LGBT family members. Just because you're black, Christian or an athlete, that doesn't make you anti-LGBT.
Check it out if you want, I think it is at least Downbeat worthy. Karl is often demonized in the media -- but not enough to done to show how the Karl Malone of the 80s or 90s isn't the same guy in the 2010s.As an aside, what if Enes Kanter is from the deep South of Turkey, and he, young and scared, may not be the best public speaker either? Just thinking out loud. . .
As for the entire NBA Trade deadline itself, I've been saving this gif up for a big occasion:
I know I rarely post gifs in any of the content I send out there on the web
-- and it's like 10 things a day, every day for years -- but trust me on this one.
I think the deadline will be mostly quiet. Some players will get waived, there will be a few trades, but no blockbusters as far as I can tell. The Nets are having a "FIRE!" sale right now, but only Joe Johnson looks to be on the move. The Nuggets are in a jam, but a bad way. Goran Dragic and his brother Zoran Dragic may be on the move as a package deal. Lance Stephenson and Davis West are in opposite land. ("The important thing is that I'm happy, Pam.") But this is like every season. And unlike every-season, next season everyone has cap space. So it's no big deal.
Most teams will weather the storm, like that little guy up there. Shoveling snow into a shopping cart. Because he doesn't "do" mistakes.