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Posts Tagged ‘NBA’

Beale Street Blues

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on January 27, 2009

Ever since the Grizzlies arrived in Memphis eight years ago, they have tried, and ultimately failed, at righting the ship .

There was the hire of Hubie Brown, which resulted in the franchise’s first playoff appearance in 2004, during the last season at the Pyramid Arena and ended with Brown moving back to the broadcast booth.

Another broadcaster-turned-coach Mike Fratello followed Brown and led the Grizz to the 2005 and 2006 playoffs, only to be let go in the middle of the 2006-07 season giving the Grizzlies their fourth coach since moving here in 2001 in Marc Iavanori.

And like Fratello, Iavanori, who I met during the draft day party at the Flying Saucer on South Second Street in May of last year, would receive his walking papers on January 22nd, a day after the Grizzlies lost to the Charlotte Bobcats for their seventh straight loss.

Personally, I always thought when O.J. Mayo arrived in Memphis the fortunes of the franchise would change, which happens to be the same blind hope that most Grizzlies fans have every year after Rudy Gay/Mike Conley/Shane Battier held a Grizzlies jersey up and said to the world that they were a member of the Grizz.

Trust me, I did.

But when you continuously dish out a disinterested product on the court, filled with, in the words of Geoff Calkins, players that really don’t want to be here in the Bluff City and have a fan base of 5 and 6 year-olds waving pom poms and poor drunks on the corner of North Third and Jefferson begging for change so that they can get a fifth of Jack Daniel’s, then you have to wonder what is really going on in Michael Heisley’s head.

Why would an owner trade the only All-Star the franchise has ever had, as well as the all-time leading scorer in franchise history, only to see him walk to a team filled with a certain Hall-of-Famer and a nucleus of young talent that actually made it to that year’s NBA Finals?

Why would an owner trade two players that were part of that three-year run and in turn would win NBA Championships with their clubs?

I mean, why?

It’s time to face the music, Mr. Heisley.

Seriously.

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Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Beale Street Blues

2008 NBA Draft… Derrick Rose Or Michael Beasley?

Posted by Condo on June 24, 2008

The on-going debate for the Chicago Bulls, the team holding the #1 pick in Thursday’s 2008 NBA Draft is, “Do we take Derrick Rose or do we take Michael Beasley?”

Multiple sources — from what I have read — have said that while the Bulls state they are still “deciding” on who to take, they believe Derrick Rose will be the #1 pick in the draft. After this, apparently the Miami Heat, who hold the #2 pick in the draft, are attempting to trade out of the pick (thus assuming Rose is not on the board) with either Seattle or Memphis.

According to various articles and sources I have found on the internet, Seattle is proposing a swap of their #4 pick plus power forward Chris Wilcox for power forward Mark Blount and the #2 pick. The reason for this deal being intriguing to Miami would be the fact that Blount still has 2 years and 16 million dollars on his contract whereas Wilcox is, what they call in the NBA, an ‘expiring contract’. Simply meaning, his contract runs out after this year is up.

Another rumor involves the Memphis Grizzlies offering point guard Kyle Lowery, shooting guard Mike Miller and their #5 pick for the #2 pick. Miami, however, wants Memphis to sweeten the deal by having Memphis give up last year’s top pick, point guard Mike Conley, instead of Lowery while the Heat would then add in shooting guard Daequan Cook.

Either way, it appears that the Heat have zero interest in Michael Beasley on their team. My question is: WHY???

Beasley is, in fact, the same kid who took a Kansas State team who really wasn’t very good, put them on his back, and led them to the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament, which is no worse than what Kevin Durant did at Texas last year with DJ Augustin, among others, on his team.

Beasley is the same kid who averaged over 26 points a game, led the Nation in rebounding with over 12 per game, was Big 12 Freshman of the Year, Big 12 Player of the Year, a concensus First Team All-American, and probably would’ve been the National Player of the Year if people were not in love with Tyler Hansbrough. If you compare Beasley’s stats to that of last year’s freshman phenom, Kevin Durant, they are actually better.

So someone explain to me why Beasley is most likely going to be passed over by the Bulls for Derrick Rose and why the Heat are trying to trade the pick away?!? Don’t get me wrong, Derrick Rose is a fantastic point guard, but he is not on the same talent level of Michael Beasley. Rose can’t score the way Beasley can, he can’t play in the post, command double teams, rebound, and well, you get the idea.

And please don’t give me the “oh, well Rose has no character issues and Beasley does.” Sure, Beasley seemed to have character issues in high school that probably came from moving from school to school and having a lack of maturity. But, Amare Stoudemire did the same thing, moving from school to school and while he wasn’t a #1 pick because of it, based on his production, you think teams in that draft would LOVE to have a do-over? I think so. Not to mention, you saw zero issues from Beasley of ‘immaturity’ in college, and from what I can tell, all 19-20 year old kids like to have fun and joke around, so it is not just limited to Beasley.

Simply put, while Derrick Rose is a very good player, I just don’t understand why there is even a comparision between he and Michael Beasley. Especially with the Bulls need for an offensive presence in the post. But apparently, actually having ‘fun’ is going to hurt Mr. Beasley in the end if the Bulls do indeed draft Rose.

For Bulls fans sake, if they do infact draft Derrick Rose, they better hope this ‘Mike’ doesn’t turn out to be like the last ‘Mike’ we saw in Chicago, or the team will never live it down.

Link: ESPN.com

Posted in NCAA Basketball | Tagged: , | 6 Comments »

Charles Barkley Is A Turrrble Liar

Posted by Matt on May 21, 2008

Late last week it became public that the legendary Sir Charles owed upwards of $400,000 in gambling debts to the Wynn Las Vegas resort. In Barkley’s defense, he publicly came clean on the issue rather quickly and thanked all of the fans for their support; a rare admittance in an age of denials and we applaud Chuck for that.

But then Barkley added something that made me chuckle (no pun intended), that he would stop gambling completely, at least for now. Right, and Jenna Jameson isn’t going to be… -I’ll stop there as we’re trying to keep it PG-13, but you get the point.

Now that being said, I absolutely love Charles Barkley as I think he can take a joke on himself better than anyone. I also don’t feel that Charles’ gambling habits are really any of our/the media’s business. Guys like Barkley and Jordan have been avid gamblers for years and is it really a problem if someone has so much money that they can afford to lose millions without it adversely affecting their life? Some people spend their money on drugs, others spend their money on lavish automobiles, and Sir Charles and MJ spend theirs in Vegas, baby. Vegas.

I have no doubt that Barkley will be back at it in no time, and though I think he makes for a bad liar I see no reason he should have to lie and no reason why, at this point, his gambling habits are a problem.

When it becomes a problem is when the afternoon horn at the mill sounds and before dinnertime you’re at the riverboats with a twelve pack gambling away this month’s trailer payment while the wife is at home with your three kids — well, at least two that are yours that you’re sure of.

Linkage: ESPN.com

And now we leave you with the gratuitous Charles Barkley golf shot video:

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

I Want Isiah’s (New) Job

Posted by Matt on April 22, 2008

As many of you probably already know or most of you probably don’t care, Isiah Thomas was relieved of his duties as head coach by team president Donnie Walsh — who also happens to be Isiah’s current successor in the presedential position. So what will Isiah being doing, you ask?!:

“He will not have an official title, but he will provide meaningful input to me.”

Epic. And just what kind of meaningful input is Isiah going to provide? Maybe which female coworkers Donnie can make sexually suggestive behaviors to without consequence? Maybe…

Additionally, he will report directly to Walsh but Isiah but won’t have anyone reporting to him. Oh yeah, he’s also banned from contacting any members of the team.

So what IS Isiah going to be doing for $18.0M? No title, no subordinates, no contact, NO RESPONSIBILITIES!

I want Isiah’s new job…and that hat, too.

Linkage:

ESPN.com

NorthJersey.com

ESPN.com

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

There’s Still Time On The Clock, Just Push It Up The Floor

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on April 17, 2008

Every baseball fan young and old knows all too well about the story of the Dodgers’ move to Los Angeles and how, after 50 years of major league baseball in Southern California, Walter O’Malley’s name in Brooklyn is still spoken with a sense of complete dislike.

Fast-forward to 2008, where instead of close-knit Brooklynites begging for the Dodgers not to depart from Flathbush, a city and a former owner is fighting like crazy to keep their beloved NBA team in the city of their origin.

Going into the 2007-08 NBA season, the Seattle Sonics weren’t among anyone’s list of contenders in the Western Conference. Although the Sonics did strike gold by drafting Kevin Durant, who will nonetheless become this year’s Rookie of the Year, the Sonics were making more news away from the hardwood than on it throughout this season.

As many of us NBA fans know, the Hornets, like many of the pro teams around the New Orleans area, were evacuated because of Hurricane Katrina to temporary sites.

With the Hornets it was Oklahoma City, home to a gleaming showplace for basketball in the Ford Center, which in recent years has hosted the Big 12 Conference Tournament.

While the arrangement between the Hornets and the city was short-term and successful, another Oklahoman is trying his best to do the same thing that Walter O’Malley, more than 50 years ago, allegedly did.

Break the hearts of a loyal fan base.

Oklahoma City businessman Clay Bennett is trying to obtain permission from the NBA to move the Pacific Northwest’s oldest major pro sports team, the Seattle Sonics, to Oklahoma City and thereby doing something that could not be done with the Hornets: sustain a long-term presence of pro basketball in Oklahoma City.

But it’s not going away without a fight.

As we speak, Washington senators are doing everything in their power to stop the move by filing lawsuits, bringing in a former owner to get the team back and keep it in Seattle, something that the people of Brooklyn would have never envisioned doing 50 years ago when their Dodgers traded Flatbush for Hollywood.

But much like the Dodgers, the Sonics have been an instution in Seattle.

And barring a last-second shot, Clay Bennett is going to join the ranks of Horace Stoneham and Walter O’Malley as the most hated owners in sports history.

Too bad, because Seattle was getting used to seeing Kevin Durant and possibly seeing the team get back into contention in the West.

But because of a hillbilly, that won’t be the case.

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

Houston’s Streak Ends At 22

Posted by Bob Swerski on March 19, 2008

After asking Mutombo if the Rockets will win it all…

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^”no no no no no no no…”

There has been a lot of talk recently about Houston’s hot streak which ended Tuesday night in embarrassing fashion to the Celtic’s.  After losing by 20 points to end the second longest win streak in NBA history I am left with only 1 question… Who cares?  So what if they won 22 games in a row, it wont mean anything when they lose in the first round of the playoffs like they do every year they make it.  I am reminded of only a few months ago when all the talk was about the Patriots amazing streak and how they were unbeatable, and I’m sure if Tiger was playing at the time they all would have tried to compare it to that.  Well, we all know how that story ended and do you hear anyone talking about the amazing Patriot’s streak of 18 in a row?

My point?  That if the Rockets don’t win the big games and end up as champions, then this streak goes down as absolutely meaningless.  If anything it proves that the Rockets, and specifically Tracy McGrady, can’t win in the playoffs.  A few months from now when Houston loses in the first round (because they wont get the bye), everyone can talk about how right I was and how the Rockets aren’t really that good of a basketball team.  The most troubling thing is that Houston point guard Rafer Alston said “Our names will be mentioned there with Hall of Fame people.”  How jaded can you be?  1.  I’ve never even heard of Rafer Alston, and 2.  A lot of people who come in second place for a streak and then fail to win any kind of championship are in the same discussion as Hall of Famers… oh wait, that MAKES NO SENSE.  This streak will only be remembered when the next brilliant team makes a huge streak, and you know what they will say?  “This streak is comparable to the 2008 Houston Rockets, only unlike that team, this one will probably win the NBA Championship.

Houston Sucks.

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

The Only Time Devean George Has Played Defense

Posted by Matt on February 13, 2008

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Let’s be honest…I don’t know jack shit about Devean George or his defense.  What I do know is that he went to some college I’ve never heard of (Augsburg?), is a 5.9 points per game guy, and makes a SHIT LOAD of money for 13 minutes per game — to the tune of $2.4 million to be exact.  Below is probably a better representation of Devean sitting on a bench with his warmups on:

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I circled him for your convenience.  You know, I really do way too much for you guys.

Oh yeah, defense.  He blocked some trade he was involved in with some guy name Jason Kidd to a team in Dallas that apparently has a crazy owner…I don’t really know.  Hey, look…Flava of Love is on…

Linkage: ESPN.com

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

Steve Nash To Star In Dumb & Dumber 3

Posted by Matt on December 13, 2007

lloydnash.jpg lloydchristmas.jpg

“The first time I set eyes on Mary Swanson, I just got that old fashioned romantic feeling where I’d do anything to bone her.”

Steve Nash did his best Lloyd Christmas impression last night after taking an elbow to the chops from Carlos Boozer and apparently living to tell about it. We obviously love Steve Nash — even if he is Canadian — as you’d think that he appears to be in over is head in then NBA then he goes on to win 20 NBA MVP Awards in a row.

Anways, after the injury timeout the Phoenix Suns went on to beat the Utah Jazz 103-95 and Christmas Nash went for an astounding 29 points, 11 assists, and 6 rebounds despite being down half a tooth.

Video linkage (because I am incapable of embedding ESPN videos): ESPN.com

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Pacers Won’t Punish Tinsley, Apparently Being Shot At Was Enough

Posted by Matt on December 11, 2007

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Actual ESPN.com headline: “Pacers decide not to punish Tinsley for involvement in shooting”

Now, I am not even sure why the Pacers might be considering punishing Tinsley.  I understand he has quite the history and he admittedly put himself at the wrong place, at the wrong time, with the wrong people, but the early report states that Tinsley was not carrying a firearm and wasn’t the one doing the shooting.  It seems awfully tough to discipline someone who was being shot at by a .223 caliber made-for-modern-warefare assault rifle.   Usually I take a strict stance on situations like this and it certainly won’t bode well for the image of the NBA, but I think the prospect of death by firearm is punishment enough.

Because it was punishment enough for me when I was shot at — but I guess I should’ve expected that reaction for trying to steal a gun from a cop.  Hey, what can I say, they triple-dog-dared me…

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , | Comments Off on Pacers Won’t Punish Tinsley, Apparently Being Shot At Was Enough

‘Buike Doing His Thing

Posted by Matt on November 9, 2007

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Former University of Kentucky stud Kelenna Azubuike continues to do “his thing” for the Golden State Warriors as ‘Buike went for his first double-double of the season with 27 points on 50% shooting and 11 rebounds to go along with 4 assists and a steal in 43 minutes of play. The Warriors had a Cinderella-esque run in last year’s Playoffs but are struggling out of the gate early this season at 0-5. It is, however, nice to see Kelenna doing well (and getting paid – $687, 456 this season with his stock steadily rising) as not only is he a former Wildcat but always seemed to be a real class act that was hit with some misfortunes during his Kentucky career that forced him in to the NBA a year early.

Nothing but the best of luck is wished upon all of our former Wildcats as it is always nice to see the program represented in the NBA.

Congrats, Kelenna and thanks for making the Bluegrass proud!

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UPDATE: Jeff Shelman of ESPN.com has a good read on Tubby Smith from yesterday: Smith and Minnesota an unlikely pairing.

The same aforementioned good luck wishes are bestowed upon former coaches as well regardless if they are out of, or still in, the coaching ranks. I have always been a Tubby Smith fan/supporter and look forward to following the continuance of his career in Minnesota.

Posted in Kentucky Wildcats | Tagged: , | 4 Comments »

Vick’s Week Just Got Worse

Posted by Matt on August 29, 2007

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As if Vick didn’t have it bad enough after pleading guilty on Monday and apologizing in front of an entire nation, the majority of whom probably now hate him, Ron Artest has come out in support of Vick, saying he would like to “reach out” to the fallen quarterback (link – ESPN.com).

I think the last thing Vick wants to hear now is that he’s now being publicly backed by this guy:

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Artest doesn’t particularly bring a lot of credibility to a legal case and I am not sure of many who would want Artest on their fighting side. Well literally speaking they would, obviously, but figuratively speaking, not a chance.

Posted in NFL | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

Donaghy: “Tonight we dine in Hell.”

Posted by Matt on August 18, 2007

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Last Update By Matt: August 18, 2007 at 12:07PM EST – added: Orange update.

UPDATE BY MATT 08/18/07 AT 12:07PM EST: In a move that can only be described as “if I am going down, everybody is coming with me,” Donaghy will reportedly implicate 20 other NBA referees in part of the gambling scandal he finds himself knee-deep in. This sounds like a simple case of one trying to negotiate his/her on plea bargain as I don’t expect Tim wants to spend 25 years in what Michael Bolton would call “pound me in the ass prison.” The problem is that you are not afforded the opportunity to make your own plea bargain and he can provide the prosecution with all the names he wants, but if the FBI hasn’t found any evidence on the names he spews out and the Referee’s Union maintains Donaghy acted alone, he’ll only look like the boy who cried ‘wolf.’ Now that Tim has plead ‘guilty,’ we can all sit back and watch how ridiculous this gets.

I look for the odds on “will David Stern/the Referee’s Union/the mob put a hit on Donaghy to silence him” to open up at 9-to-1.

Link: Referees union maintains Donaghy acted alone (MSNBC.com)

UPDATE BY MATT 08/17/2007 AT 4:10PM EST: Tim Donaghy could face charges in Arizona regarding a fix on not one, but two Phoenix Suns playoff games refereed by Donaghy; “Condos” The NBA Conspiracy Theory is more possible than anyone originally thought, maybe for different motives but scary nonetheless. Read it.

Link: Arizona officials eyeing Donaghy’s call in Suns’ game (ESPN.com)

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , | 1 Comment »

Who Wants To Be A Commissioner?

Posted by Charlie Hustle on August 2, 2007

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“The Nasty Boys” would like to introduce the new running blog:

Who has the worst commissioner job?

We will consistently update the three commissioners’ problems and their recent scandals.

We would also encourage you to VOTE for the worst commish job in the COMMENTS SECTION.

The Candidates:

Bud Selig – Bud Selig, the former owner of the Milwaukee Brewers and idolizer of Home Run King Hank Aaron, has announced that he will be following the next games of Barry Bonds. He made the following statement…

“Out of respect for the tradition of this game, the magnitude of the record, and the fact that all citizens in this country are innocent until proven guilty, I will attend Barry Bonds’ next games to observe his potential tying and breaking of the home run record, subject to my commitments to the Hall of Fame this weekend.”

As Lewis Black said on The Daily Show, “HE’S USING CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS TO JUSTIFY HAVING TO WATCH A BASEBALL GAME!!!”

The heat on Bonds officially turned up a notch when the book, “Game of Shadows” came out, extensively describing Bonds’ and others’ steroid use through BALCO. Selig’s comment at the time of the book?…

“It was worse than I thought.”

With Federal indictments on hold due to Bonds’ trainer Greg Anderson refusing to testify and sitting in jail in contempt (and collecting checks from Bonds while in the clink), Selig’s only course was to hire former Senator George Mitchell to lead a weak investigation of players “volunteering” information.

So now Bud Selig has to fly to San Francisco and pretend to celebrate the most celebrated record in sports, held by his childhood hero, and about to be broken by a guy with a 9 3/4 inch head and shoes bigger than Shaq’s.

David Stern – After looking like someone had just run over his dog in his latest press conference, David Stern is embroiled in one of the NBA’s biggest scandals in its history.

Currently, Stern is the longest tenured and probably most powerful commissioner in American sports, serving as commissioner for the last 23 years. However, this didn’t stop Tim Donaghy from betting on games, apparently desperate for money after losing to “mobbed-up” sports bookies.

Stern commented, “I can tell you that this is the most serious situation and worst situation that I have ever experienced either as a fan of the NBA, a lawyer for the NBA or a commissioner of the NBA.”

Not only is the integrity of the NBA highly in doubt at this point, but Donaghy’s games can be re-watched and analyzed, questioned about whether the fix was in or not. Every questionable call from now on in any NBA game will now be heckled by fans, “HEY DONAGHY! HOW MUCH DO YOU HAVE ON THIS ONE?!?!?”

The most damning evidence was that as late as 2005, Donaghy was being investigated for gambling. Stern claimed he couldn’t answer the obvious question as to why this wasn’t addressed sooner, saying that the FBI specifically asked him not to comment on the investigation….

Meanwhile, Stern is stuck having to answer questions on the very essence and integrity of his game.

Roger Goodell – After suspending Chris Henry and PacMan Jones under the new Player Behavior Policy, all seemed calm on the homefront for Roger Goodell. As Charles Barkley said,

“Pacman and Henry, man they is habitual fools!”

Now that Vick has been indicted on ‘Federal Dog Genocide’ charges, it would appear that the second coming of the OJ trial is on our hands. A few years earlier, Vick had signed the largest contract in NFL history, becoming the face for the league. Now, we’re a few more damning charges from a high-speed chase in a white Bronco, with Al Cowlings calling in to the police….

“This is A.C.! I got O.J., I mean Vick, in the car! (pause) This is A.C.! You know who this is, —damnit!”

Even Arthur Blank, noted Vick apologist, referred to him only as “the player” in his latest press conference, noting that the “player” was referenced 50 times in his indictment. 50 TIMES! Considering that 95% of Federal indictments are successful in their prosecution, it’s amazing that some people are still holding on to the “innocent until proven guilty” defense.

As Colin Cowherd noted something along these lines, “This is the NFL. Not a court. If a reasonable person can look at the evidence and decide that he is clearly guilty, then we as REASONABLE people don’t have to rely on courts that drag out for years and years.”

So now America’s most popular sport is in the news for one of its most popular players electrocuting and mass murdering dogs. Talk about ruining the momentum leading into NFL training camp. Worse yet, Goodell had to hire ex-FBI and ex-CIA agents to dig up some “indisputable facts” that would allow them to suspend Vick indefinitely without going through the courts.

WHICH BEGS THE QUESTION….

WHO HAS THE WORST JOB AS LEAGUE COMMISSIONER:

SELIG, STERN, OR GOODELL

PLEASE VOTE IN THE COMMENTS SECTION BELOW!

Charlie Hustle

Posted in MLB, NFL | Tagged: , | 8 Comments »

KG Trade Rumors Finally Over, Garnett now a Celtic

Posted by Condo on July 31, 2007

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After weeks and months of speculation on where the 6’11” All-Star forward would end up, ESPN is reporting that Kevin Garnett is now a member of the Boston Celtics.  In an unprecedented 7 for 1 trade (when you include the draft picks as players), the Celtics gave up forward Al Jefferson, forward Ryan Gomes, guard Gerald Green, guard Sebastian Telfair, center Theo Ratliff, two first-round draft picks, and cash considerations to get their man in Kevin Garnett.

This gives Boston 3 all-stars in Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, and Kevin Garnett, and puts the Celtics in ‘win now’ mode that can only be attempted (with success) in the Eastern Conference.

Although the Wolves gave up their prized player in Garnet, they did acquire quite a bit for him and should be pleased with the deal in an effort to help them get better in the future.  The Wolves got Al Jefferson, is a 22 year old up and coming star who plays the same position that Garnett played (power forward), they acquire an expiring contract in Theo Ratliff, 3 young players in Gomes, Green and Telfair who are 24, 21, and 22 years old respectively.  PLUS the Wolves get two first-round draft picks and cash in the deal as well.

The fact is, the Wolves had no choice but to trade Garnett after shopping him feverishly around the time of the draft, and had a deal in place with Boston earlier, before Garnett basically said he had no interest in playing in Boston.  That of course was before the Celtics went out and acquired Ray Allen from Seattle and KG realized that with Allen, Pierce, and himself,  the trio could legitimately make a run at winning the Eastern Conference even if the rest of their supporting cast was 9  people that they brought in from the Dunkin Donuts next to the arena.

Overall, I think both teams did what they felt they had to do, Ainge and the Celtics went out and acquired Garnett to take advantage of a shot to win an Eastern Conference title right now, and the McHale and the Wolves took advantage of the fact that the Celtics wanted Garnett and would basically give up the whole team to get him.

Short term, I think Boston gets the better of this trade, but in 3 to 5 years, this could be looked at as the trade that made the Timberwolves organization a strong organization for many years to come.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on KG Trade Rumors Finally Over, Garnett now a Celtic

David Stern’s Press Conference Bullet Points

Posted by Matt on July 24, 2007

I just finished watching David Stern’s press conference regarding Tim Donaghy and the gambling crisis in the NBA.  Just to simplify the hour+ and question and answer session, here are a few bullet points from what was said:

  • The NBA was notified by the FBI on June 20, 2007 of the allegations that were beginning to surface but was told to keep quiet about it until further notice.
  • The NBA was aware in January of 2005, however, of Mr. Donaghy’s possible personal issues including erratic behavior, anger-management problems, as well as possible gambling before becoming a referee.
  • Tim Donaghy resigned on July 9, 2007 but Stern and the NBA wanted to take action on Mr. Donaghy sooner but was told by the FBI to keep quiet in order to aid the investigation.
  • Stern called this the “most serious situation and worst situation” he has ever been involved with but claimed that with all of the resources available to him, he can say, with some confidence, that this is a completely “isolated situation.”
  • Stern outlined the league’s policies (no gambling, etcetera) said that even if you do your best at securing the league, it may not stop wrong doing, especially if they’re as determined as Mr. Donaghy was; calling him a “rogue.”
  • Stern stated that the NBA will do everything in its power to “assure the fans they are doing the best they possibly can” regarding looking back and analyzing games and fixing this problem.
  • Stern said that the policies regarding referees will be more transparent in the future and that the referees will be graded more stringently.
  • The league looked in to allegations that Donaghy bet in a casino in Atlantic City during this investigation and these allegations came up frivolous, on top of the fact that the NBA works closely with the Nevada Gaming Commission and Las Vegas odds-makers to observe any abnormal or erratic movement in betting lines that the NBA should be aware of.  There is no sports gambling in Atlantic City, however.
  • David Stern laid out his entire security system for the NBA to prove that the league was doing everything it could to prevent this and this wasn’t the fault of a systematic flaw.

Mixed emotions from analysts regarding David Stern’s comments as some are not satisfied (see: Skip Bayless, former referee Mike Mathis) with all of the points made by Stern saying he was too much on the defensive in trying to prove that this was not the fault of his security system.

More to come…

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

It Happens Every Spring

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on July 23, 2007

As a Cardinals fan, I have forgiven Don Denkinger for blowing a call on a close play in Game 6 of the 1985 World Series against the Royals, although I was only a year old and didn’t understand the true meaning of being a Cardinals fan.

But for Suns fans, the impending investigation surrounding NBA referee Tim Donaghy about alleged betting has brought something that every man, child, or woman in Phoenix knew since Bruce Bowen tried to do his best Jackie Chan imitation to Steve Nash in Game 3 of the Western Conference Semifinals, that the Spurs-Suns series was without question, a botched one.

And the sad part about this is the fact that Donaghy was indeed one of the officials working the game that fateful night in San Antonio, which all leads us in the blogosphere and media to have second thoughts about the Western Conference playoffs that was held this past year.

To me, it’s under a cloud of suspicion that in a way, the Western Conference’s half in the 2007 playoffs were in one way or another, fixed.

You have a team that is owned by a vocal critic of David Stern (Mark Cuban), a team that was all but picked to win the NBA title (Phoenix), and Mr. Stern’s favorite team (Spurs) in the same playoff bracket.

And when you have a mob-led ref doing some games in each of the four series, then there’s some reason for concern.

But as long as you’re Mr. Stern, you can disregard it and sweep it away from public view, only to realize that sooner or later, it’s all going to come out.

And when it comes out, the floodgates will open and then you’ll be left with egg on your face as the laughingstock.

No matter how much you try to make the game more corporate, the gig as a league trying to improve its image is up, Mr. Stern.

Now take your punishment as a man.

Posted in General Sports | Tagged: , | Comments Off on It Happens Every Spring

Tim Donaghy Update

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on July 23, 2007

I’ll have a column up on the blog on Tuesday or Wednesday, but I have some more news to pass along about Tim Donaghy, the NBA referee accused of betting on games.

According to a report from the Associated Press, Florida lawmen are now protecting Donaghy due to a high volume of threatning phone calls to his house in Bradenton, Florida.,this report coming a few minutes ago through the wires. There will be a statement from David Stern either later today or tomorrow morning concerning Donaghy, so stay posted as we bring you the latest on Tim Donaghy and Michael Vick.

Matt’s Addition:

“Charlie Hustle” shot me the link to this video earlier today, we will try to put up evidence and what not as we find it and eventually we’ll have editorial pieces as well.  But for the time being, we have to really look at the evidence first and wait and see what other details come out.

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Saturday Morning Notes, NBA Fixing, And More!

Posted by Matt on July 21, 2007

Baseball has steroids.  Football has dog fighting.  Basketball just couldn’t be left out.  With the memories of “Malace in the Palace” faint, basketball could no longer stand to be outdone by the “other two” major sporting leagues in this country; especially with thugs like Ron Artest and referee Joey Crawford sitting idly this off season.  No, not to be out done, news hit the wires last night that referee Tim Donaghy bet on NBA games, including ones that he refereed in, giving a strong possiblity to fixing such games.  Thought “Condo’s” The NBA Conspiracy Theory (link) only stood an extreme outside chance of being realistic?  Think again.  With the FBI already involved, this could stand to be the biggest blow to the NBA since….well, ever, and could be the greatest sport-gambling controversy since the “Black Sox Scandal” of 1919.  What the NBA DOESN’T need is another black eye but, well, that is just what they got; and a big one at that.

Much more as this story develops…

More ‘Saturday Morning Notes’ for our faithful viewing public:

  • The “Michael Vick Adventures” continue to roll on here at “The Nasty Boys” as we’ve now learned that PETA will be protesting the trial and/or NFL season on top of the fact that Nike has pulled Vick’s upcoming shoe from the shelves.  Ron Mexico will be arraigned Thursday, July 26, 2007 in front of a Federal judge and still stands an outside shot of recieiving state-charges in the state of Virginia to go along with his smorgasboard of Federal ones.
  • The Cincinnati Reds lost a tough one, 2-10, to the Florida Marlins last night to snap a four-game winning streak.  As has been stated before, starting pitcher Kyle Lohse is wildly inconsistent and has been all season long.  He’ll show flashes of greatness over one or two games and then completely falls apart for a handful of starts.  If his agent still believes that, after last night’s 6-and-2/3-innings and 4-earned run performance, Lohse can garner as much as Gil Meche in the open market than he is wildly over estimating Kyle’s selling power.  Bobby Livingston takes the hill against Byung-Hyun Kim in game three of four.  First pitch is at 7:05PM EST.
  • Sergio Garcia continues to lead the British Open at 6-under through two rounds of play with big names such as Davis Love III and Phil Mickelson missing the cut (5-over).  My picks, Tiger Woods and Jim Furyk, were 7-back and 4-back respectively.

By the way, the ESPN Sportsnation poll of the day today was “Which accusation is most disturbing to you as a sports fan?”  The obvious choices were: Bonds and steroids, Vick and dog fighting, or Donaghy and fixing.  The American people chose Donaghy and fixing over Vick and dog fighting 45% to 40%, with Bonds and steroids limping home at 15%.  I cannot even begin to explain how ridiculous this is.  No matter how severe this gambling scenario plays out, it will ALWAYS PALE IN COMPARISON TO DOG FIGHTING AND ABSOLUTE CRUELTY TO ANIMALS.  I do not know, especially with how the question was worded (see: “disturbing”), how anyone can begin to think that gambling is more disturbing than dog fighting.

Unbelievable.

-No NASCAR this weekend so there will be no preview; Brickyard 400 coverage starts next week.  I’ll be out of the office for the remainder of the day until tomorrow afternoon so “Condo” will be around to get you through it all.  Until then, enjoy your sports controversies, everybody!!

-Matt

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Morons + Money = Jail Time

Posted by Bob Swerski on July 17, 2007

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Suspensions in a “Goodell” like way have been handed out to some off the trash of the NBA. Both Mark Jackson and Ron Artest have been given a 7-game suspension for off the court incidents involving a gun in the case Jackson and domestic violence in the case of Artest. This begs the question that why, when you mix players like Artest, Jackson, Pacman Jones, Tank Johnson, or practically anyone from the Bengals with large amounts of cash, you get people “making it rain” or holding a mock shootout of the OK Corral at a local strip club. The better question is, why do you only see things like these in the NFL and the NBA, but in a sport like baseball you have what seems to be far less off the court (field) altercations.

Part of the problem some might say is that race plays a part in the altercations, and this is true, but at the same time MLB is one of the most racially integrated leagues in professional sports. You simply don’t see the amount of people using their fame and money to commit crimes in baseball as you do in the other 2 big major league sports.

The reason I think this is the case is because unlike the NFL and NBA you are grown up from the small age to have role-models. Many kids who played Little League (myself included) had coaches and teammates that were related, or were close friends, with the same ideals which you had. The league was organized and players were held accountable for their actions. I remember a kid getting thrown out of Little League for a year for constantly getting into trouble with the police. This idea of responsibility is ingrained in the psyche of the young players.

The NFL and NBA aren’t able to reach kids at a young age as effectively as that of MLB. Pacman Jones, for instance, wasn’t going to abandon his “boys” from the hood, even though these individuals lead him to nothing but trouble. There is a simple thing in which the NFL and NBA can do to increase the quality of players in their leagues and that is to organize leagues in the inner-city and promote healthy lifestyles among the young people that enjoy playing their respective sports. Instead of sending their players to Africa to help starving people, which Artest is doing now and is a very good deed, send them to the inner-city of places like Chicago, New York, LA, etc. and start up a basketball league for kids to join where they can not only play the game of basketball in an organized environment, but they can learn life lessons, have leaders on and off the court, and learn to take responsibility for their actions. They can either keep watching fights break out in the stands with the crowd, gun battles at bars, drinking and driving at 3:00AM from the club, more jail time, prison sentences, and crime, or they can reach out to the communities which support basketball and football and help the people their mature into good individuals instead of criminals with millions of dollars.

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Committment To Losing

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on July 15, 2007

If you’re a Grizzlies fan and are reading this, please don’t be offended by the byline of this column because well, it’s the honest truth.

Ever since the Grizzlies have arrived here in Memphis, we’ve seen Jason Williams blow up at Geoff Calkins, Shane Battier trading in Beale Street Blue for Rockets Red, and the departure of the guy who transformed this franchise from the league’s laughing stock to playoff contender and back.

Not to mention the fact that during the beginning part of October last year, Brian Davis and Christian Laettener tried to buy the franchise, only to leave everyone in Memphis with egg on their face.

Now, with the Grizzlies’ signing of Darko, we now know that the direction the Grizzlies are going in isn’t a direction that would lead to a parade down Beale Street in the next five years.

It’s a direction that is going to quickly turn this franchise back into what it once was prior to the arrival of Logo, even before they set foot into this city, turning the FedEx Forum into the cold and dank cauldron of losing – – which would be a shame to this franchise as well as this city.

I’m sure deep down, the Grizzlies realize that they play in the rough-and-tumble Western Conference, which is equivalent to playing in the ACC in college basketball, and the 1950’s big men bullshit doesn’t work when you’re facing a Dallas or San Antonio.

But with signings like this, you would have to wonder, what is the goal of the Grizzlies’ front office?

Be honest, are the Grizz committed to losing?

You tell me.

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Talk of Trade Fizzles, Nocioni Signs With Da Bulls

Posted by Bob Swerski on July 7, 2007

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Now I am on record as hating the NBA and all that it stands for, but alot of action has been happening in Chicago, so there  is a need to stay slightly informed.  The Memphis Grizzlies can waste their money trying to get Andres Nocioni from Da Bulls, but their efforts only proved to cost them money and receive nothing in return.  The rumor mill has been churning around the Bull’s forward and the idea of him possibly playing in Memphis.  However, in a recent press conference, Bulls GM John Paxon has denied that their have even been talks of trade between the 2 teams.  Paxon has stated that he vows to match any offer made by other teams, and Nocioni has come forward saying “he plans to be a Chicago Bull for his entire career.”  However, Memphis has been shelling out money left and right to try and entice Nocioni to join their team.  These rumors can be put to rest today as Nocioni signed a contract reportedly worth $38 Million over 5 years. Ensuring that the Bulls’ active approach this off-season will secure them a spot once again in the Playoffs.

Other off season moves might include signing either veteran big man Joe Smith from Philly or Chris Mihm from the Lakers.  I will keep you posted if Da Bulls decide to make any moves.

P.J. Brown still hasn’t decided if he will play another year or retire at the age of 37.  It is likely that he will not play for the Bulls if he does return.  My guess is that we will return and will play for the Dallas Mavericks who have expressed interest in him.

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Latest KG Trade Rumors

Posted by Condo on June 26, 2007

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ESPN.com is now reporting that talks of a 4-way trade that would have sent Kevin Garnett to the Lakers have fallen apart, but a new proposal has popped up. The new proposal is a three team trade between the Celtics, Timberwolves, and Suns.

The trade would look like this: Phoenix gets Kevin Garnett, Boston gets Shawn Marion, Minnesota gets the #5 pick in the draft and ‘players from Boston’.

I am assuming the players that Boston included would be the same players that Chad Ford mentions in an earlier article involving the 4-way trade with the Lakers. Those players would be Gerald Green, Theo Ratliff, and Sebastian Telfair. Now whether or not Boston will part with all three of them remains to be seen, but that’s the latest rumor floating around and it appears to make sense for all parties involved.  The sticking point on this trade will be if Boston can get Marion to sign to an extension, as he’s eligible to opt out of his contract after next season and had said last week he did not want to play in Boston or Minnesota.

Garnett and Nash have become good buddies over the years from playing with each other in All-Star games and over the summer, and those two paired with Amare Stoudamire, Leandro Barbosa, and the rest of that Suns cast, could spell torture for everyone else in the Western Conference.

I think if Phoenix can pull off this trade without giving Stoudamire and other pieces, it’s a fantastic trade for them as they were already going to be moving Marion anyways.  For Boston, they get the impact player to put alongside Paul Pierce that they’ve been looking for and could now make a push for the playoffs in the weak Eastern Conference.  As for Minnesota, they pick up the #5 pick, to go along with pick #7, an expiring contract in Theo Ratliff and two young players in Gerald Green and Sebastian Telfair who could maybe help out and fit in with the young nucleus Minnesota is starting to put together.   This all but guarantees no playoffs in 2007-2008 and another lottery pick, but it also ensures them cap relief to make a push for a big name free agent in the 2008 class such as Gilbert Arenas for example.

If this deal goes through, I am sure Kobe will throw another tantrum about having another chance to acquire a star player to help the team out and Laker management not following through.  And then he’ll AGAIN ask for a trade and be at the spotlight of trade talk, just as he wants.

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Lakers Reportedly In Trade Talks Involving Kevin Garnett

Posted by Condo on June 26, 2007

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As I am sure most everyone has read on ESPN.com by now there has been reported trade talks amongst the Lakers, T’Wolves, and Pacers regarding a trade involving Kevin Garnett leaving Minnesota for L.A. There is mention of a fourth team being involved in the deal as well and that team appears to be the Boston Celtics.

The trade would work something like this:
The Lakers would get Garnett from Minnesota, the Pacers would get Lamar Odom and Andrew Bynum from the Lakers, the Celtics would get Jermaine O’Neal from the Pacers, and the Wolves would get Al Jefferson and the #5 pick in this year’s NBA Draft from the Celtics.

This seems like it would be a good deal for everyone, except the Boston Celtics, who were exploring a trade involving trading the #5 pick, Jefferson, and others that don’t even need to be mentioned for Garnett, until Garnett said he did not want to play for Boston and would opt out of his contract next season if traded there. This of course caused Boston to back down from their offer.

ESPN Insider Chad Ford is reporting now that the Celtics, rather than sending the #5 pick and Jefferson to the Wolves, would send the #5 pick, Sebastian Telfair, Theo Ratliff, and Gerald Green to the Wolves instead. At first glance, you would think the Wolves are getting the very short end of the deal by giving up Garnett and getting really only the #5 pick to show for it. But if they can convince L.A. that the only way KG is going to leave is if they also send them their 1st round pick at #19, that could be a great deal considering it would give them 3 first round picks in a deep draft; not to mention ridding themselves of Garnett’s contract and Theo’s expiring contract at the end of this upcoming season, giving them room to pursue a big name free agent in next year’s free agency. Even if they can’t get the Lakers #19 pick, it’s still not as bad of a deal as one may seem.

In the same article on ESPN’s TrueHoop, they mention that the Suns, who don’t pick until #24, are reportedly working out top lottery pick talents Joakim Noah, Corey Brewer, and Jeff Green today. If this is the case, their agents must feel that Phoenix is really going to move up in the draft. Draft Express is reporting that by bringing in Noah, Brewer, and Green would be a sure-fire sign that Phoenix is going to be trading for the #5 or #7 pick, which Boston and Minnesota have respectively. If that’s the case, it looks like the Suns have chosen Amare Stoudamire over Shawn Marion as their egos began clashing this season and one of them was going to have to go at some point.

My guess is that if the first deal involving Garnett is true, then Marion’s heading to Minnesota in a separate deal on draft day for the #7 pick. It makes even more sense for Minnesota to trade Garnett for the #5 pick and hold their ground to make L.A. give up the #19 pick as well.

But the biggest part of all of this… will trading for ‘The Big Ticket’ be enough to keep Kobe from still wanting out of L.A? Stay tuned…

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Charlie’s Sports Notes

Posted by Charlie Hustle on June 25, 2007

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Which one is the mascot?

The Reds officially have the worst record in baseball today This announcement brought to you by JTM’s dancing Bag O’Meat! It’s Bag O’Meat, meat patties in a bag with a plastic zipper! Eat JTMs… they haven’t terminally poisoned Chris Welsh… yet!

For the upcoming NBA Draft…

Candidate A: “I consider myself a role player. I understand people are projecting me a top pick, and those guys are supposed to be franchise guys. But I’m not that kind of guy who needs to come in and take over.”

Candidate B: “I’ve been training to be a franchise player since I was 9. That’s the first time I told my parents I was serious about getting to the NBA.”

Candidate A = Greg Oden

Candidate B = Kevin Durant…. umm who would you want #1?

If your own self-run NFL website runs this, you will probably not be a factor in the playoffs….

Defense/Special Teams

Projected Draft Range: Undrafted
2006 Stats: 35 sacks, 31 TO, 1 TD, 20.7 PA

“The Bengals team defense will likely go undrafted in most drafts as fantasy players will recall the perception of the NFL’s 30th-ranked defense. ”

….. Yes Bengals.com writers, fans will probably remember the “perception” of a swiss cheese, no-account defense. More people will apply for Tank Johnson’s bodyguard work than will draft the Bengals defense in fantasy leagues.

Apparently even retired, bald ex-Mariner teammates of Junior can predict the future…

Griffey had dinner Thursday night with former Mariners teammate Jay Buhner. The close friend must have been keeping up with the struggling 29-47 Reds.

“Jay actually called today’s game the first day I was here,” Griffey said. “He said, ‘Knowing your luck, you’re going to hit a couple of home runs and you’re going to lose, 3-2. He said that on Thursday.”

Would you rather have your drug abusing baseball players look like this…

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or this..

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Personally I’ll take the Roids of the late 90’s over the Crack of the 80’s.

Who won the AL MVP of 1992, post-coke pre-roids? A fucking closer – Dennis Eckersley. Oh the excitement!

NL MVP that year?

This guy:

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2nd Place in ’92? None other than Terry “Porkchops” Pendleton!

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I’ll take Sosa and McGwire going for 61 homers on the juice anyday over Porkchops Pendleton.

And lastly…

In honor of Rod Beck and his Fu Manchu passing away… here are some of baseball’s finest staches…

beck.jpgRod Beck – Fu Manchu

fingers1.jpg Rollie Fingers – Handlebar Stache

fasano_1727.jpg Sal Fasano – Prison Bitch Stache

fasano_yanks_1728.jpg Sal Fasano – Released on Parole Stache

boggs_1726.jpg Wade Boggs – “If I grow this stache thick enough, I can use it for hair plugs later in life” Stache…..

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Bill Cowher and Freddie Mercury – The “Openly Gay” Stache

….. and the all-time best stache is….

valentine_disguise_mets.jpg Bobby Valentine – “The umps will never recognize this disguise” Stache.

— Charlie Hustle

Posted in Cincinnati Reds, MLB, NFL | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Bryant Reiterates Trade Demands, Iverson Reiterates Absurdity Of Practice

Posted by Matt on June 18, 2007

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Being a father is, at times, a thankless job and is the reasoning behind the holiday Father’s Day (that and Hallmark’s wallet, but that is neither here nor there).  Well apparently Los Angeles Laker Kobe Bryant could not handle everybody else getting all of the attention yesterday as he pulled a Curt Schilling maneuver and went on his website and made, well, a statement he’s already made:

“The more I thought about the future, the more I became convinced that the Lakers and me just have two different visions for the future.”

First off, he must be like Dick Vitale and Andy Katz over at ESPN.com and doesn’t have an editor because I believe the proper English is “the Lakers and I,” not “me.” 

Secondly, Kobe: just shut up.  I mean honestly, WE KNOW YOU WANT TO BE TRADED.  You woke up this morning to tell us things haven’t changed.  Well I woke up this morning and still had to take a shit after my morning coffee; the more things change, the more they stay the same.  Take your lumps like the rest of us and wherever you end up come next season, come to work everyday and do what you’re supposed to do, it isn’t that hard.  I realize he has a blog and I don’t have to read it, but I also feel he should bring something new to the table and not just say what he’s already said.

…with all of this free time that he has on his hands, Bryant and Schilling ought to just become ‘Pen Pals’ if Kobe enjoy’s writing poorly written redundancy so much.  But I digress…

Anyways, without further ado, what you’re all really reading this article for, the clip we’ve all been waiting on:

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