Sunday , Nov , 14 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

NBA Trash Talk: Volume I

Welcome and thank you for joining me on this momentous occasion – the first ever instalment of NBA Trash Talk: I’m Chuck and I’ll be your host each and every week, working with you to deal with the league’s big issues while breaking down the top plays and players of the preceding seven days.

<b>NBA Trash Talk</b>: </b><i>Volume I</i>“/><I>NBA Trash Talk</I> is an interactive affair, with a large portion of the column being dedicated to what you, the readers, think are the hot topics of the moment. I respond to all email (8charles@gmail.com) and other queries (scroll to the bottom of the page for the comment box) either through the column or with a personal response, so feel free to get at me with any concerns or questions you have.<BR><BR>Got beef? Think a player deserves some ink? Are there issues other writers simply aren’t dealing with? That’s what I’m here for. Each week I’ll be giving a thousand words to a user-suggested title. Simply comment in the box at the bottom of the page or email me with an idea for an article and the best one will become a full feature piece. Where else can you find that sort of personal service? Nowhere, that’s where. <BR><BR>As this is a <I>by the people, for the people</I> deal, it’s reliant on reader feedback. Since you’ve had no time yet to throw me your thoughts, this first edition will be shorter than usual. With your help we’ll really have this thing going next week. Normally this is where you’d find your article, but for this first week in its place I’m treating you to my plays of the season thus far, in chronological order. <BR><BR><B>Kobe swats Miller.</B> It may have been an ill-advised move that caused the turnover, but chasing a guy all the way down the floor and pinning his shot epitomises hustle. He might not be playing his best right now, but at least he’s setting an example with plays like this. <BR><BR><B>Stevie for the win(s).</B> There are lots of different ways to make friends in a new city, and Steve Francis found out that hitting a game-winner in your first outing is one of the best. Then, as if that weren’t enough, he did it again two nights later, making up for a sub par performance to that point. <BR><BR><B>Shaq over Varejão.</B> I’ll admit that I don’t know an awful lot about Anderson Varejão, but what I can tell you is this: he can’t be too bright to get underneath Shaq on a dunk. The Diesel went up strong and young Anderson somehow felt he’d have a chance at making the block. The next thing he knew, he was in the front row picking popcorn out of his Sideshow Bob-style hair. Let’s hope he learnt something. <BR><BR><B>K.G. pins.</B> It’s rare to see a player pin a shot to the backboard and gather the ball in one hand, but that’s exactly what Kevin Garnett did twice in one game. On the first play he came from the weak side and stole Carmelo’s shot right of the glass, getting even the Denver fans excited. The encore performance was a denial of Andre Miller on the breakaway, the second time he’s found himself all alone and been swatted this week. <BR><BR><B>D.A. beats the buzzer.</B> This is one you really have to have seen to appreciate. With a half-second on the shot clock, Armstrong jumps to receive a pass outside the arc, catches the rock and releases before hitting the floor, banking it in from some twenty-five feet. <BR><BR><B>Iggy swats.</B> Iguodala’s a player some feel is in the running for the Rookie of the Year award, but on this play it’s clear that he had no respect for a former winner of the accolade. Stoudemire caught sight of the hoop and lofted up a ten-footer, only to have it sent into the upper circle of the arena. Andre could have tapped the shot and collected it, but he instead decided to send it flying. We appreciate that. <BR><BR><B>Ginobili down the lane.</B> Playing the Lakers, the nimble guard threw in a jerky crossover, cut a path right through the middle of the key and hammered it down between two big men. Could we call that “going Olympic” now? <BR><BR><B>Ratliff rejects.</B> For some reason Chris Bosh decided that an off-balance fade-away dunk attempt over one of the league’s premiere shot-blockers would be a wise decision. Theo Ratliff disagreed. Rising up, he smothered Bosh’s effort with both hands, sending it back out to the three-point line. It was the basketball equivalent of assault. <BR><BR><B>AK47 throws it down.</B> Not content with swatting just about every player on Denver’s roster (five rejections that game, eight two nights earlier), Kirilenko squared up on the block, got a step on his man and caught Camby in jail. The dunk itself was relatively simple, but the sheer violence of it made it a thing of beauty. <BR><BR><B>Stevie down the lane.</B> Stevie makes a second appearance in the list with a vicious spike against Washington. Driving across the lane from right to left, he saw an opening, turned the corner and took off from outside the dotted line, finishing right at the rim. The throwdown was nice enough, but when you consider that he’s a true 6’1”, it’s all the more impressive. <BR><BR>That’s pretty much everything for this week, but bear in mind that the next instalment will be better, stronger, faster. Go ahead and contact me (one more time – 8charles@gmail.com or the comment box below) if you have any questions or comments or would like to suggest an article. As I said before, you will all receive a response in some form, either through here or via email. These are the games to look out for before we meet again: <BR><BR>• Miami @ Dallas tonight (Thursday) – Superman and The Flash versus Dirk and co. <BR>• Miami @ San Antonio on Friday – The dynamic duo take on Timmy, Tony and Manu. <BR>• Detroit @ Utah on Saturday – Trust me; this will be a good one. <BR>• Denver @ Sacramento on Sunday – Have you ever seen two desperately underachieving teams square off? It gets ugly. <BR>• Miami @ Minnesota on Tuesday – The Big Aristotle against The Big Ticket<BR>• Phoenix @ Dallas on Tuesday- Improved teams who love to run and score in abundance playing one another always makes for good viewing. <BR>• Minnesota @ Detroit on Wednesday – Two of the favourites to take the Larry O’Brien trophy this year lock horns at The Palace. <BR><BR>So, until next time, try to grab as much NBA action as you can. Take it easy now, <BR><BR>Chuck. <BR><BR></p>