DATELINE: Fall in Love?
The NBA and even Coach Brad Stevens of the Celtics are horrified. Tacko Fall, who has played eleven garbage time minutes, is #6 in All-Star Voting, just barely behind his teammate, the talented and star-like Jayson Tatum.
Fall has risen quickly because he is 7’ 6” tall and has sparked delirium whenever he steps out in public.
When you lead the Boston Pops on its holiday musical concert for Christmas, you are heading in the direction of taking the place of Gronk in the hearts of Boston sports fans.
Let’s face it: Gronk has left a void in the sports world with his retirement.
There is a vacancy for sure. But, we were not counting on Tacko is taking the entire nation by storm.
There are unhappy NBA folks because the popular vote is like voting for President of the United States. There is an electoral college to counterbalance the inane and insane fan support for players.
There goes the fan respect of the NBA who charges people large prices for attending a game, but allows people to vote endlessly and often for their favorite players. So, someone has uncovered the flaw in the system.
Now embarrassed by their mal-constructed voting for all-stars, there is is not much they can do with public opinion saying they want Tacko at the All-Star game to see a human freak in the flesh.
Heaven help us if Tacko starts spiking the basketball. He simply reaches up to swat away any ball heading for a swish.
DATELINE: Young Guns
The Boston Celtics have a problem: it is a nickname to be applied to their young tandem 30-points each in a game stars. We haven’t felt a giddy issue in the Celtic world since we heard Larry Bird isn’t walking through that door.
The Celtics are no longer looking to trade one or both: you can tell that from the new public relations spots in Boston that urge fans to vote them as teammates to the All-Star squad.
The big problem is their nickname: for past vainglorious stars like Bird and McHale or Russell and Heinsohn, nicknames were superfluous. But social media and youth must be served. Young fans want to label their new generation of superstars for the upcoming decade.
Originally Jalen Brown wanted to call themselves 7-11. Open all night, or something, but Jayson immediately changed his number from 11 to 0. Such are the results of testosterone and competition.
Jayson once said he would be Brown’s trainer for free if he no longer had an NBA career. His pay: a room in Jalen’s big house, which appalled Jalen.
Scary Terry Rozier thought they were simply two annoying youngsters.
They are not your average Batman and Robin.
To their teammates, they are simply JT and JB. And, they are a new version of Bird and McHale, who also never had nicknames, and also had a rather contentious intra-team rivalry: their mutual glue was Danny Ainge, which may be the same factor today.
When McHale scored 50 points one night, Bird said in laconic fashion, “It’s not enough,” and promptly went out and scored more points a week later, leaving McHale with a record setting for one week.
Some contend they have never seen Jayson pass the ball to Jalen. Perhaps that’s strictly a metaphor. They are two of the most unassuming, quiet, soft-spoken types you would ever meet. They are not flashy or overwhelming in any public way.
It’s difficult to come up with resonating naicknames for two who speak softly and carryi big balls.
We don’t like Triple Double 0-7, and we don’t like Green Jays.
They seem to accept Kid ‘n Play as something workable. They are too accommodating. We still don’t know who’s the kid sidekick.
DATELINE: Dangers of Dance Fallout?
If you don’t know the fancy moves of Gronk by now, you need a lesson in Dancing with the Stars.
In one of his latest publicity hound antics, Gronk chose to cheer with the Los Angeles Lakers girls. Yes, He prefers gold to Green, you Celtic fans.
You might recall seeing Gronk at games watching the likes of Kevin Garnett and Rondo, but that’s ancient history. He has grown into a first-rate Laker girl.
Those cheers you hear are not from the Bronx, but from the South Boston where True Believers think the Earth is flat and Gronk will return to the Patriots.
If Gronk wants to make a comeback, it will be in movies. He expects his latest film with Mel Gibson will be out before you can say Super Bowl hype.
Though Gronk seems a movie mogul’s dreamboat, he seems more to prefer spending time on Madison Ave. Quicker paychecks, fewer lines to remember, and more fans at the social media.
Like Marlon Brando, Gronk requires one take only and someone to whisper his lines in his ear. That’s why he prefers scenes where guns are blazing.
Every few weeks Gronk tells us that he has a big announcement, but it turns out to be a new product endorsement.
We are on record to wish Gronk stays healthy, avoids concussions, and has fun with fans and media. He remains a loveable lug, and we forgive him for exposing himself needlessly to Los Angeles TV producers who attend Laker games.
If you don’t realize that he admires Jack Nicholson and wants a part in his latest movie, you may not know that Jack—like Gronk—is permanently retired
DATELINE: Tarnished Hero with Feats of Clay
Chump or Champ with Cousy?
On a night when when usually are talking about Ancient Aliens, we find ourselves facing a true abduction crisis and missing time. It seems that Boston Celtics legend, Bob Cousy, has been taken prisoner to the White House, turned back the clock to the years before the Civil Rights movement, and now he has become the voice of white racist America in the Oval Office.
Yes, Bob Cousy who reconciled whatever differences he had with fellow NBA legend Bill Russell has rekindled the fires.
He received a pat on the back from the President he most admires apparently in his lifetime. What happened to the Celtic legend?
Well, his Jesuit roots of Holy Cross conservatism emerged. Perhaps you can write him off as the aging hero outliving his standards of integrity. Growing old does not always mean you die of Alzheimer’s. Sometimes you simply become the epitome of everything you lived through and fought against.
Time makes us all doddering fools and blithering idiots. You can outlive your usefulness and your own personal values. It’s called betrayal by younger idealists, but it is far more powerful than that.
Cousy once teamed with Tommy Heinsohn on the parquet floor of the Boston Garden, and they were both brilliant and talented men beyond the game that made them famous. One season in retirement years they were even teamed up as fellow commentators for a season of Celtics games on TV. It was extraordinary to behold.
When they grew furious with each other, now and then, they simply called each other, “Thomas,” and “Robert.”
We wonder if Tom has started calling his friend of lifelong years, “Robert.” We know that William Russell may be doing so, if he is even speaking to his one-time nemesis in the locker room. Time wounds all heels and we have an Achilles heel ripped apart by the President Medal of Freedom.
Perhaps Couz showed his mettle by doing and saying whatever needed to receive his Medal.
He stood next to a man who wants to give himself the Congressional Medal of Honor. Heaven help our old heroes from their blithering end of days.
DATELINE: No Free Lunch Anywhere?
This week we heard a comment that we stopped writing about sports because of “free agency.” Well, no, not exactly, though it is an appalling condition in society in general.
You have to understand that lack of loyalty and love of money is rampant across America, not just in basketball where Avery Bradley has signed up to re-join Rajon Rondo, and Kyrie Irving left the place he swore he would stay in front of a million fans.
We have seen “free agency” at work everywhere. If there had been DNA tests thirty years ago, we would have exercised free agency and gone to Harvard University to work as a professor: we have learned we are a descendant of Miles Standish and Massasoit (for whom Massachusetts was named). If we knew we had more Native American in us than Elizabeth Warren, we might even be running for President today.
We have seen free agency in the legal profession. The same lawyers who work for Donald Trump also work for Jeffrey Epstein. You go from billionaire to billionaire. Is it more money? Better opportunity? More challenges? It is not loyalty to a brand.
You might switch banks for better interest rates, or switch social media to be with different influencers.
In recent years we have experienced our primary care doctor whom we loved, move to the Sun Belt, where she said in her letter of departure to patients, there were “more opportunities.” To what? Cure cancer? Lower blood pressure? Deal with fewer insurance forms?
This year our dentist, who had a beautiful office and seemed happy, left for “more opportunities.” That likely means “more cavities to fill,” or “fewer teeth to pull,” or just where weather allows for fewer snow days.
Free agency is everywhere in society today, and it simply means people can go where they want, for whatever dumb reason strikes their limited fancy. We have an endemic pandemic epidemic of movers and shakers in sports, law, medicine, education, and politics.
Heaven help our society. We need a new prayer, and it must be time to move on from the Lord’s Prayer. Hell, no, I won’t go.
DATELINE: Go Away, NBA!
A few years ago we stopped writing our satiric, light-hearted blogs about sports in the NBA, NFL, and MLB.
If you want to know why, take a close look at the antics of the Los Angeles Lakers and the NBA this weekend. A brawl of unimaginable hatreds broke out.
Former Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo was at the epicenter if the blowup. However, we were not surprised that Rondo’s deep-rooted emotional problems have not abated with age or change of venue. We wrote three books on him while he played in Boston. He became increasingly dark, like a Darth Vader figure. He wasn’t funny or amusing by the end of the Boston tenure.
We were more appalled by the vocabulary and attitude of the official NBA investigation to this latest “spitting” on another player incident. The NBA has millions of dollars invested in presenting the players as cute, all-American boys who have made good.
The truth is far more disturbing. You have pampered, spoiled, egomaniacs with emotional problems, ghetto backgrounds, and gang-related ties. The NBA does not want to talk about that.
There is now a media cottage industry geared to protect these guilty parties from themselves. The cash cows are all around the sport—products, foods, endorsements, personality cults, and it is all a fraud perpetrated on the gullible public for their entertainment—and to sell the Brooklyn Bridge to unsuspecting fans amid fixes.
Are we surprised a brawl broke out based on ten-year old feuds and jealousies? Are we amused by the outmoded macho attitudes of these testosterone-drenched idiots?
The answer is simply we don’t write about them anymore, and that should be our final response to those who ask why we don’t present those funny, double-entendre drenched blogs nowadays.
DATELINE: ‘Former Celtic’ is Always a Dirty Term
Two of our favorite Celtics characters were sent packing to other teams some time ago. However, that does not mean they are not still Celtics.
Case in point, Rajon Rondo and Isaiah Thomas. They bleed Green.
Both men were lively point guards, fun to watch and delightful off-beat souls. Rondo had a temperament that helped win a banner over seven years. Thomas never won a banner but played like a wounded warrior through dark days and dark events in his personal life.
This weekend was supposed to be a video tribute to Thomas’s few years in Boston, but it was not meant to be.
It was Paul Pierce’s retirement ceremony. His 34 went to the rafters, and it was not a moment to be shared. The video tribute to Isaiah Thomas (then of the Cavaliers) was postponed indefinitely.
Before it happened, Rondo said Isaiah didn’t deserve a tribute because he never won a championship. Rondo insisted he knew Boston better than Thomas. That might’ve meant an interesting game, watching Rondo sitting right near the Cavaliers bench waiting for a turn to honor Paul Pierce.
Oh yes, though he plays for the Chicago Bulls, Rondo returned to Boston for Pierce’s retirement. That in itself was marvelous. He joined his former coach Doc Rivers and his best friend Kevin Garnett. Once a Celtic, always the Celtic.
Abruptly traded to the Lakers, Isaiah Thomas faced Rondo within the week as opposing players Laker versus Bull.
If you were surprised by the next part, you never watched a Celtics game. The two former Celtics went at each other in the first quarter several times, nasty words and physical pushes nearly turning into a brawl. They both were ejected from the game.
Thomas insisted that Rondo was giving him a hard time for the tribute video that never happened and likely accused him of being a fake Celtic.
A true Celtic comes back to the Boston TD Garden even when he plays for another team for a ceremony because he has never shed the Celtic Green inside.
We love our former Celtics. They are never former.
DATELINE: Back Where He Belongs
We were giddy to see Rajon Rondo, even in an ugly Pelican uniform.
Now 31, but looking as young as ever, Rondo came back to Boston for one night and instantly put his stamp of controversy on the Celtics.
He told media members that former Celt Isaiah Thomas did not deserve a video tribute. After all, as Rondo pointed out, he was only on the team for three years and never won a championship. It’s those banners up above the parquet floor that matter.
When Rondo said, “This is the Boston Celtics,” to shoot down the notion that IT deserved not much more than nothing. You know that Rondo is still a Celtic to the core, no red uniform could hide that fact.
Rondo knows of what he speaks. He spent nine years in Boston, and the most recent championship banner came from his hard efforts with the most recent Big Three who are Hall of Fame bound.
You know Rondo loves Paul Pierce—and to honor the latest Cleveland Cavalier with a video would take away from Pierce’s truly great Celtic achievements.
Indeed, Pierce himself sent out word that he thought offering a video tribute to Cousin IT was done out of guilt for trading him so coldly.
If memory serves us, the Celtics also traded Pierce and Rondo for business and humanity.
Then, Rondo in his inimitable fashion went out on the floor and showed he still had that amazing passing ability, doling out assists. Some people might be infatuated with Anthony Uni-brow, wanting him in Boston, but for us, it was Rondo who was the marvel.
We miss Rondo still. We think he misses Boston.
DATELINE: Small Fry
Let’s face it: Little Isaiah Thomas is the biggest star to play for the shortest time in the harsh Boston sports club. Cousin ITT returned with the Cleveland Cavaliers for his post-vindictive revenge tour at the Boston Garden.
It was not LeBron James who impressed the delirious Boston fans, but a variety of former Celtics players who represented failure over the past decade to bring a banner to Boston. They were jettisoned by Celtics operations man, Danny Ainge, when they failed to raise banner-time.
So after vitriol and ugly words, Isaiah returned to Boston. Not only was there a Isaiah Thomas wearing his Harvard red uniform, now a Cavalier Cleveland lackey, we saw Jay Crowder whose defense once won plaudits from the fans for his defensive prowess.
We also saw Jeff Green, who’s coming back from severe injury, as life-threatening as anything Isiah faced with broken jaw, missing teeth, and ripped hip from socket.
Now, on the notable parquet floor, all the harsh words had melted away. Time heals all wounds as well as wounds all heels. There was even a private reconciliation for Danny Ainge.
Little cousin ITT recognized how much he appreciated the Boston fans and the opportunities he had in Boston’s sports bastion to become a star, with a chance to play with LeBron for a championship.
Former Celtic assistant coach Ty Lue now runs the Cavaliers. And present for the game were the new Patriot diminutive star Dion Lewis, the former Patriot diminutive star Troy Brown, and the diminutive new manager of the Red Sox, Alex Cora.
Tiny Alice was missing in the big celebration of the return of tiny Isaiah Thomas and the miniature Boston corps of would-be stars.
Well, if these shenanigans strike you as a kind of hypocrisy, or worse, a public relations manipulation, you are welcome to join Boston sports in the 21st-century.
The stars of the game were of a new world order: Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, and Cousin ITT’s protégé, Terry Rozier.
DATELINE: Sunny Tzu in Boston
In one of the great anticlimaxes of Patriot history, the Tom Brady team defeated the New York Jets in less than impressive fashion than your usual worthless score numbers.
If anyone enjoyed playing in one of the coldest games in Foxboro in a generation, they did not show it. The game was a job for players, and a task for fans who stayed away because it was New Year’s Eve and about ten degrees on the field.
Brady was the smartest man on the field, wearing a Navy Seal scuba outfit under his uniform, while some dumb-bells went out shirtless in pre-game to show their manhood is a match for pneumonia.
It didn’t matter, as the Patriots would win the home field advantage, despite Gronk’s notable absence during the game. He never caught a pass and made a few blocks—and seemed gone to the sidelines for nearly all the second half.
If Gronk made any impression during the game, it was his participation in a most intriguing commercial ad for Nike. The highlight of the game was the one-minute spot that brought together three key sports personalities in Boston sports culture: Jayson Tatum, Kyrie Irving, and Gronk.
It certainly explained Gronk’s presence courtside at a Celtics game this week. The three stars shared the stage for a commercial debut during the Patriots’ game.
Gronk read Sun Tzu, the great philosopher of warfare, and Irving indicated his philosophical bent was more on a cartoon level.
Jayson Tatum was around to look pretty.
Ah, Boston culture. Irving misidentified some musical group behind him as the “Boston Philharmonic,” meaning the Pops or Boston Symphony wouldn’t participate.
It put a shoddy, last regular season game into perspective: it’s time for a New Year, and a new chapter.
DATELINE: Jaylen’s Wear Daily Reports
Jaylen Brown’s eyes don’t have it. Goggles don’t make his brown eyes blue. Goggles have given him a headache and a black eye in the fashion world.
Brown’s fashionplate goggles have bitten the dust in Jaylen’s locker. We are back to contact lenses, limited to two to three hours per day. Jaylen has decided those hours are game time.
Apparently the intellectual look is not the best way to see eye to eye with the basketball. The Brown Green Lantern has tried three options now, and finds he prefers contact lenses, no matter how encrusted his eyelids may become after inflammation.
We first recommended cleaning the lenses regularly, or perhaps wearing a new, fresh pair of eyeballs. That can only occur after the infection heals.
Jaylen, a 21 year old smarty pants, is worried about the windows to his soul. If you look at those those big brown panes, you may see a young man in pains.
At first he claimed the goggles were constrictive, or perhaps he simply was intolerant about giving them a chance. Then he had a second pair made, that were too tight around his egghead. Loose straps mean more traps.
He ripped off the goggles and played with bad eyesight for most of his worst game of the season. It seems he could not see much—his vision being a big blur without corrective lenses.
Yes, we recommend playing with corrected vision, Jaylen. He barely could see the hoop the other day when he threw out all lens assistance.
Old habits die hard, and contact lenses are here to stay. If Jaylen cannot accept goggles, we won’t judge him too harshly. Even the Celtics Yoda, Tommy Heinsohn, said that Jaylen Brown played better without goggles.
The Green Lantern of Brown has bats in his belfry and a pointed noggin when it comes to the notions counter of goggles-to-wear. He has batted his big beautiful eyes once too often.
Fashion and taste are all important in basketball, if you ask the young man who likes to wear short shorts against the grain of fellow players. Jaylen has so far resisted the urge to ask the advice of Jayson Tatum, his nemesis.
DATELINE: Twilight Zone Meets Jaws
With an ice storm on the horizon in Boston, the two championship franchises, the Celtics and the Patriots, were also out of town and out of luck. Every great team has its up and downs.
After our ill-timed braggadocio, life gave us a cold slap in the face with ice pellets. Alas, it was too cold to make lemonade out of the fiasco that befell the Patriots and Celtics on Monday night.
We could not imagine these were the same teams that had been so impressive game after game. What on earth happened to the bright lights?
Miami and Chicago laid the expected victors a harsh dose of reality. No one is perfect, not even Bill Belichick or Brad Stevens.
If ever there was a night for Tom Brady to yell at Josh McDaniels this was it. If ever there was a night for Jaylen Brown to keep wearing his goggles, this was it.
Alas, Brown discarded his glasses and Tom Brady made nice with Josh.
When Jayson Tatum is unable to hit three-pointers and Tom Brady throws an interception and only has a handful of passing yards in the first half, you have crossed through the looking glass. In this case, it’s the mirror Tom Brady broke.
The Chicago Bulls are the worst team in the NBA, and the Miami Dolphins are the toughest opponents the Pats ever face in Miami. Brady has his worst record in 18 years against the Dolphins.
We have to admit the Patriots were without Gronk, who was suspended, and the Celts were without Kyrie Irving who needed some rest.
No matter where Boston fans turned, they were on the edge of the Outer Limits.
Both teams, known for their defensive finesse, showed it wasn’t their night. It was reminiscent of On the Waterfront, when Brando’s boxer complained his brother told him to lose, “It wasn’t my night!”
At half-time we were ready to become fair weather fans for our two teams.
Monday Night Football, Basketball, and Ancient Aliens
DATELINE: Boston’s Conundrum
Greens: Hornet & Lantern
For the better part of a decade, there has been no such creature as a head-to-head match-up of the Boston Celtics and the New England Patriots.
It was no contest. We could plead nolo contendre with gay abandon.
If the two franchises were playing in the same small timeframe, without question, the attention went directly to Belichick, Brady, and their imitation of 1950s-60s Celtics as a football franchise.
Perhaps in some future date the Patriots will have 17 championships and Bill Belichick and Red Auerbach will march, arm in arm, into New England mythology. You will see Tom Brady and Bill Russell matching ring for ring on their fingers.
However, this week in Boston, the conundrum rises anew: the Pats are playing on Monday night, and so are the newly rejuvenated Celtics. Normally, Patriots are sitting court-side at the Celtics game—but both teams are on the road and playing simultaneously.
Nineteen-year old shooter Jayson Tatum is leading the league in three-point shooting. We haven’t seen a 19-year old with this kind of dead eye since Billy the Kid shot up the New Mexico league in 1880.
Brady is twice as old as Tatum, but together they could be an epoch of victors lasting half a century. If Jayson Tatum plays until the mid-2040s, he may be retiring at the same age as Tom.
We are not sure whether we will be around for the accolades and retirement ceremony, but it is possible.
Hardly a man is now alive who saw Babe Ruth pitch for the Red Sox, but we are the recipient of modern medical miracles already.
So, whom will you watch on Monday night?
Fortunately, the new age of technology allows us to put the Patriots on our tablet and the Celtics on our smartphone—and leave our other attention to a new movie on UFOs on cable.
Life is grand nowadays. We are riding in the chariots of the gods.
DATELINE: Celtics Find Clark Kent in Green Lantern
Don the Goggles! He doesn’t need a cape. And you can no longer spit in his eye.
Jaylen Brown may have had an eye infection from his contact lenses this week. However, his solution is not just sterilized: it’s made of plexiglass.
Yes, Jaylen has found his personality. He will henceforth wear goggles. This gives him an edge as an all-star and Celtics legend.
The man who wouldn’t be photographed in glasses will now appear in wrap-around goggles. Brown insists he can see better than ever. In fact, the goggles give him “3-D vision,” in his own words.
Heavens, and we thought all of us had 3-D vision, born with at least one superhuman quality.
This new asset of Jaylen may not be confused with X-ray vision or infra-red vision, or other superhero attributes.
Whatever, Jaylen played like Superman in his new regalia. If Kyrie can wear a clear mask, then Jaylen does one better than superstars of yore in basketball.
Yes, Brown has channeled his inner Kareem Abdul Jabbar.
In his new personae as The Celtics Green Lantern, it would seem that Brown may look more like Sponge Bob than Kareem. He may have more ability to see than Madame Acardi facing Blithe Spirit.
Whether the goggles give him a true extra set of eyes remains to be seen.
Move over, Clark Kent. The intellectual Brown now appears to be smarter than Smart and flashier than Beyonce.
Will the bespectacled Brown take the permanent role of superhero with the brown eyes under glass?
Trump, Moore Chased by Frankenstein Monster