Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Jason Whitlock Hating On Shaq - Stepien Rules

Jason Whitlock called Shaq a 40 year old groupie with breast implants...Whitlock Hates on Shaq

Friday, June 26, 2009

Stepien Rules - A Cavaliers Blog

Check out Stepien Rules - A Cavaliers Blog - for the best in Cavaliers coverage and banter. Go to StepienRules today!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

A.L. Cassoni presents....Money Talks, Stallworth Walks

I really don't even know how to start this article so I'm just going to flat out say it. 1 frickin month? Excuse me, not even a month, 24 days. More importantly, the victim's family is happy with the punishment (or lack there of) to Donte. Who said money can't buy you everything? Drunk Stallworth never said that. It bought him another life. Seriously, money bought him another life. Sad but true. It also bought the Reyes', the victim's family, another life. This guy rips off an all night bender, decides to hit up a late night spot (or make that the middle of rush hour spot if you will at 7 am) and hits and kills a guy. Not only is he going to serve less then a month in jail, but he is going to play ball for the Browns this year. Hell, I don't even want him. Get rid of him. What did he have last year, 200yards receiving and 1 touchdown? Let these rookies prove themselves. Goodell has one chance to salvage this thing and give him a big suspension, but who knows if that will happen. Apparently dogs are more important in civilization now then people since Vick got a couple years for his thing, and Stallworth gets just over 3 weeks. I really don't get people saying Vick's thing was premeditated and Stallworth's was not. Who cares? Stallworth ended a human being's life, and more importantly, he was drunk when doing it. I was talking to a guy at my office about this, and he goes, "Well, I heard Stallworth has his license taken away from him for the rest of his life, so that should count for something." Stallworth should be thrilled about that. The guy has enough money to buy a limo with a driver, and have him take him around whenever and wherever he wants while he sits in the back and sips on a cold one. Many new stations reported that if this were a regular dude with average income, he would probably have to serve 15-20 years in jail. So I guess ACDC put it best... "Come on Come on, lovin' for the money. Come on come on, listen to the money talk." Say hello to Art Modell in hell Donte...

Monday, June 15, 2009

More on the Shaq to Cleveland Rumors

For more on the Shaq to Cleveland rumors, read what I had to say about in my latest post on Midwest Sports Fans.

The Link is as follows: How Real Are the Shaq to Cleveland Rumors?

A.L. Casoni presents- Too much Bubbly ... A View from the Burgh

Like many Clevelandlers, I really don't understand icing and high sticking. I don't get it when you are sometimes allowed to catch the puck in mid air and sometimes you can't. None of that really mattered this past Friday night though. As I was sitting at a bar in downtown Pittsburgh Friday night, there were tons of Penguins fans and Red Wings fan around. As the clock struck 0:00 in game 7, I closed my eyes because I knew it was coming. The roar of another championship. The sound of drunk and sober people (mostly drunk) celebrating another one. The noises of a self proclaimed city known as, "City of Champions". It made me sick. I have lived in this city since April of 2005. Pittsburgh has brought home 3 World Championships in that span. 3 of them, are you serious? Out of a total of 13 possible championships that they could have won during that time, they have won over 20% of them. That stat even includes the God-forsaken Pirates who haven't had a winning record since the Reagan administration. What made me even more angry was some of the Penguins fans at the watering hole saying, "Finally the Penguins won one." It took me everything I had not to turn around and say something to them. Are they that spoiled? The stupid Penguins won the Cup in 1992. Sorry that winning a title every 17 years is not good enough for you. The Indians are somewhat close, maybe. The Cavs are even closer. The Browns are, well, the Browns are better then the Lions, at least last year. Yet Cleveland fans hear about our "championship drought" more in the media then from their peers. We all know how long its been, yet we still don't bitch about it. Cleveland has earned the right to say "Finally" when we win a championship, not these ridiculous people.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

A Shaq In The Hand's More Than 2 In the Bosh

Plastered on ESPNEWS rolling ticker this morning is the sentence: "Shaquille O'Neal to Cavaliers trade talks heating up."

ESPN's Chris Brossard reported this morning on Sportscenter that the trade deadline talks that spurned rumors of Shaq teaming up with LeBron earlier this season never actually died, and are currently gaining new momentum. While he noted that the deal is not imminent, from all indications former teammates Steve Kerr (Suns GM) and Danny Ferry are certainly talking about the possibilities of it.

Waiting For Next Year while supporting the possible move, posted on this subject this morning saying in part: "...the trade would essentially tie up the Cavs roster for the year and hinder their ability to make any sort of trade during the season (like say...Chris Bosh). This would most likely be the final product we go to war with next postseason..."

Details of the trade involve the Cavaliers moving Ben Wallace and Sasha Pavlovic to make way for the Big Fella.

While it is certainly true, that trading for Shaq and his $20 mil price tag would prevent other possible moves as the offseason and season move forward - specifically the aforementioned Bosh - that really shouldn't matter at this point. You can argue that the Cavaliers are not 'desperate' to improve their roster at this point, but there is no denying the fact that the sense of urgency is at an all-time high.

If you want to argue that Bosh is a better move than Shaq, I'll give you that. But how real is it? I don't see how the Cavaliers could wait on an opportunity like that (Bosh) presenting itself, when it may never come. If this Shaq deal, or a variation of it, presents itself, there is no way that Cleveland cannot make that move. Shaq makes you better right now, and there is no more time to wait on that. It's all in time for Cleveland, and I'll take my chances on the 37-old Shaq.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Fire Mike Brown?

Sam Amico caused a stir recently indicating that Mike Brown's job is in jeopardy. Whether that's true or not remains to be seen, but let's talk about that for a second.

Here is the only way I would fire Mike Brown: If LeBron James wants him fired. Right or wrong, if LeBron wants him fired, fire him.

But lets assume for a second that LeBron isn't leading this campaign. Can you really fire this guy?

Mike Brown won 66 games during the regular season. He won Coach of the Year, and then went into the playoffs and won 8 out of his first 8. 74-16 going into the Orlando series.

With that being the case, you are saying that he should be fired due to his performance during the Orlando series. Okay, so what went wrong there? Defensive match-ups, and offensive performance.


Hedo Turkulu: The Cavaliers best option on Hedo Turkulu was Delonte West. That being said, Mike Brown's best play on the 6'10" Turkulu was a 6'3" combo guard. No matter how gritty West might be, that's not good. And its not Mike Brown's, nor West's fault, that this was his best option here.

Rashard Lewis: What would you have liked Brown to do there. Cover him himself? Wally? Sasha? C'mon. Both guys would have been dominated inside. Or maybe he should have played his other 6'9" athletic big man...well that guys not on the roster. Should Ben Wallace have been covering him on that last second shot? No way, that was a bad move, but Lewis made plenty of other baskets besides that one. And truth be told, Anderson had a chance against Lewis inside, but when Rashard stepped outside it was over.

Rafer Alston: They left him open by design, and he hit shots. Should LeBron have been covering him? In hindsight no, but it was a decent idea. If Alston missed shots, you leave your biggest, best athlete to help all over the court on all the other mismatches, which were at the other four positions - all over the floor.

Courtney Lee / Mikael Petrus: Mo Williams is an average defender at best, and stood no shot against either player. Who should they have played instead? Daniel Gibson?

Dwight Howard: Z? Ummm...

Offensive Strategy:

The famous knock on Brown. During the regular season people said that Brown made dramatic strides on the offensive end of the floor as a Coach. I don't think so. He just had the luxury of having a point guard who could distribute and hit open shots - Mo Williams - and a combo guard that did the same in West. What happened then you ask? Well Mo Williams couldn't kick it into Lake Erie for one, and when your second best option doesn't show up, your kind of in a jam offensively.

The reports that are surfacing indicate that Dan Gilbert wants to see Brown replaced, and Danny Ferry disagrees. While I don't buy that, let's ask why Ferry wouldn't want to see Mike take the fall for this? Well, because the Cavaliers don't have enough talent. And before you say then why did they win 66 games then, I will tell you its because the Cavaliers played hard every night of an NBA regular season where teams take nights off regularly. As a result, they won more games than their talent should have dictated. They got into the playoffs, where every team plays hard, and talent won out.

Did Mike Brown Coach a perfect series? No. In addition to the Ben Wallace on Rashard Lewis basket at the buzzer, I blame Brown for not getting the ball to LeBron James more at the free throw line with a live dribble like they did in Game 5. They didn't do that in Game 6, and it cost the Cavaliers. But if your fire Mike Brown now, your acting irrationally as an organization. Your acting like, well, that team in Berea...and I think the Cavaliers are better than that.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Names Surfacing In Cavalier Rumors

Micheal Reghi mentioned (3) names as re-curring rumors as possible Cavalier offseason moves on air today, and while all three probably make the Cavaliers better, its hard to say that any put them over the top. I've listed them below though, and you can decide for yourself.

Jason Kidd - This was the move LeBron wanted a few years ago, and he was p.o'd when it didn't happen if you recall (Cavs made deal for Wallace, Szerbiak, Joe Smith, and Delonte at deadline instead - Kidd went to Dallas). You might make this move if for no other reason but to appease the King, but does Kidd make you better? A little better I guess. He adds size and consistencey to the Cavaliers back court, two things noticeably lacking against Orlando. Leadership? Sure he does. But how much does he have left in the tank at 37? That remains to be seen.

Charlie Villanueava - He would probably be the best offensive big man the Cavaliers have. Actually there is no probably involved there, he certainly would be. But is that saying much? Not really. The thing with him is if you can get him for (3) years, and reasonable dollars I say why not. But chances are you won't. I think he is going to be asking for (5) years, double digit millions, and do you pay that to a guy who averaged 26 minutes a game this season, and will be playing on his (4th) team in (5) years? Sounds a little like a guy with a hair patch growing out the back of his head that used to wear number 90 if you ask me.

Rasheed Wallace - Okay, he makes you better too - if healthy - but I initially say no. He is 34, played awful this past season, and is most likely going to disrupt any locker room that he is in at some point. Does he bring an edge the Cavaliers at time seem to lack? Yep. Additionally, he could step outside if healthy, and knock down the perimeter shot, and he would have matched up well against Rashard Lewis this past series. But I don't know. Health and dollars are huge factors here. The downside is huge, and is the upside at this point in his career really that high?

Lets just hope Ben Wallace retires, and go from there.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Aldrige Are You Serious, Call Byner?

I respect David Aldridge as an NBA Analyst. ESPN made a bad move replacing him with Screamin A. Smith, and I think that goes without saying at this point. However, in his recent article where he says that LeBron should call Earnest Byner to learn about sportsmanship? C'mon. Earnest Byner should call LeBron to learn how to not fold under pressure.

An excerpt from Aldrige's NBA.com Article is below:

Byner went left, looking like he'd score for sure. And then, he was hit from the side by a Broncos' defensive back, Jeremiah Castille. Byner fumbled. The Broncos recovered. Denver won. Cleveland lost. Again.

If anyone -- anyone -- had the right not to talk after losing such a game, in such a manner, after having been so heroic on the field, after having his heart broken in front of 75,933 fans at Mile High Stadium and millions more watching at home, it was Byner.

But Byner spoke. Did he ever.

"I was going for the touchdown, obviously, and the ball came out," Byner said. "So what can I say?...I tried to split two guys and the ball just popped out."

Time and time again, he answered the same question, over and over again: what happened? He answered it at his locker for more than half an hour, still in uniform, and if he raised his voice or was curt or profane to anyone, I am not aware of it, and neither are the dozens of reporters and camera people who were there. It remains the single most courageous, classy thing I have ever seen an athlete do. Ever. It should be required reading and/or viewing for anyone who plays any sport on how to handle defeat.

That's why you should call him, LeBron. He knows.

David, you might have be wowed by this at the time, but the whole event made Cleveland sick. And while everybody in Cleveland is well aware of the fact that Byner fumbled away a ticket to the Super Bowl, nobody remembers - or cares - that he talked to the media after he did so. And nobody would have even noticed - or cared - that LeBron didn't shake hands after the game, or talk to the media, if guys like you weren't making it a major issue. Move on. Time to cover the Orlando Magic and LA Lakers. And reminding us about Byner? Thanks for nothing.

Monday, June 1, 2009

So LeBron Didn't Shake Hands, Huh?

LeBron was supposed to shake Dwight Howard's hand huh? Because why? Because Dwight Howard is some great sportsman that deserves the respect of a humbled half court handshake from the King after his team bounced LeBron from the playoffs? The same great sportsman that threw powder up in an ESPN halftime interview during the Lakers - Nuggets game, mocking LeBron? In the words of Ozzie Guillen, 'shh please.'

I for one am glad that LeBron James was pissed off about the loss. I am glad that LeBron was so mad about losing that he didn't want to shake anybody's hand, give anybody dap, give anybody hugs, wish anybody good luck in the next round, and exchange pleasantries on national television, while I sat at the Harry Buffalo in Cleveland debating whether or not I should throw my chair through the window of the Corvette that was parked right outside in front of me. Props to my brother for telling me that would only make it worse.

My brother was right, that would have made it worse. And LeBron would have made it worse too had he shown Howard love. He sent him an email. Get over it.