Wednesday, March 08, 2006

greatest team i've ever seen

the greatest team that i've ever seen are the bulls from chicago.
volume 1995-96, made from the best grape, such like the most delicious
french wines.
they've stood highly, highly above the rest.
the team that have established the standard for true greatness.
in that season they had a record 72-10, the best in the history (the
whole season i allege that the 2005-06 pistons can't reach it after
their last 82th game. they have a weak bench to it. boys, you were
totally wrong).
they were the first in offense rating (105.2) and the third in defense
the team of famous coaches phil jackson and tex winter.
the leader was michael jordan (his stats: 30.4 ppg (1st in the league),
2.6 spg (3rd)).
he was a better long-range shooter (42.7%) than he'd previously been.
also a better turnaround jump shooter from the low post.
if he had to pick his spots to play all-out defense, he always picked
the right spots.
at age 33, he was still mr. wonderful.
scottie pippen (19.4 ppg) still insisted on taking too many ill-advised
shots, but he and m.j. were as comfortable in the triangle offense as
i'm in the watching of nba games.
dennis rodman (5.5 ppg, 14.9 rpg (1st)) solved the mysteries of the
triangle offense in a matter of weeks.
he was smart and quick (vertically and horizontally).
he willingly sacrificed his body, ran the court and played madcap
toni kukoc (13.1 ppg) was defenseless, but, at 6-foot-10, handled the
ball like a guard and could create shots against almost anybody.
if he also demonstrated sticky fingers, he was a dependable scorer
whenever a game was on the line.
ron harper (7.4 ppg) was a cagey veteran.
although he couldn't score points by the dozen as he once did, he saved
his shots for clutch situations.
his defense was remarkable as was his court awareness.
harper rarely made foolish moves.
luc longley (9.1 ppg) was a gifted passer and was therefore a
considerable upgrade over bill cartwright.
luc had the bulk (7-2, 320) to clog the middle and to bang with the
other behemoths.
but it was his ability to read defenses and make precise passes that
helped make the triangle difficult to defend.
teammates were amazed whenever steve kerr missed an open shot (8.4 ppg, .515 3fg% (2nd)).
a gutsy player whose decision-making ability was impeccable.
bill wennington (5.3 ppg) was a seven-footer who could hit midr-range
jumpers all day long.
jud buechler (3.8 ppg) was another 3-point specialist (44.4%) who could
sit on the bench for long stretches and still hit his mark.
the bulls overwhelmed the rest of the league with their precision
offense, their explosive scoring, their suffocating defense - and with
his airness performing routine miracles.
the true dream team.
i know one guy who lives in chicago, he sends me an e-mail
his name's todd, aged 25.
he's an avid basketball fan, in fact, since the start of 90's he
omitted zero chicago's home games.
the first time i saw him (his letters on the screen) was then when he
chatted at some bulls web forum.
i don't go to write about his favorite player.
it's clear for everyone.
but it's interesting that he says: *yep!
my player from that era is m.j., but don't remeber scottie!
and dennis r., he could rebound every ball, i say EVERY.
whether it was out-of-bounds, in the air, above the rim, on the floor,
even in the stands and something's telling me: wow, he can reb the
ball ABOVE the shot clock!*
a little bit from our first chatting online:
fics: *what's the weather like in chicago?*
todd: *well, chicago's called 'the windy city' and it really can be
f: *what are the people like?*
t: *they're very interesting.
you meet people from all over the world.*
f: *what are the buildings like?*
t: *a lot of them are very, very tall.
the sears tower is 110 storeys high.*
f: *what are the restaurants like?*
t: *they're very good.
you can find food from every country in the world.*
f: *what's the night-life like?*
t: *oh, it's wonderful.
there's lots to do in chicago.*
f: *which bulls' moment from all that you've seen is your no. 1?*
t: *that's relatively easy.
1998 finals, game 6, against the jazzmen.
trailing utah 86-83 with 41.9 seconds left, we were in danger of facing
a game 7 on the road with scottie severely limited by back pain.
then michael delivered.
first, mj hit a driving layup to cut the lead to one.
then he stripped karl malone from behind in the post, and calmly
dribbled upcourt.
after a stutter-step and a crossover dribble, jordan launched a
championship-winning 20-foot jumper over a fallen bryon russell.
45 points, 6 finals mvps, 6 championships, chicago in the true
yeah, yeah, yeah.*
it was, quite simply, the greatest clutch sequence in basketball
p.s.: here is my favorite referee story:
some seasons back, the sixers were playing in new jersey and the game
was on the line.
earl strom and dick bavetta were the senior refs and strom made a
last-second call that went against the nets and won the game for
but bavetta came running and jumping to the scorer's table from his
spot along the time-line, saying, *no! no! i got a push off against
strom said to bavetta, *are you overruling my call?*
*i got pushing off right here!* bavetta insisted and the nets wound up
winning the game.
later, the players were walking into their locker rooms when the door
to the referees' locker room came flying open and bavetta staggered
his shirt was torn, there was a big knot over his eye and he was
desperately running and looking for a place to hide.
then strom stepped out into the runway and shouted after bavetta,
*you'll take another one of my (bleeping) calls again, right, you
p.s.2: the combination of larry brown and isiah thomas together means
anything is possible over the next 10 days. (- mike kahn).
p.s.3: iverson SHOULD be on u.s. preliminary roster!
he's the true warrior and really deserves it.

Written by Foreigner in CS - Mar 7 2006 5:27PM

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