Tuesday, February 16, 2010

"Fish Out of Water" - February '10 Edition

That's right, sports fans! They tried to keep us apart, but the return of 'The Fish' was nothing short of inevitable. Now, if I may, I'd like to put the whole ugly incident and resulting suspension behind us and move on to more important things. After all, so much has happened since I last posted that it's hard to figure out where to begin. No, I'm not talking about that sleazeball Tiger Woods; it's the WNBA offseason: Where Amazing Happens!

The first development worthy of mention is the triumphant advancement in WNBA player salaries for the 2010 season. Under the current CBA, the maximum salaries of the best players in the WNBA will for the first time in the history of the league be allowed to exceed $100,000! Phoenix Mercury guard Diana Taurasi declined to comment on the breakthrough when ETS Daily reached out to the 2009 MVP, but we can only assume she is ecstatic. To put this milestone in perspective, consider that Blake Griffin will receive only $5,000,000 this season for his presence in several preseason games for the Los Angeles Clippers. If elite female players like Taurasi can finally pull down salaries in excess of 2% of what draft-studs like Griffin are making, young women in America can take solace in knowing that, in the words of 2008 NBA Champion Kevin Garnett, "Anything is possible!" (In a related story, Garnett will earn $16.4 M this season).

Another big story this offseason has been the strategic finish of my New York Liberty (13-21) at the bottom of the final standings for the 2009 season. As any current Nets fan is well aware, the best way to build for the future is to lose as many games as possible to get in line for the upcoming draft lottery. As any current Knicks fan is aware, however, when you trade your future #1 picks away, this strategy no longer works. So, in true Isiah Thomas fashion, the Liberty went into November's lottery handing the Minnesota Lynx the best shot at the top overall pick, since they received New York's 26% in addition to their own 17%. So, when New York inevitably won the top overall choice and Minnesota took the fourth overall, it was a big victory for the Lynx. Making this victory even better, however, was the fact that the only team that finished with a worse record than the Liberty, the Sacramento Monarchs (12-22, 42% chance), will not be needing the second overall pick they were awarded. Indeed, the Lynx will select both first and third overall in April's draft.

Which brings us to the good news for the Liberty: it's the 2009 Sacramento Monarchs Dispersal Draft! Held via conference call on December 14th, the Liberty landed All-Star Nicole Powell with the top pick (apperently the Monarchs went under so fast, New York didn't even have a chance to trade away their Dispersal Draft picks). I know what you're thinking: adding an All-Star out of the blue is going to kill our cap space! But, alas, the CBA also allows the salary cap for the 2010 season to be raised from $803,000 to $827,000, allowing more than enough room for a few All-Stars and maybe even a couple maintenance workers so the Liberty players no longer have to clean up the whole arena after every home game.

Finally, before leaving you I must discuss my displeasure with Commissioner David Stern, who, since my last post, just sat around and did nothing while one of the league's most storied franchises was heartlessly bought off by an Oklahoma-based ownership group and shipped away. In complete ignorance of the loyal fans, Mr. Stern did nothing to prevent a proud sports city from losing its most successful team in recent memory. It is not only the fans that have been outraged by this criminal act; the players have also expressed their displeasure. In fact, the team is currently very worried that two of the team's All-Stars will refuse to play in their new city. Indeed, both Deanna Nolan and Katie Smith have said through their respective agents (who presumably have day jobs) that they will not be honoring their contract extensions as they pertain to playing in Tulsa.

R.I.P. Detroit Shock (1998-2009).


Anonymous said...

Good god this is greatG

"The Pez-Dispenser" said...

you never fail to impress

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