Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Ebayin' Cleveland

Don't have enough Cleveland sports garbage? Great, because it's time once again to jump into the Internet and do a little Ebay window shopping.

First up we have a 10 inch collectible plate featuring former Cavalier Mark Price. At $12.99 I'm not sure how anyone could consider this auction anything but a steal. In my "Commemorative Plate Power Rankings" I have Price at number 4, sandwiched in between Kyle Petty and John F. Kennedy.

And I'm aware an item like this is solely meant for decoration, but honestly -- if I owned a Mark Price plate I would eat every single meal off it. How much better would a pile of nachos taste knowing you had the angelic face of number 25 waiting for you at the bottom?

Up next we have a cut-out paper mask of former Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar. Perfect for the goofy football fan or aspiring serial killer in your family. Really though, I've been trying to come up with legitimate reasons why a person would buy such an item and could only think of three: 1. buyer is producing a low-budget student film with some sort of futuristic "Orwellian" theme, 2. buyer is going as Steve Guttenberg for Halloween or 3. buyer is Bernie Kosar.

Also, I'm pretty sure that if you stare into the eye holes of that picture for more than 30 seconds you'll end up burning down a school or something. I can't look for more than 10 without foaming at the mouth and banging my head against the floor.

I suppose this next item proves just how little fanfare the Cleveland Rockers actually had. For about $50 you can own the Rockers 1998 Eastern Conference Championship banner, autographed by half the team. The key word there is "the." This is not a replica or old promotional item -- this is THE banner that once hung in the rafters of Quicken Loans Arena. I wonder what the conversation was like when they decided to finally rip it down:

DAN GILBERT: Hey, I was talking a pass through the floor today and have a question. What are the Cleveland Rockers?

ASSISTANT: They were the city's WNBA team sir. They won the eastern conference in 1998 but were---

DAN GILBERT: I stopped listening after you said "W." Tear that banner down right away.

ASSISTANT: Do you want to replace it with anything sir?

DAN GILBERT: I don't know. Is it too early to retire Kevin Ollie's number?

And finally we have a Cleveland Indians silk tie. Ah, novelty ties. Perfect for saying, "hi, I don't dress up often. I'm more of a jean shorts and tank top kind of guy. And when I'm put in a position where formal attire is required, you can expect me to push the envelope. Tasmanian Devil cuff links, a "Big Johnson" undershirt and a pair of tinted eyeglasses usually round out my get up. If you see me standing alone on the other side of the room it's best to leave me be. That is unless you want me to talk your ear off about my idea for a 4th Matrix movie. Because I will baby, I will. Don't test me. I wear a neck tie with a baseball team on it."

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Mike Brown vs. The Call

Last night the Cavaliers were victims of a questionable call that ultimately cost them their 40th win. Up by one with less than a second left, official Joey Crawford called a foul on LeBron James that resulted in the Pacers winning the game via free throws. Afterwards no one was more agitated with the officiating than Cleveland coach Mike Brown:

"I went back and I watched the last two plays and that last call on LeBron was the worst call I've ever been a part of. I cannot imagine another worse call than that by that official. It was an awful call and for him to take away a basketball game from a team with .4 seconds on the clock is irresponsible. That is an irresponsible call."

Brown continues on.

"It was predetermined from the call that was made on the other end of the floor and it was very unfortunate because there were a lot of men out on the floor that were working their (butts) off to try to win the ball game. We got that game taken away from us on a horse shit -- excuse my French -- horsecrap call with .2 seconds left on the clock by that official. Absolutely horrible."

Brown then leaves the room, only to return moments later.

"Listen, I don't want to leave any of this unsettled or open for interpretation. Witnessing that call on the court tonight made me sad for basketball and sad for America. Calls like that only come around once in a generation. If that call were a color it would be the darkest of pitch black. If it were a sound it would be that of babies crying. And if that call were a person, so help me -- it would be Jeffery Dahmer. What I saw tonight with .1 seconds left in the game was the Jeffery Dahmer of NBA officiating."

Brown leaves once again, gets in his car and hops onto the freeway. Before the first exit however, he turns around and heads back to the arena and every reporter he can find.

"When I was 6-years-old I spent the night at my friend Brian Bolley's house. Late into the night we were woken by his drunk mother screaming on the telephone. On the other line was child services. Mrs. Bolley was calling to tell them she no longer wanted her son and that they should come get him within 24 hours or else she'd leave him at a bus station. The next day Brian was taken away and placed in a foster home, abandoned by his own mother. I've always said that call was the worst call I'd ever witnessed. Well, I can now safely say I've seen a more despicable call." Brown begins to weep and takes a seat. "I'm sorry guys, I don't even know what I'm saying anymore. What's going on? Where am I?"

Finally, Brown leaves the arena and goes to his hotel room. But at 2:30 AM he grabs his phone, dials up every Cavs reporter he has a contact for and puts them on a conference call. He speaks in a whisper.

"I'm sorry to wake you guys but I just don't want to be alone tonight. I think the call is beginning to get the better of me. I can't get the sound of that ref's whistle out of my head and thoughts of physically harming myself are now starting to accompany it. I don't know what to do. I'm scared. Okay, I gotta go. I think the NBA might have this phone bugged."

Brown hangs up the phone.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

After Hours with LeBron James

How do you celebrate a 52 point triple-double in New York City? Here's a glimpse into how LeBron did:

11:02 PM: LeBron, Ben Wallace, Delonte West and Mo Williams exit Madison Square Garden and head towards the Hummer limo waiting for them. LeBron suddenly stops, "Hey, I forgot something, you guys go ahead."

11:03 PM: LeBron approaches MSG, checks no one is around and gently presses both of his hands onto the arena. "You're the reason I wake up in the morning. I love you," LeBron says aloud. "I love you too," he then replies back to himself in a high pitched squeak.

11:28 PM: LeBron and company arrive at Jay-Z's 40/40 Club. "You guys got your ID's on you, this place will totally card...just kidding," LeBron says before laughing hysterically. Everyone fake laughs at LeBron's comment as though they've done so 1,000 times before.

11:32 PM: LeBron flags down a waitress and orders a round of what he calls his "Triple Double Cocktail" -- 1 double shot of Gin, 1 double shot of Bourbon and 1 double shot of contact lens solution.

12:40 AM: Wally Szczerbiak and Zydrunas Ilgauskas show up to the club. LeBron, who is chatting with Jay-Z, calls the two over. After being introduced to Jay-Z, Szczerbiak asks him if he's the same rapper who sang "Whoop! There it is." An angry LeBron tells Szczerbiak to wait outside until he's called back in.

1:52 AM: An NYU student purposely catches LeBron's attention from the bar. After filling his hands with salt, he throws his arms up in the air, imitating LeBron's talcum power pregame routine. LeBron immediately orders Zydrunas Ilgauskas over to break the kid's thumbs.

2:38 AM: LeBron decides he wants a change of scenery and the group leave 40/40. As they climb into the Hummer, LeBron notices that Wally Szczerbiak -- shivering from the cold -- is still waiting outside the club entrance. "Hey Wally, you wanna come with us?" LeBron yells. "Yes," Wally replies. "Too bad, go home," LeBron says as he closes the car door.

2:50 AM: Back in the limo, LeBron tells the driver to shout out any letter in the alphabet. "Um, R," the driver says. LeBron then pulls out his phone and types in R and indiscriminately chooses a contact and hits "call." It's Ricky Davis. Davis picks up and LeBron puts the phone on speaker for everyone to listen. "Hello? Hello? Who is this, hello? Come on!" Everyone in the car bursts into laughter and LeBron hangs up.

3:03 AM: The group stops in for another round of "Triple Doubles" at an Irish Pub.

3:59 AM: Delonte West asks the limo driver to pull over so he can vomit. While idling, LeBron notices a homeless man hunched over on a bench. "Follow me guys," LeBron says as he gets out of the limo.

4:02 AM: "Hey, you want to make some money?" LeBron says to the homeless man. "Sing the theme song to 'Cheers' and I'll give you 2,000 dollars." But before the man can even open his mouth LeBron and company begin shouting the lyrics to the song themselves. Afterward, James hands the man around 3,000 dollars in cash and says "good job."

4:28 AM: LeBron and Zydrunas Ilgauskas, eyes half open, sit in an all night diner eating a couple of gyros. "Z, I think my next NY shoes are gonna have to be designed with a gyro theme. That'd look awesome."

5:12 AM: LeBron stumbles into his hotel room, collapses onto a bed and falls asleep to a TV playing highlights from his historic triple-double a few hour earlier.