Baron Davis and White Chocolate Team Up, the Olympics are here, and Ron Artest gets a ‘chip

By: 08.08.08  •  41 Comments
Baron DavisBaron Davis, Dime #29

Back in 2000, if you had put Baron Davis and Jason Williams on the same NBA squad, it would have been like one of those Jason Kidd/Steve Nash or Mark Price/Kevin Johnson deals: Both guys would be too good to share the PG duties, so one would eventually have to be traded. Eight years later, it’s not that kind of party. Baron is clearly the superstar and White Chocolate — whom the Clippers agreed to a deal with yesterday — is clearly the backup. Plus both are players who you hope to get maybe 65 games out of before the injuries start coming … And does it bother anyone in L.A. that two significant additions to their rebuilding effort were prominently involved with one of the worst NBA teams of the last decade, the 15-win Miami Heat? Between J-Will and Ricky Davis, the stench of losing is all over the Clippers locker room, as if it wasn’t bad enough already … This also means Shaun Livingston definitely isn’t coming back to the Clips. We can think of a few teams that need point guard depth — like the Celtics, Cavs, Hornets, Suns, Nuggets and Warriors to name a few — but not all of them have open roster spots. If there’s room on your team for Livingston, do you take a chance on him? … Meanwhile, the Heat picked up Yakhouba Diawara, one of the few Nuggets who seemed to take pride in defense (two of the others, Camby and Najera, also left). As solid as Diawara’s defense is on the perimeter, his offense is far behind. His J is broke, but with some practice he could turn into a Kelenna Azubuike/Mickael Pietrus type of contributor … The free agent pool is quickly drying up otherwise. After Josh Smith and Andre Iguodala, for example, the best forwards available are guys like Dorell Wright, Carl Landry and The Ghost of Juwan Howard. Check out the list HERE. And the list of remaining centers is just too sad to print … Early-morning Smack readers might be catching this in the middle of the Opening Ceremonies from Beijing. Look out for Dirk, Manu, AK-47 and Yao bearing their country’s flags and leading their respective delegations, and check for LeBron and Team USA possibly rocking these orange backpacks … Some of the Dime crew went up to NYC’s Hunter College last night for the Nike Pro City playground tourney championship. Ron Artest led the squad from Queensbridge — featuring Ryan “Special FX” Williams (St. John’s, AND 1 Mix Tape Tour), Alexis Foyle (Adonal‘s cousin) and Darryl “Showtime” Hill (St. John’s) — to the ‘chip, dropping about 35 points … What’s the best hoop team you’ve ever played on? We know a lot of our readers have played college and pro ball in various countries, and if not played in high school and in countless rec leagues and asphalt runs. We’ve already got a lot of good stories HERE … It’s been a while so we don’t remember it exactly, but was the media coverage this crazy when Michael Jordan decided to come back to the Bulls after the baseball thing? Were there reporters crawling around airports in random cities waiting for MJ’s plane to touch down? Were we keeping track of every phone call, page (remember beepers?), hand gesture and facial twitch Mike was making at the time? This whole Brett Favre thing has been crazy, but at least here in New York it’s taken some attention away from the Knicks … Yesterday NBA TV showed a Hawks/Knicks game from 1991: double OT, Dominique dropped 54, but ATL lost. Cameos by Pat Ewing, Mark Jackson, Gerald Wilkins, X-Man, John Starks, Mo Cheeks, Rumeal Robinson and Stacey Augmon, plus Pat Riley coaching in his first season with the Knicks. Early in the game the announcers were talking about how Gerald Wilkins always got all worked up and bent out of shape whenever he played against Dominique, and then a few minutes later ‘Nique ABUSED him with a double up-and-under move in the post. Gerald flipped out and screamed at the ref for some reason (he must’ve thought it was a travel), drawing a tech … More fascinating to watch than ‘Nique, though, was Kevin Willis and Charles Oakley beating the s*** out of each other in the paint. This was around the time when those two were definitely the strongest guys in the League — remember that made-for-TV weightlifting competition when Willis and his alligator arms beat Oakley on the bench press? Last time we saw Willis he was beasting some poor dudes on “Pros vs. Joes” (the same show where X-Man once showed up pushing 310), and of course you can find Oakley wherever MJ is at … We’re out like White Chocolate starting ever again …

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