Too Little, Too Late?
8.16 The Cooler

Agent Zero, playground hero

By 08.16.09
Gilbert Arenas

Gilbert Arenas

Back during his peak, one of the things we loved about Gilbert Arenas was that he’d randomly show up at D.C.’s famous Barry Farms court to play in the Goodman League, putting in work against the D.C./Maryland area’s best playground ballplayers with the same attitude that he’d go at Deron Williams or D-Wade on an NBA court. But then the injuries started to pile up, and even when he was healthy here and there, Gilbert understandably wasn’t as much of a presence on any concrete court while Kevin Durant took over the mantle as the NBA’s Barry Farms regular. On his way back from this latest injury, though, Arenas has not only looked like his old self indoors, he’s also back on the playground. According to the Washington Post, in a Goodman League game from this past Friday, Arenas dropped 35 points and seven dimes and dunked “effortlessly.” Confirming what Flip Saunders has said on record, Arenas didn’t look like somebody getting over a knee injury … So if we can go out on a limb and say Arenas will be 100% healthy this season, how do you think he’ll do? In his prime he was dropping 28-30 points a night, but in his brief stint with the Wizards late last season, looked like he might be trying to be more of a playmaker/passer. Is 22 points and seven assists a night a modest goal for Arenas in ’09-10? Should we go higher than that? … The last thing Orlando wants is for Marcin Gortat to get injured before he even has a chance to not live up to his contract. The Polish McIlvaine suffered a back strain while playing for his national team the other day, but so far it’s being called a minor injury. Nic Batum also hurt his shoulder playing for Team France recently. You can tell which organizations have money to burn in these cases: The Lakers sent a doctor to Spain to check on Pau Gasol when he got hurt, but the Blazers are asking Batum to fly back to Portland to evaluate the injury … Signs of the recession hitting the NBA: A jeweler in L.A. is suing O.J. Mayo, claiming O.J. never paid for $150,000 worth of product he had made a little before last summer’s draft. According to the lawsuit, O.J. ordered the first batch of jewels on April 1, 2008, about a week after his freshman season ended at USC and before he declared for the NBA Draft … The Cavs keep making small moves to get slightly better. After bringing in Jamario Moon, Anthony Parker and Leon Powe, yesterday they signed Rob Kurz, who stuck around with the Warriors last season as a solid outside-shooting big man. Seeing the way the rest of the Cavs played as the postseason went on, anybody who can put the ball in the hole is worth at least consideration for the roster. Kurz probably won’t play much, but he’ll give Shaq somebody to stomp all over in practice … Speaking of dunking dummies, do you realize Darko might mess around and end up starting at center for the Knicks? Between Darko and Eddy Curry, does any team go two-deep with two worse players at any position? … Baron Davis to the L.A. Times: “The way I see it, we’re the worst team. We’ve got a huge mountain to climb. The only way we’re going to do that is be the team that works the hardest.” Gotta love that Clippers’ positivity. Somebody should tell Baron that they weren’t really the worst team in the League, but whatever gets you motivated, right? … E-mail from Dime’s Austin Burton: “Saw two very random jerseys while on vacation in Ocean Shores (Wash.): Broncos Jake Plummer, and a Sacramento Kings Gerald Wallace. Crash was in that one dunk contest when he played for the Kings, but I don’t remember him doing anything else.” … Remember we told you about the Lakers 3-on-3 Tournament going on in Cali this weekend? On Day 1 of the tourney yesterday, Bryon Russell was on one of the teams, and he lost early. Not a good look for an ex-NBA dude. Said Dime’s Aron Phillips: “He’s still shook since MJ stole his soul.” … We’re out like O.J.’s ice budget …


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