We were soooo close. Imagine if the proper etiquette when you went out to eat or hit up happy hour was to tip two percent. That would feel like nothing. Well in what was considered to be the biggest day thus far of the lockout – the first one where a good percentage of those involved legitimately believed a deal could get done – the guys ended where they started: with nothing. The talks broke down on the dreaded BRI when neither the players nor the owners would move off their stances. The players wanted 52 percent; The owners were at 50. Of course, it’s pretty stupid to compare tipping $6 with a CBA for the NBA but still in the context – with millionaires fighting billionaires, you get our drift. You are two percent away. You want to know how easy it is to fix that? Each side give up a point. Oh my god! How did we ever come up with that? As of now we officially will not have a full season. David Stern made that announcement, while Yahoo! Sports reported that games through November will be canceled. From here on out, the players will see the deal get worse and worse … In case you needed any more bad news, Dwight Howard isn’t playing in the “World Not-Quite-All-Star… We Mean ALL-STAR Classic” either. The game in Puerto Rico on Sunday has now been canceled because the organizer couldn’t deliver the players. This just seems like a bad party now doesn’t it? Someone just cancel the whole thing already … Dwight might not be playing in the world tour, but he is cooking up something that I’m sure many fans will be more interested in. Shaq and Penny together again? The old school Superman and the new school Superman on the court at the same time? Fireworks. Howard is bringing them all together, along with guys like Jason Richardson and Grant Hill (why would he want to come back?) this November 13 in Orlando. Tickets are already on sale … According to Spanish journalist Alberto de Roa, J.R. Smith played his first friendly game with his new team, Zhejiang, and put up 33, 10 and 10. He did promise us he was going for nightly triple-doubles. Still we are surprised. Over/under on a Ricky Davis moment happening at some point this season? … Phil Jackson thinks Chicago overachieved last season as a one-dimensional team. On “The Waddle & Silvy Show” on ESPN 1000, Jackson believes that while Rose was basically unstoppable last year, the team needs shooters and needs Carlos Boozer to step up if they have any chance of taking the next step. Of course Rose needs help. He nearly set usage rate records during the playoffs. The Bulls leaned on him more than “Two & A Half Men” did Charlie Sheen. It’s been said 1,000 times before, but the Bulls need more shooters and they need another player who can create his own shot. Is that Boozer? Probably not. Is that Luol Deng? That’s not his game. They might eventually have to make a move. The defense is already chip-worthy, but relying that much on one player – especially in the biggest stages – is only going to wear him down and destroy his efficiency. What are you expecting out of Chicago this year? Rose will again kill it, but if they have the same team once again we just can’t see them beating Miami. LeBron might not lock Rose up again, but he’ll give him trouble. Who else can be a difference maker? … What was the best part of our Friday? When Rick Ross tweeted #thebossback … Watching this video of Kobe Bryant‘s final high school game is funny enough (for one, this could’ve been taped yesterday and you wouldn’t even know looking at Kobe). But it’s the commemorative article that comes along with it that has us dying. One of the guards who played against him that day apparently said after the game was over that Bryant wasn’t that good and was a little overhyped. Yeah, um… how’d that work out? … Deron Williams is finally turning it around over in Turkey. He had another big game recently, beating Mehmet Okur (18 points, 13 rebounds) & Telekom Ankara by nine. Williams went off for 23 points and eight dimes … And after barely surviving in their first game against the Dominican Republic in the Pan American Games, USA Basketball came back from 17 down to beat Brazil, 88-77. How crazy was it? They were down 17 midway through the third, outscoring Brazil by 28 the rest of the way. Blake Ahearn had 21 and Justin Dentmon had 16. Seriously, if you are up 17 in a third quarter and then end up losing by double digits, you should just go home. The press release mentioned “great leadership” from Ahearn. Now we know why. He broke up a fight … We’re out like the Rangers.
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