Fast Break Thoughts

Kurt —  September 1, 2009

A few hoop thoughts while wishing those near the fire luck…

• If you haven’t seen this, Jordan Farmar gave an interview this week saying he wants to be a starter in the NBA, with the Lakers or somewhere:

“I want to run a team and be the lead guard,” Farmar said Tuesday on the sidelines of a basketball clinic in Singapore. “Hopefully, it can be here (with the Lakers).”

“There’s a lot of jobs out there. I feel I have a lot to offer.”

My note to Farmar: The job is there, you have to take it. It is time for Fisher to be relegated to a backup roll, to step aside and maybe retire in the next year or so, but he is still the champ, the guy with the trust of the coach and who hits key shots in the playoffs. It’s the old boxing adage: If you want to take the belt off the champion, you have to knock him out. Jordan, you need to come into camp playing so much better than Fisher, and continue that through the season, that Phil Jackson has no choice but to start you. Play better than him on defense, make better decisions on offense.

There were some of us that hoped you would do this last season, and to be blunt you did not. You regressed. Blame the injury if you want, or confusion about your role, but in the end those are excuses. This job is there for the taking. You or Shannon Brown should get it, but if neither steps up the team has decisions to make.

Make the decision for them. Then you get the contract and the role you want. It’s on you, nobody else.

• Gary Vitti got a nice trip to Barcelona, probably ate some amazing tapas, and while he was at it cleared Pau Gasol to play for Spain in Eurobasket. I’m not going to go Mark Cuban here, because in the “club vs. country” debate I tend to land on the side of country.

Yes, there are injury risks, and I get the money tied up in Gasol. But if he was not playing and practicing Eurobasket, he would be in the gym and playing unregulated pickup games, and injuries can happen there, too. The injury risk is ever present on the court. I like how sharp playing competitive games can keep a player, and as long as he is not mentally worn out I say Pau should do what he wants.

• I’m really torn about the last episode of Entourage: I love that E finally told Sloan basically “you’re in or out, no halfway.” But that meant the return of Ashley, and for some reason that actress/character just bugs the crap out of me. Can’t stand her, not sure why, don’t really care. The sooner she is gone the better. Same with the new security team. If it wasn’t for Pivin this show might have lost me, maybe a season ago.

• Just bought Herbie Hancock’s “River: the joni letters” and am enjoying it very much.

• Also, just about to dive into Thomas Pynchon’s “Inherent Vice” for some light end of the summer reading. Anyone read it? Thoughts?

• If you were drafting Ricky Rubio, you had to know there was at least a 50/50 chance he would be in Europe for at least couple more years. And that’s not a bad thing. But it makes some of David Kahn’s remarks seeming to slam Rubio come off as petty and small.

• Damn the summer can be long and hot. When does basketball start again?