Q : What do David Alridge and Stephen A. Smith have in common? Aside from being well-compensated, TV basketball mouthpieces with widespread exposure? A : Both of them are routinely pilloried by the NY Post’s Peter Vescey, who coincidently, used to be a studio yackmeister of some repute when NBC had the NBA contract.
More than ever I’m convinced TNT stands for Truly Nothing There. Thursday’s post-game show proved marginally more insightful than its commercials. Still, its precious anthology of analysts only managed to offend five of my six senses.
Hours following the busiest trade day since 1987, the bulk of the 30 minutes was dedicated to the Mensa Members discussing who was the best-looking and a shameless plug of the upcoming movie “Sahara,” including a fawn-fest with star Matthew McConaughey.
As for TNT’s information officer, David Aldridge, interesting how little breaking news he has to offer these days left to his own devises; he was so much better equipped when adhering to ESPN policy of stealing everyone else’s report and confirming it as if just learned . . . exclusively.
If Aldridge hadn’t confiscated so much of my material over the years, I’d almost feel sorry for him. Again, last Thursday following the movement of 35 players within 24 hours the best “fresh” stuff he could provide from beyond the screens was a purported conversation between the Rockets and Timberwolves involving Juwan Howard for Sam Cassell, “but Houston backed off a little.”
Backed off a little? What in the name of Slim Fat Joe (in case you haven’t caught him live lately) does that mean? Earth to Aldridge: For future reference, there’s no fractionalization to a deal, it’s either impregnated or it’s not. And, please, do your audience a favor, find something more compelling to report from the sidelines (during the All-Star Game) than “Ray Allen is a free agent after the season, and hasn’t been able to come to an agreement with Seattle yet.”
Wow! Had Aldridge done some homework he might’ve discovered the Sonics and Allen (30 on July 20) are snagged on a fifth guaranteed season.
It’s as simple and expensive as that. Seattle is offering four years in the gated community of $68M, the same elite neighborhood Rasheed Wallace (10 months older) is dwelling since re-signing last summer with the Pistons. Allen, currently earning $14.625M, wants another $20M or so.
(You can have your Chamberlain vs. Reed, Sweetny vs. Mihm is truly a rivalry for the ages.)
For those who are still paying attention, the Knicks’ OT win over the Lakers last night put the Knicks a mere 5 games out of the 8th and final Eastern Conference playoff spot. Though with 5 teams to leap-frog, this factoid is only of interest if your last name is Dolan and you have intentions of soliciting playoff ticket deposits in the days ahead.