So we’ve heard all the yakking that can be yakked. It was almost enough to last a full year, and yet it was only the beginning! The good news is that this season, talk simply isn’t going to go very far at all. Surely Mister Colangelo has some inkling that some kind of lasting foundation needs to be firmly in place by this time next year. By then, there had better be a sense of what kind of direction this team is going in, with a culture of some sort in place, or he might finally be held accountable by the fans. So far this season, he looks to be satisfied to offer a grab bag of false hopes, citing the season now a mere dot in the rearview mirror, when critics supposedly guessed at a 12th place finish, and they actually finished 3rd. I know I had thought they would win more than 45 games that year, and I don’t remember many that didn’t think they might at least have a chance to fight for a playoff spot. There was some really positive press about Bargnani. Bosh had established himself. There was some optimism regarding TJ Ford returning to his original form. The biggest question surrounding the team back then was Mitchell’s continued employment, and mostly because he was signed on before Colangelo’s arrival. The situation does not look to be parallel in any way, and even Bryan himself had to make sure nobody thought he was suggesting anything quite as successful as a 3rd place finish was going to happen this season. So what was he saying exactly? More of the same I would propose. He has been living off that award-winning season for quite a while now, and a truckload of disappointment has come down the highway since then, which we are supposed to forget as if it was in the distant past.
It’s quite a trick of perspective, but like I say, there are going to have to be some tangible results that use those tricks of perspective in painting a picture that would seem to have some kind of lasting effect. There is more than just false hopes that he is able to point to. He’s got the TPE at his disposal. He did free himself of the Turkoglu contract, and can look at some financial flexibility in the near term. We might all be looking at one of the franchise’s better draft picks by this time next year. So he’s definitely got something to work with to avoid all the same talk from looping through the streams come next media day.
This time around though, like too many of the last while, media day was a little too much like seeing Zsa Zsa Gabor on Merv Griffin. She was always on there with her “oh dahlink”, but every time it played out like an obnoxious couple on their first date, and no matter how flirtatious they tried to be, you just knew it would never go anywhere. By this time next year, I expect, and would demand if it made any difference, no more Zsa Zsa. It’s gotta be Charo. She always had a lot less to say, but she always backed up every word with some action. A simple coochie-coochie-coo, with the right shimmy and shake, was plenty enough way back when, and it would work for me now, although I’m not sure what cleavage would necessarily represent in this analogy. Hell- it’s cleavage. Let’s just leave it at that. The thing with Charo is this – she would go on to to show off some flamenco guitar playing skills following the goofy coochie-coo routine. And even though mediocre, it was fun and enjoyable all the same, and if you tried really hard, you might feel like you’ve been culturally enlightened and ready for something really heady. She knew how to follow through on a sales job.
So here’s hoping that the big guy figures out what kind of tune we’ll eventually hear, and be able to make all the talk short and sweet without offering false hope alone. I don’t need We Are the Champions to be on the playlist just yet, but I would like some selections I might be able to fool myself into thinking are more than just a collection of songs by the kids that didn’t win American Idol. With this season, there is just no way of knowing what we’ll get, so maybe he gets a pass for being all over the place with his sales job, since it would only reflect on him simply having no way of knowing.
Finally, to round everything out, let me go from the song and dance (with cleavage), to food, because I’m sure there was something to digest in all that chatter, and if Merv Griffin was back in the stone ages for you, then maybe this can help get you through the season. This season is simply going to be like eating dim sum. Every little piece is pretty tasty. You feel like nourishment isn’t of foremost importance. And you just can’t be sure what will be coming on the next tray that gets wheeled your way. The odd time it can be a little dim, and altogether the sum of the parts will never add up to more than the sum of the parts. But you can be pretty sure that there will always be a dumpling filled with ground pork somewhere on your table, and that’s not great, but it’s something. So here’s hoping for that much. A little luck going forward would be nice, and what else are fortune cookies for? Luck or no luck, Colangelo will have to be held accountable, and stop putting lipstick on anymore cooked pigs. He’s going to have to upgrade the pork dumplings for a main course of barbecue in a year’s time, and point us all in the direction of some beefy offerings from there.