Wednesday, September 20, 2006

NBA 2010, Part 3

Well, I wasn't going to post on the NBA 2010 series on espn.com today. I really wasn't. It's not that interesting of a series, and I didn't think I had too much more to say about it. But then they went and had not one but two Clipper references, so I figured I was obligated to say something.

Today's question is, "Which player is most likely to eventually supplant Dirk Nowitzki as the best international player in the NBA?"

Marc Spears, who provided easily the lamest answers to the first two questions in the series, continues his streak by picking Sofoklis Schortsianitis, MBFGC. Obviously, Clipper Nation hopes he is correct, especially if the Clips can buy out his Olympiakos contract any time soon. (I'm still not clear on how big a mistake they made by not getting him here this year.) But, supplanting Dirk? I mean, I know MBFGC is only 21 (Dirk is 28), so he's in the right age range. Yao is only 26. Is Sofo going to be better than Yao any time soon? We can certainly hope. (FYI, after watching him the Worlds, I do like his game... A LOT. But 'best international player in the NBA' which equates to best non US born player in the world, is a stretch.)

I will give Spears credit for making a bold choice. Picking Yao or Darko is pretty tame. Picking someone who has yet to play a minute in the NBA is definitely more gutsy. I might go with Yi from China. He's only 19, a complete FREAK of an athlete, 6'11" and still growing. He could be really special. It's not a stretch to say he could be better than Yao.

(The second Clipper reference, btw, was singling out Yao's 25 and 17 against Kaman last season. Of course Yao has always KILLED Kaman, so to imply that having a big game against the Clips proves he's truly arrived is disingenuous. Don't know why exactly, but Yao just owns Kaman.)

No one picked Andrea Bargnani, which tells you what people think of this year's draft.

Finally, does anyone else find it strange that Dirk is being presented as the pinnacle, when the TWO TIME DEFENDING MVP is also foreign born? I'd say Dirk has to supplant Nash before anyone has to supplant Dirk.