Halfway Through The Journey

By Eric G. Satterwhite
Updated: February 27, 2009

Spalding BasketballNEW YORK — The NBA season much like scalawag space satellites is plunging towards the playoffs in a season where economic equations, individual player excellence, and anything but the habitual paralleling a Shaq/Jabberwockee dancing with the All-Stars routine can’t mask. The metaphysics of hoops imbued with metaphorical musings is the crux of what’s cracking in this NBA installment.

Wade through the Water

Miami’s Dwyane Wade converging off a scanty season where he once-over loomed like a “Flash” in the Heat-ed pan “ne plus ultras” the league in scoring and has exuberantly freed up his contiguous illegal b-ball game like a con fresh out the can.

Wade the 5 pointed star figurine for his Converse brand logo akin to Leonardo DaVinci’s world renown drawing “The Vitruvian Man” has squared (basketball court) the circle (basketball) for the NBA’s southernmost franchise in the conquest column with his own version of the DaVinci code.

Miami is presently the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference playoff standings in colossal cut to Wade’s cosmic basketball gifts. His staggering statistical yield as is tallies points/rebounds/assists is barely eclipsed by one player NBA all-inclusive that is Cavalier legend LeBron James.

No. 3 is in the mix for league MVP despite the youthful retooled/makeup of his Miami support group led by first year coach Erik Spoelstra the first NBA head coach of Philippine descent. Wade’s season that has waded thru heavy personal suspense this NBA session via the abnormal public toxic divorce, personal character assassination, and slipshod business judgments.

Wade’s relentless offensive attack style ethereally channels this verbiage to NBA opponents, “You’re just a soldier and I’m a Green Beret I do not think twice about the defenders I slay.” Yet Wade reciprocal to a South Beach palm tree has absorbed/swayed his hellish hurricane off court rain deluge with that simple stanza for all adversaries on hoop hardwood.

Casualties of Coaching

Head coaches Eddie Jordan, Sam Mitchell, Reggie Theus, Terry Porter, Maurice Cheeks, Randy Wittman, Marc Iavoroni, and PJ Carlesimo have all been pink slipped during the 2008-2009 NBA campaign. The aforementioned coaching casualty triumvirate Wittman, Iavoroni, and Carlesimo will get a quick take before we chop up remember this old school “Five on the black-hand side.” Wittman was kindled after not wholly coaching 3 full seasons with the holey Timberwolves where he won an unholy 27% of his games. Iavoroni who prior to the current NBA campaign was given an improve or else mandate by Memphis Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley was silenced from the grisly Grizzly sideline after 1.5 seasons with a woeful winning percentage of 27% after 1.5 seasons.

Oklahoma City’s Carlesimo he of the attending press conference of several years ago advertising neck tire tracks from a Sprewell rim ringlet was ran over after winning 1 of 13 games in this League interval. Coach PJ went 20-62 a season ago in the last NBA run for the Seattle Supersonics despite 2008 Rookie of the year Kevin Durant and 2008 All Rookie Jeff Green. Sam Mitchell the 2007 NBA Coach of the year while leading Toronto was banished after an 8-9 start and a 41-41 record in 2007-2008. Mitchell coached 4 plus seasons as the Raptor head honcho before going the way of the dinosaur into current coaching extinction.

Sacramento Kings regent Reggie Theus caught in limbo between a Kings rebuilding process in the Association’s 916 area code and his personal desire to win at all costs was simply not in synchronicity with the designs of management and his individual intents. Theus coached 1.3 seasons with the woeful Kings and was let go after a blowout loss and 6-18 record. Mo Cheeks return to Philadelphia the place of his distinguished days, as a player was an inglorious finale. Cheeks won 49% of his games based his 7 plus year coaching career and was 9-14 before sauntering the Philly streets approximating prizefighter Rocky Balboa with a miffed “Yo Adrian” complex.

Eddie Jordan who was fired this season after a 1-10 start was in his 6th season as Washington Wizard coach. Jordan went to the playoffs the previous 4 seasons and had only 1 losing season in DC before competing in NBA arenas without Gilbert Arenas. The Suns Terry Porter approached the All Star break in Phoenix with a 55% winning percentage, Suns All Star starter Amare Stoudemire being bandied as barter bait, and media verbiage of Porter’s position as Suns skipper being immediately terminated shortly navigating his personal circumference. Porter should have sensed his Suns coaching career climaxing to conclusion with an operatic peculiarity. Porter was in attendance when his starting center hit the All Star game stage donned in Phantom of the Opera gear before the desert All Star contest. Within a few days Suns management seated Porter in the 2008-2009 coaching casualty catacombs.

Sidebar: Seven of the eight coaches were former NBA players with Carlesimo the only dislodged coach never to suit up in a NBA official game.

Tinsley Town

Brooklyn native the Indiana Pacer’s Jamaal Tinsley a starting point guard of considerable talent has seen zero NBA player minutes this Association term for his respective employer despite being healthy, wealthy, and stealthy to Conseco Fieldhouse paying constituents. The reason why? Tinsley’s alleged off court conduct has dictated that his respective corporation brain trust defy Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) governmental provisions by shutting down Tinsley’s natural right to perform with all rights and privileges as mandated by Tinsley’s player contract.

Additionally, the increasing disconnects between NBA management and the NBA player’s association is on a collision course for assured fireworks during the nearing Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations slated to commence before the 2011-12 season. From an insider perspective, NBA management league wide is interconnected like ancient Egyptian papyri and composed of a linear network of leadership types stealthily supporting management mishaps amongst cronies.

Again, this is not universal league wide yet this dogma of collusion rules the majority. The grudge factor from league front office personnel reveals itself with an intent to rush off purported rogue players to the gulags of basketball inactivity if players do not yield to management’s heavy handed ‘hand over your soul” agendas.

Tinsley, with three years remaining on his contract worth 21 million currently corrals Pacer pesos as Indy elects to part proceeds for Tinsley’s despite absentee production. Indiana’s leadership headed by Larry Bird has tried to trade Tinsley (to no avail) and refuses at this time to buyout the 7 times 3 million owed Jamaal in a see you later lump sum. Tinsley’s nameplate was stripped from his stall in the Pacer locker room prior to the season and Tinsley has zilch partnership with Pacer events at Conseco Fieldhouse.

To keep the script tight Tinsley has a caveat of off the playing forum theater. In October 2006 Tinsley was clubbing with then teammate and current Golden State Warrior Stephen Jackson when Jackson gun busted multiple caps in the Indianapolis atmosphere prior to Jackson getting hit by an oncoming car outside a shake spot. In February 2007 Tinsley and Pacer teammate Marquis Daniels were allegedly bar room brawling at Second Saloons in “NapTown”. The result rendered Tinsley charges of intimidation and misdemeanor counts of battery, disorderly conduct and intimidation.

The charges were dropped as Teflon Tinsley tiptoed to the final act of “wilding out” for Pacer superintendence. During December 2007 Tinsley’s twilight temptations tended Tinsley to Cloud 9 an Indianapolis nightclub. Tinsley and his posse floating in three auto’s owned by the Pacer point position drove towards the City’s downtown only to have a trailing vehicle armed with a sniper buck multiple rounds from a .223 assault rifle ripping ruin in Tinsley’s Rolls Royce ride. Pacer employee Joey Qatato identified as the team’s equipment manager was rolling in the Rolls as a passenger when the gunman’s “gat” gauged gunfire gashed both Qatato elbows.

The 48-year-old Qatato was taken to Methodist Hospital, where he was treated and released. Indianapolis police investigation revealed that Tinsley was the target of the rifleman’s bullet volley yet Tinsley was not under any police investigation. After this incident in 2007 then Pacer management led by current New York Knick President Donnie Walsh shut down Tinsley’s season. Yes, the same Donnie Walsh who currently has imposed the same shutdown policy on Tinsley’s fellow Brooklyn born point guard pal Stephon Marbury.

In closing on February 10, 2009 the NBA player’s union filed a grievance on behalf of Jamaal Tinsley. At the time of the filed grievance the union goal was stated thus,” the union wants to force the Pacers to trade, release or buy out his contract” . Tinsley was not traded at the NBA deadline on February 19, 2009 .

The words of NBA Player union chief Billy Hunter will bring down the final curtain. “I’m concerned about any player who might be constructively terminated and or discharged because a team tells him to stay away,” Hunter said during the All-Star Weekend. “I do not know what the outcome of the litigation will be. It can go one of several ways, and we’ve explained that to Jamaal.

“He’s inclined and anxious to roll the dice. We’re concerned about the precedent it might set because more and more guys it might be happening to.”

“If they warehouse him for three years and he can’t play, it pretty much terminates his career. I’m not inclined to stand by and let that happen without some judgment being rendered by some arbiter,” Hunter said.

“The arbiter could very well say Indiana is within its rights, and all it has to do is honor and pay his contract and he has no other remedies.” “Without getting into the intricacies of the law, in some states, there is a principle called good faith and fair dealing,” Hunter said. “I think it might be punishment that goes beyond what they’re entitled to do.”