February 7, 2007


Bill Simmons has named the sports fan syndrome characterized by hoping your favorite team loses games as a way to improve its draft position. In his case it's the Celtics, already losers of 15 in a row, competing for... well, either of the first two slots would be OK...

The beauty of fantanking

....I watch Durant flash an endless array of offensive moves, or Oden put up another double-double with one hand, and it's like monitoring two guaranteed Megabucks tickets. These guys are mortal locks to be franchise players, on the order of LeBron or Yao. We knew Oden would become the best college center since Patrick Ewing, but nobody was prepared for the 6'9" Durant, an unfathomable cross between T-Mac and Plastic Man who can score facing the basket and from 25 feet away. I'm not ashamed to admit I'm in love with him. Platonically, of course.

Either guy would save the Celtics. Barring injury, we'll someday remember the Oden-Durant draft the way we remember the LeBron-Melo-Wade and MJ-Hakeem drafts. You know, assuming they both come out. (Note: For my sanity and overall health, humor me and pretend these guys are definitely entering the 2007 draft. And let's never discuss this again. Thanks.)

Fantanking is old hat in this market. The post-1999 Browns have made a habit of winning a meaningless 16th game to cost them two or three slots in the draft, (which come to think of it hasn't been as painful as watching them miss on the high picks when they've had them.) We suffered though a 17-win season with the Cavs and then held our breath in the LeBron Lottery. Fortunately the NBA fates threw the city a bone, and LeBron stayed home.

Posted by dan at February 7, 2007 2:22 PM