In reading the blog post of my contemporary, Mr. LaiHing, I was presented with many valid points, and agreed with much of what I read.
1. Stephon Marbury, statistically, IS one of the greatest point guards of all time. Yup, it's true...but statistically, ok? Don't think I'm crazy.
2. I fall somewhere between the media and Steven on this one. While he isn't the villain he has been portrayed to be... well, he still said this:
"'From what I've seen, he allowed Steve Nash to dribble the ball for 22 seconds,' Marbury said. ‘He allows guys to shoot coming down on the break, one-on-three. For me, I like that style of basketball.'"
Again, I agree that the media has blown him up to be this big-time cancer, when in reality he is one semi-drunk talk show appearance and one playoff run from being a healthier version of...Baron Davis.
3. NO WAY should he give the Knicks money back. Even if Steph isn't the smartest, classiest guy, the Knicks organization definitely hasn't taken the high road in this matter either. If you are throwing a guy away after your disgust eventually became mutual, that still is not grounds for him to take a pay cut, especially considering he has cleaned up his act and behaved as you would have wanted.
4. Ok, I'm talking too long. I totally agree--D'antoni gave Marbury NO opportunity to play, even though he was poised to have a great season because of his preparation and physical condition. Oh well...
5. Aaaaaaaand let the disagreeing begin! LOL
Marbury has done a good thing with his Starbury line, and he did do well to maintain a low profile off the court for many years...but come on. COME ON! He's a known headcase, and his behavior has in 2 particular instances been in conjunction with the worst opinions thought of the NBA.
In Minnesota, even at a young age, he let his envy of Kevin Garnett's big paycheck push him out of town. He wounded a franchise, not for aspiration of championships, or even substantially bigger paychecks--but just for pride. Sometimes NBA players are seen as overpaid and self-absorbed, and for the most part wholly unfairly. But Steph was one of the players (along with Latrell "I gotta feed my kids" Sprewell, lol) who helped perpetuate that myth.
And of course, in the Anucha Brown-Sanders case... let's just not discuss any details. Again, off-the-court Steph was NOT leaving the public with the best image of the NBA.
I didn't really google around and see if any other situations had arisen, and that's really not my goal. I'm not trying to bury the man. And I don't think he deserves being punished in this riduculous way this season either. I just know that he has definitely had and caused issues on a number of his teams...which explains why he made it to team #4, the Knicks, anyway.
6. I believe that Marbury will NOT have an instant impact...UNLESS...he signs with the New Orleans Hornets. Seriously. No other team either needs the skills he can offer, or afford the let-down in chemistry. Spurs? He'd be in the way of solid rookie George Hill. Mavs? Two words: Jason-Terry. Suns? Barbosa. Out east? The Nets, Cavs, Celtics, Magic, and Pistons all have scoring off the bench. The Raptors should just avoid messing up chemistry...they have enough problems to deal with already (We'll miss you, Sam!).
The Hornets need scoring off of their bench in the worst way, and Marbury is, at worst, better than Jannero Pargo (their 6th man last year). So he should go there, or...be square.
So I do agree with the better part of what Steven was saying. I think we mainly disagree on who Stephon is as a person and how valuable he is as a player right now. I don't think he's a model citizen, but that's why I actually do applaud him for handling this situation as best he can. I understand his desire to keep his entire paycheck, and I don't see any reason for him to fight for anything less. Heck, if I went through the last few seasons he has experienced as a New York Knickerbocker, I might've tried to sue for double.
But honestly, I had a different view of this entire situation until yesterday, when I heard an ESPN analyst discussing Plaxico Burress. Plaxico is potentially headed to serve 3 1/2 - 15 years in prison for a felony gun charge. The media has done everything but place a dunce cap on his head and label him with politically incorrect characterizations. They've at least stayed politically correct with their insults.
Apparently, from ESPN analyst's belief, Plaxico has not been the same since the loss of his mother in 2002. His loss doesn't excuse his behavior, but it does help remind us that the guy IS human, and that no person should be treated like scum for their decisions.
In a way, Steph should be grateful for where he is--in a league with guaranteed money. And the Knicks should be equally grateful--at least the player they're eventually gonna lost isn't one they had hoped to keep.
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