– Wonderful story over at the D.C. Sports Bog about a surprise appearance by the Washington Wizards’ Caron Butler at a fan’s 16th birthday party. I mean, isn’t this every kid’s dream? (Okay, there are other things post-pubescent teens dream about and wish for, but we’re not going there.) You come home, and sitting there on your couch is an NBA all-star, who chills with you and your friends, gives you an autographed poster and pair of sneaks, and puts Gilbert Areanas on the phone with you as he leaves. Very cool, Caron.
– Utah Jazz rookie forward Paul Millsap tells Hoops Addict in an exclusive interview that he experienced a strong sense of self-doubt on draft day last year (he wasn’t taken until the second round). I think he’s over it now, don’t you?
– Rasheed Wallace, feeling good about Jason Maxiell. Gotta love ‘Sheed.
– Arizona Diamondbacks rookie Mark Reynolds is compared to a prolific steroids gobbler in the best possible way.
– Zydrunas Ilgauskas was asked if teammate Anderson Varejao flops in practice: “We ask him not to do it because he can trip somebody or land on somebody’s foot. Like I said, he goes 100 miles an hour.”
– The first trace of mild criticism over True Hoop’s move to ESPN.
– A nice look at the impact of first-overall picks in the NBA draft, dating back to Patrick Ewing in 1985 for the New York Knickerbockers.
– Denver Nuggets head coach George Karl is insisting that if/when his son, Coby Karl, joins the team this summer and magically becomes a part of the rotation next season, that it won’t just be because he’s his son. Right. Here’s Karl’s unbiased appraisal of Karl, who is recovering from his second operation for thyroid cancer: “The trainers told me Coby was in better shape than anyone else. Our dream has been to be on a team as coach and player. I think he’s a fit for us, and he would give this team some of the things we need.”
– The Flip Saunders obsession by Minnesota sports writers is reaching historic levels. They just won’t give up it up–yet another baseless rumor that Saunders will be rejoined with KG, this time as the Los Angeles Lakers head coach.
– There’s something in the soft drinks in Seattle–Jones Soda, to be exact. Sports fans at Qwest Field will be exclusively sucking down the small company’s beverages for at least the next five years, and we think it’s great. Not often you see David beat down corporate goliaths (Coke and Pepsi) these days, especially when it comes to professional sports. (via Football Outsiders)
– Two homers from Ryan Howard yesterday has Philadelphia Phillies fans psyched.
– Charley Rosen still looking for any opportunity to be down on the Detroit Pistons, saying that it might be too late for the Pistons to play like “legitimate championship contenders” because now that Lebron had one good game, he could be on his way to accomplishing “ruthless and valiant deeds.”
– Finally, two intergalatic luminaries denounce professional baseball: