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I’m as big a fan of Lebron James as anyone. He would make an incredible physical difference on the Mav’s. And the ever unselfish Dirk would gladly play Robin to LBJ’s Batman. And I think that Dallas and Cleveland really are the only two places Lebron would have a chance of winning a championship quickly (with the right added pieces of course). I also believe Dallas actually has the proper pieces to make a quality pitch to James, starting at the top with an owner committed to his team, his players and winning.

But realistically we all have to admit that only one team will get the highly coveted, ultimate prize of the summer. And Bosh (who doesn’t want to come to Dallas anyway – too much home town pressure) seems to be refusing to play Center (the spot he could help Dallas most). I think Wade wants to say, “Bienvenidos a Miami” to another superstar more than anything. So for Dallas the top three FA’s (other than Dallas’ own Dirk) are probably out of the question.

Well then, what’s left? The Mavs have creatively been preparing for this moment in time for a number of years. Cuban, often ripped for spending money on Erick Dampier instead of 2 time MVP Steve Nash was actually making a very special move under all our noses with some creative contract writing. Dampier’s final year at about $13,000,000 was non-guaranteed. This is great for the Mav’s to be able to let him go if he’s declining in his “old age”. But even better, it makes him an incredible trade asset. A team looking to rebuild often needs to create money out of thin air. A great way to do that is with a trade for a non-guaranteed player making a lot of money. That’s exactly what the Mavs have. Often referred to as the DUST chimp (Damp Ultimate Sign and Trade), it is a big piece of what could lead to the Mav’s landing a top-tier free agent, or pulling off a quality trade without losing much in the way of real players. In fact, the team that takes Dampier will almost definitely release him. And the Mavs would love to get back their high quality pick setting center (at a much lesser contract value). Damp knows this will happen and I believe he still wants to be in Dallas.

So all that being said, where does that leave us? With top tier candidates all somewhere else we should do the following. GET AL JEFFERSON from Minnesota AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE! I think Haywood is going to leave this summer. Dampier would make a great backup for a younger, quality center like AJ. For those of you who haven’t paid attention the last few years here are some stats. In the last 3 years Jefferson has averaged better than 20 points and 10 boards. That would definitely make him a top 10 center in the league. I’d put him at more like number 7 or 8 in overall quality. He’s similar in numbers to someone like Chris Kaman. A good player on a bad, bad team. Sure the Mav’s have gotten about 15 pts and 16 rebounds from their tandem at center this past year, but I’d like to see Dallas move away from an aging two headed center. What great team doesn’t have a starting center that plays better than 30 minutes a night? Jefferson, at 25 years young can (and does) do just that! He would immediately be the best center the franchise has ever paid to play and would finally solidify the position.
Al Jefferson to the Mavs?Will Rudy Gay Leave Memphis?

Then lets focus efforts on finding a way to pry a small forward like Rudy Gay away from Michael Heisley at Memphis. He’s got 4 years of pro experience now so he’s worth a shot. And he’s proven himself this past season with 20 points and 6 boards, plus a steal and a half and nearly 50% shooting from 2 point range. Grabbing Rudy would allow us to keep a quality veteran like Marion coming off the bench.

With a starting five of Kidd/Beaubois, Nowitzki, Gay, Beaubois/Terry, Jefferson, knowing Beaubois, Terry or to a lesser extent Kidd would be coming off the bench each night, this would be an incredibly deep, athletic, decently young team (for an old team!!). This gives you a bench made up of the following possible players on any given night: Marion, Beaubois, Terry, Kidd, Dampier, JJ Barea, Dominique Jones, Deshawn Stevenson, Caron Butler and Eddie Najera. It’s my guess we lose at least a couple of those bench guys in trades this summer. But I know Drew Gooden wants to be in Dallas and I’m sure there are plenty of quality veterans who would be willing to come to a stacked team for minimal money.

A good team no doubt. Perhaps not big enough to get past the Lakers with a healthy Bynum and Gasol. But athletic and talented enough to beat just about anyone on any given night. Hopefully all these words are wasted and we’ll be discussing Lebron and someone like Jefferson here in the fall. Who knows? Certainly not me.

I’ve been looking forward to the newest high-performance bowling ball release from Storm for a while now. It’s here, available from your local pro shop or at an online pro shop. In Storm’s Master line, the new Storm Prodigy is just waiting to change your game! The new Centripetal core design weight block was created to allow you to drill the ball with a bunch of different layouts while still getting consistent results from the breakpoint on into the pocket.

Storm Prodigy Bowling Ball

The new Storm Prodigy

Storm tested all kinds of covers with this ball and finally settled on the one that gave them the results they were looking for. The R2X™ Pearl material with E.T.M. (Enhanced Traction Mica) with a 4000-grit Abralon™ finish Storm says you will get a clean glide through the heads without sacrificing control of the midlane. I haven’t bowled with this ball yet, but as long as the promises are true, it sounds good to me! Whether you’re right handed or left, a stroker, tweener or cranker the new Storm Prodigy promises to be a great ball for you. Don’t wait! Be the first of in your league to grab this ball. Then come back here and rate it for me. I want to know what you think of it in the real world.

Oh… and it smells like a blueberry!

Cheap Bowling Ball CloseoutsAre you looking for cheap bowling balls? In this economy, I think anyone interested in bowling is. There are plenty of great places to look but it’s nice to know a site or two where you can find all of the best closeout bowling balls in stock and seriously marked down. My current favorite choices online are and the recently revamped “Closeout Monster” –

Find deals as much as 50% off (sometimes more) on some of the best selling, best performing high-performance bowling balls that have ever been released. A few examples at BowlZilla: Hammer Black Widow Pearl – save 47%; Storm Dimension – save 48%; Roto Grip Illusion – save 57%.

Great deals! It’s a great day to be a bowler.

Hammer Jigsaw Corner Bowling Ball

Hammer Jigsaw Corner

Today let’s consider a bowling ball that’s been out for a while. Released by Hammer during the height of the holidays, I think around mid December of this past year, the Hammer Jigsaw Corner has really proved itself in these last few months. This continues Hammer Bowling’s recent streak of quality products. It’s really been a while since I’ve heard any real complaints about a Hammer ball.

Given the name one would certainly expect this ball to cut the corner sharply and find the pocket even when you roll a bit outside of your intended path. By customer reviews, it appears that’s exactly what this ball does. It’s definitely able to take on the heaviest of oil on the lanes. The descriptions of users often personify the ball and give it a mind of its own! The ball has been described as “wanting nothing more than to smash the pins”. The way people are talking, I’m picturing it not just correcting from a board or two off. I’m getting a visual of it jumping up out of the gutter! Of course I’m laughing as I say that. But it seems to be the case that bowler after bowler gets the same result. Throw it where you want meant to or accidentally throw it off a bit, the ball still cuts throw and finds the pocket. It seems it’s difficult not to get at least 9 pins and splits rarely happen with the incredible pin action the Jigsaw Corner gives you.

The secret is Hammer’s combo of the same “Jigsaw” core from the original Hammer Jigsaw and the new Quick Corner 5/4 cover stock. The new cover allows it to roll longer than the original Jigsaw. And then it has a much sharper cut for much more aggressive back end than the original. So you can take your pick. With the first Jigsaw, you can roll longer and you have to be more accurate. Or you can go with the newer, more forgiving Hammer Jigsaw Corner.

As always, if you’re rolling this ball at your local house or if you’ve gotten to test it out somewhere, give me a shout. Let me know about its real world performance, whether it upped your score, etc. Let me know if it’s really as forgiving as everyone says it is.

Until next time…

Well the Mavericks’ streak of holding teams under 100 points in regulation was broken last night at eight. True it only happened because of a 3 point prayer thrown up by the surprisingly good rookie point guard Darren Collison at the buzzer. The New Orleans Hornets were able to grab a hundred points exactly. The fact that Dallas only won be eight points though is the real story here.

The Mavericks led by as many as 25 in the first half and 19 at halftime. It seemed like J Kidd and his bandits were able to make something happen on both ends of the court throughout the first two frames. They were truly just bowling down the lane and pickup up points in the paint like nobody’s business. The ball seemed to be half the size of the net for 24 minutes of play. Apparently complacency set in during Carlisle’s half-time talk or maybe a few players took a nap. The Hornets came out to play ball in the second half and it seemed like Dallas was already on the plane. Their play was so sloppy at points that it didn’t resemble anything the team has done the last couple of weeks since the blockbuster trade that brought us Butler, Haywood and Stevenson for Howard, Gooden, Ross and change. So on the first night of one of the toughest back to backs this season, the veteran starters didn’t quite get the rest they had hoped for. Kidd, Nowitzki, Haywood, Butler and Terry all had to play pretty heavy minutes in the second half just to hold on and win it.

It really didn’t look pretty as my finger nails started to pile up on the floor until the last few minutes when Dallas put down the hammer and went for the kill. Truly this was Brendan Haywood’s worst game in Dallas. He still had 12 points, nine boards, 2 blocks, 2 steals and 0 turnovers. Funny thing is both blocked shots came on the same defensive possession near the end of the fourth quarter giving the Mav’s a stop when they desperately needed one. Caron Butler found his stroke and looked good in the game with 19 points 5 rebounds and 4 steals, one of which was a clutch play to really help us seal the deal.

So in the end, some good things happened to start the game, but the team’s focus was tested in the second half. it wasn’t a great game overall but Dirk, Kidd and the boys showed grit in pulling it out and having the higher score when the final buzzer sounded. Again it wasn’t pretty, but a win is a win. On to Charlotte tonight. Hopefully they can make it eight in a row!

Ebonite Mission Bowling Balls

Ebonite Mission Bowling Ball

Well, the initial reviews are in. Everyone is talking about the new Ebonite Mission bowling ball. I’ve even heard it’s the best ball Ebonite has produced in years. It’s getting big time reviews at bowling centers and around the web. Check customer reviews for yourself. You’ll see pretty consistent 4 and 5 star reviews. Ebonite has done more testing on this ball than on any other high performance bowling ball they’ve ever put out. That’s right. Ebonite is getting serious and they’re working hard to gain their status back as the best in bowling. Their Hammer balls have been the more highly rated products for the past couple of years, and Storm bowling balls and Roto Grip bowling balls have definitely been better performing for a while. But it looks like Ebonite is really making strides now to bring their main line of products up to par with the best performers in the game. The bowling industry could always use a bit more competition for the highest quality, best performing, most innovative products.

So I’m definitely glad to see the “Big Cat” of bowling finally choosing to step it up again. It brings back memories of Ebonite’s glory days! Anyone else thinking about the Matrix, Vortex and Apex lines of Ebonite balls? Good products. And good to see something along those lines from Ebonite again. If you’ve bowled with the new Mission from Ebonite, let me know what you think about it. I always like to here other people’s opinions!

Storm Invasion Bowling Ball

Storm Invasion Bowling Ball

Every bowling ball manufacturer says every new line of ball has new features that are the “next big thing”, the “latest advancements”. Well, it truly appears Storm Bowling has captured the next big thing with the new Storm Invasion bowling ball. Featuring the R3X Solid Reactive cover stock and a new style of asymmetrical core design, this ball truly is different than any other bowling ball out there today. I’ve got to hand it to Storm on this one. The Storm Invasion gives you a really hard, powerful but controllable hook. It’s got a very defined, sharp turn at the break point.

So, all the cliches fit with this ball. It truly is a “pin killer”! The customer reviews on this ball are just incredible. We’re talking 4.9 out of 5 stars! I haven’t seen a single bad review on this ball. Not a single bad comment from someone who’s purchased it. Wait… I forgot, one guy said it smelled bad! But Storm’s known for the fruity scents they add to all of their bowling balls. I believe this one is supposed to be mulberry. As strange as that may be, Storm bowling balls do always get my attention. I can’t really think of any other purpose the smell would serve than that.

Like the smell or not, the Storm Invasion is definitely a winner. It’s back end reaction is what everyone’s going wild over. If you try one out, I think you will too! If you’ve got a Storm Invasion, leave me some comments to let me know what you think about it. I’d love to hear your experiences.

Is he my new favorite player? Probably not. But he’s definitely a breath of fresh air in Dallas. Erick Dampier really is a very good center. Yeah, he’s overpaid, but he really is a very good defensive center. His main problem is he’s not exactly a spring chicken. Still, before his rash of recent injuries, he was really anchoring the Maverick’s excellent defense this season. Now he’s hurt though… again. Luckily, the Mavericks maid an excellent trade a few days before the deadline.

Brendan Haywood : Dallas Mavericks

Brendan Haywood : Dallas Mavericks

Enter Brendan Haywood. I honestly had no clue who he was two weeks ago. And he was not even the headliner in our trade. Now, he’s definitely making his presence known. His rebounding and blocked shots are what we need out of a center. His scoring is just icing. Monday against the Pacers he had 13 points, 20 rebounds and 3 blocked shots. Now the 20 boards tied a career high, so that’s not exactly typical, but he’s averaging (off the top of my head) something like 12 points, 12 boards and 3 blocked shots in his first 5 games in Dallas. Not exactly Dwight Howard numbers, but he’s consistently good. He’s a constant big, active, highly mobile presence in the paint. He says he really likes our unselfish style of play and that it fits him well. Ya think?

If he keeps this up, I’m going to get spoiled and Mav fans are going to start expecting real quality basketball from a big man all the time. That’s something we’ve just learned to live without over the years. After one game I figured it was just a fluke. Now I’m pretty sure I was wrong. I think the Mavs will re-sign him this summer. At least I hope they do. And I hope he’s a big part of this team for years to come.

funny golf t-shirt

I know I already posted a funny t-shirt this week but I had to post this new one as well. I know you’ve got the picture to the right, but it’s a bit small and doesn’t really quite do it justice so I’ll describe the shirt anyway. It’s got a golf caddy standing with a golf bag in front of a green. He says, “I’m so tired of all the caddy remarks!” I just thought it was pretty funny myself! In fact, I may even order this one and wear it instead of just talking about it. So, if you have a golfer in your life or just someone who likes funny t-shirts, check out this funny golf t-shirt at Very Funny T-Shirts today.