Thursday, May 27, 2010

Trying to make a quarter out of 15 cents

It made all kinds of sense that free agents to-be Dwayne Wade, LeBron James, Joe Johnson and Chris Bosh will parlay regarding their intentions to see if they can and want to hook up for a Super Crew.

Free-agency is the time when players have control of their destiny so why not utilize it to the fullest. I wonder if the players' agents will be in this meeting.

What if the meeting turns into a greed-fest and two guys crossing-out other guys to get what they want. I wonder if this has happened before, but it's sure to happen again.

As an athlete, often you become a piece of meat. Some become amazingly high-paid meat, but nonetheless meat. That means at one point, you can be sliced, cooked and eaten.

As a people, we tend to always focus on those making crazy cash forgetting far more players can struggle to make teams and forge a career with stability and security.

Orlando's Matt Barnes clearly is a guy who has a place in the league, yet he's played with Los Angeles Clippers, Sacramento Kings, Philadelphia 76ers, New York Knicks, Golden State Warriors, Phoenix Suns and the Magic.

Barnes, a dogged defender and big-time team guy, only has been with Golden State for more than one season and those were the 2007 and 2008 campaigns. As you see, he has a place, it just hasn't been the same place.

Barnes, 30, and his lady now have twin boys. The end likely could be closer than the beginning. Barnes says he wants to come back to the Magic and has an option on his contract for next season.

He was paid $1.6 million this past season and becoming a free-agent likely will be his ticket to making considerably more cake in the future. He played in 81 games in 2009-10 and as a starter he and his agent, Aaron Goodwin only figure to come to General Manager looking for a salary upgrade.

Here's a guess Barnes won't be invited to the big-money free-agent summer, but it is players like him who help the big boys win in the post season.

Boston's Kendrick Perkins always is one of the biggest guys on the floor. He's also one of the league's biggest complainers. Virtually every foul he commits has to be the first in his mind. This dude virtually whines about every call.

That being said, Perkins was thrown out of Game Five of the Eastern Conference Finals after receiving two technical fouls. He inadvertently elbowed Orlando's Martin Gortat while trying to grasp teammate Paul Pierce's wrist and help him off the floor.

Perkins' hand slipped and his elbow hit Gortat. The referees missed on that one and so did the league a full day later when it rescinded the second techincal.

Perkins, who entered the game two technicals short of being suspended for the next playoff game, received his second one for spinning around and stomping off after getting called for a personal foul.

If either technical should have stood, it was that one. Players can't get away with stomping and whining all the time, and when a crew with Joe Crawford comes to town, it's time to chill. Everybody knows that. OK, maybe it's everybody, but Perkins. Recognize, young fella'.

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