May 18, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder small forward Kevin Durant (35) speaks with guard James Harden (13) against the Los Angeles Lakers during the first half of game three of the Western Conference semifinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE
The first ever SB Nation Kansas City mailbag begins today as Ed answers questions about the Oklahoma City Thunder, a woman who would ruin his job and his (lack) of worry about the Oklahoma Sooners versus the Kansas State Wildcats.
This is a real text message conversation between a lady friend of mine and yours truly, Ed The Sports Fan, a few days ago.
Random Lady Friend: Hey! I have a fantasy football question for you.
Ed: Okay, I charge $1.99/minute. LOL (Sometimes you gotta use the LOL when you're dead serious or you don't want to be totally rude and come off like a jerk. This is one of those times.)
Random Lady Friend: Ummmm.....okay. Should I keep Stephen Hill on my team? If I let him go, who else should I get? I also have Wes Welker, Dwyane Bowe and Greg Jennings. I'm thinking about dropping Jason Witten too...
(Pause for the cause. One. This is the most impossible question to answer. I don't know the rules of the league, I don't know who's in the free agent pool, and most importantly....no one cares about your fantasy football team. Two. Who in hades decides to draft Stephen Hill in the first place? I digress.)
Ed: I have no clue. Keep Welker, Bowe and Jennings. Just go to the top of the free agent pool and get the best wide receiver available. Definitely keep Witten.
Random Lady Friend: Thanks for being no help at all.
Ed: What? LOL...this is my help. Why did you decide to ask me? (This "LOL" was more for me. Because I lowkey wanted to either cuss her out or just stop responding.)
Random Lady Friend: Because you're "Ed The Sports Fan." Duh. Are you sure about Witten?
Ed: Yes, I'm sure. I'm Ed The Sports Fan, b[text redacted].
This is the mailbag of Ed, where I take your questions and try to give you a semi-credible answer in return. Want to send in your questions? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Lets get to it.
Why is Kendrick Perkins allowed to make a gazillion dollars, stand in the way of the Thunder potentially re-signing James Harden, play with knees older than California Redwoods and still be praised by his head coach? -- Matt C.
Kendrick Perkins is 27 years old and the 2012-13 season will mark his 10th year of tenure in the NBA. You read that correctly. (I got this from the Wikipedia, the most trusted resource database ever.) This is unbelievable to me. However, to answer the question, Perkins became indispensable first when Andrew Bynum emerged for the Los Angeles Lakers, and for the long-term future because of Dwight Howard's move to said Lakers.
Perkins is the best low-post defender in the NBA not named Howard or Bynum, and he defends those two phenomenally because he takes away all their space. Plus, he's totally unafraid. So is he worth paying $9 million a year where he's best utilized against on team in particular just four times in the regular season? Yes.
its not about the regular season, its about the post season. The Lakers aren't going anywhere in the Western Conference elite, and Perk's now become a necessity more than ever.
Realistically, can we say - barring injury - Kevin Durant will probably be the NBA scoring champ for the next 5-7 seasons? -- Justin P.
Yes. For a couple of reasons.
Kobe Bryant, Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James were the three biggest threats to challenge KD for the scoring title. Kobe's getting older and received more help on the roster with Dwight, Carmelo just doesn't get the same amount of touches in New York as he used to in Denver, and LeBron's desire to facilitate has dropped his scoring down a tad.
However, I think there is one threat that could challenge KD in Kevin Love. Love finished 4th last year with a 26.0 PPG (!!!) average. Seriously, I looked it up. Now remember that he did that in a shortened schedule without the services of Ricky Rubio for half the season. Plus he got that experience being on the olympic team and more rest between off days? Getting 30 and 15 for Love isn't out the question, at all.
What's the statistical ceiling of James Harden if he was the focal point of an offense? -- Conner M.
Because Harden has a willingness to share the ball so much, I can't see him challenging to be a league leader. However, from a usage/output standpoint he reminds me of what Joe Johnson could do when Mike Woodson allowed him to play point guard from time to time. You know, like haters of Russell Westbrook want Harden to be?
Joe Jeezy put up three seasons where he averaged 5+ assists/game in Atlanta. In those seasons he averaged 21 points, 6 assists and 4 rebounds. If Harden leaves, that's be my expected output.
Could you imagine trying to replace what Harden brings to the table with OKC now? I spoke on this earlier in the week, but its going to take some creative doing by Sam Presti. Its not going to be easy.
Recently, Eva Longoria confirmed that she was in a relationship with New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez. Then Sanchez went two hours without a completion in his last game. What woman would ruin you at your job? -- Maria M.
Complex question, simple answer. Let me introduce you to Sunny Anderson. Probably in my top five of women I'd drop everything for and wife up list.
Let me explain something about my desires in a woman. Don't let me, being a sports fan, confuse you. As much as I love sports, having a woman that loves sports on my "want" list isn't all that high. In fact, its like getting ice cream with the sprinkles. Ice cream alone is delicious. The cherry on top? Beautiful. Fudge? Even better. Sprinkles? Dope, but I'd rather have the previous three first.
Why Sunny? Because the woman is fine, shapely, can cook her ass off, has an appreciation for music and seems like she'd be down for the Sports Fan's cause. Plus, the woman is fine and can cook her ass off. Ice cream. Cherry. Done.
In short, I'd never leave the house and my writing would suffer. My beard would scare little children and the sun would hurt my eyes. I'd have to quit my job instantly. Next question. (Hi Sunny.)
Everyone's up in arms about the Lakers and admirably so. But doesn't OKC still matchup up almost perfectly with LA? -- Paul J.
Plus, Serge Ibaka improved greatly in guarding Pau Gasol and Thabo Sefolosha did yeoman's work in defending Kobe Bryant, it'll be interesting to see how the depth of the Thunder matches up with the Lakers. Antawn Jamison was a big add for the Lakers and will surely draw the defensive assignment of Durant. Not that his defense will matter much. Lets just fast-forward to the regular season and go right to the West Finals now.
You're from Oklahoma, so are you a blind zombie and to Bob Stoops and his ability in "big games"? Oh, and K-State will beat OU on Saturday night. -- Bill R.
Oh, so you found me out huh? I'll keep this short and sweet.
Bob Stoops does not deserve the benefit of the doubt anymore from Sooners fans or the rest of college football nation. The Sooners running game has been supremely suspect in recent years and I'm still concerned with our defense, even if Mike Stoops has returned from screaming at everybody in Tucson.
But....I'm not worried about Kansas State. Can Collin Klein throw the ball now? No? Oh ok. Sooners roll by 30. Easy money.