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News » Mayo needs to show more passion 2009-01-29

Mayo needs to show more passion 2009-01-29

Mayo needs to show more passion 2009-01-29

Game time: Thunder 114, Grizzlies 102 OT

The next rookie to be scrutinized is O.J. Mayo, the third pick in last June's draft.

Here are the particulars:

Thursday's action

  • Howard, Magic top LeBron, Cavs
  • Spurs' stars shine against Suns analysis

  • Rosen: Magic won't disappear
  • Rosen: Mayo plays it too cool
  • Hill: Blockbusters that backfired
  • Galinsky: NBA Power Rankings


  • Hill: Who were All-Star snubs?
  • Hill: Pistons have problems
  • Hill: Odd team out in West


  • Eastern Conference All-Stars
  • Western Conference All-Stars

JERMAINE O'NEAL has been playing on fumes for several years now. One outstanding performance every two weeks or so only masks the disintegration of both his game and his motivation.

DIRK NOWITZKI is still, and will always be, a choker.

EMEKA OKAFOR's modus operandi goes something like this: The worse the competition, the better he plays. And vice versa.

AMARE STOUDEMIRE wants every offensive play to begin and end with him. Getting him to practice hard and to play aggressive defense on more than a handful of sequences every game is more fruitless than trying to bring peace to the Middle East.

RASHEED WALLACE has a permanent place on my underachieving lists. Why am I so constantly on his case? Because he's arguably the most talented power forward in the league, but hasn't played all-out since the Pistons won the championship in 2004. And even in the Finals versus the Lakers, Wallace was wimped by Karl Malone and didn't become aggressive until the Mailman was injured and he was matched up against Luke Walton. Hall of Fame talents mostly wasted.

Travels with Charley

Every NBA veteran who wound up in the CBA always had a glow about him. If the guy was good enough to play in "The League," then he would certainly be a star in the Crazy Basketball Association.



Here are some players who lasted for at least one full season in the NBA yet were busts in the CBA: Alaa Abdelnaby, Marvin Barnes, Corey Blackwell, Mario Bennett, Gerald Brown, Derrick Chievous, Russell Cross, Yinka Dare, Fennis Dembo, John Duran, Jerry Eaves, Chris Garner, Reggie Geary, Grant Gondrezick, Mike Green, Peter Gudmunsson, Alfrederick Hughes, Ozell Jones, Sidney Lowe, David Magley, Anthony Miller, Ron Moore, Martin Nessley, Ivano Newbill, Tom Payne, Mark Radford, Wally Rank, Chris Robinson, Doug Roth, Shawnelle Scott, God Shammgod, Charles Smith IV, Marvin Webster and DeJuan Wheat.

Why was this so?

Because, back in the day, the CBA was much better than the D-League is today. Also, guys who rarely played during their NBA stints had to play 35 minutes or more in the CBA — so all of their flaws were magnified. Some NBA vets couldn't get used to the traveling. Instead of charters, there were 6 a.m. flights out of Wichita Falls, then two more connecting flights before getting into La Crosse an hour before game time. Or else the 10-plus-hour bus rides. Not to mention the ornery refs, shabby motels and fast-food meals.

Anybody could play in the NBA, but it took a die-hard hooper to succeed in the CBA.

Author: Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: January 29, 2009


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