Replacing Kobe


The National Basketball Association has yet to name an All-Star replacement for Kobe Bryant and his injured knee. The league has given no timeline for when the decision will be made, so aside from knowing it’ll come, you know, prior to tipoff, there’s no telling when we’ll know who we’ll get to see in a West jersey in New Orleans come February 16th.

There’s a host of dudes it might be. Anthony Davis, The NO’s newest and soon to be favorite son, with all his arms and all his potential, may grab the spot so the hometown fans can have a player to throw their weight behind. He also probably deserves it. When he hasn’t been hurt he’s been terrifying and if he played the whole first half of the season like, say, Aldridge, we the basketball collective might be running to crown him the best Power Forward in the league already. He shouldn’t be the replacement, though.

There’s Serge Ibaka, the rim protecting nuclear gazelle of a man who looks at 17 footers with wide, thankful, and loving eyes. He’s still one of the best shot blockers in the league and his on-ball defense is hugely improved, but few care to notice because it’s easier to dismiss someone as a one trick defensive pony. Anybody hanging onto the narrative that he couldn’t produce without Westbrook out there getting him clean looks kind of looks awfully dumb right now and he’s been the second best player on a team that’s currently at the top of the very wild Western Conference. He shouldn’t be the replacement, though.

Dragic deserves love. So, too, does Mike Conley. Boogs is having a great season. Still, none of them should be the replacement.

If All Star weekend is about celebrating and entertaining the fans, then let’s do something that turns heads. Put Obama in the game.

I know he’s probably busy right now. I get that. I know some of y’all aren’t cool with him. I get that. Political allegiances/opinions aside, though, tell me having him in the game wouldn’t make it about 1,000 times more fun. The guy’s relationship with basketball has been well documented so I’d imagine details aren’t at all necessary. You probably know he played in high school. You probably know he regularly gets together with Senators and the like to get some run in. You probably know he shows up court-side at NBA and college games every so often. You probably know he’s a Mike Red type, a lefty that fancies himself a jump shooter. Well, Red didn’t fancy that. He just was exactly that: a silky, velvety jump shooter. If we’re talking a lefty someone that fancies themselves a jump shooter, then I should call him a Josh Smith type. Just, you know, without any of the athleticism. I mean, he came up in Hawaii. It gets no further West than that.

Imagine, for a minute.

Chris Paul penetrates and kicks to a wide open Obama and he has to get the shot off with Paul George closing out and contesting quick, fast, and in a hurry. Steph trying to recreate some of the Splash Brothers magic with him. Him trying to rotate over and draw a charge on LeBron, only to have Bron yam on him. Let Reggie Love sit on the bench with him to dole out in-game advice every so often and let’s make this happen.

Adam Silver needs a first moment where he shows the league and the fans that he’s in charge now. This could be that moment. Take charge, Mr. Commissioner. Give the people something the Rock N Jock game never could: a president.

An aside: No clue what Tobey Maguire is horrified of in that picture above but that tank top is wearing him out. 

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