Giving Thanks

Some of our writers gathered ’round the table to talk about what they are most thankful for this Thanksgiving. 



JD & The Straight Shot To Knick Hearts

By: Tyler Parker

I’m thankful for the New York Knickerbockers owner and president and chief executive of Cablevision, James Dolan.

The lead singer and the “JD” of JD & The Straight Shot, Dolan sings like the guy who’s going to do the Special Music in church on Sunday morning – the one who the music minister never lets sing but now, since his grandkids are in town or something, can’t tell him no. He’ll wear a Christmas sweater of some kind, because it’s going to be around Christmas, and he’ll sing “His Eye Is On The Sparrow” and it’ll be rough but people will smile through it because it’s clear he’s having a good time and he thinks it sounds good.

Either that, or he sings like the guy who refuses to let other people have a good time during karaoke because he’s treating it like an American Idol audition – up there in a suit trying to Henley out to “Peaceful Easy Feeling” as well as he possibly can. People in the back getting obliterated waiting for their chance to take a drunken turn at Outkast’s “B.O.B.” He’s the guy who walks off the stage and saunters proudly over to his vodka tonic and gets told by a big guy with very fixed hair in a real shiny shirt from Express that nobody wants to hear someone actually try to sing beautifully up there.

Enough people with better words than mine have talked about Dolan’s music. Someone went ether on the band’s Wikipedia page and properly renamed some of his songs. The new names are fantastic – “Gonna Kill That Dog and That Dog Is Ball Movement”, “What Do We Do Now, Quick Trade All Our Draft Picks”, etc. It’s inspired work. Someone’s since taken a majority of the edits down, sadly. Course, people could spend ten whole years trying to think of perfect names for Dolan songs and they’d do no better than the sixth track of JD & The Straight Shot’s 2010 EP. That song is titled “Fall From Grace.”

They all see what you’ve done

See the shame on your face

Look at what you’ve become

Smiling at your fall from grace


The Big List

By: Chandler Goodman

A list of things I’m thankful for: Kyrie Irving’s ball handling skills, late night Warriors games,  Parks & Recreation’s creative partnership with the Pacers, every time someone makes a joke on NBATV and it’s obvious that Dennis Scott is the only one that didn’t quite get it, the Rubio/Love connection, Ray Allen down by 3 with less than a minute left, JR Smith with 19 seconds left on the shot clock, DeAndre Jordan experimenting with post moves like a toddler trying to walk, every time Steve Kerr tells a story from his childhood on Open Court and everyone else on the set looks at him like he’s an alien, everything else about Open Court, Ernie Johnson, the Jalen/Jacoby connection, Kobe Bryant making me believe that maybe Faustian bargains are real, Cleveland Cavs local color commentator Austin Carr’s plethora of catch phrases (such as “GET THAT WEAK STUFF OUTTA HERE”), the basketball blogosphere, Jason Gallagher, and, most importantly, David Stern



By: Colt Westbrook

This season, I’m thankful for wispy, light, and delicate blessings that are so fragile, we must handle them with extreme care; like a newborn Labrador pub, a bottle of fluorescent sand art, the most beautiful dew-kissed spider’s web, and Derrick Rose’s body.


This Jermaine O’Neal Interview

By: Jason Gallagher

There is no joking around here.  When I saw this video on  Grantland (via Reddit) I went into it thinking I would sit back and have myself a good chuckle.  I don’t know why, but when someone tells me to watch a Jermaine O’Neal interview, I immediately assume it’ll be pretty funny.  NO SIR.  The moment O’Neal opens his mouth to let out a flood of positivity, I found myself evaluating everything.  Who am I?  What am I?  Where am I?  All of these questions I could not answer.  So I took a long walk.  I carried on conversations with strangers – men, women, and children alike.  I was yelled at by parents who saw me talking to their children. Such a reflective experience.  This life affirming postgame interview from a regular season game against the Pelicans will be a nice reminder to hug everyone (including yourself) this Thanksgiving.  Thank you, Jermaine.


Happy Thanksgiving

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