Rawk the Bawl
Chris Young from the Toronto Star had a great idea to set up brackets for the NHL playoffs based on songs that reference each team, right from Ride the Lightning, down to Neneh Cherry's Buffalo Stance. He then asked his readers to submit their picks for the playoffs based on their musical tastes.
In the comments section, Chris called me out saying "I almost was going to do this for the NBA, then decided to spare people the pain. actually I got a bit busy, and I just don't know hip-hop well enough, outside of the usual suspects. It'd be something -- hey, maybe the Basketball Jones will jump on it. Or Kent". Since my own readers have also called me out for not having enough basketball coverage lately, and it is fundamentally impossible to ignore 2 call outs, I've decide to put my hip hop shoes on and take a stab at it. For my game, though, I have selected Rap/Hip Hop artists who share a home town (or state as needed) with the teams in question. I also don't have deep newspaper pockets, so unlike Chris' NHL brackets, there are no prizes in my game. Submit your picks anyway, though, because if you don't I will make Mike Jones the Rap champion of the world. I have that kind of power.
(1) Detroit D12 - www.d12online.com - These guys are solid right through, except for that white guy that's finally gone (Darco) and that fat guy who doesn't get much playing time (Cato). You see how it relates.
(8) Milwaukee Black House Gang - http://www.myspace.com/blackhouseproductions - One of their guys is call Ebonix. Really. No, really. I figured that gave them about as much chance against D12 as the Bucks actually have.
(2) Miami MA$E - http://www.g-unitmase.com/ - This is the man I single-handily blame for ruining the good name of rap. It was his teaming with puff daddy that brought about singing about having too much, videos just about boobs, and mo' money mo' problems, and brought an end for almost a decade of any kind of hard core rap lyrics in main stream rap, outside of maybe Hed (PE).
(7) Chicago Kanye West - http://kanyewest.com/ - This guy gets enough attention in the media as it is, so I'm not feeding more into it. MA$E against Kanye, it's just like my nightmares.
(3) New Jersey Redman - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Redman - Redman is a classic who needs no intro from me
(6) Indiana Johnny Socko - http://johnnysocko.com/ - I apologize, but that's about as "hard-core" as Indiana gets since Ron Artest left town.
(4) Cleveland Lil Bow Wow - http://lilbowwow.com/ - Hahaha, that guy. And he's up against DMX. Hahaha.
(5) Washington DMX - http://www.nme.com/news/dmx/17307 - I know he's from Maryland, but that's close enough to DC for me. This guy has more years spent in jail than Bow Wow's had in the world. If he doesn't walk away with this one I'm going to be very disappointed in all of you.
(1)San Antonio Mike Jones - http://www.rapdict.org/Mike_Jones - the worst disgrace of a rapper of all time, for the worst disgrace of a basketball player of all time (ie. Manu). Seems fitting.
(8)Sacremento Ron Artest - http://sportsguynorth.blogspot.com/2006/02/dream-son-dream.html - The Kings traded for the Tru Worrier this season, and managed to only slightly improve their ranking in the Rap world. I guess it's because he was spending too much time trying to teach math classes in elementary schools throughout the country, and not enough on his mad lyrics.
(2) Phoenix NastyBoy Klick - http://www.weeklywire.com/ww/10-06-97/tw_mus.html - Read the article in that link, it explains everything.
(7) LA Lakers Run DMC - http://pages.sbcglobal.net/tmoren/rundmc/ - I know that they aren't from LA, but since the Lakers were unable to buy up aging talent to help Kobe this year, I thought I would do it for them in this medium. Lakers fans need some sort of consolation this year.)
(3)Denver Faz Brayke - http://www.purevolume.com/fazbrayke - How could I not pick Faz Brayke for a basketball piece? It just couldn't be done.
(6)LA Clippers Hed (PE) - http://hedtheband.com/ - My personal favourites on this list, depending on the day they can lay out radio hits like Bartender, or slap you with stuff that couldn't dream of mainstream play like Crazy Legs or Amerikan beauty. Sounds fitting for the Clippers to me.
(4) Dallas Chamillionaire - http://www.chamillionaireonline.com/ - Sorry Dallas, but I had to borrow from Houstons hot Rap scene for a lack of any real Dallas presence that I could think of. Chamillionaire may have the all time stupidest Rap name, but he does lay down some mad lyrics, yo.
(5) Memphis Young Buck - http://g-unitworld.com/index.php?id=youngbuck - Always middle of the pack. Not likely to be going anywhere big, but you also know that they're not going away any time soon either. Now it's your turn to guess - was I describing the Grizzlies, or Young Buck? Heck, I'm not even sure.
Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Here is where a real disparity in sports exists. Ron Artest rode his name to a suspension by brushing Ginobli's ugly face with an elbow, an incident that wasn't even a flagrant foul or anything. Denis Gauthier, on the other hand, took Thomas Vanek hard from behind into the boards, in a game that was already decided and out of hand. He got got 5 minutes and a game misconduct on the disgusting play. Was he suspended? Not a chance. What makes it worse is that this was his second such hit in the last month. He was suspended two games last time for his hit from behind on Toronto's Kyle Wellwood, and apparently didn't learn his lesson. From the front office, to the coaching staff, right through to the goons in the lineup, the Philadelphia Flyers have been a classless organization for years, and if they don't start punishing them for their actions it won't ever stop. The league does not need incidents like this in games that are out of control.
After the game, Lindy Ruff said the Flyers were acting like idiots, and I'm not sure there is anyway to argue with that, in their drawing 17 penalties in the course of the game. What did Big Fat ken Hitchcock have to say after the game? He had to have agreed that his group played like idiots, right? He certainly went on the normal coaches tirade about his team taking stupid penalties, and not focusing, and how letting a team beat them 8-1 is unacceptable, etc etc, right? Not the BFK! Instead he thought his team acted suitably, and even commented about Lindy calling them idiots by saying "That's Lindy's opinion," Hitchcock said. "I've seen his teams do the same thing. So he ought not to talk about that."
Maybe I missed something. Can someone share with me when the Sabres have done something like that? It's unbelievable the way the Flyers handle themselves, especially the office staff. They have some great talent on their team, but every year they blow it in the playoffs. The blame usually falls on the goalies, and the main reason for that is that the organization knows nothing about goaltending. When was the last time they had a #1 goalie who was number 1 all year and allowed to build the confidence needed in that position? The reality is that it is NOT the 70's anymore, and you can't go out there in the playoffs like the Broad Street Bullies and expect to be successful. Until someone gets that message into Booby Clarke's head, as talented as the Flyers are they are NEVER going anywhere. If I were a Flyers fan I would be beyond pissed off at this point. They have gone way beyond the realm of anything resembling acceptable