While We’re Waiting… Zydrunas Illgauskas, the wrestler?

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“Are Shaun Livingston and Luke Walton brothers from different mothers? Do they play pick-up ball at the Y together in the summer? They are fun to watch, with tonight including a swooping, underhand windmill assist from Shaun to Luke. Walton returned the favor a few possessions later, setting the table for an easy Livingston finish. Since playing together in Cleveland, the two combine for 192 assists and 60 turnovers.” [Hetrick/Cavs the Blog]


Some theories on why the Cavs struggle coming out of halftime- “Zydrunas Illgauskas has a bizarre ritual where he wrestles the team during halftime to “keep them fresh”. In case you forgot (or are Conrad’s age), Big Z came stateside during the height of Seinfeld’s popularity. In one of the more popular episodes, George Costanza reveals that his family refuses to celebrate Christmas and instead celebrates a holiday of their own creation called Festivus. One of the pillars of the Festivus celebration is the “feat of strength” in which the entire family wrestles the eldest until he is pinned. Big Z, being the eldest Cavalier during the LeBron days and having recently come back to the Cavaliers as assistant general manager, has made the “feat of strength” a cornerstone of his halftime ritual due to his Seinfeld fandom, continuing it to this day. He’s a pretty weird dude. As for that year when Z was in Miami? That was just the team they were playing. Seriously, Christian Eyenga and Manny Harris starting for a professional basketball team? Yikes.” [Benedetti/Fear the Sword]


From the SI archives. Some light reading about former Cavs owner Ted Stepien. “Negotiations between the Kings and Birdsong and his agent, Bob Woolf, began a year ago, with the Kings offering as much as $600,000 a year. But at the end of the playoffs Kansas City withdrew all its previous offers. “We thought that was the fair thing to do,” says Cohen. “If Otis was going to test the waters, he should have to take some risk. We didn’t want him to run to Cleveland and say, ‘I can get $600,000 from K.C., what do you want to give? Even then I thought that no guard was worth what we’d offered him.”

Birdsong and Woolf were angered by the Kings’ move, however, and swam all that much harder through the waters to find a willing fisherman, Cleveland owner Ted Stepien. Stepien’s offer to Birdsong included a base annual salary of at least $800,000, with various incentive clauses that could up the take to $1 million—$50,000 for being named the league’s Most Valuable Player; another $50,000 if the Cavaliers, 28-54 last year, make the playoffs; and a more unusual perk, 50 for each person over 5,000 in attendance at each Cavalier game.” [Cotton/Sports Illustrated]


Interesting. Rawlings (you know, the gold glove people) is going to add an advanced metric component to its annual award– “As part of the multi-year collaboration beginning with the 2013 season, SABR will develop an expanded statistical resource guide that will accompany the Rawlings Gold Glove Award ballots sent to managers and coaches each year. In addition, SABR will immediately establish a new Fielding Research Committee tasked to develop a proprietary new defensive analytic called the SABR Defensive Index™, or SDI™. The SDI will serve as an “apples-to-apples” metric to help determine the best defensive players in baseball exclusively for the Rawlings Gold Glove Award and Rawlings Platinum Glove Award selection processes. The collaboration also installs SABR as the presenting sponsor of the Rawlings Platinum Glove Award.” [Rawlings] (Hat tip: Big League Stew)

  • Vindictive_Pat

    If there is a way to make the Gold Glove a more statistically-determined thing then count me in favor. It’s shameful that Jeter won so many late in his career and it’s absurd that Choo was a finalist last year. It’s called the “Gold Glove”, not the “Gold Arm”.

  • Harv 21

    The prob with these halftime coma theories is that they actually begin with about 4:00 left in the second quarter when the Cavs have a decent lead, and only ease up with the entrance of the second team early fourth quarter.

    I’m watching the kid with the gatorade, cuz there’s something that looks like a medicine dropper lowered on a thin wire from Gilbert’s loge right about then. As Austin Carr would say, “There’s a lottery mole in the hole!”

  • mgbode

    Is this a things we wished never happened day?

    *Ted Stepein
    *2010/2011 NBA season
    *Toronto owns the Cavs (again)

  • BenRM

    I was pretty annoyed by the Cavs last night. Also, can Kyrie put on 15lbs in the offseason, please? I’m tired of seeing him getting beat up.

  • mgbode

    update on the NBA West playoff chase:

    6. Golden State 13.5 GB
    7. Houston 14.5 GB
    8. **** LA Lakers **** 15.5 GB
    9. Utah 16 GB