Cliff Gardner

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Top 20 NBA Salaries:

1. Kevin Garnett (Boston) $24,751,934 --About right...SLIGHTLY too much, but worth it to keep him happy. Unless he has a stroke during a Tuesday game against the Grizzlies. Then it's a bad deal.

2t. Jason Kidd (Dallas) $21,372,000--Maybe ten years ago...wait, that's about when this deal was signed. Ouch. Maybe he can get his gold medal back from that Casino in vegas and sell it for a new pair of legs.

2t. Jermaine O'Neal (Toronto) $21,372,000--max money for a bench player who acts like he's 12 because that's when people stopped holding him accountable for any decision he made? Ouch.

4. Kobe Bryant (L.A. Lakers) $21,262,500--Not enough. Mamba!

5. Shaquille O'Neal (Phoenix) $21,000,000--Does he make that on his days off? Does this cover the cement they coat his legs with before each home game? I get that he's playing better this year, but this was still a stupid deal for Miami to give him after they won the title considering how he played in the playoffs.

6t. Allen Iverson (Detroit) $20,840,625--About 10 mill too high. Enjoy Charlotte next year, AI.

6t. Stephon Marbury (New York) $20,840,625--Mike D can now light himself on fire while jerking-off to game footage of Derrick Rose.

8. Tim Duncan (San Antonio) $20,598,704--He's there only good player now--and their only hope to stay in it while their whole fucking roster is injured--so it's about right. BRING BACK BIG SHOT ROB!

9. Tracy McGrady (Houston) $20,370,437--T-MAC! The Rockets don't win without him in the playoffs, so probably worth it, even though he's always hurt.

10. Ray Allen (Boston) $18,388,430--About 2-3 mill too high. Here's an idea--convince him to film a "He Got Game" sequel this summer to make up what he'll lose in his new contract!

11. Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas) $18,077,904--Look, he's GOOD. And he'll probably never win a ring unless it's the "Mitch Richmond jumping on the Lakers at the end of his career" type deal. Sad.

12. Paul Pierce (Boston) $18,077,903--He's playing like he wants to be known as the best in the league, and while that's debatable, guys with that attitude deserve this kind of money.

13. Shawn Marion (Miami) $17,810,000--This guy will end up being involved with more teams than Larry Brown before all's said and done. He's just good enough to help you and just bad enough to keep you from winning it all (unless of course he was playing in the perfect system for him that strongly emphasized his strengths. Sorry Suns fans).

14. Rashard Lewis (Orlando) $16,447,871--Wait, lil-bow-wow plays for the Magic?

15. Michael Redd (Milwaukee) $15,780,000--You know that girl who dates that total jerk off for years and seems completely oblivious to how shitty the situation is? That's Michael Redd in Milwaukee.

16t. Pau Gasol (L.A. Lakers) $15,106,000--About right--maybe a little to low considering that the Lakers don't win a title without good playoff games from him. Still, the neck beard makes this salary appropriate.

16t. Andrei Kirilenko (Utah) $15,106,000--The Jazz will lose Boozer to free agency and will trade AK-47 for one of those Brevin Knight-Emeka Okafor deals that makes everyone cringe. Mark my words--the Jazz are on the way out and Williams will be the next Jason Kidd in 5 years.

18t. Amare Stoudemire (Pho.) $15,070,550--About right. As much as he wants to prove to everyone that he's the best player ever, and while I agree he has that potential, he hasn't done it yet. Until he gets there, this is about right.

18t. Yao Ming (Houston) $15,070,550. I watched a really good Rockets-Wizards game the other night, and Yao just dominated down the stretch in the post with a few big boards and monster dunks. People forget that he's actually really good--a great passer and solid shooter. While his d is suspect, he still gives you more than he takes away. This is right for him.

20. Mike Bibby (Atlanta) $14,983,600. Atlanta needs leadership and he was the only one on those early-2000's Kings teams that had any heart at all. I like him in Atlanta. While that team won't win a playoff series, they're still a little dangerous because of what Joe Johnson can do, and Bibby adds one more weapon for them.

Those were the top 20 Salaries. These guys need to be making more money, though:

1) Brandon Roy (Portland) $3,084,240. If he's your best player, you CAN win a title. That deserves max-money in my book.

2) LaMarcus Aldridge (Portland) $4,631,400. The Blazers are only as good as LaMarcus. If he gives the Blazers 20-10, they're VERY tough to beat. If he stinks like he did last week againt Golden State (4 pts, 4 rbs, 6 pf), we lose. He deserves mid-level money, probably 5-6 years and 45-50 million.

3) Rudy Fernandez (Portland) $1,084,080. He's been the 2nd best guy on the team this year and has the potential to be an all-star, even in the west, even off the bench. Right now he's either 1-2 in the Rookie of the Year voting. Honestly, when has a european import had this big of an impact this soon? It took Dirk 4-5 years to become a factor in every Mavs game. Rudy deserves about the same as LaMarcus depending on how this season goes, especially playoffs, beacuse if he lights up our first round team like he did Team USA in the gold medal game, the guy deserves max money and the key to the city.

Guys who make just the right amount of money:

1) Travis Outlaw (Portland) $4,000,000. He was the 11-12 guy on our roster for about 4 years, and since then he's molded himself into a great 3-pt shooter and legitimate defender. Still, until he proves he can do it for a whole season, this is about right.

2) Greg Oden (Portland) $5,011,680. Before he came to Portland, we were giving up 99 points a game, and since his return, we're giving up around 90. If he can stay healthy, and avoid getting stupid ticky-tac fouls, he could be the all-star everyone originally thought.

3) Joel Przybilla (Portland) $6,310,150. Yes, he should make more money than Oden, at least for now. He plays hard every night and is a BEAST on the boards. I've always liked him.

Guys who make too much money:

1) Jerryd Bayliss (Portland) $1,993,560. He tends to make bad decisions, but he is a rookie. I like Blake and Sergio more than him, though, and I think he has a "I'm mad about not getting minutes, TRADE ME" and then going someplace and being a decent back-up guard written all over him.

2) Martell Webster (Portland) $3,771,133. He's been out all year and no one's missed him since Outlaw and Batum are clearly better. Every trade machine scenerio I play with involves getting rid of him.

3) Ike Diogu (Portland) $2,912,823. He's our third-string center and he only plays in garbage time. When he plays, he's ok--he was great against Chicago, for example--but the guys ahead of him are better. Again, a good part of a trade package.

Guys who make so much money that Paul Allen should push them down a flight of stairs just to get them off our cap:

1) Raef LaFrentz (Portland): $12,722,500. Yes, that's right. Raef makes more than double what anyone else on our whole fucking roster makes. And he hasn't, to my knowledge, played a minute all season. I love Kevin Pritchard, but this one is just inexcusable.

So, my concerns for the Blazers are basically two-fold:

1) Someone will offer LaMarcus, Rudy, Oden and maybe Outlaw much more money than they should get. Like, the Clippers could offer Rudy a max deal, or the Warriors could over-bid on LaMarcus because they need size, etc. That would really hurt us because we need all those guys to stay good and we can't afford to offer all of them max-money. Roy should get max money, but if EVERYONE demands it, then we can't make a serious run at Lebron/Bosh/Nash/Dirk--though I'm not saying all those guys would work for us, just that we need cap room/flexibility.

2) The Kings or some asshole club will sign Darius Miles, the Portland Trailblazers version of herpes that just won't go away, to play 2-minutes/game for the last 10 games of the year just so he stays on our cap and we have to pay him for this season (9 million). Some mistakes you just never stop paying for.


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