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NEWS | May 29, 2009

This week's sports observations

By Airman 1st Class Patrick McKenna Capital Flyer sports writer

1) As I'm writing this, Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers are facing a 3-1 series deficit against the Orlando Magic. I separated Lebron from his team in the previous sentence because, if you watched Tuesday's Game 4, that's exactly how it played out. It was a one man show. Don't get me wrong, Lebron certainly had a great game (44 points, 12 rebounds, 7 assists) and he's had a historic series, but the team is 0-3 in games he's scored more than 40 points. What does that tell you?

Mo Williams, the "other All Star" on the Cavs, needs to spend less time guaranteeing wins to the media and more time walking the walk. He didn't score a single point after the third quarter in the Cavs' Game 4 overtime loss. Williams and Delonte West also combined to go 0-6 from outside the arc in a game the Cavs lost by two points. By the time this article comes out, the series will either be heading for a Game 6 or the Magic will be heading to the Finals, but one thing is already set in stone: the Cavs have zero shot of making it to a Game 6, let alone the Finals, if they keep up this act.

2) I'm literally shaking my head as I write this. Manny Ramirez is currently fourth among outfielders in National League all-star game voting despite being suspended for 50 games. Really baseball fans? As if America's past-time hasn't had enough to be embarrassed about lately, we are going to vote for a guy who was caught violating Major League Baseball's drug policy THIS SEASON?

After the Shawne Merriman fiasco, the National Football League instituted a policy stating any player testing positive for a performance enhancing substance would be ineligible from Pro Bowl consideration for that season. Major League Baseball needs to adopt a similar policy to try and save what little shred of credibility it still has with those fans who don't blindly root for a uniform but for the athlete underneath.

3) Lost in the craziness of the NBA Playoffs was the NBA Draft Lottery. Sure, the Los Angeles Clippers won the lottery (poor Blake Griffin), but the team that should be doing cartwheels is the Oklahoma City Thunder. They have the third selection and have plenty of options. Most experts expect the first two picks to be Griffin and Spanish sensation Ricky Rubio. The Thunder already have a dynamic young core in Kevin Durant, Jeff Green and Russell Westbrook, so they'll consider dealing the pick for an established veteran. But I think the team should stand pat and select center Hasheem Thabeet. Thabeet would provide a defensive force the team is sorely lacking (a force they could have had if they hadn't gotten cold feet in the Tyson Chandler trade) If the Thunder play their cards right, they'll be rivaling the Trail Blazers as the best up and coming team in the Western Conference.