I was only running a few minutes late this morning, and was able to relax and watch a little of Cold Pizza, or First Take or whatever it is now.
Somehow they had gotten Greg Oden to appear on the show, and the interviewer spent the next few minutes trying to bait Oden into some sort of answer that would force him to look arrogant and/or a jerk.
You are being compared to great centers in NBA history--which great center are you the most like?
Who should be picked #1--you or Kevin Durant? Will you be upset if Durant goes first?
Who would you like to play for?
Horsepuckey, mid-morning ESPN anonymous talking drone. Oden manages not to fall into any of the pits that were being dug for him, and stayed nice and magnanimous to legendary NBA types, his fellow draft super-star, and even to all the teams in the NBA. And then the interview took a surprising turn, which leads me to believe that like Mearth, Greg Oden is a 65 year old alien who started life as an adult and is slowly maturing backwards in time.
The interviewer, determined to get some sort of answer from Oden asked him, "OK, but what teams did you grow up watching as a kid? Did you follow a particular team?" (Silently thinking to himself--aha! This will tell us where Oden secretly wants to play. It told us so much more...)
Oden replied, and I'm paraphrasing here, "Oh, sure. Growing up, I watched a lot of the Lakers, and the Celtics. They were just good teams, that played good basketball." Safe answer--big franchises with storied histories, doesn't mean anything, etc, etc. Except that the Celtics were never particularly good during Oden's lifetime, much less his formative years. In fact, they sucked the vast majority of the years that Oden has been alive. Let's delve, shall we?
Greg was born in January of 1988, so the first playoffs he would have been alive for were the 87-88 playoffs. Boston lost in the Conference Finals to Detroit. If he were a human baby, Greg Oden would not remember that. If he were born a 36 year old man, he probably would.
During his human formative years, when one goes and decides to be a fan of a team (I'm calling that ages 7-12) Boston was one of the worst teams, if not the worst, in the country. During that stretch, seasons of 95-96 to 00-01, the Celtics won an average of 29 games. The Celtics had one good year, during the 2001-02 season (49 wins!), and have steadily slid back into craptacular.
So, when, I ask you, WHEN was 18 year old Greg Oden a fan of the Celtics? C'mon, Oden, remember, we're pretending you aren't in your late 30's, dammit. Maybe Greg is a time-traveler?
Listen: Greg Oden has become unstuck in time.