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The Madhouse - Week of 8/9/19

Interoffice conflict has led to an all new Madhouse.

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Phoenix Suns v Toronto Raptors Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

Ok we’re making some changes to The Madhouse.

So there was a little bit of an incident in the BSOTS offices this week. Esteemed contributor Rod Argent approached HR and filed a complaint regarding the content of The Madhouse.

Rod’s claim was that during the offseason there is not enough news to go around. As Center of the Sun is posted on Mondays, and this piece is posted on Fridays, Rod is unable to find enough content for his weekly column.

I’m not going to say he cried in front of HR. That would be unfair. So, we’re just going to say that he held back tears.

Now, I must be candid. My initial reaction was to drop him like a sack of Dirk Nowitzki bobbleheads. But ultimately I handled it in a more magnanimous way than you could ever begin to imagine. I’m the real hero in this story.

So here is what we are going to do moving forward. Rod is going to write COTS on Mondays, as he always has, and we’ll ensure there’s no overlap. His will be all hoops and he’ll leave more absurd things, like Larry Fitzgerald going on a bike ride with Robert Sarver on Coronado Island, to me.

For my Suns part, I’ll go back to Rod’s piece and offer my thoughts on some things he talked about. If we’re being honest, COTS is the best weekly column on Bright Side not named The Madhouse, so you should be reading regularly.

Now for change two.

Many thanks for voting in last week’s poll. It really helps to craft this thing into something we can all enjoy.

I’m going to go a little lighter on “My Stuff.” I’ll still tell you what I’m getting into, but if you have any questions or want some more details, just ask in the comments section.

Additionally, I’m going to bring back a little bit of “Suns Swag.” If you guys enjoy it, then I’m happy to expand on that, perhaps turning it into its own weekly column again.

Ok, I think that’s it.

Suns Stuff

So Rod led off Monday’s column with an interesting discussion about whether or not the Suns can significantly increase their win total from a year ago. I’ll not throw all the numbers back at you, because he covered just about everything, but suffice it to say that is has happened before. Multiple times. The only number I’ll add is that Vegas books have the Suns winning in the neighborhood of 27-29 games next year.

Obviously, the further you fall the greater opportunity there is to significantly rebound. For someone like myself, who doesn’t look at a lot of advanced statistics, this is something that could happen. I wouldn’t have said that three weeks ago. Maybe it has something to do with a dietary change or sleeping better.

Last season the Suns were terrible and virtually nothing worked. When things are that bad you make as much change as you can. In every facet of the game. I’ll get beat up for suggesting this, but after last season ended, I wouldn’t have had any problem at all with the Suns shopping around Devin Booker. I think the problem we run into as sports fans is that we think, “well everyone is on the trading block, except that guy.

No, when you win fewer than 25 games with regularity, everyone is on the trading block. Even that guy. Don’t misunderstand me, I’m happy Book is still around, and I’m encouraged that change has been enacted if only for change sake. But had moving him been explored, it wouldn’t have bothered me. Sometimes some people don’t work together with other people at that time and place in the universe. I don’t make the rules.

Rod linked to an article where Monty Williams specifically mentioned that Kelly Oubre Jr. was a reason he was excited about taking the Phoenix Suns job.

I found that especially encouraging. The first BS answer a lot of guys would give is something that doesn’t involve a player’s name. Something like “well Phoenix has a rich basketball history and there are plenty of young guys looking to make an impact this season and I really think this organization is about to turn a corner and by the way I heard locals like tacos and I like tacos too so you should all love me.”

Garbage. The second BS answer would involve Devin Booker. “I can’t wait to coach a top-caliber player like Book.” Yeah that’s not news. So would 90% of NBA coaches.

So perhaps I’m looking too much into it but I like that he didn’t feed us some line about a future Hall-of-Famer or rookies who will make an “immediate impact.” Book will be Book. The rookies will not make a significant immediate impact. But the ceiling on Oubre is awfully high.

Rod’s poll asked, “Which Suns rookie do you think will contribute the most on the court this season?” A total of 253 votes were cast with Cameron Johnson garnering 71% of the vote, Ty Jerome 25%, and Jalen Lecque 4%.

I think that’s just a little bit lopsided. I suppose it depends on your definition of “contribute.” Johnson is the better shooter and athlete no doubt, but from what little I saw Jerome looked like a pretty smart ballplayer. Call it HIGH BASKETBALL IQ or whatever sports speak you hate. Top to bottom the Suns haven’t been very smart in recent years. Smart might be what the organization needs.

NBA Stuff

NBA2K20 is going to feature WNBA teams for the first time. That includes the Las Vegas Aces and a bunch of other squads you shouldn’t care nearly as much about as the Las Vegas Aces. (Ed. note: Keith lives in Vegas these days)

Kevin Durant, who is entirely capable of making his own decisions, has generously chosen not to blame the Golden State Warriors for the Achilles injury he suffered in last season’s NBA Finals.

The NBA will be announcing the full 2019-20 schedule on Monday, August 12th. DON’T COME AT ME ROD, YOU CAN HAVE IT.

The league is making moves to take mental health more seriously in the upcoming season.

Tony Parker is having a yacht built. I know this because I have a subscription to the SuperYacht Times.

CJ McCollum thinks players don’t want to represent a depleted Team USA in the upcoming FIBA World Cup because if they lose they’ll get clowned and they would prefer to not be clowned.

On one of those morning shows where two guys yell at each other about sports while a woman does a lot of quiet observation Max Kellerman and Ryan Clark got so heated about’s “All-Decade Team” that host Molly Qerim elected to excuse herself.

Twitch is the official streaming partner for USA Basketball. When I figure out how all that works you’re going to have to decide whether to watch that or watch Keith on one of his legendary Dig Dug sessions.

Oakland head coach Jon Gruden wants his Raiders to be more like Steve Kerr’s Golden State Warriors.

When the calendar turns to 2020, Vince Carter could become the first NBA player to compete in four decades.

My Stuff

What I’m reading: Haven’t started it yet but someone mailed me Fail Until You Don’t: Fight Grind Repeat, Bobby Bones

What I’m playing: Playstation Classic is fully modded and I have about 50 roms on there. Currently spending a lot of time with G. Darius.

What I’m listening to: Supertramp, Breakfast in America

What I’m watching: I am really struggling to get through the last two episodes of season one of True Detective. For no other reason than I’m starting it too late. But it will definitely happen this weekend. When I’m done I’m going to watch either Black Swan or Deadwood: The Movie.

Suns Swag

Well this is a sight. Have you been in the market for an Anfernee Hardaway Phoenix Suns throwback that features a generous amount of snake skin and also has zippers on the side for what I’m sure are very convincing reasons? Well if so, seller bydremack would be happy to trade it for $810.

If snake skin custom jerseys are outside of your price range, then perhaps you would be more interested in marrying your two true loves, the Phoenix Suns and outer space. 0113 is willing to part with a letter written by George English the former director of Kennedy Space Center’s Executive Management Office. The letter is addressed to Sir Charles Barkley and a tour of the facilities is offered. This piece of history(?) will set you back $200, but the seller will hear offers.

Or maybe hoops and music is your thing. Here’s a drumhead signed by 10 of the 2002-03 Phoenix Suns. STAT, Matrix, Starbury, Penny, and everybody’s favorite, Jake Tsakalidas. Only $111.11 but bethsellsandbuysall will hear your offers.

What I’m Thinking

Last week we talked about kale. Someone in the comments section mentioned how they grow their own in their backyard. I was intrigued and that is a very real discussion that is happening in the Scheessele household.

On Saturday I got up, had my coffee, and had a dance party with my daughter. When we turned on the TV to watch morning baseball, one of the joys of living in the Pacific Time Zone, we were encountered with the news of the El Paso shooting. A few minutes after that I checked out my social media accounts. A few minutes after that I deleted all the accounts.

I’m having some trouble finding a couple of t-shirts I want. I’m looking for a Hawaii Islanders and Evansville Triplets in the ¾ sleeve style. I mean, they’re out there, but they’re expensive. Getting into the $30 range. I can’t pay $30 for a t-shirt, I’d have to wear that well into my 40s to justify that cost. I considered getting a Cricut and getting into making them on my own. Any feedback is appreciated.

I’ve been thinking a lot recently about “sports loyalty.” Obviously one of the reasons that’s relevant to this discussion is that we all follow a team that’s giving us a lot of reasons to walk away.

Firstly, let me say that I don’t care what anyone does. Invest every second of your allotted leisure time into watching a team that won’t win 20 games. I don’t care. If that’s your thing, do your thing.

But, BUT, understand that there’s no nobility in that. The whole, “I’ve been a fan for XX years and I’ve suffered through XX losing seasons” means nothing. Nothing. There’s only one reason to watch the Suns or any team or to engage in literally any leisurely activity in this life or the next and it’s because you enjoy it. “It means more to me because I’ve been through the losing.” No it doesn’t, dummy. Sit down. Ball isn’t life despite what t-shirt you read.

Anyway, don’t misunderstand me. I’ve been misunderstood before, just ask my wife. Value your time. If you like watching the Suns, watch the Suns. If you find watching the team insufferable, move on. There’s a lot of suffering out there and this variety is easily avoidable.

That said, as of August 8th, I’m invested in the 2019-20 season.

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