MTJ - Mass Transit Journal

This was once a daily account of my journey into the world of public transportation. Now, it's just a sports blog.

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Thursday, February 12, 2004
You know how when your car breaks down and you have to ride the bus for awhile? Well, my bus pass broke down and so I've been taking the car. That explains why I haven't been blogging lately. Taking the car makes it much easier to get to work, but it makes it much more difficult to see all of the character of the city, like people throwing up, stupid conversations, and all of the wonderful smells downtown. Bummer.

Since I haven't been blogging, I decided to make it up to you. With something that has nothing to do with Mass Transit. (Unless you count all of the Portland Trailblazers that are leaving town!)

It has to do with the NBA. A couple of years ago, I started examining some of the weird names of players in the NBA. Believe me, they've gotten weirder lately. So, around NBA All-Star time, I take a look at the rosters of the teams in the NBA and make a list. Here it is:

2003 – 2004 Edition – What's in a Name?

It's almost time for the NBA All-Star Game, and with all of the All-NBA teams being named, I thought I'd add mine.
Here are some of the NBA's weirdest names. A couple of footnotes though – I'm not including any players from the country formerly known as the USSR , i.e., Slovokia, Georgia, etc. They're just too weird. Besides, for all we know, Andrei Kirilenko could be the Russian equivalent of "Joe Jackson." Also, some of these players were on the list last year. Hey, you can't pass up putting a Popeye Jones or a Speedy Claxton on a list like this! And just because I'm not putting Russian players on the list, doesn't mean I can't put up players from Nigeria, Argentina or Brazil. It's my list, my prerogative.

So, here's the All-Name NBA team:

1st Team
Bimbo Coles – Miami Heat
Moochie Norris – NY Knicks
Obinna Ekezie – Atlanta Hawks
Nene Hilario – Denver Nuggets
Stromile Swift – Memphis Grizzlies

2nd Team
Bonzi Wells – Memphis Grizzlies
Speedy Claxton – Golden State Warriors
Popeye Jones – Golden State Warriors
Bo Outlaw – Memphis Grizzlies
Ndudi Ebi – Minnesota Timberwolves

Coaches – Flip Saunders, Minnesota & Maurice Cheeks, Portland

Honorable Mention:
Wang Zhi-Zhi – Miami Heat
Tamal Slay – NJ Nets
Othella Harrington – NY Knicks
Boris Diaw – Atlanta Hawks
Cuttino Mobley – Houston Rockets

And the team with the most weird names…

(By the way, this part of the competition was tougher this year as there were several contenders. The Miami Heat and Phoenix Suns were definitely in the top 3, but the winner is….)

The Cleveland Cavaliers:

Jeff McInnis
Carlos Boozer
Dajuan Wagner
J.R. Bremer
Tony Battie
Kedrick Brown
Zydrunas Ilgauskas
Kevin Ollie
Ira Newble
LeBron James
Jason Kapono
Ruben Boumtje-Boumtje (Boom-shay Boom-shay!)
DeSagana Diop
Eric Williams
(OK, so they need to trade this Eric Williams guy to the 76rs for Amal McKaskill. That would complete the team.)

A new award this year goes to the team with the most normal names:
This year, hands down, you have to pick the New Orleans Hornets.
(Hornets, you say? In New Orleans? Do they even have hornets in Louisiana? Makes as much sense as the Utah Jazz, huh?! They're not even allowed to listen to jazz in Utah. I bet they have hornets in Utah, though. Why don't we just switch the "Jazz" back to the Big Easy and make Utah be the Hornets. I mean, I don't think there was an abundance of hornets in Charlotte, right?

Oh, sorry. Was that out loud? All I meant to do was list New Orleans' roster as the team with the most normal names. Anyway, here it is:

Baron Davis
Stacey Augmon
Darrell Armstrong
David Wesley
Steve Smith
George Lynch
Bryce Drew
Jamaal Magloire
Jamal Mashburn
David West
Courtney Alexander
Robert Traylor
P.J. Brown
Sean Rooks

Coach: Tim Floyd

Alright, so they have a guy who's first name is Baron, so what. And they also have guys named Stacey and Courtney! But look at the rest of them – C-mon! Steve Smith? PJ Brown? Darrell Armstrong? Have you ever heard of so many regular names?! Even their coach has a normal name: Tim Floyd.

And for the second year in a row, the most fun name to say out loud ….
It's still "Ansu Sesay," Seattle Supersonics. (pronounced ann sue see say)
Go ahead, try it. Say it out loud. See? Fun, huh?!

Although, Keyong Dooling is fun to say, and so is Zaza Pachulia.

Of course, I'm not even mentioning players like Rasheed Wallace, who just got traded for Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Theo Ratliff and Dan Dickau!! Whoa! There's some names for ya'