Tuesday, December 19, 2006

David Eckstein in studio and Congrats, Michael Heisley is still your owner

We had Antonio Tarver on Monday (audio below if you missed it). Nice week at the end of the year for the show.
Now to the Grizzlies...
I was beside myself with some of the commentary of the calls we took on Tuesday. As many of you know, I was stunned by the negativity surrounding the Davis group and its attempt to buy the Grizzlies. My position from the jump was that if Davis and his group did not have the money, they would not get the team. That was a huge if, obviously. My stance had always been that David Stern and the board would not give a guy a team if they did not feel it was a stable situation.
Did I want the group bid to succeed? Sure I did. As I would with any group that said they would move to Memphis, embrace the city and the fans, and commit to a winning product. I am guilty of that optimism in this case. In addition to those qualities, I loved the idea of having a young African-American owner in Memphis. There was always a huge question of the money, but that was not for me to decide. That was for the NBA to decide, if it ever got to that point.
Why did I get so irritated with the "I told you so" people? Because in the end, Michael Heisley is still the owner of the team. What did you tell me? That I should never have been optimistic? That is exactly what I was talking about in the first place, and today reinforced my point. I wanted to believe in something better. I have never and will never get a good explanation of why people were so negative about the idea. Why could they not think like me and concede that if the money is not there, it would not happen? Today proved nothing except that some of the callers have no ability to process logical thought. I love the idea that a new ownership would have run the team in an undesirable way. Like say....
Have a boring coach that no one likes?
Create an environment that has little to no excitement and 10,000 in the stands?
Holds back a great GM from doing what he does best?
Holds back that same GM from making personnel moves and taking a run at a legit superstar?
Cutting costs all across the board continually for 2 years?
Lying and saying his GM can make decisions in the basketball operations?
Wanting no part of owning the team anymore?
I apologize for wanting something better, and hoping someone could provide it. I am sorry. Do I wish they had the money? You are damn right I do. I will with the next group, and the next, and then next one after that.
My favorite line of the day was when a caller (Mario) blamed the Davis group for the Grizzlies not getting in the Iverson mix. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAA, Seriously, Stop it, Hahahahaha! I was charged with being "duped" for wanting to believe in the Davis group. I host a radio show. Heisley was also just hoping too? He hand-cuffed Jerry West from improving the franchise status leaps and bounds without knowing for sure if the deal was kosher? He was just sitting at a table with his fingers crossed about the deal? He allowed an attainable superstar to be taken off the market for less than what the Grizz could offer because he was sure it was going through, right? Surely if Mario and my brilliant callers knew not to believe it could happen, a multi-millionaire should too, right? Don't give me that Davis gave him some piddly fee and that is why he thought it would go through. The facts are that Heisley is responsible for holding back Jerry West and he has been in cost-cutting mode for running on two years. Heisley should damn well better know that the deal is a sure thing before he makes the decision to not make moves that would help this franchise more than anything else ever has. Michael Heisley was at one time a very good owner. Now he is a guy trying to roll out, and he acts as such. This franchise could have gotten Allen Iverson. A franchise changing move stopped... and it is unforgivable. That was our chance, and I am supposed to blame a potential buyer who may never be seen or heard from again? Give me a freaking break. Unforgivable.
If you want to cheer, and celebrate, and act as if you knew all along, have fun. Are you happy that you were right and these guys did not have the money? Take pride in the fact that you were right in your assumption, but realize that now the mess only continues. Congrats, the Grizzlies are still owned by a guy that wants to get rid of them. Still happy?