A Most Excellent Season

Apr 19, 2001... Young Bill Krieger


"Yo Yo... So, in honor of the brothers, 

we thought we'd put out one of their jams and fuck it up.

Check this shit out."

- Rage Against the Machine, in concert before rocking with Cypress Hill

A Most Excellent Season

I would rank the NIBL 2001 regular season as "most excellent." Lots of close races... some crazy shit...pretty fun time.

My highlights, in order of stream of consciousness (I'm listening to Local H if that helps):

Newbie of the Year

Newbie Rip City caught everyone's attention early with a NIBL record 429 nibls in week 6. The Rippers almost doubled up Walla's score of 218. We haven't seen thrashings like that since Ole Rob Reed's days with the Bolingbrook Bighops. He He. Bighops... what a dork. Alas, the Rippers quirky crew fell apart in the end, but it was exciting. With Jamison, Hughes, Camby, the Houston backcourt and the suddenly sullen Shareef Abdur-Rahim, no one had more head cases that Ripper Rob Triol.

Stubbed toe award

Elk Grove went on a midseason tear as Shaq and McDyess got angrier and angrier. The Cougars only had two problems. First, every time Shaq or McDyess stubbed their toe (or some other body part), Elk Grove lost. Second, Nantucket took care of bid-ness by sweeping all three games with Elk Grove and snatching second place in the West.

Proper Expectations

Against all odds, reigning NIBL champ Diablo reached his lofty midseason goal of "double digit wins Bill... really, I can do it... you'll see." At 11-14, you did it Danny. Rub down the NIBL plaque while you can.

Over-achiever of the Year

I'll take that one, thank you. Post-draft publications (sitting on my porch after the draft) had Aruba finishing no better than .500 with my lot of boring has-beens and all-alien backcourt (Cassell & Van Exel). Well, Tim Duncan turned out to be the second best player in the league alongside four 30+ nibl starters, and I'm in the playoffs. Shit, even buster Tony Kukoc participated for a few games in the end there.

Game of the Year

My personal favorite was Aruba's 386-368 comeback backbreaker over my arch-nemesis Cap City. The game was a season high for both teams. The total nibls racked up, 754, was the second highest total in NIBL history. The win the Thongies second place, the tiebreaker, and a ticket into the playoffs.

Hard Luck Case

Vegas lost a bone-crushing 4 games by 10 nibls or less. Tommy continues his hard luck streak. The Vermin did snarf victories out of 6 of their last 7 games, but it was too little too late. 7 players scored more than 1,900 nibls this season, and Tommy had two of them: KG and 'Toine.

The Cream of the NIBL

F Don Fenton. He won a NIBL record 19 games in a row (week 3 - week 21) in that "weak sister" Western Conference. He led the NIBL in scoring with 7,933 nibls, for a 317 nibl/game average. Awesome! He is the number one seed in the playoffs and is bringing along his top three picks (Kobe, Mutombo, and Nowitzki).

The Dumbest/Smartest Transaction

Aruba released Jason Terry (Atl) to acquire buster Chauncey Billups. Well, West Chicago promptly grabbed Terry off the ash heap and Terry went on to be the Beaters 3rd leading scorer and average 31 nibl/game. Dop.

Getting Your Wish

"I want Keving Garnett next year." Manila finished the season at a bruising 9-16 and should have no problem fulfilling her wish.

Best/Worst Draft Picks

The best pick is pretty easy. Nantucket snarfed Shawn Marion in the 8th round! Marion was a third wheel in the NIBL's most potent scoring trio of Malone, Stackhous and Marion. These guys totaled 5,207 nibls over the season and led 'Tucket to its first playoff appearance. The Bucket's 8th round choice, Marion, averaged better than 33 nibls a game. Wow!

Well, "worst" may be a bit harsh, how about "toughest luck" pick. Gotsa be Walla's 9th overall pick of Grant Hill. Hill played one week and was done. Bad news for Walla, good news for Napa Valley... Tracy McGrady scarfed up those low-hanging nibls with style.

Speaking of McGrady, if Vegas had the NIBL's best frontcourt with KG and 'Toine, Napa Valley sported the best backcourt of McGrady and Kidd.

In conclusion, I've said it before and I'll say it again. If there's is one thing that holds the NIBL together like super glue... no, not the fun or the spirited competition, or the pictures of Rose McGowan... it's the communal dislike for Don Fenton and his band of fruity thugs. A pox on West Chicago in his attempt to repeat as NIBL champion.

Invitiation to Exercise

Aruba Thong owner and man about town Young Bill Krieger and newbie Rob Ripper Triol invite you to join us at the Naperville 10K Run to be held on Saturday May 5 at 8:00 am. It's only $20, and you get a t-shirt. It's really fun too... last year Rob ran shirtless, carrying a beer and in jogging shorts two sizes too small. 

So, for god's sake... Be There!

By the way, for those metric-impaired, 10K meters is about 6.2 miles. 

QOD Redux

"There's one thing that you can't understand...

how I can just kill a man"

- Cypress Hill lyrics

Playoff Preview

Not much to say really. I don't remember past playoff teams being this balanced and strong, I guess. Last year we had Diablow Danny with the two-headed monster of Shaq and Kobe. This year is more balanced and looks like a "gol dang battle out there". Check it out.

#1. West Chicago CleavageBeaters

Ah, the rich get richer. Don follows up his sterling regular season with a boffo playoff lineup:

  • F - Dirk Nowitizki, Dal
  • F - Mo Peterson, Tor
  • C - Dikembe, Phi
  • G - Kobe, Lal
  • G - Baron Davis, Cha

With the mid-season Mutombo trade, Don is strong strong strong. By the way, this is West Chicago's 3rd playoff appearance in 4 nibl-years.

#2. Napa Valley Tasters

Again, Eric's playoff roster is loaded. ( Whatever happened to the playoff guy versus winning in the regular season tradeoff? ) Napa is weak at center, but carries the nibl's best backcourt into the playoffs, guns a-blazin':

  • F - T-Mac, Orl
  • F - Stoyo, Sac
  • C - Shawn Bradley, Dal
  • G - Jason Kidd, Pho
  • G - Alvin Wiliams, Tor

Alvin Wiliams and Bradley were key midseason pickups for the Taster. This is Eric's first playoff shot... good thing he got out of Baghdad, I guess.

#3. Aruba Thongs

The Thong are playoff-strong with five of my top 7 picks filling out an angry playoff roster:

  • F - Jalen Rose, Ind
  • F - Wally World, Min
  • C - Tim Duncan, Sas
  • G - S Cassell, Mil
  • G - Derek Anderson, Sas

This is Aruba's 3rd playoff try. Will it be as futile as the first two?

#4. Nantucket Buckets

Nantucket loses its second-leading scorer, Stackhouse, going into the playoffs. Jack also needs to grab a center in the playoff draft. Rotsa Ruck...

  • F - Malone, Uth
  • F - Marion, Pho
  • C - ???
  • G - Glenn Rice, Nyk
  • G - Mark Jackson, Nyk

The midseason trade of Mark Jackson to the Knick could hurt the Buckets. Jackson was putting up better numbers for Toronto. Nantucket will need stellar playoff nibls from Malone and Marion to survive...fer sure.

This is Nantucket Jack's first appearance in the playoffs.

Dotting the eyes

Finally, check out the All-NIBL team at the bottom of the NIBL 2001 page. Aw hell, just click on this:

The 2001 All-NIBL Team

Let the games, playoff games that is, begin!

yow, bill

PS - Pockets anyone?