Greetings, earthlings. It's good to be here, it's so good to be here. So, when you type "Brandon" in Google Search, the top recommended entry is the star in the above Under Armour video: . He's already rather ubiquitous, particularly for a 19 year-old who didn't play college ball and has yet to play pro ball stateside. A good fit for a team with both visibility and profitability issues, it would seem. How high can this apparent budding star take Milwaukee? Well, the made an international splash in the draft a couple years ago. That recent bit of history shows this much is equally obvious and true: for the Jennings Effect to truly take hold, it must happen on the court. Regardless, nice vid. And for the record, all of these thousands of years later, I'm still playing a hopeless game of catch-up to Alexander the Great in the Google Search for "Alex."
Dime: Who's better: Ray Allen or Michael Redd?
Judging by the comments at Dime, Jesus walks over Mike. The perspective over there tilts nationally, but I doubt you would get much of an argument from either observant Boston or Milwaukee fans, and that's the clincher. Unfortunately, this is the same comparison Redd has dealt with for a long while now, and it's a difficult one to win in the hearts and minds of Milwaukeeans. I recall plenty of love for Ray in the stands when I reported at the /Bucks game last spring, even as the Bucks won and Allen scored just nine points on 2-11 shooting. What will it take to alter perception? Redd might be good enough to win a championship as a number three guy, and doing so for the Bucks rather than a different team would change everything in a hurry. For that to happen, he/we should hope Andrew Bogut and Brandon Jennings progress into the elite quickly, since Mike turns 30 in just over a week. Or the Bucks could go the Boston route and use an offseason to surround Redd with a pair of Hall-of-Fame types. From 24 wins to 66 and a title, in a year. And Milwaukee is working off 34 victories. Just like that.
SLAM: Early look at the East
After tying for 11th (and thus also 12th) in the East last season, and after all of the offseason changes, Lang Whitaker has the Bucks pretty much staying put in the 12-spot. That's a realistic place. Just as last season, challenging for a final playoff spot appears to be a best-case scenario. He has the Bucks ahead of the Pacers, which is sort of a big deal because if that came true it would snap Milwaukee's five-year run finishing last in the Central. Not so good: In an 11-expert panel published by the Orlando Sentinel, the Bucks finished 14th out of 15 in the conference.
SLAM: Chatting with Meeks
Scroll down just a bit to read Tzvi Twersky's interview with Jodie Meeks.
Hoops World: What's in a name?
An interesting rundown of Eastern Conference team nickname origins, put together by Joel Brigham. The birth of the "Bucks" is a good, if not somewhat typical, story. The Orlando Juice? So close, yet so far away.
Fan House: The Tip-Off Timer and '74 Bucks
Counting days until the regular season, Tim Povtak picked Milwaukee's 1974 title team as reason to celebrate that we were a mere 74 days from regular season basketball as of Friday; the first NBA regular season game is Cavaliers v. Celtics on October 27. The Bucks start three days later in the country's former capital, Philadelphia.
ESPN Milwaukee: Charlie Bell on the D-List
Charlie relays to the good people at 540 ESPN some of his experiences doing work around the state this summer. Oh, and there is some dialogue about Bell's other job.
Fox Sports: Putting some D in the NBA
First Shoals and now Rosen. Included among Charley Rosen's alphabetical list of the league's top defensive performers is just one Buck. Who? None other than current internet sensation Kurt Thomas. Also, one way or another, three players who played for Milwaukee last season made the cut: Keith Bogans, Royal Ivey, and Richard Jefferson.