Sunday, June 10, 2012


"That day in Chicago, why did you stand up?"
"Because I didn't want to see you fail."
Glenn Close to Robert Redford in The Natural

I dislike basketball, especially professional basketball, almost in its entirety.  But I am oddly drawn to the recent playoffs for one reason, Lebron James.  Much of the reason I root for James is because he's from my hometown (almost, Akron is close enough) and because he single handedly reinvigorated sports in Cleveland at a time when C-town was (and still is) in perpetual decline.  But there's something else.  Game 6 aside, I am continually amazed that we are confronted with an obvious situation of someone being clearly the best at something in the entire world without its recognition and even a disdain that we haven't seen for another in sports since Barry Sanders.

The measuring stick that haunts them both is team success.  Odd, considering their peers consider them without peer across the board.  But we are relegated to the opinions of beer-gutted, balding pseudo-ESPN personalities who deem themselves final arbiters of greatness.  So in the way the we ignored Sanders perpetually making a 3-win team a playoff contender, we ignore James making first a 30-win team a finals contender, and now, the Heat perpetual championship contenders.  Maybe that's why, as with Sanders' comparisons to Jim Brown, that Lebron's performance is compared to Wilt, because nothing in between has been as good.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Ain't No Way

It's harder to tell these days what's more fixed, the NBA playoffs or the market.  It's as if Tim Donaghy or Bruno Iksil are the real villains.  Sure, they're both criminals, but they served much more evil masters.  Donaghy admitted to fixing games but said you're crazy if you think I'm the only one.  As L. Jon Wertheim and Tobias Moskowitz mentioned in their book, Scorecasting, one NBA assistant coach told the broadcasters before a game, "ain't no way we're winning this motherfucker."

Its' not hard to see that in Miami the same intentional foul on Lebron James gets two shots and the ball and the next game in Boston it's not even called a foul.  The same goes for the likes of Jamie Dimon and "old Wall St." as Hedgeye is fond of calling them.  CDS trades are alive and well and earnings and growth forecasts remain unchanged while entire countries are literally collapsing.  We are again at zero for the year after Friday's collapse.

My advice? Either stay away entirely or embrace the horror because the casino is open for business.  If short, stay very short through etfs or weekly options because the day will come, and it will come after the market closes, where global money printing is announced.  This may not pre-date Greek elections, but that's only 2 weeks away.  If you were to avoid this market altogether, no one would fault you.