February 08, 2007

An Old Fashioned Throw Down

All of you two-bit Yanks who are still harboring undying geographic resentment over that whole “Civil War” thing are probably none too pleased when this site takes a moment to dole out some occasional love for the Dirty South.

Sorry to say, you’ll have to do your best not to turn up your nose in disdain as we take a brief foray into Georgia high school hoops – specifically to look at a unique feature in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution showing (in video form) the various signature dunks of some of the premier ballers in the state.

(And to all you Yanks who thought we still used irrigation canals instead of regular plumbing and brushed our teeth with sticks and river water, we’ve actually got digital videos that we can put on the Internet. Take that!)

So if you can put your petty grudges aside, go check out the video here. Then come back and read the breakdown, which begins now:

Okay, so these weren’t the most incredible dunks you’ve ever seen, but remember, these are high schoolers. At The OCC’s high school, we’d take any dunk we could get, even if it was of the typical right-handed flush variety. If any of these were to have happened in our gymnasium back in the day, the entire place would have quite literally combusted and everyone would have died the most blissful death of all time.

A few things that stand out from the video:

1) There are a couple instances in here (most notably during the footage of Delwan Graham of Dunwoody High School) when the dunks go into slow motion and you’ll notice the slow motion groaning sound most commonly associated with a) someone diving in front of the assassin’s bullet in a cheesy movie, and b) that dude in your office who takes excruciatingly awful, drawn-out dumps every day after lunch.

Pretty comical to hear that noise over footage of these dunks, especially since it sounds a lot like the audio was dubbed in. Which, if true, would obviously be great. Because dubbing is funny.

2) Gotta give some props to the names for these dunks, which range from the mundane and uninteresting (“Get the crowd hyped”) to the subtly spectacular (“The dagger,” and “Grits,” because whenever Gani Lawal of Norcross High School is near the goal, “it’s instant.”)

3) And as for the best dunk, the vote here goes to Jerron Stone of Decatur High in Atlanta, alma mater of Ravens’ back-up tight end Daniel Wilcox and perennial rival of The OCC’s previously-alluded to high school.

Never mind that Stone’s nickname is “J-Bunny” – his dunk, at least, is pretty sick. Even if he does take about 35 steps without dribbling to set it up. Making the dunk even better is that his teammates go absolutely nuts when he throws it down, even though they’ve all probably seen it about 30 times.

In closing, gotta give a quick fist pound to the AJC for putting up such an innovative feature (the mechanics of pounding fists with a newspaper are still being worked out). You can only hope that with continuing advances in video technology, more local papers will be able to put up videos such as these, which really opened a previously closed door into the world of Georgia high school basketball.

(Note to self: Kill self for sounding way too much like a poorly-written public service announcement in final sentence.)


Speaking of dogs (which we were not previously speaking of), did you hear the one about Ron Artest (reportedly) being insanely cruel to his Great Dane named Socks, which he is said to have left unfed and unattended in his yard for weeks at a time?

Apparently, RonRon claims that one of his dogs, an American bulldog, “dominated all the food,” which is a principle you’ll actually be quite familiar with if you’ve watched Kings’ games this year, where the American bulldog is Artest, Socks the Great Dane represents Artest’s teammates and “food” is the ball. Dude quite often dribbles the ball for about 18 seconds out of the 24 and then throws up a shot no matter where he is when the shot clock’s winding down. Almost induces puke to watch it.

But getting briefly back to the hounds, we’re not going to go getting all PETA on this topic, particularly after our intentionally insensitive remarks about that one horse whose name we can’t currently remember.

However, we will say this: Animal cruelty is kind of creepy. And it makes people who do it look slightly, if not very, depraved. So if Ron Artest is trying to reform his image (and by all accounts while he hasn’t done anything that crazy of late, he’s still not trying all that hard), he might want to try taking the time out of his day to simply feed the dog.

Or at the bare minimum, he could throw a ball to it occasionally. At least then he’d be making a clear effort to pass to somebody.


Blogger Steve Barton said...

Enjoyed your post, OCC. I had already checked out the dunk videos when the word was passed to Dunwoody fans about Delwan's participation.

As a hometown fan I voted for Delwan (his is great, and he averages two+ dunks per game) and I enjoyed all the dunks, but it is no accident that "J-Bunny" is the leading vote-getter -- wow!

All the best, Steve Barton

11:39 AM, February 10, 2007  
Blogger The OCC said...

Cheers, Steve, from one native Georgian (ATL) to another. I thought Delwan's dunk was pretty nice, but there was a little something extra about Jerron's that had that me (nearly) getting up out of my seat. Not quite, but nearly.

Kind of a shame that the dunk with the best name "Grits" was actually the most boring one.

6:07 PM, February 11, 2007  

Post a Comment

<< Home