Debunking the bogus “Colin Kaepernick is bad — he went 1-10” argument

The 2017 NFL season begins tonight, and every argument about why Colin Kaepernick remains out of the NFL has been debunked — except one.

“He is bad — he went 1-10!”


Yes, Kaepernick was 1-10 last season for the 2-14 49ers, but history tells us that a crappy record in merely one season is not enough to land a quarterback on the NFL’s unemployment list.

After all, Kaepernick’s 2016 was the 38th time in NFL/AFL history in which a quarterback in at least his 6th season won 3 or fewer games while losing 9 or more. Thirty-one quarterbacks other than Kaepernick produced such a season. Only two never played again. Continue reading “Debunking the bogus “Colin Kaepernick is bad — he went 1-10” argument”

This one’s for Cleveland.


I’ve never felt thrilled for another city’s fans. Not like this.

That is nearly the exact same intro I used for my column May 14, 2010, the day after the Cleveland Cavaliers were eliminated by the Boston Celtics — AKA the final game LeBron played as a member of the Cavs until his return last year.

You’ll notice, though, that it’s not EXACTLY the same intro. We’ve got one key word that’s different. Forget “ill.” Add “thrilled.” Continue reading “This one’s for Cleveland.”

Kobe vs. LeBron vs. Jordan vs. Durant vs. Steph — playoff scoring lows

LeBron vs. Kobe vs. Mike vs. KD…

“would you looka here readjack..Game 7, and the Bigs for the #Lakers had to come to the rescue once again…hmmmm”

That tweet came from my pal Shaun Davis as part of an ongoing discussion between the two of us concerning Kobe, LeBron, and the definition of hoops greatness. Mr. Davis was referring to Kobe Bryant’s 17-point Game 7 performance against the Denver Nuggets Saturday night, a truly poor showing for one of the League’s all-time greats, especially when you consider that Kevin Garnett — with one more NBA season to his name (and his legs) — posted a 28-14 with 5 blocks to close out Atlanta two nights before.

Shaun’s tweet got me thinking about Kobe, LeBron, and the gold standard Mr. Jordan, and put me in a mood for some statistical research concerning the low scoring playoff games of the League’s premier star and his two high profile successors. The sample section is every postseason game (through the first round of this year’s playoffs) in which the player in question played at least 30 minutes.

I’m going to leave the conclusions to you, the reader, and simply provide the findings. All stats are from Basketball Reference. Hit the game finder for your own discoveries.


*** UPDATED 21 MAY 2014 ***

I am updating this post today, in the middle of the playoffs, because why not? Also, to spice things up, I am adding Kevin Durant along with three categories. I will update again after the Finals.

*** UPDATED 29 MAY 2014 ***

LeBron set his new playoff scoring low last night with 7 points in Miami’s 93-90 loss. However, he only played 24 minutes, which is why I am leaving him off this list. Here is the box score.

*** UPDATED 2 JUNE 2016 ***

Amazing how quickly the NBA has changed. When I last updated this post, Steph Curry was a new All-Star scoring 24 points per game. Now he’s the two-time defending MVP and a member of the 30 ppg club. As such, we need to get him in here. Updated through Game 1 of the 2016 Finals.

*** UPDATED 21 MAY 2017 ***

LeBron threw up an 11-pointer tonight in Game 3 of the East Finals vs. Boston. Time to update.

And of course, KD and Steph are now teammates. I’ll update again after the Finals.

Okay, let’s get to it.

Continue reading “Kobe vs. LeBron vs. Jordan vs. Durant vs. Steph — playoff scoring lows”

On the John: The magnificent, the massive, the only… Shaquille O’Neal

On the John

The magnificent, the massive, the only… Shaquille O’Neal

Originally completed June 2, 2011

Shaq throws down.

Shaquille O’Neal has been in my life for 20 years. That alone is incredible. I don’t think of Shaq as “old,” but Shaq is so old that his likeness was used in the Super Nintendo video game NCAA Basketball, a game that once made my friend Luke vomit at Ray Weaver’s house because the entire court spun every time there was a possession change, and we had a sequence with about three steals in a row.

This is almost forgotten now, but in the early 90s Shaq was destroyed by the media for seeming to care more about entertainment than athletics. Part of this criticism was spawned no doubt because he was a “bad” entertainer, releasing forgettable rap albums and starring in – with the exception of Blue Chips – garbage movies. Continue reading “On the John: The magnificent, the massive, the only… Shaquille O’Neal”

History lessons.

Time to Settle Accounts March 26, 2011: History lessons.

Michael the father, Kobe the son.
Michael the father, Kobe the son.

At headquarters, debate centered around the all-time rank of Kobe Bryant.

“Second,” General said when I asked for opening statements. Ricky nodded in agreement. I sat surprised. “Second best guard?” I said. “Or second best player?” Continue reading “History lessons.”

Between Triple-Dubs: Six Great ASG Performances that Didn’t Win MVP

Between Triple-Dubs: Six Great ASG Performances that Didn’t Win MVP

Kobe and Michael and back again.

It is 2011 and basketball is different. Players dunk with their toes completely behind the foul line, and they bag All-Star triple doubles with 29 points instead of 14, and they collect 37 points and 14 boards at age 32. That last line belongs to the great Kobe Bryant, who produced a brilliant turn-back-the-clock performance in Sunday’s All-Star Game, an avalanche of attacking dunks and up-and-unders and fall-away gems that was just enough to bury the East. Continue reading “Between Triple-Dubs: Six Great ASG Performances that Didn’t Win MVP”

On the John: I’m going going, back back, to Cali Cali

On the John

I’m going going, back back, to Cali Cali

Good to be back...

Originally completed September 6, 2010

When I pulled off the 134 onto Verdugo Road in the Glassell Park area of Los Angeles, the strong and unmistakable good-to-be-back feeling that surged through me was a welcome surprise. My visit to my brother and our friends in April was a wonderful one – though I’d planned to return before the summer was out, I did not expect to feel such nostalgia for the intersection of Eagle Rock and Avenue 40. Continue reading “On the John: I’m going going, back back, to Cali Cali”

On the John: Burn on, big river, burn on

On the John

Burn on, big river, burn on

Originally completed July 9, 2010

Growing up ain’t easy…

A nine-year-old Cleveland boy woke up this morning a new man. His world crumbled last night when the words “South Beach” fell on his ears. He was sitting in his inflatable Cleveland Cavaliers chair when it happened, wearing the child-sized JAMES 23 jersey his parents bought him for his eighth birthday. It was the only item on his list that year. Continue reading “On the John: Burn on, big river, burn on”

On the John: Keeping it all in house

On the John

Keeping it all in house

Originally completed July 8, 2010

Where to?
Where to?

Let’s talk about LeBron, the Bulls, NBA super teams, free agent decision-making, corporate sports, intimate relationships, and the future of professional athletics.

It happens today. After many moons, after many false scoops, LeBron James tells everyone who cares where he will be balling for the next few years.

Where’s he signing? That question has been traveling two years to get here. And now it’s here. And you have to say. Call it… Continue reading “On the John: Keeping it all in house”