I do not want to talk about the Phoenix game anymore. And the month of January was unnecessarily mean to the Rockets. It's time to get a little bit whimsical.
We've done a few of these "movie/TV character" comparisons in the past:
characters from Married... with Children
characters from Family Guy
characters from the Big Lebowski
and The Princess Bride
-- this last one quite possibly my most favorite thing I've ever written to this date.
As you can see, we have been lacking in these completely arbitrary and wacky "posts" this year. So, today I bring you:
The Houston Rockets as characters from the hit new show "Community"!
What's that? You aren't watching this show?
Shame on you. Best new show on TV not starring Al Bundy.
The basic premise is that the lead character, Jeff Winger, is a fast-talking (and somewhat disgraced) lawyer who has been exposed for not having a proper law school degree and he has to go back to college because the "University of Colombia" isn't ABA accredited. So he enrolls at Greendale Community College, where he encounters all sorts of crazy characters. Each of whom remind me of particular players on the current Houston Rockets roster.
Because he's the central character, after the jump let's begin with Jeff Winger:
Who else could this possibly be but our resident boy genius Daryl Morey? Like Jeff, Daryl is usually the smartest guy in the room and everyone gravitates towards him. He's usually able to fool anyone he sees as competition (i.e., the Scola and Lowry trades... the Landry/Brooks/Budinger draft picks). And being a numbers geek from MIT, you just know Morey would be hooking up with the super-hot statistics professor... if he wasn't already married. Plus, I would totally believe that Morey's cell phone has entries such as "hot chick - spanish class" in it. It would just read "dumb GM - Orlando Magic" instead.
Next we have Jeff Winger's initial love interest, Britta (aka "hot chick - spanish class"):
Who else could this be but our mysterious friend, Luis Scola? Not only was Scola the very first object of Daryl Morey's affection when he took the GM job, but he's a central character in the entire plot of our season. Britta is also known as being the hot female who acts anything but feminine. Compare to Luis... who has long hair but plays anything but a finesse (feminine?) game in the paint. They may also both be closet hippies.
Of course, Britta was supposed to be the lead female character and the hottest girl in the room when the show began. Much like Luis Scola was supposed to be the best player on the Rockets when this season began. But along came Annie Edison.
And who else would be Annie but the surprising Carl Landry? Annie (Alison Brie for those rushing off to Google Images) is now the "it girl" of the show. Much like Carl Landry is the "it" player on the Rockets... being suggested for anything from "Most Improved" to "6th Man of the Year". He even got some all-star consideration. Plus, Annie is much smarter than anyone at Greendale (including Jeff Winger), but she had to go to community college instead of an ivy league school because she had some previous, ummm, issues. Compare with Carl Landry, who would have been a 1st round pick but for his knee troubles at Purdue. Plus, he probably would have been on NBA radars much sooner but for getting shot in his 2nd season. But you can't hold Annie or Carl down!
In the most surprising casting decision of the year, there's Chevy Chase as Pierce Hawthorne.
Pierce, according to his own boasting, was once a very successful business person. He's also had many prior relationships and marriages. He also thinks he is much more important than he really is. But what he says is 99% of the time hilarious. Just never for the reasons intended.
Of course, you all know where I am going with this...
Who else but Tracy McGrady would be our version of Pierce? Tracy was once very successful as a player. But he's kind of a joke now. He's also had many past relationships with teams and fans. Each of which has gone sour and led to a messy breakup. He still thinks he is far more important and indispensable than he really is. And everything he says is hilarious once you realize how out of touch he really is with how things work in the real world. Plus, just like Pierce immediately announced Jeff's supposedly secret relationship with the hot statistics professor on Twitter....... Tracy also has a habit of announcing things on his own website that were supposed to be secret. And much like how Jeff goes out of his way to not include Pierce in his life, Daryl Morey is going out of his way to keep McGrady from being a part of his team.
The only difference? I don't want Pierce to leave the show.
Next we have the character that quickly went from one-note joke to a stunningly well-rounded addition to the show, Abed:
At first, Abed was the borderline token Asperger Syndrome character. (Sidenote: when the hell did "Asperger Syndrome" become the go-to supporting character trait? Sheldon on "Big Bang Theory" nailed it without being obvious about it, and now every show has to have a character like him. Stupid...) Anyway, instead of being the creepy guy who does nothing but quote from the Breakfast Club, Abed has quickly revealed himself to have talents no one would guess he possesses. Even Troy learned that Abed is actually the best athlete in the school.
And who else has surprised us like this but Chuck Hayes. At the start of the season, Chuck was a one-note joke of a 6'6" starting center. Like Abed, he was often pushed into the background of storylines/gameplans shortly after the start of a show/game. And then... out of nowhere, we learned that Chuck Hayes could do other things. Apparently, Chuck Hayes is the best half-court shooter on the Rockets roster. (Who would have thunk it?) He's also quite nifty with his behind-the-back bounce passes in the post. And when teams underestimate him, he will take it strong right to the rim. But, like Abed's weakness in standing up to his parents... Chuck still has issues in facing his fears at the free throw line. We forgive ya though, Chuckwagon.
Next we have Troy.
Troy was a stud quarterback for his high school. But instead of going to a big football factory college, he quit playing. Only later did he realize how much he actually liked football and agreed to be the starting QB for the Greendale team. But it turns out that Troy is far, far more interested in exploring his capabilities as a tap dancer. Much to the surprise of everyone, except Pierce (who incorrectly thought it was just a brilliant way of announcing he's gay). Things also tend to wrinkle his brain on a regular basis.
Much like... Trevor Ariza. Ariza was a heavily recruited free agent this summer. But instead of going to a team that would compete for the championship in 2010, he chose the Rockets. Because he wanted to explore and experiment with his game, instead of just being a role player. Only later did he realize that his ability to make 3 pointers was directly correlated to Kobe Bryant drawing defenders away from him. Not that it has stopped him from shooting them (much like being on a terrible community college team hasn't stopped Troy from playing). And while Ariza has all the skills to be an offensive and defensive force, parts of the NBA game appear to wrinkle his brain. But, like Troy, he seems willing to work though the confusion. The future remains bright for both.
(I just don't think Carl Landry has the same kind of crush on him that Annie has on Troy)
Among the main characters in the study group, the last one is Shirley.
I still recognize Shirley from those Digiorno pizza commercials. Where she has a much bigger role (and funnier lines) than she tends to have on "Community". Shirley is a recent divorcee who went back to school to meet new people and re-start her life (which is why I can't bring myself to hate her character, as I feel sorry for her). She likes to gossip a lot though. And she's kind of intolerant to other people's religious beliefs. She doesn't really contribute much else to the show, but the woman playing Shirley was one of the more recognizable actors so she might actually make more money per epsidode than the actors who play Annie or Abed.
Clearly, she compares favorably to our own Brian Cook, who is mostly worthless. Like Shirley, Brian Cook would be better off doing pizza commercials than taking up a spot on the Rockets' roster. Since he does nothing but sit on the bench, he probably spends most of his days gossiping. He's also a recent divorcee from the Orlando Magic (as part of the Rafer deal... which is why I can't bring myself to truly hate him). Cook, however, is blocking the Rockets need to fill his roster spot with someone who actually could contribute and he probably won't take a reasonabe buyout. And he really is intolerant of stepping inside the three point line on offense. Plus, Cook is actually the third highest paid player on the active roster right now and he makes more than the real stars of the team - i.e., Carl Landry. Both may not be around for next season...
With any sitcom, there are recurring characters that aren't the sole focus of the show. They typically are less developed as characters but are great for random comedic value points.
Along those lines we have Senor Chang, known to most as the crazy naked guy from the Hangover or the King from Role Models or the insensitive doctor from Knocked Up.
As you can tell, he's an asian guy playing a Spanish teacher. As Johnnie Cochran would say: "That does not make sense!!" And yet... after 14 episodes you just start to accept it and see nothing weird about it.
Much like with our Rockets, we have Shane Battier. Who is a Duke alum. And quite possibly the whitest man alive. Even though he's not white. (Seriously though, if you ever attend a game, Battier is the goofiest guy in all the promos and he knows the theme songs to every TV show from the 70s. Including "Three's Company". Gangsta he is not.) Plus, Battier is now famous for being the no-stats All-Star. Which also does not make sense.
Battier would also give McGrady an F- for his antics this year.
Beyond Senor Chang, we have Dean Pelton, the very wacky administrator who always is trying to rope Jeff and the gang into one of his newest PC ideas to make Greendale a bigger name school.
And who else could this be but Coach Sleepy... Rick Adelman? I mean, Adelman is starting a lineup with a 6'6" center and no one taller than 6'9". And he lets a guy who can't dribble (Ariza) be the primary ballhandler on many possessions. Plus he's too busy with other things to actually pay attention to do what he's paid to do: coach the team. Adjustments? At halftime? You must be kidding me.
And yet...... when the smoke clears, both Dean Pelton and Rick Adelman seem to come out ahead. It's like there is a method to their madness and you just have to let them be. Good luck trying to explain how it works though.
Last (but not least) there is Vaughn. He was once a crush of Britta's... until she became fixated on his extremely tiny nipples. And then her gossip with Shirley ended that relationship.
Like Vaughn, our own Chase Budinger has his own weird physical flaw. He's basically an albino. It's almost creepy at times. How does a guy who went to college in Arizona have so little pigment in his skin? Much like Vaughn's nipple issue ruined things with Britta, Chase's whiteness probably forced him to drop into the 2nd round. Let's just hope that Chase doesn't spend his spare time writing songs slamming all the teams that didn't draft him. Also, Vaughn appears to be a big fan of hacky sack. And there is no way you'll ever get me to believe that volleyball-loving Chase also hasn't had a big day of hacky sack in his life.
As for the rest of the characters (for example, the counselor Dr. Ian Duncan or the "seize the day" Professor Whitman)... your suggestions and reasons in the comments below...........
Now, for those of you not watching, "Community" is on Thursdays at 7pm CST. Watch it!