Dear Santa: My favorite NBA team really stinks


The NBA Northwest teams join together as they write a letter to Santa, with Christmas just days away 

Letters to Santa are usually scribbled well before the big guy fires up the sleigh and clears the driveway for take-off. Better late than never though, right?

Dear Santa,

As you know, it’s not easy being a fan of a Northwest Division NBA team this season, with the exception of Portland, of course.

This is the only division, after all, in which most of its clubs are competing for last place in the Western Conference. 

It’s also the only division where playing .500 ball could earn you a ticker tape parade. In Portland, where their Trail Blazers would need to have a meltdown to fall below .500, they’re already mapping out the parade route.

Dec 17, 2014; Portland, OR, USA; Portland Trail Blazers head coach Terry Stotts speaks with Portland Trail Blazers guard

Damian Lillard

(0) during the third quarter of the game against the Milwaukee Bucks at the Moda Center at the Rose Quarter. Mandatory Credit: Steve Dykes-USA TODAY Sports

This might be as good as it gets.

In Oklahoma City, fans are hopeful that their once mighty Thunder can crack the playoffs. When this rejuvenated squad put up 40 in the first quarter against Golden State this past week, I thought we just might have a Christmas miracle on our hands.

In case there was any doubt about it, star forward Kevin Durant sugar coated the occasion with 30 points in 18 just minutes of play. Then he limped to the sideline with a sprained ankle and for an early egg nog. 

Durant will be okay, but with the Thunder on the cusp of a .500 record, you have to wonder if OKC has any good will on its side. At least their stars lead the league in fashion points.

On one hand, the gladiator-like return of Durant and point guard Russell Westbrook was too good to be true, because suddenly we had two of the most explosive players in the league ready to devour a shortened season like a fat kid on a gingerbread cookie.

At the time of writing this, OKC are 8-2 in their last 10 games, charging at the Blazers as if that pinwheel logo was a target. Forgive me for sounding like Hubie Brown for a second Santa, but if I’m Portland, I’m not liking what I’m seeing right now.

They need some luck for Christmas.

Then on the other hand, are the Thunder’s two superstars having to work doubly hard just to keep this team afloat?

Perhaps the team most in need of holiday cheer is Minnesota, who have won just one game in their last 10 outings. There they are, like lone Wolves, scrapping for a morsel of positivity at the bottom of the division.

It might be hard to hear the alarm bells over the sleigh variety, but trust me they’re ringing with Zach LaVine and Mo Williams running the floor.

I’ve said it before but I wish Ricky Rubio was back already. What do you say, Santa?

Oct 30, 2014; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves guard

Ricky Rubio

(9) dribbles the ball down the court in the second half against the Detroit Pistons at Target Center. The Timberwolves won 97-91. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

In spite of a poor record, one of the worst in the NBA, I still like watching the Utah Jazz because they have such a young and versatile roster.

I only wish they were more consistent. 

Some nights the 3’s fall and they win, and on many others, they skid off the rim like Clark Griswold’s greased up sled from an icy slope. Hey, it’s bound to happen when you have as many as five or six guys hoisting up long balls.

Meanwhile, Denver has fought back to some respectability lately, by standing on the tree-like shoulders of their set-up man Ty Lawson. The issue, though, might be who he’s setting up.

They’re a sprightly group against weaker opponents, but less so against more formidable clubs like the Hawks, Rockets and Raptors. True to form, they’re also most comfortable at home. I guess we all are this time of year.

Listen, it’d be great if the Nuggies held onto early leads, but I just wish they had those rainbow unis again Santa, at least for the holidays.


A Hopeful Fan

Next: Thunder-struck: Russell Westbrook, The NBA's Fastest Player