of Mo Bamba and Jonathan Isaac have given the Orlando Magic a buzz, Mike Bianchi writes.
Running off at the typewriter … Do you sense it, Orlando? Can you feel it? Do you hear it? It’s a buzz, I’m telling you — a real, live, honest-to-goodness, bona fide buzz for the Orlando Magic’s two young big men: Jonathan Isaac and Mo Bamba.
At first I didn’t believe it was there, but if you stand real still and listen real close, you can definitely hear it. In fact, after more careful examination with precise scientific equipment, I have confirmed there is the slightest seismic shift in the attitude of Magic fans due to the excitement created by Isaac and Bamba during the NBA Summer League in Vegas.
Headline at Yahoo.com: “Mo Bamba, Jonathan Isaac are latest hope for Magic: They
feel a buzz in Orlando.”
Headline at the Ringer.com: “Jonathan Isaac Could Be the One to Break the Magic Curse.”
Fans on social media are even starting to come up with nicknames for the two players with the wide wingspans:
“Charismatic Condors” “Magic MoJo” “The SWAT Team.”
I know, I know, it’s only summer league, when most team rosters are filled with players who won’t even be in the the NBA next year. Who cares? After six debilitating years of miserable losing, Magic fans will take their buzz wherever and whenever they can get it.
SHORT STUFF: Speaking of the Magic, they have rightfully decided to suspend business relations with Papa John’s after the pizza company chairman’s use of a racial slur. Meanwhile, Orlando City has not yet decided whether to cut ties after Papa John’s founder and chairman of the board John Schnatter resigned after Forbes reported he used the N-word during a company conference call. Believe it or not, the conference call was being held to — wait for it — discuss how to avoid bad publicity. Personally, if I were running a sports franchise, I would cut ties with Papa John’s for two reasons — (1) Bad PR and (2) Worse pizza. …
The fact that Croatia, a country of 4 million people, can make the World Cup final and the United States, a country of 325 million people, can’t even make the tournament is our biggest national embarrassment since Paris
Hilton. …Hey, we wanted the Orlando City Lions to make history this year, right? Well, they have — for all the wrong reasons. Never in the annals of MLS has a team posted six straight victories and followed it up by a losing streak that has lasted nine matches, seven weeks and three coaches. … What a week it’s been for Tim
Tebow, who hit a double in the Eastern League All-Star Game, got announced for the Florida Gators Ring of Honor and was revealed to be dating Miss Universe 2017. Could it be that the reason there are so many Tebow critics is because the haters are simply jealous of Timmy’s greatness — and his goodness? … After I went on the Paul
Finebaum Show earlier this week to talk about UCF and McKenzie Milton’s Heisman campaign, national radio host and college football commentator Tim Brando tweeted at me: “Bianchi was spoton with Finebaum. McKenzie Milton is a legitimate Heisman contender and begins as the leader in the clubhouse before we kick this year. Not a great year for QBs, but this kid is special.” … Did you see where FIFA, in an effort to tackle sexism in soccer, wants to crack down on its TV partners’ penchant for showing crowd shots of “hot women” at World Cup games? My question: Does anybody even know what qualifies as sexism in today’s ultra-sensitive world? Coming soon: Thought police try to get
Roy Orbison’s “Pretty Woman” retroactively banned for being an ode to the misogynistic objectification of the female population. …
Speaking of sexism, can you believe new Carolina Panthers owner David
Tepper is “contractually obligated” to keep a 13-foot-high statue of former owner and team founder Jerry Richardson, who sold the team amid reports of sexual and racial misconduct? Maybe there should be a Statue of Liberty-like plaque at the base of Richardson’s statue: “Give me your bigots, your chauvinists and your sexual harassers.” … The Magic’s Aaron Gordon says his new four-year $76-millon deal “brought tears to my eyes.” This, ladies and gentlemen, is the first confirmed case of someone who actually was crying all the way to the bank. … Earlier this week, the Tampa Bay Rays unveiled an extensive plan for a new $900 million stadium with a translucent dome to be built in the Ybor City section of Tampa. The stadium plan, of course, left out one important piece of information: Who’s going to pay for it? Details, details!
LAST WORD: In honor of the World Cup final on Sunday, let us all remember this quote from author unknown: “Life is like a game of soccer. You need goals. If there are no goals in your life, then you can’t win.”
Buzz is building for Mo Bamba, right, and Jonathan Isaac.
Magic big man Jonathan Isaac is grabbing attention as he and Mo Bamba put on a show at the Summer League.