With the weather getting colder and the holiday season fast approaching, I am eagerly anticipating the traditional holiday gorge-fest followed closely by the annual projectile-vomiting and a little football. However I am having a hankering for something just a little different than the usual turkey this year. I am having a serious craving for a little squirrel. Not just any squirrel, not any water-skiing squirrel or cutesy Rocky and Bullwinkle type squirrel, and certainly not any of the angry Russian squirrels which recently made news when they tore apart a stray dog!
The internet is chock-full of mouth-watering squirrel recipes for that special day, such as Chicken fried squirrel, squirrel cacciatore, fried squirrel with mushroom gravy, and then a heaping slice of squirrel pie alamode for you sweet-tooth junkies, to cap off a perfect day. However, New Jersey recently issued warnings not to eat any of the little guys found near “toxic waste dumps” because they might be “contaminated by lead”, The warning has since been retracted, but I think a good rule to live by would be to not eat anything found near a “toxic waste dump”, unless of course you’re at the EnergySolutions Arena. (just kidding Larry) And if one still insists on getting their rodent or varmint freak on, at least do so responsibly, for “if the squirrel is green and glowing, just keep on going”.
The squirrel I am interested in is not a delicacy and is not part of the menu. He is 5-foot-5 and can bench press over 300 lbs. He averaged over 14 points a game last season while backing up Allen Iverson and Mo Williams. I am talking about Earl “The Squirrel” Boykins. Last season Earl opted out of his contract with the the Bucks, hoping for more bucks, but it didn’t quite work out as planned. For now he is sitting patiently by the phone, on a big stack of phone books, waiting for a call.
Why would a 7-2 Jazz team need any help? In nine games, the Jazz duo responsible for backing up Deron Williams has scored a grand total of 22 points at a .250 clip. In Earl’s last game for Milwaukee, he poured in 28 by himself. He had 36 points twice last season. At the current rate, it would take our two back-ups at point almost half the season to get 36.
All it takes is a look at the two Jazz losses this season and the games that went down to a last shot to see that there could be potential trouble ahead. Obviously the defense, or a lack thereof, played a huge part in those games but lack of offense from our guards off the bench made things much worse. Against Houston and the Lakers, all Jazz guards off the bench only mustered 2 points total for both games! In the two close wins against Cleveland and Seattle the guards off the bench contributed 7 points total. Jason Hart or Ronnie Price are probably great guys and might yet work things out, but Earl has proven over and over that he can light up the scoreboard.
When Boykins was 3 he was so small his dad would carry him to the rec center in a duffel bag. He has been mistaken for ball boys and always gets carded at NBA arenas where security guards don’t believe he is a player. He may be small but a few years ago he had 12 blocks one season which is 4 more than 6-11 center Jarron Collins had last season. He shot over 39% on 3-point shots and 89% from the free throw line and made ‘only’ $2.95 million last season which is what Larry makes in hot dog sales alone. I think he would love to play for a contender if given the chance.
If we don’t get him, I am sure the Jazz will still be a very good team, win 54 games and quite a few playoff games but if the ultimate goal is to win a championship, I think we could use a ‘little help’ from The Squirrel.