Monday, June 30, 2008

The next great 88

What do Michael Irvin, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Eric Lindros, Marvin Harrison and Nicolas Batum have in common? The number 88. The double snowman. One of only two jersey numbers that reads the same forwards, backwards, right-side up and up-side down. The atomic number of radium. The number of keys on a piano (thank you Wikipedia). The speed Doc Brown's DeLorean must reach in order to kick the flux capacitor into gear and thus, achieve time travel.

Nicolas Batum will wear No. 88 next season (assuming he makes the roster). It's a bit of a strange number for a basketball player to choose (or to at least have assigned to you). He has worn No. 8 before (though he currently wears No. 5 for Le Mans), so maybe No. 88 is a takeoff of that. It's a common number for a tight end, but for a basketballer? In fact, according to Basketball Reference.com, Antoine Walker is the only NBA player to have ever worn No. 88, and that was only for one season. So if nothing else, Nic Batum will be an original.

And thanks to the scarcity of the number and the French fanbase, Batum will most likely have the best selling No. 88 jersey in the history of the NBA. There's a feather for your cap.

6 comments:

coolness said...

Hey I would love to know what number Jerryd Bayless is wearing next season. I bet you could get that info Casey =P thanks

the dUbsackhustla said...

Casey, I'm pretty sure it's 'Nicolas', not 'Nicholas' as posted above. Drop the H. Just a heads up from your favorite frog. - knucks

NateDogg said...

Casey, 1 of 2 numbers the same forward, backward, and upside down? What about just 8, or 1, and 11? Just playing I know you've been working hard. I saw L.A. made the Olympic pratice squad, It has to be a good thing to be surrounded by that much talent in the off season, good for him. Do you think it's a good thing to have Nate M. as an assistant coach for the USA squad, or does it distract from what's going on back home? Lastly, I like coach K. don't get me wrong, but why is a college coach in charge of pro players? He had some major slip ups in the 04' games in my opinion and he is in love with Carmelo for some reason.

Casey Holdahl said...

You're right about 8 Nate, but I don't count 1. An upside down 1 looks more like a cursive T.

I think it's good to have both Nate and LaMarcus involved in Team USA Basketball. Nate can't really do a lot with the Blazers until training camp, so he' better served by getting the experience. Aldridge playing against the best players in the world has advantages that don't need to be explained.

As far as Coach K, that does seem like a strange pick. You would think a college coach would need to be out recruiting. It would probably be best to have a coach with pro experience who's only job is coaching the national team, similar to how coaches for national soccer teams only coach that one team.

Paul J said...

Ok but don't forget 0 and 00. (Side question: if you can have 00, can you have something like 04 or 07?)

Casey Holdahl said...

0 was the other of the two jersey's I was thinking of paul.

If I had a single digit number, I think I'd want a 0 added as well.