Classic card of the week

Luc Longley, 1999 Upper Deck

Let us begin:

With three championship rings on his fingers

He probably doesn’t wear them all the time. You could just say "With three championship rings..." because, ya' know, we're aware of where rings are supposed to go. I am very irritable today.

After only seven years in the league,

Weird thing to say considering the three titles had just happened, all in a row. Why even mention the four non-championship years? That would be like me winning back-to-back-to-back fantasy baseball championships and then bragging, “Hey, I’ve won three titles this decade,” instead of just calling myself three-time defending champion. (Which I’m not, in case you’re wondering. It’s just a hypothetical example, starring me. Although I have won three titles this decade -- well, last decade, I guess -- which is something I’ve been dying to casually mention somewhere without coming across as self-serving. So there, I think that worked.)

one might expect the Bulls’ Luc Longley to lose his inner drive to reach new heights.

Indeed, after the 1997-98 Chicago Bulls had won their third consecutive title, and sixth in the previous eight years, the major storyline around Chicago and also nationally was: Will Luc Longley lose his inner drive, which will prevent him from reaching new heights? You could not open a newspaper or turn on the television without seeing some feature that aimed to speculate whether or not Luc Longley would lose his inner drive, rendering him unable to reach new heights. Those new heights being: something better than a championship? It’s difficult to say. The point is: He did not lose his inner drive. Or did he?

The 1997-98 season proved once again, however, that this couldn’t be further from the truth.

First of all, the 1997-98 season was one of those championship years, so it really only seems warranted to question Luc Longley’s inner drive after that season. For what it’s worth, Luc Longley’s points-per-game average dropped almost three points during the 1998-99 season. Was he drunk off success? Probably. He also could have been wearing his rings, which makes playing basketball more difficult.

With the big Aussie in the middle, Chicago can expect to once again challenge for the NBA crown this season.

No they can’t. And I say that regardless of the potential of Luc Longley being able to reach new heights, but it should be mentioned that Longley himself was not even a member of the 1998-99 Bulls. Where did this card get its info from, Wikipedia? Speaking of:

Longley spent two lackluster seasons with Phoenix, where he gained less attention for his play than for being stung twice by a scorpion while sitting on the floor of his home sorting through his CD collection.

Damn scorpions! That's what you get for alphabetizing your CDs, ya' big Aussie.

In December 2009 Longley, who had participated in marine conservation efforts before, named a newly discovered shrimp species Lebbeus clarehanna after his 15-year-old daughter, Clara Hanna Longley.

New heights? Reached.

Did you know?
Longley, always modest, once kindly and partially credited his teammates with playing a small role in the success of the mid-to-late 90s Chicago Bulls.