That's Amare: It looks like Amare Stoudemire is having arthroscopic knee surgery today. The Suns are insisting that this is a simple procedure, and that Stoudemire will (probably) miss only two to three weeks and still be ready for the season opener on November 1. It's a pretty ominous portent for the Suns' championship aspirations, though. Kind of like the how the human finger I found in my Fruity Pebbles this morning was a portent of a bad breaksfast. Anyway, think the Suns want to punch Shawn Marion's "Get Out Of Phoenix Free" card now? Sorry, Lakers fans; you won't be getting Marion of the Suns' value menu.

Free Agent Jackpot: Apparently, Gilbert Arenas isn't that impressed by the Celtics' offseason moves. In fact, he's predicting imminent doom when the Wizards travel to Boston for the C's home opener. That's because Washington countered the Kevin Garnette / Ray Allen acquisitions by signing their own "Little Three": The pitifully ancient and herertofore retired Tony Massenburg, Jamon Gordon (who?), and Willie Deane (who??).

For the record, Massenburg last played in 2004-05, averaging 3.2 points and 2.7 rebounds in 37 games for the Spurs. But I hear he waves a mean towel, so good pickup for the Wiz. Gordon is an undrafted rookie from Virginia Tech; he averaged 11.4 PPG, 4.5 RPG, and 4.5 APG as a senior last year. (Did you hear that? It's the sound of nobody in Boston giving a crap.) Most mystifying of all is the Deane signing. He graduated from Purdue in 2003 but went undrafted. According to his NBA.com prospect profile, Deane 17.8 PPG and 5.1 RPG during his senior season, and even "erupted" for a career-high 36 points against Michigan. Impressive. I doubt he'll play much, but having an extra "Willie" on your roster never hurts.

Michael Jordan has the power: BusinessWeek released a list of the 100 Most Powerful People in Sports. NBA commissioner David Stern came in third, behind both NFL commissioner Roger Goodell (1) and Tiger Woods (2). No surprises there. What did come as a surprise is that Michael Jordan was number 11.

Jordan is a part owner and "Managing Member of Basketball Operations" for the Charlotte Bobcats. Let me highlight the "Charlotte Bobcats" part of that last sentence. That kind of "power" wouldn't get you a handout on the street, even if you were missing both legs and had a sign that said "Jesus luvs you." It's also important to note that, after Jordan was fired by the Washington Wizards, no legitimate NBA would touch him with a 10-meter cattle prod. Make no mistake: Charlotte hired him because they needed money and Jordan had it to spend. The power he wields within the confines of his sport is negligible at best.

But according to BusinessWeek: "No athlete -- active or retired -- has a higher Q Score than his Airness." The Q Score is a way to measure the familiarity and appeal of a brand, company, celebrity, cartoon character or television show. So okay, Jordan can sell stuff; we already knew that. But how, exactly, does that translate to power in sports? Remember, this is the same guy who drafted Kwame Brown and Adam Morrison, failed spectacularly as both a player and an executive for the Wizards, and didn't even get voted onto the All-Star team during his final "farewell tour" season. That all sounds pretty weak to me.

Other notable NBA power brokers: Lebron James (19), Jerry Reinsdorf (47), Mark Cuban (50), Shaq (78), Kobe Bryant (88), Yao Ming (89), and Magic Johnson (95).

hejordan
"Hey, I look...pretty gay right now."

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