Most of you embraced the contest, including one B. Jones from Pittsburgh, who dubbed me a "genius." (In fairness, I might be taking that a bit out of context, since he also called me "disgraceful" and the reason that SI is a "sick, adolescent shell of [its] former self, a Mad magazine of stupidity." Oh, that old saw!) We even heard multiple times from someone purporting to be "GREG ODEN" himself, though on closer inspection that turned out to be a quite familiar, all-caps-fancying poster who has apparently returned from the dead after a brief absence. (Had it been three days already?)
With no further adieu, the winner of the Greg Oden joke contest is ... Mark G! While I continue to be freaked out by his avatar photo, Mr. G impressed with both quality and quantity. Below are my three favorite Mark G entries. Remember, these are punch lines to complete the set-up:
"No. 1 draft pick Greg Oden will reportedly miss his entire rookie season for the Blazers after knee surgery. ______________"
Mark G's greatest hits:
· "Portland fans noted this wasn't the first time the Blazers have been screwed over by a player with a joint problem."
· "When asked his plans for filling his new-found off time, Oden replied 'WHAT?!?'"
· "The injury will, of course, leave Oden defenseless if someone tries to steal his loaf of marble rye."
Congratulations, Mark G. Due to legal restrictions regarding SI.com contests, I can only offer you my undying admiration. Please don't hock it on eBay.
Here are 10 other cracks that also made me chuckle, in no particular order. Even if you don't see your entry here, though, remember that you're all winners.
· "Realizing that Oden will now not be able to perform up to expectations, he was immediately electrocuted by Michael Vick." (jaysweet)
· "Blazers officials first learned of the injury when Oden called team headquarters and said, 'I've fallen, and I can't get up.'" (Tim in NY)
· "Portland is optimistic though because he recovered quickly from hip replacement and cataract surgeries during his brief college career." (tomorrowknows)
· "Luckily, the injury won't affect his budding shuffleboard career." (ohiojayhawk)
· "The Trailblazers were upset that Oden never disclosed that he originally injured that same knee while serving in Vietnam." (dogma)
· "Also saddened by the news are the folks at Nike, who have officially delayed release of the Air Oden Orthotics." (bruinbg03)
· "So, now he can fill in for Grady on Sanford & Son." (rock chalk)
· "This does not come as news to Bill Belichick, who had been spying on Oden's pick-up games for months." (robertroberts)
· "'This is terrible, just terrible,' said Oden pal Methuselah. 'Greg and I have been friends since we were kids!'" (K S Elwood)
· "Blazers coach Nate McMillan now wishes he had drafted Yi Jianlian -- unlike Oden, that guy pwn3d the chair in his workout session." (hoopsblogging)