The NBA playoffs are one of the most entertaining times of the year, and although superstars shine brightly in their spotlight, I can’t help but stare at those guys who fill out the last few seats of an NBA bench.
Two guys stand out to me in particular: Raul Neto and Matt Barnes.
Raul Neto is a 6’1 Brazilian back up point guard for the Utah Jazz who wishes he were Ricky Rubio (HAHAHAHA). The interesting thing about Neto is you will usually see him enter the game at some point, which is a rarity for Matt Barnes. He has appeared in every postseason game for the Jazz and played a career high 14 minutes in game six against the Clippers. Last season he actually started 53 games for Utah. He’s your typical overseas guy: overly skilled with a tremendous basketball IQ and a ratchet. I would comment on the gooney nature of Neto off the court, but his antics are about as exciting as Utah’s nightlife. If you get the chance, Google Raul Neto, and you will find a handsome young man who probably fucks.
Next up is Matt Barnes, an absolute fucking lunatic. He’s been on 9 NBA teams, drove 95 miles to beat Derek Fisher’s ass, and usually lurks on a corner 3 in garbage time. He kind of reminds me of Kendrick Perkins, a guy who just is on the team to stir controversy and get your NBA franchise in the news for all the wrong reasons. In February, Barnes was arrested on misdemeanor assault for allegedly choking out a women and punching out her boyfriend. He even cussed out Suns owner Rob Sarver in 2015.
Matt Barnes is your NBA journeyman with a checkered past, but he checks off all the boxes when evaluating a goon. He will foul you hard. He will talk trash. He will pull on your shorts and whisper in your ear. He will make you feel uncomfortable. But hey look where he is now, back with the Warriors, waving the towel and vying for his first NBA championship ring in the Bay Area. When Matt Barnes enters the game, just know its not meaningful, but rather a sign of a large margin of victory or defeat. Matt Barnes and Raul Neto, you are first-team All-NBA goons.
And don’t think I forgot about you Mr. JR Smith…