I've found myself interested in the NBA regular season this year as never before. Something about the number of fine teams in the West, all bunched together, along with the huge trades has me captivated. I'm so intrigued by Shaq's arrival in Phoenix that I went out of my way on Saturday to watch their game against the Celtics at a Louisville sports bar. I love Baron Davis, Stephen Jackson, and Monta Ellis of Golden State. I'm finding that my affection for the tragically underloved Spurs has been rekindled as well. And today's news of Yao Ming's season-ending injury has the gears in my head turning double time.