Brandon Jennings, Monta Ellis and the perfect wedding

I was at a wedding this past weekend.

Honestly, it may have been the most fun I’ve had in my entire life. When one of your close friends gets married and you have a pretty tight group of friends, things can really work out well. It’s not a given though. A few things have to come together for the weekend to live up to its potential:

  • Location has to be right

I’ve had friends get married in a central location a few minutes from most of their friends. Those weddings have been fun, but if enough people have to travel just enough to feel a little bit secluded, it seems like that lets everybody let their guard down a bit more. A hotel room is license for debauchery. The more people can let their guard down, the less you have those awkward groupings of people sitting off by themselves and the more everyone gets to know everyone else.

And If you have the reception at a hotel that has a club ready and waiting for you when the reception lets out, then you’re really doing it right. Everyone can have a great time, continue to have a great time and then stumble up to their room until someone terrifies them by knocking on their door at 3 in the morning because he’s drunk and lost.

  • It’s got to be the right fit

Some people dig slideshows. Some people dig the classic bouquet toss and garter stuff. But a lot of people don’t. If the bride and groom aren’t into it, just dump it. Trust me, there are more than enough traditions in the ceremony. After that, everything has to be tailored to the needs of the bride … and to a lesser extent the groom. If they want to get out on the floor, everything needs to get moving as fast as possible to make that happen.

  • Huge dance floor

That’s where we all want to be, right? The bigger the better. I should at this point admit I’m a terrible dancer. But I’m a willing one. You live only once (That’s what I say here, right?).

But most importantly: Everyone there has to be rooting for both the bride and groom.

Sounds obvious enough, doesn’t it? Yet I’ve been at numerous weddings where people didn’t care for one or the other and sometimes both. This world is a political one and it’s not necessarily just the people we love around us when we make the big commitment. If everything lines up right though and it works out that the new Mr. and Mrs. are hanging out exclusively with people who absolutely want to see them be happy forever and have the greatest time of their life, then things can get pretty special.

I think what put this past weekend over the edge was an uncommon unity amongst everyone in attendance that these two getting together was awesome. And if those two were going to be awesome, it was on us to raise our own awesome games.

It’s all about the two people out in front of the whole thing … and that’s where I dial this back in and talk about what Brandon Jennings said the other day.

The rookie Jennings destroying the Pistons and loving it. (Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)

“But I think everybody thinks we can’t win together. That’s going to be one of our biggest challenges. I’m up for it and I know he is.”

For now, he and Monta Ellis are hitched up. We don’t know what waits for us around the corner of next year, but we know the Bucks are going to rely on those two to take charge most nights, certainly on offense, but as Dan Devine pointed out earlier today, they will need some help to set the tone defensively. Now that Ellis will have a full Scott Skiles training camp under his belt he might figure out how to reign in his ball hawking and stay in front of opposing guards. Sam Dalembert, Joel Przybilla and John Henson could help where Drew Gooden failed last year as well.

But as I pointed out earlier on Twitter, I don’t think anyone thinks that the Jennings/Ellis combo can’t win. It’s just that many of us doubt that they can front a team that can do some significant damage. Jennings has been here before. We didn’t necessarily think that Jennings and Andrew Bogut could do much either.

After a couple months of jelling, I’d like to think that team a few years back really did staart to believe in the rookie version of Jennings and a coming into his own Bogut. Jennings struggled after his historic first month absolutely, but he had an energy that his teammates fed off. Most importantly he had another guy that was pretty damn good. Bogut’s defense and emerging offense combined with Jennings confidence really seemed to fuel those “Fear the Deer” Bucks. Everyone trusted each other and followed the lead of Bogut when it came to defense and Jennings when it came to attitude.

Those two didn’t seem to have a lot of help either, but that team was turned out to be greater than the sum of its parts. Guys like Luke Ridnour, John Salmons and Carlos Delfino had the roles that they must have been waiting for their whole lives. They thrived. Career years all around.

Maybe they just believed in the guys that were leading the way, the way we all believed in the bride and groom Saturday night. We don’t really know what makes a basketball play max out on his ability and buy into something bigger than himself. It sure is fun to watch when it happens though.

And I’d like to think we’re due for some fun here.

Jeremy Schmidt knows that YOLO, despite his joke earlier. Follow him on Twitter.

Categories: Bucks Player Features

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  1. I would hate for them to get divorced and fight over who has to take custody of Drew Gooden

  2. Same here! On a side note I met and asked Jennings last Friday what he was working on in the off-season and he said he was working on adding a Steve Nash runner to his game. Said he was going to unveil that next season. 

  3. According to 100 experts over on ESPN (, the Bucks are expected to again finish 9th in the East this year, and with a worse winning percentage, to boot.  These experts also predict the Celtics (older and less Ray Allen-y) and Knicks to be better than last year’s versions.  And among lottery teams in the East, Milwaukee and Detroit are the only two teams predicted to be worse this year than last year.  Finally, these experts foresee the #2 team in the east finishing with 50 wins and the #7 team finishing with 45 wins… and then a huge drop off to 40 wins for #8 (Hawks) and 37 wins for the #9 Bucks.  I find all of the above interesting (in the questionable sort of way).  I guess if anything, I’d expect the East to have strong teams through the eighth and ninth spots, mainly because I don’t think the Hawks did enough go from a .606 team to a .488 team and I’m not really following how the Bucks got worse.

      •  @JustinNixon care to explain what you disagree with? His last statement? I personally think its ridiculous that the celtics are projected #2 in the east. Furthermore, I dont think the Bulls are a 4 seed. The east is a crapshoot that is, in my opinion, pretty difficult to predict. also – how did the  bucks get worse? They added a center, and lost delfino. Delfino is not more valuable than a center. (perhaps you think the rest of the league got better, and the bucks stagnated, but I dont buy it). 

    • PattiRafalskiDavison

       @andyxc13 When you don’t know what you are talking about, you just guess the team will stay where they were.  I read another “analysis” that said Bucks will stay same because they lost the offense contribution of Bogut this year.  Sure, Bogut contributed on offense, but last year he only played 12 games and Bucks didn’t have legit center to stop opponents from scoring at will.  On the bright side, if all the other teams think Bucks are same team, it could be another Fear the Deer year!

  4. Nice article! but now i cant help but imagining jennings or ellis in a wedding dress. yikes! (shivers)