Larry Coon in the N.Y. Times
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DancingBarry
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 12, 2009 11:44 pm    Post subject: Larry Coon in the N.Y. Times

Larry is featured in the NY Times. Props to him for all he does for NBA fans, not to mention LG. Good read.

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Quote:

Got a Question About the N.B.A. Salary Cap? He’s Your Man.

By HOWARD BECK
Published: January 12, 2009

The world is filled with great mysteries that tease and confound the human mind: Stonehenge, Area 51, the United States tax code. Archaeologists can explain the rocks, Fox Mulder tackled the extraterrestrials, and accountants will translate your 1040.

But where do you turn when confronted with the great riddles of the N.B.A. salary cap? Where is the sage who can explain the implications of base-year compensation, Bird rights and the over-36 rule? Who can save curious fans and callow sportswriters from total madness?

This awesome task falls to a middle-aged computer scientist with a passion for basketball and a knack for decoding legal minutiae. Larry Coon, 46, writes, edits and manages NBA Salary Cap FAQ (cbafaq.com) — perhaps the only Web site devoted solely to the cap, in all its arcane beauty.

Fans and bloggers flock to the site in search of enlightenment. It is bookmarked on every beat reporter’s laptop. In the modern N.B.A., Coon is cited more frequently than Naismith.

“A godsend,” said Sam Amick, who covers the Sacramento Kings for The Sacramento Bee.

The collective bargaining agreement is 425 pages of legalese, jargon and run-on sentences, a dizzying compendium of decades of negotiations between the N.B.A. and the players union. It describes the salary cap, exceptions to the cap and exceptions to those exceptions. It was written by lawyers and seemingly for lawyers...


...Coon is not a lawyer, just a lifelong Los Angeles Lakers fan with an inquisitive mind, an eye for detail and enough spare hours to make sense of the nonsensical.

“I’ve been told by lawyers many times that I think like a lawyer,” said Coon, an information technology director at California-Irvine. “I don’t know if that was an insult or not.”

He first compiled the FAQ (frequently asked questions) in 1999, and has updated it periodically since then, making his biggest changes in 2005, when the last C.B.A. was adopted.

“Part of it’s just a fastidious nature, and being a voracious reader,” Coon said of his motivation. “You just slowly accumulate knowledge, and eventually you get to the point where you’re reading stuff in the media and stuff is conflicting.”

Coon’s work has endeared him to reporters for years. He estimates that he has answered 3,000 cap-related e-mail messages in the last 10 years. Inquiries usually spike around the February trading deadline and the July free-agency period.

Fans debating the merits of rumored trades cite Coon in online forums. Reporters call when they need clarification on a sticky issue — like the recent flap over Darius Miles’s comeback and its effect on the Portland Trail Blazers’ cap.

The FAQ has been called the C.B.A. Bible, and its author was once dubbed Professor Coon by ESPN.com’s Marc Stein — a Coon devotee. The site has been cited in law journals and reviews...


...“We believe things like this that generate fan interest are good for the league,” said Joel Litvin, the president for league and basketball operations.

The players union posts the complete C.B.A. on its Web site. But for an explanation, the union simply posts a link to Coon’s site.

“Without prior experience with it, you’re just completely lost,” said Amick, who began covering the Kings four years ago. “Somewhere along the line, you discover Larry’s resource.”

Most teams and major player agents employ “capologists” to help interpret the rules. The N.B.A. employs an army of lawyers. Coon studies the cap as a hobby, which prompts question: How does he know he is right?

“The best answer is I have access to some authoritative sources,” said Coon, describing a network of cap experts inside and outside of the league, some who advise him and some who consult him....



A version of this article appeared in print on January 13, 2009, on page B13 of the New York edition.

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Vadorojo
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 12, 2009 11:49 pm    Post subject:

Wow impressive stuff! Glad to see our P&G-touting cap expert getting some love! A lot of love, in fact!
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10scott10
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 12, 2009 11:51 pm    Post subject:

well all i got to say, is that i can only hope to know as much about the cap as him.
and if he has a good IT job, that too.
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uberzev
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 12, 2009 11:52 pm    Post subject:

Our boy has grown so fast!

Congrats Larry!
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lakez34
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 12, 2009 11:57 pm    Post subject:

Big ups to him... this is pretty cool
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:04 am    Post subject: Re: Larry Coon in the N.Y. Times

DancingBarry wrote:
Larry is featured in the NY Times. Props to him for all he does for NBA fans, not to mention LG. Good read.

Full Article: LINK


What!!??! Why did he not mention LG?




I kid. I kid.


Way to go Larry!!
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:08 am    Post subject:

Well deserved recognition. Larry and his FAQ are very helpful.
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thegreatest
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:17 am    Post subject:


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:18 am    Post subject:

Quote:
Fans and bloggers flock to the site in search of enlightenment. It is bookmarked on every beat reporter’s laptop. In the modern N.B.A., Coon is cited more frequently than Naismith.

“A godsend,” said Sam Amick, who covers the Sacramento Kings for The Sacramento Bee.


That's saying a whole LOT right there.


Pardon the double post, but MAJOR, MAJOR props to you LC. Your work is recognized and appreciated worldwide, as it should be. Keep doing your thang. We're rooting for you!
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:41 am    Post subject:

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 12:43 am    Post subject:

Congratulations Larry. You do a great job.
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OregonLakerGuy
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 1:20 am    Post subject:

Cool stuff Larry. Congrats.
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 1:37 am    Post subject:

Very cool. Congrats Larry!
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 2:08 am    Post subject:

Nice stache Coon! You deserve this..way to go!
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mhan00
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 2:08 am    Post subject:

Larry Coon is the man.
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ahyiah
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 2:44 am    Post subject:

wow congrats. i didnt even know he worked at my undergrad! who knows, maybe i passed him while walking to class one day.. haha

small world
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Trey
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 2:56 am    Post subject:

that feels really great...

So happy to see him get the props and accolades he deserves

/congratulate Larry
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Omar Little
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 3:13 am    Post subject:

He was recently cited for the umpteenth time on ESPN as well. Props Larry!

I have been thinking of doing the same thing for baseball, BTW. It is, however, a lot easier:

1. Yankees sign everyone they want.
2. Boston picks through the leftovers.
3. Everyone else continues to develop talent for 1 and 2.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 4:16 am    Post subject:

Well done Larry Legend.
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 4:26 am    Post subject:

To be fair, who hasn't had an article written about them in the NY Times?


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BigE32
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 4:45 am    Post subject:

Congrats, Larry!
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 4:54 am    Post subject:

Congrats, LarryCoon!!
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Rick12322
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 6:37 am    Post subject:

big props Larry, you da man!
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oldschool32
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 6:42 am    Post subject:

Props L.C.!
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LarryCoon
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2009 6:43 am    Post subject:

Thanks all for the kind words. It was a lot of fun, and it's satisfying to see my work featured in the "Paper of Record."

Flo'z -- I -did- mention LG, but it was a 90 minute interview, and I guess an important detail or two is going to slip through the cracks....
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