Bored announcers: From Basketbawful reader Nick: "I was watching the Suns-Nets game last night. During the game, the announcers got bored and started drawing on the screen (see above). You can see the clip on NBA League Pass (free to sign up until November 11th) on NBA.com. It occurs after the ad break, before the free throws, with 2:31 left in the first quarter." Nick was also kind enough to provide the accompanying dialogue. Update! The announcers have been credibly identified as Marv Albert and Mike Fratello by TehJay: "I can confirm that it was Marv, I watched this sequence happen. It was even more hilarious than it seems in text. Marv didn't really know how to react to the Czar's etch-a-sketches. He sounded like he was patronizing a little kid."
Marv Albert: It's time for our J&R Music and Computer World Upcoming Schedule. Following tonight, the Nets will finish up the home stands...that's, uh, very lovely. On friday night against Allen Iverson and the Detroit...what is that?
Mike Fratellow It's a car.
Marv Oh, Motor City, oh I got it.
Mike: It's a car.
Marv: So clever. You think about this for long periods of time? And then at Miami on...at Indiana on Saturday, I'm sorry.
Mike: I didnt want to throw you off.
Marv: I, I know.
Marv: All right. Indiana, what do they get? What's that? That's very creative. What is that? Is that a building?
Mike: It's a building.
Marv: For Indianapolis?
Mike: It is.
Marv: And then at Miami on Monday night.
Mike: You know Miami gets, they get another, ohh yeahhh.
Marv: Oh very cute, yeah, all right and then back home for the Pacers next Wednesday. but frankly we've seen enough.
Marv: The J&R Music and Computer World Upcoming Schedule. The Nets playing four games in five nights.
Mike: I was trying to think of how to draw a hurricane for Miami, not sure how to do that.
Marv: I'm sure you'll come up with something. Iittle box for the city of Indianapolis
Broadcasting action. It's BLAND-tastic. (Actually, I have to admit, this was pretty funny...)
The New Jersey Nets' defense: The only thing in New Jersey that was worse than the announcers' banter was the Nets' D. The Suns shot 63 percent from the field (43-for-68) and 67 percent from downtown (12-for-18). And, as Basketbawful reader Garron pointed out, they hit 77 percent of their shots (23-for-30) in the first half! The only reason that New Jersey kept it close in those opening two quarters was because Phoenix committed 16 first-half turnovers, which led to 14 points for the Nets. Once the Suns stopped bumbling the ball away -- they had only 4 turnovers in the second half -- the game turned into a laugher. Memo to the Nets players: It's called "a hand in the face," guys. You should really try it some time.
The New Jersey Nets' offense: Sure, they scored 55 points in the first half, but 14 of those points were handed to them by the Suns on a silver turnover platter. In the second half, New Jersey scored 31 points...and only 9 in the fourth quarter. For the game, the Nets shot 33 percent (28-for-83). Oh, and as was mentioned above, this was a home game.
Random aside: The Suns are actually playing defense this season. It's not just a rumor. I don't think I've ever seen Steve Nash work so hard to stay in front of his man. And Shaq was really closing off the paint in the first quarter. Phoenix still isn't a great defensive team by any stretch of the imagination, but at least they're trying. Well, except for Amare Stoudemire, who let rookie Ryan Anderson walk right by him. Amare's like a dog...he can't walk sideways.
The Lopez twins: This game featured the first pro matchup between the Lopez twins -- Brook of the Nets and Robin of the Suns. They each finished with 2 points and combined to shoot 2-for-10 from the field. Oh, and Brook committed 4 turnovers. This is what I imagine would have happened if Greg Ostertag had a twin and they played against each other. While dressed as giant pieces of fruit.
This was the first of many Titanic clashes. And
when I say "Titanic," I mean like the ship.
Yao Ming: The Great Wall scored 8 points on 4-for-14 shooting. He never got to the line, collected zero assists, turned the ball over twice, and had three of his shots blocked. Or (as Basketbawful reader Michael pointed out) four, if you count the dunk he clanked off the rim...again. Has Yao jumped off the ground this season? Has anyone actually seen him do it? I mean, at one point, Glen "Big Baby" Davis went over Yao for a MAN-type rebound. If you can't out-jump Big Baby, it might be time to invest in some Strength Shoes.
Update! Ron Artest: Almost forgot this one. Ron-Ron -- who ball-hogged his way to 3-for-16 shooting -- received an emergency ego-ectomy from Dr. Kendrick Perkins. (Note that Basketbawful reader AK Dave reminded me that I once vowed to refer to all "merciless blocked shots against unsuspecting and/or inferior opponents" as Code Reds. So the following video is an example of both an ego-ectomy AND a Code Red.)
Missing persons: From the game notes in the AP recap: "Houston guard Steve Francis, out with a knee injury, arrived at the arena wearing a red velvet sport jacket with 'Barack Obama' spelled on the back in sequins. Francis said he would try to attend Obama's presidential inauguration. 'Today is a transitional day in my career and everybody else's career,' he said before the game." Wait...Francis is still in the league?! Nice jacket, though. I imagine it's what a pimp would have worn to the Democratic National Convention this year.
Fittingly, Steve is shown walking away...
Brian Scalabrine:The Lord of the Rings earned a DNP-CD last night. Random question: Which group of words is more horrific to you on a personal level: "Antoine Walker, NBA Champion" or "Brian Scalabrine, NBA Champion"? Discuss.
Chris Duncan, AP sports writer: In the early version of last night's AP writeup of the Celtics-Rockets game, Chris referred to Eddie House as "Kevin." This was pointed out to me by Basketbawful reader Mark, who said: "Maybe Kevin is Eddie's evil twin?" Actually, I would say Eddie is the evil twin. After all, he's the one who shoots all the time. I'll put an abbreviated screen shot below. Here's the full version that Mark sent in.
You go KEVIN!
The San Antonio Spurs: They are now 0-3. Two of those losses took place in San Antonio, where the Spurs have been nigh-invincible the last 10 years. It's the team's worst start since opening the 1973-74 ABA season at 0-4. For the sake of perspective, that was their first season in San Antonio after playing in Dallas as the Chaparrals. (The Spurs joined the NBA in 1976.) The team seemed lifeless, which makes sense since their "heart and soul" player, Manu Ginobili, is still rehabbing his ankle. But seriously, even with Manu, this team looks weak. Matt Bonner (zero points, 0-for-5 and 5 boards in 20 minutes) started at center last night. Michael Finley shot 1-for-3 and finished with 3 points. Ime Udoka was 0-for-4. George Hill was 3-for-7. Kurt Thomas played 12 minutes without scoring a single point (he was 0-for-1) or snaring a single rebound. The Fabulous Oberto returned to play 14 reboundless minutes. Frankly, if it wasn't for Roger Mason, the Spurs might have lost by 30 instead of "only" 17.
Sure, the Spurs will likely make a strong second-half of the season push, but they've officially slipped down a notch from contender status. They just don't have the talent.
James Singleton and Jose Juan Barea: From Basketbawful reader Noah: "There were TWO two trillions on the Mavs tonight, J.J. Barea and Singleton. I dunno about you...but I've never seen a double two trillion before." That is two scoops of poop right there. If the Mavs were the Super Friends, then Singleton and Barea would be the Wonder Twins...otherwise known as "the only heroes Aquaman got to make fun of." And in case you're wondering, the answer is: Yes, Jose would be Jayna.
Stephon Marbury: From Basketbawful reader Michael Mach: "Quote of the night from Starbury: 'Looking back at the last two years, I kind of liked Larry Brown,' Marbury said with a laugh. 'I kind of liked Larry Brown. I'm like, 'Man, I wish this guy was here to drill me now.' I didn't know Marbury liked to be drilled, especially by Larry Brown." Wow. Looking past the rather obvious homoerotic overtones for a sec, just think about that statement. Considering the way Larry Brown got run out of New York, that would be like the villagers from Frankenstein saying, "I kind of liked the monster. Man, I wish that beast was here to strangle me to death right now!" Here's the rest of what Starbury had to say.
WNBA ad placement: From Basketbawful reader Sun Devil: "Saw this little gem on Facebook. Is association with sex the new way the WNBA is being marketed? I'm not so sure. But I'm concerned that Facebook had a WNBA fan page and send-her-panties-once-a-month ads targeted at me. Clearly, I must fall under the women's athletics perv demographic." Quick quiz: Have you ever purchased a poster of Sporty Spice and/or Kendra from the Girls Next Door and prominently displayed it in your house/apartment/parent's basement? If the answer is "yes," then you definitely fall in that demographic category. And you will never have sex with a woman without first giving them your credit card number. Anyway, Sun Devil also provided the pictorial evidence:
Kobe Bryant: He checked out in the "10 items or less" aisle despite the fact that he had almost 20 items in his cart. He also talked on his cell phone the whole time, and insisted on paying in exact change...using all pennies. Update! AND bitched to the manager about how his groceries were bagged (according to Basketbawful reader BJ).
Update! Unintentionally funny typos: Ben from the Raptors' blog Prehistoric Hoops drew my attention to this typo on the preview for the Raps-Pistons game...BUT TICKETS! Man, if they were going to make this mistake, couldn't they have at least added another "t"?