Bucks mascot

Bango, the Milwaukee Bucks mascot: See that picture? Bango got hurt! During All-Star game festivities. No, really.

It's all fun and games until a man dressed as an animal tears his ACL falling through a basketball hoop. The Bucks, of course, released a statement: "While gazelle-like dunks and agile maneuvers around the court will be impossible for a time, the heart of Bucks game-night entertainment and the emotional leader of Bucks fans of all ages will continue to lead fan enthusiasm at home games."

Take-backs: Just when the people of Oklahoma City had something (other than Kevin Durant's scoring) to get excited about, Tyson Chandler magically became a Hornet again. If you consider "failing a physical because of turf toe" to be magical. Wow. This is the first time -- in any sport -- I've heard about a turf-toe condition killing a trade. And he failed a physical because of it? I guess that physical had a lot of toe-related tests. ("Okay, Tyson, we need to you push this two-ton granite slab across the court and then fight off a pack of wild dogs...using only your toe. Now: GO!") Why do I get the feeling that Thunder GM Sam Presti rather have expiring contracts than Chandler's salary, which will be close to $12 million next season?

And now Chandler is heading back to New Orleans. I'm sure he'll be totally psyched to get healthy and play hard for a team that was willing to give him away for table scraps. Can't you just imagine Byron Scott calling him and saying, "Tyson, we NEED you!" and Chandler responding, "Sorry, coach, my toe...it's still pretty sore." I can then envision him hanging up before erupting into evil laughter as he destroys a marble bust of James Bond using the laser attachment on his new bionic toe implant.

The Indiana Pacers: Honestly, they didn't have much of a chance to beat the Bobcats after Danny Granger left the game with a sprained right foot. Granger scored 12 points in 10 minutes before he went down. Said Pacers coach Jim O'Brien: "Not enough weapons. When we lost Danny, obviously that hurts a great deal. We just didn't make enough shots. We had a lot of open shots in the fourth quarter, point-blank shots, and didn’t make them." By the way, Granger is currently sixth in the league in scoring (behind D-Wade, LeBron, Kobe, Kevin Durant and Dirk Nowitzki) at 25.0 PPG. But he plays for the Pacers, so it's like those points don't even exist. I might as well say he's averaging 43 snipe per game and has collected two pieces of the Triforce so far this season.

By the way, Indiana's Troy Murphy is averaging 13.1 PPG, 11.4 RPG and 43 percent three-point shooting. Meanwhile, New York's David Lee is averaging 16.4 PPG, 11.8 RPG and 56 percent shooting (all layups). Only nobody (outside of the beat writers covering the Pacers for the Associated Press) is talking about Murphy while many people are all like, "OH MY GOD, DAVID LEE!" I'm not trying to agree with Bill Simmons or anything, but Mike D'Antoni sure has changed the perception of Lee's career.

Update! I swear I'm not talking out of my you-know-what here. Take a look at Lee's advanced stats. Now look at Murphy's. Lee is a couple points ahead in PER, but he's played almost 200 more minutes and has a higher Usage Rate (19.1 to 16.1). But their Per 36 Minute numbers are pretty much the same, as are their Offensive/Defensive Ratings and True Shooting Percentage. Lee's one big advantage over Murphy, as Wild Yams pointed out, is contract size: Lee's contract is $4.47 million for this year and next year while Murphy's is $33.14m for the next three years. But keep in mind that Lee will be a restricted free agent this summer...and people will be throwing money at him. I guarantee it. So that advantage may not be so advantageous six months from now...

Ben Wallace: AK Dave turned me on to this story: "Wallace explained Wednesday how he cut his right arm crashing through a car window during a street football game in Richmond, Va., over the All-Star break. Wallace needed 14 stitches to close the cut, then had more glass removed from his arm at the Cleveland Clinic the following day. ... Asked who won the collision with the car, Wallace said he did, then paused. 'I guess,' he said. 'The window didn't bleed. I don't think it was made to bleed.' The play didn’t go down as a reception, either. 'That was the biggest disappointment,' Wallace said. 'I dropped the ball. That's good D.'"

As AK Dave put it: "Riiiight...that's the biggest disappointment? How about cutting the shit out of your arm and injuring yourself playing a game that thousands of school children manage to play everyday withOUT ramming into parked cars?" One good thing did come out of the injury, though...

Delonte West, advice machine: Also pointed out by AK Dave. Said Wallace: "Delonte told everybody, 'When you go on this break, don't do anything that's going to stop you from coming back and being with the team. Be careful, get a couple of workouts in and just enjoy the break.' I should have taken his advice." Who would have guessed that listening to Delonte West could help anyone avoid tragedy.

Shawn Marion: Finally! Finally The Matrix is out of the shadows of guys like Steve Nash, Amare Stoudemire and Dwyane Wade. And with Chris Bosh still out with a knee injury, the Craptors became Marions team...if only for a night. Well, I know what you're thinking, Shawn, 'cause right now I'm thinking the same thing. Actually, I've been thinking it ever since your bitched and moaned your way out of Phoenix: Why, oh why didn't you take the blue pill? Marion scored only 10 points on 4-for-9 shooting to go with 6 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 blocked shots in a game-high 40 minutes. Not exactly the kind of superstar impact you might from a guy who whined and pouted his way into a trade last year when Steve Kerr didn't give him a max contract extension. As an aside, the Craptors shot 36 percent, scored only 76 points and lost by 17 at home to the Craboliers. And Marion didn't have much impact on Toronto's team defense, either, since the Crabs shot almost 60 percent for the game.

Here's some bonus Matrix, regarding his unhappiness in Miami (via dunkside): "The game is supposed to be exciting. I'm tired of playing that boring style in the half court, watching everybody just go up and run plays, call this play. That's boring. The fans don't enjoy it either. People like to see you get up and down, have high-scoring games and dunks and all that stuff. That's what it's about." Reminder: This is the same guy who WANTED OUT OF PHOENIX. Wow. Still, it could have been worse. The Craptors could still have...

Jermaine O'Neal: The Heat are a mere one game into the Jermaine O'Neal Era and Pat Riley is already finding out why I call him "The Drain." O'Neal scored 13 points (6-for-9), but he only grabbed a single, lonely rebound in 27 minutes. One board, Jermaine? Really?! To put that into perspective, Brian Cardinal -- yes, that Brian Cardinal -- grabbed 10 rebounds in 16 minutes as part of 49-24 Minnesota's 49-24 rebounding advantage. And then there was The Drain's in-game injury: "[O'Neal] sustained a right eye injury in the third quarter and missed 13 minutes before returning late." Yeah, it was a freak accident. But for a guy who couldn't say healthy if you locked him in a plastic bubble...not too surprising, either. Said The Drain: "I would not have scripted this for my first game. Absolutely not."

The Miami Heat: Dwyane Wade had his routinely spectacular game -- 37 points, 12 assists, 4 steals, only 1 turnover -- but the Heat lost at home to the Al Jefferson-less Timberwolves. The reasons included poor rebounding (as described above), bad defense (Minny shot almost 54 percent) and an inability to stop Sebastian Telfair, who had a career-high 30 points and 8 assists. Said Wade: "It's a terrible loss." And that's a terrible understatement.

Kevin McHale (via Sebastian Telfair), quote machine: After the game, Telfiar described McHale's pregame motivational speech: "He asked us if we were going to be pros or punks. We decided to be pros." Can you imagine McHale, who looks like an elderly Herman Munster, asking a bunch of young ball players if they want to be punks? That's comedy.

The Philadelphia 76ers: What happened to the run? What happened to the fun? The previous night's road loss to the Pacers was followed up by a double-digit home loss to the Nuggets. Philly shot only 32 percent and missed 10 free throws. And you know who hurt the Sixers the most...?

Andre Iguodala: The Sixers were recently "re-Branded" Iggy's team. Last night, fouled out after only 27 minutes during which he scored 10 points (1-for-6), matched Jermaine O'Neals rebounding effort for the Heat and committed 3 turnovers. Way to lead by example, Andre. Assuming you're leading your team to Failsville.

The Orlando Magic: You know what hurts? I'll tell you: 32-point losses in which a team shoots 37 percent while "limiting" their opponent to just under 60 percent accuracy. And the 16 missed free throws? Salt in the gooey wound. Oh, and you can squirt some lemon juice on it too, since Dwight Howard's double-double streak was stuffed and mounted. And yes, I realize I stat cursed him yesterday. My bad. But in all fairness, Stan Van Gundy sat him when the game got out of hand. He would have gotten those extra two rebounds if he'd played more than 29 minutes.

Stan Van Gundy, excuse machine: Chris Paul sliced and diced the Magic for 36 points (14-for-22), 6 rebounds, 10 assists and 3 steals. And apparently, beyond the numbers, he also caused Orlando's entire roster to forget how to play the game of basketball. Said Stan the Man: "It was one of those nights a player just obliterated us. You can complain about your defense all you want, but sometimes great players just make you look worse than you are." Sorry, Stan. Paul didn't make your team look bad. He just held up the mirror.

P.S. The Magic need Jameer Nelson back. Badly.

The Milwaukee Bucks: If you were going to guess that someone on the Bulls beat the Bucks with a season-high 31 points that included an 18-point fourth-quarter explosion, you'd probably assume it was Ben Gordon, Derrick Rose or even Luol Deng. But nope: It was Kirk Hinrich, who shot 8-for-14 from the field, 5-for-6 from downtown and 10-for-10 from the line. He also had 4 steals, two of which came on back-to-back possessions during a crucial stretch in the final period after Milwaukee had pulled to within three points. Kirk went the other way for a layup after the first steal, hit a triple after the second, and then hit a jumper the next time Chicago had the ball to put the Bulls up by 10. That was the game-breaker. So, to sum up: Milwaukee was owned by Captain Kirk Hinrich. Said Bucks coach Scott Skiles: "Kirk had a great game, obviously shooting the ball and scoring. He just took our guards and made us look pretty silly on several occasions because he was playing so hard." Substitute "silly" for "sad," and you're right on the mark, Scott.

The New Jersey Nets: They were blasted by the Mavericks and Jason Kidd (23 points, 7-for-10, 10 assists) made Mark Cuban look like a genuis...for a night. Kidd also hit five of his six three-pointers, whereas Devin Harris, Kidd's All-Star replacement in New Jersey, missed all six of his triples and shot 5-for-18 overall (and he had a game-high 4 turnovers). When you get beaten, and soundly, because of Jason Kidd's SHOOTING, well, it's time to start putting hands in people's faces. Sidenote: Vince Carter scored 15 points on 21 shots and had a plus-minus score of -19.

The Sacramento Kings: J-Kidd wasn't the only player to have a revenge game last night. Mike Bibby tormented his old team by scoring 29 points on 10-for-19 shooting and going number two in the visitors locker room without flushing the toilet. Sacto now has the NBA's worst record at 11-44. But hey, at least they have Andres Nocioni and his giant contract that runs through, what, 2017?

Kevin Martin, "I know who that guys is" machine: Regarding Bibster's performance: "Bibby was Bibby tonight." True. But who knows? Maybe tonight he'll be Juan, the naughty cabana boy...

Portland Trail Blazer fans: Get this: They booed Darius Miles last night, presumably because he cost them all that cap room by, you know, getting healthy and resuming a career that the Blazers tried to prevent him from resuming. What a bastard. Said Miles: "I got booed when I had a Portland jersey on. It's not the first time I’ve heard them."

Greg Oden: Okay. It's official. The Blazers should have taken Durant.

The Los Angeles Clippers: Okay, the Clippers are a joke. We know that. But damn: They gave up 140 points for the second night in a row to the same team, only this time it happened at home. In professional wrestling terms, that makes them a jobber. What, does Mike Dunleavy Sr. have some stake in keeping Amare Stoudemire in Phoenix? Not only did his team make Steve Kerr look like a genius for firing Terry Porter and putting Alvin Gentry in charge, they pretty much killed any possibility that the Suns will deal STAT. Amare scored 41 points on 15-for-20 shooting, and 29 of those came in the first half. The Suns shot almost 60 percent and commmited only 7 turnovers. Oh, and Goran Dragic dunked on them AGAIN (on his way to scoring 12 points on 5-for-7 shooting). Way to be a bunch of shooting props, Clippers.

Mike Dunleavy, quote machine: Thanks to Clifton for providing this one: "Camby, who had his ear drained Wednesday, is awaiting work on whether he'll get medical clearance to fly to Portland for the Sunday's game. 'We're inventing new ways to get hurt,' Dunleavy said. 'I mean, in the annals of the league, what's the percentages of one of your players flying on an airplane and his ear drum caves in? I mean, it's like, what other kind of injury can happen?'" Wow. I hope he knocked on some wood when he said that. As Clifton put it: "Ohhhhh. Stat curse, Señor Dunleavy. I'm calling it. How wacky can we go? Frostbite from a freak liquid-nitrogen accident? Critically infected papercut on the tongue from licking an envelope longways instead of up-and-down? Or will they just start listing 'apathy' as a documented reason for missing games?"

The Golden State Warriors: They led against the Lakers for most of the game, and could have won with only a few defensive stops in the final minutes. Defensive stops? The Warriors?! Bwahahahahaha! Yeah. L.A. went on a late 17-3 run that began with back-to-back threes by Trevor Ariza, who padded his stats by scoring 17 points on 7-for-12 shooting. Said Ariza: "I just hit open shots, that was it. The ball came to me, and I had nothing but time, so it was like playing in practice." That's the Warriors' D for you: It's like playing in practice.

Lacktion report: Chris came here to report lacktion and chew bubble gum. And he's all out of bubble gum.

Nuggets-Sixers: Renaldo Balkman gave Denver a 1.7 trillion payday!

Pacers-Bobcats: Juwan Howard pressed "Start" on his bawful evening with a 37-second Mario for Larry Brown.

Grizzlies-Blazers: Greg Buckner may have gone against form with three lacktion-ruining boards, but luckily Marko Jaric saved the day as a substitute lacktator, bricking twice for a suck differential of +2 in 4:04.

Hawks-Kings: The statline difference between sometimes-lacktator Acie Law and THE Mario West shows why one Hawk will be on a first-name basis for years, while the other needed a failed bet to get on the news. Law laid down a brick, but then handcuffed himself with an assist, while Mr. West once again dusted off a cartridge with his namesake stat, a 12 second Mario that somehow included a foul!

Lakers-Warriors: Don Nelson had Jermareo Davidson stomp a Goomba tonight with a single-brick 40-second Mario.
Tom Ziller, quote machine: Mr. Ziller recently had this to say about our intrepid lacktion reporter: "That Chris guy is hilarious. I didn't know we had funny people in Sacramento. Send my thumbs up."

Siohvaughn Wade: Pookie is suing his ex-wife for defamation after she claimed he cheated on her and gave her an STD. You can't make this stuff up.

Rick Adelman: Adelman got upset at Knee-Mac for not informing the team of his decision to shut down for the season and get microfracture surgery for his achy-breaky knee before he went to the media. Said Rick: "There should be a protocol, there should be a procedure where we have a chance to sit down and talk about the situation and not be announced in the press. I don't know why that happened, why he did that. Certainly, that is not the way things should be handled." True. But then, the Rockets probably should have noticed that their was something worse than "general soreness" going on with McGrady's knee for the past several months. They told him he just had to play his knee back to health. Whoops.

Stuart Scott: I got the following email from Basketbawful reader William:

This didn't happen on the court, but I think it qualifies for a "Worst of." Background, I'm a C's fan, watching the Hornets-Magic game on ESPN. At halftime Stuart Scott tosses out this gem:

"Here's another reason why Boston might need to make a trade, because last year they had the best record in the East, and it took them seven games to beat Cleveland. Right now, the Cavaliers have the best record in the East. And they are running away with the East."

Last time I checked the standings (which was after the Cav's win tonight) they looked like this: Boston 44-11, Cleveland 41-11.

I know everyone hates the Celtics, but is it really fair to just flat-out lie about the standings? Or is he just too lazy to check said standings? Being behind by three in the win column is not 'running away with the East.' And can we please drop the 'seven games' bull? Yes, the Cavs took us to a decisive seventh game. The Hawks did too. That is not an accomplishment. Getting a ring is an accomplishment.
Penn State versus Illinois: This is a real final score: Penn St. 38, Illinois 33. Dear God. And Rush the Court pointed out that: "...as ESPN’s copy editors put it, Penn St. powered past Illinois." I'm getting cold chills. Not the good kind, either. (Thanks to Dan B. for the head's up.)

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

George Hill... lulz

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
This will be completely epic. The Suns aren't just going through dead coach bounce, they're leading into dead Keanu-Reeves-saying-"woah."-jumping-off-the-building bounce.

And I think I'm going to burn my Marion 31 jersey for good luck.

Blogger chris said...
Man, I wish the bawful Kings and the Celtics were playing soon, so we could have one of the more epic mirror-image games of all time (in addition to an extraterrestrial's revenge game) - 44-11 for Boston vs. 11-44 for the Maloofs' collection of odd contracts and one poet.

With records like that for those teams, it REALLY is 1986 all over again! (Though, back then, the original Arco Arena really WAS outdated after a few short years, unlike the current building a few blocks away that's the same exact age as the Palace of Auburn Hills.)

Last night on the Kings-Hawks broadcast, they advertised a "Guy's Night Out" ticket package for the upcoming Kings-Clippers matchup. I didn't know that most men were into efense, lacktivity, and bawful coaching...

Blogger chris said...
AnacondaHL: You know, if the aftereffect of the Porter firing leads to this much more 7SOL action, then was Mr. Marion the basketball equivalent of one Tiki Barber?

After all, it's as if he's been retired, or in the media spotlight whining (like Tiki!), as opposed to being a big contributor since Phoenix (save for his last game with the Heat).

BTW, to Ziller - thanks for the kind words. I couldn't have done this without the inspiration of the WORST TEAM IN THE ASSOCIATION!

Blogger chris said...
Whoa, Ziller says on Fanhouse that there'll be a Maloof reality show? I wonder if "dismantling a contender" and "milking taxpayers for what they're worth" will be discussed, or "putting in the Clay Bennett plan."

Blogger Wild Yams said...
I'm thinking this might have something to do with why people are going crazier over David Lee than they are over Troy Murphy:

Lee's contract - $4.47m for this year and next year

Murphy's contract - $33.14m for the next three years

I'm just sayin'.

Watching what has happened with Shawn Marion, I can't help but wonder for the umpteenth time what kind of a contract will he get this summer as a free agent. I'm actually starting to believe that Lamar Odom will probably fetch more on the open market than Marion will, despite Odom's horrendous inconsistencies, and Marion's All Star pedigree, and defensive prowess. Am I crazy for thinking that? Marion's stock has fallen right along with everything on Wall Street in the last year.

The Clippers are incredibly embarrassing.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

George Hill lulz

Blogger Dunpizzle said...

Phoenix has a new PG!?

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Yams -- Well, yeah, you have a point about their relative contract size...but that's going to change this summer, but I'm sure he'll be overpaid when he hits the free agent market this summer.

But based on the numbers, the players are pretty close. And I'm not just talking raw stats, they advanced ones bear it out too. Murphy is within two PER points of Lee despite the fact that Lee has a higher usage rate and has played almost 200 more minutes. Their offensive and defensive ratings are almost identical (and so is their True Shooting Percentage, for what it's worth). Their Per 36 Minute stats are about the same, too, with Lee having a slight edge in points and Murph being a little ahead in rebounding.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
I am sorry, chris, I can not respond right now. My stomach and heart are about to explode waiting for the trade deadline in 82 minutes (it is 1:38 pm EST as I write this).

And I find bullshit rumor posts like this. Ben fucking Wallace. No. No no no.

Blogger Dunpizzle said...

This should fall under worst of the week

Blogger chris said...
AnacondaHL: You know, the NBA trade deadline used to be as lacktive as the NFL's, but lately it's starting to climb up there with the NHL's frenzy.

But by baby steps, if much of it is the Suckramento Salary Dump, with seasoning from the Marion deal and the toe-jam Chandler non-trade.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
AnacondaHL -- I was going to say "Don't worry, it's never gonna happen," but I don't want to invoke a stat curse.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Breaking news - Looks like Larry Hughes will have to take his awful shot selection to the Big Apple, as it's being reported that he was traded to the Knicks for Jerome James and Tim Thomas.

Mr. Bawful, you're probably right about Lee & Murphy's stats being similar, and you're also probably right that Lee will soon be way overpaid; but the fact remains that most people will "buzz" over a player based in large part on their production compared to what they're getting paid. If Lee lands a Murphy-like contract, then the buzz will probably die down (or it might even turn into stuff like "for $11m a year he should be making the All-Star game"). IIRC, a couple years ago in Golden State Murphy was getting that similar buzz prior to signing his large contract.

So in other words, my guess is that once Lee's contract changes, so will the talk about how phenomenally great he is.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Here's a better link for that Hughes to NY story

Also, the Shaq to Cleveland deal is supposedly dead (if it ever had much life in the first place, that is).

Blogger Scott said...
Remember that clip posted yesterday of Mike Miller getting stripped at the top of the arc, leading to a dunk? Almost the exact same thing happened last night.


I had to double check it wasn't the same play.

Blogger chris said...

Chris Mihm leaves the Lakers!

As Hollinger noted on his trade tracker...
"The Grizzlies get paid to keep Chris Mihm on their roster for two months. What a country."

Blogger chris said...
From Deadspin comments (on the Chandler non-trade) - a new way to look at being sent to the Sooner State:


1:08 PM
There should be a law that any sentence that contains "Traded to Oklahoma City" must be changed to "Sentenced to Oklahoma City."

Anonymous Anonymous said...
WOTN wednesday 18th:

from nba.com's top 10 plays from wednesday...

_num 10: gotta love this commentary "Jermaine O'neal has changed teams, but some things never change: he's still getting smashed on"

-nume 6: louis williams gets blocked by 2 players at the same time.. must hurt!

Blogger Wild Yams said...
That'll teach Mihm to get in a slapfight with DJ Mbenga. Actually, this is my favorite take on this totally unimportant trade.

In other trade news (this time of actual importance), Rafer Alston looks headed to Orlando in exchange for spare parts. Maybe Houston's pulling the plug on this season, what with Knee-Mac out for the year and all? Does this put the Magic back in the title hunt?

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Yams -- Quick answer: Acquiring Alston isn't going to make anybody a contender. It's, at best, a band-aid over the wound that is Jameer Nelson's absence.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
"Does this put the Magic back in the title hunt?"

We're talking about Rafer Alston here, right? The guy who can't even hit the 40% mark when shooting inside the three-point arc?

Blogger Nick Flynt said...
I know I'm way late on this, but James Andrews made probably his first misdiagnosis in Knee-Mac.

Andrews is (from what I've seen) the best ortho and microfracture surgeon around.

He's my college team's doctor (UAlabama) and pretty much all major athletes seem to go to him for their knee work.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
After watching the Magic play yesterday, I can tell you that Alston IS going to have an effect.

Johnson/Redick can't penetrate like Jameer, and Redick's handles are suspect so he gets pressured and has to give up the rock. Lue can't get a shot off and is not as strong as Jameer. Alston will be able to handle the rock, penetrate, and score. I think he's a solid combo-guard who does a little bit of everything and a few things well.

He definitely helps them- but ultimately if Dwight Howard gets limited to 5 shots, Hedo/Rashard shoot 30% from the floor, and Howard can't hit free throws, then it won't matter; they'll get blown out in any game like they did last night.

I'm secretly rooting for Orlando. I like their team and I like Ron Jeremy. I think Ronny got a raw deal in Miami when Riley "took over" as head coach and I hope they get over the hump this year, and at least get to the conference finals.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Thank you! I've got both David Lee AND Troy Murphy on my fantasy team and all I get are decent offers for Lee and terrible offers for Murphy. They are playing almost identical!!!

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Sure Lee and Murphy score and rebound at a similar rate, but those are not the only things that count for value in a basketball player.

1. You noted yourself that Murphy shoots 46% and Lee 56%. Even adjusting for 3 pointers, Murphy still shoots 50% - still a good 6% shy. Efficiency is highly valuable in the NBA

2. David Lee is consistently matching up against best low post threat of opposing teams. Granted, he's not the best. But Murphy is never asked to do that - and its not because the coach never thought to ask, its because he can't.

3. Troy Murphy has been in the league since 01-02. He will be 29 in May, and has logged 527 NBA games. Lee is 3 years younger, has been in the league 5 less years, and 268 fewer games. His blue-book value is just that much higher.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Just to clarify I don't think the Magic w/ Alston are a legit title contender, but then again I didn't think they were with Jameer Nelson either. I think they're too inexperienced to knock off Boston, Cleveland and the Lakers, and as the 3rd seed in the East that's almost surely the three teams they'd have to beat to win it all (and they'd likely have to win all three of those series while being the road team). However, with Alston in there I think it prevents the Magic from continuing their slide of late, and will have them at least putting up something of a fight in that second round against whomever gets the 2nd seed in the East.

Since this is Basketbawful, I think we should talk about the biggest trade deadline failures, and IMO they are Cleveland and Portland. Cleveland needs to be throwing fiscal caution to the wind and go all in for a title this year and next year or else it's a very real possibility that they're going to lose LeBron. If they're not willing to do that and the financial realities of the current economy are too much for them to be able to do everything they can, then it probably would be smarter for them to explore getting ready for the free agent spree in the summer of 2010... and in the spirit of that effort they should really consider trading LeBron James. Now I know it's insanity to even propose such a thing, but I'm just saying that if they're gonna have to try to save money between now and next summer then odds are they're gonna lose LeBron anyway, so why not make the most tradable asset since Jordan in his prime work to your advantage instead? Can you imagine the young prospects the Cavs could get without ruining their cap situation for 2010 if they traded James?

OK, that aside, if the Cavs aren't in such dire financial straights as to consider trading LBJ, then why the hell did they hold onto Wally Sczerbiak's expiring contract?!?!?! With other teams looking to dump salary because of what is going on with the economy, how is it that the Cavs decided to just sit on Wally's expiring K like that? If LeBron bolts as a free agent next summer, I think today's failure will loom extra large.

That brings us to the other team that came up surprisingly small today: the Portland Blazers. Kevin Pritchard gets a lot of credit around the league for being this genius visionary and for stockpiling great young talent, but someone should have told him that just sitting on it the way he has should not be the endgame. The Blazers are set up to deal those guys and package them together to land some great players, and they even had Raef LaFrentz's huge expiring contract to throw in, yet they did a whole lot of nothing. Hank Abbott thinks Portland is just being extra super smart by teasing every other GM out there, but I think he's outsmarting himself. After all, Raef LaFrentz is officially worth nothing to Portland now, since letting his deal expire isn't gonna free up much space this summer (not with Darius Miles playing again), so why hold onto it like that? He couldn't bundle him along with guys like Channing Frye or Travis Outlaw or Nicolas Batum in exchange for a real solid player? Sorry Blazer fans, your team failed you today.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Poor Portland. All I can ever think of when we talk about Portland is that game 7 when they blew the 17pt lead in the 4th quarter... Man I really wanted Pip and Sabonis and those guys to win.

And the misery continues... Greg Oden is hurt again- after doing a good Joel Pryzbilla impression for half a season

Rudy Fernandez got jobbed in the slam dunk contest

Their awesome PG Steve FREAKIN BLAKE is hurt...

Portland fans probably feel like Warren G when he famously said, "Dayum! Wha's next?"

(don't act like you don't remember Regulators)

Blogger chris said...
OT: Interesting - Club Trillion DID give a shout out to Bawful in December!


Blogger chris said...
More props to this here blog known as Bawful: Pistons fans on the following link love the "King Crab" riffing as if they've discovered the finest seafood restaurant of their lifetimes!


Blogger Basketbawful said...
Dutchpancake -- Actually, I noted that Murphy is shooting 43 percent in threes, which makes him the 11th best three-point marksman in the league. What makes this even more impressive is that only one player (Roger Mason) ranked above him attempts more per game (Murph attempts 4.8 to Mason's 4.9).

Anyway, their scoring efficiency is nearly identical. Troy's True Shooting Percentage is 59.9 percent and Lee's is 60.6. Troy's Effective Field Goal Percentage is 57.1 and Lee's is 56.2. So while I agree with you that efficiency is important -- nay, VERY important -- in the NBA, the advanced numbers indicate that Murphy and Lee are equally efficient this season.

Yes, Lee matches up with different sorts of players, but that's his role. You defend who your coach tells you to defend. And anyway, Murph gives up 106 points per 100 possessions while Lee gives up 107 per. So, again, defensively, it's a wash.

Lee's younger, yes. I'll give you that. But this wasn't about who's going to be producing five years from now. My comments were more about all the furor over what Lee's been doing this season and how, based on every stat I can find, advanced or otherwise, they're production is basically identical.

Yams -- I wasn't too bothered by the Cavs' inactivity, because right now they just don't have a lot of needs (assuming West gets healthy before the end of the season). They're already one of the best teams in the league. Why mess with the chemistry just to bring somebody else in? Plus, I'm not sure what was available for them to get. The Blazers on the other hand, yeah, they needed to cash in some of that young talent. Look what stockpiling pretty good guys did for John Paxson. And it was killing Ainge before Kevin McHale stepped in and gave him a gift. Pritch needed to sac up and make a trade.

Blogger lordhenry said...
"In professional wrestling terms, that makes them a Jobber."

Ah, that was satisfying.

Almost as cool as Kobe and Shaq combining with Chris Paul to Ultra-Super Combo the east into submission.

And uh, I haven't seen anyone else mention this, but is anyone else finding Shaq's campaign to be a laker again a little creepy?
Someone should ask him How KOBE's a$$ tastes, it sure seems like he's been kissing it enough to know.

And this is just for AK Dave: The new psycho crusher is epic.....

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The OKC Bison must defeat Sheng Long to stand a chance

I am waiting for my copy of SF4 to get in! I can't wait, man. I haven't been this excited about a video game since Final Fantasy 12 (which rocked btw).

Oh and Matt: yes SFIV is available on PS3

Blogger lordhenry said...
Oh and Matt: yes SFIV is available on PS3

Um, if you are talking about basketbawful, I don't know if that's a good idea, sf4 is kinda like crack. If he gets addicted to it then that might spell the end of the bawful.

On the other hand, I'd love to know what character Mr. Mchale favors. I have a feeling he's the M. Bison type.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Why is the mascots jersey and shorts a different colour in the photo than in the video?

Anonymous Anonymous said...
i cant stop laughing right now. it might be because of the ganja, but a second ago doug collins (i think; one of the commentators anyway...) just had the most hilarious laugh ever. millsap had an and1 play to tie the game and all i hear is HA-HA...lol a stupid grin is stuck on my face

Blogger Preveen said...
Someone tell me how Marco Jaric landed what is arguably the hottest Victoria's Secret model of all time in Adrianna Lima? I mean, sure, he's in the NBA, but how many richer, more talented players than Jaric would turn down Adrianna Lima if she was interested?

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's a question the universe has yet to provide any answers for.

I am going to train my kid in SF4. He'll pwn every n00b!

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Mr. Bawful, I think the Cavs really needed to make a trade. They should have been inquiring about Marcus Camby or Baron Davis, IMO, in addition to lots of other players. They have played well, but I don't think they've got enough to win it all this year as currently constructed. The reason I think that is because they've looked pretty shockingly bad against the Lakers both times they've played them, so I feel like even if they can get by Boston, I don't think they can beat LA. Maybe they'd be much better in the Finals, I don't know, but LA looked like they'd pretty well figured out how to prevent LeBron from driving against them, and if he can't do that then Cleveland is done.

Camby would have given them a better option at power forward because he wouldn't be a drop off defensively from Ben Wallace and Anderson Varejao, but he'd be a big improvement on offense because he could actually step out and hit shots if he's left open, which would be perfect for LeBron's drives and kicks (look at how well Big Z does with that). Baron Davis would be maybe a riskier fit, but if he'd worked it would have given the Cavs a pretty awesome offensive attack, as well as giving them another great clutch performer to pair with LeBron.

I just think there were better options out there for the Cavs than another couple months of Wally Sczerbiak. Even if they'd just traded Wally for a combination of a bad contract plus some young talent or high draft picks or something. I can't help but feel that Wally's big expiring contract just went to waste.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Why don't they just replace the Mascot? No one will ever know.

- BettorFan.com