The dreaded double facepalm

The Chicago Bulls: Gone are the days when games in the last month of the season between two teams who are a number of games under .500 are meaningless. No, in today's NBA, a matchup between the 32-42 Indiana Pacers and the 36-39 Chicago Bulls had playoff implications for both teams. That's right, despite being 10 games below the .500 mark, the Pacers are still clinging to their playoff dreams, albeit by their fingernails. The Bulls, on the other hand were looking to not only hold onto that 8th seed, but were looking to gain some ground on the 7th seed with a Detroit loss (more on that below). But it was not to be, as Chicago surrendered a 7-point lead with 3:35 remaining, allowing the Pacers to finish the game on an 11-2 run. I'm guessing Chicago could have used John Salmons for this one, but instead he sat out with an injury to one of his groins (thankfully he's still got the other one). This loss meant that if Charlotte could beat the Lakers, they'd be tied in the loss column with Chicago for that final playoff spot (Indiana's still three games back in that column, so they're not technically out of it. Yet.) Speaking of clinging to one of the lower playoff seeds...

The Detroit Pistons: The good news for Detroit is that they are finally healthy. The bad news is they were playing in Cleveland where the Crabs were 35-1. Detroit actually played pretty well in this one, considering Cleveland's home dominance this year, and Detroit's overall suckitude all season long; but in the end the wheels came off of the Motor City's team, and as a result they crashed into a telephone pole. Detroit led for virtually all of the first half, before letting the Crabs tie it right at the end, then it was back and forth, with Detroit actually holding a 2-point lead with five minutes to go. Unfortunately for the Pistons they only scored 4 more points in the last 5 minutes, and that was all she wrote.

Rasheed Wallace: After sitting out the last 11 games with an injured left calf, Sheed celebrated his return to action in typical Sheed fashion: by picking up a technical. Since this happened to be his 16th T on the season, Sheed will have to miss the next game due to the automatic suspension that comes with it. Maybe that'll leave an extra starting slot open for one of his teammates though...

Allen Iverson, whining machine: After being out for 16 games with an injury, this was the Not Answer's second game back, and second time coming off the bench, this time with 18 minutes of playing time. And he was not happy about it: "How many minutes did I play? It seemed way, way, way less than that. Eighteen minutes? Come on, man. I can play 18 minutes with my eyes closed, with a 100-pound truck on my back. It's a bad feeling, man. I'm wondering what they rushed me to get back for? For that? It's a bad time for me mentally. I am just trying to get through it without starting a whole bunch of nonsense. I'm looking at the big picture. If I vent my frustration then it's like, given who I am, I'll be the one everybody points the finger at. I am just going to try to laugh to stop from crying." He doesn't know what the rush was to get him back? Uh, how about making the playoffs? Nevertheless, when your team is fighting for its season like this, now is not the time to be making veiled threats about venting your frustrations. If he keeps this up, Stephon Marbury's gonna call him and tell him to stop stealing his schtick.

The Atlanta Hawks: Fresh off their win over the Lakers at home on Sunday, Atlanta set out on the road to prove they can be good away from the Philips Arena in Atlanta. That's good in theory, but in reality these Hawks are just as bad on the road as they were last year in the playoffs when Boston mopped the floor with them in the four road games Atlanta played. The Hawks started off bad, falling behind by as many as 16 in the first half, and trailed the whole game except for a brief lead when the score was 6-4. The Hawks made a valiant push to get to within one point in the fourth quarter, but clearly the effort to get back in the game took too much out of them as they then let the Sixers go on a 14-2 run to put the game out of reach. Josh Smith and Flip Murray were the only Dirty Birds who came to play, scoring 52 of the team's 85 points. The rest of the team was pure garbage, especially...

Mike Bibby: Maybe Bibby was all annoyed he couldn't be there in Sacramento last night along with Peja Stojakovic, Chris Webber, Doug Christie and Scott Pollard to celebrate the retiring of Vlade Divac's number; but whatever the case was, Bibby didn't bring his game with him to this one: 7 points on 9 shots with 0 assists and 1 turnover in 32 minutes is rather poor for your team's starting point guard. You know, I'll bet Atlanta wishes they'd just shipped him off to Sacramento for that ceremony after all.

The Los Angeles Lakers: The following sentence is not a misprint: the Bobcats have now won six of seven against the Lakers. It's really becoming almost predictable at this point, L.A. just cannot beat the pesky Bobcats. The Lakers picked up where they left off on Sunday in their loss to the Hawks, shooting only 39 percent from the field en route to only 84 points. At least they got Pau Gasol more than 10 shots in this game though. At this point, L.A. can pretty much kiss home court advantage against Cleveland in The Finals goodbye (assuming both teams make it there, of course), as the Lakers are now three full games in back of the Crabs with only eight remaining. Phil Jackson has already said he doesn't think the Lakers need HCA against Cleveland to win this year, so it could be he's already setting the team on cruise control for the rest of the regular season, what with having already secured the West's #1 seed, not to mention a three-game lead and the tiebreaker over Boston. Nonetheless, L.A's not gonna win anything with #24 playing like this...

Kobe Bryant: Fortunately for me, I don't have to be creative and come up with a reason for his appearance on today's Worst Of, as he took care of that himself: 11-28 for 25 points with only 2 assists and 2 rebounds continues one of the longest shooting slumps the Mamba has ever had in his 13-year career. In the last eight games, Kobe has only shot over 50% from the field once (going 10-18 against Detroit last week), and has shot only 37% from the field overall in that octet. In the last two months, the Lakers have lost seven times, and in five of those games Kobe has taken at least 28 shots, so maybe Kobe should think about, I dunno, sharing the ball some? Just a suggestion.

The Minnesota Timberwolves: The Pups raced out to a 4-2 lead, and unfortunately for them that was the high point in the game for them as they never led again. Dallas jumped all over them, leading by as many as 17 in the first quarter, and the Mavs never looked back. This game was a combination of bad offense and worse defense for the Timberwolves, as they only shot 39% from the field while allowing Dallas to shoot 55% on the other end. Even a little home cookin' for Minnesota couldn't help in this one, as the 10 extra made free throws only helped them lose by 20 instead of 30. However, even though the Mavs won an easy one, they're not above reproach...

Eric Dampier: Putting up a Dampier-esque stat line of 4 points, 5 boards and 3 fouls in 24 minutes of play is bad enough; but when you add in that he let Kevin Love go off for 23 points and 12 boards at the same time, it definitely deserves a mention here. Well done, Eric. I'm sure Mark Cuban appreciates the effort he's getting for the $9.5m he's paying you this year (not to mention the $23m Dampier is due in the coming two seasons).

The San Antonio Spurs: I know the #1 seed in the West is already out of reach, but surely San Antonio knows they're in competition for the #2 seed, right? Just because they've already locked up a playoff spot doesn't mean they should be taking any games off, not when they're only two games ahead of Utah for the #7 seed. With all that in mind, there's just no excuse for losing at home to the Thunder, especially in a game in which every Spur was healthy. Gregg Popovich decided not to play Bruce Bowen in this one, and ended up giving Manu Ginibili the start, and those might have been poor decisions. With Bowen on the bench all night, Kevin Durant went wild, going 12-19 for 31 points. Meanwhile, San Antonio's bench lacked any real scoring punch, with Roger Mason being the only bench player in double figures with 10 points on 3-for-10 shooting.

Michael Finley: What is Michael Finely doing taking the most shots for the Spurs? Ginobili had 13 shots, Duncan had 12 and Tony Parker only had 8, but there was Michael Finley going 5-for-16 (including 10 three pointers).

The Utah Jazz: Of the teams in the West with a shot of making the playoffs, Utah has the worst road record of any of them at 14-22, and last night they showed us why in getting blown out in Portland. With only one road win this season over a team with a winning record, Utah is looking more and more like they might be out in the first round since they are currently the 7th seeded team, and five of their remaining 8 games are on the road against teams with winning records (Denver, NO, Dallas, San Antonio & the Lakers). Sure they'll probably be a tough out, what with having one of the league's best home records, but if you open the playoffs on the road and have proven you can't ever win away from home, well you're just asking for some late April fishing plans.

The New York Knicks: Their race to the bottom continues! The Knicks have now lost nine of their last 10, making the recent dreams of a playoff appearance seem like a distant memory at this point. The Knicks led in this one 8-7, but soon surrendered the lead for good, falling behind by as many as 27 in the 2nd quarter. The Knicks valiantly tried to make a game of it, and climbed back to within a few points in the 3rd quarter and hung around there for a bit before letting the Nuggets push the lead back to double digits where it stayed for most of the rest of the game. With the win, Denver clinched a playoff spot in the West, and the Knicks maybe added a few more ping pong balls to the lottery draft.

Mike 'Antoni: It's no wonder the Knicks couldn't get over the hump after coming back from 27 down to cut it to 4 with about 20 minutes to go in the game. Not only were the Knicks playing in the thin air of Denver, but Short Bench Mike utilized the strategy which worked so "well" for him in Phoenix and played only seven players. I'm willing to bet an extra sub here or there would have let the starters catch their breath a little. Who'd have thought the Knicks would miss Larry Hughes and Eddy Curry so much?

The New Orleans Hornets: I know, I know, they won the game, but when you're a team that supposedly had title hopes at the beginning of the year and you're fighting for playoff seeding, you shouldn't need a last second three to beat the league's worst team. To be fair, the Hornets were missing Peja Stojakovic, Tyson Chandler and James Posey, but the Kings were missing... well, a good team. With the win New Orleans stayed one game ahead of the Jazz in the loss column for the 6th seed in the West.

Andres Nocioni: Check out his "clutch" moments in the last 90 seconds of this game:

1:27 remaining, tie game: Nocioni fouls David West on a made basket, setting up an And-1.

0:37 remaining, tie game: Nocioni gets the ball stripped and stolen by Chris Paul.

0:27 remaining, tie game: Nocioni, after getting stripped and not running downcourt after Paul, is all alone under the basket when Paul's shot gets blocked at the other end of the floor; but Nocioni fumbles the pass right to him, giving the defender time to get back and prevent him from hitting the go ahead basket.
I know Bulls fans must be really sorry they don't have Nocioni to cheer for anymore.

Laction report: No day is complete without Chris's recap of the previous day's laction:

Hawks-Sixers: Othello Hunter jealously guards his wealth, and his watchfulness was rewarded with a 1.25 trillion paycheck.

Pistons-Cavs: Darnell "Lacktion" Jackson lived up to his nickname again with a 2.3 trillion take from the crustaceans' undersea treasure chest.

Bobcats-Lakers: Cartier Martin is no question mark for lacktivity, as a 32-second Mario proves.

Mavs-Wolves: Gerald Green got the go-ahead to lack it up as Mark Cuban's human victory cigar of the night, littering his 4:32 stint with a brick, giveaway, and foul for a +3 suck differential.

Kevin McHale however managed to win the battle of non-contribution tonight by having Mark Madsen earn a 2:0 Madsen-level Voskuhl in 5:16 via fouls (also worth a +2), as well as counting out a 1.4 trillion fortune from Jason Collins.

Jazz-Blazers: Shavlik Randolph was noticeably unproductive in 2:39, taking a foul and giving up the rock for +2.
Update! Ron Artest: Ron-Ron attended a Britney Spears concert. No, I am NOT kidding. (Via FanIQ.)

About the author: Wild Yams is a frequent reader of Basketbawful and many other basketball blogs, and is just as much a pain in the ass here as he is on those other sites. Like LeBron James, he likes to refer to himself in the third person, but unlike LeBron James, he has not mastered the crab dribble.

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43 Comments:
Anonymous Geert said...
Woah, why the early WOTN? Not that I complain, because here it's 10:17 in the morning right now.

Anyway, some stingy triple menlove from the Hornets: http://a.espncdn.com/photo/2009/0331/nba_a_butler_268.jpg CP looks a bit worried about Wright's approach.

Blogger John said...
Though like many Spurs out there who believe that Manu is a starter and should not be placed on the bench, but I have to say this; Pops got it all wrong this time. Manu should have came from the bench at least there is a balance of strength between the two line up.

This defeat will be a bitter pill to swallow for the Spurs as they now look more likely to loose that valuable second spot in the West (you may check out my game re-cap). That’s if they can put this bad spell behind them altogether.

Remember they have road trips to Cleveland and New Orleans. I wouldn’t want to see them playing without a home court advantage in the first round itself in the playoffs. It’s not too late for them but it will take whole lot off effort and guts from the four time Champions to turn the tide in their favour.

Also, please take your time to listen our podcast.

Anonymous bizarro said...
hey bawful did you see that incident between a denver fan and Rocky the mountain lion! it couldn't look more stupid.

Blogger Headless Chicken said...
Early birdey, huh? Just this: MJ looks pretty "big" these days. Couldn't find a photo though.

Captcha: choless. That's what the Knicks do. Playoff hopes died, so they cho less to achieve more in the lottery. Every loss adds to their lottery hopes. But why the effort? Stern is going to help out with the iced envelope anyways ...

Blogger Junior said...
No lacktation repotr today?


and by the way, in the 3-ball from Rasual Butler at the buzzer to win the game for Hornets, Nocioni should be the one guarding him and instead he let Butler get wide open and with pleny time to make the shot, only managing to get dotted in the play

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-ew0z7MJvY

Anonymous hellshocked said...
Only Allen Iverson would consider he was rushed back after the team sat him out a good 4 weeks with "back pain". In his prime he would have been a terrible fit with Detroit, but the guy has lost at least one step and relies more than ever on his streaky jumper these days. He's like a pint sized Shaq in terms of his inflated opinion of his current abilities and delusions that he is an elite player who is merely being held back by a team that doesn't give him enough touches.

Jordan is looking quite hefty these days, yes. He actually showed up at a Bobcats game last night, making faces and waving his arms a lot, trying to show he's not really an absentee executive and that he really really DOES care about his team, damnit!

Blogger anne said...
No mention of the Lakers' "bench" as a WOTN? Remember at the beginning of the season, when everyone was talking about the greatness of the Lakers "bench"? And because of their great "bench", they were going to be this year's NBA champions?

Well, last night, their "bench" scored a total of 11 points and had 10 total rebounds. On the other hand, Pau Gasol had 16 points and 11 rebounds. So basically, if Gasol was playing against the "bench" players in a 1 on 6 game, he would kill them. Obviously, the solution for the Lakers is to clone Gasol so they can have one starting, the other off the bench. It also works when they kill the original Gasol by playing him 45 minutes every night, they can just send the clone in as a starter.

However, I guess the Lakers' "bench" lacktion is good news for Cleveland fans, because if that "bench" keeps up the "great" work, then LeBron will finally get his ring this year and possibly re-sign with Cleveland.

Blogger anne said...
By the way, I'm not a Lakers fan, I like Pau Gasol, and that is the only reason I follow the Lakers. I just wanted to clarify so I won't get on Bawful's bad side. ;) Unfortunately for me, I'm a Mavs fan and there is only so much bitching I can do about all that mediocrity.

Anonymous DeWoof01 said...
SO after watching the Jazz giving up 62% FG shooting as well as 56% 3 point shooting and deciding to let the game be over 4 minutes into the first quarter I have a question. We say theres Enver, and Allas, but what do you say when theres no D in Utah Jazz?

Anonymous Ruben said...
No mention of the photo of Bynum at the playboy mansion?
http://www.sportingnews.com/blog/LAsportsfan/187994
Well, I think it's actually quite awesome, so yeah, maybe not worstie material- Apart from him apparently dressing up as Sinbad- (the pirate or comedian. They are both equally bawful)

Anonymous CaptainHomeless said...
Could this be the "100 pound truck" Iverson is talking about?

http://common.csnstores.com/common/products/FIS/FIS1044_l.jpg

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Headless Chicken - Jordan's definitely looking a little round these days. They interviewed him during the Laker broadcast last night and he said he needs to play James Worthy in a game of one-on-one because Worthy currently has a three games to two lead over him. When they asked Worthy about this, he said he's never gonna play Jordan again because he knows it's killing him that he's behind like that.

Junior - You're absolutely right, Nocioni left Butler wide open to double team West in the paint for some reason. Also, I noticed the Kings announcers referred to him as "Nokes". When did this start? Did the Bulls announcers call him that too?

anne - You're 100% correct that the Laker bench was miserable last night, and really they have been so for the last couple games. The Laker bench did get a lot of praise early in the year, but in fairness, at the beginning of the season the bench featured Lamar Odom and Trevor Ariza, both of whom are now starting. When Andrew Bynum returns that's probably going to make that bench pretty dangerous again. For now though, it's just Jordan Farmar, Sasha Vujacic, Luke Walton, Josh Powell and DJ Mbenga. And Adam Morrison, of course.

DeWoof01 - I guess it's only fitting that there's already no D in 'Utah Jazz'. If their jumpers ever stop falling we can call them the 'Azz' though.

Ruben - I don't know if being at the Playboy Mansion is really a bad thing (though the costume probably is, as you point out); but some have really taken Bynum to task for having a bunny on his shoulders with his injured knee and all. I say if the guy is healthy enough to be scrimmaging and to be talking about possibly playing in a game this weekend, then he's probably healthy enough to have a 100 pound girl on his shoulders.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Geert -- WOW. That is man-love-riffic.

John -- I agree. Manu, in my opinion, is more valuable on a per-minute basis coming off the bench.

bizarro -- No, since Wild Yams was kind enough to take WotN duties today, I took a night off from watching anything other than Bulls-Pacers. What happened?

Headless Chicken -- I didn't see him last night, but whenever I've seen him lately, I couldn't help but notice his bulging gut. That seems to be the inescapable fate of today's basketball legends. It's funny, Wilt Chamberlain was obsessed with not getting out of shape post-career, and he worked out relentlessly and, according to his biography, would even fast if he gained a few pounds. I somehow doubt MJ will ever fast.

Junior -- The lacktivity report got added late.

hellshocked -- Regarding A.I., you just can't teach an old dog new tricks, you know? He has never been forced to play efficiently. The one coach who tried to enforce that on him was interim head man Chris Ford, and he got the boot pretty quickly because Iverson wasn't going to stand for it.

He wants his minutes and shots. He will always want them, nay, expect them. He doesn't know any other way, and he's disinclined to alter his game. And, really, it's not like the Not Answer is or could be a good spot-up shooter. He requires volume touches and shots to get into his rhythm.

The last couple seasons have been very illuminating. Kevin Garnett and Allen Iverson were two players that spent most of their career with the "What would happen if they had quality teammates?" question hanging over their heads. KG showed he could be a champion. Iverson has proven only that he can be a divisive presence or an albotross around his team's neck.

anne -- Heh, well, don't worry, I wouldn't hold it against you even if you were a Lakers fan. To me, there are different kinds of Lakers fans, and fans in general. The psycho kind and the kind that is just crazy in love with their team. The former I can't stand, the latter I can fully appreciate.

Anyway, Yams, the author of this post, apparently agrees with you on the Lakers bench.

DeWoof01 -- Yeah, the Jazz have been struggling on the defensive end this season. By the numbers, they don't SEEM that bad...11th in defensive efficiency, only .1 of a point outside of the top 10. But the main problem the Jazz face is they simply don't have the team speed or athleticism to defend fast, athletic teams/players. I would say that most of their fundamentals are reasonably sound, they're just a step slow and can be overpowered.

Ruben -- Yeah, I felt that Bynum's mansion trip got way too much press. I mean, as Yams noted, if he's going 3-on-3, he can probably hold up a girl who's MAYBE 100 pounds. I think part of the reason people are busting his chops is this unspoken expectation that injured players who aren't on the court should be grim-faced and covered in bubble-wrap until they can do something to help the team (i.e., earn their huge salary). It's a sort of jealousy/resentment thing, like, why should Bynum be goofing around and having fun when he can't even play the game.

Captain Homeless -- Nice!

Yams -- The Bulls broadcasters and fans called him "Noc," although some pronounced the "c" as an "s" and some pronounced it as a "ch." I would guess "Nokes" is a mistake, like, they heard "Nos" or "Noch" once and tried to emulate it...but they "misremembered."

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Mr. Bawful, the Kings announcers called him "Nokes" a couple times so it didn't sound like a mistake. Maybe it's their new nickname for him?

Also, regarding Wilt, isn't it odd that as obsessed as he was with staying in shape that he died so young?

Jordan and Dominique Wilkins pretty much have the same physique these days. Maybe they're trying to rekindle their rivalry from the slam dunk contests of the 80s in the form of pie eating contests.

Blogger chris said...
WY: So what Wilt and MJ are teaching us is, being out of shape the older you get (after starting out in shape) is the secret to longevity!?

Blogger anne said...
Yams, you are correct, Odom and Ariza pretty much made the bench at the beginning of the season, and now Luke Walton is the only one they're getting some production from. I'm a bit concerned about Jordan Faramar though, he was playing pretty well for a while, and now he's regressed. As for Sasha, well, you can't really expect him to play well when he's probably fretting over which of his glamour shots look the best on his website.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Regarding Wilt's early death (at 64). A few years before he died, Wilt was diagnosed as having cardiomyopathy, which means that his heart was too weak to pump blood through his body. As a result, he lost 50 pounds in the months prior to his death. From what I've read, there are three potential causes for this condition: nutritional deficit, blocked arteries, and/or infection.

Wilt loved to eat, and eat well. it's doubtful he suffered from a nutrition-based problem. His doctors never found any arterial complications. So that leaves us with the notion of infection. Well, here's a shocker: Cardiomyopathy is often caused by chlamydia...a rather notable STD. And we all know Wilt like to, ahem, give freely of his love.

Just a theory, and not one that originated with me. But no other reasonable explanation has ever been given for why Wilt's heart just up and failed. Some have suggested that he was just "too big" for his heart, but that explanation never quite rung true to me.

Anonymous JustinS said...
Can we get yet another Honorable Mention for NBA officials? The Boozer, Przybilla, and Sloan ejections were all awful.

And you KNOW it's bad when even the horrid Portland commentators wouldn't stop talking about how Boozer shouldn't have been ejected.

Anonymous La Dolce Vita said...
'We play like this in the playoffs and it's not going to happen for us,' a grim-faced Pau Gasol said. 'It's going to be a really bad deal, so we have to wake up. We're not moving the ball, we're not sharing the ball on offense and that's leading to breakdowns defensively.

I wonder who Pau was referring to not sharing the ball? Certainly not Kobe, who is 30 for 76 over his last three games...

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
"The Pups raced out to a 4-2 lead,"

"Cartier Martin is no question mark for lacktivity, as a 32-second Mario proves"

"Some have suggested that he was just "too big" for his heart,"

I giggle at the subtlety in today's post/comments.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
anne - I've had an ongoing conversation with a friend of mine about Jordan Farmar and the future of the PG position for the Lakers, because it's looking more and more like Farmar is not the long-term solution the Lakers were hoping he was when the season started. Farmar (along with Luke Walton) makes some of the laziest, most ill-advised passes I've ever seen, and he does so with alarming regularity. And that's not good for someone who is trying to be an NBA point guard. He's also incredibly inconsistent in most areas of the game, so I don't see much in his future outside of being a backup PG for his career. With Derek Fisher getting older, it begs the question of what will the Lakers do to fill in the starting PG spot moving forward.

Anonymous dewoof01 said...
Did anyone watch the suns/kings game the other night on league pass when the announcers at one point in the forth quarter were so bored with the game that they started discussing how good the dilly bars were at the arena for about 3 minutes and didn't evne call any of the plays? Thats gotta be a sad city right now.

Any bawful I know the Jazz are a pretty decent defensive team. But completely agree with what you said about a step slow. It was just amazing last night at how slow they were. When the blazers went inside they collapsed inside but everyone did and let 2-3 shooters open, and when the ball was outside they would leave just boozer in the post with oden and lamarcus for an easy bucket. By the way you couldn't see it very well on TV but at the game they had a great slow motion clip of sloan calling the Ref a M F-er when he was thrown. Never thought I'd see that, some lame refs in that game though.

Blogger chris said...
AnacondaHL: ANYONE detecting my subtlety in that line has to be the hero of the day. :D

Anonymous AK Dave said...
Yams/Anne-

Farmar looked great early, but you are right, Anne- he has regressed. Really, the guy isn't a point guard; he's a vastly undersized shooting guard a la Ben Gordon- only without BG's jumper.

The Lakes are OK in the PG department for now because A) they employ the triangle which doesn't require a PG who has to drive and kick or handle the ball in the fashion that CP3 or Nash have to on a nightly basis just for the offense to function at all. The other reasons are B) Fisher has a little left in the tank; at least enough for one more season, and C) Kobe can handle the ball for them much the same way that Scottie Pippen handled the ball for the Bulls when Jud Buechler and Steve Kerr were on the floor. Yeah it was nice to have BJ Armstrong or Ron Harper handling, but when all you've got is Steve Kerr, with GP guarding him, you give the ball to Pip to advance to the frontcourt- right?

Anyway, the Phil Jackson triangle doesn't require a star PG, that's all I'm saying. But they can't have guys running up and down throwing the ball away either. They don't need Steve Nash, they need Steve Blake, know what I'm saying? They should be able to find their Steve Blake without too much effort. I think Earl Watson is looking for a job as a backup PG on a good team, and he would do nicely (though he is just an example of what I think they need- a so-so PG who can walk it up the court and throw the ball in to Kobe or Pao).

And as for their late struggles, I say "meh". They will have the entire first round to tune-up and get their heads on straight. I honestly believe they could play the entire first round series with playboy bunnies on their shoulders and still beat Dallas. And wouldn't that be WAY more fun to watch anyway? :D

Blogger shayan said...
"If he keeps this up, Stephon Marbury's gonna call him and tell him to stop stealing his schtick." - lol!

Anonymous AK Dave said...
One more note about the Bulls: they got LIT UP by Josh Freakin' McRoberts for 10pts on 4-6fga.

I didn't know this guy still had a job in the NBA- but it just goes to prove what you always say about the Bulls letting opposing big men have career/season-high games against them...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
How could you forget Nocioni's most important failure in the clutch: he gave up the game winning three! Check the replay and you see Butler's got all day on that shot--you do know you get to gaurd the guy taking the buzzer beater, right Andres?

Blogger Edgar said...
AK Dave's right. The Lakers are hardly screwed with Farmar as the future. He's easily replaceable. Now, my Hawks really are screwed at the point guard position (yet again). Bibby's a free agent, so he's probably gone after we get bounced from the playoffs (unless we somehow make it to the conference finals or something). That leaves us with the almost completely unused Acie Law, free agent Flip Murray and one more year of Speedy Claxton's horrendous contract.

I'm scared. And wouldn't Bibby be a good fit for the Lakers next season? Short term deal? I want this season to last forever, even if we can't beat anyone on the road. I'm terrified by what 2010 will bring.

Blogger chris said...
Edgar: But hey, at least Acie Law is experienced in lacktion!

Blogger Wild Yams said...
AK Dave - I definitely agree with you that the Lakers don't need to go out and get the next Steve Nash or anything, and that even if they did that might be an awkward fit for the triangle offense. The ideal PG in Phil's triangle would be a tall, long player who can bring the ball up court, who can play great defense and who can hit open shots, and that would be all he'd need to do. I don't know who that guy is, but it's definitely not Jordan Farmar.

I don't know if Farmar is necessarily an undersized shooting guard though, as he doesn't really display much of an interest in taking lots of shots. I do think that he is naturally a PG, but either he's confused or constrained in the triangle offense, or he's not as good as he was hyped up to be.

I too don't think the Lakers struggles lately are really indicative of anything too worrisome (outside of Kobe's individual play, more on that in a sec). LA's supposedly going to be getting Bynum back soon, which is going to help them a lot, and LA will probably have a much easier than expected road to The Finals, since I'm not really sold on anyone else in the West being all that great. That means LA's gonna have lots of time to work Bynum back into things, and it'll give them a lot of time to get over their malaise.

Kobe, on the other hand, is going through an almost unprecedented slump, so it's not really known what that could portend. I haven't seen Kobe shoot this poorly for such an extended period since the latter half of his second season in the league, and that was supposedly due to fatigue. It's quite possible his shots aren't falling now because all the playing last year on through the playoffs, and then playing through the Olympics along with this season may be taking its toll on him. Just something to keep an eye on.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Andrew Bynum having a Playboy bunny sit on his shoulders may not be something that's really a threat to his rehab (and neither is hula hooping), but this video is embarrassing nonetheless.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Farmar needs to get the "eye of the Jew" back, or he'll get das boot!

Anonymous Anonymous said...
embarassing?? man i'd love to be embarassed like that any day

...and kobe really just looks tired. he rarely takes it to the rim for layups and dunks anymore and his shot has looked very flat lately. i think he just needs some rest to get his legs fresh again. phil should give pau and kobe some games off, or maybe play them in the 1st quarter only or something, cuz there probably not gonna get HCA anymore

Anonymous AK Dave said...

Anonymous AK Dave said...
Yams:

This guy would have been a nice pickup for the Lakers:

"But this morning, the unexpected, illogical, and awesome occurred. The Oklahoma City Thunder inked Livingston, whose D-League performances have been good, but hardly overwhelming, to a multiyear (probably unguaranteed) deal. Yes."

-from Hardwood Paroxysim

Tall: check, long: check, can bring the ball up the court and hit open shots: check, defense: um, we'll see... Anyway, seems to me like another good pickup by the Thunder. I hope they don't force me to eventually not hate them...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
hopefully someone got a picture...i think i just saw kobe holding lamar odoms hand again

Anonymous carlodj said...
i recommend the AP and ESPN for WOTN.

I know the Mavs have the occasional shooting slump, but this is ridiculous. How embarrassed should the Heat be for losing this game against a team that hasn't hit a field goal in half a year?

"Miami began to pull away in the third quarter as Dallas went more than 6 months without a field goal."

original link on here:
http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/recap?gameId=290401006

and in case they take it down or update it with the game recap version that includes post game quotes, i have a screenshot here (scroll down to the bottom of the page):
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v231/carlodj/To%20Share/6monthswithoutafieldgoal.jpg

Anonymous pratt said...
I've been keeping a close eye on NBA box scores this week cause it's my Yahoo Playoff week, and this Clippers game is standing out.
The starting 5 has combined for 21 turnovers, Kaman and Davis have 6 each. Is this a regular statistic (for the Clippers) or is this as bad as I'm making it out to be?

Anonymous Anonymous said...
dunno if this qualifies as manlove, but it made me lol... http://a.espncdn.com/media/apphoto/4e347469-a546-4224-846c-e35822623e10.jpg

Aahahaha that's so funny. Last night, Grant Hill was a Warrior and he did not play cause' "old age/lack of talent".

http://www.nba.com/games/20090401/SACGSW/boxscore.html

Blogger Comissioner Denis said...
According to Yahoo! Grant Hill scored 23 points for the WARRIORS yesterday. Never heard about that trade...

http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/boxscore?gid=2009040109

Anonymous bizarro said...
bawful, an angry fan spilled his beer all over the mascot because Rocky the mountain was impertinent enough to throw some serpentine spray at him. Then Rocky was so furious he had to be restrained. Tough job to be a mascot...
you can view it at
http://scores.espn.go.com/nba/recap?gameId=290331007

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Here's a link right to the video of that Nuggets mascot incident. I dunno, it kinda looks staged to me. The only thing that makes me think it wasn't staged is that supposedly the mascot gets all upset (though it's hard to see if that's the case on the video). Lots of times they'll have staged stuff go on in the stands with the mascot and "fans of the opposing team" (who are actually plants).

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