The Washington Wizards:
Health isn't the problem for the Wizards this season...they just aren't very good. In fact, they're just plain bad. How bad? Let me put it this way: the Pacers barely shot 40 percent from the field and still bet the
Generals by 16 points. Washington hit only 39 percent of their field goals, missed 11 of their 16 three-point attempts, shanked 11 of their 26 fouls shots, and gave up 22 points on 19 turnovers. For good measure, they were also outscored 23-6 in fast break points. As
Generals coach Flip Saunders put it: "I'm very disappointed. Our effort was poor. We turned the ball over way too much. I told the guys I'm going to have to take responsibility." Really, Flip? How many turnovers did you commit?Gilbert Arenas:
Huh...13 points, 5 assists, 3 turnovers and a game-worst plus-minus score of -24. I'm just sayin'.The Detroit Piston's foul shooting:
And how very foul it was. After falling behind by 17 points after one quarter, the Pistons rallied to make a game of it before losing by only seven points. The final score might have been closer -- indeed, Detroit might even have pulled out a win -- if they hadn't missed 14 free throws (23-for-37). In all fairness, Kwame Brown (0-for-4) and Jonas Jerebko (3-for-8) were the main culprits.The Orlando Magic defense:
Instead of cruising in for a comfy-cozy win, the Magic almost made an easy victory disappear by letting Charlie Villanueva go nuts during a 22-point fourth-quarter explosion. That's right. Charlie Villanueva. Beyond that, Orlando let Detroit shoot nearly 52 percent for the game. Hey, weren't these guys one of the best defensive teams in the league last season? Said Dwight Howard: "We haven't played good enough defense to be a great team. We have to try and be great every night, and that's just not happening yet." Added
Stan Van Gundy: "We're not playing smart enough. We didn't play enough defense and for too many minutes we were just hanging on to win a regular-season game. We aren't making the push to be great. I don't know if we will. We'll have to see."The Philadelphia 76ers:
The Sixers were playing at home against a short-handed New Jersey Nyets team. How shorthanded were they? The Nyets lost Courtney Lee early in the third quarter with a leg injury, and they were already without Keyon Dooling (hip surgery), Chris Douglas-Roberts (flu), Devin Harris (strained right groin), Tony Battie (right knee), Yi Jianlian (sprained right knee) and Jarvis Hayes (strained left hamstring). Mind you, even long-handed the Nyets were terrible. But Philly still barely managed to hold on for a 97-94 win that should be filed under "moral defeats."The Atlanta Hawks:
The Dirty Birds are supposed to be all sorts of awesome. Meanwhile, the Bobcats look like one of the worst teams in the league. Even worse for the 'Cats, their star player, Gerald Wallace, went 3-for-14 from the field. So of course the Hawks lost by 20. And here's some salt in that ugly wound: Charlotte came in the game averaging an NBA-low 79.8 PPG -- the only time they broke 80 was a double-overtime game against the Knicks -- but still managed to dump 103 points on the Atlanteans. And team captain Joe Johnson, who becomes a free agent next summer by the way, had some harsh words for his teammates: "Everybody who touches it wants to score. I really think guys on this team don't know their roles, so it's killing us. And it's going to continue to kill us. Ain't no way this team is 20-some points better than us. It can't continue to go like this."
For the record, Johnson shot 5-for-12 and finished with 1 lonely assist and a game-worst plus-minus score of -23. I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'.The Boston Celtics:
They suffered their first loss -- in Boston no less -- despite Kevin Garnett's best game of the season (26 points, 13-for-20, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals and a block). This happened in part because their defense went MIA as Phoenix scorched the nets by shooting 50 percent from the field and 54 percent from downtown. The Suns' 110 points was a season-high for Celtics opponents. In fact, it was the first time Boston gave up more than 90 points this season. Even more damning, Jason Richardson went into LeBron Mode, scoring 36 points (10-for-16) and grabbing 10 boards.
The C's rallied in the fourth, but they went a little three-crazy, particularly Rasheed Wallace, who went 0-for-6 for the game...including 0-for-5 in the final quarter. Said Doc Rivers: "The only thing I didn't like, with 3 1/2 minutes left, instead of searching for wide-open two-pointers, we went into 3 mode. And I didn't think we had to do that. That, to me, was uncharacteristic of us."The Minnesota Timberwolves:
Sure they got blown out 87-72 by a horrible Bucks team, and yeah they've started the season only 1-5. But on the bright side, they only gave up 13 points off the 22 turnovers they committed. That's something...right?The New Orleans Hornets:
Is Chris Paul going to have to choke a bitch? Maybe. This season's latest low for the Hornets was a 107-90 home loss to the Craptors despite 21 points, 7 rebounds and 18 assists from CP3. Mind you, this is the same Toronto team that recently gave up 115 points to the Memphis Grizzlies...which makes New Orleans' 90 points seem all the more pathetic.
Defense might have been an issue for the Bourbon Street Buzzers, considering the Craptors went 11-for-18 from beyond the arc in the second half. The eight treys they nailed in the third quarter set a franchise record for any quarter. Said Byron Scott: "Out of the eight 3-pointers made, I saw us contend two. I saw a lack of energy. For the life of me, I can't understand why we came out without any energy." If Scott is still employed by the All-Star break, I'll be very surprised.Mike Brown, letting-us-know-who's-who machine:
After King Crab scored 33 points in a routine 100-91 drubbing of the Knicks, Brown said: "LeBron was obviously LeBron." All that was missing was 'Bron speaking in third person. Then we'd really
know who LeBron is.Larry Hughes, quote machine:
In the first quarter, King Crab dropped 19 points (8-for-9) on his old buddy Big Shot Larry, who said: "I did my job in making him take tough shots and he did his job in making those tough shots." Uh...good job, Larry.The Golden State Warriors:
What's that smell? Dookie, perhaps
? No, that poop smell is actually the Golden State Warriors, who lost by 28 points at home to...the Clippers?! Oh dear, sweet, merciless God. How does that even happen? The Other L.A. Team shot an unthinkable (especially for them) 58 percent from the field. Even freaking Sebastian Telfair scored 13 points on 6-for-12 shooting. And lest you think they made up for it offensively, I should point out Golden State shot 34 percent and committed 19 turnovers. Said Anthony Morrow: "We really just fell apart." No kidding.Stephen Jackson, martyr machine:
After the Clippers got done beating his team like a baby seal, Captain Jack said: "If you're going to blame somebody, I'll take the blame. I've been doing it since I got here." Aww. Poor Jackie. Hey, Stephen, here's a coupon for a free hug, redeemable at any time.The San Antonio Spurs:
After restocking in the offseason, the Spurs were supposed to win 60-plus games and possibly dethrone the Lakers in the West. And yet, after losing 96-84 to the Blazers in Portland, San Antonio is 0-3 on the road and 2-3 overall. And don't blame the new guys...the Spurs' Big Three of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili combined to shoot 10-for-32 from the field. Oh, and Parker had to leave the game with a sprained ankle. Bad times all around.
After the dust had settled, San Antonio had lost their first three road games for the first time in 16 seasons. And if you're looking for other anti-Spurs evidence, how's this: after finishing with only 14 points against the Blazers, Duncan has scored 15 points or less in four of five games this season.The Oden Watch:
After committing 5 fouls against the Spurs, Greg Oden has committed 5 personals in five out of six games. And in the other game, he committed 4 fouls.Chris' Friday Lacktion Report:
Hawks-Bobcats: Jason Collins tossed a piece of masonry and gave up the rock once for a +2 suck differential in 3:46, also good for a 1:0 Madsen-level Voskuhl. While fellow dirty bird Randolph Morris meowed in celebration once at the charity stripe in a simultaneous stint, he also fouled thricely for a 3:1 Voskuhl.Allen Iverson:
Wizards-Pacers: Fabulous Fabricio Oberto has emerged as a prefab starter to sop up minutes for the Wizards, with surprisingly contributory results. Tonight, in 11:03, he even had a 100% shooting percentage (on one shot) and two helpers - but he also gave up the rock twice and fouled five times, leading to a 7:4 Voskuhl.
Big man bawful spread to Andray Blatche, who soured a 15:28 that had two blocks, one made free throw, and three boards with four fouls, five bricked field goals, and a giveaway for a 5:3 Voskuhl of his own.
Pistons-Magic: Ben Wallace chimes into the report today, despite a one-shot 100% shooting percentage and a board in 17:24 as a starter - four fouls leave him with a 4:3 Voskuhl.
Suns-Celtics: While the C's finally lost their first game of the year, it wasn't for lack of effort in the non-contributory category - JR Giddens put on a Tanooki suit for a 5 second Super Mario!!!!!
Raptors-Hornets: The Raptors scavenged effectively in their win over New Orleans. Rasho Nesterovic itched out a board in 6:08, only to foul thricely and add a brick and giveaway to that total, for a 4:1 Voskuhl. Sonny Weems sang loonie tunes to celebrate the minting of 2 trillion! And Patrick O'Bryant countered a rebound in 2:01 with two fouls and a brick for a Madsen-level 2:1 Voskuhl.
Bucks-Wolves: Milwaukee's Kurt Thomas earned a 2:1 Madsen-level Voskuhl in 4:36 via foul and giveaway against board, while Brian Cardinal bricked twice in 4:34 for Minnesota and earned a +2.
Clippers-Warriors: Mikki Moore may have appeared tonight as the starting center at the Oracle, but despite four boards in 18:32, four fouls and three turnovers coupled with a brick led to a 7:4 Voskuhl.
Grizzlies-Lakers: Memphis's Hasheem Thabeet and Marcus Williams racked up twin 1.1 trillions.
Spurs-Blazers: Portland's Juwan Howard handed down a 1.25 trillion.
After scoring 8 points (2-for-5) in a fairly unsurprising 114-98 road loss to the Lakers on Friday night, Allen Iverson...left. As in, left his team. Indefinitely
. Supposedly, The Not Answer -- or, as stephanie g
called him, The Cancer -- is simply taking a leave of absence for personal reasons. I can only assume that's code for "selfish prima donna who refuses to come off the bench." As Iverson himself put it: "I'm not a reserve basketball player. I've never been a reserve all my life and I'm not going to start looking at myself as a reserve."
I blanch every time someone (as Bill Simmons did in his new book) suggests that Iverson ranks among the all-time greats. Was he a great scorer and a fantastic one-man show? Absolutely. Was he tough as nails? No question. But given the facts and circumstances, would anyone want to have Allen Iverson as a teammate ever again? To me, that says something.The Denver Nuggets:
The previously undefeated Nuggets suffered a winless weekend, and their second loss was a 25-point beating at the hands of a team that had just lost by 20 to the Charlotte Bobcats. If anything, these back-to-back defeats should prove that discussing Carmelo Anthony's eligibility for MVP five games into the season is a tad bit premature. 'Melo was 1-for-8 after halftime, by the way.The Boston Celtics:
Excuse me for not being terribly impressed by a 10-point win over a terrible New Jersey Nyets team that had only eight players available for doodie, er, duty. You'd think that, facing a crippled team, the C's could do a little better than scoring a season-low 86 points, right? Wrong.Rasheed Wallace:
He's 0-for-10 on threes in the past two games.Bobcats-Bulls:
Just call this a game nobody deserved to win. The two teams combined for 39 turnovers. The Bulls couldn't defend the three, the 'Cats couldn't protect their defensive backboards. Even when it looked like Chicago was going to ice the game, they missed five straight free throws in the final 1:20 to keep Charlotte's hopes alive. But, of course, the Bobcats have no hope. And somehow, against all reason, the Bulls sit alone atop the Central Division. In other news, up is down, in is out, and C-A-T actually spells dog.The Toronto Raptors:
Just when it looks like the Craptors might not be as bad as you think...they prove you were right the first time. The Toronto players were props on defense, as Dallas scored 129 points on 62 percent shooting. For some historical perspective, the Mavs hadn't shot that well from the field since November of 2007.The New York Knicks:
When ESPN headline writers start referring to you
as "the lowly Knicks," you know there's a problem. Or, in New York's case, a great many problems. The Bricks fell to 1-6 on the season after a 102-87 corn-holing by a lousy Bucks team, and if team management really thinks LeBron James would ever in a gajillion years want anything to do with this team, then I've got a perfect clone of Wilt Chamberlain to sell them. Cheap. No, really, Donnie. Call me.]
Oh, and how bad is the Bricks' defense? Here's what Milwaukee's Brandon Jennings had to say: "They kept giving us a lot of open shots. They were giving us so many easy shots." Wow.Mike D'Antoni, unintentionally dirty quote machine:
"I think we were all stunned. I've taken a licking before, but I don't know what's worse that that."The Utah Jazz:
If the Jazz haven't hit rock botton yet, then they got pretty damn close on Saturday night, losing at home to the Sacramento Kings. And in case you've forgotten: the Kings are without Kevin Martin. To make matters worse, Utah got lit up by rookie Tyreke Evans, who sent 16-for-19 from the line and scored 32 points. It was the second-most points a player 20 years old or younger has ever scored against the Jazz, more even than LeBron James (29 points in January of 2004) or Kevin Durant (29 points in January of 2009). Said Jerry Sloan: "WHY, GOD? WHHHHHYYYYYYY!?"The Memphis Grizzlies:
They fell to 1-6 after a road loss to the Clippers. 'Nuff said.Chris' Saturday Lacktion Report:
Nuggets-Hawks: Denver's Anthony Carter lost the rock once for a +1 suck differential in 7:31, while Malik Alen mined a 2.25 trillion. Countering this lacktion attack was a successful push of non-effort from several Hawks, starting with Jason Collins's +1 via brick in 2:16. Zaza Pachulia blocked a shot and took down a board in 9:18, but one brick and five fouls led to a 5:1 Voskuhl!The Philadelphia 76ers:
Celtics-Nets: Doc Rivers apparently likes to keep the Wii plugged in, as newcomer Lester Hudson stomped on a Goomba rather quickly for a 4 second Super Mario!
Bobcats-Bulls: Charlotte's Nazr Mohammed wagered on willful lacktivity, and collected in his 3:05 stint with two fouls and a giveaway for a +3 that doubled down as a 3:0 Voskuhl! On the other end of the court, two new mannequins from Vinny Del Negro's squad appeared on the ledger this evening. Jannero Pargo bricked once from the Magnificent Mile and turned the ball over once as well for a +2 in 4:01, while James Johnson earned a +3 in 4:56 via foul, giveaway, and missed shot.
The Pistons were missing Tayshaun Prince (back) and Rip Hamilton (ankle). The Sixers weren't missing anybody. And yet, despite the presence of Elton "The 80 Million Dollar Man" Brand (6 points, 3-for-10), Philly was manhandled inside by Ben Wallace (16 boards) and the rest of the Pistons, who won the rebounding battle 51-39 and outscored them 42-26 in the painted area. Bonus stat: Detroit had 19 offensive rebounds through three quarters...during which time the Sixers yanked down only 17 defensive boards. REBOUNDING FAIL.
Said Willie Green: "This was one of those games where we just couldn't get anything going. It was one of those games that could have gone either way, but they got too many easy baskets in the paint. We need to do a better job rebounding."The Washington Wizards:
Generals are morphing back into the same sadsack bunch they were last season, even with Gilbert Arenas. The Phoenix Suns strolled into town and dropped the home team to 2-5, winning by double-digits despite 16 first-half turnovers. Washington's offense was like caked mud, shooting 39 percent and finishing with more turnovers (17) than assists (15). And this too-familiar performance gave Flip Saunders a migraine: "It's been a never-ending thing here lately. We're struggling offensively, and that's putting a lot of undue pressure on the defense. We're just not there. We don't make that one extra pass. We're taking too many contested shots. If we were a hockey team, we'd have no hockey assists -- you know, the pass that leads to the pass." No, Flip. Nobody who watches Wizards basketball knows what a pass that leads to the pass is.
Flip was in such a sour mood, he benched Andray Blatche -- the team's co-leading scorer -- for the final four and a half minutes. Why? Explained Saunders: "He was dead tired. He can't even run up and down the court. He had four straight mental mistakes. Andray can't play the major minutes." Way to instill your player with confidence, Flip. I can't understand why your team turned on you when you were coaching in Detroit...Amare Stoudemire:
Uh...I'm pretty sure that's not legal, Sun Tzu. (Thanks to Shayan
for the pic.)This is the closest you'll ever come to seeing him play defense.The Orlando Magic:
The Magicians were playing yet again without Rashard Lewis (suspension) and Vince Carter (vaginal soreness), and then they lost Ryan Anderson to an ankle injury. But a 28-point loss to the Thunder? Really, guys?!
Stan Van Gundy was not
pleased, and, as usual, he let everybody know about it: "We're not a good basketball team right now. I've been saying that, but nobody's listening. We're totally predicated on shooting. We do not have any kind of defensive mindset, we don't have much toughness and we're not very smart. So, right now we're not a very good team." No fair, Stan. I'm listening. And I totally, 100 percent agree. You're not a very good team right now. Happy?
Bonus bawful: Not only did Orlando shoot a miserable 36 percent (3-for-16 from distance) and shank 13 of their 34 free throws, they let the Thunder hit nearly 60 percent of their shots and 56 percent of their treys. Were they practicing some kind of "no hand in the face" drill or something? Note also that they lost by almost 30 despite having 19 more FTAs than the Thunder.The Minnesota Timberwolves:
Kurt Rambis sure has the Triangle sizzling: Minny had five players in double figures. Now if only they'd had one more player score 24 points, they could have won! Instead, they fell to 1-6 and have now lost six straight. Does his inheriting of this crappy team count as a second clotheslining of Rambis by Kevin McHale? I'd like to think so.The Golden State Warriors:
And you thought it couldn't get any worse than a 28-point loss to the Clippers! Well, okay, fair enough, it really can't get much worse than that short of the contents of a Porta-Potty getting dumped on them. But still, losing 120-107 to the Kevin Martin-less Kings was pretty craptastic. I mean, Golden State finished the weekend -41 to the Clippers and Kings. Do we have a flavor of fail for that?
Shayan from the Raptors blog Mediocre Forever
wrote in to say: "God I love watching the Warriors crumble further with each game, is that evil? I haven't enjoyed watching an organization this dysfunctional and unintentionally funny since Isiah ran the Knicks. I mean, you have an 'all the players hate him' coach in Don Nelson who's more than worn out his welcome, who is for some inexplicable reason not playing Anthony Randolph (their most promising player) enough, Monta 'The Moped' Ellis proclaiming before the start of the season he can't play with lottery pick Stephen Curry, and then of course, the one and only Stephen 'I don't wanna be here and I ain't backin' away from that' Jackson. And how could you not laugh with his comment like 'Another beatdown, what can I say?' after getting pounded by the...get ready for this...Kevin Martin-less Sacramento Kings!!! If they had cameras on the team 24/7, it would be a reality show hit. And you would watch it, admit it." Actually, I'm not sure I could stand it. It would be like watching rabid dogs being euthanized all day long. That's not exactly chicken soup for the soul.It was just that kind of weekend for the Warriors...The New Orleans Hornets:
The former "Team of Tomorrow!" suffered yet another loss that brands them as the "The One-Hit Wonder of 2007-08." Due to injury, the Lakers had to replace Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum with DJ Mbenga and Shannon Brown -- yes, you read that correctly -- and yet New Orleans still lost by 16. And it was only that close because of garbage time (the Hornets outscored L.A. 30-22 in the meaningless fourth quarter). Said Mamba: "We believed this was going to be a really, really tough game." Added Phil Jackson: "We had a little easier time than I had anticipated. We were really prepared for a rush that they make in the second half, and they never got to that."
The epitaph of the game -- and maybe of the Hornets as the team -- was spoken by Chris Paul: "They beat us in all aspects of the game. Kobe got going and Mbenga got going, and they looked like the Lakers. ... We're just trying to find something that works. We're missing defense and the ability to score." Oh, you're only missing defense and offense? No problem! That's just...oh, wait...
(P.S. My favorite part of that quote was "...and Mbenga got going...." And Paul was being totally serious. Yikes.)
Bonus bawful: From the AP recap: "New Orleans coach Byron Scott began the trip by bumping shooting guard Morris Peterson from the starting lineup in favor of Brown, who had played just eight minutes all season. Peterson started the Hornets' first six games, but made just 34.1 percent of his shots while playing defense that didn't please Scott. Immediately after the opening tip, Brown turned the ball over to Bryant for a drive and a dunk." COACHING FAIL. I promise Scott won't be the coach by the All-Star break.The Associated Press, unintentionally dirty headline machine:
From the Hornets-Lakers recap
: "Lakers coast past Hornets despite lack of size." Hey now, Associated Press. No need to get so personal.Chris' Sunday Lacktion Report:
Magic-Thunder: Anthony Johnson pulled a 3.6 trillion out of a hat for Orlando.
Labels: Allen Iverson, Worst of the Weekend