The officiating: I hate that I even have to bring this up again...but it was pretty bawful and pretty much everybody's talking about it. (Heck, Kobe was asked about it during his postgame press conference.) It wasn’t quite as bawful as American Idol winner Lee DeWyze's rendition of the national anthem, but, I mean, 58 personal fouls? On his live blog of the game, ESPN's Bill Simmons said: "That was the rare game where both fan bases will complain about the refs afterwards." It's true. There were phantom fouls, make-up calls, nonsense whistles, and one bizarre late-game review that went against the Lakers when it seemingly shouldn't have.

Seriously, how do you blow a review? The only possible defense I can come up with is that we don't know exactly what the refs were seeing on their monitor. Their footage may not have been as clean or provided as many angles as what ABC was showing the television audience. Plus, if you're an NFL fan and understand the "100 percent conclusive evidence" rule, it makes at least a little sense...but only a very little.

There was one telling sequence in which Ray Allen won an Oscar, er, drew Kobe's fourth foul on a flop, then got tagged himself when Derek Fisher flopped on the other end. The only thing missing was the banjo music. Later, Rajon Rondo stole the ball from Kobe and fell out of bounds, only he flailed enough to draw Kobe's fifth. Still later, Kobe earned free throws when (I’m assuming) a single molecule from Ray Allen collided with some random air molecules between him and Kobe. Oh, and let's not forget that there was plenty of contact on many of L.A.'s playoff record 14 blocked shots, but Big Baby was called for a foul on a totally clean block of an Andrew Bynum dunk attempt.

This wasn't even a case of "tightly called versus loosely called" -- it was tight the whole way -- it was more a case of too many calls period, many of which made no real sense. Unless David Stern wants to kill the flow of the games and render the Finals somewhat unwatchable. If that’s the case, then mission misery accomplished.

By the by, can people please stop justifying the FTA discrepancy by stating (incorrectly) that the C's were shooting threes. Here are some numbers:

Field Goal Selection
Layups: 12-33
Jumpers: 22-48
Dunks: 2-2
Scoring Breakdown
FGs: 36-84
3FG: 11-17
FT: 20-26

Field Goal Selection
Layups: 6-11
Jumpers: 19-53
Dunks: 4-4
Scoring Breakdown
FGs: 29-70
3FG: 4-21
FT: 31-41
That's right: Lakers took more threes and more jumpers overall despite all the foul shots. And Boston took it to the rack enough to finish with two dunks and 33 layup attempts...the latter of which they hit only 12.

Speaking of numbers, Basketbawful reader Sorbo provided these:

Thought this was interesting:

Game 1: 56 total fouls (26 LA/28 BOS)
Game 2: 58 fouls (29 each)

Reg. Season (two meetings)-
Jan. 31(LA win): 40 fouls (21 LA/19 Bos)
Feb. 18 (Bos win): 38 fouls (18 LA/20 Bos)

Comparing two games, we've seen a 70% increase in foul calling in the Finals compared to the regular season.
As always, I'm just sayin'.

LeBron James: I hate that I have to bring this up at all. It's the friggin' NBA Finals...but LeBron keeps popping up everywhere. At this point, I’m afraid of going to the bathroom and finding out somebody has switched my usual toilet paper with another brand that has King Crab’s face on every square. (Actually, on second thought, that sounds like a great idea.)

Over the weekend, the Chicago Bulls made a deal with Celtics assistant coach Tom Thibodeau and the biggest news of that signing was that World Wide Wes -- who has been whispering that LeBron is leaning heavily toward the Bulls -- runs the company that represents 'Bron and Thibodeau. Forget the fact that Boston’s assistant coach and defensive mastermind effectively turned in his two weeks notice during the NBA Finals…his decision might impact LeBron! LeBron!! LeBronLeBronLeBron!!!

Things got even crazier when, again in his live blog, Simmons insinuated that the President of the freaking United States and the secretary of education are colluding to get LeBron to go to Chicago. And this doesn't even touch on the fact that the Cavaliers are cleaning house -- goodbye Mike Brown and Danny Ferry -- so LeBron will stay, or that Pat Riley has concocted a plan to get LeBron and Chris Bosh to accept less money to sign with Miami. Oh, and there was all sorts of buzz that LeBron was going to attend Game 2 of the Finals, only he backed out at the last minute.

And now here I am, talking about LeBron when I don't want to be. He has made me the very thing I hate. I’d damn him to hell, but I know in my heart that hell will not have him [/Dr. Loomis voice]

The Los Angeles Lakers: Oh, hey, we had a playoff game, didn't we? Right. So let's look at some facts: Paul Pierce was apparently playing with an eye patch on both eyes and finished 2-for-11. Kevin Garnett got into early foul trouble and never got out of it. He ended up with 6 points (2-for-5) and had more fouls (5) than rebounds (4). But the Celtics won anyway. In L.A. After everybody left them for dead again. Isn't that kind of like finding out that the fat dude from Superbad is dating Scarlett Johansson? Don't worry. He's not dating her. Otherwise, this post would be written in the blood spurting from my wrists.

There's been an awful lot of talk about Kobe Bryant guarding Rajon Rondo and how it's a key to victory. Now, I’ve gone on record as saying that strategy could backfire. After all, Rondo is way better than he was in 2008 and there's always a distinct possibility that Ray Allen -- the guy Kobe would be guarding otherwise -- could blow up like a bottle of Diet Coke filled with Mentos, right?

Well, how'd that defensive switch work out for the Lakers? I'll tell you: Rondo had his fifth career playoff triple-double (19 points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists) and Ray Allen finished with a game-high 32 points (11-for-20) while setting a new NBA playoff record for three-pointers made (8).

Sad trombone.

In Game 1, Rondo was hesitant. In Game 2, he was aggressive as hell. He actually pushed the ball, which in reality is his biggest advantage over whoever guards him. And his 12 boards were a game-high. You read that correctly. And he had twice as many rebounds as Andrew Bynum. You also read that correctly.

Meanwhile, Allen -- who was victimized by the Phantom Foul Menace in Game 1 -- was just ridiculous. I can't even say he played well because his shooting seemed to defy the laws of nature on which life as we know it is based. Phil Jackson eventually switched Kobe onto Allen and it helped slow Ray down...but the switch came too late. The damage had been done.

The flames erupting out of Allen’s fingertips led to the inevitable "hot hand" discussion on TrueHoop (Henry Abbott once posted the results of a study that supposedly proves the hot hand is the Snuffleupagus of basketball...that is, it does not exist).

As for L.A.'s defense on Mr. Shuttlesworth, TrueHoop's Kevin Arnovitz breaks down how Ray Allen gets open:

Pau Gasol (25 points, 7-for-10, 8 rebounds, 6 blocked shots) continued to rip through Boston's frontcourt like an industrial strength weed-whacker, and Andrew Bynum (21 points, 7 blocks) was killing it inside too. Those two guys and L.A.'s 41-26 advantage in free throw attempts kept the Lakers in the game. But despite the fact that Gasol and Bynum were as hot inside as Allen was out, the Lakers shot only 40 percent as a team (including 5-for-22 on threes) and got outrebounded 44-39. And get this: The Celtics outscored them 36-26 in the paint. Who'd a thunk?

The Celtics got outworked and outfought in Game 1. In Game 2, that's what happened to the Lakers. And you know who helped swing the effort needle toward the Celts? Big Baby, baby! Dude toughed it out. There was one possession in which his shot got blocked, what, four or five times? Next possession, he goes right at L.A.’s bigs and hit a short hook. I guess he’s all pumped up about the prospect of meeting President Obama...

Glen, if you stat cursed the Celtics out of the Finals by saying that, I will end you. But great game!

Kobe Bryant: Like Garnett, Kobe spent most of the game in foul trouble. And there wasn't enough contact on his last two fouls to even qualify for a ticky-tac description. But his regular-season-stats-defying shooting cooled off big time. He went 8-for-20 from the field and only 2-for-7 from downtown. He had a team-high 6 assists, but only 1 of them came after the first quarter. And although he had 4 steals, he also finished with a game-high 5 turnovers, including a poke-away by Rondo with 40 seconds left that helped kill any possibility of a Lakers comeback.

At various points, Mamba insisted on forcing up the same tough shots that have been falling for him over the last several games...only they kinda didn't. What's more, his vaunted defense didn't seem to have much of an effect on Rondo and he got fed a three-pointer right after he was switched onto Allen. Rough night all around. But not as rough as the one this guy had...

Ron Artest: The line: 41 minutes, 6 points, 1-for-10 from the field, 1-for-6 from beyond the arc, 3-for-8 from the free throw line, 5 rebounds, an assist, 3 turnovers, 6 fouls. Looks like the Celtics figured out who they want taking shots for the Lakers, huh?

And although his defense was a big reason why The Half Truth struggled to score, Artest failed to realize that the calls were getting even tighter at the end of the game. The result was two fouls in nine seconds on the same possession with under four minutes to go. And both fouls were the same: He was body-bumping the hell out of Pierce. Now, Artest had been allowed to bulldog Paul all night, so maybe you can forgive him for being overly aggressive on the first foul. But that whistle should have been instructive. Instead, Artest kept it up and got tagged again...with his fifth foul.

It was vintage Ron Artest. He's never going to pull back on the aggression. He can’t.

Anyway, that two-foul sequence should have been in indicator to P-Jax that Ron was going "Ron-Ron" on him. But Artest has apparently wormed his way into Phil's Circle of Trust. In fact, I would say that Artest has officially entered the "Rodman in Chicago" zone. However, that trust nearly bit Jackson and the Lakers in the ass with a little over a minute remaining and the Lakers down 98-90. Crazy Pills received the ball and then proceeded to bring it up court and spend most of the possession aimlessly dribbling through Celtic defenders. I swear, it looked like a game of Pac-Man. His wacky ball-handling exhibition ended in an idiotic turnaround 20-footer with a hand in his face.

The possession was saved when Gasol nabbed the offensive board and fed it to Kobe for a trey...but damn, watching that had to have Lakers fans wetting themselves and/or chucking heavy, blunt things at their TVs.

Derek Fisher: Believe it or not, Fisher finished with more rebounds (7) than Bynum, Garnett and Kendrick Perkins. Not bad for a wee little guy. But the Lakers don’t rely on his rebounding, they count on him to hit big shots. And he didn't. Fisher went 2-for-8 from the field and 0-for-2 on threes. And, uhm, that Kobe-on-Rondo defensive switch left him on, er, Ray Allen. Forced him, in fact, to chase Ray around. Which didn't work. Let's face it: At this point, there's no hiding Fisher. He's great for leadership and big shot-making (most of the time), but he's a loss defensively.

Oh, and then there was this…

Lamar Odom: Everybody talks about how Odom is the team's X-Factor, which always makes me think about the team of super-powered mutants in the Marvel Comics universe. Well, if Odom has a mutant power, it's the ability to appear and disappear. Only, apparently, it's not a conscious just happens at random. And he sure did disappear in Games 1 and 2. Last night's "effort" contributed 3 points, 5 boards and 5 fouls (in only 15 minutes!) to L.A.'s cause.

I guess you could say foul trouble is taking Lamar out of the game.

Said Jackson: "[Odom] got, bang-bang, two fouls and I turned to my crew and said, 'Do you think he can play through this?' And as I was talking to them, he got his third foul. So obviously he couldn't play through the sequence."

Added Odom: “Maybe I shouldn’t play defense.” Somewhere, Amar’’’’’’e Stoudemire is nodding vigorously.

Andrew Bynum, poster child: Dream Shake, baby!

Gotta love how Jeff Van Gundy was all like, “That’s a Goran Dragic move, Bynum got Dragic’d!” and Mike Breen had to correct him because, in fact, Rondo has been doing that move for a while now, especially this season.

Doc Rivers: Allen, Pierce and Rondo all logged 40+ minutes. Rondo didn't get his first breather until late in the game. When the Lakers came back to take a brief lead late in the game, the Celtics looked flat-out gassed. With the quick turnaround between Games 2 and 3, Doc’s “eh, why should I bother to develop the bench and/or a consistent rotation” strategy might end up backfiring big time.

This was kinda funny, though:

Notice how Brian Scalabrine went after Rivers and started massaging him? The only thing missing was the happy ending. Scals is all like, “Doc! Doc! I’m still here! You don’t need to sub in Shelden Williams! I have six fouls too!”

Jeff Van Gundy, unintentionally dirty quote machine: At one point, JVG had this to say about the Lakers: "They're coming on every penetration." H/T to Basketbawful reader winnetou.

Ray Allen, quote machine: "I didn't think it was easy, getting the 3's up in the air," Allen said. "You look up and everybody is probably thinking, 'How did this guy get open?' But there's so much going on there -- big screens, misdirection plays. I thought they did everything they could to keep me from shooting 3's, [but we] worked tirelessly."

Rajon Rondo, quote machine: "The best part about getting a triple-double is getting a win," Rondo said. "That's pretty much it. It would be pointless to get a triple-double and lose the game."

Kobe Bryant, quote machine: Love this little gem from the AP recap: "It's a series," Bryant yawned. "You're trying to stay even-keel. You don't get too high, don't get too low after a win or a loss. You just go into the next one and take care of business."

By the way, gotta love the way Kobe pretended not to care about losing the game when you know it was killing him, especially when Ray-Ray was so hot.

Phil Jackson, quote machine: So, uh, why’d you let Ray Allen crucify your boy Derek Fisher so much?

"Well, you know, when they take away any bumps, when Fish is trying to make him divert his path and they don't allow him to do that, they call fouls on Fish and that really gives [Allen] an opportunity to take whatever route he wants to make of the [screeners]. That really makes it very difficult. We just have to adjust to the ballgame to whatever the referees are going to call. Are they going to allow us to take direct line cuts away from him so he has to divert his route, [or] get a foul called on Fisher? That makes for a totally different type of ballgame. Then Fish has to give the routes that [Allen] wants to run in and then he's got to play from behind all the time."

Uh huh. Well, how 'bout Kobe. What would you say about his play?

"I wasn't happy with those foul calls [against him]. Those were unusual calls. It really changed the [complexion] of this ballgame."

Huh. I see. So I guess P-Jax wasn't too thrilled with the officiating. Would all the Lakers fans who eye-rolled me and accused me of whining after Game 1 like to step up and accuse Jackson of whining? I mean, are you eye-rolling him now? No, really. I'm curious. Sarcastic, but curious.

Lacktion report: From chris: "Shelden Williams fathered a 4:1 Voskuhl in 4:13 by countering one board with a brick, rejection, and a pair each of fouls and turnovers."

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Blogger Dan B. said...
You forgot to give Blogger a WOTN entry for being down most of the day for many of us.

By the way, I think I just got whistled for a foul while sitting at my desk.

Blogger Andrei said...
Do the Celtics still have to pay Garnett the remainder of his contract even though he's already dead?

Anonymous Sorbo said...
Sweet to have you back, Bawful. Looks like the connection is finally up.

The defensive scheme L.A. has on Garnett in this series is completely baffling. They keep double-teaming him (Kobe did it at least twice, Brown did it once and left Allen wide open for a three). Do the Lakers know that KG is playing on a bad knee and shouldn't be doubled? Is Gasol that big a wuss not to guard a one-legged man by himself?

KG is a really good passer, so the double team just leads to an interior pass to Rondo, who either lays it in or passes to an open man on the switch.

Oh, and the officiated sucked. I can't write anything about either game without mentioning this. Call it a reflex action.

Blogger Ash said...
I know you were aiming your "Lakers took more jumpshots!" thing at me (or someone who said the same thing), so let me use the very stats you posted to rebutt.

Because the Lakers show only 11 layup attempts that pretty much proves that all the ones that didn't show up, were layup attempts that got canceled out by the foul call (an ensuing free throws).

But yes, the Lakers did take more jumpshots.

Anonymous The Wonderful Mr. Anonymous said...

Is there any breakdown as to layups/dunks off of transition buckets. I thought most of Celtics layups came on transition and generally 'bawful' defense from LA (see the Kobe/Gasol mix up which led to a wide open Rondo layup). There were at least two or three of those buckets, which wouldn't have led to fouls.

I thought refs killed the flow of the game more so than the numerosity of the calls. The first 5 mins of the game is what this series would look like if the refs didn't disrupt the flow.

I think Pierce should get a WOTN mention. He's been invisible for most of the first two games. And it's not like he has a tough defensive assignment. Doc stuck with Ray and sometimes Rondo on Kobe.

Anonymous AK Dave said...
U R a KB24 H8r LOL!!1!

Seriously though, Ray Allen has officially renewed my man-crush on him. I'm gay for Ray. Put that on a t-shirt, Celtics fans. I LOVE YOU RAY-RAY! Can I call you Ray-Ray? No? Oh... :(

I came into this series thinking Lake-show in 6 but the C's are winning me over with their hustle and green-ness.

And while Laker fans can take solace in the fact that Ray Allen went the fuck OFF and the C's barely won, they should be worried by the fact that Paul Pierce and KG combined for 4-16 and LAL still lost. At...home...

In any case: it's a series now. Shit just got real. Buckle up, kids.

Anonymous AK Dave said...
@The Wonderful Mr. Anonymous:

But...but Paul Pierce is the GREATEST PLAYER IN THE WORLD!!

Blogger Dooj said...
My wife put it perfectly when watching the game last night. When describing Kobe, "When he's on the bench, he looks like he needs to be back out there. Almost as if he thinks, 'There's no way they can do this without me'." On Gasol, "I don't like the way he looks. He looks like a little bitch."

On a sidenote: where are all the Laker trolls?

Blogger Basketbawful said...
I know you were aiming your "Lakers took more jumpshots!" thing at me (or someone who said the same thing), so let me use the very stats you posted to rebutt.

Because the Lakers show only 11 layup attempts that pretty much proves that all the ones that didn't show up, were layup attempts that got canceled out by the foul call (an ensuing free throws).

But yes, the Lakers did take more jumpshots.

The larger point was that, despite what people are claiming, the Celtics were every bit as aggressive taking it to the hoop as the Lakers were. They simply weren't getting as many calls. As I said, some of that was great interior D...some was uncalled contact.

Anonymous Sorbo said...
@ Dooj (trolls comment

Sorry, I didn't realize I'm supposed to talk shit after my team loses. Lakers will be fine, although I expect some home cookin' in Boston (home of home cookin') on Tuesday. At least if it's home cookin', it will be consistently one-sided rather than the officiating cluster fuck that's been Games 1 and 2.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Mr. Bawful - I want to point out that as a Laker fan I never said you whined about the officiating in Game 1, nor did I ever predict that Kobe would lock down Rondo. I said Kobe would guard Rondo, but said I had no idea how effective that would be, and I was just as annoyed with the officiating in Game 1 as I was in Game 2. 

I don't think the refs are favoring either team in this series with how they're calling things, but rather are totally disrupting both teams by forcing both teams to abandon their regular rotations as key players are relegated to the benches with foul trouble. I feel like as a result we're all being denied a great series and a great chance to see how these teams really match up with one another. 

I honestly have no idea how to feel about either team heading into the next game cause with so many key people sitting out for so long in these first two games I don't at all have a feel for how anyone is really matching up with anyone else. I hope the refs let these teams mug the hell out of each other moving forward. All this foul trouble for both teams is absurd. 

Anonymous UpA said...
I think all in all, it was a good playoff game and a game that will forever sit on the Laker-Celtics legend as one of the most intriguing ones, nobody knew what the outcome was going to be at all, specially thanks to the Officiating. You called this game Tight on ref, but it was so confusing, I think the reason for those 8 trays by Allen was due to some of the most blatant moving screens in the history of The Finals, Fish was banged up the whole first half.

Cortez, you seem to be the more connoisseur about NBA rules, please, clarify how much a player can push and bang the defender while on a moving screen!

Anonymous The Wonderful Mr. Anonymous said...
I'm a Laker troll, but when a guy breaks a record for 3-pt FGs in a game, you start to view things introspectively.

I love Kobe Bean Bryant(nh), but sometimes iso-Kobe frustrates the hell out of me. Didn't he (and the rest of the damn squad) realize that Gasol was being guarded by Sheldon "The Slumlord" Williams for an extended period in the game? For the Love of God... *sigh*

After I watched the turnovers and ticky-tack fouls, especially considering how the worst championship team in NBA history in FT differential got a 10+ FTA advantage in a Finals game!... I was okay with them losing this one.

I won't even get on Lamar Odom. *facepalm*

But I am relieved that it was only a single digit loss.

Blogger Silva said...
Kobe is starting to annoy me with this "It's all about the defense" thing.

Blogger Dylan said...
Here's the best moment of game 1:

That's Tony Allen's biggest contribution to the NBA Finals. That and missed layups/dunks.

Anonymous UpA said...
@ Dooj

Sorry for not Trolling earlier, I was busy explaining your wife why Kobe has 4 rings and the C's have only won 1 title in like 20 years...

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Dooj - Far as I know there aren't any "trolls" that comment here regularly. If you're asking where the Laker fans are, it looked to me like there were lots of comments from them after the game last night and a bunch here today as well (considering how late this post went up, due to Blogger shitting the bed). So calm down, the Lakers are still well represented here, even after a loss. I'm a Laker fan and I didn't slink away following the Game 6 massacre in 2008, and I'm not going to now either. 

People who want to talk shit about either team in this series should do so at their own peril cause it could easily go either way. That might seem hypocritical of me to say after all the shit I talked about Phoenix in the last round, but I only did that because I knew how it would turn out (and so did almost everyone else). But that's why I haven't talked that same shit about Boston, because even after Game 1 that team still worried me. At the same time, if you think the Lakers are just gonna curl up and roll over I think you're in for a rude awakening. I'm very happy as a Laker fan that Games 6 & 7 are in LA, cause I expect this to be a real back and forth series the whole way. 

Blogger Onandonymous said...
I'm with Yams. The officiating has been consistent -- consistently AWFUL! ZING!
Much respect for any fan (Lakers or Celts) who can be objective and realize that both teams are getting screwed. I'd argue relatively equal screwitude in game one, but way more apathy from the Celtics. Equal screwitude in game two, but way more aggression from the Celtics.
Game three prediction? Pain. They'll let 'em play and it'll get contentious.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
The problem is that the refs have set a precedent in games one and two. Now if the officiating in any of the games changes, it'll further add to the fact that refs can't be consistent from game to game.

The NBA, where refs have more influence than players happen.

Blogger Trey said...
Shelden Williams deserves his own post after the worst four minutes of individual basketball I've ever seen.

Blogger Solieyu said...
What about Paul Pierce's epic potentially stat curse of "we ain't comin' back to L.A." (

A rather bold prediction given his numbers so far. That and the expression on Kobe's face.

Anonymous Czernobog said...
OK, I know Gasol has been killing it this offseason (and through most of the regular season) but there's a thought I want to run by you guys: Pau Gasol factoids. Like the opposite of the Chuck Norris meme.

My contribution so far:

When Pau Gasol talks about his 'peeps' he's literally talking about Peeps.

When Pau Gasol was delivered, he did not need to be slapped on his behind.

There's no chin behind Pau Gasol's beard. Just another pussy.

The MVP of the 2006 world championship game was Jorge Garbajosa.

Blogger Unknown said...
you know the officiating is bad when I asked for joey crawford.

seriously, man. its a FREAKING REVIEW in a 90-93 game. major turning point in the game...

Kg had his whole had on the ball while pushing Pau sure Pau's pinky cannot force the ball out the way it did.

But other than that, it was a hard fought game. Kind of.

Anonymous The Wonderful Mr. Anonymous said...
@ Vasco,

Sorry but Kobe's right. Boston only won that game because of the big stops/turnover in the latter 4th quarter countered with LA's failure to stop Rondo from getting defensive rebounds. Despite Allen's early offensive explosion, LA was only down by 6 at the half. Offense isn't going to determine this series.

Whoever defends the best will win these games. And like Yams said, I see that changing from game to game.

Blogger Cortez said...
"Cortez, you seem to be the more connoisseur about NBA rules, please, clarify how much a player can push and bang the defender while on a moving screen!"

Zero, however the majority of those screens seemed fine to me.

The fact that a [almost certain] hall of fame player knows how to come of screens and hit jump shots (especially when hitting jumpshots is the very attribute he is most recognized for) is not a shocker.

Setting screening aside for a moment, the officiating is pretty bad god damned...both ways.

In my opinion, the Lakers lost because they didn't work to get good shots when they were clearly available. Like out host said, Kobe slipped into his usual nonsense, Artest was artest, and they decided that Gasol wasn't playing well enough so they decided to stop feeding him.

Looking at Bynum start his post up 6-8 feet outside the lane was hilarious (with predictably bad results).

"Kobe is starting to annoy me with this 'It's all about the defense' thing."

He's 100% correct. The Celtics are getting key buckets off of silly ass mental lapses that should not happen.

Leaving Ray Allen to double Perkins (Hell, any Celtics post player!) is beyond retarded.

I'll go further and say the Rondo experiment is flawed also. rondo isn't dumb enough to fall into the Hey, I'm wide open, let me chuck one up, trap.

Kudos to him!

Blogger lordhenry said...
When do the finals start?

So they take out Allen in game 1 and they take out Kobe in game 2. So I imagine they will be hitting perk with that T here in game three to give us a chance to win game 4? Ugh, these finals have been so shitty I'm actually making statements like that.....I hate the Sternstapo.....

Blogger Ash said...
Yeah, I'm done talking. I think this will be a great series and I look forward to all the highs and lows that come with having Ron Artest and Lamar Odom on his/her preferred team.

Blogger Wormboy said...
I feel bad saying this. When Sheldon Williams was at Duke, all the Heels fans here said he looked like he had fetal alcohol syndrome. I took the high ground and never went there, even when Tyler Hansbrough as a FRESHMAN was ripping Williams a new asshole.

Now I look at Williams in the pros, with no partisanship, and I must say, damn, dude is ugly. He really DOES look like he had fetal alcohol syndrome. I feel so bad about myself for saying that! :(

Exhibit A:

Anonymous Baal said...
Talking about Boston needing a breath: "I really had to laugh out loud, when Jeff van Gundy said: I like this move, Doc Rivers trusts his bench..." that was in the beginning of the 4th quater, when Rondo ran out of gas and Robinson played his first seconds... seriously, if you trust a bench, you bring them in, before you're startes are almost dead... you know, Gentry trusted his bench, Doc was hoping, Rondo could go all the way...

Blogger Bing said...
What else should he say Vasco? Even KB knows this wouldn't be cool:
"Imma light this mother up for 50 points tonight - Offense wins championships."

KB is guarded with the media. More so during the Playoffs. I'm sure we will continue to hear the same trite lines over and over until it's done.

Anonymous Sorbo said...
I hate when officiating is this terrible. It makes me don my tinfoil hat and go all conspiracy crazy, thinking that the NBA wants a seven-game series for TV revenue.

Do we have a name for when fans go into crazy conspiracies? Sacramento Game Sixism? The Wade Foul Theorem?

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Mr. Bawful - I want to point out that as a Laker fan I never said you whined about the officiating in Game 1, nor did I ever predict that Kobe would lock down Rondo. I said Kobe would guard Rondo, but said I had no idea how effective that would be, and I was just as annoyed with the officiating in Game 1 as I was in Game 2.

To be clear, I wasn't singling you out, or even (regarding Kobe shutting down Rondo) specific people on this site.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Mr. Bawful - Cool, I was hoping you weren't. Were there really people out there who were saying before this series that Kobe clearly would shut Rondo down? Due to being on the road as much as I've been I haven't been able to read much around the web, but I'm not sure why anyone would make such an assumption. I mean, Rondo lit Kobe's D up in the regular season too. Boston's starting backcourt and how LA would choose to defend them was always a worry for me, much like Detroit's 2004 backcourt worried me.

Blogger senormedia said...
Isn't the Gasol/Garnett out-of-bounds play the one clear example of the "hand is part of the ball" rule?

i.e., Garnett's hand is on the ball (I know, that's being generous), and Gasol hits his hand propelling it out-of-bounds.

When I officiated HS that's how rthe (seldom-used) rule was explained to us.

Note for you "pickup-refs": hand-is-part-of-the-ball does not imply that you can hit the shooter's or dribbler's hand and it not be a foul.

Word verification: culabbi

The Lakers culabbi'd Big Baby at least three times in one sequence.

Blogger Unknown said...
To be fair to Kobe's "D" that dude refuses to respect Rondo. Im fairly confident that a focused Kobe could probobly stop rondo but thats not really based on anything. All in all if he roams around like johnny appleseed rondo will get triple doubles alllll day.

Blogger Fishy said...
To anyone who called you a whiner Sir Bawful is just plain silly... it is natural for fans of a team to complain afterwards about everything from how the other team cheats or the refs favor whoever or how certain players on their team are already on summer vacation (*coughODOMcough*) or *insert common complaint following a loss here*.

I don't think there are very many fans of either team that is going to say, "Well we gave it a good shot for this game! Next one! Wooo! The other team played great but we gotta get them next time! Yay! Go team!"

Blogger @huynhjeff said...
Despite all the bawful last night, did anyone else notice that there was a stretch in the second half, I'm pretty sure in the fourth, where Farmar and Vujacic (still hate him btw) really hustled for the ball and try to keep some momentum going? Should I be proud that that happened, or should I be worried that that's how it's supposed to be usually and that I just witnessed something rare?

In any case, I've always come to this site for some quick overview on the world of bad basketball and I have to say, to have the officiating be SO bad and to have Lebron be SO douchey that it irritates the Messenger of Bawful to report it? The NBA stinks of turd right now and Lebron is it's ringleader.

Blogger Dooj said...
I seem to have pricked a nerve...

I apologize to the regular Laker fans. I just remember there being a ton of Laker trolls on the site when they were winning their series against the Suns.

"Sorry for not Trolling earlier, I was busy explaining your wife why Kobe has 4 rings and the C's have only won 1 title in like 20 years..."

Meh. I hate the Celtics too...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Banjo music? Don't you mean "Yakety Sax"?

Anonymous The Other Chris said...
I feel like that Artest possession deserves a post all of it's own. So, so bawful. I feel like that definitely deserves to take the title of "Worst Possession Ever" from Z-Bo's airballed three. I mean, it was a Raptors/Knicks game. Who cares? (and as a Raptors fan, it saddens me to say that... but the truth hurts.)

But this is the freaking NBA *FINALS*. And I hate Kobe Bryant with a burning passion, but one thing the man can do is close out games. And there's Crazy Pills, having his own wonderful adventure with under two minutes left in the game, while everyone else in the gym wonders what the hell is wrong with him.


Anonymous TransINSANO said...
Ha, I think that might actually be the most confusing example of "hand is part of the ball" since it sounds so backwards. That is how refs usually call that play automatically regardless of who actually touched the ball last. Of course, why bother to review it then?

I guess that's why it's a good thing the NBA has been so open and transparent about officiating since the Donaghy scandal and we have all this stuff explained and rectified before the next game... Oh wait.

Blogger Siddarth Sharma said...
Where I play ball, regardless of who touched it last, if someone pushed your hand while you held the ball and it ends up out of bounds, it's your ball. Isn't it?

Anonymous Sorbo said...
Made a teenie, tiny mistake with my fouls for Game 1. The total fouls are right, but the LA/Bos split is wrong (I think each has one more foul, as the refs want them to have)

Anyone care the Cleveland is courting...Tom Izzo? Really? That will get Lebron to stay: A coach with zero NBA experience. Izzo would be a fool to move. He makes $3M a year and is guarensheed through 2016. He won't make that money at the NBA level, and he'll be coaching Delonte West. Lose-lose

Anonymous TransINSANO said...

Interesting read on the role reversal of the Lakers and Celtics as America's most hated basketball team. Even though any dedicated reader of this site knows the history, it's still hard to imagine that the Lakers were at one time lovable losers.

Sid - No, protect the ball. I haven't read the official NBA rulebook on this or anything, but as far as I know the hand being part of the ball is in reference to incidental contact, meaning it's not a foul if you hit someone's hand while it's on the ball, and even that's in dispute on shot attempts. I feel like it's more lazy officiating rule of thumb than actual rules of basketball. It's just easier to give the ball back to the team that had possession on those plays, the reward for the defense being a broken play/time off the shot clock.

Sorbo - Agree that Izzo shouldn't leave, but certainly not over the money. I'm sure the Cavs aren't trying to entice a name like Tom Izzo with anything that would pay him less than his current contract. As a matter of fact, it was reported that the offer is supposedly around 6 mil a year for up to 5 years, plus perks, and at least a decent chance to coach the league MVP. Yikes, on second thought, he should absolutely take that.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
1st. I've loved Garnett since he and Steph were on their first SLAM cover together and watching this series and his play is like watching your pops get broke down by some shitfootin scrub,twice, in one set down the court.
2nd. Jordan would have shown up chewin on what was left of Delonte's overly tatted neck. James<Jordan
3rd. The only words I can think of regarding James career damaging "world tour" are swagger jacking.

Blogger Preveen said...
I feel real sorry for Baby. Dude played his heart out, and had a great game overall, but how many times in his career is he, as an undersized interior player, gonna get a smotherchicken block like that on a legit 7 footer? I really, really enjoy rejecting peoples shots, and that sorta thing (rejecting someone way taller so solidly) would make my freaking day. And he gets called for a foul.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Preveen - Let's not get all melodramatic. Baby did get all ball, but he also did make contact with Bynum's body, and he did so while jumping toward Bynum rather than straight up, meaning that's technically a foul. It might have been ticky-tac, as so many fouls in this series have been, but it wasn't a phantom call, and thus doesn't really deserve the "poor Baby" treatment a day later like this. I'm guessing he's gotten over it by now, and surely you can too.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
By the way, just letting everybody know, since the officiating sucks donkey balls all the way around, I'm going to ingore it for the rest of the series unless there's some really egregious call that swings a game...which is likely.

Same deal with LeBron. Unless he signs with somebody or eats a baby, he gets no more free press here.

Blogger Silva said...
@ The Wonderful Mr. Anonymous

So it's all about the defense. So fuck Derek Fisher. Why is he playing? Just put a better defender in there. Screw the offense.

Nash is crap. Artest is god.
It's all about defense.

The Lakers lost game 2 because of some great play by Rajon Rondo in the 4th, defensively AND offensively. If he doesn't make his shots it's a different game don't you think?

So it annoys me to see Kobe, the ultimate offensive player saying again and again that it's all about defense.

Blogger Dan B. said...
Vasco -- Don't forget that defense creates offense. Defensive rebounds, steals, and blocked shots lead to transition offense, so you can get a clean shot or a clean path to the basket before the other team's defenders get in place. If you don't stop the other team, you make it harder for yourself to score since your opposition has time to prepare for you coming up the court and playing a slower half-court offense.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
Bawful: I was actually going to skip watching all the games until game 7 because obviously it will be extended there with the shitty refs and obviously the good refs will actually be assigned to those games, so I'd pretend the NBA championship is a 1-game sudden death clincher.

If Boston wins the next two, I think I'll writeup Game 5, because something stupid just has to happen.

Anonymous Medrawt said...
The Other Chris -

I disagree about Artest vs. Randolph. I mean, the comparison is natural, and I spent some time thinking about it, and the Artest play is deliriously delirious. But Artest took the ball, dribbling with his off hand, through the Celtics D; as ludicrous as it sounds, he arguably did what he intended to do. Randolph, isolated five feet behind the three point line with zero defensive pressure, lost the handle and nearly got a back-court violation. No contest.

Blogger Mr. Shrimp said...
Laker fan here: P-Jax does sound like he's whining. A team has to play through the officiating. Both teams have to - with officiating this bad, both teams get screwed, and one just manages to deal with it better.

People keep saying, "This will be a great series," meaning it will be close and likely go 6 or 7 games. I think that it will be close, but it won't be great if the officials don't get out of the way and let the teams play (within reason).

wv: suastati - how Hollinger introduces himself to the ladies

Blogger Cortez said...
"hand-is-part-of-the-ball does not imply that you can hit the shooter's or dribbler's hand and it not be a foul."

That's EXACTLY what it means.

The rule book isn't ambiguous in the least.

Very simple.

"meaning that's technically a foul [Big Baby]."

That was a foul, period. Folks seem to be memorized by the fact that he had all ball with the hand.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
That was a foul, period. Folks seem to be memorized by the fact that he had all ball with the hand.

No. I think people are confused why significant body contact is allowed on some (in fact, many) blocked shots but not allowed on some (in fact, many) others.

In point of fact, Big Baby was the "victim" of significant body contact on a few of his shots, but they went down as blocks in the stat sheet. And heck, I can remember last round when Rajon Rondo got blasted into the stands by Dwight Howard on what was later named the Block of the Night.

As is oftent he case, inconsistency of officiating breeds endless confusion and complaining amongst the masses.

Blogger Cortez said...
"No. I think people are confused..."

The partial comment above sums it up nicely.

The previous poster wasn't arguing whether or not it was a foul relative to other (non) foul call. He thinks it wasn't a foul at all due to the fact that Davis had all ball with the hand.

His point and your point are two different arguments.

He's wrong and you're right, btw.

And a side note, the fact that contact happens doesn't necessitate a foul call.

I was fine with the non-call on Howard's block on Rondo (if I'm remembering the right sequence.)

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Like rulebook interpretations tell us anything about how NBA officials are going to call a game, or any specific play.

And going by your link Cortez, the rulebook is EXTREMELY ambiguous: "when performing normal offensive and defensive movements. " (emphasis added). That's a lot of wiggle room, deciding what constitutes 'normal movements.'

Blogger Cortez said...
"Like rulebook interpretations tell us anything about how NBA officials are going to call a game, or any specific play."

True, and almost totally beyond the point of the original debate. Which was whether or not hitting a shooters (or dribblers) hand is a a foul or not.

The argument wasn't whether or not refs call the games correctly and consistently like advanced cyborgs (obviously not).

"And going by your link Cortez, the rulebook is EXTREMELY ambiguous:"

Since I was responding to someone making the claim that fouling a dribbler or shooter on the hand wasn't a foul the rule book is crystal clear.

...unless you don't consider dribbling and shooting normal offensive movements that is.

In which case you're simply arguing for the sake of arguing.

...or insane.

Good luck, Ace.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
@Bodenlosen Schweinrei:

Good luck, Ace. -Cortez

Don't take the bait dude. Arguing with Cortez about what he said, even if it's in plain black-and-white English, is only going to end in a circular "nuh-uh!" "yuh-huh!" flame-fest.

It will become, well, a Bodenlose Schweinerei. (loosely translates to a bottomless clusterfuck for those of you who don't know.)

The rule is ambiguous, for the reasons you stated.

In which case you're simply arguing for the sake of arguing.

Look who's talking, "Ace"

Blogger Cortez said...
"Don't take the bait dude."

The bait?

Fool, please.

First of all, the sentence regarding "normal" offensive movement isn't even referring to hand/ball contact now that I look at it again.

And even even if it was, there could hardly be anything more normal than dribbling and shooting.

"Arguing with Cortez about what he said..."

Read the posts again skippy, he wasn't arguing anything I said, he was arguing a false point about a rule that is clearly spelled out.

The reasons I said anything in the first place are listed below...

1) I'm bored
2) Bitching about calls (or non calls) because of ignorance of the rules irks me.

I suppose the new definition of "circular flame war" is directly addressing/clarifying questions or false claims with facts.

The rule is clear.

When the ball is in contact with the hand there IS NO FOUL.

"The rule is ambiguous, for the reasons you stated."

Except for the part that explicitly says it's not a foul, that is.

"Look who's talking"

The old 'I know you are, but what am I?' rebuttal. Nice.

Blogger Cortez said...
"...unless you don't consider dribbling and shooting normal offensive movements that is."

Riddle me this anonymous comment savior.

Based on your own (faulty) reading of the 'ambiguous' rule answer this simple question, do you consider shooting & dribbling 'normal' offensive movements?

Don't bother, I'll answer for you.

Of course you do.

If the rule is 'ambiguous' it's only because you haven't taken the time to red it or your reading comprehension level is not up to snuff.

Blogger senormedia said...
Well, I know how I'm defending Cortez if we ever hoop - I'm smacking his hand on every shot and dribble. Rebounding is normal play, as well, so I'll get a slap in there.

Don't call any fouls.

Blogger Preveen said...
Why are you guys arguing on this? I just said I felt sorry for Baby, I didn't offer my interpretation of weather it was an actual foul or not. The guys a fat guy nicknamed "Baby"! Its an achievement that he got up there to absolutely smother the shot. So he made contact and got called. He's not a superstar. I still feel sorry for him. (for the record, I'm a 6 foot fat guy who plays in the interior. Generally about 3rd tallest on the court. We are a short people with no hops. No one can jump high enough to even touch the rim, much less dunk)
Of course, I don't expect passionate Laker fans to feel sorry for Baby, your locked in a Finals battle. But I can. I'm just a basketball fan.

Blogger Cortez said...
"Don't call any fouls."

No worries sparky. I don't call fouls on smacks to the hand if the ball is in my hand because the rule is (and has always been) crystal clear.

Plus, I seriously doubt that you (or anyone else for that matter) are coordinated and quick enough to cleanly smack the hand (and only the hand) of a competent ball handler at will.

Then, Flash, explain how you are going to slap the hand on every shot when the shooting hand is BEHIND THE BALL! (That's assuming you are in front of your assignment)

You're not.

"Rebounding is normal play, as well, so I'll get a slap in there."

Son, please get a qualified adult to teach you how to read and comprehend simple sentences.

Pretty please?

What in holy hell does "hand is part of the ball" and slapping while rebounding have to do with each other?


I repeat...

"First of all, the sentence regarding "normal" offensive movement isn't even referring to hand/ball contact"

The godamned question at hand is even listed under MISUNDERSTOOD rules!

This isn't rocket science. What's wrong with you people?

Basketbawful indeed!

I need a drink!

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Behold: the circular flame war which I predicted.

Cortez, you're too easy to wind up, dude. I think you do need a drink. Throw some valium in there while you're at it.

And for all that shit-talking about your game, you live in Chicago and have yet to play with Bawful, who has promised to post the video, win or lose. Why don't you nut up "sparky"? The rest of us are dying to see your crazy mountain-lion-ass-wiping skillz.

And for someone who claims to be ultra detail-oriented, you misquoted me. I said "flame-fest" not "flame war".


Anonymous Anonymous said...
True, and almost totally beyond the point of the original debate. Which was whether or not hitting a shooters (or dribblers) hand is a a foul or not.

The argument wasn't whether or not refs call the games correctly and consistently like advanced cyborgs (obviously not).

Then why link to the rules at all, if you admit the refs don't call it that way?

The misunderstood rule refers to incidental contact, including the hand is part of the ball statement.
Also, you neglect to describe a "normal" defensive movement. If during a shot attempt, the defender only hits the hand still in contact with the ball, but cause the offensive players arm to move (i.e. knocking it aside), is it a foul? A "normal" defensive play?

Then, Flash, explain how you are going to slap the hand on every shot when the shooting hand is BEHIND THE BALL! (That's assuming you are in front of your assignment)

Coming from the side.

I don't call fouls on smacks to the hand if the ball is in my hand because the rule is (and has always been) crystal clear.

Based upon your responses here, I do not believe this statement.

Don't call me Ace, Chief.

Blogger Cortez said...
"...circular flame war which I predicted"

Ask yourself, why are you actively engaging in the "flame war". Probably the same mental defect that prevents you from comprehending clearly worded 5th grade level sentences in a rule book.

"Cortez, you're too easy to wind up, dude."

Yeah, I should see someone about that.


The irony of someone obviously wound-up yapping about winding someone up is thick!

"And for all that shit-talking about your game"

Shit talking about my game? I've said nothing about my game outside of I like to play hard had a rather non-noteworthy scholastic career.

"you live in Chicago and have yet to play with Bawful, who has promised to post the video, win or lose"

Son, I told you to learn how to read.

1) Bawful and I, have NEVER discussed any sort of one-on-one battle. Why would I, I have two gimpy ankles and a knee with visible calcium deposits. And even if I was prone to challenging total strangers to one-on-one battles, it certainly wouldn't be over the net with people I've never seen play before. Plus, playing one-on-one proves little as far as playing winning team basketball (which I'm well capable of).

There, there is some "shit talking" for you, I guess.

He was talking about someone else with the video posting. Nitwit.

2) We have actually discussed linking up to run some pickup games for fun. But since we are both grown men with various other responsibilities it hasn't happened yet, but no worries, I'm sure it will, Ace.

"The rest of us are dying to see your crazy mountain-lion-ass-wiping skillz."

You've been following me for awhile now I see. You're a bit like Luke Walton's stalker.

Meet me at the Lincoln Park Zoo. I'll wipe my ass with one of those lions right front of your eyes. Then I'll jump out of the pit they keep them in and on top of one of those school buses there on a field trip and sign autographs for the kids, you know, just for giggles!

"Why don't you nut up "sparky"?"

I'm scared, that's why.

"And for someone who claims to be ultra detail-oriented..."

Read again, Clammity Jane. I never claimed that. I said the rule book was clear on one particular point (which, by the way, it still is).


Can I have my style back now, thanks.

I await your next logic-free comment. I have nothing to do until this code build is completed.

Entertain me.

Blogger Cortez said...
"Then why link to the rules at all, if you admit the refs don't call it that way?"

Once again Gilligan we were discussing whether it was a actual bonified rule or not.

Good ref do indeed call it that way. Bad refs, such as yourself, do something different.

"The misunderstood rule refers to incidental contact, including the hand is part of the ball statement."

Look again Speedy.

The incidental contact paragraph is referring to MULTIPLE SCENARIOS, of which includes contact during 'normal' offensive and defensive play AND contact with the hand while the ball is in contact with it, 'yer maroon.

Also, you neglect to describe a "normal" defensive movement."

Doesn't matter, as I've spelled out twice now, Hand contact and the section you are refering to are two different things, 'yer dope.

"Coming from the side."

Unlike Kobe(!), I tend not to take jumpshots with defenders hovering by my side so I think I'll fare just fine, boss. Besides that, scrappy, if the defender is on your side you should go to the basket anyway, THEY ARE OUT OF POSITION.

I have never been a high volume scorer and even I know that!

"Based upon your responses here, I do not believe this statement."

Funny thing, based on your responses here, I (nor should anyone else) have no reason to hold your opinions in high regard.

Instead of yip-yapping with me, Homer, how about you reread that section again that clearly states ANY contact with the hand while the ball is in contact with the hand is NOT a foul.

P.S. The periods in paragraphs have some significant meaning. They're not for decoration.