The Knicks: All things considered, the Knicks probably should've just called it a day after this play.

 

It didn't get much better for the Knicks, who chose an inopportune time to forget the Wizards are allowed to shoot threes. I can see why there would be confusion. The Wizards are normally good for only 6 threes a night at 34%, but against the Knicks they made the 2nd most threes they've made all season, converting 11 of their 20 attempts.

The Suns: After their 9 point loss to the Hornets, the Phoenix Suns are now only half a game away from being the worst team in the West. It's a spot currently occupied by New Orleans, who stopped a four game skid to stay within half a win of Phoenix and Sacramento. Eric Gordon was limited to 9 points on 3 of 14 shooting, but the Suns weren't about to let a little thing like that stop them from losing.

The Bucks: Larry Sanders was out with a bad back after getting too close to the Manimal, therefore Samuel Dalembert was given the start and a chance to become more attractive trade bait. He acquitted himself admirably with a double-double, 4 steals, and 4 blocks, but it wasn't enough to counter the rest of the team shooting 33%.

The Magic, and more generally health: The Clippers ended their 3 game losing streak in Orlando. Eric Bledsoe scored a career-high 27 points, which shouldn't come as a surprise, considering his best option was to shoot nearly every time down the floor. All three of the team's best scorers were on the bench. While it's true that the team's 4th leading scorer, Matt Barnes, had recovered from his case of pushing-Greg Stiemsma-in the throat-suspension, Bledsoe was wise not to pass to him too much. On a per minutes basis Bledsoe is the superior scoring machine, and on this particular night Barnes was struggling with his shot, making only 2 of 11 attempts.

The Clippers bench is starting to resemble the Last Supper

Still, that didn't matter much, because they were playing the Orlando Magic, quite possibly the most injury ravaged club east of the Mississippi. On this night, the Magic were unable to overcome the absence of J.J. Redick, Arron Afflalo, and Big Baby; nor were they able to capitalize from the absence of Hedo Turkgolu or Al Harrington.

Sorry Hedo, we'll always have Cleveland.  

Speaking of Cleveland, I've never officially stated what a huge bummer it is that Varejão is out for the season. While watching him occasionally gives me motion sickness, nobody can deny the big Brazilian's heart or motor. Varejão was busy proving himself as a top player when fate dealt him a difficult hand, combining a freak injury that required surgery with the discovery of a blood clot in his lung. 

The NBA in now in the unenviable position of having to finish the season without two players who were both leading the league in major statistical categories. I haven't done the research yet, but I'm gonna go out on a limb and say this hasn't happened too often. This must be why David Stern is reportedly planning to start supplying his All-Stars with HGH.

The Bobcats: The loss of Varejão may have further doomed Cleveland's playoff chances, but it didn't effect the ability of the Cavaliers to thoroughly spay and neuter the Cats from Carolina. The Cats were struggling with injury issues of their own, with MKG having recently lost one of his 9 lives while demonstrating that cats don't always land on their feet. Still, it takes more than one horrific looking injury to lose to the Cavs by 27 points.

Charlotte's leading scorer, Kemba Walker, had more of his attempts blocked than converted; while Ben Gordon, the teams leading per-minute-scorer, played only 15 minutes. Even considering this, the Cats were far worse on the defensive end, where they allowed Cleveland to score 122 points on 57% shooting. Those 122 points are the most the Cavs have scored all year, and the 27 point victory is their largest since May 7th, 2010. You might remember that they had this guy named LeBron James back then.

Mirza Teletovic: Mirza shot three airballs in under a minute last night, which has resulted in the most media coverage he's had since entering the NBA.


The amazing thing is that the Nets gained 3 points while he was on the floor. Which leads to the next WotN.

The Pistons: The Pistons played a decent game against a better team and lost by 3 points. So why are they here? It's because they failed to make up any ground while Mirza was shooting 3 straight airballs. If a team can't capitalize on that, they should just head to the locker room.

The Warriors: The West's resident dark horse just got a whole lot darker, or possibly transformed into a Colorado mustang. Maybe I'm making too much of this 21 point victory for the Thunder. After all, this is only the 6th time this season that David Lee has had more attempts than points and only the 4th time Stephen Curry has missed 15 shots. It's also the first time those two events coincided. Last time these teams met, Curry and Lee combined for 53 points and the Warriors won by 5. This time around, the stars struggled for the Warriors, while the Durant, Westbrook, and Martin trio each bagged at least 20 points.

Lacktion:
Nets-Pistons: Mirza Teletovic made a name for himself in the NBA by airballin' all 3 of his attempts for a +3 suck differential in 4 minutes and 17 seconds. 
Thunder-Warriors: Eric Maynor did as little as possible in 4 minutes and 18 seconds, while his opponent Jeremy Tyler took the same amount of time to do a little bit of everything from a negative stats perspective, resulting in a +5 suck differential. 
Jazz-Bucks: Kevin Murphy and his Jazz teammate Jeremy Evans both had trillions, while Murphy missed a shot to expand his into a +1 suck differential. 
* HGH Users: I made a mistake before. David Stern isn't giving HGH out, he's saying the league should start testing for it next year. The title of the article in the Washington Post is Commissioner David Stern says 'we're well on the way' to HGH testing in the NBA. I must've somehow missed that testing part. I thought this was the beginning of a whole new era for the league, but I guess for now we'll just have to deal with human frailty. 

1 Comments:
Blogger Wormboy said...
Dear Mr. Kidd,

Your jock strap, scorch marks and all, will be framed and kept in John Walls trophy case.

Sincerely yours,
The Gods of Basketball

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