Thanks to Basketbawful reader Anf for today's pic.

Scalpers night off in Atlanta: From Basketbawful reader Vinny Gorgeous: "Hopefully you didn't actually watch Heat-Hawks, but the AP recap was golden. Among the highlights: Mario West, for the first time ever, saw his name leading off a game recap...unfortunately, it was immediately followed by 'blew a dunk' A little more snark: 'Speedy Claxton, a $25 million free-agent bust, actually played for the first time in more than two years. ... Claxton played 7 minutes, missing his only two shots, doling out one assist, and put up an airball on a free throw attempt, drawing groans from fans who still wonder why the Hawks gave him so much money. But he swished the second for his first point of the season, which averages out to $5.7 million per point.' Congratulations, Mr. AP NBA Recap guy; this Bud's for you." Speaking of which...

Speedy Claxton, quote machine: More from the AP recap: "Claxton was the main attraction on this night. He signed a four-year deal in 2006 to be the Hawks' starting point guard, but injuries and poor play made him persona non grata in Atlanta. He had not played since March 3, 2007, when he turned in 15 scoreless minutes against the New York Knicks. 'I was so nervous,' Claxton said. 'After I airballed the first one, I knew I had to make that second one.'"

The Philadelphia 76ers: The Sixers haven't won a game since April 4th, when they qualified for the NBA playoffs. Since then, they've suffered six straight defeats, including losses to the Nets (34-37), Bobcats (35-46) and Raptors (32-49). And last night, they lost to the " Boston Celtics," who were playing sans Kevin Garnett (mysterious never-ending knee injury) and Ray Allen (suspended for delivering that sac shot to Anderson Varejao). Despite logging only 30 minutes and sitting out most of the fourth quarter, Paul Pierce still lit up Philly's defense for 31 points (12-for-16). Truth also drilled seven of his nine three-point attempts. The Celtics leaned heavily on their reserves -- Glen Davis (34 minutes), Eddie House (24 minutes), Stephon Marbury (22 minutes) -- but still shot 52 percent and won the rebounding battle (41-38). Mind you, Boston had nothing to play for...while Philadelphia had plenty on the line.

The loss will almost certainly cost the Sixers the sixth spot in the Eastern Conference Playoffs (unless the Bulls lose at home to the Craptors AND they manage to beat the Crabs in Cleveland), which will force them to face the actual Boston Celtics in the first round. So, you know, uh oh.

Andre Iguodala: An anonymous commenter noted: "Iggy (ego-dala) committed a horribly shameless and blatantly fake flop after missing an ugly looking runner that would've given the Sixers the lead at the end of the game." He sure did. He found the nearest Celtic and just fell over him. Are coaches now teaching "shoot and fall down"?

Samuel Dalembert: Yet another game without an assist for Sammy Selfish. He now has 1 assist in his last 28 games (versus 166 field goal attempts and 40 turnovers).

Joey Crawford: Mr. "DO NOT LAUGH AT ME" Crawford was up to his old tricks last night. Apparently, he has it in for the Celtics. Maybe he hates the color green, or maybe the village he grew up in was destroyed by a hoard of rampaging leprechauns. Who knows? But last night he levied not one, not two, not three, not even four, but five technical fouls against Boston. Joey T'd up Mikki Moore and Doc Rivers in the second quarter, Rajon Rondo and Kendrick Perkins in the third, and then assistant coach Armond Hill in the fourth. The five techs were, indeed, a season-high for the Celtics. Rumor has it he almost called additional technicals on a Gatorade bottle and a wadded up towel at the end of the Boston bench. Dude was so quick with the whistle I started thinking that the government should give him a whistle-activated laser weapon and then force him to fight pirates.

The Utah Jazz: Yet another case of a former NBA Finalist with nothing to play for versus a lower seed with mucho to play for...and guess what happened? Kobe Bryant played only 26 minutes but L.A. still shot nearly 56 percent (and over 61 percent from downtown) to beat the Jazz 125-112. The Lakers are now 16-3 all-time against Utah at Staples Center, where they've beaten the Jazz six times in a row. Did I mention these teams are facing each other in the first round now? Yikes. Said Jerry Sloan: "We didn't give them much of a battle and knowing that we're going to have to play them again, it looks pretty bleak. Hate to say that, but it's one of those things."

Brad Miller, unintentionally dirty quote machine: Miller said: "All I want to do is grab somebody and bang nowadays...Kirk always has been known to get up into somebody's backside." He's actually talking about the physical nature of playoff basketball. As far as you know.

Update! Vinny Del Negro, unintentionally dirty quote machine: AK Dave noticed this Vinny quote from the same article Brad's was in: "It's going to be physical. You have to get used to that. ... You have to go in there and get into bodies." As AK said: "These guys make it sound like playoff basketball is a 10-man angry orgy or something. They should really tone it down, you know. Kids read this stuff!"

Joe Tobjy, sore/evil loser: Here's the description for this YouTube video: "Joe Tobjy was picked to be in the halftime contest of basketball musical chairs. Realizing he was going to lose, he throws his basketball at the kid whos going to win, takes him out and turns what could have been one of the most memorable event in this kid's college life to one of the worst...he also makes him bleed from the fall."

More advanced statistical fail: Chris in Cleveland writes: "I thought you'd enjoy this. Not sure what Don Nelson did to make this happen but evidently it worked." He then provided a recent screen capture of John Hollinger's playoff odds:

More Hollinger Fail

So, the Lakers and Jazz are out while the Suns and Warriors are in? I love math!

Lacktion report: Chris reports shocking anti-lacktion development...

Heat-Hawks: Not lacktion, but something else: Mario West scoring a WARIO! From the original "Mario" article -- that term was given for Mr. West actually scoring significant playing time, and he had the most playing time of anyone on court, with a 39:14 stint. Wow. (And that three quarters' worth of non-lacktivity still managed to net him only three points!)

Celtics-Sixers: Despite an assist in 10:09, Theo Ratliff fouled and bricked once each for a 1:0 Madsen-level Voskuhl.
NASA: As you may or may not know, NASA held an online contest to name a room at the international space station. Thanks to countless writein votes, the name "Colbert" -- as in Stephen Colbert -- beat out NASA's four suggested options (Serenity, Legacy, Earthrise and Venture). But instead of honoring the contest they initiated, NASA wimped out and bypassed "Colbert" for the eighth most popular response submitted by respondents: Tranquility (which is an allusion to the Sea of Tranquility, where Apollo 11 landed on the moon). Lame. NASA did throw Colbert Nation a bone, though, naming a treadmill after their hero. The new COLBERT treadmill stands for "Combined Operational Load Bearing External Resistance Treadmill." The resolution is kind of cool, but still pretty balless.

Kobe Bryant: Mamba texted Steve Nash that he had named his master bathroom "NASH"...for "Nicely Accoutered Shit House."

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Anonymous Marc said...
Budweiser: Made with genetically engineered rice.

Is that really something you want to advertise?

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Worst of the day - basketbawful: Has a clever idea of using NASA's amusing acronym as part of his daily Kobe joke, tries for 20 minutes to think of a combination of words whose first letters spell "Morrison," fails, and at the last second subs in Steve Nash since he has such a short last name, even though he doesn't have anything to do with the joke. If only Radmanovich hadn't been traded...

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Anonymous -- Come up with a better acronym for Morrison or Walton and I'll use it.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
What the hell, they didn't even use Serenity? (That's the one I voted for)

Bawful, Bill Simmons gave your man Troy Murphy some love, but gets a WotN mention for the joke made in 399. Zach Randolph:

Note: I might have used that joke during the Isiah Error. I honestly can't remember.Yes, you did. It was the same joke with D'Antoni and Colangelo with the Suns and Isiah and the Knicks, regarding Marbury.

Also, thanks for the screencap of Hollinger. Just keep twisting the knife, people.

Phoenix sad face.

Blogger DiscoHands said...
Worst of the day: for this embarrassing article:

Blogger Wild Yams said...
First off, that Brad Miller quote is hands down the dirtiest unintentionally dirty quote ever. I feel like I need a cold shower just reading it.

The Sixers are pathetic. If they can't beat Boston at home in a game they had to win (and in which Boston did not), and where Boston was missing KG and Jesus, how do they expect to avoid a sweep in the first round? Philly really seems to be mastering the art of backing into the playoffs, considering they have definitely topped the way they limped in last year.

I have to wonder what the Lakers coming out and pummeling the Jazz will do to Utah's psyche. The Lakers could have rested everyone and mailed it in with the hopes that a Utah victory and some help today could give the Lakers a different first round opponent; but instead LA basically said "No, we really would rather play you guys." And then they showed why that is. LA was up 21 with a couple minutes to go in the 4th, and that was despite some road cookin' to the tune of 47 FTAs for the Jazz to only 24 for the Lakers, and that was also despite Kobe playing only 26 minutes due to foul trouble. I don't think LA's gonna beat the Jazz as badly as Boston's gonna beat Philly in this first round, but it'll be close.

Congrats to Mario West for notching almost 40 minutes of playing time last night. It should be noted that since Mario finished with 239 minutes of playing time for the season, he recorded 16% of his season's total minutes in last night's game alone. To put that in perspective, for Dwyane Wade to accomplish the same feat he would have to play almost 500 minutes in one game, which of course is tough to do without a couple extra overtime periods. Mario also played more minutes last night than he had in any month all season except for March. Also, before you make fun of Mario for only scoring 3 points in all those minutes, keep in mind it was his fourth highest scoring game of the year.

Anonymous StottsEra said...
I attended the hawks/heat game last night. I "won" tickets actually. Cause there was no way I would ever pay for an NBDL game. The highlight of the game was seeing D-Wade ham it up on the kiss cam.

Anonymous dunkside said...
Not only did that little bitch travel when he left his chair, but he didn't even have the strength to throw a damn ball to midcourt - the ball bounces and the other guy trips on it.

Would have been cool if the other guy just got up and punched the little bitch in the face.

Blogger shayan said...
That Brad Miller dirty quote is one of the best of all time, just hilarious.

Blogger Unknown said...
couple of guys debating who you'd start a franchise with: wade or howard. bawful...? you decide

Anonymous AK Dave said...
Aaaah another day, another round of laughs at BB. OK, here's a quote from that same Brad Miller article that shouldn't go unnoticed:

"It's going to be physical," coach Vinny Del Negro said. "You have to get used to that. You're not going to get calls. You have to go in there and get into bodies."

VDN: closet necrophiliac. These guys make it sound like Playoff basketball is a 10-man angry orgy or something. They should really tone it down, you know. Kids read this stuff!

LAL really handed Utah their asses yesterday; and it was tied with a few minutes to go in the 3rd. Did anyone else hear the announcer refer to the "quick hands of Luke Walton"? lol. I still say they can win 2 games before going home. They just HAVE to try a little harder than they did last night. More Millsap is what they need.

Dunkside: Seriously. Somebody should have dealt with that guy. Maybe he is really Kobe Bryant's illegitimate albino bastard son? Hmmmmm....

Blogger chris said...
StottsEra: Since you were there, tell lacktive was THE Mario West in his 39 minute unglorious Wario?

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Marc -- Only if the rice is evil. What if it's fun, cool, super-crime fighting rice? Eh?

AnacondaHL -- Yeah, I was afraid that would hurt you. But, really, it was protect you or jab Hollinger. What was I supposed to do? Don't worry. I'll wrap my loving arms around you and make it better.

DiscoHands -- What's next? "Playoff Games Have Playoff Implications?"

Wild Yams -- That had to be Philly's most disheartening loss of the season. They might as well just cover themselves in hamburger and jump into a lion pit at the zoo...that's what their first-round series is going to be like.

Regarding the Jazz, I think the season's worth of discontinuity is killing them. Boozer's not himself, guys are confused about their roles, or are playing like it. They're like a bunch of strangers on defense. Blind ones. With mild retardation.

StottsEra -- Wow. That's kind of like winning tickets to a Foreigner concert at the state fair where the highlight is finding out George Clooney was in the front row quoting lines from "Oh Brother Where Art Thou."

dunkside -- I was kinda hoping for a throwdown. Reminds me of a trip I made to Myrtle Beach last summer. There was this bratty little kid menacing other kids with this silly string can. He was a real shit, and he finally picked on a kid a little too big for him. The brat goaded him and goaded him and finally, when the bigger kid was walking away after refusing to take the bate, he beaned the big kid in the head with the silly string can. The big kid then proceeded to kick the crap out of him. Yes, I just stayed on my chair and watched. With more than a little glee.

Dan -- Eh, given the way the game has transformed the last few years, I'd have to go with Wade. The officiating leans more toward perimeter players than big men, plus, Wade has a vaster skill set. I love Dwight, but he's too limited, and I can't see him getting much better unless he becomes seriously devoted to working on his post game. Meanwhile, Wade made a jump this year and seems intent on trying to improve MORE over the summer.

AK Dave -- Heh, I added that Vinny quote to the post.

chris -- Fear the answer to that question...

Anonymous StottsEra said...
the whole hawks/heat game last night was pretty much a tribute to lacktation. I actually streamed Mario in my fantasy league, knowing he was gonna get a ton of minutes. The worst isnt the points, but the steals, i mean THE Mario West has gotta average something like 2 steals/minute this year and he got ZERO in 39 min of lacktation last night

Anonymous Czernobog said...
I like to think that if that picture at the top of the page was a video we'd be able to see Farmar's ears beating.

Blogger Unknown said...
That Brad Miller quote is classic. For Brad, I dedicate this.

Anonymous Dan B. said...
So, Shaq got pwn3d by a rookie. I anxiously await his revenge. Could this escalate into something as ridiculous as the prank wars from collegehumor? We can only hope.

Anonymous StottsEra said...
Mario West named 11th man of the year!!

ELEVENTH MAN AWARD: Mario West, Atlanta Hawks

There is a certain status that goes along with being a team's 12th man. After all, M.L. Carr won rings and got famous doing that in Boston, and Jack Haley dominated the balloting for years during his run as Dennis Rodman's chaperone. Besides, those guys rarely break a sweat. The 11th man, however, actually plays -- just not very much. No one in the league this season has appeared in as many games (51) for as few minutes (199) as West, an undrafted free agent from George Tech in 2007 who saw more action last season.

Anonymous kazam92 said...
Mark Blount for MVP. 6 pts on 2 threes plus he's now sporting a menacing goatee or as one guy put it, not facial hair just mold from not getting off the bench for so long

Blogger Nick Flynt said...
I had no computer last night at the time, but I went on a personal Joey Crawford rant. I brought up the Timmy thing, which you linked, but that guy should be out of the league.

Besides the fact that he's an angry little midget/troll, he puts himself above the game.

Did anyone see the play he called in which (I believe) Perkins never left his feet, had two 76ers in front of him, and yet Crawford says that he (Perk) goaltended the basket.

Crawford couldn't even see the basket. He could, however, see that Perk never left his feet.

Does he even watch the game, or does he just wait for someone to complain and then go after their team the rest of the game?

Anonymous Anonymous said...
ESPN redid their original article, I saved the original. There are some classic remarks about Charlotte vying for a spot in the Western Conference and the number 4 and 5 seeds in the East playing each other in the 1st round. Some other good stuff too.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
@buck nasty
...yeah im pretty sure they showed a replay of that "goaltend" and it was actually samuel dalambert(sp?) who goaltended (his own basket)...if im thinking of the same play

Anonymous AK Dave said...
Buck Nasty-

He is an angry little man with a napoleon syndrome. He's just mad because his penis isn't the hammer.

Oh and AnacondaHL- I was holding my breath waiting for you to come out with the NBA equivalent of SC units, but you let me down... just a little bit though. Here's a start:

Carrier: Steve Nash (his fighters do the damage)

Siege Tank: Ray Allen (unmatched range, forces you to leave your base defenses and close out or be bombed to death, can fire on the run or set up in siege mode and blast from distance)

Hydralisk: Kobe Bryant (slimy, slithery, ueber-versatile, efficient, and feared)

Blogger chris said...
StottsEra: Thanks for that link. Amazing.

Mario was averaging appearances of...4 minutes a game, before his sudden explosion of 39 minutes last night. But that might be skewed with a likely pattern of several Marios surrounded by a random 6 or 7 minute appearance of mediocrity...

Blogger Drake said...

"Note: I might have used that joke during the Isiah Error. I honestly can't remember.Yes, you did. It was the same joke with D'Antoni and Colangelo with the Suns and Isiah and the Knicks, regarding Marbury."Actually, the joke was about Kurt Thomas and Quentin Richardson. It went something like this:

D'Antoni: God, Q stunk in the playoffs.
Colangelo: I know. He was absolutely awful.
D'Antoni: What if we called, say, Isiah and talked him into trading us Kurt Thomas for Q?

Both laugh maniacally, and then stop.

Colangelo: Call his office! I'll try to call his home.

Anonymous Czernobog said...
"The loss will almost certainly cost the Sixers the sixth spot in the Eastern Conference Playoffs (unless the Bulls lose at home to the Craptors AND they manage to beat the Crabs in Cleveland), which will force them to face the actual Boston Celtics in the first round. So, you know, uh oh."


Oh man. Did you just pull a Devin Harris, B'awful.

Blogger lordhenry said...
So you guys like D2 and Starcraft huh? Used to play D2 religiously until I realized it was taking over my life. My roommate is still pathetically addicted, with bots running on two out of the three computers in our apartment. Seeing how addicted to game crack he became is why I stopped, it's kind've sad.

Bawful, are you stat-cursing L.A.? All this talk of first round teams being the sacrificial laker lambs bothers me. I know technically, we should win, but given the last finals runner-up to be the #1 western seed was Dallas, and look what happened to them. Worried it's a possiblity this year, especially with portland owning us bobcats style.

Anonymous DKH said...
Well, the 76ers managed to pick up a win, but I think it can be filed under "wins that aren't as good as others":

The Cavs rested LeBron James, Mo Williams, Ben Wallace (maybe more "injured" as much as "resting"), Zydrunas Ilgauskas, and Joe Smith.

It took some home court disadvantage to nudge the 76ers over the top: the free throw disparity was 35-12, accounting for late game fouling to stop the clock.


Fun stat:

Mario West ranks fifth on the Hawks in points per shot with 1.29. He is narrowly beaten for fourth by Al Horford, who has 1.30. Seems like he should have a usage rate higher than 10.1. Horford has a rate around 15, and Joe Johnson, who ranks lower in points per shot, has 25.2.

Also, West has made his only 3-point shot attempt of the season. Clearly, he needs the ball more.

Anonymous DKH said...
Jason Kidd turned in a Jason Kidd triple double! I love how the ESPN lead is "Kidd's triple-double helps Mavs ground Rockets." I mean, sure, 11/10/12 is valuable, but in a brief glance at the box score, my eye is more drawn to Nowitzki's 30/15/2. (Remember that a couple weeks ago Kidd got an assist when he inbounded it to end the half and Terry jacked up a 70-foot 3-pointer. Boom, assist for Kidd. So assists at the American Airlines Center maybe aren't as valuable as elsewhere.)

Shouldn't the Bulls have been trying a little harder to win at home? At any rate, it was stat-padding night for the Craptors: Marion with 34 points and 11 boards, Bosh with 21 points and 19 boards (maybe it's easy to pick up offensive boards when you put up 23 shots and only make 8). The two-headed point guard of Calderon/Ukic finished with 22 points, and 18 assists to only 4 TOs. Now everyone can be optimistic for the Raptors over the summer.

Anonymous swarley said...
hahahahahah, okc had more assists than the clippers had made field goals.

Anonymous ak dave said...
Well with the Bulls drawing the Celtics in the first round, it's going to be tough, but I wouldn't count them out entirely. KG's health is a question mark, Kirk Hinrich (don't laugh) has always had success guarding Ray Allen, and Paul Pierce is going to have Tyrus Thomas on him, so look for the Celts to really lean on PP for scoring.

Too bad for Chicago- Orlando would have been a better draw, but I think it will be a fun series to watch nonetheless.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
Bawful - Your reach around is always appreciated.

AK Dave - I thought about it, but decided against it. Jokes were either too far-stretched or too depressing. Nash is small quick and with the assists, clearly makes him an upgraded Vulture (have you seen the sick stuff SlayerS_'Boxer' does with them?)
(fake edit: I changed my mind. Nash is the Science Vessel clearly. The vision, the assists, no defence, and you can just Irradiate yourself if you have 2 and kill all their Drones for massive offensive damage).
Ray Allen (modern) is definitely a Guardian. If you can imagine the Guardian's knees.
And Kobe doesn't even deserve to be in this conversation (especially since I'm a renown Hydralisk user).
Fake edit: I take that back. Kobe's a Light Templar/Archon. Devastating range to destroy entire teams, could probably solo 81 Zerglings, and can shift into supreme mode, but EMP him for the lulz.

Drake - Oh yeaaah. I forgot about Q. Rather, tried to purge the memory and pain from my mind.

Bawful - Now you suffer. SUCK IT SOOOOOO HARD! Have fun writing about facing the "actual Boston Celtics" in the first round!

Also, I'm compiling some amazing 2008-09 Mario West season stats, it should be finished by tomorrow.

Anonymous Lucas said...
Basketbawful, I know the following is not basketball, but it would definitely make your WotN picture

Anonymous Ruben said...
I can't help but think you made that stat curse on purpose. I remember you saying you would rather watch the Bulls get blown out by a team that you like watching...
Aren't you now slightly happy that Cleveland didn't break Boston's home court record?
Maybe you got greedy and started entertaining hopes that the Bulls could actually advance to the 2nd round.
You have so much power, but I fear that you might be abusing it.
Maybe it was actually Noah who statcursed it, with his comments about not looking forward to Guarding Dwight.
So many possibilities...

Anonymous AK Dave said...

Kobe = Hydralisk

Search your feelings, you KNOW it to be true!