bitch fight

The Atlanta Hawks: It's a pretty sad commentary when the highlight of a team's second round playoff series is losing by only 10 points in the final match of a four-game sweep. It's like managing to hang on to part of your lower intestines while being eaten alive by wild dogs. In the face of their own postseason doom, the Dirty Birds shot 31 percent from the field (23-for-73) and 15 percent from downtown (2-for-13) while finishing with only 74 points. Included in those dreadful shooting stats were nine blown layups and 41 missed jumpers. And did I mention that Wally Szczerbiak got out and dunked on them. Yep. It happened. On the bright side, they did hit 26 of their 30 free throw attempts. But back to the less-than-bright side, they failed to capitalize on Cleveland's Shaqnopsis (the Crabs were 14-for-26 from the line) and an off shooting night for LeBron James (9-for-22, including 4-for-12 on jumpers and 2-for-7 on layups).

So the Hawks finish the 2009 playoffs with a 4-7 record. And they lost those seven games by the following margins: 15, 29, 28, 27, 20, 15 and 10. That's an average margin of defeat of nearly 21 points per loss. Their postseason point differential was -7.1, fifth-worst among playoff teams, ahead of only Philly (-7.7), Utah (-9.2), Detroit (-15.5) and New Orleans (-24.2). And you'll notice none of those other teams made it out of the first round.

Of course, Hawks coach Mike Woodson was quick with the excuses, which is what you do when you've got a job to hold onto. "It's hard to judge this team because we really weren't healthy in this series. We have to get better personnel-wise, but I couldn't be more proud of the guys than I am. We made some major strides this season."

Oh, I dunno, Mike. I personally think it's very easy to judge your team...

the Hawks suck

Al Horford: According to league statisticians, Big Al, sprained ankle and all, spent 19 minutes and one second on the court last night, but you hardly would have known it by watching the game. He finished with zero points and had as many fouls (3) and missed field goals (0-for-3) as rebounds. And two of those misses were air balls, by the way. By comparison, he made Zaza Pachulia (9 points, 6 boards) look like Wilt Chamberlain. Okay, that's overstating things a bit. Manut Bol, maybe? Oh, I forgot to mention that Horford was outrebounded 4-3 by this guy...

Mike Bibby: You know, I used to love this guy back when he was playing in Sacamento alongside Chris Webber and Vlade Divac. Now? I hate him. I mean, I loath him like he was a Laker. So, yeah, I get a little wood when the Bibster blows chunks. And last night, the chunks were extra chunky. Think "I shouldn't have downed that burrito as big as my head after doing 12 tequila shots." The line: 30 minutes, 3 points (1-for-6), 1 assist, 1 turnover and 3 fouls. Not bad for a starting point guard...if your starting point guard is Eric Snow.

Mario West: How fitting that in his final game of the season -- and, who knows, maybe the final game of his career -- Mario ended up with a 35-second Mario during which he racked up a plus-minus score of zero. Dude is like Bruce Willis in "The Sixth Sense"...he's there, but he's not.

Carmelo Anthony: Everything was going so well for the Nuggets. Up 3-0 in the series, ahead by 14 points (37-23) early in the second quarter of Game 4, the Mavs looked ready to call it a season...and then 'Melo did what my buddy Mister P calls "shooting a bear in the ass with a BB gun." Anthony got tangled up with Antoine Wright under the basket, and the officials called a loose ball foul on Wright. But that wasn't enough for 'Melo, who shoved the ball into Wright and threw an open-hand slap that kinda sorta glanced off of Antoine's shoulder.

Now see, that's the kind of thing that can light a fire under your opponent, especially when you pull that crap at their place. And that's exactly what happened. From that point forward, things got more than a little chippy: The next 34 minutes featured seven technical fouls and a couple flagrants. Things got so ugly that Carmelo's woman, LaLa Vazquez, had to be removed from the stands for her own safety. And, of course, extra security had to be positioned around Kenyon Martin's mom, Lydia Martin, due to her out-of-nowhere feud with Mark Cuban. (Of the Dallas crowd, Nuggets coach George Karl said: "I would probably use an uglier word than hostile, but I'm not going to do that right now.")

Anyway, when all was said and done, the Mavericks outscored the Nuggets by 16 the rest of the way to win 119-117 and live to die another day. And despite 'Melo's career playoff-high 41 points (15-for-29), you can't help but wonder how things might have gone if the dude had just been able to control himself.

Kenyon Martin: After Mavs owner and billionaire douchebag Mark Cuban accosted Martin's mom after Game 3 -- he told Kenyon's mom that her son was a thug and might also have called him a punk -- Martin said: "I don't feel I need to call his name in the media and all that, but it's a little personal. And I'm going to take care of it. ... [You] don't say nothing to my kids or my family. If you got something to say, say it to me. But I'm going to take care of it. I'm not going to do the whole media thing, back and forth. That's his thing. I'm more of a face-to-face type of dude."

So what did Kenyon "do" about it? Well, he fouled out in 33 minutes of lacktion, finishing with more fouls (6) than points (2), rebounds (2) and assists (1). That'll teach you, Mark Cuban! But wait, there's more. Martin got all tough with some Dallas fans too. According to Art Garcia of the Playoff Blog (via Ball Don't Lie), Martin when all Ron Artest-lite on the crowd surrounding his mom during a second-quarter video review: "'You [expletive] better cut the [expletive],' he shouted, as team personnel tried to pull him back to the huddle. 'You're going to get [expletive] up.' Martin then said to his mother: 'Somebody do something to you, you better tell me. I'm going to [expletive] somebody up.'" Fortunately for the Nuggets, the NBA and the fans sitting around Kenyon's mom, Martin did not have to [word Kevin Garnett says on the Boston bench] anybody up.

Dirk Nowitzki, "please don't make me go home" machine: Connor Nolte of pointed out: "After Game 4, Dirk said: 'We just didn't want to go home.' I'm pretty sure no one is going to argue with Dirk not wanting to go home to that insane lady. Dallas is the new favorite to win. Dirk definitely doesn't want to go home." I don't get it. Why wouldn't you want to go home when your criminal ex-fiance -- who might be preggers with your baby -- looks like this?

Dirks ladybeast

Officiating: If you read yesterday's comments section, then you know that Wild Yams is mad as hell about the state of officiating in the NBA, and he's not going to take it anymore! (I'm kidding. He's totally going to take it. But totally begrudgingly.) And his latest beef is with the way the calls were going down in the Nuggets-Mavs game: "The league has got to stop all these flagrant foul calls! Did anyone see the two flagrant fouls called near the end of the first half last night when JR Smith and Linas Kleiza drove to the basket? Neither one of those were flagrant at all. I don't even think they were even very hard fouls. What the hell are the refs doing calling everything flagrant these days? I know a lot of people are clamoring for the NBA to be consistent in its rulings, but honestly I don't care about that anymore. I'd be totally fine if they essentially admitted they'd been wrong recently and starting now you saw players able to foul the way they could during the regular season without worrying that they'll get called for flagrants for every little bit of contact. Also, did we really need for the game to stop last night for 5 minutes so the refs could review the video just because Melo shoved Wright to get him off of him? Whether he made contact with his head on that shove or not shouldn't be relevant: an open-handed shove is not a punch. The refs seem like they don't know how to call things anymore, and honestly I can't blame them. It seems nowadays like the league offices are changing the in-game calls (or worse, officially saying "they blew that call") after virtually every game. Can we just get back to playing basketball already?"

Lacktion report: Chris once again proves that lacktion is like a Hostess Twinkie: Whether or not you like its spongy, cream-filled goodness, it's always there...and always fresh.

Cavs-Hawks: The Dirty Birds met the fryer tonight, but not without putting up a fight through a majority of the game. Al Horford did his part by negating three boards and a steal in 19:01 with a trio of bricks and fouls and a turnover, earning a 4:3 Voskuhl. Maurice Evans bricked and fouled twice for a suck differential of +4 in 12:18. But in a clear example of a player showing the Association he is the world's best at a particular role, THE Mario West spent 35 seconds avoiding Donkey Kong's barrels one last time, to achieve his last Mario of the 2008-09 season (which somehow included a steal!).

Nuggets-Mavs: Even before the end of the game, Erick Dampier proved his non-worth to Mark Cuban with a painfully lengthy 22:54 stint -- where four boards, an assist, and a block were nowhere near enough to overcome a brick, five giveaways, and an Oden-style foulout! Yep, that's an 11:4 Voskuhl, THE worst ratio of the playoffs, and one of the most ghastly ratios in memory.

Luckily, Dirk Nowitzki more than made up for that mediocrity, allowing James Singleton to get back out there on the last play and be a human victory cigar! With the Mavs still alive, James's 1.4 trillion will no doubt help cover some of Mr. Cuban's legal bills.

And while George Karl's team did not end the series there, it wasn't for an absence of lacking it up, as Renaldo Balkman may have scored a late-game Super Mario Galaxy, according to ESPN (but not verified by any other source).
Insane fans: As reported yesterday, Glen "Big Baby" Davis got so freakin' excited over his game-winning jumper at the end of Game 4, he ended up shoving some fat kid who was standing courtside as he shambled his way back to the Boston bench. In a sane world, we all would have enjoyed a nice, hearty chuckle over the sweaty, flapping collision of porky flesh...that would have been that. But we don't live in a sane world. We live on a planet in which our millionaire basketball players are knocking up criminal woman-beasts and a man can't sit down on the toilet without having his penis bitten by a snake. So of course the kid's dad is getting all pissy. According to the Orlando Sentinel:

Ernest Provetti was standing beside his 12-year-old son Nicholas, sitting courtside, when the boy caught the backhand of an excited Davis. Davis scored the game-winning basket in the Boston Celtics' 95-94 Game 4 win against the Orlando Magic at Amway Arena.

Earlier today, he said he sent an e-mail to the NBA league office complaining about Davis' shove -- who many thought to be an accident.

In the e-mail, Provetti said Davis conducted himself like a "raging animal" with no regard for fans' personal safety.

"The NBA makes it clear to not cross the sideline," he said in a telephone interview. "If I cross that line, the NBA will take away my tickets. It's a double standard."

He said neither Boston or the NBA has responded. And he won't be waiting around for that call.
Sorry, Ernest. The NBA has a strict policy of not negotiating with crazy people. But if you take your wacko act to a local Starbucks, you might be able to intimidate the barista (which is pretentious for "coffee server") into a free vente diet triple frapachoco mocha whatever. Oh, and Ernest, here's some advice. Go to YouTube and to a search for "raging animal" sometime. You'll probably find several videos like this one, that will show you what a rampaging animal attack really looks like. And if that doesn't convince you, then here's a quick quiz that may help you to determine whether you have been the victim of a raging animal attack: Is there a pulpy blob of oozing flesh where the fat kid you brought to the basketball game with you was just standing? If the answer is just might have been victimized by one or more rampaging animal-monsters. Otherwise, you're a crazy, complaining twat.

Zach Randolph: Pablo sent in the link to this awesome "Where Will Amazing Happen This Year?" spoof that features Z-Bo and the worst possession in NBA history. Do yourself a favor and watch this baby seven times.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blogger Nick Flynt said...
Mike Woodson should probably be out. I've seen a bunch of classic "my heart has been ripped from me" looks in his eyes. He has no way of instilling composure in his team, which is pretty important, as the Hawks showed us in these playoffs.

I was not surprised by the outcome, but extremely disappointed with their effort through the series, as the Hawks' fans have been since Pete Maravich came over and up to this very day.

Verification = pykmoge

Take from it what you will

Blogger Cortez said...
"I shouldn't have downed that burrito as big as my head after doing 12 tequila shots."

Ahhhh, yes.

LaBamba burritos.

Blogger Will said...
If Big Baby is a raging animal, can I tame him and take him home to be my pet?

Blogger Nick Flynt said...
In the Melo thing, you said 'fued' instead of 'feud.'

Anonymous stockton said...
Lala Vasquez looks so MUCH better than Dirk's girl. You're sure it's safe for Carmelo to make all those trips to Houston and Cleveland while Dirk has all that free time on his hands?

Blogger Wild Yams said...
I guess I'm the Howard Beale of the NBA blogosphere. Maybe David Stern will soon call me into his office to yell at me that I've meddled with the primal forces of nature and that I will atone. Seriously though, just let the guys play the game without all this nonsense. Not every little dustup needs to be reviewed by the officials on a monitor at the scorer's table, and not every guy who is fouled and ends up on his back was flagrantly fouled. Just let them play already.

With Dallas winning Game 4, it really is too bad the officials screwed up the end of Game 3, otherwise we actually could have not one but two really quality series going on in the Western Conference. Instead it's probably gonna be Denver in 5. At least Houston-LA and Boston-Orlando should continue to provide some intrigue.

What's the NBA and ESPN gonna do without LeBron for the next week and a half?

Anonymous Sun Devil said...
I agree with you on the general idea of Flagrants in the playoffs, Yams. But I gotta disagree with you on this situation. Carmelo did give Wright a little slap and should have punished for it. He shouldn't get away with that.

I think they were calling all the "fouls" because of the situation with the fans and jazz....

Also JR Smiff got smacked in the face, so it was, technically, a flagrant foul.

Anonymous Sun Devil said...
That is he shouldn't get away with it in the spirit of avoiding all physical altercations in the NBA.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Probably show a puff-piece documentary on Kobe Bryant.

Blogger Dr. Hank Pym said...
RE: Yams "Network" comments.

Does this mean Stern's going bring in Charles Oakley to kill you, live on this blog?

"This is the story of Wild Yams. The only man ever killed because of lousy officiating."

Anonymous La Dolce Vita said...
The "flagrant" called last night when Kleiza drove to the basket was absolutely ridiculous. He was barely even touched, he didn't flop after the incidental contact, and it was STILL called a flagrant. Is this really the path the NBA wants to go down? Body contact near the basket on a contested shot is a flagrant?? So frustrating to watch.

Blogger Wormboy said...
Ernest Provetti needs to get his fat-ass progeny to sit the hell down and get off the sideline. News flash, Ernie: if your flab child is standing within a foot of the court, there's a small but appreciable chance that a gigantic professional athlete with hurtle out of nowhere and bump into your poor wittle precious.

I have this image of Ernest thinking "I'm going to show my boy that his old man has some cojones." Yeah, making yourself a laughing stock will do that well, Ernest. Next time, keep the slack-jawed troglodyte away from courtside.

Anonymous AK Dave said...
Wild Yams:

I couldn't believe they called flagrants on the JR Smiff and Linas (I'm not from Charlie Brown) Kleiza. The officiating is becoming totally laughable. First they let Rondo go all "Fighter Hayabusa" on the Bulls, and now they're reviewing tape in-game to determine if a harmless shove (should be a tech, that's it) is a FLAGRANT?? Come on guys, really.

I'm glad Dallas got one at least; though I feel like Denver could have done better last night if Chris Anderson wasn't sick. Instead, they had to play Kleiza off the bench, and his defense wasn't exemplary.

In fact, Kleiza's stock is waaaaay low right now. Isn't this a contract year for him? He looks slightly overweight, a step slow, and his shot (which was butter last year) is just off. He's playing under 10min/game for the playoffs (not including last night when he HAD to come in since Anderson had the swine flu or whatever), and George Karl seems to prefer JR Smiff over him in every instance- for good reason, too. What the hell happened to this guy?

Also, I don't believe that the officials "screwed up the end of game 3" and cost the Mavs that game. Denver beat them- they put those points up themeselves. There are many blown calls throughout a game, but nobody looks at a blown call in the 1st quarter and says "the officials COST THEM THE GAME!!" it's just overblown because it happened in the waning seconds; but the bottom line is that Denver STILL had to hit a tough shot, Dallas STILL could have defended them, and even if a foul had been called, they would have had time remaining and it might have "only" gone to overtime.

Anyway, yeah, Denver in 5 now.

Blogger Dunpizzle said...
Ron Artest - worst player in NBA history.

Blogger Dunpizzle said...

Blogger J Tallent said...
hilarious the shot of Isaiah at the end of that Zach Randolph video.

Blogger chris said...
Kenyon feeds the fire that is a .com billionare!

CAPTCHA: "unfull," i.e. "Oliver Miller was unfull after eating yet another 64-ounce steak dinner in Amarillo for free."

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Sun Devil - I think that all these rules and the officiating that is done "in the spirit of avoiding all physical altercations in the NBA" is exactly what is wrong with the league right now (or at least, it's one of the things that's wrong with the league right now). I feel that suspensions should be doled out if there is an actual fight (you know, where punches are thrown and/or landed?). Suspensions should not be handed out in any other relatively normal basketball situation. So if someone goes into the stands for some reason, or commits a foul so egregious as to where there is no doubt whatsoever that the player was only trying to severely, and maliciously hurt someone else (and I can't even think of an example of this right now, and no, the Rambis clothesline would not meet that criteria, IMO), then those plays would not be considered "normal basketball situations" and thus could merit a suspension. But otherwise, if there is a punches-thrown fight, then you can hand out a suspension, and anything short of that should be dealt with in-game, either with technicals, flagrants or an ejection, but that's it.

I think that "altercations" like the one Carmelo got into last night should just get a technical, if that (maybe just a warning). I don't care if there is a possibility a shove like that could lead to a fight, I'm only interested in whether it did lead to a fight. If it leads to a fight, then eject and suspend (see above), but if not, then it's just some tempers flaring and doesn't need to be reviewed like the Zapruder Film.

Regarding flagrants, if there is a hard landing that looked to be excessive, then go check the video to see if it is absolutely evident that the player in question was not only not making a play on the ball, but was willing to risk the other player's safety without making a play on the ball. If it meets that criteria, then that's a flagrant one. I would say it's a flagrant two if it looks like the play had really nothing to do with the game (like Derek Fisher just body-checking Scola when it really had nothing to do with what was going on with the play). But if it's just a split-second poor decision about trying to stop a layup or something, in which there looked to be something behind it other than just making a play on the ball, then it's a flagrant one, even if it results in a really horrendous fall.

Everything else should be just a regular foul or a technical.

I think flagrant fouls should be a very rare occurrence in NBA games, and that's especially true in playoff games. In this 2nd round of the playoffs, in 16 games so far we've had 7 total flagrant fouls called, 6 of which happened in the 8 games played in the Western Conference, and that is just crazy. Like I said, I don't care if it's not consistent with what they've done in the past - they need to put a stop to this nonsense right now. Flagrant fouls should be just that: flagrant; and anything that happens with such regularity that it's almost an every game occurrence is not flagrant, but is rather just "the norm". Hard fouls are not flagrant, and should not be called as such.

Blogger chris said...
Wild Yams: I suspect the NBA's paranoia over any physical altercations has to do with trying to avoid any legal issues after what happened in Auburn Hills in '04.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
chris -- I don't think it's a question of legal issues so much as appearance. For good or ill, when hockey or football players get in a physical scuffle, they're tough guys (generally speaking). But when basketball players get rough, they're "thugs" who are "punking each other." And as that perception grows and takes firmer hold, fewer families (particularly white families) want to go to games, buy merchandise, etc. In short, it's bad business.

So I think Stern is less worried about lawsuits than selling his product.

Blogger skr said...
That scoring duel between Dirk and 'Melo last night will go down in history as the best 40+ duel between superstars with the ugliest women in league history.

Good lord, these guys are millionaires and they can't get anything better than that?!

Blogger Wild Yams said...
I don't think Mr. Bawful is far off in his assessment. There was a J.A. Adande piece up on ESPN recently which said some of the same things:

One of the reasons the NBA had to crack down on fighting was because it was horrified by the scenes of African-American men fighting each other. It was judged much more harshly than fighting in the overwhelmingly white NHL. And it's not just the different traditions and cultures of the games, not when you hear old-school NBA players and coaches talk about how they used to settle things with their elbows and fists back in the day. No, the league in its desire to make the game mainstream tried to eliminate the image of the Angry Black Man.

Today the climate has changed (and I'm not talking global warming). You don't just see the difference when you watch a presidential news conference; there are subtle differences in everyday life, as captured in this New York Times story pegged to a snapshot of opinions on the 100th day of the Obama administration. (Or for a more humorous take on the state of race relations, check out this bit on The Daily Show.)

What got me about the Times survey was the part that showed 66 percent of respondents thought race relations in this country are generally good. That's up from 25 percent in 1992, in a survey taken around the same time as the riots in Los Angeles that followed the Rodney King beating case verdict. While racism isn't extinct, it doesn't hover over everything in the NBA the way it did before, even as recently as the implementation of the dress code in 2005.

Does the league still need to be as intrusive? Do we need to wait for rulings from Stu Jackson, the NBA's executive vice president of operations, before we can assess which team has the advantage in a series?
Now I don't know if I agree that that is the root cause behind all of this, but it does seem plausible at least; and if it is true, then it is really shameful. The point is, it doesn't really matter so much what the reason for all this originally was, it has now definitely gotten out of hand. This paranoia about the league's image or whatever it is is really ruining the game. Basketball is a contact sport and is a very emotional game. You have to allow for people to play with their emotions and you have to allow for contact in the games. And if the contact is hard, then that's probably the result of just playing hard (especially in the playoffs), rather than some intent of malice on the part of these players.

Like I said before: let them play.

Blogger chris said...

Makes you wonder how much those perceptions fueled the Association's reactions to Tomjanovich/Washington as compared to later events, for better or for worse...though in that case, for me it's always been about the fact that the sequence led to very serious injury for Rudy T.

Blogger chris said...
Wild Yams: And don't forget that former Association employee Gary Bettman has been accused by many hockey fans of trying to "mainstream" fighting out of the sport in similar fashion, despite the entirely different demographics.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Look, for the record I'm not a fan of fighting in the NBA, and I'm not in favor of anything which encourages it. However, I don't think you need to go to the Draconian lengths that the NBA has to discourage fighting. When was the last time there was a bona fide, punches thrown fight in the NBA? How often do we see incidents like that? Certainly they're so infrequent as to not be the black eye the league worries they could be. If you want to punish players for actually fighting, then fine, I'm all for that. But I don't think you need to ramp up the punishments for anything which you think might lead in that direction. I also don't think you need to punish players for getting off the bench unless there is a real fight going on. I hate it when players are suspended for a game for leaving the bench area presumably to take part in a fight that never happened.

Penalize players for throwing punches all you want, but let all that other stuff go (or deal with it by handing out technical fouls).

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Yams -- As a basketball fan, I agree with you, and I have decried the general wussification of the league where standard hard fouls where a guy is just going for the ball or whatever are considered near criminal. However, it seems that the NBA is no longer really marketing to people like us, because for all our complaints, we're probably going to watch/follow the NBA through the good times and bad. Stern and company are more concerned about the people on the periphery, the families who are trying to figure out what to do on Saturday night, the executives who want to impress their clients by taking them to a hot ticket event, etc.

Basically, Stern wants the NBA to be a consumable product for as many different subsets (or subcultures or whatever) within our society as possible. That's why teams don't just have dancers now, they have senior groups, and fat guys, and three different kinds of mascots, and gymnastic teams, and "spirit" groups, so on and so forth. It's basically a strafing pattern design to hit the maximum number of demographics.

Part of the strategy, for good or ill, is to reduce the "mayhem" that had become a part of the NBA image, which sort of culminated with the Pacers-Pistons brawl.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
chris -- Regarding the Tomjanovich/Washington incident. I think that, back then, it was easier (in general) to treat an individual incident on its own merit. I might be wrong, and anybody who knows otherwise please correct me, but I've read a lot about The Punch, and nowhere did I see it suggested that it precipitated a widespread line of thinking that "Oh shit! The league is going straight to hell and this proves it!" But fast forward to 2004 and that's exactly what people were saying after Crazy Pills launched himself into the Detroit crowd.

Blogger chris said...
Bawful: Well...Clutch the Bear fits all of the demographics for the mascots, right? ;)

I think what made 2004 so different from Rudy T's near-death experience was simply the amount of fan involvement. And that by itself is why Stern and the other impresarios may have been more scared of it.

The worst example of a non-incident being treated harshly by the head offices had to be that oh-so-tough George Karl vs. Isiah Thomas near-brawl-that-wasn't a year or two after Auburn Hills. Prototypical example of the officiating mindset since 2004.

Blogger chris said...
Also, the Tomjanovich/Washington incident occurred right before the Association's big burst of Bird/Erving/Johnson popularity - back when the Finals were still mostly tape delayed, and the mid-markets were making it all the way. Who knows how the Stern era would have presided under those circumstances, if something to that magnitude occurred under his watch?

Blogger Nick Flynt said...
You're right Bawful, it was more like Kerm was taken as a brief scapegoat, as fighting an rough play continued on fifteen + years later.

On AK Dave's earlier comment:

I can't believe this is the first time someone has noticed that Linas Kleiza (former rotation player) should have been used as trade bait last year. I'm pretty sure I predicted it.

Karl trades Camby and Kleiza instead of trading one guy for nothing and the other go unused, and you probably had an easy 1st round pick to utilize.

Anonymous poptarted said...
The following is based on my former NHL fandom knowledge, having given up on the NHL in 2003 until Betteman is no longer commissioner.

Fighting has always been a part of the NHL, not even warranting suspensions. Guys have damaged other guy careers fighting in the NHL, and suspensions rarely are given out. Growing up playing hockey, fighting and generally hurting your opponent was part of the game (in pickup games and practice, but you'd get suspended for fighting in a highschool game if it was in fact a real fight, and not just a crappy punch).

The racially motivated marketing thing I think is important in the decision to curtail fighting, but crooked noses and missing teeth have affected the NHL's popularity too, so I think it's not accurate to say fighting in the NHL is okay because its whiter. It's okay to the few fans the NHL has because it's part of the game and always has been. I think it's less of a double standard than it is hockey is not basketball, and that while there may be racial marketing reasons behind the NBA rules, basketball is not a known as a contact sport.

If basketball was full contact there'd be way more fights (although I'm at a loss as to why there aren't more fights in the NFL, in spite of any rules against it). Basketball's rule set was set up to be non-contact and I think that was the reason for players to dribble the ball rather than running around rugby style. In fact there's similar limited contact fouling in Gaelic Football (where you have to "dribble/solo" as well).

In a non-contact sport I think there's only so much contact you can allow before either the game changes completely, or it becomes impossible to consistently officiate. By change I mean, I assume if hard fouls are cool, coaches would instruct players to deliver hard fouls, so you'd want big guys who could take it and dish it, but if they are not, then coaches would want a team full of fast guys. I guess it all depends on what basketball is "supposed" to be. I can't figure out what the NBA wants it to be either. They have all these hand checking rules, and then they let Big Baby throw hip checks instead of picks.

I think it's bad business to completely disallow contact/fighting in the NBA because people love violent sports, as long as it's the guys on the court/ice/cage fighting/getting clobbered and not in the stands. Right in front of the crowd on the court is a little discomforting. I think people don't protest wars for similar reasons.

So if the NBA wanted to allow fighting they could put up sideboards, or turnbuckles, to add separation from the fans. People would love this. Imagine how many teeth Kobe might be missing. The possibilities!

This goes great with the whole "court of nails" concept. Consider it added to the list.

Anonymous Sun Devil said...
To be fair, I really, really, dislike Carmelo Anthony. And he's no stranger to starting problems. He's the guy who actually got involved in the DEN/NY fight awhile back and ran from Nate Robinson. He's no stranger to this sort of thing and it bugs me more than others to see him get away with a slap to Wright's face (which probably would have escalated into something much worse had it been some players on other teams).

But, as I said, for the most part I agree with you. Flagrants are getting waaaay too often. But I think Bawful hit the nail on the head with Stern. The dude is a straight business man and he one of the folks credited for making the NBA mainstream. He's a business man first. He knows that most people will gripe about the officiating during the summer but come the start of next season -most- basketball fans won't remember specifics. It sucks, but it's the way it is.

Anonymous ak dave said...
Buck Nasty-

I figured LK would play well again this year... I was wrong. He is heavy and slow and his shot isn't falling. But he can draw flagrant fouls like a CHAMP!!

Anonymous PK said...
Hey Bawful,

Long time reader, virgin commenter. I don't know if you do this normally but with it being that time of the year with All NBA Teams (defensive, rookie etc) being announced, would you consider doing an All NBA Superdick Team??

Garnett would be the obvious choice for power forward and captain.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
PK -- Hey, welcome to the comments section. We promise to be gentle...but only your first time.

An all superdick team sounds like a fun idea. I might want to do it as a poll, tho'...hmm...

poptarted (and everyone else) -- Time for a little history lesson. Although Dr. Naismith originally conceived basketball as a non-contact sport, professional basketball in the U.S. owes much of its origin to hockey. Yes indeed, early basketball team owners (like Walter Brown) were hockey owners first. Only, to pay for the costs of operating a hockey arena, they had to find ways to fill the house virtually every day of the week...otherwise they ran the risk of going bankrupt.

As a consequence, early basketball crowds often were actually hockey crowds. And those crowds wanted, nay, expected a show. And by show I mean mayhem: fights, mayhem, physical play bordering on brutal. Back in the day, the paint was referred to as the butcher shop because if you went there, you were likely to come out bloody. Players fought, coaches fought, hell, sometimes managers would come out of the crowd and fight coaches.

As the years have gone by, that rough stuff has been slowly legislated out of basketball. Probably for the betterment of the league. However, there's always that question of how far is too far.

Blogger HoopBlah said...
Reggie Miller is at it again in Game 5:

"Kendrick Perkins keeps massaging that sore left shoulder. I don't know if Dwight Howard is banging him or what."

Blogger Dunpizzle said...
This time Orlando completes the blowjob by turning the blowout into a loss.

Blogger Trev said...
The tv show "Fringe" should get a worst of the night. In the episode they where talking about "alternate universes" and a bunch of other stuff that really isn't important to this particular worst. Anyway the last scene shows an alternate world where the Twin Towers still stand

and while in an office in the Towers they show a quick shot of a newspaper on a desk.

Len Bias leads sweep wins MVP. While I appreciate the reference Bias would be what 45 now? Also what's more fucked up being upset at bringing back up the lost potential of Len Bias and not the reference where over 3,000 people died?

Anonymous Anonymous said...
von wafer got blocked by sasha douche-acic. nothing more need be said...

Anonymous Anonymous said...
So Dwight Howard (mind you the DPOY) canĀ“t control Glen "fat baby" Davis? Does that make Baby the MVP?

Anonymous stockton said...
Hey, Mr. bawful:

Along with the "all-lacktion", and "super-dickery", I propose the "all-star hombres" and the "all-star gasols", sorry, "wussies".

Blogger Nick Flynt said...
Completes the blowjob...heheh

Houston gets embarrassed at home. If Ron Artest and someone else don't go off for 25-30 in the next game, there is no hope left for knocking out the Lakers.

Not to mention the non-defense, giving up 53% shooting while while only shooting 30+% themselves. Rockets stank it up.

Cap: Equlize

The league continues to try to equilize their awful refs with make-up calls.

Blogger shayan said...
Mr.Bawful, I'm running on four hours of sleep and getting ready to go write an exam (so of course instead I'm reading this blog, priorities right?)and just broke out laughing watching that Zach Randolph - Where Will Amazing Happen clip. Thanks for posting that, it gave me a much needed laugh.

Anonymous Barry said...
I get spontaneous patches of rash in the most intimate of places whenever I discover Reggie Miller is calling the game I'm about to watch.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Poptarted - +1. To add a little, there is also a culture in the NHL that has social rules to fighting. Interfere with the goalie? You're fair game. Jawing off? Fair game. Dirty hit? Fair game. Running up the score? Fair game. One-on-one showdown? Fair game. Using stick like a sword? No-no. Coming off bench? No-no. (Admittedly, having a wall there helps) Sucker punches? No-no. Going after skill players without provocation? That's the worst ju-ju. You pretty much just put a bounty on yourself.

The NBA doesn't really have any set culture of what's OK and what's not when it comes to physicality. Part of that is the inconsistency of the league THROUGHOUT the years. Part of it is the inconsistency of the physcial nature of the positions. A guard throwing his weight around can be a foul, where as a foward or center doing it is just post play. The inverse of that for slapping and flailing hands. I also think that there's a different fan psychology at work because hockey is separated by a wall/glass. B-ball fans are right there, getting spit on, swung at by The Drain (he should still thank his lucky stars he slipped on that punch). Also, the nature of penalties is drastically different. The penalty box for 2, 4 or 5 minutes (especially a major) is MUCH more damaging than the potential for two points from the stripe.

Update on that there history lesson, Bawful. Naismith actually used lacrosse as more of his inspiration than hockey. But, then again, hockey also came from lacrosse. You got served!

I like the idea of turnbuckles with the floor of nails. The combo of slamming people into corners and bouncing off of the ropes would be awesome. How about razor wire around the backboard, too?

Anonymous poptarted said...
I'm all for more contact, but I think basketball is perceived as a non-contact sport now, and that's what people know. Back in the day, basketball was relatively unknown, but now everyone is aware of it and have a notion of what it is, some prejudiced, some not.