home cooking (hom kook'-ing) noun. The phenomenon in which the performance of a player or team improves dramatically when they get to play on their home court. This often takes the form of an increased number of free throw attempts for the home team and a conspicous number of non-calls for the road team.
Usage example: The Miami/Chicago series looked hopeless for the Bulls...until they made it back to Chicago for some home cooking.
Word Trivia: Jermaine O'Neal must not like the state of New Jersey. In the first two games of the Pacers' opening round series against the Nets, O'Neal had managed only 27 total points (on 8-for-22 shooting) to go along with 11 turnovers and 10 personal fouls. After the Pacers got blown out in Game 2, O'Neal openly criticized the officiating (a fairly common tactic during the Playoffs). He was fined $15,000, but it was worth every penny. The Pacers, feeling frisky in the friendly confines of Conseco Field House, got to the charity stripe 42 times. O'Neal shot 14 of those freethrows on his way to a game-high 37 points. Suffice to say, the Pacers won the game to go up 2-1 in the series. A few hundred miles away, the Chicago Bulls were also enjoying the taste of some home cooking. After two close losses in Miami, the Bulls received 46 foul shots while Shaq got into early foul trouble, followed by mid-game foul trouble, and finally end-of-game foul trouble. The result: a Bulls blowout victory over the Heat, all thanks to the chefs...er, refs.
Ben Gordan says: "There's only one place we can geta Chicago-style hot dog. And 46 free throws."