Marc

The Phoenix Suns: If there was a real-life roller coaster -- let's call it the Sarver Dream Killer -- that was as up-and-down as this Phoenix team, it would boast a 100 percent vomit-inducement rate. Which, somewhat ironically, is the same vomit-inducement rate the Suns currently have among their fans. To wit: Sunday's hope-lifting win in Detroit was followed up by one of their signature (these days) embarrassing defeats in Philadelphia. The Suns hit only 42 percent of their field goals as Steve Nash (2 points on 1-for-8) and Shaq (7 points on 3-for-7) showed why it's risky to use them in back-to-back games. They also committed 18 turnovers -- Philly's defensive bread and butter -- which allowed the Sixers to get out in transition (19 fast break points) and outscore the Suns 25-13 in points off of TOs. Phoenix was also mandangled on the boards: The Sixers outrebounded them 54-41 and pulled 22 ricochets on the offensive end. So basically...they were outplayed in every phase of the game. Unless "Most Failed Expectations" counts as a phase.

Amare Stoudemire: One of the storylines of this game was how STAT bravely shrugged off those pesky trade rumors to lead the Suns in scoring (19 points on 7-for-13 shooting plus 6 boards). He also added a game-high 3 blocked shots. Not bad. But -- and you knew there was a "but" coming, right? -- he was pretty thoroughly outplayed by Marreese Speights, who had a career-high 24 points (11-for-14) in only 24 minutes of action. Amare, meanwhile, was outrebounded by both Speights (7) and Andre Miller (9 in 27 minutes) despite the fact that he played a game-high 39 minutes. And for those of you who might be blaming Stoudemire's lack of board work on Shaq, The Big Creaky logged only 21 minutes of PT. Who was stealing Amare's boards while Shaq was decomposing on the bench?

The Los Angeles Clippers: In other "They Are Who We Thought They Were" news, the Clippers were beaten by 21 in Charlotte. But that's to be expected, what with all the inju...wait, what? Baron Davis, Marcus Camby and Zach Randolph are all back? And Z-Bo went for 20 points, 10 boards, 4 assists and 2 steals? Okay then, I guess Mike Dunleavy Sr. needs some new excuses. Maybe the team's circadian rhythms were off? That used to be a favorite of Phil Jackson. But here was Camby's spin: "The last game of a trip, I've been around a long time, I know how these games can be tough. Especially right before the All-Star break, you tend to lose a little focus. Your mind is elsewhere." Oh, gee, Marcus, I sure hope that stupid basketball game didn't get in the way of your daydreaming. (FWIW: Camby is on the payroll for $8 million this season. That's not an attention-grabber? I sure bet he'd notice if his paycheck was direct-deposited.)

The fourth quarter was an epic example of Clipper futility, as The Other L.A. Team got gunned down by Vladimir Radmanovic's trio of triples en route to getting outscored 29-12 over those final 12 minutes. The rest of the stats were classic Clippers as well: 39 percent shooting, 13 missed three-pointers, 7 bonked free throws, 18 turnovers and a measely 73 points scored. Oh, and did I mention that the Bobcats laid this smack down without Gerald Wallace (rib, lung) and Raja Bell (groin)? Well, they did.

Juwan Howard: Huh? The 'Cats were missing Nook, too? Why was he...a "sore toe" flared up after Sunday's loss to Miami?! Reminds me of a word that rhymes with "mangina." I think it's...mangina.

The Houston Rockets: They were facing the Milwaukee M.A.S.H. unit, a team that was missing Michael Redd (knee), Andrew Bogut (back) and Luke Ridnour (thumb). Didn't matter. They got burned by Ramon Sessions (26 points, 8-for-12, 7 assists) and Charlie Villanueva (25 points, 9-for-18, 8 rebounds). The Rockets, supposedly a top-notch defensive team, let the M.A.S.H. unit hit rack up 31 assists on 47 field goals. Speaking of field goals, Milwaukee hit 53 percent of theirs, and 50 percent of their threes. And Houston forced only 7 turnovers. Said Knee-Mac: "Right now, we're just a team that doesn't know how to play defense." Well said! Speaking of McGrady...

Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming: Knee-Mac shot 1-for-9 and had just as many fouls as points (3). McGrady is 4-of-19 for 10 points in two games against the Bucks this season. Meanwhile, Shaquie Chan was limited to only 18 minutes of daylight due to foul trouble and finished with 7 points on 2-for-8 shooting.

The New Orleans Hornets: No Chris Paul. No David West. No Tyson Chandler. And, dear merciful Odin, no hope. The key stat here is this: 29 percent shooting (26-for-88). But here's what's even crazier -- like "bag of snapping monkey heads" crazy -- the Grizzlies also held the Craptors to 29 percent shooting last Saturday. [Gratuitous Stat Alert!!] That was the first two-game stretch of holding opponents under 30 percent shooting since 1959. By the Grizzlies! Here's the scoop: "According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it marked the first time in more than 49 years that a team has held consecutive opponents under 30 percent shooting from the field. The last time was December 19-20, 1959, when the then-St. Louis Hawks held Philadelphia to 26.9 percent and Detroit to 29.9 the next night." So, congrats, Hornets. That's some pretty historic fail, right there.

I should also mention the Grizzlies' utter domination of the boards: 64-38. That included 20 offensive rebounds for Memphis, which led to a 23-8 edge in second-chance points. I'll have to check with a stats guru like John Hollinger to be sure, but I would think that was a pretty big factor in a 5-point loss.

David West: Here's a belated WotN for the missing David West, who got suspended for this:


I might be more forgiving if West didn't have a history of superdickery...

The Memphis Grizzlies: Better file this under "Wins That Aren't As Good As Others." They were playing at home against a team that was missing its top three players and apparently forgot what a basket looks like...and they barely won! Plus, check out the stats: 36 percent shooting, 3-for-15 from beyond the arc, 9 missed free throws, 18 turnovers, 85 points scored. I'm not going to label them the worst winning team of all time. Not after reading about how crappy teams were in the 50s, anyway. Update! An anonymous commenter reminded me of something I should have noted: "To be fair, the Grizzlies were without two starters in that game as well, with Rudy Gay out injured and Darrell Arthur on a leave of absence due to the passing of his grandmother." Fair enough. Sucking excused.

Lacktion report: There's no rest for the wicked around here, nor is there any respite for Chris from another night of intense lactivity.

Bobcats-Clippers: The Donald Sterling "Basketball" Playset is only equipped to resemble a sports team, not actually play the role of one. This unavoidable fact once again made itself clear with a blowout loss in Charlotte, where Chiekh Samb silently secured a 1.2 trillion fortune, a take large enough that he probably could buy his very own collection of basketball action figures to mismanage and neglect.

The home team didn't disappoint either in giving its lacktators enough garbage time to avoid positive additions to their stat lines, as Bobcats "power" forward Sean May kept the lights off with a suck differential of +2 in 6:21 via foul and brick, while Sean Singletary fouled once for +1 in 1:59.

Sixers-Suns: Robin Lopez makes an appearance in the ledger with one foul for +1 in a snooze-inducing 6:23 for the Suns; Philly's Kareem Rush bricked twice (once from downtown) for +2 in 3:37. Lopez's singular foul was enough to grant him a Madsen-level 1:0 Voskuhl! Memo to Mareese Speights: Dunking over Mr. Lopez doesn't change your "underated" status one bit.

Rockets-Bucks: When the Rockets called Dikembe Mutombo to rejoin them after his early-season hibernation/mummification, I suspect he wasn't signed to help Clutch the Bear install a new Wii in the Toyota Center locker room -- but a 36-second Mario suggests otherwise! That is, a Mario according to Yahoo's box score at least -- as no other source is entirely sure of the magnitude of Mutombo's non-contribution this evening. As of 9:45 PM PST, CBS Sportsline's box score claims he didn't even show up on the court, while ESPN credits him with a 5 trillion.
The NBA and Geico: I know this is a few days late, but...it was so cool when the NBA announced a H-O-R-S-E competition for All-Star weekend. But all that coolness, and then some, got flushed down David Stern's crapper upon the following announcement: The contestants will be playing G-E-I-C-O instead. Wow. That's so stupid that, well, even a caveman wouldn't do it. Look, I understand the whole corporate sponsorship thing, so I would have expected it to be named "The Geico H-O-R-S-E Shootout" or whatever. But come on, NBA and Geico. What's next? Changing the name of the All-Star Game to the AutoTrader.com Game? Yeesh. I wish that a feminine hygiene product company had bought the rights and the ballers were forced to play T-A-M-P-A-X. Maybe that would have gotten the point across.

Kobe Bryant: Mamba used a black Sharpie to write "anime porn collection -- schoolgirl Yumi and little baby Kiki's adventure" on a blank CD. The next time Kobe passed Luke Walton in the crowded Lakers locker room, he bumped into Luke and dropped the CD. He quickly picked it up and said, "Luke, you dropped your...WHAT IS THIS STUFF? OH MY GOD?!" Derek Fisher hasn't talked to Luke since.

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42 Comments:
Blogger chris said...
Hey, if STAT keeps getting outplayed, he might shake off the trade rumors once and for all!

Of course, becoming an obstacle to victory isn't the usual route to keeping a roster spot, but in the post-'antoni world, avoiding consistency seems to be key now in Phoenix's continuing search for an identity.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Wait, did I miss the Worst of Weekend?

Blogger chris said...
An article on NBA tattoos, sadly no mention of Ostertag's Fred Flinstone:

http://www.usaweekend.com/09_issues/090208/090208sports-tattoos.html

But Scrappy Doo on Brad Miller? No wonder the Kings are so bawful.

Blogger chris said...
Bill Simmons makes a supposition similar to that of Evil Ted's!

http://sports.espn.go.com/espnmag/story?id=3896242

Anonymous jodial said...
Can anyone else think of a player who, 3 seasons after winning the MVP award, failed to make the All-Star team? Excepting players who were injured or who had retired, of course.

That's today's Steve Nash for you...also the only MVP winner to never play in an NBA Final.

And he won the award twice!

Blogger Caleb said...
David West wasn't trying to hurt poor Miller. He was trying to make a play on the ball... an ill-timed, idiotic, frustration-fueled play on the ball, but a play on the ball nonetheless. Obviously, it turned into a play on Miller's head.

Still, I don't think the suspension was warranted.

Blogger Ace said...
please get this epic fail by knee-mac up

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKggO62YPs4

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
Re HORSE: I suppose on one hand this was to prevent the schoolyard insults in this game, such as H-O: you're a ho! H-O-R: you're a whore! So now we can go G-E-I: you're a gay! Asinine.

Kobe Bryant continued: However, new kid in town Adam Morrison ever since keeps calling Luke "to hang out" and "trade collections".

(and I don't know if this was intentional, but Yumi and little Kiki are quite innocently SFW. Unless you put the search terms into 4chan (or freaking Google images even with SafeSearch on holy crap don't do that at work I'm probably going to be called by my HR rep, seriously, damn you Japan.))

Anonymous Stotts Era said...
surely youve seen this (i saw it on Ball Don't lie)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKggO62YPs4

also check out my atlanta hawks blahg!
http://www.chriscampana.com/stottsera/

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
Bonus! More Street Fighter/NBA crossover: OKC's new mascot will be a (M?) Bison! (bottom of the page)

Anonymous Anonymous said...
bawful u have to have a super turbo vaccuum award for each night, for things with super suction like t'mace especially. he joined the elite company of vonislav waferdenko, they are trying to make the NBA rim mvp this year, by get their layups or dunks stuffed by the rim, t'mac had an ultimate showdown of one on one with the rim, no one was around them twenty feet out and the epic fail came when he attemped a reverse layup and found the rim pulled a dikembe mutumbo on his sorry youknowwhat, and ron ron and some bench player was dying of hysterical laughters on the bench, quite a sight to behold. during the season i have watched at least four rejection by the rim. good news for u houstone, u got t'mac for a measly bargain of 24 mil next year.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
To be fair, the Grizzlies were without two starters in that game as well, with Rudy Gay out injured and Darrell Arthur on a leave of absence due to the passing of his grandmother.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Since Chris brought it up and I have no where else to rant about Bill Simmons' article, I'm gonna do so here. First, Simmons trying to say he's not a Kobe hater is about as believable as it would be if he tried to say he's not a Boston homer. Second, he rips Kobe apart for his 61 in MSG because of stupid stuff like "A third friend was there and swore that Kobe eyeballed Trevor Ariza after Trev made the mistake of swishing a 24-footer in the fourth." Yeah, that's definitive. He then sums up that LeBron's game was infinitely better than Kobe's due simply to the rest of the stat line (11 & 9 as opposed to 3 & 0).

Look, I don't know who had the better individual game, that's for others to debate. However, I think it's pretty silly to say Kobe had his game at the expense of his teammates or that the way he played was to the detriment of the team. After all, the Lakers beat the Knicks handily while the Cavs had to eek out the win at the end in a game that went down to the wire. And for all the talk about how Kobe had only three assists while LeBron had 11 so it's clear that LeBron made his teammates better while Kobe did not, it should be noted that nobody else on Cleveland scored more than 15 and that supposed All Star Mo Williams only had 9 points on 3-12 shooting; while in the Laker game Pau Gasol had 31 points on 17 shots. My point is this: just looking at two statlines and saying one is better really doesn't tell the full tale of which player's team played better. Sure LeBron's stats were more well rounded, but Kobe's team had the easier time winning, due in large part to the huge contribution he got from his teammates.

Finally, I'll say this: when you look at what Kobe did, scoring 61 points on the day the Lakers spirits were no doubt really low from learning about Bynum's prognosis; and then look at the effect that had on the Lakers for the rest of the week, you really have to be a hater to still view it in a negative light.

Blogger Ry said...
G-E-I-C-O? I have an idea: B-L-O-O-D-Y C-O-U-P D'-E-T-A-T. Hey Stern, how much for 20 minutes with your daughter, you f***ing pimp? Kleptocratic scumbag. Now look -- you've upset Chavez's parrot! BLOARGH!!!!!

jodial: Did Bill Simmons pay you? Steve Nash dropped 21 dimes the other night on one of the league's top five defenses. I'm with FreeDarko on this one: screw championships. It's the individuals and hardwood joie de vive that make the NBA so wonderful. And All-Star balloting -- oh so objective -- is hardly a measure of anything. I'm just sayin'...

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Anonymous #1 -- No, you didn't miss it. I took a weekend off from Worst Of duties due to persistent flu-like symptoms.

chris -- I'm sorry, but Brad needs to turn his genitals over to the Basketbawful Emasculation Department for that "Scrappy Doo" tat. Immediately.

jodial -- Trips to the Finals and championships are team accomplishments, the MVP is for individuals. In fact, the regular season MVP has gone on to win the title only twice since Jordan retired (Tim Duncan in 2002-03 and Shaq in 1999-00). Other former MVPs (such as David Robinson, Dr. J and Bob McAdoo) won it all while in a subordinate role. Charles Barkley and Karl Malone (another two-time winner) never got a ring. That doesn't diminish what those men accomplished in their MVP years, and the Suns' struggles this season don't, IMHO, tarnish what Nash did in his.

Caleb -- I respectfully disagree. I've played enough basketball to know when a player is hitting his opponent with a little extra mustard. And West was definitely taking a shot at Miller.

Ace -- Done. New post.

AnacondaHL -- I chose some anime that was SFW in case somebody decided to do a search. If it turned up something nasty, well, my bad. Guess I'll have to make up my anime names next time.

Stott's Era -- Done. And by the way, I misspelled your name on the first accreditation. Sorry 'bout that.

AnacondaHL -- YES.

Anonymous #2 -- I don't know which shocked me more. Knee-Mac's reverse rim-stuff or your reference to Vonislav Waferdenko.

Anonymous #3 -- You're right. I updated the post to note that.

Wild Yams -- I agree. Simmons' comparison of the two performances was rather short-sighted. He's the same guy who would tell you that one of Bird's subpar games (by the numbers) was actually great because Bird did what he had to do for his team to win. Well, that's what Kobe did. And he produced an epic scoring game right when his teammates needed a lift. Guhhhh...am I defending Kobe? Excuse me. I must go throw up in my mouth now.

Ry -- Have some respect, dude. Refer to Stern's daughter by her given name, the Gatorade "Commissioner's Offspring," who is also brought to you by McDonald's.

Anonymous NB said...
nobody seems to be mentioning the irony that by naming the competition GEICO instead of HORSE, the advertisers seem to be missing the point of the game.

I can't wait to hear the announcers struggle with the awkward language: "...and the first player to get GEICO loses...uh..." They should have named it the "ALL-STATE competition sponsored by GEICO if they really wanted to entertain.

Blogger BadDave said...
AnacondaHL - Awesome. Of course, then the Klahmanians would be able to take two steps to the basket across the whole court as they do their ridiculous head-toe double kick charge move. It's a good thing flaming head-butt torpedoes are limited to Slamball!

Poor Raul Julia. What a movie to end on.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Mr. Bawful, I'm sorry for putting you in a position to where you had to defend Kobe. I promise it'll never happen again :)

I'll jump in on the Nash debate though. While I don't think Nash deserved his second MVP, the miraculous jump in the standings that the Suns made in Nash's first year was pretty compelling evidence in his favor for winning his first one. I've always thought D'Antoni's game plan is one that's specifically tailored to regular season success, but is poorly fitted for postseason success, so it makes sense that Nash won those MVP awards even if his team never made the Finals. I also think that Nash's personal dropoff this year has a lot to do with the mess the team has become through no fault of his own (Sarver, Kerr, I'm looking at you), and due to pretty inept coaching from Terry Porter. Shaq's clown cancer of the locker room routine probably isn't helping either. I have to say, it takes a special kind of person to be able to hate Steve Nash.

The guy can outswim sharks, after all.

Blogger DDC said...
Yeah, Nashty is dealing with some serious ineptitude from his management team. Where do you guys/gals stand on the trade Stoudamire stance that Phoenix has reportedly taken? Granted STAT has defencies in his game(poor rebounder/defender, possibly crazy as catshit), but isn't a bit earlier to give on player with his abilities? He just turned 26 and his best playing days may still be ahead of him. We've seen this happen before, most notably with Chris Webber and Golden State, and I think Phoenix will rue making that trade if they make it.

Blogger flohtingPoint said...
Gah... Sarver... He's like Bizzaro Jerry Jones. Seriously, Al Davis makes better decisions than Robert...

Jerry Colanaglo was 29 when he started running the Phoenix Suns, that's less than a year older than me and even he didn't make these kind of retarded moves. Everyone makes mistakes (backcourt 2000, trading DJ for table scraps, Marbury), but nothing that made as little sense as "Well, were trying to save money, so lets trade Marion for someone less mobile, much older and with a HUGE contract.".

Blogger Basketbawful said...
NB -- Huh! You're absolutely right. I guess that's what they get for hiring a bunch of cavemen to do their marketing.

BadDave -- Of course you realize I can never think of M. Bison without imagining you pantomiming his signature move in the Wiley Hall cafeterial.

Wild Yams -- While I agree with your analysis of D'Antoni's style in principle, I really would have liked to see what the 2005 would have done against the Spurs if Joe Johnson hadn't obliterated his face. (And for those of you who don't think he would have made that much of a difference, I submit to you how little Travis Best affected the Pacers-Bulls ECF series in 1998: One major mismatch can make a huge difference.) Likewise, I would have liked to see what the 2006 team would have been without Amare's knee explosion. And I would have been interested in the 2007 team's chances if Nash's nose hadn't burst in that Game 1 against the Spurs and if those suspensions hadn't happened. I'm just saying...there were a lot of circumstances. The Shaq/Kobe/Mailman/Glove experiment in L.A. is considered a failure, but that team looked pretty damn unstoppable before Malone hurt his knee. There's a very fine line between winning and losing. I'm just sayin'.

DDC -- Agreed. I wrote at By The Horns that it would be stupid for the Bulls to trade FOR Stoudemire, and, conversely, I think it would be madness for the Suns to trade him away. Shaq, Nash and Grant Hill are nearing the end of the line. If they're going to rebuild, why not plan to rebuild around Amare, Barbosa and Richardson? That's a young core that could be playing together for years. But I guess that makes too much sense for Sarver.

flohtingPoint -- Obviously, you probably remember me freaking out about the Shaq trade. I'm not any happier about it now. Some people have tried to vindicate Sarver and Kerr by pointing out that Shaq has played well this season...and he has...but it's been at the cost of everybody else, not to mention team chemistry. There have been a lot of Shaq-Duncan comparisons over the last few years, since they're the two most dominant big men of the current generation and they both have the most titles (4). But there's a major difference, and it's that Duncan doesn't care about being the team's focal point or getting his numbers. Shaq seems to have settled into a "Well, I probably ain't gonna win any more titles so I'd better start padding my career numbers" mode. Duncan, simply put, is one of those awesome "anything to win" guys. I'd take Duncan over Shaq (in their primes) any day.

Blogger flohtingPoint said...
@Bawful: Who could forget? You posted my phony phonecall the day afterward.

Duncan/Shaq debate is a no-brainer, Duncan any day of the week. Reminds me of the talk about Hakeem and Shaq before their finals showdown. 4 straight games later that talk died own pretty quickly.

Blogger Caleb said...
Bawful... a little extra mustard? Maybe. But I still generally think the intent was to go for the ball.. very aggressively yes. But West is a smart guy, he's not gonna intentionally knock the crap out of someone's head... and even with the Dirk incident in mind, West has never struck me as a dirty player.

I'm a Hornets fan who watches every single game. I've seen West play a lot and I've seen plenty of interviews with him and such. Like I said, he's a smart player and a gerneally friendly guy from what I've gathered. I just don't think there was any real malicious intent there. West's face after the play has a "oh damn, I didn't mean to do that" look on it.

But... I could be wrong.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
The Shaq trade really made no sense, even at the time. Not only were they supposedly in cost cutting mode when they added his insanely bloated contract, but they said they wanted to improve on defense and rebounding... so they traded the team's best defender and rebounder?

The move to unload Amare is supposedly very much driven by finances, and the Suns reportedly are looking to get an expiring contract and a young talent for him (which actually is the same thing the Grizzlies were looking to get in return for Pau Gasol last year). They're also reportedly looking to unload Shaq to anyone who will take him (even the Lakers). So basically trading for Shaq killed the Suns, and as a nice bonus, it might have made the payroll too high to let Phoenix hang on to Amare. It's gonna be interesting to see what the atmosphere in Phoenix is like this weekend for the All Star game, especially if Shaq and/or Amare get dealt between now and then.

Mr. Bawful, you're definitely right that there were circumstances beyond D'Antoni's control with those Suns teams. I still think his style of play is not conducive to winning in the postseason, but for a couple years there, Phoenix had so much talent it probably wouldn't have mattered if not for the bad luck they suffered.

And you're right about what could have been for the Lakers in '04 if Malone hadn't hurt his knee against, ironically, Phoenix.

Blogger Jarret said...
I feel that it should be noted that Charlotte is quietly building a pretty quality team this season.

Blogger Caleb said...
The whole Suns debacle just shows that teams (GMs, owners, sometimes the fans) are way too quick to wanna blow things up when things aren't going perfectly. I still don't understand the rationale of destroying a team that is giving you 50+ wins every year and is one of the most loved teams in sports. Yeah, yeah... the first round loss and the whole "D'Antoni lost the team" nonsense. Blah.. only 1 team can win the championship... so I say stick with what's working rather than try and make it work *even better*. That tends to backfire...

Blogger Basketbawful said...
flohtingPoint -- That's why I said "obviously." I only added "probably" because it seems somewhat egotistical to just assume you'd remember what I wrote prior to your wicked-awesome fake phone call.

Caleb -- Hey, I'm not saying that West is a dirty player, and I'm sure he's smart and friendly and all that. But he's also tough as nails and somebody I wouldn't want to cross. And, you know, Kevin McHale was one of the friendliest, most fun-loving guys I ever had the pleasure of watching play basketball...but he still clotheslined Kurt Rambis. These things happen.

Wild Yams -- Well, the trade made sense insomuch as Kerr and Sarver had mad plans to build "The San Antonio Spurs, Part II." But they (very) incorrectly assumed that Shaq could fulfill the same role on the team as Duncan does for the Spurs. But that's what happens with trades. GMs always seem to think that great players are "plug and play" pieces that can be used interchangably and in different roles. That's the real reason behind Kurt Warner's "amazing resurgence" in the NFL this season. New York and then Arizona tried to use him in a different system while expecting him to put up similar numbers to his early days in St. Louis. Only when they tailored the offense to his skills did things take off.

Anyway, I understand they want to cut costs and save money, but at worst they're gonna take a one-year hit, since Shaq's contract expires after next season. Why give up on your best young player? That's like dooming the team for years to come.

Agreed. D'Antoni's style, in general, isn't good for rings, but the Suns talent and Nash's amazing play could have been enough to push them through...perhaps. We'll never know.

And there's never been a doubt in my mind that the '04 Lakers would have won it all with a healthy Malone. And that would have changed NBA history pretty significantly, since I doubt that team would have been blown up; management would have brought them back and given them a chance to repeat. No Shaq-to-Miami, no Heat championship and Finals MVP for Wade...

Jarret -- You're right. I hate to admit it, but Larry Brown is doing it again.

Blogger Caleb said...
Bawful... good point.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
Caleb -- Exactly. Can you imagine if the Jazz had tossed Jerry Sloan during those first few rough post-Stockton/Malone years? Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither are NBA teams.

Blogger Caleb said...
Yeah that's one thing I respect about the Jazz.. they've never given up on Sloan. No, he's never won a championship and he may never win one. But he's kept the team intensely competitive for two decades, with only a few down years. That's more than many teams can claim.

Blogger Wild Yams said...
I gotta agree with Jarret, the Cats are slowly becoming a team to be reckoned with. Diaw in particular is working out great, as is Raja Bell; and I think the trade for Vlad Radmanovic is going to be a good one too. Radmanovic is a very skilled player, but he was just buried on the Lakers behind all the players they have. The dude definitely has some game and it looks like he'll get to show it in Charlotte. The question now is, does Michael Jordan deserve any credit for any of this, or is it all Larry Brown?

Blogger chris said...
Wild Yams/Bawful: And how long will Larry Brown last in Charlotte before he starts to get tired of success, like he did in Detroit?

Anonymous AK Dave said...
So how would you feel about Shaq going to the bulls for Tyrus and Kirk or Ben?

Obviously you think Amare is a bad fit in Chicago, but the big Pythagorean Theorem might help them out over there... and clearly Thomas isn't fitting in over there.

Your thoughts?

Anonymous AK Dave said...
Charlotte definitely came out the winner on that Morrison-for-Space Cadet trade. Vlade is a nice player; he was loved when he played in Seattle. The guy can shoot the 3 and rebounds pretty well when asked to do so. He's also an awesome snowboarder.

Morrison can do little more than grow a whispy, lame mustache and beat his own head with his fists while screaming.

When Gerald Wallace is back in action, they are going to be even better. All they need is a good PG (so do most teams, sadly).

Blogger DDC said...
Yams - I'd say that Larry Brown is man most responsible of the Bobcats mini-resurgence(and I say that grudgingly, I'm not really a fan of Coach "Play the Right Way..." Brown). If you look at their roster a lot of the same parts are in place from MJ's mis-management reign. He's getting positive more contributions from Okafor(he even had an assist last night!) and Raymond Felton. Then you look at the trades that have been made under his watch(Diaw/Bell for Richardson in particular)and whadda you know they actually have a team that competes this year. I just wonder how long it will take for Larry to pull his usual prima donna shtick and make everybody weary with his neurotic personality because you know that's going to happen as well.

Blogger flohtingPoint said...
@AK Dave: I think The Big Debilitated has the final say on where he goes, as I believe there is a no-trade clause in his contract.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
it's pretty crazy that not one t-wolve (wolf?) went over and helped Miller up off the floor. Good teamwork, guys.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Wait, did someone say that snowflake can rebound? He plays like a SG in a PF body. Isn't a decent rebounded with for that size.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
maybe this falls on the unintentional dirty quote machine. Paul Millsap: "The physicality of the game, a lot of dirty work that I do, the licks I take — I mean, I think it's all just taking a toll on me right now," he said.

http://deseretnews.com/article/0,5143,705283960,00.html

Blogger Drake said...
In their primes? Nawww....

I'm almost never a Shaq defender. But in his prime, the Big Aristotle was completely unstoppable. He was like Wilt - the refs had deliberate behind the scenes in order to figure out the best way to officiate him. He might have been out of shape for half of the regular season, but come playoff time, nobody wanted to face him and Kobe. He was unmovable in the post, demanded double or triple teams, and was athletic as hell for anybody, never mind a 7-foot 340 pound behemoth.

I love Tim Duncan, but in their primes, I would take Shaq, hands down.

If the question was "Who would you take over a career?", then it would be Timmy, hands down. He's the ultimate winner of this generation.

Blogger lordhenry said...
I know I'm late with this, but bravo to Wild Yams for his decronstruction of the simmons article. Sure, I'd like Kobe to have more rebounds and assists in a 61-point game, but that was the lift the team needed, no doubt.

The only thing Simmons is right about is Christina Hendricks, she is smoking hot.....

Anonymous Anonymous said...
wow. just wanted to say thanks for linking to a clip in which a local network sports anchor uses the phrase "pimp slap" on air at least five times. that is all.

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