Friday-001

Editor's note: If you haven't voted for Basketbawful in the Basketblog Header Finals yet...what are you waiting for? A warning from the Surgeon General?

The Detroit Pistons: They took their best shot at actually winning a game in this series, holding the Crabs to 41 percent field goal accuracy and limiting them to 9 third-quarter points. They were also aided and abetted by a Cleveland team that shanked 11 free throws and missed 18 of their 22 three-point attempts. Sadly, the Pistons connected on only 38 percent of their own shots, and they weren't able to contain LeBron (25 points, 11 rebounds, 9 assists) or even Joe Beast, who had a career playoff-high 19 points and 10 rebounds. And now Detroit, a team that has advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals for six straight seasons, is on the brink of being swept away like stale breadcrumbs. Said The Phantom of Auburn Hills: "This is killing me. I can't even lie. ... It's killing me -- just the simple fact -- how great we were, being down 0-3, being the eighth seed and watching them celebrate shot after shot."

Rasheed Wallace: His lifeless, "I really don't give a f*** anymore" performance was best summed up by this line from the AP recap: "The 34-year-old Wallace scored just five points, looking past his prime, banged up and uninterested." 'Sheed does realize it's a contract year, right?!

Detroit fans: From the AP game notes: "Between the third and fourth quarters, an altercation led to one fan landing the hardest punch at The Palace since the infamous 2004 brawl in which the Indiana Pacers tussled with the Pistons and their fans." Happy times in the Motor City.

LeBron James: I can't find YouTube of this, strangely enough, but King Crab got his junk stuffed by Kwame Brown. Kwame Brown!

The Orlando Magic: Letting the Sixers shoot 52 percent for the game was bad enough, but check out this end-of-game defense on Thaddeus Young's game-winner:


First off, why were they playing chest-to-chest on that guy? He was 2-for-7 for the game and hadn't even attempted a three-pointer. The Magicians also seemed to forget that Young is a lefty. Bad stuff, man. And shouldn't the newly crowned Defensive Player of the Year be able to protect the rim in the closing seconds of a critical playoff game? Of course, Orlando would have been in a better position if they hadn't fallen behind by 17 points. Said Stan Van Gundy: "We were badly outplayed for 30 minutes. We're lucky to even be in the situation we're in. They had no trouble scoring on us and other than Dwight, we didn't do much offensively." No kidding. The Magic shot 42 percent from the field...and that number drops to 33 percent if you subtract Dwight Howard's 12-for-16 performance.

The Orlando Magic broadcasters: From Basketbawful reader Rahul: "Dude, you have to include this. It just happened. Commentator said: 'Tony DiLeo is not happy with the penetration he is getting right now.' I am ok with the increased access nowdays the media has, but this is just too much information."

The Portland Trail Blazers: Yao Ming finished with more turnovers (3) than field goals (2) and scored only 7 points...but the Blazers still lost 86-83 to fall behind two games to one in their best-of-seven series with the Rockets. Their big guns seemed to be shooting with blinders on, as Brandon Roy (who was harassed relentlessly by Ron Artest and Shane Battier) went 6-for-18, LaMarcus Aldridge was 6-for-15 and Travis Outlaw finished 2-for-11. If it wasn't for the nine three-pointers they got out of Rudy Fernandez and Steve Blake, Portland probably would have been blown out.

Yao Ming: The Blazers have poked a few bricks out of the Great Wall, reducing the nine-foot giant to the third or fourth-best player on the team. Said Yao: "Tough for me. Almost like a sandwich." Mmmm. Yao sandwich. Just, uh, hold the mayo, okay?

Adam Morrison versus Sasha Vujacic: Even the 'Stache hates Douchacic. Seriously:

During Lakers' practice on Friday, Adam Morrison and Sasha Vujacic shoved one another with Morrison threatening over and over, "you grab my shirt one more time..."

"You should have seen it when I used to go at it with Shaq," Kobe Bryant said afterward.

Phil Jackson found the Morrison-Vujacic altercation amusing, according to witness Frank Isola.
Saturday lacktivity report: Chris continues to prove that the playoffs really aren't complete without lacktion.

Cavs-Pistons: As the Pistons are starting to look as devastated as an average neighborhood on Woodward Avenue, the Crabs' Sasha Pavlovic was given the opportunity to claw onto a Power Pad for an 18 second Mario!

Magic-Sixers: Marcin Gortat spent 3:26 firmly in the penalty, fouling twice for a +2 suck differential that also notched up a 2:0 Voskuhl.

Blazers-Rockets: Portland's Nicolas Batum just posted the longest postseason stint of pure non-contributory lacktion so far with a 10:16 run as starting forward that provided a mere brick from downtown for a +1.
Saturday-001

Denver versus New Orleans: Talk about your hack-a-paloozas. At one point, I felt like I was watching a Heat-Knicks game from the late-90s. The officials called 58 personal fouls -- 29 on each team -- and four players fouled out (David West and Tyson Chandler for New Orleans, and Nene and Kenyon Martin for Denver). But Chris Paul didn't seem to mind getting pounded like a B-list porn star: "This is the fun part of the playoffs, all the contact, all the flagrant fouls. You never want anyone to get hurt, but after it's all said and done, you smile about it because that's the nature of the sport."

Byron Scott, bitch and moan machine: James Posey got tagged with a well-deserved flagrant on Chris Andersen. Posey didn't go for the ball, and he gave the Birdman's arm a strong tug of the "I'm gonna see if I can get away with throwing you to the floor" variety after the whistle. And after the game, Scott was all up in arms about the call: "It was a terrible call. Chauncey Billups' (flagrant) foul on Rasual (Butler), if it would have been James Posey, they probably would have thrown him out of the game. Posey didn't do anything. He tried to hold (Andersen) up on the foul. It was a good hard foul, but to get a flagrant on the foul, you have to almost throw the guy down as well. It was a terrible call." Since I'm fairly certain Byron hasn't suffered a head injury any time recently, I'll go ahead and assume he didn't see the tape. I mean, if he wants to argue that the league has been totally wussified, I'd agree with that. But that call was pretty consistent with the pansy way David Stern wants his league run.

Playoff intensity: Thanks to Basketbawful reader gpq for sending in this pic. Talk about "Guys who don't look like they should be in the NBA"...

Iknowsomebodyalreadysentyouthisbutwhatever

The San Antonio Spurs: They held the Mavs to 38 percent shooting. Tony Parker scored 43 points on 18-for-29 shooting. Tim Duncan almost had a triple-double (25 points, 10 rebounds, 7 assists). And they still lost. Blame the 12 missed free throws -- including seven bonks by Duncan -- and the fact that the bench combined to shoot 4-for-14. The Spurs are just running on empty right now. When the starters not named "Duncan" or "Parker" shoot 2-for-14 your reserves finish with more fouls (14) than points (10), you know you're in serious trouble. As Tony Parker put it: "They have a lot more weapons than us." Sing along with me kids: "It's the end of the Spurs as we know them..."

In addition to all that drek, Basketbawful reader Mike T. was wagging his finger at San Antonio's clutch-time execution:

I know that the Spurs have already cemented their place in Worst of the Weekend after their second straight face plant in Dallas, but I would like to nominate them specifically for their end-of-game decision making. Down by 5 with 3:30 left in the game, the Spurs proceeded to go 1-for-8 from the field. I can live with 1-for-8 if they are getting decent shots that just aren't going in, but included in their 1-for-8 shooting was 1-for-8 from the three-point line. That's correct. In the last 3:30 of a 5-point game (that remained a 5-point game until the very end), the Spurs took eight three-pointers and zero two-pointers (to go along with zero free throws).

And these were not wide open attempts that the Mavs were giving the Spurs. The Spurs took hand in the face 3's to the point that on one possession Tim Duncan was wide open under the basket TWICE on one play and Matt Bonner missed him the first time so that Michael Finley could force a contested 25 footer the second time. Tim Duncan even broke out a new version of the Tim Duncan face on the play to express his disgust. To top it all off, coming out of a timeout the Spurs ran a set play for Bonner to shoot a contested 3 from the left corner, which is his worst place outside of the arch according to NBA.com Hot Spots.

I thought 900 games of combined playoff experience was supposed to give the Spurs some kind of mental advantage.
The Atlanta Hawks: I'm really biting my tongue right now. The last thing I want to do is stat curse the Heat. So I'm going to hold back the "I told ya so’s" until after the Hawks are actually eliminated. But their 107-78 loss in Miami felt pretty damning, didn't it? The Dirty Birds scored 29 points in the first half and finished with almost as many blocked shots against (12) as assists (13). They also got battered on the boards (48-35) and shot a miserable 36 percent. AND they continue to make Jermaine "The Drain" O'Neal (22 points, 10 boards, 3 blocks) look like an All-Star center. I'm not saying Atlanta can't win this series, but can we all just agree that they aren't this great team everybody was making them out to be after those two long home stands they had this season?

The Miami Heat bench: You'd think the would have played great in such a terrible blowout...but they did not, putting up 5-for-22 group effort.

Al Horford, quote machine: The man-child getting abused by The Drain said: "No more excuses. We're going to have to bring it fuego on Monday." BRING IT FUEGO, BABY!

The Utah Jazz: Turns out their Game 3 victory was more of a lucky break than a series-changing turnaround. The Lakers bounced back from a sloppy, listless effort to set the Jazz up for a Game 5 knockout by beating them 108-94 in Utah. L.A. scored 40 points in the second quarter and then held the Jazz to 16 points in the third take total control of the game and the series. Utah got double-doubles out of Deron Williams (23 points, 13 assists) and Carlos Boozer (23 points, 16 boards), but they couldn't stop the Lakers (51 percent shooting) or hit their free throws (22-for-32). Now the only drama left in this first-round matchup is how quickly the Jazz will go down in the fifth and final game.

Deron Williams, hope springs eternal machine: After his team got its collective ass handed to it on Saturday, Deron said: "The series is not over. We've still got a little hope. We know it's going to be tough to win 3 in a row against these guys, but we should be playing free and loose." That's like telling the hangman's noose "This isn't over yet...my neck isn't broken and I can still sorta breath..."

Saturday lacktivity report: Chris brings you a super-lacktive Saturday...and a special announcement.

We're starting to see a postseason dominated by that elusive but critical element every championship team has had - lacktion. So all four of Saturday's games got love in the lacktion report:

Nuggets-Hornets: Despite a field goal and three boards in 17:43, Tyson Chandler fouled out and gave up the rock twice to fry up a Voskuhl of 8:5!

Spurs-Mavs: Matt Bonner rocketed his way to mediocrity this afternoon with a 21:55 stint so bawful, only one board away from a seemingly unprecedented +9 suck differential. That board however did not negate his bad play enough to avoid his second Voskuhl of the postseason, a ratio of 5:1 via four fouls, one turnover, and four bricks (three pieces of masonry from downtown). Bonner's non-performance also so far has set the mark for the lengthiest bawful big man showing in these playoffs.

James Singleton has now lacked it up in 3 of 4 playoff games so far for Mark Cuban's squad, this time running in place with the Speedboard NES accessory for a NINE SECOND SUPER MARIO - the second tribute to the Mushroom Kingdom that Mr. Singleton has procured this round!!!!

Heat-Hawks: THE Mario West got a second opportunity in a row to lack it up and contributed so little for so long that a Wii memory card wasn't enough to hold it all. His 3.6 trillion required the assistance of a financial broker or two!

Lakers-Jazz: Josh Powell turned on his Konami LaserScope for 20 seconds and fired off a Mario in his second straight lacktive game! Matching Powell's consecutive games of non-contribution streak was Utah's Brevin Knight, who crowned himself the court jester via two bricks and two fouls for a +4 in 2:18, the second-highest suck differential in the postseason so far.

And Andrew Bynum continues to pay tribute to the leader of Toronto's Little Three of Lacktivity, with his second straight Voskuhl (a 4:3 ratio this time around) via two fouls and two giveaways against a field goal and board in 6:57.
Sunday-001

The Chicago Bulls free throw shooting: As I noted at By the Horns, I was ready to dub this baby "The Free Throw Game." As in, "Missed free throws cost the Bulls the chance to tie this series at two games a piece." It wasn't just the nine misses (26-for-35). It was when some of those misses occurred. You know, at the worst possible times. First, Tyrus Thomas shanked a foul shot with 16 seconds left in regulation that could have given the Bulls a four-point cushion. Ray Allen responded by drilling a cold-blooded three-pointer to force overtime. Then, with 26 ticks left in the first overtime, Kirk Hinrich blew a freebie that could have tied the game at 107. After Paul Pierce pushed Boston’s lead to 108-106 (although he too missed a free throw), Ben Gordon got the whistle but was able to hit only one of two at the stripe, thereby failing to tie the game with nine seconds to go in that first OT. Joakim Noah had to foul Allen, who knocked down both of his foul shots to give the Celtics a 110-107 lead.

The Bulls got redeemed by Ben Gordon's crazy-ass shot, but if they'd lost, it would have been on the free throw shooting. Oh, that and...

Chicago's end-of-game defense: Basketbawful reader KC Deco writes: "WotW honors goes to Chicago. As the old cliche goes, 'the most dangerous guy is the guy in-bounding the ball.' Especially if that guy is Ray Allen, who killed the Bulls in Game 2. So nice job by the Bulls on the defensive fail that let Ray Allen get wide open to tie the game with a three with less than 10 seconds to go. I mean, the second that went up, was there a single person watching that did not say 'that's in?'"

Ben Gordon: More from KC: "Oh, and Ben Gordon grabbing his crotch after his big three in the first OT? That's just gross. It was like he was trying to do the 'big balls' dance, but was aware of the curse, so he went for something less subtle. It worked, though, so more power to him." Maybe he just...had an itch...down there? Yeah. I'm sure that's it.

The Boston Celtics: Bad day for the C's. They shot poorly (42 percent), committed 21 turnovers, gave up 24 points off those turnovers, got next to nothing out of their "bench," and their Suns-like defense allowed 121 points. In fact, every single Chicago player that got into the game scored in double figures. Every. Single. One. But Boston still had a chance to pull out the victory, and they might have, if they would have committed a foul before Air Gordon got off his game-tying three-pointer. That would have forced Chicago to shoot two free throws and then immediately foul. But even though Doc Rivers said that was the gameplan, Gordon was allowed to hit that bomb...and the rest is history. Based on the outcome, it's likely that turning the final 10 seconds into a foul shooting contest probably would have been a better idea than playing Gordon roulette.

Derrick Rose: He played great (23 points, 11 rebounds, 9 assists), BUT...he had his second straight 7-turnover game. That hurts.

The Detroit Pistons: And thus ends Detroit's woeful 2008-09 campaign, with a 99-78 home loss and a 4-0 first-round playoff sweep by a team they once mocked. But hey, this was all part of Joe Dumars plan! This summer, Joe has $20 million in cap space to rebuild this team immediately. They could be a contender again as soon as next season! Right...?!


Update! Allen Iverson: Totally ripped by ABC Sports (from NBA Fanhouse via Ar). The Not Answer has officially hit rock bottom and started to dig.

The Not Answer

Update! Rasheed Wallace: This is for david's benefit. In 'Sheed's final game as a Piston, he went scoreless on 0-for-7 shooting and finished with nearly as many fouls (4) as rebounds (5). It's almost like 'Sheed's heart was included in the Iverson trade, only nobody every told us.

The Pistons' "home court advantage": Didn't it seem like half their crowd was pro-Crabs? It sure did to me...and the Associated Press: "When James joined his teammates for warmups before Game 4, Cleveland fans seemed to outnumber Detroit supporters and he waved his arms in the air to encourage them to be even louder. 'It's great to be in Cleveland,' Cavs radio broadcaster Joe Tait joked."

The Philadelphia 76ers: They needed only 10 seconds worth of defense to put the Magic in a 3-1 series stranglehold. But they didn't get it.


Does Philly emply scouts? Did anybody watching that game think The Turkish Assassin was going to do anything BUT launch a three? I mean, seriously.

The Portland Trail Blazers: They're the West's best chance of stopping the Lakers, right? Yeah. Well, I guess the folks in Cleveland better start practicing their "Beat L.A.! Beat L.A.!" chants.

Ron Artest: Let's see...12 points on 20 shots. That's some serious efficiency. But that didn't stop him from grandstanding. The only thing missing was Rick Derringer singing "Real American."

Yeeeeeah booooooy

Tracy McGrady: Could any player look (and probably feel) any more anguished than Knee-Mac did while watching his team take a commanding 3-1 series lead in their first-round series? I wonder if, should the Rockets actually win this series, Rick Adelman will let Tracy suit up and just walk onto the court for the final seconds of the deciding game just so he can say he finally made it out of the first round. That would probably be the one and only example of first-round piggybacking in NBA history...and I would love it.

It freaking figures

Prime time announcers: Stephanie G. pointed out this was a rough weekend for some of our favorite announcing dart boards:

During the half time show of game 3 of the New Orleans-Denver series Avery Johnson had extreme difficulty pronouncing Sasha Vujacic's name. Sasha Vuyaches? Eh, close enough. It also sounded like he kept saying Lamar Oden.

In the first quarter of San Antonio-Dallas Game 4 Reggie Miller was reviewing why the Spurs got blown out in game 3 and was lamenting that Tony Parker wasn't "attacking the basketball" like he was to start the series.

As a woman I'm embarrassed by Doris Burke and I demand she apologize for causing ugly waves of women hating across basketball forums for her shallow commentary, grating voice, and the fact that she is essentially a female Mark Jackson who, like her counterpart, sounds like she wants to bed Kobe Bryant. She even used his lines at one point (momma, there goes that man!). To cap off an already bad game she somehow confused Bryon Russell with Craig Ehlo in a completely butchered attempt to compare a Kobe shot to MJ's last shot as a Bull. Besides being needless and insulting the shots were nothing alike. Also, if she could stop trying to sound hip by using '80s lingo ("he shot it right in his grill") I would be much appreciative.
Sunday lacktivity report: Chris brings a weekend of intense lacktivity to a close:

Celtics-Bulls: Two teams with storied championship histories know the importance of lacktion to a successful run to the top - even in a double-overtime special where contribution is dangerously easy! Boston's Tony Allen once again graces these paragraphs with a giveaway for a +1 suck differential in 3:07 - his third lacktive appearance this postseason, and the first two-time sucker so far - while Lindsey Hunter pointed the Laserscope briefly at the jumbotron for a 15 second Mario.

Cavs-Pistons: The team from Auburn Hills saw its hopes and dreams crushed by the Crabs' claws this afternoon, and Walter Herrmann finished up his postseason with a +2 via bricks in 6:28. Dishonorable mention has to go out to Rasheed Wallace, who narrowly avoided a Voskuhl in a four-foul, one-turnover and seven-brick showing by getting five non-game-changing boards.

In celebration, Mike Brown had a seafood trio of Sasha Pavlovic, Darnell "Lacktion" Jackson, and Tarence Kinsey storm the court for 2:07; however, only Mr. Jackson successfully executed non-contributory play with a +2 via brick and rejection, making it three games and counting living up to his moniker.

Magic-Sixers: Mareese Speights laid some sweet rhythm on the Donkey Kong Bongos for a 22 second Mario.

Blazers-Rockets: Greg Oden's attempts to "guard" Yao Ming have left him firmly in a rocking chair, as despite three boards in 10:46, he also bricked and gave up the rock once each and committed five fouls for a 6:3 Voskuhl. Meanwhile, Oden's much younger teammate Channing Frye bricked twice in 2:47 for a +2.

Clutch the Bear watched his charges take a firm grip on this first round series, with Chucky Hayes logging in an adorable +1 via foul in 4:05, his second lacktive stint this postseason.

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49 Comments:
Anonymous Dan B. said...
Well, I see that Jayson Williams is in the news again. Unfortunately. Seriously, what a trainwreck.

Lucky me, I wasn't able to be near a TV for most of the Bulls/Celtics game and got to miss out on all that excitement. I did get to see other meaningless one-sided series games however!!! Ugh. At least I got to witness the most predictable three-pointer in awhile from Turkoglu. So I've got that going for me. Which is nice.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
wohooo

+1%

WE BELIEVE

Blogger david said...
I can't believe Sheed doesn't get a mention for his 0 points in the Pistons' Game 4 elimination. Fail.

Blogger Lord Kerrance said...
Can we get a WotN for the Mavs' Ryan Hollins on Saturday night? He played 19 minutes off the bench and helped curtail (if not contain) Tim Duncan late in the game and even managed to posterize ol' Googly Eyes late in the 4th to put the Mavs up by 6. Of course, Hollis had to follow the Dallas tradition of self-destructing in the playoffs and promptly got T'd for taunting Timmy after the dunk.

Blogger Ar said...
Don't know if this was mentioned yet, but check out what the ABC did during the Cav's game 4 sweep of the Pistons:

http://nba.fanhouse.com/2009/04/26/abc-sports-dogs-allen-iverson/

At least AI wins in the turnovers category lol...

Blogger Austen said...
Being a little harsh on Williams, aren't you? D-Will's the Captain of the Jazz, so what exactly is he supposed to say when his team is up against the wall? Just give it up and tell his entire team that they have no chance?

Anonymous hellshocked said...
Anyone else think McGrady will try and pull the same stat curse he did in 2002-2003 when his Magic were up 3-1 on the Pistons, but this time fully conscious of what he's doing?

Anonymous Anonymous said...
PEOPLE!?!

Where is the bawful picture of Ben Gordon grabbing his crotch? The big balls dance just took on a new meaning!

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
ABC, amazing.

I don't think I'll watch tonight's game if they do bring it Fuego against the Aston Martin known as Wade.

Also, Bawful's up 52-48. No registration, just click click! change.gov we can believe in!

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Is Cleveland gonna cruise to the NBA Finals with Boston and Orlando flailing the way they are? Does Miami represent the best chance a team has of upsetting or even pushing the Cavs in the East this year? Orlando is like the Blazers in that they're too reliant on outside shooting, and Boston... I dunno what Boston's problem is. Maybe the Bulls are just good sometimes (Game 3 not being one of those times), but I don't see how the Celtics or Magic can give the Crabs much of a battle if they're both having this much trouble with their first round opponents.

TNT had a pretty funny dig at Sheed last night as they showed him in the locker room just getting up after he was dressed and walking out without really saying anything, as they said "Come on Sheed, can't we even get a 'one team played hard.'?" Classic :)

I can't wait for Mr. Bawful's full wrath upon the Atlanta faithful after the Hawks inevitably lose this series.

I knew that Hornets-Nuggets series was gonna get ugly, I can't wait to see what's next. That thing's gonna be over in 5 though, but the Nuggets better be careful or there's gonna be a brawl and/or suspensions which will hurt them in the next round against Dallas. Speaking of Dallas, I think we'll see one last gasp from the Spurs in Game 5, but that's gonna be over in 6. I've said it before here though, but the Spurs might be back next year if they get Manu and Duncan healthy and they make some wise pickups in the summer.

I think Jerry Sloan should have pulled his starters at some point in Game 4, especially Boozer. Maybe he was being proud, but that was very likely the last home game for the Jazz this year, and was quite likely Boozer's last home game in a Jazz uniform. I know Utah made a small run to cut it from 24 to 13, but that was when there was about a minute or so remaining and Utah just ran out of time (the late run also looked like it was a little bit due to disinterest from the Lakers). I know Utah's hoping for a return in Game 6, but be realistic.

Portland, Portland, Portland... Looks like even Abbott is now willing to admit that maybe playoff experience does count for something. Gee, ya think? My guess is Portland wins Game 5 by virtue of being at home, but they ultimately lose in 6. The TNT guys were right on last night in talking about how Portland has no low post game and rely too much on jump shooters, then at the end of the game are overly reliant on Brandon Roy making them predictable in how to defend against them. Houston is really not very good (at least not when Artest puts on an offensive display like that - offensive to Rockets fans anyway), but Portland just doesn't have enough experience, doesn't have any kind of interior game when Roy isn't driving, and doesn't play enough defense to succeed this year. They're gonna be better in the future, no doubt, and this bit of seasoning will help, but sooner or later they're gonna need Greg Oden to step up offensively for them to really be a title contender; and that's never gonna happen as long as Oden keeps committing the most moronic fouls I've ever seen. Someone needs to tell Oden that especially when he's playing against a big pivot like Yao, he needs to save his fouls for when he's guarding in the post. Fouling guys on the perimeter is just plain idiotic when you're his size.

Anonymous James said...
Haha yes! Finally you included a Doris Burke mention .. she is the worst basketball commentator I have ever heard in my life. She needs to get back in the kitchen ASAP because she has no clue what she's talking about.

Anonymous AK Dave said...
I know Sean Marks looks like my crazy Uncle Rob and all, but believe it or not- HE was the first guy for NO who stepped up and played with some cojones after getting kicked in the stomach in the first 8min or so of game 3. His nasty two-handed thunder-slamma-jamma got his team to their feet and the Hornets played with confidence and fire from that point on. I guess it was his "Steve Kerr moment".

I figured Miami would be tough in their series because while their team is thin, they have a bona fide mega-super-duperstar and the Hawks don't. That matters.

The fact that the Spurs lost again is exhibit Q in the case for why Ginobili is so damn important for that team. Look, TP is flashy and makes great moves and scores in bunches and racks up stats, but he can't create for his teammates like Manu, and he can't get clutch rebounds like Manu, and he doesn't have the size and physical gifts that Manu does. MG is a prototypical 6-6 shooting guard who can run the point and whateverelseyouwanthimtodo. I feel like he has never gotten his due on that team- I contend he was the Finals MVP in 2005, hands down. People slob all over TP's knob in the media and such, but for the first time in the playoffs, MG is out, and they're getting tooled in the first round. Coincidence? I think not.

And don't get me started on Ginobili's "intangibles". Awesome floptitude, an outrageous bald spot, his being left-handed....

As for the Bulls- people still think they have no chance of winning their series. WTF. What do they have to do before people realize they are a good team? I feel like that 3-pointer from BG to send it to another OT might prove to be a series-changing shot. I half-jokingly said "Bulls in 6" before the series began, but now I'm starting to believe. The Bulls aren't scurred of the Celtics, and game 5 is going to be very exciting...

Anonymous AK Dave said...
I kinda like Doris Burke.

Anonymous DKH said...
Regarding Ray Allen's big 3-pointer at the end of regulation against the Bulls:

Is that not a moving screen by Davis? I mean, I guess if Noah is always in the face of your shooters as they're taking the final shot, that's one way to take him out of the play. But I'm not sure I know the moving screen rules that well.

Youtube video of the play:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5O92W7x2zQ

Blogger Andrei said...
Yams, I suppose that there is such a thing as playoff experience. It appears that McMillan needs it as a coach as much or more so than his players. I simply do not understand why he refuses to change his line-up to create more favorable match-ups. Portland's issue (other than allowing too many offensive rebounds) is their ability to score against Houston. It's not like Houston is racking up huge scoring totals, Portland is playing enough D and allowing Ron-Ron to shoot enough that they're not getting blown out. The Blazers simply need to increase their scoring output to improve their chances of winning. However, every game McMillan trots out a starting line-up where only 2.5 of the 5 players can score. The most success they've had is with Pryzbilla/Oden, Aldridge, Outlaw, Fernandez and Roy on the floor. They made a big run on Houston at the end of the 3rd quarter in game 4 with that line-up yet they got no time together in the 4th. The jump-shooting label is right on as well. When Houston has Chuck Hayes or Carl Landry at the 5 and the Blazers are firing away from the outside I want to gouge my eyes out. Why not go to the hoop? Why not try to post-up Aldridge or Outlaw on their smaller defenders? Kyle Lowry was checking Outlaw for part of the game for God's sake. The final point I have about that series is that Aldridge and Roy both need to speed up their decision making. When either gets the ball they spend way too much time "looking over the defense" and as a result getting double teamed.

I was also wondering if anyone else is finding the Bulls-Celtics series to be on the brink of unwatchable. I mean it's no Orlando-Philly, but the constant blunders committed by both teams are cheapening the clutch shot-making for me. For example, why was Tyrus Thomas shooting free throws at the end of regulation yesterday and not giving up the ball? Also, John "My Groin!" Salmons was supposed to guard Ray Allen on the shot that tied the game in regulation. However, he decided to drop off to check Rajon Rondo even though Rondo isn't really known as a three point shooter and if he scored a two pointer the Bulls would still be up a point with even less time remaining in the game. This combined with Vinny's coaching and Pierce's suckitude, is making the series much less interesting than it's been made in the media. Although I suppose every other series sucks even worse.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
James: Yay for good ol' fashioned not-clever misogyny.

AK Dave: #2 Google search result. But I'm sure you're already well read on her WNBA blog.

Bawful's up 54-46, yay Internet democracy!

Blogger Andrei said...
AK Dave, I will counter your prediction of Bulls in 6 with the following: http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/playoffs/2009/news/story?id=4104307

Anonymous Czernobog said...
I asked this over at by the horns - Was Derrick Rose really as quiet in OT as the numbers indicate? 0 points on something like 2 shots? If so that probably deserves a mention.

Anonymous AK Dave said...
AnacondaHL: not sure whether that WNBA site thing was a backhanded remark or not, nevertheless, only having heard her voice a handful of times and never looking at her picture before following your link, I find Doris' commentary to be above-average. All color commentators point out the obvious (Kobe is SO COMPETITIVE!! Sean Marks WORKS SO HARD!!), but I find her voice agreeable and I'd rather listen to her than Hubie Brown or JVG.

Just my opinion, man. (/the dude)

WV: jelli

Where to begin...

Anonymous AK Dave said...
Andrei-

Yeah I saw that. That will hurt, but Rose can pick up his slack. Tim Thomas (gulp) will have to play some minutes too, but Kirk has played quite well recently and Rose has deferred to Gordon but does not need to. If Gordon can give them just a normal, pedestrian, 15pts or so in limited shots (10 or fewer), they'll be OK.

If he's out entirely... well, shit.

Anonymous StottsEra said...
Whats wrong with the billups/iverson comparison? at least the Not Answer has less turnovers

Anonymous DKH said...
Andrei:

Regarding Salmons defense in the closing seconds, maybe the Bulls were in a switch on all screens mode? Salmons seems to switch pretty smoothly; it's the other players that don't handle it well. Particularly the other guard that gets lost deep behind Davis (Derek Rose, I suppose).

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Andrei - I really think the key to Portland's future is going to be either that Greg Oden needs to develop a post game (and learns how to play without fouling), or the Blazers are going to need to find themselves a low-post scorer. What you mention about Portland not having enough offense on the floor is in large part due to the fact that neither Oden nor Pryzbilla can be counted on for offense at all (except for putbacks and dunks), and as such it really limits who the Blazers can focus on to score, while simultaneously allowing Houston to just focus on the few guys who are a threat (i.e. Roy).

I think Aldridge needs to probably spend some time working on his post game as well. It's long been a pet peeve of mine to see guys like him (or Amare Stoudemire or Rasheed Wallace or Chris Webber before them) who should be a very difficult cover down low make things easy on the defense by instead falling in love with perimeter jumpers. I think it's important for a power forward to have that perimeter jumper in their arsenal, but they need to make sure they also can post people up on a regular basis. That's why Tim Duncan has long been such a tough cover: because he can punish people in the post like a center, but is almost automatic from 18-20 feet out if you leave him alone (and he can hit it from the top of the key or from the wings just as well).

Blogger BadDave said...
Hey Doris! Why the long face?

Anonymous Axel Foley said...
"I want what they want...and every other guy who came over here, and voted and gave everything he had once. For Basketbawful to love us as much as we love it."

-John Rambo, Fellow American, Basketbawful supporter, and real man

We're down 54 -46! Vote it! Im running out of speeches here!

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Since it isn´t mentioned here, please bawful watch the "Inside the NBA (TNT OT)" on the NBA website. When they are reviewing the Magic-76'rs game, one of the commentators drops a huge dirty machine qoute. It happends around the 9 minute mark.

Anonymous SomeoneStoleMyCheetos said...
Suprised no one pointed out or called out Stan Van Ron Jeremy for some horrible playcalling at the end of the PHI-ORL game Sunday.

Yes, everyone knew Hedo was going to launch a 3 but WHY WAS THAT THE PLAY?! Was Charles Barkley in charge of Howard's movement with his PS3 controller? Because in a tie game, with 14 seconds left, I'm getting the ball to Superman II.

At worst, he's fouled and clanks both free throws - and the game goes to OT. Otherwise, he dunks and you win. There wasn't even any MOVEMENT by the other ORL players. Guarantee you that if that's the play at the end of a Magicians-Crabs or Magicians - "Celtics" (in quotes because I want to know who the body-snatchers were) that shot isn't even happening.

Van Gundy's end of game plan reminds me of when I played NBA 2K7 as the Crabs and my go to play was an LBJ iso - which worked 80% of the time. So it's not a bad play - if that guy is LEBRON 'THE HUMAN VIDEOGAME' JAMES.... but the Turkish Assassin?

Anonymous Anonymous said...
I found a link for Ben Gordon and the big balls dance

http://outsports.com/jocktalkblog/2009/04/26/ben-gordon-hits-a-3-grabs-a-bulge/

I'm not sure a lot of pre-thought went into it!

Blogger Wild Yams said...
Was anyone watching the post-game interview with Kobe right after the Lakers won Game 4? I'm talking about the one with Nancy Lieberman before Kobe left the court, not the one at the podium. I don't know if it happened everywhere, but where I was watching it, apparently the director was asleep at the wheel, cause in the middle of the interview they cut to a shot in the press room (which was empty as the game had just ended), and the camera must have been sitting on the floor cause it was so low. You could still hear Kobe talking, but for a good 30 seconds or so it was just this weird shot, and at one point a guy with headphones on leaned down on the floor and waved to the camera. It was pretty classic. I've tried to find a clip of it online but have had no success :(

Anonymous AK Dave said...
We're down 47%-53%

Axel Foley: you've inspired me by using one of the most awesome end-of-movie quotes of ALL TIME. (Narrowly beating out "If I can change, and you can change, EVERYBODY can change!" but losing in a landslide to "Hey everyone, we're all gonna get LAID!!!")

Yams: I saw that too- lols

I'm hoping that if BG could nail that shot; it means that his hammy isn't THAT bad. Anyway I'm giving a +1 to "crotchgrabgate" because the Bulls won.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
HOLY SHIT THIS IS AWESOME!!!
i know theres some video game geeks on here thatll enjoy this. anyone remember the konami code?? enter it in at espn.com and ponies and rainbows and shit start popping up. SERIOUSLY. TRY IT OUT NAO!!!

http://kotaku.com/5230185/the-konami-code-makes-espncom-magical

Anonymous Anonymous said...
...i forgot to mention, the more u press enter the more things pop up

Blogger david said...
Thanks Bawful! I felt like more needed to be said than just the lacktion mention. I guess he just guaransheed he won't be playing in Detroit next season.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
awww...the konami code doesnt work anymore :(

Anonymous Anonymous said...
sorry for the multiple posts...
but if you wanna see the konami code thing in effect you can visit the google cached page for espn http://74.125.113.132/search?q=cache:ssdn4F46EEYJ:espn.go.com/+espn.com&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us
...and it still works there

Anonymous AK Dave said...
You know... I really didn't care about that Heat-Hawks series until I saw Al Horford talking about "brining it fuego". Now it's must-see. If he goes 1-10 with 5 blocks against then he should be right there with Devin Harris in competition for an annual worstie when that time comes around.

Traigalo FUEGO, Al Horford!! Dale pues!!

7:20 Mario West enters the game for Maurice Evans 8-

After Maurice Evans took two quickly fouls on the first quarter, here comes Mario West and the TNT crew (can't remember their names) labbeled him "a good defensive player".

Pretty bawful first quarter dominated by free throws and almost two consecutives air balls by Wade.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
"Clutch the Bear watched his charges take a firm grip on this first round series, with Chucky Hayes logging in an adorable +1 via foul in 4:05, his second lacktive stint this postseason."

----

You casually forgot to mention how Chuck Hayes was subbed in the final 10 seconds in Game 4 and drew the game winning charge on Brandon Roy.

I guess the Chuck Wagon isn't as useless as your stats suggest. Or maybe you haven't watched a single game in this fantastic series?

Blogger Shiv said...
http://www.nypost.com/seven/04272009/gossip/pagesix/kobe_bryant_called_shots_on_spike_lee_fi_166357.htm

Some worst of Kobe?

Anonymous ak dave said...
Well Horford flopped, but Zaza "I aint scurred of KG" Pachulia BROUGHT IT FUEGO with a MAN-type game of 18rebs and 12 points.

Horford didn't deliver (4pts 3 rebs, and -8), but Zaza bailed him out. Probably the only time I'll ever say that.

New Orleans: lol

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Can we have a WoTN for Bill Simmons? I had to listen him blab for years on how damn good Chris Paul is, will be one of the best PGs EVER, that he is SO MUCH better than Deron Williams. To make his "point", he compared their early stats, forgeting that Williams had just a few games, and was battling ankle injury.
Well, after last night's disaster (ok, I'll give that Paul is tired from a long season, in which he had to perform beyond expected, but he is facing an old man, as experts pointed before the series started), and scanning both playoff series, we can surely say that Simmons knows d##k!!!!!!
Hey, just for the record... I like to read Simmons, but some of his man-crushes pi$$ me off!!!!

Anonymous Anonymous said...
yup, Sean Marks played in even in the polish basketball league. Well, maybe not PLAYING literally cuz he was 2 weak back then, just warming up the bench mostly :]

Anonymous Sean said...
The Nuggets should get a WOTN mention for not beating the Hornets by more than 58. The way the Hornets played, and the effort they displayed, should have earned them at least a 72 point beat down. But at least now we know what the Hornets look like when Chris Paul isn't out there on the court, considering he obviously never made it to the gym.

Blogger Cortez said...
"Because in a tie game, with 14 seconds left, I'm getting the ball to Superman II."

Then after the (highly predictable) horrible shot that would most certainly occur, losing you the game, hopefully you'll wonder why didn't you get the ball to someone who can actually shoot or at the very least create a shot on his own.

Anonymous Ted (Knoxville, TN) said...
There was a grande starting lineups graphic fail during the Houston/Portland game on Sunday.

Ron Artest was playing for Portland and Brandon Roy for Houston!

I don't have video capture of this fail, maybe someone else does.

Anonymous Wormboy said...
Four first round impressions:
1) Sheed: the pain has been unbearable. What gets me more than anything is how he has been setting picks. He ambles into them. Seriously, the pick is so slow coming that the guy being picked can jog around Sheed every time. More than anything, those picks summarize what is wrong with Detroit (minus Iverson-Billups, of course, which is REALLY what is wrong with Detroit. Anybody wonder how Iverson's "I am the shit" attitude played out in the Detroit locker room this year?)

2) Pronouncing names
Exhibit A: OK, how much are Barkley and Kenny Smith being paid? They can't pronounce Barea's name correctly (they say "Barrera" every time)? I growled at the TV about it and my wife said "what makes you think YOU know how to pronounce it?" a) EJ says it correctly IN THE SAME DISCUSSION, b) so do all other announcers, c) it's freakin obvious. How can you squeeze two "R" phonemes out of a name that contains a single R?

Exhibit B: Jon Barry seems like a nice guy. He's moderately bright. But "Stojakovic" ends with "itch," not "ick." He's been around for over a decade, and all the other announcers get it right. It's not that damned hard, OK? A large chunk of the world has names spelled that way.

And we'll just let "Joakim" lie. I don't think I'll ever get accustomed to the tone-deafness of your average American to other languages.



3) It bugged me at the time, and I had a flashback watching the Heat last night. Dwyane Wade has appeared on a lot of "Sexiest man" lists, especially back in 2006. My response is: REALLY?!?!? Am I missing something? OK, pro athletes aren't selected by attractiveness, obviously. There are some seriously ugly and funny looking goons out there. So, Wade is easily in the 90th percentile. But one of the "top 100 sexiest men in the world?" The guy is actually a little funny looking. I can easily name 10 recognizable players, including Kobe, whom I hate, who are better looking than Wade. Was this some kind of bizarre media blitz? OK, I long ago stopped believing that the media had any connection to what real people thought. It's all about the money, right? But Wade being on lists like that just seems kind of off. He's an incredible talent, and by all accounts a good human being. I'd bet he has an amazing physique. But his face just ain't that attractive. Handsome, yes. Gorgeous? No way.

Anonymous Karc said...
Seriously, what's the deal with crazy women stalking Lakers players? First, it was Luke Walton, now it's Derek Fisher.

http://msn.foxsports.com/nba/story/9506492/Lakers%27-Fisher-seeking-restraining-order/?gt1=39002

Blogger Wild Yams said...
From the article about Fisher's stalker:

"Fisher claims that the woman has been showing up at his place of work and at his private residence."OK, showing up at his house is definitely a bad sign, but there are lots of people who routinely show up at his "place of work". They're called "season ticket holders" or possibly even just "basketball fans".

Blogger Cortez said...
"The guy is actually a little funny looking. I can easily name 10 recognizable players, including Kobe, whom I hate, who are better looking than Wade."

Now prepare yourself for the onslaught of "ewwww...you're gay!" commentary.

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