I spent most of the weekend sick as a dog. As a result, a quick hits version of WotW was the best I could do. Of course, even a quickie version was nearly 3,000 words before Chris's lacktion report. So...yeah.
The Boston Celtics: Okay, so, sure, Kevin Garnett got bonked on the head and Rajon Rondo went down with a leg injury...but losing at home to the Jeff Green-less AND Kevin Durant-less Thunder? THEN letting the Craptosaurs of all teams drop 38 second quarter points on them on the way to a 102-101 victory...Toronto's first win over Boston in nine tries? No wonder I was sick all weekend.
Perspective check: Dan B: "Funny how all the media talks about with Boston is Pierce/Garnett/Allen, yet as soon as they lose Rajon Rondo for a couple games, the team falls apart and loses to goddamn Toronto..."
Big Baby: This lost weekend started with that loss to the Thunder...a lost that might have been prevented if Baby had remembered to shoot toward the rim instead of away from it. You know, I can forgive the 2-for-10 shooting. I can. What I can't forgive are the four missed free throws in the fourth quarter, including three straight that would have tied the game in the closing minutes.
Time for KG to make him cry again.
Kevin Garnett, quote machine: "We can't just show up. We've got to play some D. These teams we're playing against are very high-caliber offense teams. We know what they are. On paper they might not be whatever but as far as talent, this league has a lot of talent and you've got to respect that."
Paul Pierce, quote machine: "I know we're a better team than those two teams, I know we are. It's just mentally coming out and having the right mindset. I don't think we have the right mindset coming into these games against opponents that we're supposed to beat."
"We may be the worst second quarter team in all of basketball. We come out, get these leads and then we give them right away in the second quarter. We've got to do a better job and be more consistent throughout the game, quarter by quarter."
Delonte West, unintentionally dirty quote machine: From Basketbawful reader Shiv: "I think my size bothered him."
The Toronto Craptors: They won three in a row but traded for Peja Stojakovic. Way to throw a big, wet, urine-soaked blanket on your fan base, Toronto management. I guess they've been missing Hedo Turkoglu so much they just had to deal for the next best/softest thing.
The Miami Heat: I don't know what the best part of Wade-less Miami's loss in Memphis was -- the fact that they lost to a sub-.500 Grizzlies squad or that Rudy Gay buried the game-winner over LeBron James and then gave the Heat bench the stink eye.
Said Gay (H/T Kaushal): "I don't care if James Naismith was guarding me, which would be scary because he's dead. I really don't care who's guarding me to be honest with you."
Perspective check: Zach Randolph and O.J. Mayo showed up late to the shootaround and got benched for the entire first quarter.
Another great, great moment in this game was when Zach Randolph -- one of the worst shot-blocking big men in league history, who has averaged 0.3 BPG over his career -- swatted King Crab's layp attempt with less than a minute left to play.
It was Z-Bo's second blocked shot of the year.
Said Zach: "I blocked LeBron. It's for me, one of the biggest plays of the game."
LeBron James, quote machine: And now a few words from the heir to the Vagisil fortune, courtesy of Basketbawful reader Aaron: "You don't want anything easy, especially as a professional athlete; nothing is easy. This wasn't something I thought was easy. ... I would rather it not be easy because you have to go through growing pains to be great at the end when you face those challenges you had early in the year. The easy button is not for us.”
And as Aaron pointed out, wasn't the whole point of colluding, er, I mean taking his talents to South Beach to kinda-sorta take the easy way out? I mean, why else team up with one of the best players in the league and another guy who's been posing as one of the best players in the league? It sure as hell isn't to make things harder.
If LeBron wanted challenges, he would have stayed in Cleveland. Just sayin'.
Gerald Wallace: He nearly turned heel on his own team. As Solieyu recounts:
Clutch three gametime seconds of lacktion by Wallace as the Bobcats try to come back on the Heat with a little over a minute to play according to the MSN play by play:
1:07 D Brown - Foul 1:07 C Bosh - Makes 2 Freebies 1:04 G Wallace - Foul 1:04 G Wallace - 6th Foul 1:04 G Wallace - 2nd Tech, ejected 1:04 L James - Freebie.
Yes, he got a tech AFTER fouling out.
The Milwaukee Bucks: Just when everybody was starting to talk about them getting their shit together, they went to Philly and lost to the 2-10 and still Andre Iguodala-less Sixers. 33 percent shooting. 0-for-12 from downtown. A 3-for-13 night from Brandon Jennings. And they gave up 23 fast break points.
Said Andy Bogut: "We can't make excuses. We just have to blame ourselves."
One night later, they were held to 37 percent shooting (3-for-18 from downtown) by the Jeff Green-less and Kevin Durant-less Thunder...losing by a point at home.
Said Scott Skiles: At really key moments when we need to make a play, we struggle to make it and sometimes actually made a bad play, sort of an errant pass or something like that that's hurt us."
The Dallas Mavericks: I thought the story of this game was gonna be Taj Gibson's inability to contain Dirk Nowitzki. Turns out the story was Dirk not being able to contain Taj. After going 1-for-16 in his previous two games, Gibs blew the hell up for 17 points (7-for-12) and a career-high 18 rebounds (8 offensive). And speaking of career firsts, how about his first ever three-pointer...right in Nowitizki's mug. It was the game-breaker.
The Mavs just got out-worked. Chicago outrebounded Dallas 59-34 -- including 20-9 on the offensive glass -- and outscored them 42-26 in the paint. And this was a home game for the Mavericks, by the way.
Jeff Van Gundy, creepy ass quote machine: From Basketbawful reader Greg: "'If I was Tom Thibodeau I'd be licking that blood off!' -- after Derrick Rose was removed due to a cut on his nose. Oooookaaay is all I can say."
The Houston Rockets: Fell to 3-9 after losing to the Craptors on Friday. Daryl Morey, what have you created?
The Minnesota Timberwolves: Eh, I expect 'em to lose to the Lakers, whether they're playing at home, on the moon, or even in a broom closet. But I had to bring up the loss for two reasons: Darko Milicic's career night (23 points, 10-for-18, 16 rebounds, 6 blocked shots, 5 assists, 2 steals) and Matt Barnes' perfect night (7-for-7 from the field, 5-for-5 from downtown, and 5-for-5 from the line for a team-high 24 points). Ah, what the hell, I'll also mention Kevin Love's 0-for-7 performance and Kobe Bryant's 8-for-27 brick-a-palooza.
In regards, to Darko's "Manna from Heaven" stat line: "ANYTHIIIIING IS POOOOSSSSIIIBBBLLLLLEEEE!!!!!"
Except for that ever happening again.
The New Jersey Nyets: Well, if the Purple Paupers were gonna break their six-game skid, it would be against the Nyets, right?
Said Beno Udrih: "There was a lot of pressure on us, especially playing really bad on our home court. Now we have that taste of winning again."
Ugh. What does the "taste of winning" against the Nyets taste like? Bet it tastes like ass.
The Gol_en State Warriors, Part 1: To those of you who have been fooled into thinking that this is a different Warriors team because they've clubbed some ugly squads in the early going, I submit this homecourt loss to the Bricks who scored 125 points on a season-best 57 percent shooting as Raymond Felton -- yes, that Raymond Felton -- went apeshit with 35 points on 13-for-17 shooting and 11 assists.
And for some bonus hilarity, here's video (via stephanie g) of Amar''''''e swatting the ball onto the stop of the shot clock. Where it stayed. Until halftime. For the record, if you've ever wondered why STAT doesn't play defense, it's because stuff like THIS happens when he does.
Mike D'Antoni, quote machine: "It's nerve-racking because we haven't won [here] in 58,000 years."
Keith Smart, quote machine: "Monta is playing like our superstar. Is he a superstar in the minds of everyone else? We've got to get somebody else on our team -- two, three, one guy -- to get to his level or halfway to his level."
The Phoenix Suns: In the words of Patches O'Houlihan, watching the Suns play without Steve Nash like watching a bunch of retards trying to hump a doorknob out there. I think I could eat a picture of Bill Russell and shit out a better defensive effort than they put up against the Bobcats. Stephen Jackson had the first triple-double in Bobcats history with 24/10/10. It was the second TD of Jackson's career...with the first coming against the Suns on February 4, 2009.
Gak Alert: Since beating the Lakers in L.A., the Suns have lost three in a row by 61 points.
Said Alvin Gentry: "We didn't guard anyone. We let a team that's averaging 93 [points] put up 123, and they were nice about it. They should have gotten 140. This isn't about Steve, guys. We had 12 guys out there and didn't play with any kind of effort. It was a layup drill in the third quarter."
The Atlanta Hawks: After losing to the Mavericks at home on Saturday night, the Hawks have dropped to 2-5 since their vaunted 6-0 start to the season. They're 3-4 in Atlanta and can't seem to beat good teams. At this point, if you tried to order Hawks merchandise online, you'd probably get a fraud alert from your credit card company.
Said Joe Johnson: "We didn't come out with the energy we needed." Speaking of Joe...
Joe Johnson: After his 4-for-14 effort against the Mavs -- including 1-for-6 shooting from beyond the arc -- he's hitting only 34 percent of his shots over the last three games. On the season, he's hitting 42 percent of his shots (his lowest percentage since 2002-03) and a career-low 25 percent on threes.
$119 million dollars...five more years after this one...
The Portland Frail Blazers: Look, we all know about Portland's injury woes. But injuries are not why C.J. Miles went off for 17 points in the fourth quarter and hit a career-high seven three-pointers. That's daring a guy to beat you with his shooting.
Said Miles: "[The basket] looked as big as me throwing a rock in a lake. Only once or twice since I have been in the NBA have I been able to shoot the ball and just start backpedaling. That's how I felt in the second half."
Knicks-Clippers: The Clips get a nod here for falling to 1-13 on the season after letting the Bricks drop 124 points on them in L.A. Leave it to the fucking Clippers to score 115 points on 54 percent shooting at home and lose. Typical of The Other L.A. Team, they gave up 35 points off 20 turnovers.
New York gets a nod in this one for not only letting the Clippers blow up the scoreboard, but for getting repeatedly facialized by Blake Griffin (44 points, 15 rebounds, 7 assists). Griffin was feeding the Bricks the ball with such authori-tah that it was like somebody told him: If you dunk often and hard enough, YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE A CLIPPER ANYMORE. Well, sorry, Blake. You're still a Clippers.
Timofey Mozgov: Poor Timmy was on the wrong end of Blake's desire to escape the Clipper Kingdom. Sorry, Tim. Somebody's gotta be the "other guy" in the poster, you know?
Amar''''''e Stoudemire, credit-taking machine: "That was actually incredible. That was a play that definitely sparked the crowd and sparked us. We weren't expecting that. I've had a few of those in my career, so I can understand the feeling he's going through right now. I've been in those shoes before. I remember when Blake was in college and he attended my skills academy camp. I definitely saw a lot of me in him then. He's playing well for a rookie. This is his breakout game, and he's going to be very good."
Hornets-Kings: This 75-71 "thriller" almost made me start praying for a lockout. Any time a team misses 14 of its first 17 field goals, shoots 32 percent from the field and gets outrebounded but wins anyway, well, you know James Naismith must be rolling over in his grave. Or preparing to return from the beyond to guard Rudy Gay. One or the other.
Said New Orleans coach Monty Williams: "I don't think either one of us is going to send this tape to Springfield [the Basketball Hall of Fame] or any other field."
Here's what one anonymous reader wanted to happen to his/her eyes after watching this horror show:
Paul Westphal, coach of the year candidate: "We couldn't get shots when we needed to get them. It's a shame when you play as hard as effectively as we played tonight to not have a win to show for it."
So 38 percent shooting and 22 turnovers is "playing effectively," Paul?
The Gol_en State Warriors, Part 2: Memo to the Warriors: Just put a damn hand up already, will you? It doesn't even have to be in anybody's face. You can start slow. Get that hand up to waist level, maybe even chest level. You can do this. Just pretend it's a contract year or something and defense will earn you a Darko Milicic contract.
The Lakers scored 117 points on 56 percent shooting and built a 35-point lead before settling for a 28-point win. Pau Gasol (28 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists) joined Matt Barnes in The Perfect Club. After going 10-for-10 from the field and 8-for-8 from the line, Gasol became one of three players in league history (with Barnes and Charles Barkley) to finish with at least 20 points, five rebounds and five assists without missing on at least five shots from the field and the line.
Jesus. Who keeps track of this crap?
Said Pau: "Matt told me, 'Welcome to the club.' I said, 'Happy to be in there.' It's kind of weird that it happened that way. It's weird, but it's obviously a good sign. ... I didn't have to make five or six 3-pointers. My teammates were able to find me near the basket. I wasn't thinking about what Matt did. I was just converting."
Added Barnes: "He was playing against little midgets, though. That's not something you play for, but 10 for 10, 8 for 8, he topped me. It's amazing."
Meanwhile, Andris Biedrins was bemoaning L.A.'s length and girth: "You can block them out, but they're just tipping to each other, so it's really hard to get those rebounds. That was why we went down so many points, because we just couldn't get those rebounds, and they were tipping in, getting second chance points."
For the record, the Lakers finished with only three more total rebounds, while the Warriors outrebounded L.A. 23-14 on the offensive glass. I'm just sayin'.
Speaking of the Lakers, in their first 14 games, they've gotten to play the Rockets, Warriors (twice), Grizzlies, Kings, Raptors, Timberwolves (twice), Bucks and Pistons. That's 10 sub-.500 teams. I'm just sayin'.
The Washington Wizards Generals: Now that he's finally stopped trying to win the scoring title, Gilbert Arenas is playing some of the best basketball of his career. On Saturday, he led the John Wall-less Generals to a win. On Sunday, he scored 19 points to go with a career-high 16 assists as the Generals shot 54 percent...
...and lost an overtime decision to the Pistons in Detroit. Washington is now a perfect 0-6 on the road.
Said Pistons coach John Kuester: "Tracy [McGrady] came up with a play, and we got two huge 3-pointers out of it in the fourth quarter -- Will Bynum got one and Charlie got one. That's how you know you are coming together as a team -- when guys speak up in situations like that."
Huh. Must suck to be Generals coach Flip Saunders. He's apparently getting outcoached by Knee-Mac now. Ouchies.
The Pistons' in-game promotions: From the AP game notes: "The Pistons had to stop a promotion involving their mascot and a frozen turkey when the thawing bird dripped water in several parts of the floor."
Sucking in the NBA is one thing. But sucking in Turkey is...just...awesome.
Bonus bawful: An animated version of Tony Parker's divorce via Mike Mai:
Chris's Mega Combined Weekend Lacktivity Update:
Thunder-Celtics: Morris Peterson provided a foul in 5:08 for a +1 suck differential, while Boston's Luke Harangody also fouled once - but did so while turning on a Game Boy in 21 seconds for a Mario AND the same suck differential score!
Bucks-Sixers: Larry Sanders was one deer NOT to be feared tonight, fouling and bricking twice each in 9:23 for a +4.
Grizzlies-Generals: Lester Hudson swam near some plumbing implements in just 4 seconds for a Super Mario!
Bobcats-Heat: Matt Carroll collected a 3.8 trillion (3:49) for Michael Jordan, while Joel Anthony countered two boards in 6:49 with a brick, rejection, giveaway and two fouls for a 3:2 Voskuhl.
Lakers-Wolves: Luke Walton can now give his dad some quality medical care after raising 3.15 trillion (3:10).
Spurs-Jazz: Kyrylo Fesenko fed himself the dough tonight by earning a 1.45 (1:28) trillion for Utah!
Bulls-Mavs: Omer Asik acquired three boards in 9:58, but fouled and lost the rock twice each for a 4:3 Voskuhl.
DeShawn Stevenson fouled once and tossed a brick from Fountain Place for a +2 in 6:04.
Nyets-Kings: Johan Petro gave New Jersey a 3:2 Voskuhl in 9:37 by negating one field goal with three fouls, while Darnell "Lacktion" Jackson finally served as the purple paupers' human victory cigar with a 42 second Mario!
Knicks-Warriors: Golden State's Dan Gadzuric canceled out a board in 13:15 with two bricked free throws, one giveaway and a trio of fouls for a 4:1 Voskuhl, while fellow Warrior Rodney Carney tossed one piece of masonry from Lake Merritt and fouled twice for a +3 in 9:02.
Heat-Grizzlies: The Care Bears' marquee draft pick, Hasheem Thabeet, negated 1 steal in 5:46 with two charitable pieces of masonry and one foul for a 1:0 Madsen-level Voskuhl.
Jazz-Frail Blazers: Luke Babbitt belted out one of Jigglypuff's tunes in 29 seconds for a Mario.
Knicks-Clippers: Ronny Turiaf earned two boards in 13:20 but fouled five times and lost the rock twice for a 7:2 Voskuhl. Fellow Knickerbocker Bill Walker crawled to Los Angeles City Hall and heaved two bricks in 13:49 for a +2.
Meanwhile, Los Angeles's Other Team gave us Al-Farouq Aminu, whose trio of fouls in 4:54 earned a +3 suck differential.
Celtics-Raptors: As the Celtics took the Rollerblade Ride of Fail tonight in Toronto, Semih Erden encapsulated their night with the negation of two boards with four fouls and a giveaway in 10:42 for a 5:2 Voskuhl.
Wizards-Pistons: Lester Hudson swam into foul territory avoiding Piranha Plants in just 11 seconds for a Mario that also earned a +1 suck differential!
Warriors-Lakers: Derrick Caracter showed plenty of verve with one made shot in 17:10 and a rebound, but four giveaways and a foulout earned a 10:3 Voskuhl, the worst ratio so far this season!