Smack / May 8, 2010 / 3:39 am

Legendary LeBron, Dominant Dragic, Suffering Spurs

LeBron James did what legends do. After his Cavaliers got smoked on their home court by the Celtics in Game 2, with talk turning more toward his injured elbow and odds starting to swing in Boston’s favor in the eyes of some, LeBron set the record straight in last night’s Game 3. Boston never had a chance in front of their home crowd: LeBron outscored the Celtics by himself in the first quarter (21-17), on his way to a 38-point, 8-rebound, 7-assist effort while handing the Celtics their worst home playoff loss ever, a 29-point beating … Think about that. They’ve been hosting playoff games in Boston since Abraham played point guard, and in all those years of Russell, Cousy, Cowens, Bird and Pierce, they’d never taken an L that bad … LeBron got most of his on long jumpers, but also threw in a near-360 dunk off an alley-oop where he had to duck his head to avoid the backboard, and another acrobatic finish where he caught a bad lob and laid it in anyway while twisting his body in mid-air (“aerial pyrotechnics” according to ESPN’s Mark Jones). And on the defensive end, LBJ helped hold Pierce to 11 points on 4-of-15 shooting. “He was playing H-O-R-S-E,” Doc Rivers said. “We were awful.” … Even in the rout, Shelden Williams and Marquis Daniels barely saw the court. Apparently those plans of Shelden taking some of Rasheed‘s minutes and Marquis being used as a secret weapon to help stick LeBron went out the window completely … Jay-Z and Beyonce made it out to Beantown and surprisingly managed to snag courtside seats. Would Jay even bother going to a game where his feet couldn’t touch the court? Not even Denzel gets seats that good 100% of the time in L.A. … And LeBron didn’t even have the biggest 12-minute scoring explosion of the night; that title belongs to Goran Dragic. Here’s two things you need to know about Dragic and why he is where he is: (1) Phoenix got him from the Spurs in a draft-day trade, and (2) He really put himself on the map with NBA scouts after a European Championship game where he gave Tony Parker the business. And you thought the Luis Scola trade was coming back to bite San Antonio in the ass? … Dragic personally put the Spurs on the brink of elimination, dropping 23 points in the fourth quarter of last night’s Game 3, as the Suns’ backups thoroughly outplayed the Spurs’ starters down the stretch to put Phoenix up 3-0 in the series. Becoming increasingly famous with every bucket, Dragic (26 pts, 10-13 FG, 5 threes) took what was a close game and ended it with a mix of crafty shots in the lane, quick drives to the cup and threes — mostly while Steve Nash was on the bench with most of the the Suns’ starters. The “Officially Playing Out Of His Mind” moment came when Dragic was stuck in a corner and ripped through just to create a foul, but banged home a triple almost on accident to set up a four-point play. Leandro Barbosa was also big in the fourth, finishing with 13 points. You knew something crazy had to be going on for Phoenix to win a game where Amar’e only scored 7 points … By the time the Spurs’ had thrown in the towel, Parker (10 pts, 5-17 FG) was limping around holding his ear. Makes sense. You know how somebody will get their ass beat and then get a ringing sound in their ear? There ya go … Would a Suns sweep make up for all the other years where San Antonio took their heart in the postseason? Not really, unless it eventually leads to a championship. But if the Spurs avoid a sweep and win Game 4, then Phoenix closes it out at home, it’ll at least look like a championship celebration in AZ … Gilbert Arenas is out of the halfway house and free to focus on his next NBA comeback. The Wizards had been saying all was clear for Gilbert to play for them, but under new ownership, who knows what will happen. If your team could afford him, would you want Arenas in a trade? … Did you catch Iron Man 2 yet? If so, tell us what you thought of the movie. And in the meantime, check out Dime’s NBA All-Iron Man Team. Hint: Kobe Bryant is involved … We’re out like Shelden …

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  • http://www.myspace.com/40sand9s Loc

    Scorin Goran,

    shit was incredible!!!

  • dat dood

    dragic was strait killing it. i’ve been lighting doods up with him in 2k for months now, nice to see him make my video game play a reality.

  • the cynic

    Pop must be a fan of Mike Woodson’s switch everything defense cause he perfected it last night.

    Good panic job with the line-up change too, by putting Parker back in the starting line-up when Manu/Hill/Jefferson/Dice/Duncan has been your best line-up all year. Hill felt the pressure to produce off the bench that he didn’t have in the starting line-up and it showed

  • A-Slam

    all i have to say is.. ranjerjohn, WHERE YOU AT!..bitch

  • sh!tFACED

    Spurs throwing the towel – so who gets the 25k fine…?

    “And you thought the Luis Scola trade was coming back to bite San Antonio in the ass?”

    – always been saying that Scola bite back every chance I get, but that Dragic shit, I didn’t see coming.

    Although the Robert Horry take down karma – now that’s the bite back ass shit any Suns fan should feel right now… LOL

  • Gunner J. Matthews

    It was a Beantown Beatdown friday night. All the Boston teams took home an L. As soon as I saw Lebron do that 360, I knew shit wasnt gonna be pretty for the rest of the night. Lebron basically dropped the “People’s Elbow” on the Celtics

  • sh!tFACED

    Damn LeBron just showed why he’s the fucking MVP.

    And speaking of H-O-R-S-E (or should it spell W-H-O-R-E-S? – just messing lol) those Beyonce legs are more than enough “aerial pyrotechnics”…

  • sh!tFACED

    …just ask Jeff Van Gundy

  • Bruce

    The end of Tim Duncan era!

  • cdiz

    Dragic is gonna get seriously overpaid because of this game

  • Rizwan

    Where’s that idiot who said the Spurs were going to tie it up by Monday?!

    3-0 baby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • S-SiN

    Props to Goran.

  • Rizwan

    The only question left is whether it will be sweeter to win on their floor or give the home crowd something to cheer about louder than they are now.

    And isnt it poetic that Goran Dragic, a foreign player, becomes the talk of Arizona?

  • fLaVa

    Goran was unbeleivable last night!!!

    F Spurs…

    Lakers 2010 Champs!!!

  • Lee

    @ Rizwan

    Steve Nash is a foreign player too …

  • porkpiehat

    Dragic looked like the worst backcourt guy in the league last year…I really don’t know what happened, maybe it was a confidence thing, he used to look so lost, and he couldn’t shoot to save his life.

    Clearly not the same player he was. I want to see a DNA test, to make sure they didn’t create a better Goran in a lab.

    Seriously, though, wtf? Spurs are done, and so is their era, as Shitface up above says.

  • Rizwan

    @ Lee

    Really, I didnt know that, thanks(!) Come on, the point I was making was that after the crap that the Suns got from some of their own fans about the ‘Los Suns’ thing, its good to see that they have rallied around the team on the back of a player, who would fit into that stereotype that they are looking to exclude.

    Wow, I thought it was pretty clear without me needing to spell it out!

  • BC

    Spurs looked to be running away with it in the first quarter — I guess it proves they’re old when they can only sustain the effort for less than 12 minutes?

    I can’t watch any Lakers games or games with Jeff Van Gundy doing commentary — all because of the Gasol man-crushes. He actually said that Gasol should be on the All-NBA First Team last night… ahead of Lebron, Durant, or Howard JVG???

    Gasol did have a good year: 18.3 ppg / 11.3 rpg, but seriously, are those all-NBA first team numbers? He’s pretty much averaged those stats for 10 years, and no one noticed.

    Gasol got 94 points in the All-NBA voting… but he’s very close in stats to:

    Chris Bosh: 24 ppg / 10.8 rpg — not even on 3rd team (80 points in the voting)

    Chris Kaman: 18.5 ppg / 9.5 rpg — 9 points in the voting

    Gerald Wallace: 18.2 ppg / 10.0 rpg — 5 whole points in the voting

    Oh – and Gasol only played in 65 games!!! How do him and Brandon Roy get any votes if they didn’t play enough games to qualify for the statistical rankings?
    (same for Chris Paul — how did he get any votes when he played 45 games?)

  • common sense

    aight. i dont think Goran or leandro can sustain that level of play but if they can ride this surge of confidence into the next round then watch out lakeshow..

  • that’s what’s up

    @ Rizwan – go fuck yourself. I’m not an idiot.

    well shit. Congratulations to the phoenix suns. Whether you win on Sunday, or sometime next week, your team deserves it. You are playing well, have good chemistry and are on a roll. Best of luck against the Lakers.

    …and again, Rizwan, go fuck yourself.

  • Soopa

    Suns are suddenly a very deep team with the way those bench players are emerging.

    I wanna see the Suns 2nd unit versus the Laker scrubs lol the starters will have to play 48mins for LA!

  • fallinup

    The Spurs looked like a JV team out there against Dragic. That shit was just crazy. My wife (who’s from San Antonio BTW) came in wondering why I was cussing so much. I told her that Dragic was plain killing the Spurs… “see look!” And just like clockwork, he made a few moves… easily got to the basket and dropped another one right over Tim…she got up and walked out the room.

    Every last weakness that the Spurs overcame against Dallas… got totally and utterly exposed against the Suns this series.

    It’s still painful to watch Tim Duncan being singled out and scored on so easily. I love the Spurs. But I’m also man enough to say that it’s over.

    If I don’t see a sweep… I’ll be shocked. The Suns, Alvin Gentry… they’re the real deal. Let’s see them do that in L.A.

  • fallinup

    Bill Simmons summarizes on Twitter:

    “Mike Dunleavy is wearing a Gregg Popovich mask and running the Spurs into the ground right now. There’s no other explanation.”

    That’s how I was feeling. :)

  • Frank Ricard

    Cavs were simply awesome. Delonte did a great job of keeping the scoreboard ticking over. KG played well and Rondo exploded. Wallace was on the beach and Pierce looks DAMN slow.

    Celts wont go down with a fight, but I think NBA fans are going to have a treat with Dwight (cry baby) going up against the REAL SUPERMAN.

  • Ansonious

    Even though the series isn’t over(but we all know it is,) and even if it only happens once ever ten years ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha @ Austin Burton where’s your team now? ha ha ha ha ha ha ha Go Suns!!!!!!!!!!

  • Ian

    well shit
    good win by the suns

    when the playoffs started imo only three teams had a shot at the lakers the spurs, denver and dallas and magically the lakers get to play everyone else but them. now if nash makes the finals at least the fake mvp cant take his team to the finals crap will stop.

  • tja

    delonte looked like a naked mole rat…

  • sh!tFACED

    Well, Stan Van Gundy has been wearing a Ron Jeremy mask for years now. No explanation needed.

  • QQ

    So I said Suns in 6, and some shithead said ‘hahaha you’re funny’, Now, what’s funny is that the Suns would likely need LESS games to eliminate the Spurs. To that shithead, I say: Tell me how the Suns’ ass taste.

    Dominant peformance by Bron, but I’m still picking the Celts. Expecting them to bounce back. Celts in 7.

  • Spliff 2 My Lou

    We saw the Slovenian version of the Dream Shake a few times last night. Dragic killed it. Good to see the kid get some shine. It’s been hard for him to live in Nash’s shadow.

  • QQ

    @ 24:

    Dwight Howard? Cry baby? Hmmm… The only time Dwight will cry when matched up against Shaq is when he tears up laughing at Shaq trying to defend him, cause it’s just unfair.

    And what, the REAL superman? HAHAHAHAHA. The last time Shaq cared, the Pistons are perennial contenders. Do the math.

  • bookkwormmaster

    April 30th, 2010 at 10:34 am

    Ian says:

    bookwormmaster
    im sorry but isnt that the same pg and pf the spurs kill every time they meet in the playoffs? why should the spurs figure out how to beat them when they already know how. the suns should be thinking how nash wont be murdered by parker like he always does and how amare can be kept out of foul trouble when playin td like he always is. i just dont see the suns being a bigger threat than the mavs.

    Not trying to be a jerk by reposting that (so please don’t take offense) but I think I was correct with the genral assessments I made about the Spurs-Suns series. The Suns are on a serious mission right now to gain respectability not only amongst their peers but also the diehard and casual NBA fans as well. And it starts with the Spurs who have consistly ousted them from the playoffs for about 4-5 years now

  • Ansonious

    actually 10 years.

  • Charles

    Dragic was good last night. But, I remember one game when LaBradford Smith hung 37 on Michael Jordan and the Bulls a few years back. So, give the kid a couple years to see if he’s consistent.

  • abcdefg

    @24 Frank Richard

    Errm, I believe last year LeBron did the crying as he walked off the court like a douche bag after his team lost.

    LeBron is not a legend, what a stupid tagline.

  • K Dizzle

    @ Ian

    I guess the years of gettin beatdown by the Spurs finally caused the Suns fans to snap. Dudes are on here, showin much class lol. I’m shocked that the deciding players in this series has been the Suns bench. Frye in game 2, Dudley in game 2 and Dragic in game 3. U tell me that Amare and Nash combine for 23, I assume they get killed.

    I can’t feel bad that teams out west keep pavin our way to the Finals, but this a different Suns squad so it might not be that cakewalk most are predicting.
    What the Nash haters gonna say now?
    D’Antoni is gone, and dude is still ballin….
    Produck of the system? pffffft please

  • baron

    Dad gummit man, Spurs old draft picks comin’ back to haunt them (Dragic, Barbosa).

    Well congratulations to Phoenix for dismantling the Spurs’ hopes this year.

    Just don’t act like complete jackasses until you win the Championship, then it’s whatever if you wanna be classless pricks and rub it in, like Lakers fans always do ceaselessly until they lose again.

  • RonNation

    let’s go jazz!!

  • rangerjohn

    #20 pretty much summed it up.

    good win for the suns, the spurs had no business losing game 2 or 3 but they did so good for you suns fan.

    series isnt over but its pretty damn close.

  • Rizwan

    @ 20 and 38

    How about you both fuck off?! I’m sure you would have been behaving the same way if you guys 3-0 and I’m sure you have done before when faced against the Suns and you’ve whooped us!

  • EN FUEGO

    Goran Dragic, George Hill, 37 yr old Grant Hill, a Vince Carter flashback. Shit. Everybody’s showing up and making an impact in the playoffs except for Richard Jefferson.

    RJ ought to be ashamed by now. If Michael Finley will have a breakout game before he does…

  • bookkwormmaster

    @ K Dizzle

    Lol! Naw homie I’m not a Suns fan. I’m actually from the ATL. Watchin my Hawks take these ass-whoopings and not bein able to do anything about but go back to the drawing board and hopin we can make some moves in the offseason.

    I actually read you guys comments alot here on Dime but I rarely comment. Tryin’ to get more into though. I respect alot of you guys that comment on here and give your opinions some insightful most lol hilarious

  • necromancer

    Anybody besides me thinking LeBron finally decided to take a legal needle in that Achilles elbow, instead of machoing it out and losing like in game 2? Whatever(legal)works…this is War, y’all.

  • ballin

    Goran Dragic was known as Goran Tragic last year. He was TERRIBLE.

    Steve Nash must’ve taught him a thing or two over the summer because he came back this season a completely different player

  • cov

    ok so everybody knows what happened with bron and the cavs right? after the mvp award the cavs went out and got toasted. they partied very hard and that’s why for game two they were sluggish and got ran at home. they were hungover.

    the celts can’t compete with them this year, simple as that. so expect the rest of the series to be like games 1 and 3. Long as the cavs don’t get drunk another night before a game they’ll be alright.

  • mang

    The perfect analogy to this spurs-suns series is that of the nerdy guy in high school (suns), who asked out the hot chick (spurs) every day and got rejected. Now it’s the 10 year reunion (2010 playoffs), and the nerdy guy has ditched the glasses, has a good job, etc. On the other hand, the hot chick had a few kids, gained some weight, and basically peaked in high school. Now after a few drinks, they hook up in the bathroom of their old gymnasium. Yeah, technically the nerd finally got the hot chick, but it would have been so much cooler 10 years ago.

    They better savor this win because the lakers will bring them back to reality.

  • EN FUEGO

    another cocksucker making excuses for ledouche. everyone knows nobody parties during the playoffs. in between rounds, maybe. but not during a series. you stupid or something? get that weak pathetic shit outta here.

    always excuses for the cavs. if it isn’t the elbow, its the partying. bullshit. take it like a man. some cavs fans are just sore losers like ledouche. hope the cleveland douches would lose already. maybe then the annoyance would stop.

    celtics in 7. cavs don’t have what it takes, simple as that.

  • EN FUEGO

    if phoenix is the nerdy guy who went on and made it after graduation and san antonio is the hot chick who peaked at high school…

    does that make dallas the loser in high school who came back as school janitor and will always be remembered as the the guy who got so wasted partying one night, he hooked up with the hottest girl in school and almost, almost, got laid – too bad he couldn’t ‘rise’ up to the occasion.

  • QQ

    Then the Nuggets are that dumb kid who always think he’s one of the cool guys while the other people laugh behind his back because he’s 27 and can’t even finish high school.

  • dvs

    these high school comparisons are hilarious.
    The lakers must be the popular,quarter back guy, and the clippers are his fat ugly kid brother that he picks on.

  • sh!tfaced

    The Knicks are that butt-ugly looking loser, dweeb who’s popular and gets girls just because he drives a sports car and his dad is a somebody and the family is filthy rich.

    The Cavs – the popular teacher’s pet. Star athlete, scholar, class president. Annoying, arrogant, thinks he’s got Hollywood actor looks and the best thing that happened to the school. The type you want to punch in the face – always making excuses and hasn’t actually won shit his whole life.

    The Pacers – the newly transferred hillbilly white boy from the country.

    The Celtics are that big ass all-state senior star linebacker bully always talkin’ shit and taking lunch money – even if he’s in a wheelchair supposedly because of injuries.