As the end of the NBA regular season draws near, fans of the forgotten Lottery squads all ask themselves one question:
Should we start tanking games now to get a better draft pick?
Usually I’m 100% against that idea. Even if scoring the No. 1 pick means you’ll get LeBron or Shaq or Duncan, I just don’t want my team/coach out there trying to lose. If you get lucky and the balls bounce your way for a franchise-changing superstar, fine; it was meant to happen. But if you tank and then don’t get the top pick anyway, you might have messed around and created a losing culture in your locker room that can take years to eradicate. Read More »
The funniest thing about the NBA Draft Lottery is how team reps try to balance acting happy about getting a high pick with looking sufficiently disappointed that their team was bad enough to end up at the Lottery in the first place.
Danny Granger forgot the “act happy” part. Repping the Pacers, Granger brought a John Wall jersey to the Lottery and was ready to rip off his dress shirt like the Incredible Hulk if the Pacers got the top pick. When they didn’t, he dropped his head onto the table. Lost in the comedy of the moment: Granger was advertising that he needs help. Read More »
Around this time last year, the Indiana Pacers were in pretty good shape. Despite missing the playoffs by a few games, things seemed to be looking up, with Troy Murphy coming off a career year, rookies Roy Hibbert and Brandon Rush showing promise, and some cap space to pick up a contributor or two in free agency.
And most importantly, the Pacers had its franchise player in place. Read More »
Hawks/Heat was only notable last season for being the worst playoff series of ’09: A brutal seven-game stretch of blowouts, dead crowds, a subpar Joe Johnson, an exhausted D-Wade, and some good ol’ Pat Riley-approved ’90s Knicks prison yard basketball sprinkled in here and there. This season it’s been more of the same, as the three Hawks/Heat meetings leading up to last night had been decided by an average of 16 points. And yet Saturday’s matchup turned out to be the best game on the NBA schedule … It was nip/tuck throughout the fourth quarter. Read More »
Earl Watson is not normally one for YouTube highlights (or at least ones of his own), but this shot in last night’s game against the Bulls is kind of nasty. To have the composure to gather the ball after Tyrus Thomas knocked it away, and step up and knock it down from half court, shows why he’s been in the League so long.
There were just too many elements conspiring against the Mavs going into last night’s game in Denver. Facing the second part of a road back-to-back in the Mile High altitude is bad enough, but it gets worse considering the previous game was a grueling 48-minute track meet at Golden State. On top of that, Dallas was without Shawn Marion (back) and Erick Dampier (knee). And finally, Carmelo and Chauncey were back after missing time with respective ankle injuries. Stir it all up, and you have Dallas getting almost 40-pieced in what amounted to a scrimmage for the Nuggets … Read More »
Anybody who’s followed the Pacers over the past couple of seasons would understand why T.J. Ford has been Marburied on Jim O’Brien‘s bench lately.
For all of his speed and attack-mode mentality that theoretically should be tailored for O’Brien’s up-tempo system, Ford’s poor decision-making, shot selection and defense was finally too much for the coach to deal with. So for the last 18 games, Ford has been racking up DNP-CD’s while Earl Watson and A.J. Price handled the point guard duties. Read More »
Beast of the Night:Aaron Brooks exploded for 43 points, 3 rebounds, 5 assists, 1 steal and 1 turnover, while chipping in 6 threes, shooting 47 percent (14-30) from the field and 75 percent (9-12) from the line. True, he was helped by an insane triple-overtime match, but Brooks has been having himself a nice 2010 so far. It’s still likely that he’ll hit a rough patch in the near future, but it’s clear that the little man won’t be flying under any radars next season. Read More »
Seeing as Rasheed Wallace didn’t even bother combing his hair, you kind of got the impression early on that Boston was taking the Pacers lightly — and that was before the C’s fell behind by double-digits in the first quarter. (Oh wait, ‘Sheed never combs his hair. Scratch that part.) KG was given the night off with a thigh bruise, and even Tommy Heinsohn called in sick rather than risk his pipes against Indiana when there’s a big Christmas Day game against Orlando looming … Overcoming a slow start in which they made Earl Watson look like Tim Hardaway, the Celtics managed a tie going into the fourth, and that’s when Paul Pierce took over. Read More »