You could have crammed an entire postseason’s worth of story lines into last night’s Game 4 of the NBA Finals. Which would be a big help to us, because Miami’s 104-98 win over OKC was so incredible and intense that we almost forgot all about the other stories from these playoffs that led up to it … As usual, it starts with LeBron. His 26-point, 12-assist, 9-rebound performance featured some passes borrowed from Magic and some buckets borrowed from Kobe, but then it really got interesting after LeBron went down late in the fourth quarter with what appeared to be leg cramps (or a busted hip, or a thigh bruise, depending on who you ask). Read More »
TAG: Nick Collison
The whole “clutch gene” thing has taken on a life of its own in the past year or two. It’s become an impossible standard to live up to. But for once, even with great player after great player succumbing to its weight and expectations, someone stepped up and met the challenge. Through the Western Conference Finals’ first three games, Kevin Durant had 13 fourth quarter points. Last night in OKC’s series-tying 109-103 win, he dropped 18 and made every single big basket. Durant (36 points) wasn’t just hitting jumpers either; In fact, most of his buckets in the fourth quarter were tear drops or midrange pull-ups, the hardest shots to master in the game. He made pretty much all of them, and by the time it was over, he had officially stamped his blueprint on a series that suddenly looks very interesting. Read More »
A dunk-off between Blake Griffin and… Nick Collison? The former Jayhawk must’ve been feeling that extra NCAA Championship juice in his legs last night with his old school playing for it all. Griffin did what he always does, which is something hardly anyone else in the world can do. Thanks mostly to Randy Foye because of his eight triples, the Clippers went into the Big D and took the air out of the Mavs. Foye wasn’t perfect though, and his missed shot here led to this. Read More »
“Alas! How dreary would be the world if there was no Santa Claus!” Francis P. Church wrote those words in the New York Sun way back in 1897, responding to the inquiry of a young girl by the name of Virginia. Today, with the holidays in full swing and the (lockout shortened) NBA season set to begin, we wanted to take a look at the league’s most charitable on-court players – the ones you would much rather be playing with as opposed to against. Whether they are passing up shots in favor of assists, grabbing tough boards, playing tight defense, diving on the floor for loose balls, forfeiting minutes to youngsters and touches to superstars, or simply reveling in unselfishness and team leadership, these are the guys that will sacrifice and give of themselves for the betterment and happiness of their teammates and franchises. Read More »
It’s not like flopping is a cultural phenomenon solely owned by the NBA. It’s a disease that’s infiltrating every corner of professional sports. Take last weekend for example. Jerome Simpson, a 25-year-old wide receiver for Cincinnati, drew a 15-yard penalty against the Browns last Sunday by flopping harder than Rollerball. One little shove and boom, he was up, up and away, launching himself five feet off the ground, the largest jack rabbit anyone had ever seen. What made it even worse was the ref didn’t see it and yet still drew the flag. Read More »
The Oklahoma City Thunder are not like a box of chocolates. You know they’ve got four fantasy studs that can feasibly be drafted in succession in the first four rounds of standard-sized drafts. Truth be told, no one else on this roster really matters. It will be interesting to monitor how the team’s mercurial point guard adjusts to having a more prominent mate in the backcourt. Read More »
What are we really fighting about?
For the scarred veterans of countless throw-downs with significant others, it is the grand question that hovers over each petty incident—the subtitles that clarify the curse words. And every now and then, the more mature versions of ourselves can diffuse a hostile situation by asking that question.
But sometimes it only makes things worse. Read More »
Way back when, Macedonian generals returned home from battle to a heap of lavish praise and gifts. As long as their aggression brought back the fruitful spoils of devastation, all was forgiven. That is Russell Westbrook. If he were an historical figure, I’d assume he’d be Alexander The Great (If you take anything away from this, remember that Alexander was Macedonian, not Greek). Capable of conquering in a flash, but ultimately renounced and rebuked by future schoolteachers everywhere. “Be humble,” they would say. “Live within your means. Don’t overextend yourself.” But we are the masses, and we don’t listen to the wise words of a few. When we hit the street courts to emulate our favorite players, we don’t take a charge and scream “Big Baby!” Instead we chuck a fadeaway from the elbow, clinging to ephemeral hope while teetering on the precipice of utter disappointment. But then the shot goes in, and calamity turns to jubilation. Poor shot selection turns into greatness. Read More »
We used to think the best part of James Harden was his beard. Not anymore. Not with the way he helped spearhead a huge 106-100 Game 2 win for the Thunder by scoring 10 points in the fourth quarter. After a first game that saw Dallas’ bench chew up the Thunder reserves, it looks like someone took it upon himself to make things right. Actually they all took it personal. Nick Collison (six points, seven rebounds), Eric Maynor (13 points), Daequan Cook (eight points) and most importantly Harden (23 points, seven rebounds, four treys) all contributed. Read More »
He’s not flashy. He doesn’t run the floor like Russell Westbrook, drop buckets like Kevin Durant or swat shots into the rich seats like Serge Ibaka, but Nick Collison has become far from just another sub on OKC’s Western Conference Finals squad. And after watching the seventh year pro from Kansas battle it out in both of the Thunder’s two playoff series thus far, it’s clear that OKC needs a healthy dose of more Collison if they want to take their show any further. Read More »