Wednesday, December 30, 2009
By Kevin Arnovitz
- You know that old basketball meme that says a coach drawing a technical foul is one way to fire up his team? As Bret LaGree of Hoopinion enumerates, the possessions following Mike Woodson's technical last night in Atlanta were every bit as ugly as the ones that preceded it. Hoopinion also had this morsel in its recap of the Hawks' loss to Cleveland: "It's easier ... to work in isolation ... than to put in the hard, collaborative work to integrate five players in a productive concert of motion. It's easier to walk the ball up the court than it is to work hard to get the ball, be it via turnover or defensive rebound, then press on to push the ball up the court and attack a defense before it's set."
- The Sun-Sentinel's Ira Winderman on the relationship between Alonzo Mourning-Michael Beasley: "Michael and Zo talk just about every day immediately after practice. Zo also pops his head into the locker room after games, looks at Beasley, shakes his head with a smile, and keeps on going. When Zo is looking to take his kid home after games, you're not sure if he means Trey, his 13 year old, or Michael, his 20 year old."
- Dave McMenamin of ESPN Los Angeles on the mystery surrounding Ron Artest's concussion: "The problem is we still don't know what happened because he doesn't know what happened. During the course of the impromptu 10-minute long press conference at halftime, Artest said some variation of the phrase 'I can't remember' 15 times."
- Rahat Huq of Red94 on the mixed emotions that accompany Tracy McGrady's departure: "This team, as currently composed, will need an elite player to attain the heights it seeks. While the vision had crumbled of McGrady once more becoming that player, I felt he could at least masquerade in the role, utilizing the vestiges that still remained of a once deadly arsenal, boosting the team through close fourth quarters. But that will not happen – Tracy McGrady is gone."
- Zach Lowe noticed an interesting trend when the deliberate Celtics' offense confronts one of the league's get-out-and-run squads, at least prior to the Celtics' loss at Oakland Monday night: "Bizarrely, the C’s have had a lot more trouble against the hares of the league when they drag the hares down to Boston’s own tortoise pace. When they give in and run like crazy at the hares preferred speed, the C’s have been 6-0 against Golden State, Indiana, New York, Phoenix and Minnesota since the start of last season."
- It's a pretty amazing feat: The last time the San Antonio Spurs weren't a top five team in defensive efficiency was 1996-97. This season, they rank 14th. Basketball Free For All examines the roster to figure out why.
- Graydon Gordian of 48 Minutes of Hell gets the full Gregg Popovich treatment during the postgame press conference following the Spurs win over Minnesota.
- The Bobcats and Raptors meet tonight in Toronto. In their last meeting at Charlotte, the Raps lost by 35. Zarar Siddiqi on the pre-Thanksgiving massacre: "You might recall the last Bobcats game, it’s the one where you almost stopped being a fan. You know how in movies when a violent crime is committed against somebody, the memory is a bit hazy and they only remember the most shocking parts, and when the police asks them to recall the events of that miserable night, they burst into tears because they just remembered how awful it all really was."
- According to Dan Steinberg of D.C. Sports Bog, it appears as if the Washington Times won't have sports section after tomorrow.
- What's sent the Wizards spiraling from respectability? Matt Moore of Hardwood Paroxysm offers this theory: "In a way, LeBron killed it. And I know that hurts.But when he spoke to Gilbert at the line, something changed. Nothing was right after that. It was just disaster after disaster, be it the quiet unfortunate kind (the playoff elimination sans Gilbert), the abject demolition (the injury 08-09 season), or this year, the death of hope."
- Clippers center DeAndre Jordan tweets: "My boy @Baron_Davis came to the plane in a cashmere robe and sweats, so we decided it was time for a photo shoot babyyyyyyy ... http://tl.gd/1d7io"