I take it all back. To Celtics fans, I apologise. I was so sure today’s game would result in a San Antonio victory I’d already chalked it up in the “L” column. A team anchored around their missing power forward, KG, facing the best power forward in the game in Tim Duncan. Ray Allen and Paul Pierce both coming off sub-par games. The Spurs looking to make a statement against their Eastern Conference foes. It was all supposed to add up to a San Antonio victory, at least in my mind. But the Celtics prevailed in one of their more impressive wins this season (and that is saying something because they’ve had a heap of impressive wins) with Paul Pierce doing his best Paul Pierce ala 2005 impersonation and carrying his team to victory. The most impressive stat? The Celtics are 16-0 against Western Conference teams. That is astounding for a couple of reasons. 1) Seven of the best nine teams in the league are from the Western Conference and the Celtics haven’t lost to any of them, and 2) The Celtics have inexplicably lost all of their games to (L)Eastern Conference teams. That second point may be cause for concern, but if getting out of the East is supposed to be the easy part then the Celtics must be damn happy with that 16-0 mark.
Marion’s debut against the Lakers must have made him extremely happy because he had lots of good stats. But seriously, when I read about Riley’s prediction that Wade and the Matrix could be the next Jordan-Pippen I almost choked on my bagle (I eat them for breakfast sometimes). Wade could be one of the all time best shooting guards but hasn’t done himself any favours by failing to carry his team this season. Meanwhile Marion isn’t worthy of carrying Pippen’s jockstrap let alone emulating his on-court performances. Maybe if he made an All-Defensive team (or ten) and maybe if he didn’t go missing in the playoffs (yes I’m aware Scottie went “migrane” on the Bulls vs the Pistons early in their playoff rivarly but c’mon, he made a mends for it) for a change. Still, I do agree that the future is a little brighter for the Heat right now, and even though they might end the season losing 44 of their last 45 games they will have a shiney new draft pick to play with and a (hopefully) rested D-Wade to ignite their 08-09 campaign.
The Pistons were super-duper impressive once again, this time against the Charlotte Bobcats. It was a similar story to the Portland game, except it was Tay who went nuts in the first quarter instead of Chauncey. All starters kicked back and relaxed for the remainder of the game, and despite a late scare when the Cats came roaring back, the young core of Stuckey, Johnson, Afflalo and Maxiell stayed calm and collected and closed the game. I’m convinced Rodney Stuckey is the next Dwyane Wade. I’m not the first person to say that (I can credit Jobba for that), but his ability to break down defenders one-on-one, find open team mates, and finish with jump-out-of-your-seat explosiveness reminds me awfully a lot of Wade – especially since they are almost identically sized players. Check out Stuckey’s huge dunk from today’s game – you’ll have to scroll down a bit to see this clip. Meanwhile Sheed has to cancel his fishing trip because he’s going to the All-Star game. I’m happy to see Sheed there – I did predict he should be an All-Star quite a while ago. But I’m also aware of how ridiculously well Hedo Turkoglu (hard name to type) has been playing of late, and despite my Pistons bias, he is a more deserving All-Star. But I guess Stern had to pick someone capable of playing the centre spot and with only Dwight in the team, Sheed was probably a good option.
Denver absolutely spanked the Cavs and Lebron threw a hissy fit, this from the ESPN game recap:
Denver led by 11 points after one quarter, 18 at halftime and pushed its advantage to 26 by the end of the third. At the end of that period, James stormed off the court, took a seat at the far end of Cleveland’s bench and didn’t take part in coach Mike Brown’s huddle before the fourth quarter began.
Sounds like Lebron needs to call a Wahmbulance as well. I can’t blame the guy though. Left, right and centre trades are being made all over the league to push title-contending teams into bonafide championship favourites yet the Cleveland Cavaliers don’t so much as budge an inch to help Lebron out. There are some that say they should be seeking out J-Kidd – I say this is a horrible idea for the Cavs because they already have someone who can’t shoot (Larry Hughes) and Lebron is a brilliant distributor of the ball anyway. They need a strong scoring guard in the mould of Bibby or Mike (Mark) James who can run the point better than Grandpa Snow while providing a legit three-point scoring threat. But you know what’s funny. I was thinking earlier today that when it comes to the playoffs and Lebron is facing the Celtics/Pistons, can you honestly tell me you don’t see him single-handedly winning at least two playoff games off his own bat? Throw in a surprise cameo from Booby Gibson (I hate you) or Drew Gooden (like that game he played against the Celtics) and you have the Cavs making a series of it against any body. I will go on record right now as saying that despite the dominance of Detroit and Boston, I would NOT be surprised to see the Cavs in the Finals again. They’re not even playing that well right now, yet I’m still saying this. I may be insane but I’ve watched Lebron grow and mature this year and considering they’ve beaten the Celtics twice it would not be out of the question. But I’m probably just insane.
Comment posted by
at 2/12/2008 7:08:52 PM
yes… luckily for you
Comment posted by
at 2/11/2008 9:14:12 PM
“The Celtics are 16-0 against Western Conference teams. ”
that’s cos they haven’t played the suns yet…