Oh boy there were a lot of games. I mean A LOT.
NEW YORK 118 MEMPHIS 117 3OT
Don’t be fooled by the multiple overtimes, this was not a good game. The Knicks had a 19 point lead in the fourth quarter, which they blew. Good news for the Knicks is that Eddy Curry seemed more manly, as instructed. Pau Gasol is out with his injury a you know, so the Grizzlies got big scoring nights from Chucky Atkins, Hakim Warrick, and Rudy Gay. For those who dream of a day when the Knicks are without Steph and Francis, they had their wish becuase they were both fouled out somewhere around double OT. When everyone started showing fatigue, the game got tight with lots of missed free throws, terrible shots, bad rebounding, guys dribbling off their feet, and other things to make you cringe. There were so many twists and turns and little things that kept the game going, it’s too bad this wasn’t a playoff game cause it would probably be considered a classic despite the slopiness. CRAWFORD STOLE THE BALL! And got it to Q Rich who was fouled. He hit both free throws, putting the Knicks up 1 with 11.9 seconds left in triple OT. I happen to be writing this live as the game is heading into the Grizzlies final possession. DO NOT FOUL!!! Win or lose, this is going too far. Foul to give, okay, now don’t foul again. By the way Mike Miller’s hair looks like #22 on his team’s name. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. And that very same Mike Miller misses a pretty good look on some double spin get to the hoop floater ish. Whatever. Game over. The Knicks survived a collapse against the Pauless Grizz. I can get back to cleaning my apartment.
CLEVELAND 97 WASHINGTON 94
Gilbert Arenas came off his summer of love with some horrible shooting. As the experts say “He just don’t have it tonight.” So he passed the ball instead on his way to 11 assists and Caron Butler was their top scorer. Larry Hughes was unstoppable to the point where when he subbed in for LeBron, it was hard to tell if the crowd was cheering for Larry coming into the game or for LeBron’s hero’s welcome on his way to the bench. Speaking of LeBron, he kept doing what he did to the Wizards in the playoffs by attacking the hoop for the biggest basket of the game down the stretch. No travelling this time. And one more note on LeBron, I spent part of last night talking to Oscar Robertson. He looks exactly like the old man LeBron character from “The LeBrons.” I think that’s a good thing for Mr. James as he ages.
PHOENIX 112 LA CLIPPERS 104
How would Amare hold up playing two nights in a row? Even better than in night 1! Watch out. I watched big chunks of this game, and though he’s not close to whathe once was, he’s getting there. His dunk on the break had that Amare oomph to it. The Suns are going to be on national TV alot and that is a very smart move. They’re exciting! Steve Nash is really good. My favorite moment of the game was when Kurt Thomas slammed the ball on the floor, got called for a tech and the krazy eyez came out. Klassik. The other great moment was something out of the mouth of Bill Walton, which was “The Clippers are going to be on TV on back to back nights? (they play Denver on TNT tonigt) That’s more than they’ve been in the past dozen or so years!” True Bill. True. Elton Brand kept the Clips in the game with his 28 points and starting PG Shaun Livingston made some nice athletic moves. But the Suns were just feeling it, Marion had 27 and 10, and they held onto their lead this time. Tim Thomas, making his debut as a Clipper against his most recent team, was booed. Good.
ORLANDO 109 CHICAGO 94
The Bulls can use the back to back as an excuse against a team that was making it’s season debut. Dwight Howard 27 points
11 boards 2 blocks. Get used to it, if you’re not already. No low post game? He just dunks on you. Hard. JJ Redick picked up a DNP (As I wrote that I have to admit I feel that if I were the type to pile on topics beated to death I would say he got a DNP not a DUI, but I’m not the type of person to make those jokes, so I won’t). Ben Gordon was firing away but the Bulls were a no show for the most part. Hey it was the second game of a back to back coming off destroying the champs. What, these guys are supposed to play hard every night?
PHILLY 88 ATLANTA 75
I turned this game on and the score was something like 24-3. Not as close as the final score says. AI led the way with 32, as you might expect. Sam Dalembert was earning some of his money with 11 and 11 and a few blocks. Shelden Williams’ first game was not good, but enough of my rabid Duke bashing. Josh Childress had 8 offensive boards, which sounds amazing, but it also means the Hawks couldn’t hit a shot.
NEW ORLEANS 91 BOSTON 87
The Celtics have a black clover on their uniforms this year in honor of the passing of Red. This is the only modification to the only real jersey left in the NBA that I respect. Paul Pierce was a BEAST for Boston 29 and 19 boards?!? Bassy’s Boston debut wasn’t so great, and Rondomania hasn’t taken off yet cause he was held to just 6 points in 22 minutes. Chris Paul put up a 20-10-7 with 3 steals. Those are good statistics. Tyson Chandler grabbed 9 boards in his Hornet debut and Peja actually hit some big shots down the stretch depite a bad shooting night overall.
NEW JERSEY 102 TORONTO 92
Lang’s notes from this game are already up. I mentioned Oscar Robertson earlier, and Jason Kidd payed tribute with yet another triple double. The best commercial of the night was the fantasy basketball ad featuring Kidd and Vince. This guy in an office tells them he wants to trade Jason and Vince is like “No way. We are a team. If he goes, I go.” Then the guy tells them he can get Steve Nash for Kidd. Vince then says something to the effect of “Hey, it’s a business. Bye Jason.” You have to see it yourself. It’s funny.
MILWAUKEE 105 DETROIT 97
Guess who was tossed by the refs for talking back? Rasheed Wallace! No, I’m serious, why don’t you believe me? This should be an eventful year for Sheed with the refs allowed to T up anything they want. Eventful meaning he’s going to be watching a lot of games on TV from the locker room and some from his hotel. Michael Redd got off to a hot start with a 37 point game against a team that may or may not be good defensively. Rip and Chauncey combined for 50, but Sheed was gone before he even scored a point, so that was that for Detroit. Nazr had 8 points and 12 boards in his first real game as a Piston. I don’t think we’ll be on the 70 win watch for them this year. Charlie Villanueva shot just 6 of 21 in his Bucks debut but he did have 12 boards and 4 steals. Whatever, Redd scored 37 against a Wallace free Pistons team.
LA LAKERS 110 GOLDEN STATE 98
Look who’s 2-0! The Lakers used a 38 point third quarter to put this one away, as the return of Nellie led to Monta Ellis leading the Warriors with 22 points. As for the Lakers, I guess the move is to swaggerjack Bill Simmons and call for The Ewing Theory. No KB24, no KB54 (that’s Kwame Brown, like it matters), and they have the best record in the league. Lamar Odom, my God. 22-9-9. Ronnie Turiaf with 23 and 9 with 2 steals and 2 blocks. Ryan Jones wants to get back on the bandwagon SO badly. Don’t let him.
MINNESOTA 92 SACRAMENTO 83
Another victim of the new tech rules was Mike Bibby. This was a hard fought game and Bibby lost his cool down the stretch getting the double T and saying good night. Kevin Martin led the Kings with 23 points and Ron Ron had a tough shooting night, but did have seven steals. KG was back at it with 24 and 12 on just 9 shot attempts. Mike James wasn’t ball hogging nearly enough and Randy Foye barely got in there to do anything.
INDIANA 106 CHARLOTTE 99
Danny Granger delivered the hardest foul of the year so far, and now Gerald Wallace has a really bad headache. He was dizzy for a while, and maybe he should take a few days off. If this was the NFL he would be back out there throwing picks for the Steelers. On the court, Emeka Okafor reminded us that he’s still here with 19-13 and 6 blocks. And someone else expected to do something last year but didn’t, had a big night. Sarunas! 20 points off the bench for Indy, while Jermaine O’Neal had 20 of his own. Stephen Jackson took 15 shots, connecting on 4 of them. Make your own jokes about that. Adam Morrison hit a 40 footer. He’s nice like that. Although he didn’t have such a great game with 14 points on 13 shots and defense is going to be a problem for him. Interesting that Adam’s team would have to face Larry Bird’s team in his first game. Subtle, NBA. Subtle.
UTAH 107 HOUSTON 97
Carlos Boozer put his trade value way up there with a monstrous 24 and 19. Deron Williams joined him with a double-double of his own, and the Jazz got some big shots from quiet off-season acquisition Derek Fisher. Houston’s starters were fine, but the bench did nothing and Bonzi didn’t play. T-Mac looked healthy with 25 and 9, and he didn’t even have that good of a game. Yao was dominant for stretches, but not overpowering like the second half of last season.
PORTLAND 110 SEATTLE 106
Brandon Roy took the early lead in the rookie of the year race with 20 points, leading his team to the win over a team that’s probably abandoning its fans. Fantasy basketball superstar Zach Randolph had a 30 and 10 night, getting to the free throw line 15 times andhitting 14 of them. As for the Sonics, Luke Ridnour had a great stat night of his own with 22-13-5 and 3 steals. Rashard Lewis led the team with 25. Great start for the Portland run at respectability. I have no idea what to think of the Sonics. They are what we thought they were?
Did I miss anything? I most likely did. Lemme know.