Let’s get right to it.
GOLDEN STATE 107 DALLAS 104
Dallas raised their Western Conference champions banner before the game. That was the best part of their night. The latest victim of the tougher tech calls was Avery Johnson. Trying to steal the spotlight from Nellie’s return to Dallas, huh? Jason Terry took L’il Dun off the dribble (easily) and had his layup snuffed out by Andris Biedrins. It looked clean to me, but Avery didn’t agree, got T’d up and sent to the lockerroom. Maybe he was trying to get his team fired up, and it’s not like they don’t have 10 other coaches on the bench. Del Harris took over from there. In the fourth Terry retaliated with a hard foul on Monta Ellis for a flagrant 2 and an early exit. That was bad for the Mavs because Jason Terry is a good three point shooter unlike, say, Devin Harris, who had the ball in his hands with a chance to tie the game and send it to OT but opted to pass it to Anthony Johnson with no time on the clock. That wasn’t smart. Baron Davis played the full 48 minutes, leading the Warriors with 26, 8, and 7. J-Rich had the layup that put them on top, as Golden State got their coach the emotional win. Or as Nellie put it “At 66, you don’t find a lot of emotion except for love and death. But it was a special (night) for me.” Dirk led Dallas with 26 and 11. It’s too early to worry about them being 0-3. Oh by the way, Josh Howard sprained his ankle and is having an MRI today and the Mavs next two games are a back to back at the Clippers and at Phoenix. Okay, panic.
UTAH 103 DETROIT 101
Andrei Kirilenko allowed Rip Hamilton to blow by him, and Memo Okur saved the day with a blocked shot to seal the win? What planet is this? Not to keep bringing up the technical foul thing, but there was a big call in this game that gave the Jazz a technical free throw. A call against a Detroit coach. Dave Cowens, who isn’t even the head coach. That’s bad. Speaking of techs, Rasheed picked up his fourth of the season, but was able to stay in the game without adding another on his way to a 25 and 12 night with 4 blocks. Disturbing Rasheed quote of the night: “This cat (referee Steve Javie) is looking at me from the other side of the court and he bangs me up.” Uh… moving on, Chauncey Billups missed a big free throw late, which rarely happens. Memo and Boozer each had double doubles.
ORLANDO 106 WASHINGTON 103
Carlos Arroyo carried the Magic to the win almost singlehandedly, scoring 12 of his 23 off the bench in the fourth quarter including a big three to tie the game off some crisp ball movement. Jameer Nelson has been a turnover machine this year, and Carlos might have a promotion to starter coming in the near future if this keeps up. The Wizards had their chances to tie it, and Gilbert could have sent it to OT with an okay look at a three, but it wasn’t meant to be. Jamison led Washington with 29 and Arenas scored 24, but most of that was from the line as he shot 6 of 20. Etan Thomas blocked 6 shots and Dwight Howard blocked 5 to go with his 14 boards.
SAN ANTONIO 105 NEW YORK 93
The Knicks put on a spirited run to get their fans hopes up, only to have them crushed by the cold facts of life. Isiah pulled the billionaires club and went with youth against the Spurs and as Tony Parker was quoted after the game “The second group played harder. That’s for sure.” Great. The lineup of Nate Robinson, David Lee, Malik Rose, Mardy Collins, and Q Rich (not everyone was pulled) got the Knicks back into the game, then they incorporated the starters back into the flow – except Steve Francis, who got Bowened in the first quarter (by that I mean he was injured because The Bowen Collector is the dirtiest player in the league and he will do the little things that will cause injury such as standing underneath a jump shooter so he lands awkwardly. But really, did the Spurs need Francis out of that game to win? That was uncalled for Bruce) – and Steph had the crowd roaring with a jumper that cut the lead to 1 with 4 minutes to go. And then the Spurs decided the New York fans had enough fun and they put the game on ice. Your New York Knicks. The Spurs did whatever they wanted on the way to building their 19 point lead. Tony Parker had 24 and 10 and Tim Duncan amused himelf by scoring on Curry and Frye at will until he probably thought it was too cruel to keep embarrassing them. The Spurs hit 13 of 23 threes for the game, and Bones Barry hit 5 of them. He’s averaging 3.3 made threes per game and shooting them at an 83 percent clip. That is… awesome.
CHICAGO 110 MILWAUKEE 85
The Bulls flashed their opening night form again and then some, racking up 110 points. Ben Gordon led the way with 37 and 9. For someone that’s considered the black hole from which passes never emerge, that is alot of assists. Michael Redd and Charlie V did what they could, scoring 47 of the Bucks 85 points, but they didn’t have much help. Ben Wallace took only 5 shots, so his dream of playing both ends hasn’t come true yet. He did have 3 steals, 5 blocks, and 10 boards, meaning that he’s still Ben Wallace.
SACRAMENTO 93 MINNESOTA 81
Ron Artest gave KG a little tap on a breakaway layup for the Twolves that cut the Kings lead to 9. No foul was called, but KG limped off the court, and when he was out the Kings built up a safe enough lead for them to hold on to. Ron Ron led the way for Sacramento in their home debut with 22, and Kevin Martin continued his early season scoring surge with 19. Mike James led the T-Wolves with 23, and I won’t be making any Mike Jones who? references anymore because there is now a much more famous Mike Jones than the rapper.
LA CLIPPERS 102 PORTLAND 89
The Clippers went with the balanced attack and after a slow start, handled the Blazers pretty easily. They only got 8 points from Elton Brand, who after the game said “I feel bad for the people who have fantasy teams, but that’s about it.” On the other end of the spectrum, Zach Randolph put up 35 and 13 on 11 of 17 shooting and 13 of 15 from the line to go with 3 blocks and 2 steals. Other than assists, he was the fantasy stud of the night. His team lost. And why is the phrase “fantasy stud” so commonly used? Brandon Roy scored 3 points and Jarret Jack is getting a lot of run.