Cavs/Bulls Game 2 Live Blog
How much love will Cleveland show Mr. Noah?
by Rodger Bohn / @rodgerbohn
What’s going on guys? Checking in here from the Q. City of Cleveland is rockin’ after Joakim Noah’s quotes the other day. For those of you who missed it, here’s what Mr. Noah shot out at the city I’m from:
“I don’t know about Cleveland, man, there is nothing going on,” Noah said Sunday, lamenting the options for his off day on a typical cloudy and chilly spring day. “It’s bad, man.”
When asked if his dislike for the town would motivate him more in the series, Noah continued.
“What, that Cleveland really sucks?” Noah said.
Needless to say, there were numerous t-shirt vendors with expletive filled t-shirts on sale, along with slurs at the Bulls center around the second year center’s lovely facial hair. Needless to say, Joakim is Cleveland’s most hated for the night.
Here are my observations on game 2 of this splendid series:
-Cavs fans already started their array of boos as soon as Joakim Noah’s grill showed up on the jumbotron. It’s clear that Cavs PR is trying to hype this up, and I don’t blame them for adding a little more intrigue to the series.
-Not much in terms of dunks so far in warm-ups. J.J. Hickson rocked a pretty nice 360, but the guys seem more concerned with getting J’s up than putting on a dunk show for the crowd. I mean, it is the playoffs but who doesn’t like to see Bron or D-Rose get their head near rim level?
-I don’t know about you, but I”m def wondering how much the Bulls are going to attack Shaq in the high pick and roll. D-Rose has the jets to explode past anyone off of a pick and Shaq is arguably the worst pick and roll defender in the league…
-I hate to say it, but I wasn’t able to catch a single play of game one! I was on the grind at an AAU tournament for our high school coverage, so excuse me for not having any observations on how things may or may not have changed from game one….
-Game tipping in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1….
-Joakim Noah fouled on the first play and hits both free throws? Ouch Cavs fans.
-One minute into the game and the Bulls have already went at Shaq in the pick and roll twice. For as insanely talented as he is in other aspects of the game, dude refuses to hedge on any pick and roll.
-Matchup of LeBron and Luol Deng brings back a number of memories. For those of you who forgot, these two were the consensus #1 and #2 players in the high school class of 2003. Crazy to think that it was 7 years ago that I was watching them in the McDonald’s All American game here in Cleveland (although Deng was hurt).
-Still wondering when the Cavs will realize that Anthony Parker is more than a spot-up shooter. Guy was the best player in Europe for back to back seasons coming off of tons of screens (a la Rip Hamilton), and now he’s just a shooter. Understand that his role has completely changed, but why not utilize his scoring talents a little more?
-Derrick Rose is really starting to learn the pick and roll. He’s making perfect reads so far and exploding off of screen. Things could get really, really scary if he keeps developing his outside shot.
-Wow, Cavs interior defense is something else. Trio of Z, Shaq, and Varejao controlling the glass and altering tons of shots if you let them sit in the paint.
-I’ll be honest, I was typing my next update when Bron posterized James Johnson. To make things worse, they were coming at the basket right at me…
-Love what Flip Murray brings to the table. Plays good D, can create his own shot, and you can even slide him to the point if need be. One of the finer players ever to come out of a D-2 school, considering that he’s been in the league for nearly a decade now.
-I’ll admit it, I was wrong on Taj Gibson. Thought he should’ve been a second round pick and would be a nice 9th man off of the bench. Then he measured out at 6’10 with a 7’4 wingspan, got picked in the first round, and has become a really solid starting role player in the league.
-Will LBJ flirt with a triple double tonight? 10 points and 5 assists at the end of the first quarter.
-Ben Gordon severely missed with the current lineup that the Bulls have on the floor of Kirk, Noah, Flip, Deng, and Gibson. No one besides Flip can truly create their own shot on a consistent basis. Deng can a little, but he’s not a guy who you’re going to ISO at the top of the key on anyone. Bring back the giant killer!
-Rose with another explosion in pick and roll, this time going away from the pick right at Shaq. Airballed a J on next possession, though.
-Bron getting his J hot. seemingly toying with Deng to get whatever shot he wants. Just hoping that he doesn’t settle for jumper after jumper as the game goes on.
-Someone near me smells like straight B.O. I”m tempted to bust my travel bottle of curve out of my laptop bag and spray the aisle way next to me.
-Roof would have came off if Bron drilled that 3 after the block on Deng dunk attempt.
-Gotta give it to the Bulls. They’re playing super tough herewith Rose on the bench. Flip seems eager to stick it to the Cavs for not offering him a multi-year deal and Noah/Deng/Gibson holding it down in the paint.
-Even though I’m from Cleveland, I’ll admit that the Bulls are one of my favorite teams to play with in NBA 2k10. D-Rose is filthy in that game.
-Mannnn, Joakim Noah is hyped. 12 points in the first half with 5 boards and a couple of blocks? He’s loving every single second of his role in this feature film as the villain.
-52-50 Cavs at the half. Just heard Drake “Over” for the 20th time today. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a hot track but they’re killing it here in Cleveland everywhere you go.
- Guy from Toronto just told me he’d take Noah over Bosh any day of the week? Are you kidding me? Am I out of my mind for thinking he’s nuts, or does this guy have a valid case?
-As I write that, Noah converts a three point play. While he was at the line, the Cavs threw up his quotes on the big screen and a fairly decent “Noah Sucks!” chant erupted.
-Bulls are really reminding me of a lower seeded NCAA team right now. They’re getting a real swag to their step and are getting their confidence going. Definitely a scary team if you let them hang around.
-Derrick Rose with an acrobatic take that made him a YouTube sensation in high school.
-Bron is getting hot after that 3. Triple double prediction isn’t looking too good at the moment after a slow third quarter.
-While he’s surely not the most skilled guy, Joakim Noah steps it up in big games. Playing within himself, hustling all over the court, and converting in traffic. Like the guy a lot. Just not more than Bosh.
-Taj banged on LBJ pretty good. LeBron jumped late for the block and got caught late, just like with Jordan Crawford. Not making excuses though, it was a nice dunk for sure.
-Tied up at 77 at the end of 3. Bulls look like a college team out there with their energetic style of play. Who’s going to step it up in the 4th on both sides?
-Delonte West just hit Kirk Hinrich with the spin cycle for an and-1. Pretty nice take. Let’s just pray he doesn’t hop on his motorcycle tonight!
-Bulls seem to truly want it more than the Cavs. For what they lack in talent, they’re making up for in heart and hustle. They’re getting their hands on all of the 50/50 balls, crashing the glass, and playing solid team defense for the most part.
-Derrick Rose still destroying cats on the pick and roll. If he can force guys to start going over the top on him rather than under every time, we may be talking best point guard in the league in a few years.
-Jamario Moon coming up HUGE for the Cavs. I actually caught him in the CBA a few years ago when going to watch a friend of mine play. Insane how much he’s progressed and matured during his recent tenure in the league.
-Bulls come out of the timeout with a 2-3 zone. Anderson Varejao, of all people, drills a jumper. Let’s see if they stay in the zone for the rest of the game…Nope. Varejao is the zone buster!
-LeBron with a filthy three in Noah’s grill off of a pick and roll switch. Comes back and gets to the line and knocks down a pair. 34, 7, and 8 with 3 mins to go. There’s still a chance for the trip dip. 101-93 Cavs.
-LeBron on fire. 9 straight points with the Cavs up 105-98. Let’s see if he keeps going.
-11 in a row after a SICKKK fadeaway over Hinrich. Showing why he’s MVP. Just got the rock again and missed.
-Many NBA teams also count “hockey assists” (when you pass it to someone, and they pass it to a player who scores) and assist opportunities (if the player would have made the shot, would have counted as an assist). Honestly, LeBron would have well over 20 assists/hockey assists/assist opportunities if you were to tally them all. It’s his passing that sets him apart in my eyes.
-Player of the game for the Cavs: LeBron James with 40 points, 8 boards, 8 dimes, only 2 turnovers. Shot 16-23 from the field, 2-4 from 3PT, and 6-6 from the line. Nuff said.
-Player of the game for the Bulls: Joakim Noah with 25 points, 13 boards, 3 dimes, a steal, and a block. Shot 10-18 from the field and 5-5 from the line. Loved the energy and activity that he provided on both ends of the floor. Noah did so much more than you can see in the box score and showed tons of mental toughness responding in this fashion after the media was killing him for not only his Cleveland comments, but his KG comments. Kudos, Joakim Noah!
-Alright guys, I’m out! Cavs with the 112 to 102 W over the Bulls. My man Bryan Crawford will be in the United Center for games 3 and 4 dropping his knowledge and thoughts on you!