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Sunday, November 28th, 2010 at 9:00 am  |  60 responses

Smells like “D” Spirit

While Dwight gets his clutch on.

by Anton Kudriavtsev/@TheDiesel

Hawks 99, Knicks 90

The Hawks were able to turn around a ship of poor effort in a win over the Knicks. Atlanta got out to an early lead and maintained sharp play as they snap New York’s five-game winning streak. Jamal Crawford led the Hawks with 21 points off the bench and was helped by Al Horford’s 17 points and 9 rebounds.  As Mike Fratello broke it down, the Knicks made elementary mistakes such as not picking up their defensive assignments after substitutions which further solidified Atlanta’s run game. The Hawks kept their energy levels up, turnovers down, and took advantage of some poor execution on the part of the Knicks. Amar’e finished with 24 points and 10 boards.

Magic 100, Wizards 99

Dwight Howard

Without John Wall in the line-up, Gilbert Arenas and Nick Young were given a very temporary licenses to shoot against the Magic. Arenas and Young combined for 62 points (31 and 21, respectively) in an entirely winnable game for the Wizards. Washington led by one point with 13 seconds to go but Dwight Howard was able to corral a Nelson miss and bank in the game-winning bucket. Howard’s 32 points are a season-high and he should be proud of his offensive advancement, as in previous season the center would be almost demoted to a 4th quarter role player. He also scored the last six points in the game for the Magic.

Grizzlies 86, Cavaliers 92

The Cavaliers fought to another hard-earned win as they defeated the Grizzlies. Mo Williams led all scorers with 25 points, in addition to his 12 assists. Memphis collectively fell apart in the last two quarters, with Zach Randolph limited to 13 points on 6-for-16 shooting. As the Cavs outscored the Grizz 30-16 in the 4th quarter, the momentum swung in their favour and they didn’t look back. Cavs head coach Byron Scott has emphasized a more running approach to the offense, as evident by the Bolt-like drills during training camp which the players have admitted to giving them more lift in the 4th quarter of games. The dividends have begun to pay off as Cleveland took a 24-8 fast-break advantage.

Nets 86, Sixers 102

The Sixers were able to win in a rarely convincing manner, topping the Nets. Jrue Holiday led Philly with 20 points and 13 assists while Brook Lopez had a mini break-out game for New Jersey with 25 points and 6 rebounds. The Sixers held off a late surge by the Nets by turning up the tempo of their defense, using the length of Thaddeus Young and Iguodala to lock down the perimeter. Execution wise, the story favoured Philly with 29 team assists and only 5 turnovers.

Warriors 104, Wolves 94

Who said Monta Ellis is selfish? Ellis had 26 points, 10 assists, 7 steals, and 4 rebounds as he led his Warriors over the Wolves. Golden State shot over 50% from the floor and forced 21 Minnesota turnovers (including 16 steals) on their way to an 8-9 record. David Lee returned from whatever monsters rule Wilson Chandler’s mouth and had a 10 point, 6 rebound night. For the Wolves, Beasley led the team in scoring again with 28 points, and Love added 21points and 22 rebounds. The Warriors dominated from the 3rd quarter onwards, with a 60% shooting in the quarter and capitalizing on lazy passes from the Wolves. Dorrell Wright also had a career-high 30 points (including a franchise-best 9 three-pointers made). With Lee fully healthy, I’m looking forward to what this Golden State team can put together in terms of a playoff push later in the season.

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  • http://kb24.com Bigi

    Isn’t 31+21=52?

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    Danilo Gallinari, Wilson Chandler, and Toney Douglas simply need to be more consistent right now for the Knicks to win. It will happen over time, along with the Knicks depth improving when they get a healthy Kelenna Azubuike worked into the rotation. Another thing that can’t be discounted, is how important a healthy Ronny Turiaf is to the Knicks coalescing at both ends of the court. Some players just hold units together, a la a Kenyon Martin for the Denver Nuggets at the defensive end of the floor. At the end of the day, though I’m disappointed with another Knicks L at MSG, it’s a good sign to see the team showing heart and making a game of it despite digging themselves into a 18 point first half hole. The Knicks will bounce back on the road at Detroit with a W, and improve to 7-4 away from The World’s Most Famous Arena!

  • ShadiestBen

    After watching last nights game the Heat just don’t look like a very good basketball team. As of right now the pieces don’t fit, Anton you hit the nail on the head with body language from Bron but I think D wade is doing it too. The only time I see any passion from him is when he argues a no call (which he does about 10 times a game so far this year).

  • ShadiestBen

    And the fake Eboy is annoying, spinmaster general where are you when your team needs you most?

  • http://simonlawy888.blogspot.com Simon Lawy

    Cavaliers needs a lil respect

  • http://www.slamonline.com J

    MMMOOOO GGGGOOOOTTTTIIII

  • The Philosopher

    It takes a gift for one to consistently possess wit.
    Anton Kudriavtsev is gifted.

  • The D Train

    Smile, Crawf, ‘Igmatic and Co. Your boys from the Chi earned it. 4-3 on the Circus trip is nothing to sneeze at, especially down Boozer, and a Melo jumper away from 5-2.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    9-8…

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    “The definition of a great player is that when he is not impacting his team in his usual manner (scoring), he asserts himself in other facets of the game.” This applies to everyone except Kobe Bryant and his 15 rebounds in Game 7 of the NBA Finals last season.

  • JTaylor21

    Way to point out BS Anton, what about DWade’s body language which has been much worse. Dude has being acting like a female lately and you can tell that he’s trying to out-shine bron at all cost instead of trying to play together, but no one wants to point that out because he has a chip and gets a free pass like BCrawford said. Wade has sucked a** this year and seems to be playing as bad as I’ve ever seen him play, same with bron to a certain extent but wade has come up shorter than a blonde’s memory span in big games.

  • JTaylor21

    “The definition of a great player is that when he is not impacting his team in his usual manner (scoring), he asserts himself in other facets of the game.” This applies to everyone except LeBron and his 19 rebounds/10 assists in Game 6 vs the Celtics.

  • max

    @jtaylor21 did it hurt?

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    JTaylor21: Unlike Dirk Nowitzki last night and Kobe Bryant in Game 7 last June, LeBron James lost Game 6. What a weak attempt at trying to make a point.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Nick tha Quick

    Minutes of the Heat players only meeting after last night’s loss:#1. “Have more fun” playing the game. #2. Get CB more facetime on TV for halftime and endgame interviews. #3. Read and discuss excerpts from The 5 Love and Body Languages.#4.Agree that Spo is as clueless about offense as JTaylor21 is about basketball.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    I hope JTaylor has eaten his words from preseason when he said Dwight would be a liability in crunch time. Good call on that one.

  • A.

    @Bryan Crawford:
    “The definition of a great player is that when he is not impacting his team in his usual manner (scoring), he asserts himself in other facets of the game.”
    While you are correct in stating that LeBron did not win that game, it is not fair to JTaylor21 for you to ignore what he said. Nowhere in that quote does it mention winning the game. While I agree that winning the game is the most important thing, the quote simply says that great players assert themselves in other aspects of the game when their primary option is not helping the team.
    In that case, JTaylor21′s point still stands. LeBron DID impact that game with his rebounding and passing. Mentioning that he did not win the game does not take away the fact that he did impact the game other than with his scoring.

  • http://twitter.com/smileyoufckers Bryan

    The point was that even though Kobe didn’t score , he did what it took to win. Lebron didn’t do what it took to win. They needed buckets in that game and he played passive.

  • JTaylor21

    ^STINKING PILE OF BULLLLLSH*T!!!!!!!!!

  • http://www.twitter.com/TheDiesel Anton

    @Bigi – we sittin here, I supposed to be a franchise player and we talkin bout math, man.
    @JTaylor – Wade is not excluded by any stretch, him and Bron don’t seem to want to mesh at all. Miami makes the biggest runs when one of them is one the bench. And if stats are enough to convince you that LeBron gave his absolute all in that series, I’m afraid we can’t have a meaningful discussion about it.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    @A: The “context” of that quote was in winning the game if you read the rest of the paragraph as it relates to the Mavs/Heat game.

  • JTaylor21

    Anton, I know that bron didn’t give 100% in that series but to act like he was out there just lollygagging is foolish. You can’t just “fool” around and have a monster trip dub, it’s not that easy. All I’m saying is that for bron to have a way better final game than Kobe vs the same team and STILL lose, that should tell you all you need to know about each player’s supporting cast. People can’t praise kobe’s stats then turnaround and not acknowledge what bron did vs the exact same team.

  • A.

    @Bryan Crawford:
    While I agree that the context was about winning the game, you just mentioned the quote, therefore taken out of context it can simply mean that a great player is capable of producing in other areas of the game other than scoring. At least, that’s what I understood when I read the quote out of context.
    And I wouldn’t say he played passively. Game 5 was a passive, disinterested LeBron. Game 6 was more of a “OK, I’ll play hard this game”, and they still lost. 19 rebounds against a rabid playoff Celtics team is not being passive and usually 27-19-10 from LeBron equalled a Cavs win, just not against these Celtics. So I can’t agree with that. Dude fought that game, the better team won. That’s all there is to it. The Celtics wanted it more, and they won.
    But to say that he didn’t play hard in Game 6 is not true. If 15 rebounds against the Celtics is playing great, why isn’t 19 rebounds? Only because he lost? I don’t get that reasoning.
    But hey, you are entitled to your opinion and I respect it.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    It doesn’t matter what “Bron did” statistically and that’s the problem. People laud him for his individual stats whether he wins the game or not. Getting a triple-double in a loss…who cares? You still lost.

  • ShadiestBen

    Jtaylor – Because Wade is playing worse than LeBron it doesn’t mean LeBrons awful play is excused.
    You could go the other way with it and say that at least Wade is showing some emotion, Bron is straight faced all game, personally I haven’t seen him like this before.
    Whatever way you look at it Bron hasn’t been playing up to the lofty standards you expect from him, his team is barely above 500 and you can’t complain about the supporting cast this season.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    LeBron’s play isn’t awful. He’s averaging 23.4 points, 5.6 rebounds, 7.9 assists, is shooting 44% from the field, and is leading the NBA in turnovers. He’s playing great! Meanwhile, DWade is averaging 21.3 points, 5.9 rebounds, 4.1 assists, and shooting 44% from the field. Yeah, he sucks.

  • JTaylor21

    Shadiest, I 100% agree with ya; bron has being playing like sh*t so far and probably the worst I’ve ever seen him play but you have to ask yourself why is that. Why is he playing worse than his rookie year? Maybe it has something to do with playing with a new squad, a new system (even though Slostra runs the same BS mike brown ran), and this is the first time in his b-ball life that his ever played alongside a player with equal talent and equal demands. He’s never played with a player that needed 20+ shots, so it’s going to take some time to get used to. Also the comparison between the celts big 3 early success and the heat’s big 3 early failures is flawed based on their coaches. On one hand the celts big 3 had a great coach in Doc, who knew how to bring the best out of each player and played to their strengths while the heat have a Mike Brown clone who runs no offense sets whatsoever and prefers to run a playground one-on-one type offense. The heat’s biggest problem so far is the lack of creative play-calling and that falls directly on Slostra lap.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    Thanks for the shoutout, D Train. I’m happy but would be happier if we had taken that one in Denver. Rose is balling outta control this year, even being a diehard Rose fan I still had to be a little skeptical when he questioned why couldn’t he be MVP. But that’s gone now. As for the Heat, LeBron has had terrible body language his entire career. I usually enjoy watching him play but I have to cringe whenever his immaturity shows. He has yet to grow up emotionally. Him and Wade together doesn’t seem to he working.

  • http://www.need4sheed.com Tarzan Cooper

    gil played great last night. hit many big shots down the stretch, couldnt quite get the win. nick young has been ballin hard recently. props to dwight on a great move to win the game. wheres all the gil haters now? hes played great this year, with and without wall. keep hating. the dirk is hilarious. and anton, CAN YOU STOP DOING 2 PAGES?? whats the point? your posts arent long, so i dont know why you do 2 pages.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    Boston also didn’t have two ball-dominant players on the wings and they didn’t have to blow up their squad to make that Big 3 happen. They had a foundation in place already.

  • ShadiestBen

    Whilst Spo’s offense is unimaginative his defensive schemes got Wade and a bunch of under achievers to a 45 win season last year. A lot of people were raving about the job Spo did. I think the main problem is the pieces are not fitting. Spo has to change the offense so that it accomomadates the big 3. The big 3 then have to start playing like they care. I agree with what you are saying, but as the best player on a team with high expectations you have to accept the blame if it doesn’t work straight away.
    Brian – Preaching to the choir, but using the eye test it seems Wade is playing worse and forcing more. At least it looks like he cares though.

  • ShadiestBen

    Boston’s best two wings are also great 3 point shooters so you have to play them honest.

  • http://www.twitter.com/TheDiesel Anton

    @Tarzan – it’s better for spacing but I should probably go for 1 pagers on Sundays.

  • http://slamonline.com Krishan

    I can’t wait for riley to come back to coaching, so the heat could still continue to wade through a .500 record and we could debunk this heat-are-bad-because-of-spo myth

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    It is obvious now that LeBron doesn’t respect Spoelstra. If I were Spo, I’d bench Bron for one game to both assert the coach’s authority and see how mature his star player is. If LeBron is as competitive as his supporters think, he’d work his butt off next game. Or, he’d behave as I expect: whine because he deserves minutes because he’s LeBron.

  • JTaylor21

    When you have a team with two top-flight athletes and a PF who can run the floor, you run an offense similar to the showtime lakers not the 90′s knicks. It is a waste of bron and wade’s talents to have them running endless PnR and iso-ball BS, there’s a reason why bron left the cavs and came to miami and it was not to play in the exact same offense his former coach ran. The 80s lakers were so succesful due to the fact that Riley let Magic loose in the open-court which played to his greatest strengths; athleticsm, court vision and open-court brilliance. Magic like bron is great in the half-court but on the break, he is LEGENDARY. We all know that no one is better in the open-court than bron, so why not play to his and dwade’s strength.

  • ShadiestBen

    Your right, no one is better than Bron in the full court. He is not great in the half court, however. Good, not great.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    Comparing the Showtime Lakers to the Miami Heat, are we? Incredible. Blasphemy knows no bounds.

  • JTaylor21

    ^You keep on showing that you have an unlimited supply of stupidity. I’m talking about the showtime lakers style of play not their success. How are you or claim to be a “writer” for a basketball mag, again? You must have some incriminating evidence on ryne or something.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Nick tha Quick

    ^^^ Co-sign. When all else fails, compare a ho-hum team to a legendary Laker team. While we at it, that Lakers bench would DESTROY this Heat’s starters.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    When all else fails and you have nothing of substance to contribute, resort to insults. Your lack of actual basketball knowledge and analysis is amazing.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    And it’s amazing that people can be experts on eras of basketball they’re not old enough to have even seen. Thank you Youtube, ESPN Classic, and NBA TV.

  • http://twitter.com/smileyoufckers Bryan

    Nobody wants to face facts about who Lebron is. He developed bad habits in Cleveland that he just can’t break overnight. Is it surprising to anyone that the most success he had was playing with scrubs? He has no idea how to mesh his talents with another player of equal talent, much less two. the biggest myth in sports over the last 7 years is that Lebron James makes his teammates better. He makes scrubs into average players but good players into bad players. It’s a fact as of right now. It may not be popular but truth is truth.

  • JTaylor21

    It is even more amazing that you still remember what you saw at your age, I thought Alzheimer would have kicked in by now.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    ^^I approve this message.

  • http://twitter.com/smileyoufckers Bryan

    Jtaylor next time you copy and paste a disease you can’t spell into a comment, don’t forget the S. Dummy.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    Hey, don’t get mad at me because I’ve forgotten more basketball than you actually know.

  • ShadiestBen

    Jtaylor its obvious you know the game, but when talking Kobe or Bron your comments should be ignored. You can’t see clearly through those LeBron coloured glasses.

  • http://twitter.com/smileyoufckers Bryan

    Larry Hughes year before Lebron : 22 points , 6 boards, 5 assists and 3 steals. 2 years with Bron? 15, 4 , 3.5 and 1.4.

    Shaq went from 18 and 9 to 12 and 7.

    Antawn Jamison went from 22 and 9 to 16 and 8.

    Ricky Davis went from 20-5-5 to 15 and 5 and traded.

    Even wack Damon Jones numbers dropped when he went to play with Lebron. Mo Williams too.

  • ripslam

    IMHO Monta should have got Check My $tats.

  • JTaylor21

    ^Polly want a cracker?
    @Shadiest, I just call it how I see it. Like I stated earlier on this same page, bron has being mud so far this year, so how am I looking through bron-colored shades?

  • ShadiestBen

    Jtaylor – Can’t do anymore than that I. True, it should be applied more to when you talk about Kobe, because lets be honest he could average 40 and the Lakers could win 70 but he would still be doing something wrong.
    Case in point – V Utah he had 14 straight points, Ron Artest’s wide open 3 rattled in and out (on a play where Kobe made the correct pass), yet you were on here saying that he should of took the big shot. If there’s 1 thing Kobe’s proved to us its that he can and will hit big shots.

  • JTaylor21

    Shadiest, I feel where you’re coming from but people have bashed bron in the past for passing up GW shots, so going by the same logic, they have to react the same way to kobe passing up that shot, it doesn’t matter whether or not they think he’s a great clutch player. It’s what have you done for me lately league and lately Melo is the only guy that’s immune to such talk.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    ^^Lately, so is Rudy Gay. Ask Bron, he’ll co-sign that. He saw it up close. Real close…

  • ShadiestBen

    Jtaylor – Yep for those people judging Bron like that the same must be done for Kobe.
    Melo and Mo Williams!

  • ShadiestBen

    Forgot Rudy Gay, he hit a shot to send it into overtime V Boston as well as that shot in Brons eye.

  • Cool Dude

    Lebron = new A.I

  • The D Train

    I LOVE being able to type that the Bulls are playing better than the Heat AND that Rose is playing better than LBJ right now. Long-term, who knows? But right now…yeah, it feels good. All you LBJ and Heat fans that know how great your team (and player) will be, just let us Bulls fans marinate in our happiness for the short-term, eh…

  • bdub

    Hard to see through the hate here.
    I love how the Wiz are looking. McGee starting to ball. Still don’t like Blatche or Flip Saunders, but the future looks good.

  • http://www.need4sheed.com Tarzan Cooper

    Its hard to miss 19 shots , without ot.

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