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Friday, January 6th, 2012 at 8:35 am  |  87 responses

Post Up: Blaze Of Glory

Portland still tops in the West, plus Bosh beats ATL without LBJ and DWade.

by Abe Schwadron | @abe_squad

Four games to talk about, as the Spurs made quick work of the Mavs and the Blazers beat the Lakers, while the Heat needed almost four hours (and the entire first half of the Portland-L.A. game) to put away the Hawks. Then again, the world was introduced to Ivan Johnson and his diamond grill, a welcome reward for watching the longest game of the year to date.

Heat 116, Hawks 109

Just because a game goes 3 overtimes, we don’t have to pretend it was a good one. Atlanta and Miami wanted to remind us of that last night, it seems. Without Dwyane Wade (foot) and LeBron James (ankle), the Heat looked to the last man standing of the Big Three, Chris Bosh, to lead. And he came through with 33 points and 14 rebounds, even delivering a clutch three-pointer with 0.6 seconds left to send this game to overtime. That’s when things got ridiculous, extending to three extra periods, until finally Miami pulled away in the third—thanks in part to ATL’s 0-for-7 shooting with 2 turnovers in that frame. It’s a back-breaking loss for the Hawks, especially considering it was the first night of a back-to-back-to-back, and it comes on the heels of a breakthrough win against the Heat earlier in the week. Mario Chalmers finished with 29 points, 8 assists, 7 rebounds and 3 steals in a team-high 49 minutes for Miami, who also got timely contributions from Terrel Harris (9 points, 14 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 highlight in 42 minutes) and Udonis Haslem (14 points, 11 rebounds in 46 minutes) off the bench. LeBron and Wade liked what they saw, while playing cheerleader in dapper digs. Atlanta’s Joe Johnson scored 20 and Josh Smith put up a 17 and 13 double-double, but all the chatter about the Hawks revolved around Ivan Johnson, the mean-mugging reserve who sparked ATL in the third quarter with his high motor and bruising physical play. He had 13 points, 4 boards before fouling out in 21 minutes, Reggie and Chuck damn near anointed him an All-Star on the TNT broadcast, and he was trending on Twitter before the game went final.

Spurs 93, Mavericks 71

What a weird game. The Spurs jumped out to a 31-17 lead after one quarter and a 55-29 lead at the half, as San Antonio cruised to their fifth win on the season behind 17 points from Matt Bonner. Yes, the Red Rocket was the game’s leading scorer, in 25 minutes off the bench. San Antonio protected the basketball—just 8 turnovers—and Tony Parker ran the show with 11 points and 8 assists. The best for Dallas? Hard to say anyone was “best” at anything, since the Mavs never led, made only 27 of 77 shots in the game and only two players scored in double figures—Jason Terry (12) and Delonte West (10). The Mavs shot 1-of-19 from the three-point line for the game, and were outscored 48-3 from beyond the arc. Dirk Nowitzki scored just 6 points on 3-of-11 shooting, his lowest offensive output since December 2009. Jason Kidd left the game near the end of the first quarter and did not return, citing a back injury. Dallas drops to 3-5 and 0-3 on the road.

Kings 103, Bucks 100

Brandon Jennings had 31 points and 7 assists but the Bucks blew a 21-point lead and Sacramento picked up a win just hours after head coach Paul Westphal was fired and replaced by Keith Smart. The Kings outscored Milwaukee 35-18 in the fourth quarter, and Tyreke Evans scored 26 points (plus 10 rebounds and 5 assists) including this ridiculous scoop shot in traffic to net SacTown the inspired victory. Despite shooting just 4-for-21 from three-point range and losing Chuck Hayes to a nasty dislocated shoulder, Sacramento ended the game on a 22-6 run and survived thanks to four straight clutch Evans free throws in the the final minute. The Bucks shot 51 percent from the field as a team and got 18 points and 9 boards from Drew Gooden, but Milwaukee was outrebounded 55 to 31 without Andrew Bogut in the lineup, who missed his second straight game for undisclosed personal reasons. Marcus Thornton led all scorers with 27 points—he’s scored 23+ points in 34+ minutes in three of the Kings’ last four games.

Trail Blazers 107, Lakers 96

First things first—after not noticing Atlanta’s crowd for an entire game plus three OTs, you have to appreciate the Portland fans. They’re crazy, and crazy loud! And based on how their team is playing to start 2012, they have plenty to be happy about. The Blazers sit atop the Western Conference at 5-1, and already have wins over Denver, Oklahoma City and now the Lakers. Portland is playing uptempo (they got up 81 shots last night) but protect the ball (just 4 turnovers), and also have the ability to clamp down on defense (L.A. shot 0-for-11 from three-point range). After going 7-for-7 in the first half, Andrew Bynum was held to 2-of-9 shooting in the second half. He still had a big game, with 21 points and 12 boards, but LaMarcus Aldridge had 28 and 10 and the Marcus Camby-Kurt Thomas combo was enough up front to bother the Lakers inside. Kobe did Kobe, finishing with 30 points (13-24 from the field) and 8 rebounds, but it looked like his wrist was bothering him, and he forced some shots in the second half. Bryant matched up against Gerald Wallace for most of the game, and Wallace went for 31 points and played with the kind of relentless toughness Portland hoped for when acquiring him last season. Wes Mathews scored 16 and Jamal Crawford added 17 for the Blazers, who get a rematch with the only team that’s beaten them this season—the Clippers—on Tuesday at home, with games against Phoenix and Cleveland in between.

Line of the Night: Gerald Wallace goes for 31 points on 13-19 FG, plus 5 rebounds and 2 steals.

Moment of the Night: The shot that started the marathon in Atlanta.

Quote of the Night: Charles Barkley should be forever mic’d up.

Tonight: Man, it’s already been two weeks?! I’m done for the week, but Mr. Walsh will be in the building to recap the dozen games on tap for your viewing pleasure on Friday night. I’ll be watching New York at Washington, and probably tweeting under the influence about it, while ESPN has Bulls-Magic at 8 and Blazers-Suns after that. Other games of note include the Rubios vs. the Kyries in Minnesota, Pacers at Celtics and Rockets-Thunder. Have a good weekend, guys and gals. Now let me go get some sleep!

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  • Myung

    Terrible loss by the Hawks last night. No excuses. Just a garbage performance against what amounted to the 2009-2010 Toronto Raptors. Hats off to the Heat for being the better team. Our last two losses were against (arguably) the two best teams in the NBA, but when one is shooting poorly (26 first half points for Chicago) and the other is playing without its two best players, you’ve got to win at least one of those two games. Last night, we were coming off a night of rest AND we were playing at home. Seriously. No excuses. It was just a bad performance by an inconsistent team, and we are now a national laughingstock. I hated hearing all of Chuck’s harsh words on TNT, but honestly, I can’t say we didn’t deserve it. I could stomach the Chicago loss; last night’s was ridiculous, embarrassing, and pathetic. Being a Hawks fan is bad for your health.

  • MUBWAR

    line of the night gerald wallace? bosh had 33 14 5a 2s 2block shots. the Bosh hate is astonishing

  • http://www.twitter.com/nflem41 Nicolas Fleming

    Bosh scored 33 in 2 games, Wallace had 31 in one.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Cheryl

    Can’t wait for the spit-filled scream from Bosh when the final seconds of the final game of the 2011/2012 season: “What can you say? What can you say to me now?” (ala-KG on winning his ‘chip)

  • MUBWAR

    best line of the night
    Reggie: the hawks took a black eye tonight
    Chuck: I wish I could push them in the other eye

  • http://www.slamonline.com J

    There’s a big 3 in south beach.

  • http://www.slamonline.com J

    Wow i’m impressed by these Blazers. Only 4 turnovers!
    Also i think according to nba dot com shane battier played 49 mins. tied with chalmers. Its 48 mins for chalmers hear instead.

  • http://nba.com/celtics lights out

    damn. four turnovers. against a team whose coach is defensive-minded. very impressive.

  • http://www.slamonline.com J

    *here

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Ahh, the Hawks we know and love are finally back. Phew, I was getting worried that I didn’t understand the NBA anymore, but now things are as they should be.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    And Abe, you said Marcus Thornton led all scorers right after saying that Jennings had 31. I think you meant all Kings scorers.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Finally, Mario Chalmers had a nice looking line, but dude has basketball Tourette’s.
    He plays normally, even well for long stretches, then he has a ridiculous brain fart that just comes out of nowhere and makes no sense whatsoever. It’s baffling man. He does a whole bunch of good things and then does something so mindnumbingly stupid that you have to question his entire understanding of the game. I’ve never seen a player like that before.

  • RobbieJay

    you know why atlanta lost? FREE THROWS.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Nah, I mean that hurt, but they lost because their offense still consists of nothing but isolations for players who don’t have the skill set to dominate good defenders. Period.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    Anyone wanna keep talking about how Chris Bosh isn’t a top 5 PF in the league now? Yeah, that’s what I thought…

  • AD

    bosh was doin this in toronto..

  • Gregg

    Somebody needs to tell the Hawks to not shoot 80 jumpshots a game…did they not notice that when they drove to the basket they either got fouled or made a shot? And when Josh Smith shot it from 18 feet it never went in? Sheesh!!

  • Dat Dude

    @Wayno: who said he wasn’t?

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    @ Dat Dude – Have you seen all the Chris Bosh bashing that goes on on this site? It’s turned me, a total non miami heat fan into a Chrsi Bosh appologist…

  • Jay

    We need more Charles Barkley announcing games. I thought he was fantastic last night.

  • http://nba.com/celtics lights out

    hey, after seeing the picture next to the Heat-Hawks recap, who doesn’t wanna punch Mario Chalmers?

  • T-Ray

    Great games last night! Bosh was on his Raptors ish. The Hawks were…yeah but anyway great game. The Blazers are scary. After watching the game I hope LA doesn’t match up with them in the first round could be an upset potentially. Although Kobe was pretty efficient with his shooting at times he looked to force his shot.

  • LA Huey

    Wayno’s right. Amar’e, Blake, Dirk, Love, LaMarcus, Z-Bo, Pau, and KG all regularly get named by the commenters here before Bosh. Albeit, these are the commenters who are new and/or regularly make stupid claims.

  • LA Huey

    Juwan Howard nearly posted a trillion. He had one foul that got in the way.

  • http://www.twitter.com/nflem41 Nicolas Fleming

    LA, are you saying that Amare, Dirk, Pau nor Love are better than Chris Bosh?

  • http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/chicago-bulls-talk/2011 Diesel

    Yeah LA, everyone on your list IS better than Bosh with the exception of Pau and KG

  • LA Huey

    I’d take Dirk and Pau over Bosh but not Amar’e over Love. Neither STAT or the Stat Chaser play ANY defense.

  • http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/chicago-bulls-talk/2011 Diesel

    The guy scores 33 points in a triple overtime game and that somehow puts any ‘haters’ in their place? It’s officially a big 3 now? Mario Chalmers scored 4 points less on 6 fewer shots. Is it officially a Big 4 now?

  • http://www.chicagonow.com/blogs/chicago-bulls-talk/2011 Diesel

    What about Aldridge? Blake?

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Lamarcus Aldridge is the 2nd or 3rd best PF in the NBA. I have, Dirk, Pau, Lamarcus, Bosh as the top tier of PF’s right now.

  • Nella

    The crowd in the ATL was a joke. Half the 100 level was missing. At first I was thinking they knew Bron/Wade was injured so they didn’t bother showing, but that’s giving alot of them credit for even checking up on that.

  • ThaWindy

    Line of the night.
    “Hawks are a team full of role players with no star”

    I love when Kobe gets pissed for not getting the ball, then that players scores.

  • ThaWindy

    ^player

  • AdamD

    That was a horrible loss for the hawks, they were very flat to start, i think its mental, heat without two best players so they think it’s easy. As someone has already said free throws really hurt us, for the second game in a row. Shot 1 of 4 in the final minute in Chicago and something like 67% last night. Woeful. Josh smith can’t shoot jumpers, or rather shouldn’t. He does have the ability to hit the occasional 18ft shot, as he did to tie the game last night, but he is good going to the basket and should focus on that rather than settling.

  • T-Ray

    Am I the only one who at one point during the game thought Miami was moving the ball better without Wade and James?

  • T-Money

    Ivan plays with a top grill. That is all.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Oh and I really underrated Ray Felton with the Blazers. I was worried about his shot selection, but it seems like that guy is just a winner. Makes the right play or pass the majority of the time. 2 or 3 questionable shots a game aren’t going to hurt them right now.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    Maaan, Felton’s speed was killing us, but we barely beat Portland when there at home anyway, and I was more pissed that I had to miss the ENTIRE first half because of the Hawks-Heat game.

  • robb

    The Blazers played great, Aldrige is so underrated, there was no D for Felton and Crash played as intense as ever, they took care of the ball incredibly well, only 4 turnovers (the same as Kobe). And what about Bosh? he was clutch as hell, but yeah, the Hawks defeated themselves, they had no reason to lose that game.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    1.) Dirk
    2.) Pau
    3.) LA
    4.) Bosh

  • http://shinefluid@aol.com yada

    cause bosh dropped 33 in a 2 OT game hes a great pf now?

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    He has been for quite some time, he just happens to be playing with 2 of the best players in the world…I’m thinking alot of players stats would drop in that situation.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    naw, he has been a top 4-5 PF in the league for the last 5 years.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Felton adds a new dimension to that POR team that AMiller could never have; speed. His ability to push the tempo fits perfectly with guys like LA, GWall, Wes Math and JCrawford. He was killing the lakers last night even after they made a basket because since their defense revolves around the bigs ability to protect the paint, he was able to get down the court before Gasol/Bynum. POR is going to be very good but I’m not buying into the hype just yet. I want to see them play teams like MIA, CHI, OKC and even LA later on in the season before I crown them beasts of the West.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Told ya nbk, jp man. Man I gotta toss Love up there in the top 3 PF. He is the 3rd best to me.Dirk, Pau, Love, LA, Bosh, every one else. Z-Bo has an argument for being in the top 5. Amare’ doesn’t. I know you guys don’t feel me on Love, but i’m telling you, this kid will beast like he is in any setting on any team. He’s allot better on defense this year also.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    CB is not a great PF. He’s a very good one but great…..nah.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    You did Lake. You were completely right about Felton.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    Love is a stats guy, not a winner.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    imo, there is only one PF that even can play at a “great” level this season. And that’s Dirk. Pau and Aldridge are very good, but neither are going to do anything that makes us talk about how great they are.
    .
    .
    @Lakeshow, Love is still a selfish defensive player. He provides little to no help to his teammates on that end. Which is why I have him in the 2nd tier of PF’s. He also has some trouble scoring in one on one situations. I mean some guys he has no real issues with, but long strong pf’s give him trouble in isolation.

  • LA Huey

    People like marginalize Bosh’s ability because he plays with two guys that are top 5 in the L while Bosh is ONLY top 5 at his very competitive position.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Wayno: Was Bosh a stats guy or a winner in Toronto? nbk, yes he does snatch boards from people and doesn’t help on D. But being selfish about grabbing rebounds is always a good thing imo. He needs to work on the defensive end allot, but he is the only PF that can do step back 3′s and make them at an incredible rate. He is the only player in the L(weather selfish or not) that grabs 15+ boards a game. He has as good a midrange jumpshot as any PF not named Dirk. He is as good a passer as any PF not named Pau. He has his flaws, but I can name numerous flaws on each PF. I don’t fault anyone who has Love out of the top 3 because I think that on any given night the Top 5 PF’s can be the best PF in the L. Is Dirk or Z-bo any better on defense than Love? I don’t think so. Pau is charmin soft as we all know. He can disappear in a game and give you a ghostly 7 and 5 stat line. I understand how much winning and defense means, but despite those two negatives about him I still think he’s that good that he is the 3rd best right now.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    Bosh isn’t a great PF, but he’s very good.

  • LA Huey

    LakeShow, while I very much disagree about Love being a top 5 PF, I can appreciate your explanation about Love.

  • http://nba.com GP23

    So I’m guessing KG and Duncan are not worthy of being top PF’s anymore?

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Shout out to LA Huey a la Philosopher.

  • LA Huey

    GP23, I love KG and Duncan. And it’s sad seeing them no longer at their peaks, but facts is facts. They’re no longer elite level players.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    DHow’s grabbing 16+ boards this season.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    I meant to average over a season recently. We’ll see where we are at half way through the season with the rebounding #’s.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Dirk is a better defender then Love, yes. And he’s a better offensive player. Z-Bo (imo) is not as good as Love at basketball in general so I don’t think who’s better on D (Love) is really relevant to this discussion.

  • chingy

    KG and Duncan are not top 5…maybe top 10. As some mentioned, people sleep on Bosh cus he plays with the two of the flashiest/best players in the world. It’s like, there’s a girl who’s the hottest in the school but when you pair her up with a Miranda Kerr or a Kate Upton, the school girl’s got nothing.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    What makes you think Dirk is better? They are about equal when you factor in rebounding to me. Dirk is slightly better, but grabs 5 to 7 boards less per game.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    My problems with Love are two fold.
    I’m not sure he can stop his man from going off. And I’m not sure he can go get you a bucket when you definitely need one.
    He’s a better rebounder than almost every other starter in the League. He has nice range on his jumper, and is a good passer.
    But, the defense and the lack of one on one scoring is troubling.
    Bosh can rebound, not like Love, but he’s not horrible like say Amare. Bosh can score on his own man. Not as well as say Dirk, or maybe even Aldridge, but much closer to that level than Love. Bosh hits jumpers. Bosh passes well. Bosh plays very good team defense. Bosh has shown that he can get wins as “the man” although his team won’t be that good.
    Bosh is better, to me.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    1. Dirk
    2. Pau
    3. Aldridge
    4. Randolph
    5. Bosh
    4 and 5 are interchangeable, while I’m really only giving Pau the #2 spot because of reputation and skills… I don’t see him putting up better numbers than anyone on that list except Chris Bosh (and Zach Randolph, if he doesn’t play), because Andrew Bynum is now the Lakers’ second option.

  • JeffinPDX

    I love that fans and the league woke up to LaMarcus last year and he is just getting started this year. The guy had to skip the abbreviated training camp and is just starting to get his legs. His ability to hit from 15 and spins to the right or left on the block are phenomenal. He is the face of the Blazer franchise. We are blessed to have so many talented players on this team and am relishing them showing up the national media from their earlier predictions this year (albeit very early in the season).

    Although we are in the same conference, I hope Dirk turns things around. He is NOT playing elite basketball yet this year, but it’s still early. Sad that Dallas threw this season away to go big in free agency during the summer.

    Bosh? He’s good. Better than LA? Not even close.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    BTW Bynum is straight ballin’ right now. Though it’s nice to a see a legit 7-foot center playing like an actual center, it’s also really sad to see people’s defenses struggling against Andrew freaking Bynum because the NBA literally has NO other centers… (Dwight Howard excluded)…

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    You want me to show you advanced stats (like how Nowitzki holds his opponent to less production in the same conference, or how Nowitzki gives up less points while forcing more turnovers? or how Dallas’ defense without Dirk gets worse, while Minnesota’s without Love get’s better) ? I mean I can explain how he’s a better post defender and more effective against a wider range of players. But that will just sound like an opinion that won’t really change anything…and y’all hate when I use stats to support my point of view so lol idk how to respond in an effective way. Or we can just agree to disagree?

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Fair points AP. I disagree that he is any less of a one on one force than any PF except Dirk. He doesn’t have the back to the basket game that LA, Z-Bo, Pau have, but he seems to not need it right now. Dirk is also not a very good back to the basket player. That doesn’t stop him from scoring iso very easily and I think Love can also. Dirk has some back to the basket moves and they work sometimes, but so does Love. I agree that Bosh plays good team defense and he has gotten some solid W’s in T-dot that he earned, but he doesn’t rebound or have the range that Love has. Yes he can make the 3 but I would think he has less than 10 or 20 on his career where as Love is seemingly becoming the best (or one of the best) 3 point shooting forward/center in the L. No beef with anyone who thinks Bosh is better though. Randolph I do have beef with though haha. He is worse on defense and doesn’t score at the clip it looks like K-Love is going to be. He wasn’t a “winner” till the Grizz made that jump so I do have K-Love for sure above Randolph now. Although I love Randolph’s game also. Blake is still more flash than than anything, and Amare’ can step away from this discussion till he ops to rebound and play some semblance of D.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Haha nbk, cool, Dirk is better on D, but i’m going to go with slightly better. That’s just from me watching both of them. I think Love is improving quite a bit on D so far this year. We’ll see if he can get out of the defensive stinkers category.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Lakeshow a few rebuttals.
    1. Zbo wasn’t a winner because he refused to pass or play defense. Completely refused. He has been a BEAST for years though, something all hardcore fans knew. Garnett and Duncan have both sung his praised for years, but his problems were that he refused to play a team game, which limited his efficiency and effectiveness. He has been doing everything he’s doing now for years.
    2. Love does not score well one-on-one. He hits jumpers. He gets put backs. He occasionally makes a nice move on the block. But, Love is not the guy you run your offense through. He’s not the guy you just post up and say “Get us a bucket big fella.” He’s not the guy who is going to create a good look for your team in crunch time. He doesn’t have that sort of game yet. To be honest, he’s not alone. Good players like Blake Griffin can’t really do that yet. In Blake’s case it’s due to his lack of a great jumper and post game, in Love’s case it’s his lack of a post game and athletic issues.
    Also, you can’t argue that Dwight’s rebounds don’t count because they are not for the entire year, and then count Love’s scoring average through five games.
    His last year end scoring average is 20 ppg, if you’re using the year end number for boards, use it for scoring. And when you use that, it’s obvious that ZBo can score at that clip. And if you watch the games, it’s painfully obvious that Randolph’s offense game is on an entirely different level from Love’s. Not even the same discussion.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    BGriff is far from flash. He may be a terrible defender and lacks a go-to/one-on-one post move but so does KLove. Griff is a top-5 rebounder, one of the best passers at the 4 position, his stamina and energy is unmatched at that position and his underrated ball-handling ability makes him one of the few bigs that can lead a fast break on his own.
    Don’t confuse his ability to put cats on a poster to him being nothing but flash. He’s one of those lunch pail type of guys.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Good on you for calling me out on my double sided-ness with the year end stats and the first 5 games stats I was using. I still think Love will lead the L in rebounding again this year despite Dwight beasting early with the 16rbs per. I disagree on Love and Randolph. IMO they are equal scorers. Completely different scorers, but equal in terms of overall offensive production. Yes Z-bo is a monster on the block and has a silky soft mid range also, but he cannot hit the 3 pointer unless he is wide open. Love can handle quite well for a PF and he will dribble around and get a good look at a jumper from anywhere on the court. Z-Bo is pretty exclusive to posting up and hitting open J’s. I see Love as a guy who you can say “Get us a bucket big fella.” He may not do it in typical big man, low block fashion, but that can be a good thing. The low block is not where you go to get a quick shot off with seconds on the clock. You can’t always back your man down and get a bucket with 3 seconds remaining. What you can do is dribble and shoot a jumper. Love can do that. Z-Bo can’t. I think Love with out a doubt will out score Randolph every year for the rest of Z-BO’s career. Z-Bo is still very good, but he is not getting any better obviously. Love will be getting allot better.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Come on you can’t honestly think ZBo and Love are equal scorers? Have you not ever watched either guy in one on one situations? Minnesota plays at an extremely fast pace, and they play a wide-open game. ZBo doesn’t have that luxury at all. (I do however think Love is the better players as previously stated, just not a better scorer, at all)

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    I think Randolph is a better one on one scorer, but no I don’t think one is any better than the other when all skills are put on the table. Randolph does things Love can do and vise versa.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Agree with your post completely JTaylor. Still say that flash adds allot to his appeal when you take a step back and look at him.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    fair enough. I disagree but I respect that.

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

    Carlos boozer is clearly the best pf in the league.

  • LA Huey

    Matt Bonner would eat Carlos Boozer for breakfast

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Lakeshow
    I can’t believe you think ZBo and Love are equal scorers. Unless Love has unveiled some stuff this year I’ve not noticed, that’s almost impossible.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Have you watched him this year AP? I think he probably has a few new tricks you haven’t seen.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    I watched some games. They were not running offense through him when I watched. He was catching in the high post and passing, which he’s very good at, or he was spotting up on pick and pops.
    He wasn’t facing up, he wasn’t backing cats down. To me, being a scorer means can you get buckets when the other team is trying to stop your from scoring. Like concentrating on you.
    Love has great skills with the jumper. That’s a great skill to have as a big. But, I don’t feel like you can just iso love on the block or wing and expect good results..

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    in the 4 games I’ve watched Love just looks like a quicker more confident version of the same player he was last season. He gets no iso-plays run for him, and frankly has just as much of the initial offense run through him as goes through Darko. Kevin Love obviously finishes more plays, but he isn’t being used in the high-post like I expected when Adelman took over. He hasn’t shown me anything new this season.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    I didn’t see some of the low block post moves and the ridiculous step back 3′s as I have seen already this year. Your right nbk in that he is virtually the same player, but he has added some nice small things and confidence means a whole heck of allot imo. AP, your correct that he doesn’t get plays and iso’s called for him, but that’s because he is able to get you (currently) 25, 15, without that. They don’t have any iso players except B-easy. And he’s awful. I do think Love is very capable of being a go to type player. If not now, soon. Dudes got skills man. I also have seen a nice little running hook. It’s not go-to-guy material yet, but you can tell he’s working on those 1 on 1 moves and will be perfecting them this season.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    He was hitting those same shots last season. He just wasn’t as confident in taking them as he seems to be this year. I think losing that weight really lifted up his ego.

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

    Does kevin love rotate on defense and close out on shooters now?

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    No

  • Hursty

    Love’s hit a bunch of step-back 3′s this year. Didn’t see that last year.

  • http://dsjfklfl.com Jukai

    Love has also shown flashes of really great post moves. Turn arounds, hooks. His offensive game has really, really improved. I don’t think people realize this.
    His defense, though, is uhm… yeah, it’s the same.

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