Notes from my league pass surfing.
–The new Cavs announcer, Fred McLeod, sounds way too serious. He has this generic sports nerd sound to him that makes me think he’d call the game the same way if he was sitting at home doing it. And my first impression is that it’s grating. He used to do Pistons games so any Pistons fans that would like to give me a better picture, feel free.
–Drew Gooden grabs an offensive board but then his headband gets knocked over his eyes and he can’t see when he goes up for the putback.
–Shelden Williams hits his second field goal three minutes into his fourth game.
–“Joe Johnson—SHUFFLED THE SHOES!” That’s how you call traveling? Man, I miss Michael Reghi already.
–McLeod’s call of an uncontested LeBron dunk: “He was flying to finish that baby.” Not “He was flying to finish that, baby” ala Dick Vitale but an awkward “He was flying to finish that baby,” said as if LeBron was a superhero that needed to use aviation to kill an infant. What? You think I’m nitpicking? So?
–Consecutive possessions demonstrate that neither Chris Webber nor Samuel Dalembert is particularly adept when it comes to defending Jermaine O’Neal, though that might go without saying.
–Darrell Armstrong, who dropped 13 on 5-6 from the floor against the Knicks on Saturday seems to be filling Anthony Johnson’s shoes quite well. And, for the record, Anthony Johnson’s shoes are bigger than you might think.
–Andre Iguadola finds Kyle Korver cutting down the lane, wide open. Sweet feed from Iggy Hop—nickname-wise, does that work?—that illustrates how much opposing defenses think of Ashton inside the arc.
–Shannon Brown’s debut. He looks hesitant and gets called for a charge.
–Matt Freije’s hair is awful. I’m sorry. Who are you, Aaron Carter?
–Zaza Pachulia tries a spin move on Donyell Marshall and the replay makes him look robotic at best.
–SUMMER MADNESS commercial. Glad I finally know that.
SONICS-HEAT (NBA TV)
–The Heat play-by-play guy is very nasal. I kind of like it. And I’ll start doing this impression in the next few days.
–Five and a half minutes in, it’s 6-5 Heat and half the arena in Miami is empty. Way to support the champs, Miami. The season ticket holders may just be too rich to care about going to see the Sonics, but still…
–“This is Lewis, off glass,” nasal dude says with an accentuating whisper. I love this guy. I don’t even want to know his name because I probably will have found something wrong with his announcing style by then.
–Nice up and under from Iggy-Hop. (Really, what do you think? Too corny? Not corny enough? Too obvious? Just right? I’ll listen.)
–Nasty bounce pass from JO to Al Harrington, whose speed is just too much for Dalembert. Actually, the replay shows that Dalembert unnecessarily doubled JO and lazily left his man open.
–Darrell Armstrong hits his 9th three of the season. Pacers analyst: “I don’t know if he heats up, or just stays warm.” Touche, Pacers analyst, touche. And I don’t want to know your name yet, either!
–JO with a putback. He has ten of Indiana’s 47. And they’re up by 11.
–Rawle Marshall with 8 points in his first extended minutes of the season, and we’re only in the second quarter.
–Alan Henderson, websters for “remarkable longevity”, has his pocket picked by Danny Granger. Granger hits Armstrong for the layup. Pacers score again to take a 15 point halftime lead.
–When Doneyll Marshall checks in, the “Marshall!” soundbyte from Eminem’s “Business” is blared over the loudspeaker. I like this.
–Joe Johnson wins a jumpball and pushes the ball in the basket, but it’s a jump ball violation because you can’t “control the tip”, which is a horribly confusing use of language by the referees and/or the rulebook. Austin Carr gushes over Johnson’s athleticism. All that and the Cavs are up one at the half.
–Tyronn Lue has a mullet of cornrows.
–To start the third quarter, Drew Gooden hits a fading, midrange baseline J. If he can hit that consistently, (insert generic platitude that refers to the Cavs getting better as a team).
–McLeod describes Lue as “ever-clever”. Ohhhh!
–Fabulous LBJ/Zaza Pachulia basket-trading sequence for five possessions. Zzz… finally gets one over Zaza, but the band-aid on his chin is flopping around there awkwardly.
-Oh my. The Pacers have opened up a 19 point lead. Rawle Marshall slips into the lane and hits a layup. Indiana is up 21, and I’m having none of this Rawle Marshall extravaganza. But if you want to look at him again, there he is.
–Shaq isn’t playing, so Wayne Simien replaces Alonzo Mourning.
–Luke Ridnour is ALL OVER the floor.
–Dorrell Wright slips a behind the back pass to a streaking Antoine Walker. As these two teams hit the half, it is noted that the Heat are only down six because of Dorrell Wright’s excellent second quarter. Well there you go.
–The amount of space the Hawks just gave LeBron is pretty astounding and a little bit insulting. The result is a three point play.
–Cedric Bozeman hits a three. Two plays later, Bozeman draws a charge on Donyell Marshall. CEDRIC BOZEMAN!
–Linton Johnson for three followed by Monta Ellis for three. Mind you, these used to just be names.
–The Warriros, down 14, are currently going with: Biedrins, Ellis, Ike Diogu, Anthony Roberson and Matt Barnes. You’ve gotta love Don Nelson.
–Tyson Chandler with an emphatic follow-up SLAM. He expresses his happiness and is immediately t’d up. You’ve gotta love the new rule changes.
–TMac puts the Rockets up double digits with a jumper. I’d be surprised if I caught another play in this game.
Halftime: Patrick Ewing is joking with Ahmad Rashad, complaining about the cold or something. They butter each other up back and forth until the game miraculously comes back on. Almost immediately, Ridnour hits Chris Wilcox for an alley-oop, restoring my positive outlook on life.
–Anthony Roberson steals the ball but then a momentary deflection causes him to double dribble.
–These young Warriors have clawed their way back in the game and are playing with a lot of impressive energy.
–Pachulia dribbles through the lane uncontested and hits a layup. Donyell Marshall answers with a baby hook. Nothing quite like star power. Actually, Donyell just hit his 10,000th point. Congrats.
–Joe Johnson sinks a 30 footer to tie the game at 84.
–Drew Gooden misses a three. Terrible offensive possession for Cleveland.
–Lue drives and dishes off to Childress who lays it in. Hawks by 2.
–LeBron misses a three. Gooden picks up a loose ball foul. Lue bricks both. Timeout Cavs.
–Larry Hughes drills a three.
–Cavs dig in defensively. Joe Johnson finds himself matched up with Drew Gooden and takes him baseline but finds nothing there, which leads to some good ball movement but Josh Smith ends up with a terrible look and airs it.
–Lue gets to the rim with ease and hits a layup. 6.7 left. LeBron misses the second free throw and Lue goes the length of the court past Larry Hughes to tie the game on a floater. Bottom line: LeBron needs to hit both of those. Austin Carr is mad that Lue might have carried the ball, but come on, we shouldn’t even be here right now.
–OT recap: The Cavs miss free throws and the Hawks catch fire. No offense to the Hawks, but it’s kind of sad.
–In sum, It was another Election night in Ohio and the Hawks came in and won the house.
–The Sonics just blew it in part because Ray Allen missed a free throw. I’m sorry, and feel awful for even mentioning it, but this new ball is a piece of crap. Even Ray Allen is missing multiple free throws in the same game.
I’m going to catch the rest of the Midwest games while I post this. For everything else that happened, check The D.A.Y. and The Links tomorrow.