I’m all for the theory that you can’t put too much emphasis on one win, just like you can’t put too much emphasis on one loss (that’s for all you Sky Is Falling folks out there and the They’re Winning The NBA Title fanatics. You know who you are. And where you post.).
But here’s an interesting parallel. Maybe.
A year ago, they were 2-8, coming home from the west to play Cleveland and if I had been a betting man, would have ventured a Euro or two on the Cavs. Lo and behold, they win and Sam’s always pointed to that game as a turning point.
Well, who woulda thunk they’d beat Memphis last night – in their 12th game. Perhaps they’ll look back in the summer and see the way they won, gutting out a close yet dreadful game in which they shot horribly, trailed late and rallied to win.
Oh yeah, Mitchell 1, Iavaroni 0
On to our regularly-scheduled stuff. No pap. No drivel. We're going for insight today.
Three Things I Learned
Take Bosh at his word
Okay, how many of you were ready to write him off after Sunday? Hands up. All of you.
Well, how’s 31 points on Tuesday and then that 22-19 gem in Memphis?
|'I told you I was going to be better, now I'm screaming it to everyone'|
What most impressed me was the way he finished last night. After 45 minutes in Dallas, he had enough legs to make that huge jumper – and that’s the first thing to go on his shot – and enough brains to drive and get that big late three-point play.
I’m not saying he’s all the way back, I’ll reserve judgement on that until after the weekend and two more games but his play the last two nights may end up being the most significant part of the trip.
Hey, stats freaks
Okay all you number crunchers out there, you know who you are. The dudes who think I’m a dinosaur ‘cause I haven’t bought into the plus-minus nonsense that’s all the rave.
Jose Calderon was a zero in Memphis, Darrick Martin was plus-6. That mean DMart wins the game for them.
Didn’t think so.
Birds of a feather
This is an actual e-mail exchange I had with a guy last night during the brief, and rather shot-filled, appearance by Kris Humphries:
Me: Hump is a taller, younger, less-smart version of DMart.
Him: Darrick: Pass. Hump: Rebound. Both: Don't shoot.
I once asked one of the coaches about Martin, who remains a favourite because he’s a good guy, a grown up and if he takes four shots in five minutes of a game they win, why do you care? Coach said, ‘yeah, he shoots a lot, but check him out. He’s smart enough to get open shots at least.’
Be nice if he made some but you can’t have everything, I guess.
Three Things You Wondered
Q: Doug, why do we see NBA coaches drawing up plays on the sideline before each half? At least that's what they appear to be doing. Why isn't that done in the room before they come out?
Joe N. Halifax
A: A refresher course, pure and simple. And it’s been my experience that NBA players can be a tad, um, forgetful so even if they did give ‘em the play in the locker room, something might get lost in their minds in the eight minutes or so of warmup and a TV timeout.
Q: My friend and I had a heated debate. Which former Raptor was the better player, Nate Huffman or Rafael Araujo.
Mike Yung, Hong Kong
A: That’s easy. Nate Huffman was better for the Raptors. All he cost them was money. Haffa cost them Andre Iguodala.
Q: Two Questions for the price of one.
Now I am not going to be silly and suggest the Chicken's costume for Kobe Bryant, but if Kobe is traded to the Eastern conference; Is the West still stronger or is there a change in the balance of power? For the making the list, who are top 5 referees that are fully respected throughout the league and media?
A. Lysets, Calgary
A: There’s no way they deal the Chicken costume, that’s got magical powers!
If Kobe comes East, it’s going to be to a team that’s already okay so he won’t actually add to the depth down the standings. Sure, the Lakers will be weaker, but I think they’re seventh or eighth in the West anyway. All in all, I still say the West, with the Spurs, Suns, Mavs, Nuggets, Rockets and Jazz is far deeper in good teams.
The ref question is hilarious. I asked a coach the other day for his top five and he said, and I’m paraphrasing here, “there aren’t five good ones. Seriously, they’re all weak.”
I don’t hold that to be true and I think if you took a poll, you’d come up with, in no particular order, Joey Crawford, Dan Crawford, Steve Javie. Bill Spooner and Eddie Rush would probably fill out the five in an unscientific sample.
Oh, and a couple more things:
You check out Scott Skiles rant against Tyrus Thomas the other day? Well, yesterday, the Bulls coach breaks off his daily ramblings to apologize. Wild. Check out K.C. Johnson in the Chicago Tribune.
The Bulls are as dysfunctional as any team not called the Knicks these days.
Can I just say one thing, a day late: Marie Osmond dances and the 90210 lady doesn’t? Life is terribly unfair.
Everyone’s off today, the entire league, for Thanksgiving down there. (Why they don’t celebrate Thanksgiving like normal people do in October, I’ll never understand). Not a bad idea, though. Even if it means a dark night of TV. Wonder what zany reality show I can catch up on.
Seriously, think the league made a wise move not scheduling games. You can’t imagine how big a holiday it is in the States, giving as many teams as possible a day off at home with family is a fine thing.
Remember, tomorrow's a mailbag day and I've come to realize many of you love to send missives. Just click here to get in touch.
Off to scrape the care. I (Heart) Winter. (Sarcasm noted, I hope).