Mistakes abound and that's the story of the day
Sorry about the tardiness but at the intersection of work and life, work had the big yield sign this morning.
But it’s worth the wait, maybe.
|GARY W. GREEN/AP|
|Don't blame the ball, Dwight. Blame Nick Anderson.|
When these Finals end – and, sadly for many reasons I believe that will be Tuesday night in Los Angeles – there will be two enduring symbols to me. And neither has to do with the team that won the championship.
The first is going to be the look on Dwight Howard’s face when he went all Nick Anderson on the Magic last night, bricking those two free throws with 11.6 seconds left.
I know Howard’s not an accomplished free throw shooter but with nothing less than the season on the line, making one of two to seal the game is, um, big. And after, walking back to the huddle, didn’t he look bewildered?
And for all you fans of curses out there, do you think Orlando rues the moment it decided to use Anderson to fire up the crowd before the game. The same guy who missed four free throws in the final minute of Game 1 of the
1985 1995 final before the Magic were swept by Houston being trotted out the next time Orlando plays for a championship?
That, my friends, is tempting fate.
The second symbol? It’s got to be Jameer Nelson backing up, backing up, backing up in those final 11 seconds before realizing, “hey, we’re up three, who cares about a layup, I probably would be smart to guard Derek Fisher a tad more closely.”
I can sort of forgive Howard, he is what he is at the free throw line; it’s stunning to me that Nelson, who seems a bright player, would not be in Fisher’s chest the second the Laker guard crossed the midcourt line
It’s not like Fisher was going to find a sudden burst of speed and get by Nelson, is it? The dude’s like 63 years old.
I know Nelson made some big plays in the fourth quarter – and I would have loved to have been able to read Rafer’s mind when he was doing it – but that’s just a dumbass play by a guard who should know better.
Speaking of the Raptors, this is how things go for NBA teams around now heading into the draft.
A whole raft of Raptors types – I believe Bryan and almost all his henchmen – are off to New Jersey today to see a workout.
When I asked one of the travelling party who they were checking out, he rolled his eyes and said
“Don’t know, we’ll find out when we get there.”
Now, riddle me this, too.
Why didn’t the Magic foul Fisher? Or someone.
Well, this is what Stan said:
“I thought it was too early at 11, though when they took it full court, I'll have to go back and look at that. That one will haunt me forever, but we could have played that play a lot better.”
Um, yeah, they could have.
The foul isn’t given at 11 seconds when they inbound the ball, the foul’s taken with six seconds left when they’ve got it in the front court. It’s a debate about coaching styles that will go on forever but I think we’ve seen a few times in these playoffs, fouling probably is the way to go.
Speaking of Stan, he’s the same coach who was lauded a genius for that last-second play for Courtney Lee at the end of Game 2 and I presume he’s being killed today for not fouling.
Such is life as a coach, eh?
Brilliant on Sunday. A dummy on Thursday.
Oh, how proud David Stern must be.
All season long, we’ve heard what a great kid Derrick Rose is, takes responsibility for his actions, carries himself in a professional manner, the Rookie Of The Year is an excellent role model for youngsters growing up.
Well, since that epic seven-game series with Boston (and doesn’t that seem like it happened about two years ago?), Rose has found himself in the middle of an SAT controversy about his test scores going into his one year in college and is now defending himself over a picture that shows him flashing an alleged gang sign, as this Chicago Tribune story details.
What’s it all mean? Maybe it just means a kid made an honest mistake – although anyone, if a kid like Rose, has to know that everything he does will eventually be found out; maybe it means he’s got some serious character flaws – although folks around the Bulls will tell you that’s the furthest thing from the truth.
What it tells me is that we are often far to fast to judge people, especially young people and to lionize a teenager is a silly thing to do.
Derrick Rose will probably go on to have a long and illustrious NBA career, he could become a man of whom all fans and friends can be proud. But right now, he’s a young kid who made at least one serious mistake – the concrete proof on the SAT thing isn’t out there yet – and I don’t think we should be surprised.
Speaking of the intersection of work and life, I’m sure you’re all dying to know that Super Son made his career pitching debut last night, threw two Maddux-like innings of strikes on the corners and deceptive quickness as The Mighty Yankees got back to winning.
And if you weren’t dying to know, well, tough noogies.
Why will it end in six, you ask?
Because I picked Orlando in seven and because I will have to watch Game 5 on Sunday not knowing until like 11 p.m. whether I have to wake up and fly to L.A. on Monday and you know that whatever will inconvenience me the most will definitely occur.
(Okay, truth be told, I wrote that with the hope of some kind of reverse-curse or something; if I say it, I’ll be wrong and I’ll be home all next week)
But, regardless, for the tens and tens of you who missed the in-game bloggy thingy last night (and you know who I’m talking about), we will be back in the usual spot on Sunday night if you care to stop by.