Decisions, decisions, decisions
Heckuva game, no?
You want value for your entertainment dollar or time spent in front of the TV? Well, you got it with that one.
Close all the way, entertaining, lots of points, lots of big shots.
Sure, the home side didn't win but you can't have everything, can you?
No, but you can have this stuff:
Not good, at all
It wasn’t so much the shot that Hedo missed at the end of regulation time that was the big problem. After all, he’d drilled one from almost exactly the same spot to tie it with about 70 seconds left in regulation and I’ve yet to see any hue and cry about that decision.
No, the issue from this vantage point is that there didn’t seem to be any screens set anywhere to make the Cavs switch or jump or hedge or do anything.
Jarrett kind ambled past Turk from the far sideline as Turk dribbled right but didn’t hit anyone. The off-the-ball action seemed far too spectator-ish than proactive.
Giving the ball to Turk in that situation and telling him to make a play is fine with me. It’s worked before – a pass-off to Bosh to win that game at Philly comes immediately to mind – and without the security blanket of Bosh, Turk shooting would certainly be a good second option.
Yeah, he probably should have turned the corner a bit more aggressively but he didn’t; he was ticked about it, and so was Jay. But he took a shot that didn’t go in. Stuff happens.
But the other stuff is the worry; they can’t be satisfied standing around waiting for something to happen.
Those days are gone
Saw this coming in the Portland game when it became apparent that trotting out a frontcourt of Amir Johnson and Reggie Evans gave Toronto’s offence all the flow of sludge and, sure enough, about five minutes into the game, the change was made. That’s when Jay took Rasho out for Amir – a few minutes earlier than he normally would – so he could start a four-bigs rotation that wouldn’t put Johnson and Evans on the court together for even a minute.
Now, he got nothing from Johnson when he made the move – I think Amir lasted all of two minutes – but it did allow for something a break-out game from Evans.
What you saw last night was what they expected from him all season, a lot of activity on the glass, an opponent flying through the air on a tough box-out at time and general mayhem being created.
Now, maybe making post moves every time he touches the ball might not always be the best decision ever made – I think he should probably work on kicking the ball back out so they can swing around for an open three – but there’s no doubting Evans’s effort.
And if he keeps going like that, there is no way Jay can’t play a four-man bigs rotation every game.
I know it’s not something he wants to do with regularity but you can’t deny Evans time if he keeps playing like that and Johnson, last night’s rather pedestrian effort aside, needs to be out there for his length and ability to finish in transition.
Better get to work
Didn’t see it an awful lot from the Cavs but did see it enough times to think that teams are going to start doing it more often to the Raps if they’ve got the personnel.
And that’s post-up Toronto’s point guards.
Delonte West did it to Jose twice that I can recall; they had Jarrett down in there at least once, too; and it came on the heels of Portland having some success with Andre Miller on the block, too.
Neither Jack nor Calderon have a lot of experience holding guys off on the block, or with moving them out of there by five or six feet. I would expect them to get some more work on it in practice now that two teams in a row have tried to exploit things down there.
Just a wee bit more, if you don’t mind.
And some of it has to do with basketball.
This doesn’t, though.
I hadn’t given much real thought to the Canadian Olympic women’s pucksters, to tell the truth.
But now I love ‘em.
Every one of ‘em.
What’s better than dragging out a bottle of champagne and a couple of beers and a cigar or two and showing some unadulterated joy at winning a gold medal at home over your arch rival and capping off four years of hard work.
You’re supposed to celebrate stuff like that, aren’t you?
And if those stick-in-the-mud IOC types – who have been known to have a few glasses of complimentary champagne every now and then if they want – have a problem with that? Tough noogies.
Here’s a newsflash: Athletes let loose when they win. Egads!
And, yes, believe it or not, sometimes letting loose involves intoxicants and cigars. Shocker!
Way to go, ladies.
Oh, right, basketball.
This isn’t official as I type this in the pre-dawn hours but the whispers I was hearing around the arena last night that it’s questionable whether or not Chris Bosh travels with the team to Oklahoma City and Houston.
Sitting out those two makes a bit of sense, no?
It gives him another week to get entirely healthy before they face the Knicks and Sixers here next week just before they head out west.
As I said, it’s not official and there could be one of those miracles but if you tune in here later on tonight or tomorrow and see a story that says he’s not going, don’t be surprised.
It was pork schnitzel on the menu in the media room last night -- $12 gets you a pretty good meal game-days – and it must have been good because we had a rather imposing visitor dining with us.
Yeah, guess the food in the locker room wasn’t up to snuff or something because he was sitting there among the peons choking back some grub a couple of hours or so before tip-off.
No, I don’t imagine he had to cough up the twelve bucks.
Usually we get scouts, and maybe an assistant coach or GM or two, and Jerry Sloan’s a regular but this is the first time I can remember a player of Shaq’s stature sitting down to sup in the room.
Right. The Cleveland report. Well, here it is.
And as an added bonus since tomorrow morning is going to be mailbag time, here’s what’s up in Oklahoma City.
As we’re sitting in a corner of the local downtown establishment (as opposed to the new local Hazelville establishment) watching the end of the pucks – high drama, indeed – they show an interview with an obviously miffed Pierre Leuders.
We couldn’t hear exactly what he said but he was quite grumbly and ticked off and kind of stormed off.
What I hoped to find out was that when the interviewer asked him what he thought of his run, he’d stared at him and said:
And then walked away.
Speaking of mail, here’s the absolute last call.
From the department of much ado about nothing, are you proud of me for having written this much and not once referring to any of our brilliant elected public servants as a “doofus.”
All right, some baby plane is going to take me to Minneapolis soon, where I will sit waiting for a couple of hours waiting for another baby plane to ferry me to Oklahoma City (what a guy will endure to miss changing planes at O’Hare) so I’m not sure when I’ll get back to these parts to deal with all your insightful comments.
But, trust me, I will.
Have fun, kids.