Good passes, good music and, finally, a good cab ride
Man, it’s going to be nice to get back home, been a long week trip thanks to an eternity in Orlando. And being back in the regular time zone for a long time will help, too. Not the body clock but the blog clock; takes too much effort to try to hit 7 a.m. when you’re an hour or two behind.
He’s like Brazilian Magic
We’ve ragged on Leandro a few times for his unwillingness to pass an awful lot but he made one last night that was a game-breaker.
Late fourth quarter, he’s on the wing in front of the New Orleans bench and Kleiza’s in the corner.
Kleiza passes up shot to give it to Leandro and you’re sure he’s going to either hoist a three or drive the ball.
He makes a little fake, steps in and you’re really, really sure he’s going to hoist a shot or drive the ball.
Back the ball goes to Kleiza in the corner and with the shot clock running down, he calmly drills one of his five three-pointers and Raptors are up eight with about three minutes to go.
Amir’s big night
The one I remember best came when the game was decided, an emphatic swat of a Grievis Vasquez shot with about 10 seconds left, Toronto up 10 and the game over.
It was the fifth of Amir Johnson’s five blocked shots in the game – ties a season high, two off his career high – and he looked as active as he has in weeks, even after going over on his ankle in the third quarter.
Sure, there were only seven points and seven rebounds in 35 minutes but there was a presence we haven’t seen often enough this season.
He banged with Kaman and chased him to the elbow and had to deal with the athleticism of the Ayon kid and generally had one of his better games.
Now, stringing together four or five of ‘em in a row would be nice but …
A contrite DeMar
I’m sure you all read the gamer with the stuff about DeMar and the tweet and his public display of frustration after the Houston game.
Yes, he knows he was wrong, he realized when he took it down after a couple of hours but it’s the bigger picture that kind of intrigues me.
I’m not about to suggest teams have the need – or even the right – to demand players have a long cooling off period after games before they do any social media shenanigans but the inherent danger of tweeting is becoming obvious with each passing day.
And kids need to learn: What you put out there is out there; someone is going to see it as soon as you do it and no matter how quickly you hit the delete button, you cannot put that genie back in the bottle.
Yes, it’s raw emotion and that can be a wonderful thing but in a team dynamic, raw emotion is best dealt with internally.
Now, what DeMar did was hardly earth-shattering or big or significant in the big picture; he was ticked and lashed out.
And perhaps the best thing to come of this is that he, and others, might take a deep breath before the next time, when they might do something they truly regret.
What else is up?
May as well go three-for-three on my sudden fascination with Mary Chapin Carpenter but this one, as an Alert Irregular pointed out, includes the legendary Beausoleil of New Orleans and you gotta love the Cajun sound, right?
This is a day late but I didn’t have a chance to chat with you after I got here yesterday. If you do nothing else today other than spend time here and read the game story, you have to read this Grantland piece by Jonathan Abrams about the NBA brawl in Detroit. Please.
Funny. I had dinner with Jonathan on Sunday in Orlando and when we were discussing his new gig – he used to be with the New York Times – he failed to mention that he had the best piece of long-form sports journalism you’ve read in years coming out in a couple of days.
Tales From The Cab Rides
(And haven’t had too many good ones, lately)
Gentleman wonders where his fare is from and when he finds out, it clicks that the Raptors are in town and the guy’s a big basketball/sports fan.
You want to know what one local thinks of Chris Paul?
“He’s no Drew Brees. Drew Brees is a leader. Drew Brees is a guy who can carry a team to a championship. Brees saved the Saints. You always thought Paul was going to leave.”
“Won’t ever go to Utah. It’s sacrilegious. There’s only one city in the world that should have that name.”
Yeah, dude saw the New Orleans Jazz play. That has to be cool.
“I had an ex-girlfriend – don’t see her no more, wonder whatever became of her – who worked for an ad agency that did the Jazz stuff so we used to get tickets all the time, go to the parties. Pistol Pete Maravich? Could watch him all day. Imagine him today with the three-pointer? You couldn’t stop him.”
You know what two weeks today is, don’t you?
NBA Trade Deadline Day.
Clear your calendars.
What did the newspaper readers in NOLA find out about that game? This.
And a Monkees story.
Way back in a former life, I used to do some work for the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum when it first opened at Ontario Place.
Well, one of the perks of the job – and it certainly wasn’t the wages – was working there in the summer; it was nice to be around crowds making Canada’s great baseball history known and it was nice to be around the shows at the old Forum.
I’m going to tell you this: I don’t remember what year it was exactly, I want to say 1985, maybe ’86, but the single biggest and most raucous crowd I saw for an Ontario Place show was the one for the Monkees. The boats were lined up, the people were lined up and I recall it was a zoo.
RIP Davy, I’m sure there are Women Of A Certain Vintage who remember you more fondly than, say, I do.