Ways to handle the end of games; and a great gets honoured
Interesting goings-on Houston last night where the Rockets rolled up 23 three-pointers – tying the all-time NBA single-game record – in a rout of the Golden State Warriors.
The game ended contentiously, as Jonathan Feigen’s story from the Chronicle tells you here, with a near fight, a couple of ejections and the Warriors fouling intentionally so the Rockets wouldn’t get off one more shot.
In light of last week’s Caron Butler episode here, maybe it’s time to discuss sportsmanship and what’s good and what’s not so good.
Not sure you can equate the two too much – Butler stripping Jonas Valanciunas of the ball while Valanciunas was dribbling out the clock was a bush league move in my opinion. Or silly, at least. Unnecessary at the very least. But, no, bush league is right.
No need for it, it didn’t “stop” anything and it’s not like the Raptors had done anything in the game like run up the score or anything to warrant it. If Valanciunas had been showboating or trying to score some last, meaningless basket, there may have been cause to do something. He wasn’t, he was treating the end of a rout the way he should have – and as soon as Toronto gained possession the entire bench stood and told him to dribble out the clock – so what Butler did was entirely out of order.
But what of respect? For the game, for the opponent, for the situation?
While I have an issue with Butler’s shenanigans, I have not problem at all with what the Warriors did at the end of that game, nor do I have much of a problem with how the Rockets apparently comported themselves.
The Warriors didn’t want to go into a record book as having surrendered more threes than any team in any game ever and, in the course of play, did everything within the rules (well, except for the flagrant foul that might have been a tad excessive) to prevent it.
(That they should have tried to prevent more threes earlier in the game is an obvious point to bring up but they didn’t and they found themselves where they were and dealt with it accordingly.)
The Rockets didn’t seem to be intent on running up the score or embarrassing an opponent in a game that was effectively over so I have no issue with how that one ended.
But I truly believe there is a way that teams should run the final seconds of a game that’s no longer in doubt.
You pass the ball a lot, you don’t hoist shots with more than four or five seconds left on the shot clock, you dribble out the game if you take possession with less than 24 seconds left.
You take your foot off the pedal a little bit.
Not sure where I read this but thanks to whoever it wrote it.
Today is Bob Marley’s birthday and I absolutely dare you not to sing along at least a little bit.
He was, truly, a legend, an inspiration, a classic.
And the dude could do music.
Jack Morris as the new radio analyst for the Blue Jays?
I can live with that because he struck me during the few times I spoke with him the year he pitched here to be honest and forthright – he could, at times, be quite crusty and critical – and if those traits carry over, that’ll be a good thing.
But baseball, as you know, is made for radio and there’s little better than a warm summer night on a deck or patio with the game in the background and as much as I want to hear the analysis on a radio broadcast, I want a soothing voice.
You can’t have screamers do baseball, it just doesn’t work; you want a lilt to the voice, the ability to tell stories, to weave tales in throughout a game.
Sure, I’d love to know whether the analyst thought the manager blew it with a pitching move or a bunt rather than a hit and run or whatever; but I’d much rather have old time stories and some context presented in a somewhat soothing manner.
Hope he can deliver.
I’ve had the pleasure of working alongside some great, great people over the years (some knuckleheads but not that many) and at right at the top of the list would be my man Perk.
He’s hilarious, he’s got no ego, if we were at the same thing he’d do whatever he could to help out. He’d go grab you a quote, he’d always check to see what angle I was writing (“We’ll play off your ball, Smitty”) and the guy’s got more stories than anyone I can think of.
And the work he did with our Jim Proudfoot Fund was and is amazing. He’d do all the paperwork, make sure all his people got mentioned in the column, he made sure a worthy and tremendous tradition carried on.
And if you read this, you’ll know that he finally got some long overdue recognition yesterday.
They don’t make ‘em like Perk anymore and our craft is worse off for it.
I see some mail over there where I have to look now but the weekend’s coming and I could use some more.
It’s at firstname.lastname@example.org (there’s a link someone on the right of this page) so do what you have to do.
Oh those crazy young Raptors and their hectic young lives.
Clubs. Video game marathons. Travel. Nights out.
Well, maybe not so much for all of them.
It’s interesting, this group. There are, in a large part, kind of boring it would appear. We don’t hear a lot about them being out in the nightclubs – sure, some of them go every now and then; what self-respecting 20-something with a night off wouldn’t? – and I don’t see ‘em clogging lobby bars on the road.
All that’s fine with me and maybe Terrence Ross, the second-youngest of them, hit on the salient point yesterday.
We were asking him about the grind of the season because it’s nothing he’s ever experienced and how he handles it to stay relatively fresh.
“I feel like you have to sleep more, get more rest. Every time I go home, I just sleep.”
Okay, further to yesterday, I’ll give you that there might still be a need for telephone answering machines but I found it quite interesting that several of you stood up for them in the “things we don’t need anymore” list yet no one made an impassioned plea for baby toes.