Wed Jan 05 12:01pm EST
(Just three Cow-bros, chillin'.)
This wasn't just pace, though the pace (97 possessions in the game) was brisk. New York wasn't stopping San Antonio, and the Spurs weren't stopping the Knicks. And the Spurs were stopped more often than the Knicks were. And while the Spurs didn't like that, there didn't appear to be much the Spurs could do to stop that. The end.
A ridiculous 132 points per 100 possessions for New York in the win, as the Spurs were continually caught out of position and out of whack defensively. The effort wasn't great, I submit, but this was also New York's quickness and commitment offensively that pushed the Spurs into places that they didn't want to end up in. And the San Antonio starters certainly didn't want to end up on the bench with three minutes to go in a 10-point game, but that's where Gregg Popovich put them. That's where the Knicks sent them.
Just six turnovers, all game, for New York. 55 percent shooting, as Wilson Chandler(notes) led the team with 31 points and nine rebounds. San Antonio's own movement and interior finishing kept this game close, but 16 turnovers to the Knicks? And all those points? A strange, strange sight.
Your typical unrelenting effort from the Milwaukee Bucks, along with your typical terrible offense from the Milwaukee Bucks. The team attacked the basket offensively (shooting a very un-Milwaukee-like 34 free throw attempts in the game) and tried to keep up defensively, but the Heat just had more consistent answers offensively down the stretch.
Dwyane Wade(notes) led the Heat with 34 points, as Wade, James, and Chris Bosh(notes) combined for 35 of their own free throws (Miami shot 37 of the freebies overall), while helping to slow Milwaukee offensively in the second half. This is a very, very talented basketball team, my friends. Milwaukee kept it close and had a second half lead, but the Heat are just too strong in too many areas to be messed with right now.
Just over 94 points per 100 possessions for the Pistons in this loss, which is terrible for any team, much less one that appears to have been built as an offensive-minded outfit. The team missed 10 of 13 three-pointers and turned it over 16 times, and while the champs didn't exactly turn their season around in this blowout win, they didn't string enough great possessions together to make this a workable conquest.
16 points, nine rebounds, and four assists off the Lakers bench for Lamar Odom(notes). Detroit's Tracy McGrady(notes) looked pretty solid at point guard at times (14 points and six assists), but he also turned the ball over six times.
We'll have more on the Lakers later today.
When Atlanta was blowing out the Kings, this somehow felt like a closer game than it was. And then, when the Kings made a late rally to make things look respectable, the game felt more one-sided than the final score represented. Go figure.
Good shootin' for Atlanta, with Joe Johnson(notes) looking all put back together on his way to 28 points. Thirty-one points and seven dimes for Jamal Crawford(notes), as the Kings just weren't closing out. Even the big men were getting open perimeter looks throughout.
Twenty-nine points, eight assists, and five steals for Tyreke Evans(notes), but the guy seriously needs to cool it with the three-pointers until he learns to jump straight up on them. Nearly three a game for Evans this year, hitting just 28 percent along the way.
With all sorts of able bodies on the shelf, the Mavericks and Trail Blazers were pretty co-aligned in this game, with the possible exception of a 6-2 shooting guard in a headband that likes to make plane noises when he runs.
Jason Terry(notes) took over, again, down the stretch of this game. He scored 12 of Dallas' 22 fourth quarter points, had two assists and two rebounds during that frame, and generally put a team that was hurting for offense on his back. To be accurate, the Mavs were hurting partially because Terry had shot 3-11 over the first three quarters, but THIS IS NO MATTER OF YOURS AND WE SHAN'T REFER TO IT AGAIN.
10 points and 20 rebounds for Marcus Camby(notes), who is quietly having a rebounding season (in terms of the amount of available boards he grabs while on the floor) that is on par with Kevin Love's,(notes) and LaMarcus Aldridge(notes) continued the best stretch of his career with 28 points and 10 caroms. But the Blazers just couldn't get anything consistent going on the perimeter, while making only 11 free throws all game.
The Grizz are rolling. They're giving Zach Randolph(notes) the ball, thank you, Rudy Gay(notes) is continuing to play great all-around basketball, and Tony Allen(notes) just put the team over the top. Yep.
It was scary, throughout, but Allen wobbled his way to 19 points in the start, while coming through with some astonishingly active defensive plays throughout that just aren't picked up by his three steals and two blocks in the box score. And though he punched his way into the starting lineup, Allen was the straw in this particular drink, as the Grizzlies beat the Thunder in their own, active game.
An embarrassing display for the Raptors over the last three quarters of this loss. The team had Chicago on its heels, as has been the case on and off for the last few years, with great spacing in the first quarter. But the Raps just didn't want to move their feet defensively, Chicago kept attacking the rim, and the Chicago depth up front helped put Toronto away.
It was a bounce-back game for Taj Gibson(notes), who has struggled of late, with 16 points and 14 rebounds (six offensive) in just 25 minutes. Derrick Rose(notes) was slick and quick with 19 points and six dimes in under 30 minutes, and Luol Deng(notes) right-placed his way into 24 points. 13 points, seven rebounds, five blocks, and two assists in 20 minutes for Omer Asik(notes), as well. Chicago just keeps coming at you.