The Perfect Fan Experience
I hope everyone had a very joyous Christmas with gifts, food, and basketball. The NBA gave us the gift of 5 games that would take up the entire day and I have no complaints. Actually, I have one and that is to Adidas for making those hideous jersey. I didn’t see the point in making the jerseys one solid color with light trimming that you could barely see. I thought they were wearing colorful tank tops. Besides that, I enjoyed majority of the games. Something I would like to address is how the NBA conduct their Christmas festivities. A few players already shared their feelings in the past, one being Kevin Garnett, about playing on Christmas and how it hinders them from spending time with their families. During the Knicks-Lakers game, I found out that Tyson Chandler hasn’t spent time with his family on Christmas in 12 years. That’s a long time. I came up with a few ideas that could make it a player favorite but I have to keep them in the pot just in case.
The Clippers are SHOWTIME people! While beating the Nuggets 112-100, the Clippers gave us a Christmas highlight tape that you could sell in stores. Their pre-game motto must be ” Everybody gets dunked on HARD” because that’s what happened this game. They are more than just dunks though, Chris Paul began the game with a ball fake pass before assisting Matt Barnes for the fast break slam. Jamal Crawford did his signature “Crawford Step”, where he pro hop and put the ball behind his back before laying it up. The Clippers are just a fun team to watch, a lot more than the Lakers. And to think they’re doing this while zipping teams up. On their current 14 game win streak, they average a winning margin of 15. Chris Paul has been the perfect general of this army. During their streak he averages 16 points, 9 assist and 2 steals. That’s the type of production you need from your floor general because all he is doing is making everyone better. What really put them over the edge though is their depth. Against the Nuggets, two of their bench players scored at least 20, Matt Barnes with 20 and Jamal Crawford with 22. Production like that off the bench is not normal and if you got it more than likely you’re the best team in the league. The Clippers outscored the Nuggets 42-22 in the 2nd quarter. How do you score 42 points in one quarter? Then only 11 points came from outside the paint. Those stats signals of a good team people. Saying their the best in the league would be a valid statement.
Well look who finally decided to start hooping, the Los Angeles Lakers. Thanks to a tough drive to the basket and a 2 hand dunk finish from Pau Gasol, the Lakers walked away with a 100-94 victory. Pau Gasol 2 hand slam through the lane put the Lakers up 99-94 with 12 seconds left and I couldn’t be anymore prouder of Pau. I was a huge Pau Gasol when he played the Grizzlies but when he went to LA I didn’t like him as much. LA made him softer but he is still very skilled player and probably the most skillful big man in the league. But the difference maker for the Lakers is Steve Nash. Nash dropped 16 points and 11 dimes against the Knicks and you could tell the difference when he is on the court. The whole team just look more energized for the game and even run the floor a lot better. He has only played in 2 games including this one but the Lakers are on a 5 game win streak, currently with 14-14 record. That’s not bad considering their circumstances but I still expect more from them. As far as the Knicks go I don’t think this game will slow them down. Both Melo and JR Smith are their best basketball and the old vets like Jason Kidd are hooping. Melo scored 34, making this three out of the last four with at least 30 and continues to be my front-runner for the MVP.
The Rockets and Bulls game I didn’t catch much of but I’m sort of glad I didn’t. The Rockets destroyed the Bulls 120-97 thanks to 4 of their 5 starters scoring at least 20. The Rockets out scored the Bulls 67-46 between the 2nd and 3rd quarters. Omer Asik played outstanding against his former team scoring 20 points, 18 boards, and 3 blocks, you can’t ask for much else. Last summer I thought the Rockets was foolish to give Asik all that money (3 years $25 million) but he earned his keep against the Bulls. Asik on the year averages 10 points and 11 rebounds and you can question whether or not that is $25 million but it is a double-double at the end of the day, it’s something you can work with. The Rockets are a weird team though because they can score with the best of them but sit only 15-12 on the year. Watching them play, you would think they are 19-8. The emergence of James Harden as a starter is what really give them hope. He is 4th in the league in scoring with 25.7 but he averages 27 in the month of December. Who I need to see from is Jeremy Lin. Lin only averages 10 points and 6 assist. He was doing that coming off the bench. Its different when you’re going against the best every night. He did come up with 20 points and 11 assist against the Bulls but if Derrick Rose was there would that happen? And until the Bulls get Rose back they are going to be a middle of the road team to me. So far they have been holding up the fort but their general is definitely needed.
Do you know how much better the Thunder-Heat matchup would be if Kevin Durant and LeBron James didn’t like each other. I would consider it a real rivalry if they didn’t. I almost feel like KD hold back and play the little brother role when he match up against LeBron. I understand though, he has a great deal of respect for LeBron but that don’t mean you have to like him. I’m not trying start a beef I just wanna see them go at each other neck on the court. I feel like it’s a charity game when they play each other now. The Heat were the victors, winning 103-97, making this 5 straight against the Thunder dating back to the Finals. LeBron did his daily stat stuffing with 29 buckets, 8 boards, 9 dimes, 2 steals, and 1 block. KD tried to match that with 33 points, 7 boards, and 3 dimes but obviously it wasn’t enough. The thing about it is, everyone else on the Thunder & Heat don’t like each other. Russell Westbrook and Serge Ibaka show they don’t really care for the Heat and Dwayne Wade always play a little feisty when they play the Thunder. Can’t forget about Kendrick Perkins, he don’t like LeBron or D-Wade for that matter. This has the potential to be a great rivalry but unless KD and LeBron show some dislike for each other, it’s not going to be as good.
Last time the Nets and the Celtics played, Rajon Rondo and Kris Humphries got into a little squabble that led to a 2-game suspension for Mr. Rondo. This time Kevin Garnett and Gerald Wallace got into this time, kinda. For some reason, Gerald Wallace wouldn’t let go of KG jersey after he fouled and KG thought he should assist him with an aggressive chop to Wallace forearms. I don’t blame KG because Wallace didn’t let go for a long time but in Wallace defense it look like he didn’t mean no harm. I didn’t get it. This game was sort of boring other than that. KG nor Paul Peirce went off, combining for 16 points and Rondo didn’t have double-digit dimes. They walked away with a 96-73 victory by playing balance. Even though KG only had 8 points he grabbed 10 boards with 2 blocks and 2 steals while Paul Peirce dished off 10 dimes and grabbed 5 rebounds. Rondo even did his part by scoring 19 and 3 steals. Then rookie Jared Sullinger came up with 16 points off the bench with 7 rebounds. Nothing special, just everybody doing their part to help the team win. The Celtics have been struggling, going 5-6 in the month of December so far, but all this team have to do is make it to the playoffs. No matter what their record is they’re still a contender. The Nets have hit some sort of wall going 3-8 after starting off 11-4. They need to find some scoring from someone else. Joe Johnson has to put up more than 17 a game. I need at least 23 preferably 25. Joe has the skill set to be unstoppable but he don’t play that way. Him and Derron Williams only combined for 22 point, 8 assist, and 6 turnovers. Your franchise players shouldn’t look like that on Christmas, that’s a bad gift to the fans.