The Basketblog

Celebrating the love of the Game.

NBA Playoffs: April 29

Here’s a few of my thoughts after today:

Mike Tirico summarized Antoine Walker’s entire career in one call: “Walker…tippy-toe triple…is off.” Really though, if he played the way he does now at the beginning of his career, he never would have lasted more than three years. When he was younger, he was a huge match-up problem because he was equally good from three-point range and the block. He actually averaged over 10 rebounds per game his second season in the league.

I giggled like a little girl when Ben Wallace was running away from the foul at the end of the fourth quarter. That was one of the goofiest things I’ve ever seen in an NBA game, and it made me wonder why I’d never seen it before. Teams pass the ball around at the end of games to kill extra time before a foul can be committed, so why doesn’t the bad free throw shooter just run around to avoid the foul? Then I realized that Shaq is the player usually “hacked,” and he can’t outrun anyone.

Baron Davis Celebrates
Me when Baron Davis hit the buzzer beater at halftime. “I think it’s over now.” As it turns out, I was wrong but it didn’t look that way for the first few minutes of the third quarter. I said it again when he got the dunk at the end of the third quarter…and was wrong again. I really thought he’d do it again at the end of regulation, but of course I was wrong again.

Reason X why Northern California is better than Southern California: the basketball fans. Golden State and Sacramento have arguably the two best crowds in the league, and LA fans are notorious for leaving games early. Jack Nicholson and Billy Crystal can be seen courtside at LA games, Jessica Alba can be seen at Golden State games. There’s no competition. I think the crowd influenced the refs in some way because it did seem like the calls were going more in Golden State’s favor most of the two games. Golden State deserved to win both games, but I’m saying they had a little help.

Detroit/Orlando Series Recap
Ok, so I admit that I was way off about Orlando competing in this series. I was basing that on the fact that Detroit never sweeps anyone. That, and I thought Orlando would be as excited as Golden State is. I don’t buy what people are saying about Detroit playing really well right now. Sure, they had to be playing well in order to sweep anyone, but Orlando was really terrible. I ought to save my pick, but I’ll tell you right now that they aren’t getting out of the second round.

Grant Hill actually played pretty well in the series but they still got swept. As it turns out, Dwight Howard was not the best player in the series as I said he was. I must admit that I was completely wrong about Orlando’s players in my predictions. (By the way, I just now noticed that I never finished talking about Grant Hill. To the three of you who read that, I apologize.)

Chicago/Miami Series Recap
Now here’s a team that’s playing well! They took on the defending champs, and the series was never really in doubt. Granted, Miami didn’t play much better than Orlando and Dwyane Wade was not right, but sweeping them is still more impressive than sweeping Orlando. Luol Deng and Ben Gordon were both incredible, Heinrich and Nocioni both played as well as they should, and Ben Wallace was making free throws!

Now, I realize that Detroit has more athleticism than Miami, but I think that Chicago not only has as many scoring options at every position, they’re at least as good at defense as Detroit. Detroit’s only real advantage is experience, but Miami’s experience did not help them at all.

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April 29, 2007 - Posted by | Chicago Bulls, Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors, Miami Heat, NBA, Orlando Magic, Sacramento Kings | , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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