Thursday, January 17, 2008

YouTube of the day: Karl Malone has no use for your small chicken

YouTube of the day: Karl Malone has no use for your small chicken

Sure, KFC offers moderately sized pieces of chicken for a reasonable price, but Karl Malone wants nothing to do with it.

In fact, Karl Malone wants the biggest pieces of chicken he can find, and Karl Malone has discovered (after driving in his "MAILMAN'S" big rig all day) that the biggest pieces of chicken available tend to come from Hardee's.

At Hardee's, Karl Malone has found that Karl Malone can get ten big pieces of chicken with five biscuits (sustaining that unimpeachable two pieces of chicken-to-one biscuit ratio that Karl Malone holds so dear) for just $6.99.

Sides extra.�

Ray Allen, Celtics end mini-slump, beat Blazers

The 10-man rotation, starring KG and the bane of his existence
A look around the league and the web that covers it. It's also important to note that the rotation order and starting nods aren't always listed in order of importance. That's for you, dear reader, to figure out.

C: The Oregonian. It's the NBA's most hilarious, unknown, and one-sided "rivalry." Kevin Garnett absolutely hates Joel Przybilla. Seriously. Has for years. Further proof: "... oh man, here was Garnett, hurrying over, lips flapping, staring down Przybilla. Shouted Garnett: ‘I'll chop his head off on the other end!'"
PF: FanNation. Sports Illustrated polled 242 players to determine the game's most underachieving talent. Number one? Kwame Brown. What's crazy is that, no exaggeration, seven out of the ten players on this list have either been signed/traded-for by Isiah Thomas, or rumored to have been coveted by Isiah.
SF: Brew Hoop. Andrew Bogut's January numbers: 18.3 points, 9.9 rebounds, a block, three assists. Is this something to bank on? Someone to lean on? Someone to call back? Someone to find in the pivot? Is Andrew just going to break some hearts, again? Or is he here, for reals, now?
SG: Blog-a-Bull. "But no dunk was more satisfying than Veektor with a reverse (on a bullet pass from Tyrus), followed by Mike Tirico laughing it off only to be chastised by Hubie Brown for disrespecting a pivotal member of the Russian national team."
PG: D.C. Sports Bog. Gilbert Arenas is making friends, many of whom are much younger than Gilbert, via MySpace. Reports Dan Steinberg: "He was like, 'I'm Gilbert,' " Garrett told me ‘It was like, 'obviously.' "
6th: The Painted Area. Their first post in a month, thank Jeebus, detailing the collected works of Bill Russell. Great post.
7th: CNBC isn't the channel that shows English Parliament on Sunday nights, unfortunately, but they do employ Darren Rovell, and he is discussing the top-selling NBA jerseys. KG and the Celtics are pulling away with this thing.
8th: Hoopsanalyst. Harlan Schreiber with the transactions breakdowns.
9th: The Secret Weapon. Today's secret? Brendan Haywood's consistent ways with all the basketballin'.
10th: TrueHoop. H-O-R-S-E is back at NBA All-Star Weekend. P-I-G? Get bent.

From trade bait to willing to wait
Shawn Marion, Andrei Kirilenko and Kobe Bryant all wanted trades last summer. Randy Hill says they seem settled in now.

Behind the boxscore, where Miami encourages layups, sideburns
Chicago 126, Miami 96

The Miami Heat just hate playing defense. They'll show up to the arena and put socks on and jump around when Miami's annoying-as-hell PA announcer screams things in English and Spanish even in the midst of a 25-point blowout ... but the Heat still won't play defense. Not even when you pay them.

Chicago entered the game averaging about 103 points per 100 possessions on the season, good for 27th in the NBA. On Wednesday they scored 137 points per 100, and for comparison's sake it should be noted that the Suns are first in the NBA with 114.7 points per 100, and that the Miami Heat don't like to run much. Also, Aaron Gray's sideburns are coming in quite nicely.

Indiana 125, Golden State 117

This is what happens when you rely on players who aren't natural three-point shooters to take and make a ton of threes for the win. Golden State reeled off the game's first 11 points, but slowly swung back to earth as Stephen Jackson (1-8 from long range) and Baron Davis (1-5) kept feeding the Pacer fast break with long rebounds.

Jackson and Davis combine to shoot about 13 three-pointers a game, but they also combine to make about a third of those attempts, and that's going to catch up to the Warriors on certain nights.

Even with a gimpy Jermaine O'Neal leaving the game in the first quarter with a sore knee, the Pacers out-rebounded the W's by 20 in the win.

My fingers hurt from all those posts I put up yesterday, so most team nicknames I write today will consist of the first letter of the team's name, an apostrophe, and an "s." You're welcome.

Toronto 116, Sacramento 91

Not a stretch to say defense was the problem for the Kings in this loss. Toronto used Sacramento's pressure against itself, spreading the floor and making the extra pass and coming away with the win. 34 assists on 43 field goals for the Raps on Wednesday. That'll work.

Sacramento's hoped-for opening night roster is back (Kevin Martin, Ron Artest, and Mike Bibby all came off the bench and played just under 30 minutes a piece), but it matters little when Carlos Delfino and his pomade are dropping 27 points, seven rebounds, and six assists in 33 minutes.

Charlotte 99, Orlando 93

Dwight Howard is what the kids call a "friggin' beast," but he's not allowed to be a "friggin' beast" for 48 minutes at a time if he can't get the friggin' ball. See how I did that?

Off memory, Howard had something like 42 points and 98 rebounds in the first quarter, but the Bobcats turned up the pressure and forced the Magic into a series of turnovers, and pulled out the win. Howard, usually turnover-prone, only had two in 42 minutes. It was his teammates ... yeah, they're the problem. Quote me on that. I'm onto something.

New York 111, New Jersey 105

The Nets cared in the beginning, especially when Jason Kidd was getting everyone alley-oop dunks, then they didn't care for a while, then they cared again towards the end, and they still lost. To the Knicks. Vince Carter?

"We had our engine ready, something we haven't done the last couple of games."

Your engine just got its ass handed to it by the Knicks. Your engine is horrible.

Milwaukee 87, Atlanta 80

I didn't watch this one because the Bucks and the Hawks were playing. Even though both teams are crap defensively (the Hawks are improving, but not at an "Aaron Gray's sideburns"-rate), Milwaukee and Atlanta combined to shoot 37 percent from the floor and miss 23 out of 30 three-pointers.

Brew Hoop?

"[Andrew] Bogut confirmed our suspicions that if he played his 82-game schedule against only the Hawks, he'd be a All-Star shoe-in."

That's the stuff dreams are made of, right there.

Boston 100, Portland 90

Pretty gutty performance from Ray Allen on Wednesday, who overcame a pinched nerve and a hitch in his jumper (you flinch just watching the guy) to have his best game of the season. Allen dropped in 35 points on 20 shots as the C's kept the Trail Blazers at arm's length for most of the second half.

Rookie point guard Gabe Pruitt played double-figure minutes for the first time since late November, and while he didn't have a good game (two points, one assist, missed five of six shots), he didn't turn the ball over in 12 minutes of play. Honestly, that's all Boston needs: a point man that doesn't screw up for something like 12-14 minutes a night. And some Lanolin. They will require Lanolin.

New Orleans 123, Seattle 92

The Hornets play a slow-down game, so 123 points is pretty damn impressive. Especially with that crummy bench and Morris Peterson shooting only 1-9 and Chris Paul only taking 13 shots and ah, crap I just saw the word "Seattle" up there. Never mind.

SuperSonics rookie Kevin Durant, honestly, may have had his best game of the season. 20 points on 9-15 shooting, seven rebounds and six assists in 29 minutes.

Shocking dialogue: Jamaal Tinsley suspended

From the Indianapolis Star:

"The Indiana Pacers suspended Jamaal Tinsley for Wednesday night's game against Golden State following an incident during a film session one day earlier, The Star has learned.

What exactly happened during the session is unknown."

Not true.

Pacers coach Jim O'Brien: "Here's where I want you to shoot a three-pointer, squaddle deedle-dee, shoot another three-pointer here, blippity bloop ..."

Tinsley: "Why'd you have to sit like that?"

Obie: "Like what?"

JT: "Like that?"

Obie: "I'm standing. Like where?"

JT: "In the coaches photo. You sit, three guys stand to your right, two to your left. It's unseemly. It's off-kilter. Geometrically uncouth. An affront to my sensibilities!"

Obie: "I don't understand what that has to ..."

JT: "I come into work almost every day, see that picture hanging in the hallway, and I have to touch 14 doorknobs and David Harrison's neckbeard just to get back to normal."

Obie: "Like you can talk, remember that Pistons game where you let Jeff Foster touch your head in the first quarter?"

JT: "Yeah."

Obie: "Creepy guy went off for nine first half rebounds."

JT: "Yeah."

Obie: "Comes off the bench in the third quarter, wants to touch the head again, and what do you do?"

JT: "Is this about the towel?"

Obie: "Yeah, ‘it's about the towel.'"

JT: "I don't understand what the problem is. It was an affront to my sensibilities. It had to stop. Like the dye-job."

Obie: "What dye-job?"

JT: "You've been a head coach for seven years now. All this time you've had sideburns the color of cooked halibut, some white directly above it, and then jet-black hair."

Obie: "First off, quit comparing colors to "cooked halibut." Dunleavy Jr. cried for weeks the first time you tried that. Secondly, yeah, I'm getting older. It's what happens."

JT: "No, no it's not 'what happens.' If it's 'what happens,' then it would be blended. You don't go from stark white to dark black in half a centimeter. How do you think I feel when Stephen Jackson texts me to tell me that my coach and Bonnie Raitt share a barber? It's an affront to my sensibilities!"

Obie: "Say that one more time, and you're suspended."

JT: "A suspension without pay?"

Obie:� "Yes."

JT: "But that would be an affront to my sensibilities!"

And ... scene.

Somebody better get traded soon. I'm all out.

Nature of Nene's tumor still unknown
The testicular tumor removed from Denver Nuggets forward Nene was benign, according to a statement posted on the player's Web site Thursday. The tumor was removed Monday at a Denver hospital. "The joint medical team handling Nene's health has just released the results of the biopsy," the Web site said. "According to reports presented by doctors, the exams show that the tumor is benign." The statement said more information would be released later Thursday.

Marbury set for ankle surgery on Tuesday
Knicks point guard Stephon Marbury will have surgery on his left ankle and is out indefinitely. Marbury decided to have surgery after an MRI on Thursday during a second visit with Dr. William Hamilton, a specialist who earlier this week found that Marbury had inflammation around a chronically fractured bone spur. The surgery is expected to be on Tuesday. Marbury said Wednesday he would try to return this season, even if the Knicks are well out of the playoff race.

Will Magic pull disappearing act again?
Is another fairy tale start about to go downhill in Orlando? Mike Kahn thinks the Magic can still avoid a repeat of last year.

Message board madness: what would the Big O do in 2008?
It is part of NBA lore: in 1961-62, at age 23 an in just his second NBA season, Cincinnati Royals guard Oscar Robertson averaged a triple-double.

It gets better. Not only did Oscar average a triple-double, he went way beyond your typical, Jason Kidd-like, 13-point, 12-assist, 10-rebound effort. The Big O averaged 30.8 points, 11.4 assists, and 12.5 rebounds for a Royals team that won just 43 games and shot only 45 percent from the floor.

Even more impressive was the fact that, after five years in the NBA, Oscar was averaging 30.3 points, 10.6 assists, and 10.4 rebounds over his career. I think my math is sound. I think Oscar was brilliant.

But because there are bars and stools and beers and because arguments are so much fun, we can't help but wonder just how well those stats would translate to today's NBA. And we're not even getting into the, "how would the Big O rank amongst today's athletic guards?" Forget that. Innovators get the benefit of the doubt, every time. You think people make fun of the first guy to play a keytar? Hardly. That guy was cool. People loved that guy.

The deep-thinkers at the Association for Pro Basketball Research message board, however, do want to take a look at just what Oscar would average today, given that the NBA is an entirely different game. And, before you answer with bluster, this needs to be pointed out:

It was a much, much faster game back then. There were more possessions to go around, more chances to shoot, and more chances to compile stats. Teams averaged a good 2,000 more shot attempts per season back then in comparison to 2006-07, and the league's average shooting percentage was 42.6. That's pretty lousy. That leads to a lot of rebounds. That leads to a lot of chances to drop 40.

Then again, assists were much harder to come by. You essentially had to throw a pass and have your teammate chuck the ball with 1/128th of a second upon receiving it in order to garner an assist. So the opportunities accrued from the higher shot attempts and faster pace may have been mitigated by the difficulty in grabbing the assist, and the difficulty in getting these chumps to make a shot.

So take a look at the APBR's findings, and have your say in the comments section here. After that, call your Mom. She misses you.

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