Sunday, April 20, 2008


This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

This was the type of game the Cavs like to play and often win. It was close most of the way and in the fourth quarter it was largely a halfcourt game with lots of bumping and bruising. This is not how every game will go, but some will. Ultimately, the Cavs won because they were at home and they had the best player on the floor. You know, like thousands of playoff games over the years.

Read the Rest After the Jump...

Monday, January 07, 2008

Live Blogging the BCS National Title Game

...for no real reason. Just felt like doing it. Yep. Pretend national championship game coverage after the jump.

I am a few minutes late to this party (which is OK, because no one is reading this). Actually, perfect timing, Jamario O'Neal just returned the opening kick off not very far.

Todd Boekman's first pass attempt results in him flat on his back and missing his receiver by three yards and Chris Wells - this is the man they call "Beanie," no? - doesn't do much better on second down. Sweater Vest dials up a nice pass play on third down for the conversion.

Remember how Beanie Wells didn't do a damn thing on second down? Well, he just did the complete opposite of that for like 60-some yards. Well then. 7-0 Buckeyes with 13:34 left in the first. I wish I woulda had the guts to pick OSU. I knew this shit was gonna happen.

I don't know Les Miles' coaching strategy perfectly, but I am willing to say he is going to make one borderline crazy call - going for it on fourth and 12, faking a punt from his own end zone, something - and I wonder if it is going to come now....nope, LSU settles for the FG. 10-3, slow guys from the North.

Beanie Wells is gashing the LSU front seven. He is gonna get some more stickers on his helmet, I think. Did anyone from Ohio State ever fill up their whole helmet with stickers? I'm not making fun - I think it is a cool tradition, actually - but what happens if they fill the whole helmet up?

LSU muffs a punt at the 15! Huge pile of people, but somehow LSU retains possession. I hate when mad dudes just pile on forever and won't let the refs get to the bottom of the pile. If you have no shot at the ball, you should get a penalty for doing that. I hate that shit.

Early Ducet gains 6 yards on his third catch of the game to close out the first. Gotta like how it is going, Buckeye fans.

I just realized that little "Hype it Up!" button is in the wrong place. I don't know how to fix it. You may just have to live with it. I am sorry though.

Matt Flynn is opting to leave his mouthpiece lodged in the top of his facemask instead of inserting it into his mouth. I don't know why, but he is. His choice, I guess.

Tedd Ginn Jr on the sidelines rocking a flat-brimmed White Sox hat and Mardi Gras beads, barking furiously into some wide receiver's ear - Hartline? What could he possible be talking about? His experience here last year (come to think of it, he did do pretty well for himself)? Maybe tales from a 1-15 season? I don't think I'd let him on my sideline; he seems like bad luck.

Boy, LSU is really screwing the pooch to get things started here. A Charles Barkley-tuuuurrible snap from center leaves LSU with 4th and 24 from their own 5. Hartline runs the punt back to the 41.

Break up the Buckeyes! Boeckman hits a wiiiiiiiide open dude down to the 15 yard line. LSU looks completely baffled. This is why it is so great that college football's champion is decide on the field.

OSU will settle for a FG after Boeckman can't find anyone open on second or third down. 10-0, Buckeyes. Lotta time left though, LSU, lotta time.

Chris Myers is a shmuck. Unless they make him talk about this cheesy shit, then its cool. But if this is the stuff he comes up with on his own? Shmuck.

This doesn't really feel like a big game right now. Is that just me? I think its the announcers. Or FOX. Both suck.

Hester busts through the line for a 20 yard pick up, followed by Flynn hooking up with Early Ducet along the sideline for the second time tonight. LSU looks like they may have realized why there are so many people watching them this evening.

Nine-yard game out of the "pistol" formation for LSU. I am intimately with the pistol: I had a dynasty one time in NCAA in the WAC with my brothers and my little brother had to be Nevada and all they had was the pistol. We made fun of him mercilessly - seriously, the pistol sucked - until he whipped his controller across the room, punched me as hard as he could, told us all to shutup and stormed out of the room. Love the pistol.

I think Trindn Holiday just screwed up the play, becuase Flynn is yelling at him - really, say Trindon did stay in to block...buys you an extra, what? Half a second? It'd look like the commercial where Matt Hasslebeck's o-line gets picked up and chucked down field.

LSU is marching...the cameras catch a young lady from Louisisana in a purple and gold Snow White costume...surrounded by no one in a costume. Wonder if she just makes small talk with everyone like shes not dressed like a Disney character?

Tie game! Flynn finds his tight end wide open. This game is becoming very entertaining...too bad Fox hired that robot who jumps around before NFL games to announce this evening's contest.

Beanie Wells is a monster. He's a, he's a, he's a monster. What a freaking stiff arm. He basically just picked up a LSU d-back with one arm and threw him to the turf as he was running. Poor LSU dude looked like he'd been thrown from a truck on the freeway.

Ooooooooooooooooooh! Robiskie drops a touchdown pass - nice job by the corner to get his hand in there at the last second. This game is all about the big play. Craig Stetlz hurt his hand or something...we'll be back for the FG try when he's OK.

Blocked! Man, another big play. ESPN might actually be forced to show more than three highlights from this game before 17 experts tell me why they were wrong before the game.

I am not a fan of all this shameless promotion, but I really like "Jumper Cam."

I am not a fan of Charles Davis. At all.

Rarely do players actually look like waterbugs when announcers claim they do, but Trindon Holiday actually did look like a little bug right there. He skittered.

I take back what I said about big plays. OSU had needed the big play to score thier 10 points. LSU has more or less marched down the field. This bodes well for LSU, I think.

Touchdown, LSU. Flynn hits Brandon LaFell sprinting to the left corner. 17 straight for LSU. Ohio State has to have a sick feeling of deja vu right about now.

Charles Davis warns Ohio State not to let Glenn Dorsey become emotionally nor physically involved in this game. Control Dorsey's emotion, Ohio State. It is your only hope.

Ohio State's gameplan seems to be revealing itself: throw deep. LSU is catching on and picks off a Boeckman bomb and runs it back inside the 30. Two quick passes has LSU down to the 1. My favorite play from the 1? Back shoulder fade. It is 99% impossible to stop, surveys have shown.

LSU tries to run up the middle on first down and gets stuffed. Told ya. Same result on second down.

I really wish Charles Davis would shut up. No one cares what you would do with LSU's running back. Why don't you tell me why Les Miles is doing that with the running back? Thanks.

You know what All State? No one does care who the kicker is. Ever.

Hester punches it in and LSU is an extra point away from 24 unanswered points. I am pretty glad my not-to-be named former college roommates is an hour away; kind of a big OSU fan known for slamming dudes into walls who mouth off about the Buckeyes. Nice guy, though. Really, he is.

Ohio State is busy not doing a thing on offense, so they punt to LSU, who is content to go into the locker room content to be on pace for a 48-20 blow out. Here's hoping Ohio State makes this fun. Back after the half.

We open the second half with Jim Tressel staring intently into his giant play card. The front says "Run" and the back says "Pass Deep." I'd stick with "run," Jim.

He is going to have to get the ball back first, though. Staying true to form, however, LSU is picking up chunks of yards on every snap, zapping the clock in the process. A score here sucks for everyone except LSU fans.

Trindon Holiday skittered again. (In Lil John voice): Awwww skit skit skit!

Another first down for LSU. Know what sucks about this? Les Miles isn't going to get to call an awesome play. During routes we all lose.

Trindon Holiday just got closed lined. It was like a water bug on a windshield.

Matt Flynn intentionally grounds the ball, leaving LSU with third and really long near midfield. They have a nice lead, could play it safe....I think this is where Les Miles makes his mark. Let us see. Well, Les burns a time out to think it over. This is gonna be good.

That did not live up to my lofty expectations. LSU looks like they were gonna go deep, but it was covered; Flynn throws it into the ground. Well, at least it gives the Buckeyes a chance to make it interesting.

Scratch that. OSU roughs the kicker. You know what? Kickers need a little roughing. And it isn't like he tried to lay the punter out, he just missed the ball. What a dumb penalty.

LSU busts out the Pistol again and Hester breaks off an 9-yard run. Somehow a screen on the following play works and LSU is down to the 4. Seems like whatever LSU tries, it works. Aaaaand Early Ducet is the lucky beneficiary of two lousy tackles and LSU is now up by three scores. Looks like a might make my bed time.

If Ohio State wants to make this game remotely interesting, it needs a touchdown on this possession. Beanie Wells is averaging like 12 yards a touch. Let's get him the ball.

Seems LSU is aware that Beanie was gonna be getting the ball. Time to flip the play card over.

Apparently, LSU is playing man-to-man on OSU's wide receivers and then using the extra defenders to annihilate the run. This means that we are going to have to listen to how the South is so, so much faster than the North for the next month. This sucks.

Here we go! Malcolm Jenkins picks off Flynn and nearly runs it back to the house. OSU has the ball at the 11. 3:44 to go in the third: this is 4-down territory.

Man, Jenkins stepped out by like a pinky toe. Will this do anything to stop people from saying how much faster LSU is? Nope, definitely not.

On third and 1, Wells gets stuffed for about a 4 yard loss. Looking at 4th and 5 after that disaster. Sweater Vest is not phased: Buckeyes will go for it.

Touchdown! Hell of a catch from Robiskie, diving parallel to the goal line to snag a must-have conversion.

Charles Davis, after a nice OSU stop: "You feel the momentum? It hasn't shifted." You just let me know when something happens, momentum-wise, Charles. I can handle the rest myself.

I got a Sven for Christmas this year.

3rd and 7 for LSU at thier own 33. Flynn can't find anyone open, so he runs and is tackled. Punt time...I think a safe assumption would be that OSU has the return on. Doesn't matter, though, cuz LSU's punter booms it through the end zone.

Back-to-back first downs for the Buckeyes: Hartline for the first, Beanie for the second. Make that three in a row as Boeckman finds Robiskie.

Big third down coming up for Ohio State. Boeckman wanted the quick slant, it wasn't there and Boeckman paid for it. They'll go for it on fourth down.

Talk about your all time back fires. Boeckman gets drilled by the entire defensive line as he tries to throw, fumbles and the ball winds up going 30 yards the wrong way. If Jim Tressel has an easy button, now would be the time to use it.

LSU pulls out the pistol to kill some clock. Tressel looks like he'd put a pistol of his own to good use.

OSU will get the ball at their own 20. This is their last shot.

4th and 1. Here's the ballgame. Wells moves the pile and picks up the first.

Boeckman ends it with a pick and OSU's title dream mercifully comes to an end. Congrats to LSU for losing twice this seasons and winning the national title. Goodnight.

Read the Rest After the Jump...

Monday, July 16, 2007

What I Hope Happens on My Summer Vacation...

Aaaaaaand, we're back! I have no idea how long it has been since there was some original material, but, well...the fact that I can't even remember that far back probably isn't a good thing. Hopefully, this is the start of a nice, long streak of everyday posts, but we'll see. To be fair, the sporting world has been boring as hell lately, so it isn't as if there has been a plethora of material to talk about. That said, it is still inexcusable. I'd make a joke about some type of refund here, but I think that has already been done, and this is getting old anyways.

Since there isn't a damn thing going on, here is one man's wish list for the rest of summer...

I want... watch more tennis. The Federer/Nadal final at Wimbledon was riveting, and I don't even watch tennis. I think the last match I watched was like Federer/Roddick like a year ago when people were actually giving Roddick a chance (and before that, it was Michael Chang on, I loved Michael Chang. And Gladiators. And Wings. I can't believe there was a time in my life when USA was my favorite channel. Seems a little implausible, no?).

But back to Federer v. Nadal: That was just exciting TV. I don't really know what I am talking about, but Nadal seemed infinitely more exciting; it seemed like he wanted to obliterate every ball he hit and had no qualms trying to place the ball in improbably sports, which he did, like, most every time. Federer seemed like a stoic brick wall, even was he was smashing his racket and challenging balls even I could tell were out. It was just a perfect combination; I wanted it to last at least 45 more games.

I may be may off here, but it seemed kind of like Iverson vs. Duncan, which, if you think about it, would be a pretty fun one-on-one game to watch. And to keep the basketball analogy going, I love how tennis players can just stop a match for however long they feel like it and berate the ref (ump?) who sits in the little lifeguard tower (the NBA should definitely have one of those guys at center court). I kept expecting them to get a quick technical whenever they did this while their coach and their masseuse held them back....then I remembered that the NBA was over. 'Sheed should pick up tennis; he'd love the freedom.

But it makes me want to watch more tennis. I have no idea if there are any players outside of Federer and Nadal that can make a match that exciting, but I am willing to give it a try. And I'd love it if I had an American to cheer for. Right now, I am firmly entrenched in the Nadal Camp, but I'll gladly jump ship to a worthwhile American. Is Roddick my best bet?

...Tiger to come from behind in a major, preferably the British this week. It is really the only glaring hole in his resume, and I would like to see him amend it. It is a completely made up and arbitrary and contrived and idiotic hole in his resume, probably thought up by some screaming head who needed something to yell about on TV and I really just don't want to hear about it anymore. I really don't know how you can use it to discredit the guy.

Plus, it would help me win my argument that Tiger is the greatest athlete in the world right now, even better that Mr. Federer. Both of them seem to have one huge problem they need to tidy up before they basically perfect their craft. Federer needs to win on clay; Tiger needs a Major comeback win. That is what Skip Bayless tells me, anyways, and he is always right, because he yells the loudest.

I have a sneaking suspicion that Federer is slipping and Nadal is gaining (I am more than likely very, very wrong here) but when/if Nadal beats him on a surface other than clay and Tiger pulls off a comeback win? This completely made up, arbitrary, contrived argument is ova.

(Oh, and I am thrilled that the British is being held at Carnoustie this year. Van de Velde's six on eighteen is one of my favorite moments of all-time, sports or non-sports. I could watch that on a loop all day. I love how he takes it so seriously, like he is not screwing up at all, and then when he putts in to force a playoff- after heading into the hole with a freakin' 3 shot lead - he pumps his fist and screams like he just eagled to win the tourney. And I love him standing in the water with no socks or shoes on.)

...ESPN's "Who's Now" Contest to be changed. ESPN really dropped the ball on this one. Why only 32 athletes, which can only argued and debated over just the summer? Why not make it 128 entries? No, 256! A million! It is seriously an awesome debate, trying to decide who is the most "Now." Why can't it last for a whole year? I really don't get it, ESPN. You have an awesome host in Stu Scott (for real, he is so cutting edge), so why wouldn't you keep it going as long as possible? The ESPN brain trust had a good thing going, but it is only going to last until August? What the hell, ESPN? I don't want any more damn highlights! I don't want to see games and stuff....I want debate, and more of it! I feel cheated.

Screw the NCAA tournament; we need to get Jim Boehiem to rally for expansion, immediately. I don't know what Wilbon loves more, the "Who's Now" tourney or having Boehim on PTI to whin about only 64 teams getting in, so PTI can devote a whole day to this, with Stu Scott sitting in for Kornheiser! It's a win-win!

...the USA to dominate the Little League World Series. I want Team USA's cleanup hitter to have porkchop sideburns, a fu manchu, grab his cup more than A-Rod, chew and spit relentlessly and swing a bigger bat than Albert Pujols. I want just bomb after bomb; I want him to hit them so far that the little kids that scramble after the balls are exhausted by the time they get to them. I want Taiwan to demand to see a birth certificate.

I want a tall, lanky pitcher throwing "the equivalent" of a 137 major league fastball. I want a lead off hitter who can bunt a double. I want them all to have ridiculous celebrations and handshakes. I want stadiums to chant "U-S-A! U-S-A!"

I want them to capture the imagination of a country. get into baseball. I would like to use the US dominating the LLWS to spring board me back into loving baseball. I don't know why, but I just can't get into it. I really, really want to, but I just can't find the consistant motivation. Hopefully, an 11-year-old with three tattoos can do that for me.

U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A!

...Team USA dominating at whatever tournament it is that they are playing in this summer. C'mon fellas, just put it all together. Dominate. Win going away. Play as a team, play like it is fun, play with some energy, play with some inspiration, play like you want to be there. Give us a reason to cheer for you, other than the fact that it says "USA" on the front of your jersies. Give us a little confidence for the Olympics.

Give us a reason to chant U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A! I really, really just want to chant that a lot. blockbuster NBA trade. I don't even care who it is; the Ray Allen-to-Boston deal just didn't do it for me. Kobe to Memphis. KG to Golden St. If it could involve one side getting completely fleeced, that would be enjoyable, too.

Ideally, I'd like to see both Kobe and KG shipped to the East. I would love a more distributed balance of power. But I will take whatever I can get.

...something unpredictable, but insane, to happen. I don't know what...maybe like Gary Sheffield calling Joe Torre a racist or Ron Artest and Stephen Jackson both getting suspended...although if you though for about 30 seconds, you could come up with both those scenarios. I want a scandal that will creep into the headlines of the "regular" news, but not something as depressing as Mike Vick's dog-fighting ring.

Maybe Bonds breaking the record, then admitting he took steriods, while Selig is helpless to do anything about it. I want something soap opera-ish, that I can follow just a little too much for a month or two. Maybe Zach Randolph can do something at a strip club, I don't know. I just need something. learn how to use Ballhype. I have a vague idea how to use it, but I feel like my grandpa trying to figure out a DVD player. Someone just explain it to me. I don't get it. I am ashamed to admit it, but I don't get it. Help. Please.

Ballhype: hype it up!

Read the Rest After the Jump...

Monday, July 02, 2007

The Only NBA Draft Review That is Four Days Late and Doesn't Mention Either Greg Oden or Kevin Durant. Perfect.

Well, I'm a few days late to the party, but let's talk a little bit about the NBA Draft, anyways. Hey, July just started. What do you want to talk about? Baseball? (Just kiddin', baseball; we'll get around to you sooner or later.)

t things first: the three big trades.

Zach Randolph is a New York Knickerbocker. Say what you want about Isiah (like, for instance, that he can pinch your ass so hard that he will send you airborn, which is 100% true, by the way), but at least the man is consistent. I remember reading somewhere that Isiah's only thought process during a trade is, "Did I get the best player?" He certainly maintained that theme, If Eddie Curry was left-handed and didn't have a shaky ticker and liked strippers more, he'd be Zack Randolph, no? Isn't this the same as bringing in Stevie Franchise with Starbury already on the roster? Too bad they had to move Franchise in the deal; those four coulda filmed some Double Mint commercials for the Jumbotron or something. I have a sneaking suspicion that things absolutely explode in NY this year.

Jeff Green is Traded From One Green Team to Another Green Team. Hey, Brewer didn't go to Milwaukee; I need to get a lame pun in somewhere. I don't get why the Celtics just don't trade Paul Pierce. They aren't winning shit with Pierce & Allen, so what's the point? Why trade out of this draft, of all drafts? This trade does make both the Celtics and the Sonics about a hundred more times more interesting to watch next year, though, so that's something.

Also: the Celtics tanked for Ray Allen.

Brandan Wright taunts MJ; MJ immediately ships his ass to Golden St. I don't know which franchise won here - Golden St. loses a crucial part of the magical run to the second round last year, but gains the perfect big man for their style; Charlotte has a dude that they know they can get points out of every night, but they are paying a shit load for it - but I do know which player won: Brandan Wright. He gets to run around, guard no one and shoot lefty hooks in 80 degree weather instead of playing for UNC II.

Here's the big question: Why the hell does MJ even want to be a GM? Wouldn't he rather spend his time golfing, smoking cigars and grinding on his son's friends? I just don't get why a guy who has every conceivable luxury at his fingertips would spend his time trying to understand the salary cap and putting together a draft board, especially when he's terri
ble at it. If he likes the NBA that much, why not just crash "Inside the NBA" for weeks at a time? Him and Charles would be money.

Some other loose ends...

--Do you think Jerry Krause was sitting back at the office, getting phone calls after every pick, sweating it out every time the phone rang (not because he was nervous, just because I bet he sweats a lot) and then being thrilled his man fell to No. 9? Then he flicks on ESPN just to see him shake hands with The Commish and is greeted by this:

How fast do you think he wanted to throw up? Instantly? Has any team ever had a faster case of buyer's remorse? I mean, good God, just look at Noah there. He seems like the kind of guy who does shit he thinks is hilarious but is willfully ignorant to the fact that everyone is laughing at him and not with him. Like, all the time. What a jackass. How fast til Stern has him killed?

All that aside...what is the point of that pick from Chicago? They needed another limited who can't score on that ro
ster? They drafted him so they could trade a guy they just signed last year? Which Paxson is running the Bulls again?

--When Jay Bilas was talking about Big Baby's weight problem, he said he was, and I'm paraphrasing here, a "weight loser, but had trouble keeping it off. He's much like Oprah in that regard." How long do you think he was waiting to say that? He had to be positively
agonizing while watching him drop to the second round. It was pretty funny, though - not nearly as funny as Mike Tirico made it out to be; seriously, Mike, calm down - but it was funny. Good one, Duke Boy.

--I am glad that Rod Thorn wasn't deterred by Sean Williams' minor indiscretion of getting kicked off his college team (to be honest, if I had to play with Jared Dudley, I would have been hittin' the pipe pretty hard, too). So, Rod, why exactly did you take Mr. Williams? "He's a player who had over 1200 on his college boards, so he's a guy who has a brain." Apparently, that's all it takes to get drafted by the Nets.

-- I love how Yi Jianlian is pulling a Steve Francis here, but since he isn't actually Steve Francis, no one is really making that big of a deal out of it. Yi is being a complete prima donna here and he actually has an entire government backing him up. Imagine if the US Senate was all for Steve Francis getting the hell out of Vancouver back in the day? Seriously, this tops all prima donna behavior before it - this is more extreme than Bryant or Elway or Drew. No one else has an entire government backing them.

And they don't even have a good reason, like, I don't know, he wants more playing time or he wants more money. He thinks he can't get marketed properly! How is this not prima donna material? Yi is the poster child with everything that is wrong with professional sports today.

-- The Blazers and the Suns seem to have different draft strategies, don't they? The Blazers will draft freaking anybody, they'll trade for your picks, they'll buy it off you...seriously, do you have a pick? The Blazers want it.

The Suns, on the other hand, hate the draft. Hey, Stern, if you're reading this, don't even give PHX a pick next year because they want nothing to do with it. They've sold a pick now four years running. So they are firmly entrenched in "win now" mode, right? So why the hell don't they trade for KG? All this three-way crap...why not cut to the chase and swap KG for Amare, straight up, win the next two titles, and then go back to actually drafting people, like everyone else?

Ballhype: hype it up!

Read the Rest After the Jump...

Thursday, June 28, 2007

The NBA Draft is Tonight: Honk Honk!

Some things I want to see during tonight's NBA Draft, aside from gaudy suits, mother's weeping uncontrollably, and guys who have posses with more members than the franchise that just drafted them...

I want to see Kevin Durant go No. 1 overall, for a few reasons:

First, I can't think of anyone covering the draft for ESPN - all 20 of 'em - who wouldn't have a complete and utter breakdown live on TV. It would be akin to airing the apocalypse live, I think. You could be watching the draft on mute, and Stephen A. Smith would still find a way to shatter your speakers. This, it goes without saying, is something I would be interested in viewing (while munching on some Cheese Doodles, of course).

Second, it's the right pick, I'm pretty sure. I just think Durant is the best player in the draft, regardless of position. (and Hollinger is backing me up. I have no friggin' idea how he arrived at his conclusion, but 870.7 is really, really high. That article deserves its own post because of how phenomenal and ground-breaking it is; I don't think it is a stretch to say it could revolutionize the way NBA teams go about drafting.) I know centers are inherently more valuable, but aren't you supposed to take the best player? If you are, that's Durant.

The thing that seals the deal: Do you ever, ever see Oden putting a team on his shoulders and winning a Finals game? Or even a playoff game? I just don't. On a good team, he is one hell of a piece...but I think, eventually, Durant can do what LeBron did and single-handedly win a game or a series by himself.

And besides, if he goes No. 1, he can finally get a nickname: "Honk Honk." Man, that sounds dumb as hell, but I just want to call him Honk Honk, if only for a week. Hey, it is better than KD.

And speaking of nicknames, can Mr. Oden just go by "Hermey" from now on? Please? Oden has said over and over again that he wants to be a dentist. I am familiar with no one that comes close to matching Greg's affinity for the art of oral hygiene. (And the fact that Greg has a more deep-seated desire to adjust the headgear of unfortunate teenagers than he does to dominate a basketball game seems to be a fairly strong indicator, at least to me, that Durant is the pick. But that's just me.)

So: Honk Honk No. 1, followed by Hermey at the two spot. Three-year olds everywhere rejoice.

I want to see the Hawks screw this up. The whole thing, the third pick and the 11th. I really don't know how they could do it - you could easily make solid cases for Horford or Conley at three, and 11 is pretty much gravy - there is going to be a good PG sitting there. I want them to take, like...Yi at 3 and then follow that up with Josh McRoberts at 11, just because they promised him they would for no good reason. I'd gladly give them a standing round of applause for that. (No matter who they take, though, they are going to look sweet. Or, at the very least, successful. Baby steps, ATL, baby steps.)

Just thinking: If you were Mike Conley, would you want
any part of Atlanta? At all? Not only are you going to be compared to Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Raymond Felton, hell, even Brandon Roy for the rest of your life, but you are going to be expected to resurrect a franchise that is the poster child for NBA contraction. If I am Mike Conley, I make it abundantly clear that I will be pulling a Stevie Franchise if the Hawks draft me.

I want Joakim Noah to either go to the Grizz at No. 4 - because, really, who cares - or to plummet like the NBA's version of Brady Quinn. My dream scenario is that he is the last guy in the green room, he makes a jackass of himself in the process (wearing an outfit that is particularly douche-bagish) and then is drafted by someone where he promptly fades into Bolivian...someone like Sacramento, a KG-less Minny or Memphis. I really, really just never want to hear from him again. Really, who hasn't had enough of Joakim Noah? The sooner he goes away, the better.

I'd like to see Brandan Wright end up on the Bobcats. Raymond Felton, Sean May
and B Wright? In North Carolina? With MJ calling the shots (kinda)? Good God, they could snag Reyshawn Terry in Round 2, draft Wayne Ellington next year, hire Dean Smith to coach them. Then, halfway through some game late in the season, they can ditch their Bobcats threads for their old Tar Heel jerseys, a la the Ducks ditching their Team USA sweaters in favor of the classic Duck look. I really believe this could work.

(Unreal: I unwittingly stumble across
another dentist: Wolf "The Dentist" Stansson. "Team USA's going down, that's where you're going!")

I want to see Stuart Scott interview Yi Jianlian. I want Yi to cut his interpreter off halfway through his response and ask Stu, in perfect English, "Why do you talk like that? Do you expect me to believe that is the way you talk around the house, with your wife or your kids? Everyone knows it is a big act and you are a complete phony. I don't even speak English and I can tell. It isn't funny or engaging; as a matter of fact, it is really grating and makes an already difficult interview that much harder. Now, if you have a legitimate question, just ask it like a normal person and I'd be happy to answer it, but if you insist on speaking to me like that, I have better things to do. Thank you."

I want Jared Dudley to end up on the Spurs. That'd be absolutely perfect.

I would like to see Coach Bill Fuller draft a girl and then demand that Sacramento change its court's dimensions to 10 feet by 15 feet.

I want to see who the Lakers draft. I am
dying to see who they draft. I'd love to see them draft a couple of projects. Maybe take Daquean Cook in the first round (Isiah: "Get me Kupcheck on the line!") and then follow that up with Aaron Gray. That would delight me to no end. Maybe we could get a video from Kobe that is a whole minute long!

I want to see someone use a second round pick on Jared Jordan. Or maybe no one takes him, and the Cavs sign him. Yea, I'd like that better.

Finally, I would like to see an absurd trade. Just ridiculous, like the Hawks giving up both picks, Amare in Atlanta, KG in PHX, Kobe in Chicago, Gordon and Deng in LA....something kinda like this.

Ballhype: hype it up!

Read the Rest After the Jump...

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Live Blog: Cavs vs. Pistons, Eastern Conference Finals, Game 6

Sorry, I'm a little late to the party...I'm guessing I missed the Cavs open the game by throwing the ball into Big Z and Z responding with his obligatory awkward missed hook shot. I'm glad Cleveland has no problem wasting its first possession of each game.

This game is going to be a letdown and I am completely fine with that. There is no way on earth to possibly even come close to the game 5. All I want out of this game is a win; the final score could be 3-2 and I would be more than thrilled. Game 5 made the entire playoffs completely worthwhile and nothing else that happens from here on out can taint it.

All I want is a win, and I really don't care if it comes tonight or in Game 7, although it would be much, much better if it came tonight.

The rest of the live blog will be, as always, after the jump.

First Quarter

From what I can tell, the Pistons got off to a quick start but the Cavs D has gotten them back into it somewhat. LeBron is still without a field goal attempt.

I don't think the Cavs have gotten a stop since I turned in the TV. Cripes, fellas. At least they are scoring at the other end - Larry Hughes already has a pair of threes, and Sasha is being aggressive. Z, of course, has a tip in, two missed hook shots and 97 dribbles taken. 15-14 Cleveland in the early going.

Rip drills a three...he is so good at his midrange game I am always stunned when he hits a three. I feel like he isn't strong enough to get it there or something.

Billups hits a three to push the lead to 4....the pace of this gme is out of control. Compared to the first 5 games, this is Suns/Warriors on HGH. Back after the break.

Sasha off to a quick start. I was one game early on that "Sasha will do awesome" prediction.

Christopher Webber picks up a technical for...I am nut entirely sure. I think he was yelling at someone on the Cavs. Make that a double tech; the refs hit Sasha with one, too. Oh! Webber just two hand shoved Andy (I have no idea how to type "Varejao" with any type of consistency, so it is Andy from here on out.) in the chest. What a duchebag (I also do not know how to spell that). LeBron hits the free throw to tie it at 19.

matt said...

There ya are.

The Cavs are playing a little too much show time no look crap for the crowd. Dudes- just play your ugly ass usual style b-ball. That's what got you here.

No joke. The pace of this game is weird; I have no idea where it came from. It'll settle down eventually...I think both teams are just ramped up; Detroit is playing for their lives and Cleveland is a game away from the Finals. Hard to blame either of them, really. Cavs up one as we head to commercial. Just over two minutes left.

LeBron with his FIFTH assist so far; he finds Andy cutting down the middle. 22-21, Cavs.

The Pistons spring a quick trap on Hughes and he is completely baffled by it. Jump ball. Bobbie is in the game, just let him bring it up instead of Mr. Casual. Honestly, if Larry Hughes raced Chauncey Billups...would that be the least exciting thing ever? Both those guys show about as much enthusiasm as

Oh, Andy with a nice finish and draws a second foul on Webber. Nazr Mohammed checks in and has his shot imeediately blocked; guess he is a little rusty since he's only played four minutes the entire post season. Next possession for the Pistons: Del Fino picks up the offensive foul. Man, Flip...Mohommed AND Delfino? I guess he is just saying "Screw it, it doesn't matter who we play, this game is getting decide in the fourth."

Mohammed fouls Boobie on a three with 2.2 second left. Man, Nazr is screwing up. I like when he's in. Boobie makes 2 of 3 and the Cavs end the first up, 27-21. 27! Good God, Cleveland, you are an offensive juggernaut.

Second Quarter

LeBron seemed oddly fired up that quarter...not screaming and stuff, but his passes had a little extra flair, making them no looks, jump passes....not that I am complaining; you might never hear my criticize the man ever again. I have become oddly defensive of LeBron after his game 5 performance, especially in response to any idiot who says "Well, hey, that's what happens when he plays hard!" Bullshit. He could play that hard for his entire career - hell, anyone could - and never see a performance like that. That was other wordly. Even things I bashed him for - like not playing hard or always seeming interested - I can't criticize him for anymore. I just can't. I'm too in awe.

The buzzer is malfunctioning, so we are treated to Craig Sager with an airhorn. That sounds like a terrific name for a blog, doesn't it? "Craig Sager's Airhorn." I like it.

The Cavs and Pistons players are all just chilling on the scorer's table while LeBron munches on his nails. I don't mind the nailbiting habit that much, but how the hell does he have any nails left to chew? He does it every single game...he had to have finished with the fingernail ages ago, I'm sure by now he is down to the skin and I wouldn't be stunned if he was gnawing on bone by this point. Maybe his nails regenerate faster than everyone else's though, like John Lock's finger on Lost. That would make sense to me.

Marv asks if this feels like a rain delay. Point 23 says yes. Back when the quarter starts.

Steve Kerr is talking about LeBron's dominance, and I am paraphrasing: "You see him dominate and forget he is only 22..he makes you forget that he is doing it against some of the greatest athletes in the world." As he is saying this, the camera pans to Donyell Marshall and Chris Webber, shattering any believability that statement had.

This delay is taking forever, we are on our third commercial break. Who does the delay hurt more? Well, the Cavs were on some kind of a run, so any momentum they had was killed, so probably them. But here is my thinking: this break is at least as long as a halftime, so this is going to trick the Cavs into thinking the third quarter is about to start. So they will suck in the second, then play great in the third, which they think is the fourth, and play even better in the fourth, which they think is overtime.

They are scrambling all over the place looking for clocks and horns and stuff...why the hell don't they have backup equipment like, under the scorer's table? I think they've settled on shot clocks in the corner, three different people have stop watches for time, and someone gets an airhorn for the buzzer. Good God, I have come up with better schemes in the driveway when I was 11.

Marv: "Do you feel like you are watching a Peter Sellers movie?" I have no idea who that is. Anyone?

The PA guy is counting down the shot clock in some deep, disembodied voice from the future. Whenever he says 10 seconds, everyone starts speeding up, like when the music stats going faster on Mario Brothers. Sleep Marshall seems OK with it, though: he sticks a three to push the lead to nine, 30-21.

Sheed hits a bucket at the same time as a defensive three seconds, and if they happen at the same time, you count he bucket. I did not know that.

Hunter picks up the foul as LeBron drives, who is about the fifth different Piston to guard him. Why not just pick two and have BOTH of them guard him? One doesn't seem to work to good, does it Flip?

LeBron picks off a pass and gets out in transition...Sheed AND Hunter foul him, but somehow the refs call neither.

This game has such a weird feel to it, with The Voice counting down and no clocks feels like an open gym or something, but really, it is the most important game of the NBA season.

Andy steals a pass in the paint, ignores LeBron who is begging for a outlet pass, goes coast to coast - going behind the back at half court, mind you - and then, and you are not going to believe this, he throws up the ugliest layup of the Second Season which, shockingly, misses badly. Surprising; ee usually pulls that one off. Cavs up 4.

Sheed hits a jumper and is fouled. He has nine points already and is playing really well. Damnit.

Oh, Good God, I can't breathe. Boobie goes flying into the paint, makes the bucket and is fouled, but he is laying on the ground, writing in pain.

Oh, OK, he's fine...he's just a little dramatic. I can live with that as long as it leads to three-point plays.

Gibson fouls Rip in the act of shooting. That is like the fourth time that has happened already and Gibson gives opponents, on average 2.1 three point play attempts per game in games in which he plays at least 12 minutes*. That isn't good, Boobie.

*I made that statistic up.

I'm gonna agree with Doug Collins here: LeBron has been out a while, and considering he slept in until 2 pm yesterday and there was a half hour delay already this game, does he really need the rest? The Pistons have it within 2 and the Cavs offense look atrociously disjointed.

Bron checks back in as we go to commercial.

Sheed is killing it. He follows up his own airball with a dunk in which he did his best to rip the rim off. He is keeping the Pistons in this game.

Rip spends the entire time LeBron is at the line bitching to Eddie Rush, who then waits about 4 seconds before calling a bullshit foul on Boobie in favor of Rip. That is bullshit. Either way, Rip makes both. Pistons down two, 41-39.

Rip scores over Gibson again. He has 16, but a quite cuz I didn't even think he was in double figures yet. Game tied at 41 as my man Boobie gimps off the court. Just under 4 minutes left.

LeBron grabs a defensive board, works his way up court, and then explodes to the rim. I love when he does that. He knocks down both freebies. He has only shot twice and all his points are from the FT line.

Pistons up one with just under two minutes left; a patented Chauncey Billups "turnover-bad shot-turnover" would be really nice right now.

Oh, man. LeBron comes over from the week side and rejects Rip's shot with his elbow. Damn, Rip. Rip then commits a stupid foul, his third of the game. I'm calling it now: he is gonna get throw outta this game. He already has one tech and he is bitching non-stop. If the Cavs go on some kind of a run, he's gonna snap.

Tied at 48 at the end of the first half. That first half blog was a disjointed as the first half; the game just had a really goofy feeling to it. I don't know if it was because the teams were a little out of it, playing different styles, or because there are no clocks and God is counting down the shot's just weird. We'll try better in the second half.

Third Quarter

Alright, we've said it every game so far: let's see what the Cavs do in the third quarter. I'm hopeful.

Z misses to start the half. Ha. You can only laugh at that. It works like one outta twenty times.

Hey! The clocks are working! Apparently, LeBron was pretty pissed they weren't working. Uh oh, Detroit. Bron Bron is angry. Gooden knocks down that baseline J: Good sign. Billups answers with a step back J: bad sign.

Rip scores in transition, but he is bitching again...he's been a pretty big punk right now.

Sasha musta got jacked in the side of the head, because he is holding his ear and silently screaming. Mike Brown tells him to suck it up and leaves him in. Sasha responds by driving into three guys and committing an offensive foul. Some good did come of it, though: he kneed Webber in the nuts and he is on the ground holding his balls. I was not aware he had any.

How strong is LeBron? He drives and has Prince hanging all over him, but still manages to score. Prince has to weight, what, 190, 200 ounces? What a beast.

Offensive foul on Webber, who heads right to the locker room to get the sand out of his (expletive deleted). Is there medical treatment for that? Like, besides crying?

You know how Varejao is awesome at drawing charges? Like he gets one, two, sometimes three a game? Sasha is the exact opposite. Once he starts moving, he refuses to stop no matter what gets in his way, even Chris Webber's nuts. He just got his second offensive foul in the last two minutes.

How the hell does Z get so many offensive rebounds? I get that he's huge and all, but he can't jump OR move...just get in front of him and it is all yours. Either way, Cleveland takes the lead, 58-56.

LeBron misses a pull up three...which if he would have made would have blown the roof off the Q. They are cheering consistently, you can hear some noise...but they are dying for a reason to lose their minds. Bron almost gave it to them.

My little comment notifier just started working again; let's catch up on some comments...
#4 said...

i love bron because he isnt forcing anything right now....most players coming off of a tremendous game might force some bad shots, unnecessary shots....but he has the intelligence that they are playing fine without him needing to do the same time, if it comes to it, he will take over...hes doing what he needs win and not trying to be the next MJ...i respect the shit outta that.....

He used to get hammered for that, but as soon as they win this series, every basketball mind in the world will praise the hell outta him for "playing the right way." I love it.
matt said...

Allright #4! WOOOO!

Weird 2nd Q, the clock delay made it like a third Q for the Cavs. That sucks. BUT- tied without LBJ even trying yet. That's gotta be a good sign.

As a fan I really hat this clock thing- it must be bizarre as hell for the players. It has even taken the crowd out. They NEED to fix this.

LBJ is about to go off now that all the clocks are fixed. Just you watch.

Drew Gooden with a ludacris hook shot...his elbow wasn't even bent. And, of course, it was on the baseline. How ya like me know, Nick Collison?

Man, the Pistons are killing the Cavs on the offensive glass. They are getting two and three chances each possession, but it doesn't really matter because they are playing Lindsey Hunter and Dale Davis, who, as you know, suck at shooting.

Boobie! My man drills a three from the corner. Cavs take the lead, 65-63.

Boobie realy has a sense of the moment, doesn't he? Throw out the 21-point performance, and just concentrate on WHEN he was scoring...they might not have been buzzer beaters, but most of his threes come at really, really ideal times for Cleveland. Love it.

Varejao just shot a three from the corner. You read that correctly. The shot clock wasn't even at 0. What the hell. It would be better if he just threw it out of bounds, at least that way the Cavs could set up their D. What the hell.

Damon Jones misses a three at the nice if he made one of those every once in a while. Cavs up a point as we start the fourth. Sweaty palms

Fourth Quarter

I love Boobie. He just splashed a three with a hand in his face, no hesitation. Dude has some cajones. His mentality is friggin' perfect. Cavs up.

Lindsey Hunter and Flip Murray currently in Detroit's back court. Advantage: Cleveland.

Boobie with another three! Are you kidding me? We'll leave this one to Boobie's Moms...
Mrs. Gibson said...



If there was ever any doubt, LeBron James officially owns Cleveland. He comes out of nowhere for a steal, goes the length of the court and then lays it in with Lindsey Hunter hanging all over them. He capped it off by popping off the ground and pointing to the crowd with both hands as the place exploded. Never mind how dumb Lindsey Hunter is - seriously, he had no chance of stopping LeBron there - how great was the reaction? Perfect.

Boobie again for three! I can't even believe I am seeing this. What a fuckin stud. The Q is losing its damn mind. Cavs up 12!

Hamilton gets his fourth foul, reaching in on LeBron...they gotta get him off him, he isn't even that good off a defender and he is their only consistent scoring threat at the moment. You know what? Leave Rip on LeBron. Good call.

If LeBron scores here, this place is gonna explode. I mean, Boobie just drew a blocking call on Prince - who is sucking hard core, by the way - and the place lost it. If King James does something, the roof will blow off.

>blockquote>#4 said...

if you were an nba player wouildnt you celebrate with the crowd like that on a regular basis?
Oh, I would live for the fans. My go-to move would be the Iverson hand-to-the-ear, I-can't-hear-you, but I'd also point like a maniac, and if I hit a three in the corner, I'd slap five with the entire front row on my way back down the court. After big wins, I' be on the scorer's table like MJ, just screaming at the crowd.

Which is why LeBron's celebration was so perfect. He pointed to the entire city, and considering what that town as been through in its sporting history, that was no small gesture. He owns that city.

Oh, wow: Sheed gets called for an offensive foul on Varejao and then runs down the court screaming, somehow avoiding a T. I have no idea how, because even I hear him scream "That's fucking bullshit!"

Ah, there we go: Sheed gets called for another foul, fouls out, and then proceeds to lose his gah-damn mind. Didn't see that one coming.

Man, it took him forever to leave the court...he just flipped out. The entire Detroit bench was holding him back, he was yelling, pointing...he just lost it. It was awesome. Cavs up 83-69 with just under 8 to go.

Steve Kerr: "I think what you are seeing here is the end of an era." Well put, Mr. Kerr, well put.

Damon Jones misses ANOTHER three. Listen, I understand why he is in there, but with Boobie on fire and Sleepy Marshall out there, what's the point, really? He can't gaurd anyone...get Hughes out there

Boobie with his fifth three! There aren't enough exclamation points on my keyboard right now. What a freakin' stud.

matt said...

I don't know how I feel about this forever being known as "The Boobie Game".

Aww... fuck it. I'm good.

Oh, I can live with that. I am thrilled with that. The more help LeBron has, the better.

Hey, Damon Jones scored a layup! He looked really weird doing it, like he hadn't practiced one in a few years, which he probably hasn't. Cavs up 15. I really can't believe this.

Daniel Gibson - probably the smallest dude on the court - drops a tear drop over Tayshaun Prince. He has 31! This is unreal.

Flip Murray draws a foul on LeBron, his first. I can't believe Flip Murray is in with four minutes left. A Cleveland cast-off is getting crunch time minutes in the Eastern Conference Finals. Unreal.

Rip fouls out and is surprisingly subdued. If that woulda happened a few minutes ago, he probably woulda snapped, but he seems resigned to defeat, which is probably the right mind set.

This game is over. The Pistons have stopped trying to come back (I know this because Damon Jones got into the paint again, finding Andy for a wide open lay up). Cavs up 16 with two minutes left.

LeBron ices it with a fade away. Perfect.

I want to see LeBron run around with Boobie sitting on his shoulders.

LeBron launches the ball into the rafters, and this game is a wrap. Cleveland is going to the Finals, and there is no way I can possibly describe the emotion, so I'm not even going to try.

Cleveland is in the Finals.

Read the Rest After the Jump...

Friday, June 01, 2007

Trying to Put LeBron's Game 5 Into Some Type of Context

Words are not going to do it justice. The numbers, incredible as they are, do not do it justice. LeBron's Game 5 performance was just something you had to experience first hand. No secondary source could possibly come close to conveying what LeBron James did in Detroit last night.

It was that profound.

I am tripping all over myself trying to find the right superlatives to describe K
ing James' domiance, and I suspect I am not the only one finding it damn near impossible to boil it down to one definitive phrase. It was that monumental.

One thing I won't say - and I pray to God no one else does, either - is "finally." Bron has been criticized - and I wholeheartedly include myself in this category - of not living up to his potential; in this series alone he's been hammered for everything from his decision making to the way he plays in the third quarter to his overall output.

But his Game 5 performance was more than anyone has a right to expect from any player, ever. Much, much more. In any scout or coach's most far-flung scenarios, in their wildest dreams, no player at any point in basketball history should have that type of effort expected of him.

That performance was not something you expect, let alone think possible. The only appropriate response is to marvel and talk about it in hushed, reverent tones.

LeBron exceeded every single-game expectation anyone in their right mind could possibly have set for him. He annihilated it.

Where it ranks in the pantheon of all-time great individual performances in the history of the NBA is up to much wiser people than me; I just haven't been around long enough to make a fair assessment.

The one statement I can make with absolute conviction, though, is this: What LeBron did last night was the greatest performance in the post-MJ era and the second-place finisher is so distant that it isn't worth mentioning.

25 straight points to end a game? 29 of the last 30? That is so good it is absurd. That is a different sport. And every basket was bigger than the one before it. If he wasn't taking the lead, then he was tying the game or he was cutting a deficit or he was pushing the lead to two possessions. Every single time LeBron scored, it was a must have bucket. His team needed him to do it on his own more times than is even fair and he delivered every single time.

The only game I can think of off the top of my head that I could compare it to would be the Lakers coming back from 15 down to knock off the Blazers in the Western Conference Finals. But I'll take this game over that one in a heart beat. I would much rather watch a game where it was back-and-forth with multiple lead changes and huge bucket after huge bucket - by both teams - than a game in which you could say one team just choked the game away. Throw in that performance for the ages, and its a walk.

It goes without saying that this is the defining moment, so far, of young LeBron's career (it really is hard sometimes to keep in mind that he is just 22 years old), but can you ever imagine him topping this? For that matter, can you imagine anyone topping this? I am sure his career will have accomplishments that mean more in the grand scheme of things - championships, MVPs - but as far as single games go, I can't even fathom what the man would have to do to top this.

LeBron's career still has miles to go. But if this game isn't leading of his
Sports Century twenty years from now...well, I can't wait to see the game that tops it.

Have you ever seen a guy just take the ball like that and score every single time with no regard for his teammates or the other team? I haven't. Truly, I haven't.

Drew Gooden tried to say that he was"Video Game James" because only a player made out of pixels could possibly pull off what LeBron did Thursday night. But there is no way Drew - or anyone else for that matter - ever did anything that impressive even in a video game. Thoes types of shots? Step backs? Behind the back pull ups? Fade away threes over two defenders? On that stage, with that much pressure, getting that much help from his teammates? And throw in the clutch defensive plays, his effort on the glass and his seven assists and there is just no way. No way. LeBron James is better than a video game.

This was one of those games where you will always remember where you were when you were watching it. You were acutely aware you were watching history being made as you were watching. How many games can you say that about? I'm going to be honest: that's a first for me.

And if you didn't see it live, I am sorry, but TiVo or a tape-recording or even an ESPN Classic replay is not going to capture it. I'm not being a snob or a prick; this was that surreal to watch live. If you were unlucky enough to miss it, well...I really don't know what to tell you.

You missed out on the greatest basketball performance I have ever seen in my life.

Read the Rest After the Jump...