Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Live Blog: Cavs vs. Pistons, Eastern Conference Finals, Game 4

LeBron's Game 3 performance was so good, it almost makes a live blog of Game 4 mandatory. Hoping for a sequel performance is probably wishful thinking, and hey, as the saying goes, the sequel is never as good as the original. But what about The Mighty Ducks? Those movies just kept getting better and better, and there was three of them. So why not LeBron and LeCavs?

(Of course, this analogy means that the Cavs can only win three of the required four games need to advance...so maybe a terrible analogy. Wouldn't be the first time.)

Regardless, Cleveland needs to win tonight to make anything before June 7 remotely watchable. That's a tall task. Plus, Larry Hughes is out, and he has been giving Chauncey Billups fits (although I think Billups just hasn't tried yet...again, wouldn't be the first time). But that also means Boobie is going to get infinitely more run and we won't have to watch Larry try to dribble to air out of the ball. So maybe it is a watch. We'll see.

The live blog will start at tip off, right around 8:30, maybe a little before. As always, see you after the jump.

LeBron attacks in transition, but misses the runner: doesn't matter; he's in attack mode. This is good to know. Very, very good to know. Still 2-0 early on.
Good sign or bad sign: Larry Hughes is taking a shot or cortizone and gritting this one out. "We'll see what we can get from him." Probably a good thing - Game 4, strangely is more important than Game 5. I know one thing: had I not known this, I don't think I would have been able to tell the difference in his movements.

My computer is struggling a little bit. He's a warrior, though. We're gonna stick him with an IV, have him chug some Gatorade and he'll finish the game out, much like D Will last night. And much like D Will, probably in a losing effort.

The Cavs start the game by forcing the ball into Big Z, he takes 74 dribbles and travels. So standard first possession for the Cavs.

They follow that up with Gooden missing a contested J...two possessions and LeBron hasn't touched it. Thank God Rip is 0-2.

Larry Hughes with a nice turn around! I'll take it!

MisterMarcus said...
Hasn't it only happened once before, the jazz vs. bulls, when they came back from 3 games down in like '97? Or am I mistaken and it's happened more than once?
I have no idea what that stat is, but I know it ain't alot. Which is why Hughes maybe sacrificing Game 5 for Game 4 is completely worth it. I'd rather be down 2-2 and then 3-2 than down 3-1 and then 3-2. If that makes any sense.

Bron throws up an airball from the block. That was as ugly as the step back three was gorgeous. But he's attacked the rim and he's posted up. I love how this game is starting. Can't ask for much more, really. It'd be nice if they'd gone in, but still.

Oh, shit: a closeup of Chauncey Billups reveals that he is sweating. Not a good sign. Shit. He's trying.

Billups backtaps a Rasheed Wallace missed three (his second one in the last two minutes) and the Pistons get a second possession. If the offensive player backtaps the ball, I think the offense gets it back, like, 87% of the time. I have no basis for that argument.

Bronny hits a three. Just thought you should know. Billups answers with one of his own, though. Crap. Larry Hughes is visibly limping. That was a terrible 24 seconds. 11-8, Cavs.

Good God. LeBron beats Prince off the dribble, muscles by Chauncey like he wasn't even there (no small feat mind you) and then takes advantage of Rasheed Wallace getting the fuck out of the way to positively annihilate the rim. Seriously, Sheed learned from last night. He wanted no part of that. Wise man. Cleveland by three.

8 minutes in and Larry hasn't gotten a break. Hey, Mr. Brown? He is taking drugs to play. Think he can get a quick breather?

LeBron with a nice pass to Drew Gooden's Hair Patch. DGHP hammers it. Awesome. DGHP is on fire; he hits another J.

Son of a bitch. Billups pulls up and drills a three. I hate when he is aggressive. Bad things happen. CLE up 19-17 with a little over 2 minutes left.

Prince post up and, shockingly, scores with his left hand. Hey Sasha? That paper in your locker? Its your scouting report. Give it a once over sometime, eh?

Sasha responds with a three. Fair 'nuff, Sasha, fair 'nuff. Oh! Varajea with a gorgeous reverse layup over (under?) Rasheed. And by gorgeous, I mean "horribly awkward." Cavs up 26-21.

Does it surprise anyone else that the Pistons end quarters and halves with Rip Hamilton going 1 on 1 off the dribble? They do it every single time. I know he's gotten better at it, but your telling me Billups isn't more effective there? Maybe kicking it to Rip?

Cavs up 4 at the end of one.

Sheed starts things off with a turn around and then Chauncey nails another three. This ain't good. The Cavs need someone on Detroit to play crappy. At least one someone. No one on Detroit is going along with that plan, though.

Wow. A walk on King James in Cleveland. LBJ really doesn't get the super star call quite yet. Wonder why.

Hey! Mike Brown! Get Damon Jones the hell out of the game when Chauncey is in. It is the most unfair matchup in all of sports. I am dead serious. Chauncey scores every single time. That is terrible, terrible coaching. 100% Mike Brown's fault. Don't even blame Damon, he can't help it Billups completely own him. I'm sure he knows he has no chance.

Boobie gets to the rim and gets fouled. It really is jarring watching a Cavs game and seeing someone get to the rim.

Man, LeBron is pissed off. Maxiell (man, he can get up) gets away with a goal tend (well, maybe he got it) and an LBJ runner. That's two close calls, neither one going to LeBron. Just sayin'.

Boobie oops LBJ in transition...the lob was a little low; LeBron caught it at rim level with one hand, brought it up a half-foot above the rim to his other hand and then crushed it. Boobie to LBJ...has a beautiful ring to it, no?

Damon Jones is still in and Chauncey Billups is still killing him. Of course he is. If Dan Gilbert walked over and fired Mike Brown right now, I would be fine with it and honestly, Mike Brown probably wouldn't even be surprised. Aaaaaand Damon Jones just missed a three, which is the only reason he's in there in the first place. Get him the hell out!

Oh, Daniel Gibson. Penetrates, splits a double team, then hits a one-legged Billups-esque step back. Collins put it best: That was a confident move. damn right it was.

Gibson follows that up by sticking a jumper, getting fouled, and then relentlessly pounding his chest. I am loving the Boobie Gibson era. Cavs up, 37-30.

I can't believe the amount of time Larry Hughes is getting. There is no way in hell he plays in Game 5. With Gibson playing this well, there really is no need to play him, especially considering that Billups is on fire, anyways. Honestly, why is he out there?

Marv Albert says "Boobie" three times in a row. Terrific, just terrific. He then informs us that Mike Brown refuses to call him Boobie, but when Marv texts Boobie, he does not call him DGib, as Doug Collins would like, but does indeed call him Boobie. Of course he does. It was really much more riveting live. Marv Albert saying Boobie. He really did.

Cavs up 10 because Boobie is shredding the Pistons right now. He scores 9 straight on jumpers and drives and foul shots. Z gets a putback and pushes it to 10, 43-33. This is all with LeBron out, mind you. I can't believe the Cavs have a point guard that is playing like this. Let's hope Boobie can keep up his Daron Williams impersonation.

The Cavs ended the second half well, getting up by as much as 12, but Lindsay Hunter hit a stupid 3 and somehow the lead was only 7 at the break. Good, coulda been been better.

Now comes the third quarter. Gulp. This is where the Pistons have owned the Cavs the last three games. Don't expect to read the name "LeBron" alot over the next 12 minutes. I hope you do, but don't get your hopes up.

Rip starts the third by missing a bad three. You know, he just may be the Random Piston Who Ends Up Sucking tonight. Fingers crossed, anyways.

Of course he hits a degree-of-difficulty-8.5 jumper on the very next possession. CLE lead cut to 5.

A Billups step back cuts the lead to three. Man, for whatever reason, some teams just can't play in the third quarter. Cleveland is one of them. You know what the remedy is? More Boobie. Always is, my friend, always is.

Wanna hear a secret? Ms. 23 saw the commercial for the Fantastic 4 car and thought that flying cars now existed and could be bought at your local dealership. Direct quote: "This is huge!" Just thought you should know.

(Note: I don't know if I've mentioned this before, but I hate when Simmons or someone references their significant other. Well, actually just Simmons; he takes it to an unnecessary level. So I try not to do that. But that just had to be mentioned and Ms. 23 was the best I could come up with. OK, back to the game.)

Detroit is within one, mainly because they are trying harder than Cleveland. Hamilton drills a J to take the lead. Listen, Rip, forget I said anything. Really, never mind. My bad, man, my bad.

I don't get why Cleveland's offense will just stand there sometimes. No one moves. I mean, its a choice, isn't it? Doesn't Mike Brown have a billion plays? Why not run one of 20 of them? I can't believe there is over 6 minutes left and this game is tied. What the hell.

Boobie drills a three from the corner. I am starting a Facebook group next commercial: I Heart Boobie. Have I mentioned yet that I love him?

Sheed gets called for a travel and flashes his yellow teeth in disapproval. Jack from the Lost season finale is jealous of his beard, too.

Oh, Weber hits Boobie unnecessarily hard and gets hit with a flagrant. Make that a T. He kinda threw him down, I dunno. Looked worse live. Either way, Boobie nails three straight feebies to push the lead out to 6. The crowd is into it a little bit, too. Thanks, C Web, 'preciate it!

Freakin Rip Hamilton.

Detroit is getting every big rebound. They are killing the Cavs on the offensive glass. They get two more possessions, and Boobie picks up his third "and 1" foul. Through no one's fault but Cleveland's, the Pistons are up 2.

LBJ: 0-4 so far. Least he's shooting. I guess. Guess who fouled him? Damon freakin Jones. Are we positive there is actually glass in Mike Brown's eyewear? Sure he didn't tip a plastic nose and mustache off them right before tipoff?

Cavs down 2 after 3.

Mike Brown wakes Donyell Marshall up from his nap and inserts him into the game. Thoughtful.

Varejao gets whistled for a quick foul, off the ball. The refs have been getting hammered for not being able to discern between flops and actual fouls and they are taking it on on Varejao.

There is just under 3 minutes left and the Cavs have scored 8 points. Needless to say, I have my Donyell face on right now.

LeBron misses the same back three he drilled two nights ago. LeBron is still 0-for-the-quarter. Can we just skip the third quarter somehow? Just play the second quarter twice or something? Please?

Boobie is killin' it. I can't stress this enough. He nails a floater with 10 seconds left around 3 Pistons.

Chauncey answers by driving and getting fouled with 2 seconds left. Guess who he was fouled by? None other than Damon Jones! I know, I am just as stunned as you are. Are we entirely sure that Mike Brown has actual glass in his eyewear? He didn'r rip off a plastic nose and mustache right before tip off?

Cavs down 2 after 3.

Bron nails a contested J with a toe on the line over two guys, fading away. Can we brainwash him into thinking there is no third quarter?

The Pistons are supremely confident they can win this series, I know. But they have to be legitemately scare of LeBron in the fourth quarter of a close game, right? Or are they that confident?

Beautiful pas from LeBron. Drives right, wraps it behind his back to Sleepy Marshall. Sleepy misses the and 1 free throw. Still, tied at 69. (If there are any ninth graders reading this, you can giggle now. Go right ahead.)

Why do Damon Jones and Sleepy Marshall have to play at the same time? One three point shooter isn't enough? Those two can't guard a soul. This is so stupid.

James drills a one-dribble pull up over Prince.

McDyess is killing Donyell Marshall. Cripes. Detroit up 3.

Hey, have you seen Drew Gooden around? Anywhere? Yea, me either. Weird. Wonder where he went?

That is crazy: as soon as I typed that, he lassos Rasheed Wallace and gets hit with a technical. Hey, thanks for stopping by Drew. You've been a big help.

What a move by LeBron. It looked kinda like MJ fakin out John Starts and then dunking on Ewing, cept it was from the wing and he laid it in. Lost the headband and got a foul, too. He actually finishes off the three-point play to boot. He did look oddly naked without that head band on, though.

LeBron just dribbled for the entire 24 second shot clock, somehow geta all the way to the charge circle and draws a foul. He knocks down both to pull Cleveland to within 1. Chauncey misses a bad three and Bron Bron feeds Gooden for a baseline J. I swear as soon as I rip someone, they do something great. So: watch this.

LeBron Sucks. LeBron Sucks. LeBron Sucks.

There, that should do the trick.

Sasha gets out ahead of the pack and lays one in, Cleveland takes the lead. Good God, I am nervous.

I think those two guys from the Sonic commercials should be the next commercial duo to get their own sitcom after the Cavemen (which I am positively ecstatic for).

Rasheed picked up a tech for throwing his headband during the commercial break and now refuses to put it back on. Boobie knocks down the free throw to push it to 4.

In response to the T, Rasheed wisely throws up a terrible three, which he airballs. Student of the game, Rasheed Wallace.

Goode nails back to back baseline Js. Lead out to six, and then Bron pushes it to 8 with an ungauradable step back from the top of the key. The Pistons have to be scared now, right? A little?

Three minutes left and the Pistons go zone. Its works, too: LeBron misses a bad three.

At the othe end, Billups drives, there is contact (actually, Boobie gets Billups' nuts right in his face), all three refs stare at each other for a second that lasted at least 15 minutes and then they call the charge on Mr Big Shot. The Q approves. (Boobie with another huge play. He's awesome.)

This zone is scaring the hell out of me. It just invited the Cavs to stand around and, wouldn't you know it, that is just what the Cavs love to do.

LeBron guarding Chauncey. INteresting. Rip brings the Pistons within 4.Boobie with a turnover, somehow the Cavs get it right back and Boobie promptly turns it right back over. Alrights, Boob, that play is over with. Don't let it rattle ya. Next play, homie, next play.

87-83. 1:30 left. Pistons ball. Huge, huge series. A cold Eric Snow checks in...he forces Prince to give it up to Billups, LeBron with a terrific close out and then Billups throws it away to Gooden. Hughes wasn't even on the court, Chauncey. What gives? Gooden hits 1 of 2. Cavs up 5.

Make that three. Rip elevates over Boobie like he isn't even there. 88-85, Cavs. 1:02 left. My hands are shaking. Leo DiCaprio in "The Departed," I am not.

This might not be the best time to bring this up, but the JumboTron is demanding that all fans do The Twirly Bird. What the hell is The Twirly Bird?

Detroit doubles LeBron at the top of the key and force him to give it up to Gooden, who gets the hell blocked out of him by Rasheed, leading to....Chauncey Billups taking a terrible, off balance, contested three in transition. Cavs clear it. 37 seconds left. TO, Cavs. Can LeBron do ittwo games in a row....no, he misses a bad three, but Detroit can't get the board, there is a scramble at midcourt and somehow Eric Snow is fouled...excpet he is cold as hell and shouldn't even be in. Of course he misses the first. He isn't even sweating. Gotta have the second to push it to 4....yes!

I swear LeBron just tipped it in for the Pistons. I swear it was him. 4.0 seconds left, Pistons foul LeBron....this is it, King James...gotta have 'em....makes the first!...and the second...yes! Unreal. Two games in a row LeBron steps up and pushed a lead from 2 to 4 when it really matters. We are watching this young man grow up! Sob. Don't cry, don't cry!

Sheed misses a three and that is it, kiddies. LeBron and Boobie just saved the playoffs. Well, at least the conference finals. Man...2-2 going back to Detroit, LeBron playing in attack mode, Boobie playing out of his mind...can't ask for much more than that, can you? I will definitely be live blogging that game in Thursday. See you then.

6 comments so far. Might as well add your own.:

MisterMarcus said...

Hasn't it only happened once before, the jazz vs. bulls, when they came back from 3 games down in like '97? Or am I mistaken and it's happened more than once?

MisterMarcus said...

errr sorry about that pic :S

matt said...

Nice work here, man.

Do you sometimes get the feeling that only McDyess realizes Detroit is playing this series and it's not just practice or something?

Keep it up-

point 23 said...

I was actually stunned by how much McDyess shot tonight...he was playing noticeably harder.

And not just sometimes, ALL THE TIME. That's the thing with the Pistons: they play down to their competition. They shoulda swept the Bulls in the last round, but they screwed around. Eventually, that catches up with you. And I hope that happens on Thursday night.

Thanks for the props and the comment.

3bsaver said...

The game was great, but is there anyway someone can get the reporters to stop asking stupid questions to the team who just lost. I mean really they just lost, the series is tied, and you ask the teammates of Wallace, if they can rely on him to help out in the rest of the games….what do they think they were going to say?? No he sucks, and I don’t want to play with him anymore… There’s always a chance that will happen but I doubt it, at least not until the playoffs are over. Sorry but some reporters Suck at their job!

And Wallace throwing his jersey and it landing on that guy’s head, that was just priceless..

The Scrapper said...

What a shot by Lebron, wow.