By Jason Wojciechowski on November 19, 2009 at 6:50 PM
I almost forgot about yesterday's box scores! Luckily, I won't be distracted by tonight's TNT games until we're already an hour into the Phoenix one. I've decided that instead of canceling my DVR recording of Community and Parks and Recreation every week, I'll just skip the first hour of basketball. It's not like I'd be watching very closely anyway. (There are two tuners in the DVR, of course, but the other one is for Flash Forward.)
Heat 90, Hawks 105: Miami might be showing its true colors: it's recently lost to the Thunder, beat New Jersey by just one, and won against Washington by only four. Now a 15-point loss to the Hawks? Their 7-4 record suddenly seems like it's a little better than they'll end up. The Hawks, by contrast, have been whooping up on people, beating Denver by 25 and winning in Boston before destroying the Hornets. Joe Johnson scored 30, Al Horford had another double-double (16/12) and Josh Smith is just out of this world: 16/14/7/2/2. This is what Andrei Kirilenko was supposed to give us for this decade. Dwyane Wade got stuffed, shooting just 6-18, presumably by Joe Johnson.
Knicks 110, Pacers 103: The Pacers aren't a great team, but they were 5-3 coming into the game, and they have talent, so a road win for the Knicks is pretty solid here. Al Harrington and Larry Hughes did all the damage off the bench, combining for 48 points, with Hughes coming closer to a triple-double than he had any right to: 22/10/7 and three steals. Toney Douglas only played 12 minutes despite starting and Danilo Gallinari, who Migs and I started over Rudy Gay in our fantasy league, was completely useless, with no points and two rebounds in 17 minutes. Danny Granger scored 33 on just 18 shots, hitting five threes, to, uh, pace the Pacers. (That was my one time for the year. I hope it was alright.)
Thunder 94, Magic 108: Revenge game! Nobody dominated the scoring for Orlando, but eight guys scored nine or more points, the efficiency award being won by JJ Redick, who shot 3-4 for his nine, all on threes. Granted that he's a Dukie, I always hoped he'd be a solid spot-up shooter in the league. He was never going to be Ray Allen, but could he be the 2007-08 version of Sasha Vujacic every year, providing excellent shooting, solid ball-handling, and pesky defense? He seems to have worked on his defense, and he's been a good shooter from distance so far (right around 38%), but so far this year, he's at 42%, which is the leap Magic fans have been hoping for. His defense doesn't come out very well, though (107 career defensive rating, no change this year). Anyway, the Thunders' top players got shut down to the point where James Harden had to bail them out with 24 points off the bench (six threes helped him along): Jeff Green (5-13), Kevin Durant (4-12, five turnovers), Nenad Krstic (1-5), and Russell Westbrook (3-11) just got killed.
Hornets 84, Sixers 86: Elton Brand had his best game of the year with 19/11, three steals, and six blocks. Andre Iguodala chimed in with 25 points. Stephen Jackson did his thing: 9-21 shooting for 26/5/5 and three steals. Nobody else took more than eleven shots (that was Flip Murray, who missed six of his seven threes).
Cavs 91, Wizards 108: Well that's just embarrassing. LeBron had 34 and nine assists, but also six turnovers, and on a night when his team got outrebounded 49-35, he grabbed just two boards. Mo Williams and Gilbert Arenas must have been battling for the title of "most missed jumpers by a pseudo point guard" because Mo shot 2-13 and Gil managed a 6-22 night. Gil even shot 1-8 from three, which is the kind of line that just makes me shout "stop shooting them!" I wasn't really watching, so I didn't scream this, but I imagine I might have. Mike Miller took the fourth-most shots on the team despite a 7-11 shooting night. He stands at 60% for the year. Maybe, you know, get him the ball? (He also had eight boards and six assists.)
Warriors 95, Celtics 109: Boston's business was "beat the Warriors by a comfortable margin" and they took care of it. Raja Bell played despite being injured. Monta Ellis shot 8-21. The Warriors, in short, were the Warriors. Boston had Rondo put up 18/7/12 and every member of the starting lineup shoot at least 50%. Like I said: taking care of business.
Nets 85, Bucks 99: The Nets led this one by seven at the half, then got blown out in the third quarter 28-12. Brandon Jennings's line looks awesome at 19 points and eight assists until you realize he also had eight turnovers. Luke Ridnour contributed three assists and two turnovers himself, so the total ball-handling record of the Milwaukee point guards last night was not great. Chris Douglas-Roberts has taken over for the Nets: he went for 31/10 last night, and while he shot just 9-20, he got to the line 14 times.
Rockets 97, Wolves 84: Luis Scola scored inefficiently, with 20 on 21 shots, but he had seven offensive rebounds and sixteen overall. Trevor Ariza took a whopping thirteen threes, so maybe Doc Rivers should come talk to him about his threes the way he talked to Rasheed Wallace. He is shooting 36% on them for the year, though, so it's not like he's bricking them left and right the way Rasheed has been. Anyway, Al Jefferson had 20/10 (exactly) for the Wolves.
Clippers 91, Grizzlies 106: Baron Davis had a shockingly efficient night with 23 points on 13 shots, but he didn't get a ton of help. Rudy Gay rewarded my lack of fantasy faith in him by going for 21/4/3 and three steals. Oops. Hasheem Thabeet played, even though if I had to guess, I'd say his jaw is still broken.
Raptors 91, Jazz 104: Toronto doesn't have any way to win on a night when they shoot 37% because there's just no way they're going to hold the other team under 40%. Marco Belinelli shot 50% for 19 points, and Chris Bosh went off for 32/17, but the rest of the starting lineup shot 12-41, so, you know, speaking of lack of help ... Andrei Kirilenko had 20/7 with three steals and two blocks off the bench for Utah, which he does still do from time to time. Carlos Boozer was presumably the guy who let Bosh go for 32, but he did have 22/18 himself, so that's useful.
Spurs 94, Mavs 99: The Mavs won in overtime on the back of Dirk's 41/12. I think he looked around at his team and realized that Shawn Marion was hurt, Josh Howard was hurt, and Rodrique Beaubois was in the starting lineup, so he just took every single shot himself. He managed 29 shots but zero assists. On the other hand, he also didn't turn the ball over a single time, which is insane, given how often he had the ball. In fact, the Mavs overall had just five turnovers. Remember, they played 53 minutes. The Spurs had a much more normal 18 turnovers, five by Richard Jefferson. Speaking of normal, Tim Duncan had 22/14, although it took him an uncharacteristic 22 shots. By the way, Dirk's 29 shots included just one three. On the one hand, he got to the free throw line 12 times and made 10 of those. On the other hand, this is a guy who's a career 38% three-point shooter, so it's too bad to see him hamstrung.
Pistons 81, Blazers 87: Greg Oden? Four fouls in 24 minutes, but ten rebounds. Ben Gordon and Rodney Stuckey? 4-12 and 6-21. Any other questions?