Worth a scare, but not quite there

What on earth does it take for the Hawks to beat the Cavs? To be on equal footing as the Cavs? Can it be done as is, or are there changes that have to be made? Are the changes something in execution, gameplan, player personnel, or what?

It’s not that the Hawks played a bad game. We’ve certainly seen worse from them, and the level of effort was greater than it was against Orlando earlier this year, or the L.A. Lakers. Is effort even the problem? Maybe it’s just part of the problem. How much of a part, is the question. After watching the Hawks hang in there until the very end (and even the last minute or so showed that it wasn’t quite over….well, until Iggy hit that 3, that is), only to lose a heartbreaker, I’m not sure we can pinpoint any one thing here. But, we can run down the list, no? And, we can see how many things, if any, are related.

Let’s start with what is perhaps the most popular one. The Cavs are bigger. Okay, we knew that already. They had dominated the boards against us with 43 total rebounds, while we had 30. Automatically, you want to revert to the idea that they are bigger. Yet not a single Cavalier player had as many rebounds as Al Horford. Shaq had 8, Ilgauskas had 5, Varejao had 8,  Lebron had 8, and Delonte West had 5 . Do you count Lebron and Delonte? Given their production in that category, you have to. So basically, the Cavs had five guys who made rather meaninful contributions in the rebounding category. Now for the  the Atlanta counterparts. As mentioned before, Horford had 9 rebounds. Josh Smith added 8. After that, things fall off considerably. Crawford had 4, while Bibby and Pachulia had 3 apice. Okay, you say, that’s only a difference of 8 rebounds. Well, that can be a lot, especially if they are offensive rebounds. And guess what? The Cavs had 10 offensive rebounds. The Hawks? Just five. Now before you begin to lambast the Hawks front line, take a look at a deeper issue here.

The Cavs played four guys in the frontcourt rotation, and that, my friends, is WITHOUT including Lebron James. Shaq had 25 minutes, Ilgauskas 20, Varejao 33, and Hickson 16. Add Lebron to the mix, and you have 5 frontcourt guys playing, though it could be argued that Lebfon is both frontcourt and backcourt. Conversely, the Hawks played Josh Smith 30 minutes, Horford for 40, Marvin 30, Zaza 18, and Joe Smith for 5. But considering that Marvin only contributed only a single rebound, it’s hard to count him. And again, of the Hawks’ significant rebound contributors, two are backcourt-only players (Crawford and Bibby). Look again, and you see that Jamal Crawford had the most minutes off the bench by far with 34. Did the Hawks think to win the battle on the glass by playing backcourt players more than frontcourt players?

So, did the Cavs beat the Hawks because they are bigger? Did they outrebound the Hawks because they are bigger? Or did they play more guys who are regular rebound contributors, while the Hawks played fewer guys who can regularly be counted on to provide rebounds? Why would you counter a bigger lineup with more minutes for smaller guys (like Jamal Crawford and Mo Evans)? This leads us to another thought:

The Cavs are bigger. What, is there an echo in here? No, but there may as well be. Again, we knew this already. So why counter an opposing bigger lineup with a smaller one, then play to the opponent’s strengths? This certainly appears to be what happened tonight, as the Hawks insisted on running half court sets most of the night against the bigger Cavaliers. What’s scary is that it almost worked. Well, that is until the Hawks returned to an old bad habit, but I’m getting ahead of myself here. Seriously, why counter with smaller guys if you aren’t going to take advantage of your speed? The Hawks didn’t run much, and it’s plain to see that running doesn’t work so well if you’re not rebounding well  (a point that Astro Joe had to make plain for me one day when I was wailing about the Hawks not running). Perhaps simply countering with smaller guys is not the answer. Either the guys you have on the floor are good rebounders, or they can find a way to outwork their bigger opponents for rebounds….or, you have to add another rebounder to the lineup, and take away a shooter/scorer. Fact is, the Hawks have a whole stable of guys who can get down the court. And after watching Zaza Pachulia beat the Cavs down the floor to receive a hail mary pass (that ended in a dunk), it’s hard to say that it’s not possible. So what is the best way to counter a bigger lineup? Playing half court offense with a bigger team is clearly not the answer. Because it only leads to one eventuality, which is the next thought.

Whenever the Hawks find themselves outclassed our outmuscled in a half court contest, they resort to the usual: ISO plays. ISO-Jamal worked more often than it didn’t, but it wasn’t enough (Crawford missed 7 shots, while making 10). ISO-JJ barely worked a third of the time. Part of that was due to JJ getting double teamed a lot. But the double team is nothing new, is it? What’s also not new is JJ’s seeming reluctance to pass out of it. For that reason alone, it makes sense as to why teams instantly try to double Joe, besides the fact that he is the team’s leading scorer. ISO plays are live-and-die plays. The Hawks have to figure out when to use them, and who to run them through. In the meantime, what’s wrong with running the pick-and-roll against a team that struggles to defend it from the post position?

The Hawks also shot themselves in the foot by missing ten of their 26 free throws. None was worse than Josh Smith, who went 1-6 from the line. Surprisingly, Jamal Crawford hit just 2 of his 4 attempts. Still, even if the Hawks hit all but 2 of their free throws, they still lose.

Lastly, there is defense. Much is made about the Hawks interior defense, but next to nothing is mentioned on the perimeter. First, let’s start with a highlight. Say what you will, but Marvin Williams and Joe Johnson gave Lebron James all he could handle and then some. “The King” was harrassed into 6 for 20 shooting, and a very uncharacteristic 14 points. Unfortunately, he is as much playmaker as he is scorer, and recorded 10 assists by passing out of double teams and other bad situations (ahem…somebody should be taking notes) to cutting teammates (ahem again…some other somebodys should be taking notes, including the ones with clipboards in their hands). Marvin did his job in that respect, and there is no denying it (or so you’d think, but…ah, nevermind). So did Joe. However, Delonte West and Mo Williams did some serious damage from the outside and occasionally on backdoor cuts (like when Ilgauskas and Lebron were drawing Josh, Marvin, and Al away from the basket). The Hawks have got to defend the perimeter shooters better, or teams are going to blast us from there. No more wide open looks!  

So is that it? Can the Hawks just not beat the Cavs? Are the Cavs just too big, or is it something else? What gameplan and in-game adjustments can be made to counter the Cavaliers? Is it going to come down to roster moves? Perhaps playing Joe Smith more when Josh Smith is in foul trouble (and Marvin is not producing on the boards) is an idea. Perhaps not. What do you think? One thing is for sure. It’s much harder to win at Quicken Loans arena….

192 comments Add your comment

doc

December 29th, 2009
11:46 pm

another so soon … first?

doc

December 29th, 2009
11:58 pm

because joe johnson and mike bibby didnt show up on the offensive end. someone warned me about the pretzels and i went ahead and bought one for an increase of 50 cents this tear over last to make it 5 dollars for a silly pretzel. what i found out is that they took about 50% of the total volume out of it along with raise the price and then over cook it. jj’s game kind of reminded me of this, he isnt top dollar and he doesnt deliver in the crunch but shrinks to the scale of the game about every frigging time. i will just call him “pretzel joe” and let him wipe the dough off his face over time. durn just when you think he is going to blow up like a big dough ball with yeast in it he goes flat in the frigging oven. games like this suggest he is not worth more than 14 mil a year if we are seriously going to become a championship caliber team, further, wouldnt it have been nice if he had said, “you know i didnt deliver tonight on the offensive end and if i did especially in the fourth quarter, which woody makes mine, we win”. nope wont come from jj.

FRESH

December 30th, 2009
12:21 am

Mannnnn right now the Hawks (Hell all Atlanta sport team for that matter) just feel like a very bad marriage. Some days things are cool then next thing you know S**t goese south quick!!!! And I MEAN QUICK!!! S**t even gets downright ugly from time to time SMH.

I don’t know how much more of this marriage I can take, I know I can do better…luckily I signed the prenuptial agreement.

coach g

December 30th, 2009
12:45 am

Yes, Cavs can keep a bigger center in the game, but Hawks are bigger at some other positions in the depth chart but didn’t take advantage. I see two other clear Cavs advantages this year, (and there are a few more I might share after we whup the Hawks a-gain this evening) 1. HAWKS ARE SOFT. 2. CAVS HAVE A MUCH HIGHER BASKETBALL IQ which will only get higher and higher as the new CAVS and last years Cavs learn to play together even more. Did you notice the squad that kicked the Hawks kiesters down the stretch was Mo, D-West, Wildthing, Z, and…who am I forgetting? That would be last year’s starting squad that won 66 and swept the Hawks.

Hawks were just lucky Coach Brown is senselessly rotting out Boobie Gibson right now as a hot shooter would have burned Hotlanta to the ground the way you play d…

Ed

December 30th, 2009
12:58 am

Rookie killa Woodrow once again doesn’t play Teague. Sund may as well trade him before Woody crushes his confidence as he has done before to others. Even on a night when his starting guards are stinkin’ up the joint he still doesn’t give the kid a chance. I still believe if we have drafted Paul he would have rotted on the bench until we traded / gave him away. I say this knowing that Woody didn’t like him or want to draft him and his greatness would have been put off or never realized.

chuckw/deadjournalist

December 30th, 2009
8:19 am

Eight hours later and I’m still damn-near speechless about what went on last night. The good news is that tonight there is a chance at redemption. Frankly, if the Hawks somehow manage to win tonight in Cleveland, that might speak volume about the team maturation – the ability to shake of the worst (maybe second worst after that Charlotte game) of the season and rebound with a huge road win.

But if they don’t …

I know this is going to sound like I’m being a reactive, bandwagon-jumper, but last night game underscored why Joe Johnson is an all-star, but not a super-star. Folks, it isn’t like this is the first time Joe Johnson as disappeared in big games. This is his SOP; his MO.

In past years – even last year – it was convenient to say that JJ didn’t have any help or that he was the star and the Hawks didn’t have a second scorer that is capable of freeing up JJ. That excuse is no longer valid with Jamal Crawford.

Off the top of my head I can’t think of a single game-winning or game-timing shot JJ has made in the last 15 seconds. I can think of at least five he’s missed. Last year, in crunch-time, I wanted the ball in Flip Murray’s hands for the last shot. This year I want it in Crawford’s hands.

I’m not bashing JJ, despite how it might seen. He’s a good player and he’s been key in what the Hawks have been able to do in the last few years. But he just shown – at least through last night – that he can be “the guy” in big games on a consistent basis.

Last night proved the two points I mentioned yesterday on Big Ray’s last blog. Jason Collins is wasting a roster spot and the rotation needs a hard-nose defender who is quick enough to defend the point.

Back to work, but I sure hope the Hawks show up tonight. It’s a big win they really need – if not so much for them as for their fans.

Sautee

December 30th, 2009
10:12 am

Nice piece, Ray.

I’d sure liked to have seen us attack the rim more.

Astro Joe

December 30th, 2009
10:37 am

It was an uncharateristic night. Our bench was badly out-played. We were careless with the ball (how many fast break opps were blown by making highlight-worthy passes or Mo Evans trying a reverse dunk) and our bigs played small. Why is Josh Smith fouling Varejao on a jump shot? Why did Horford look tentative when Shaq & Z were in the game together?

IMO, the game came down to the fact that Big Z and Delonte out-performed our bench. Oh yeah, and Zaza played some really poor defense and repeatedly made the wrong rotation while in the game (especially in the 2nd quarter).

What’s the under/over when Josh Smith picks up his 2nd foul tonight? I’m predicting around the 5:00 minutes left in the 1st quarter.

Season Ticket Holder

December 30th, 2009
11:11 am

The Hawks were not up for the big game, and although they are professionals and should not need anything/anyone to get them up for a big game – part of the coach(es) job is to get a team mentally prepared… this did not take place last night. Our coaches were out coached. They were unable to make adjustments when their game plan did not work. If your guards are not playing well and you have other guards on the bench, put them in. Teague’s athleticism possibly could have matched up better with Delente West and Mo Williams (Bibby’s age showed last night). And if Teague stunk it up at least you made a change to try to give your team a chance to win (you can always put him back on the bench). On the bench Teague is unable to score a point, get a block, get a steal, play good defense… If Delente West is slamming on Josh Smith the way he did last night, it is not fair to expect Bibby to be able to stay with him.

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
11:55 am

ChuckW ,

Nice post. I wouldn’t mind some version of Lindsey Hunter right about now. Everybody talks about how our starting center fares against those of the Big 3 (and the best of the West), but in truth, it all starts at the pg position. And guess what? Every point guard in the Big 3 gives us the business (Rondo, Nelson, Williams). We asked for more size and ability at the backup spot to the 4 and 5, and we got it, but we aren’t using it.

You and others ( Astro Joe among them) were asking for a good pass-first/defensive minded pg before the season began. Now’s the time…..

Astro Joe ,

Zaza was definitely messing up. He keeps holding the ball too low, be it on drives, rebounds, whatever. Someone always pokes it away. Hell, even Shaq ripped him one time, which surprised the heck out of me. He did rotate wrong a lot on defense, but had some good defensive moments as well (the block on Ilguaskas comes to mind).

Our bench got outplayed, but they also didn’t play much. Crawford got starter’s minutes and Zaza was out there for 18 ticks, but Mo Evans got 11 minutes and Joe Smith got 5. That’s the part that bugs me. Why just 5 minutes for Smith? He can stretch the defense with his jumper, and fights for rebounds, knows how to defend and rotate properly.

Whoever was supposed to be defending Delonte just didn’t do it. He got loose when he wanted to. Missed rotations is all I can think of. That dunk against Smith was an example of a quick guy coming off a defensive switch and getting beat to the basket because either he didn’t switch fast enough, or the guy who was guarding him to begin with simply lost him.

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
11:59 am

I’m not sure what to say about Joe Johnson. I think I’ll wait and see what happens tonight, before I spout off.

Jay

December 30th, 2009
1:22 pm

Big Ray,

Seems to me that Joe Johnson is a gifted player but he doesn’t always rise to the occasion. Seems to be a cross between Shareef Abdur-Rahim (a nice guy who puts up good numbers but doesn’t make the difference between winning and losing) and Scottie Pippen (a talented player who is not a true leader). A guy who is better suited to be a number 2 option instead of the number 1, go-to guy.

It also seems to me that, like Royal Ivey did when he was a Hawk, Jeff Teague should start the first and third quarters with the instructions that focus on defense. In fact, moving Bibby to the second unit could make the entire team better. Bibby, Crawford, Evans, Smith and Pachulia/Collins would comprise a veteran bench–a half-court group with four scorers that Woodson shouldn’t be afraid to use. Adding Teague to the first unit not only gives them the on-the-ball defensive quickness they need but should give them a quickness advantage against all of their opponents, create more of an offensive role for Marvin Williams (who often seems lost or unsure of his role) and better overall team balance.

I understand why some complain about it but the reality is that everyone should stop calling for an end to ISO-Joe and/or ISO-Jamal because Coach Woodson not only allows it, he embraces it. To stop the ISOs, he would call set plays for the team to execute, or even call time-outs if he didn’t condone them. Let’s face it–for all the changes and upgrades to the roster, this is still a team that lives and dies by the jump-shot. The only way ISOs will stop is when Josh and/or Al develop an unstoppable low post move.

Last thought for today–beating Cleveland and Orlando seems to be more of a mental hurdle that must be overcome than talent shortcomings or coaching questions–similar to the issues they went throught against Boston last year. Whether they overcome those issues this year remains to be seen but it is a step they must take if they want to win a championship.

Astro Joe

December 30th, 2009
2:26 pm

I think Joe simply doesn’t have the physical tools to “step up big” against elite defenses. He doesn’t possess the athletic abilities of elite scorers and he doesn;t operate in an offense that allowed shooters like Ray Allen and Reggie Miller to excel in their prime. But as I have said ad nauseum, we are an ensemble cast for 70+ games. So it is unfair to ask a guy who averages 20-21 points to suddenly score 30+ against the defensive elite (who are focused on him). What we need is for the ensemble to step up as a unit, not just one guy. Crawford has likely never had an entire defense designed to stop him… he was never on a team that truly threatened an elite team. So I don’t know if he could do much better as the “lead dog”.

Delonte did most of his damage against Crawford and Joe (offensively). As I recall, Bibby didn’t enter the 4th quarter until around 3-4 minutes left in the game and the damage had already been done. I recall because I kept thinking “if the offense is stalled, why not put in the team’s best facilitator”. But again, that didn’t happen until the game was essentially done. And when he entered, he came in for Marvin who had played a tremendous defensive game.

Astro Joe

December 30th, 2009
2:31 pm

The other way to stop ISO-SG is for Josh to stop commiting bone-headed fouls (like fouling Varejao on a 20 foot jumper). If Smith is the team’s MVP (and I could buy that arguement this season), then he MUST stay out of foul trouble. It’s one thing to pick up fouls defending the lane, but in the past 5+ games, he is picking up dumb fouls on the perimeter or offesnively. If Joe gets the blame for not stepping up offensively, then Smith needs to get his share of criticism for not being the defensive anchor. With an ensemble cast, the blame (much like the credit) needs to go around.

Marvin=Bust of the decade

December 30th, 2009
3:49 pm

Why did we re-sign Marvin again? I understand we got him at a relatively good rate. But the guy is getting progressively worse and provides absolutely nothing to the offense. It seems as though Woodson is unable to change the status quo and let Crawford start and give Marvin minutes off the bench.

Otherwise, I think we should look to trade Marvin at the deadline for a guy like Mike Miller or Shane Battier. Can you imagine this team with at least a slightly above average sf? People seem to be missing the fact that this team has improved despite a small forward who at age 23 has gotten worse than he was at age 21. What a truly awful pick and now most likely Sund’s big mistake thus far in resigning him. We would have been better off giving those years and money to Charlie Villanueva. Or offering those years to Childress along with Marvin’s starting job.

Thoughts?

chuckw/deadjournalist

December 30th, 2009
4:26 pm

now that we’re about three hours from tonight’s game, i’m cautiously optimistic that the hawks will answer the bell for tonight’s game.

astro joe – you are dead-right on josh smith. the cat has to keep his head in the game. he’s grown up a lot – but he’s got to get over the final hump. last night, when he tossed his headband after not getting a foul call, i was certain he was going to get tossed. i guess the refs either missed it or through the was throwing off the court because it was falling off. but with my eyes i saw malice.

i’ll take your point about josh smith a step further. the hawks are at their best when they ball goes through josh and al’s hands. the more he stays involved on offense the more his defense intensifies. it also prevents the dreaded ISO-JOE offense from rearing its ugly head.

i also thought it was interesting, watching the game on tv, that ‘nique shied away from the criticism that rathman gave on the hawks performance. i know he’s a vp, but there really was no way to justify that mystifying fourth quarter.

Melvin

December 30th, 2009
4:32 pm

Melvin

December 29th, 2009
9:57 pm
We have two problems when we play Cleveland.
1. We are undersized (but we did play them well enough to win).
2. We can’t hide Bibby on defense against this team. He can’t guard D.West or Mo Williams. Forget about Parker b/c D.West is the finisher for them…

chuckw/deadjournalist

December 30th, 2009
4:33 pm

marvin=bust –

i don’t think marvin played too poorly yesterday, as a matter of fact, he played pretty solid defense again lebron. but your point is a valid one. i think the needs of the team go beyond a replacement SF though.

with his age and contract, he wouldn’t be difficult to move for a solid player. i don’t think this is the time to make such a move, however.

Astro Joe

December 30th, 2009
4:44 pm

NO team gets a boat-load of offense from each of the five starters. JJ Hickson does what for the Cavs? How about Kendrick Perkins in Boston? Orlando relies on Pietrus to defend, not score. I would bring up the names of George McGinnis and Marc Iavaroni, but most are too young to remember their playing days. But suffice it to say that McGinnis was a reknown scorer who started with 4 other big-time scorers for Philly (including Julius). But the 76ers didn’t win until Marc Iavoroni (whose single focus was defense and rebounding) became a starter.

Sometimes we lose because the other team is better.

Melvin

December 30th, 2009
4:49 pm

Astro Joe,
About this statement:

“But as I have said ad nauseum, we are an ensemble cast for 70+ games. So it is unfair to ask a guy who averages 20-21 points to suddenly
score 30+ against the defensive elite (who are focused on him).”

Considering your statement, will it be fair for Joe to ask the Hawks for a max contract like the big boys and can’t deliver like the big boys during big games???

MannyT

December 30th, 2009
4:58 pm

I know folks don’t want to hear it, but Marvin needs to become Marc Ivaroni (or Bruce Bowen or Shane Battier) i.e. defense and intagibles first, offense second.

I’d be surprised if the offense had a long power outage again tonight. Hoping for the best.

I agree that we have some front court kinks to work out over the long term. We do need to share more of the frontcourt load. It cannot be almost all Al & Josh all the time.

BWAF

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
5:18 pm

Good analysis on Josh Smith by ChuckW and Astro Joe . I couldn’t agree more.

Marvin=Bust of the Decade ,

I won’t argue too much with your name, as it would spark a whole different debate. :)

I’ll say this though: Sund signed Marvin to a very reasonable contract, definitely one we wouldn’t be complaining about if Marvin was more involved in the offense and still getting about 14 and 6 per game. I think it was a good move. Now use your imagination for a second. What if Sund explored the idea of trading him, and just couldn’t find a deal that would make this team better ? You can trade for a guy who gets better stats. But if he doesn’t fit better or make the team better, then is it a good trade?

I’m not saying Marvin is a keeper for all eternity. Perhaps the right opportunity has yet to come to us. At the same time, he fits. As in, he’s not throwing the team’s chemistry out of whack.

Jay ,

Very good insight.

You may be right about Joe Johnson. I think if that philosophy were dead wrong, we’d have seen it by now. As to Horford or Smith developing an unstoppable low post move, I don’t think that will ever happen. Nor do I think it’s absolutely necessary. In fact, despite some of the great post players I’ve seen, I don’t recall any particular unstoppable post moves.

Shaq used to get position on the block and just dunk or lay it in. But that wasn’t an unstoppable move, that was a guy who was bigger and stronger than anybody else. The last time I recall a guy who had such a move, it was a fellow by the name of Hakeem Olajuwon. The “Dream Shake” was about as unstoppable as it got.

I think what we need is for Josh and Al to get more consistent touches, specifically moreso in ways that they can take advantage. Without the touches, you can’t develop anything, not a move, not rhythm, nothing. As far as the ISOs go, you’re right. As they go, we go. Even though Woody embraces that, is that the path to progressive success? Do we keep that path, even if it never gets us farther than where we got last time? Tough questions, and it’s a good thing WE don’t have to answer them, eh? :)

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
5:21 pm

LOL.

Astro Joe and MannyT have locked onto the “Marc Iavaroni” concept at the same time.

Joe Mama

December 30th, 2009
5:38 pm

Not quite there? hahahaha LMAO!

This team is a run and gun team with no ability to play a half court set because we have no low post game.

The game is won are lost in the paint.

Look for the hawks to get pushed around in the paint with there bigs not allowing the ball to hit the floor on rebounds by keeping the ball above the rim, where we have no chance.

Adjustments? hahahhahaha LMAO what M-F adjustment can you make? Our best big is already getting a double dose of Z and Shaq who are averaging a well rested 25 minutes a game. What the hell you gonna do? Take this Azz whopping and try to find better personnel in the post before the season’s deadline.

Joe Mama

December 30th, 2009
5:38 pm

*won or lost

Joe Mama

December 30th, 2009
5:41 pm

Ed thats a good point. Teague would have had a definite impact on the outcome of the game. You are a real thinker!

doc

December 30th, 2009
6:46 pm

lets see if pretzel jj can blow up or be small tonight.

niremetal

December 30th, 2009
7:11 pm

God, I always forget how annoying the Cavs’ announcers are…

niremetal

December 30th, 2009
7:41 pm

WHOA! Jason Collins in the first quarter! I like Collins against Shaq much better than Collins against Z. Z can spread the floor, and Collins isn’t exactly an inside-out defender.

But hey…it’s an adjustment. I think.

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
7:59 pm

Whoooeeee! I love what the Hawks are doing right now!

Ball movement, good decisions, and the strategic use of Jason Collins and Joe Smith, which has proven INVALUABLE.

The Hawks look good out there, and it looks like Woody has embraced the idea of actually adjusting!

We’re even overcoming the usual bogus calls and non-calls…

vava74

December 30th, 2009
8:05 pm

the refs will continue to pound us and if we hit a dry spell, the Cavs will continue to score on the line…

doc

December 30th, 2009
8:13 pm

got things going, let us see if it can continue after the half. need four quarters of intense play. jj needs to keep it going as well the whole game, no disappearance act tonight in the last half.

wow, there is advertising space on collins body.

vava74

December 30th, 2009
8:22 pm

yeah doc, it says: “we make your Shaq disappear”

chuckw/deadjournalist

December 30th, 2009
8:22 pm

let’s hope the 2nd half makes the whole …

vava74

December 30th, 2009
8:26 pm

I would definitively continue to keep Collins against Shaq but I would put Al against Ziggy.

doc

December 30th, 2009
8:35 pm

man do the refs ever try to give it to the cavs and lebrons running over josh twice now. just now they sandwich him and complain and yell no way. careful guys tough stretch here.

doc

December 30th, 2009
8:38 pm

yup just as i thought back to an 8 pt game, refs in charge now. soft fouls called while we have the ball to get us out of flow no calls on the other end are hardly make ups. man stern has a long rule, saw some of it last night, too. kobe doesnt get this much kid glove treatment.

vava74

December 30th, 2009
8:46 pm

f*cking refs! yes we made mistakes but the refs are THE FACTOR

vava74

December 30th, 2009
8:50 pm

yes, shot off the pick! that is the way to do it

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
8:50 pm

Yikes….nice shot by Joe. Right about now, I’d rather him shoot than pass. His passing has been a bit spotty tonight.

Meanwhile the Lebron calls have continued….we just have to weather the storm.

doc

December 30th, 2009
8:50 pm

nice run guys, settle the crowd down, got to build a lead the refs cant touch.

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
8:53 pm

I think we can affirm that JJ has shown up tonight.

vava74

December 30th, 2009
8:56 pm

damn… that Bibby’s trey would have been the clincher… and the Lebroad hit his trey… damn!

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
9:00 pm

You have GOT to be kidding me. THAT is an offensive foul on Marvin? Then how come it’s not for….oh, nevermind…

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
9:02 pm

LOL@Vava74….”Lebroad”…..priceless!

vava74

December 30th, 2009
9:03 pm

great game by the refs… they deserve the game ball

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
9:06 pm

We are going to lose this game. We’ve gone right into ISO mode, predictably. All the Cavs had to do was wait. ISO Jamal, ISO Joe.

Lucky break on the foul call.

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
9:10 pm

OBVIOUSLY, Joe is tired, and the Cavs are baiting him into driving into the double team.

Meanwhile, Lebron TRAVELS his way to the free throw line. Priceless.

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
9:13 pm

WOODY!!! Get Joe OUT OF THERE, he is breathing with his mouth wide open, and doesn’t have enough strength to make ANY shot! What is WRONG with you?!

Big Ray

December 30th, 2009
9:20 pm

And STILL Woody calls “ISO Joe”, with Joe’s legs CLEARLY gone. And for WHAT? He’s even making Joe guard Lebron at times. AAAAAAAGGGGGHHHH!!!!