The Mavericks were at the Staples Center on Sunday, home of the Lakers. Wait, home of the Clippers now right? It’s a bit confusing. LA citizens are blessed with the option to jump on which ever bandwagon is moving the fastest and smoothest at the time. If you watched SNL this weekend you may have saw the skit titled, “The Californians”. If you didn’t see it, check it out here. It’s a classic.That’s what I was reminded of with ever camera shot of the LA crowd during this game.
Speaking of the game…..
It should be noted that the Lakers were without Kobe Bryant. He was still in a suit nursing a shin injury and I can hear the haters now. If we win, “Oh, Lakers didn’t even haveKobe.” If we lose, “Haha, can’t even beat the Lakers withoutKobe. The Mavs are one and done. Blah blah blah” In Kobe’s place was Devin Ebanks. With the Mav’s luck this season I was fully expecting a career night out of the second year player.
1st quarter belonged to the Mavericks guards. Jason Kidd had a quick 8 points and Delonte West was on fire as well with 12. The Dallas double team on Bynum was a success as it limited the big man to only 2 points in the quarter. Pau Gasol was quiet as well. And as usual, Gasol looked like a cave man who hasn’t taken a shower since last July. Mavs led at the end of the quarter 27-22.
Dalla sjumped out to a 10 point lead early in the second quarter. That lead only lasted for a few minutes when Matt Barnes hit a 3 followed by consecutive trips to the free throw line by Gasol. Jason Terry was struggling from the field by the tough defense of……Steve Blake? (Deep breath)…….Sure. Bynum then had an AND1 at one point even though he took about 7 steps. I wasn’t aware that the rules changed since the last game the Mavericks played. Dirk didn’t score his first field goal until there was 2 minutes left in the half. But although Dirk was struggling, Delonte West was shooting 8-11 from the field.
Mavs lead at half time 58-54 and it had all the makings of a heavy weight title bout with the Kobe-less Lakers.
Mavs and Lakers exchanged blows in the second half with 9 lead changes alone in the 3rd quarter. LA was dominating the offensive glass as Ron Artest grabbed some unbelievable rebounds surrounded by Mavs big men. Yes, I still call him Ron Artest. My computer won’t allow me to type his new name. When I try, the lap top starts smoking and threatens to explode due to the severe amount of absurdity. Ramon Sessions started to heat up and Matt Barnes hit a 3 pointer as the Lakers ended the quarter up by one point.
By the way, being the die-hard Mavericks fan that I am; nothing disgusts me more than seeing Matt Barnes hit a big shot against us. Not even a Manu Ginobili Euro step. Speaking of the Spurs, it would be a shame if Pau Gasol didn’t end his career in San Antonio. With the way he cries after every call that goes against him, he’d fit in well with the fighting Papovich’s.
The Mavericks had a 6 point lead with 6:51 to play in the game but couldn’t pull away or get a key stop when they needed it. After an UNREAL bank shot by Dirk with 4 minutes left, Ramon Sessions hit an absolute prayer from 3 with the shot clock expiring (Sessions entered the game shooting 52% from 3 this season). During the ensuing Mav’s timeout I asked myself the question; “Is Mike Brown the coach of the Lakers or not?” During a timeout, Coach Kobe was drawing up plays for the Lakers while Mike Brown went to the vending machine. I didn’t see him ANYWHERE near the Lakers’ huddle so he had to be on a snack break.
Jason Terry answered the Session’s 3 pointer with a 3 of his own and the game was tied. Mavs had a chance to win it in regulation but Dirk missed a shot with 1.5 seconds left to play. The game was headed to overtime.
I’m going to try to keep this synopsis of this joke-of-an-overtime as clean as possible. So I’ll keep it short and simple. Let’s do this…..
– Barnes scores even though he stepped out of bounds. Not called.
– Gasol with a baseline 3 prayer that goes in. Blatant basket interference not called. Basket good.
– Gasol with another corner 3. Pfffft, whatever. Making that his 5th 3 pointer of the season. Was that a play drawn up forPau for 3? No wonderKobe is the real coach of the team.
– Game over when Terry misses a lay up.
Mavs Lose. Now only 1 game ahead of the 7th and 8th seed and 2.5 games ahead of the 9th seed.
Interesting Game note: Matt Barnes ended up 2 assist shy of a triple double. 11 points, 11 rebounds, 8 assists. I hope you’re storing canned foods and water, because this is an obvious sign of the apocalypse.
Quote of the Night: Jason Terry: “I solely take the blame for it. I command and ask for the ball in that situation, and to not be able to deliver for the team is an utter disappointment. … Give (Barnes) credit, it was a savvy defensive play, but if I do it again, I know what kind of play I’m going to make.”
What’s On Tap: The Mavericks will now have to find a way to not think to hard about this tough loss, as they will be in Salt Lake City for a crucial game tonight.
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