Posts Tagged ‘Channing Frye’

Horry Scale: Joe Cool

VIDEO: Joe Johnson’s GWBB

The game winning buzzer beaters are coming fast and furious now. So yeah, we’re on the third Horry Scale entry of the last seven days, as last night Joe Johnson and the Brooklyn Nets went to Phoenix, and their game drifted into overtime before JJ managed to end it with a dagger. NBA players obviously can not resist the allure of making Horry Scale appearances.

Before we get too far into this, we should stop and explain. What is the Horry Scale? For those who are new around these parts, the Horry Scale examines a game-winning buzzer-beater (GWBB) in the categories of difficulty, game situation (was the team tied or behind at the time?), importance (playoff game or garden-variety Kings-Pistons game?) and celebration (is it over the top or too chill? Just the right panache or needs more sauce?). Then we give it an overall grade on a scale of 1-5 Robert Horrys, the patron saint of last-second daggers.

With the rules in place, let’s check out last night’s game-winner.

I’ve long held that Joe Johnson is one of the most underrated offensive players in the NBA. I watched nearly every Hawks game he played, and saw him night after night carry the load offensively. It wasn’t always pretty, it wasn’t always the most efficient offense, but it was more often than not effective. Johnson can score in so many ways, and that versatility was on display last night. Joe’s GWBB was a runner in the paint with two defenders coming after him. Joe put a slight hesitation dribble on PJ Tucker and watched him soar past, then went up and lofted the ball high over Channing Frye for the bucket, just in time. On first glance it wasn’t particularly spectacular, but the more I watch it the more impressive it becomes — going the length of the court in four seconds, being patient enough to let Tucker take himself out of the play, and then getting the shot off cleanly over a seven-footer before the clock trickled out of time.

So here we are, game tied at 98 in overtime, 8 seconds remaining on the clock and about 2 on the shot clock, and Frye misses a three from the wing. Johnson ends up with the rebound, and the rest is history. You often hear coaches debate whether or not to use a timeout in those circumstances. Do you stop the game to set up a play, but also potentially allow the defense to get set? Or do you take advantage of the chaos and let them play? Another potential subplot for the Nets is, Who takes the final shot in a close game? All of these issues were avoided by Coach Kidd by just letting the game play out in the moment. (Worth noting: Deron Williams had sprained his ankle earlier and was out, so perhaps that played into Kidd’s decision as well.)

The Nets have been struggling this season, starting off 2-5, one loss away from the basement in the Eastern Conference, and not looking anything like the contending team most experts projected them to be. Conversely, the Suns have been surprisingly good, beginning 5-3 and making people wonder if talk of tanking was premature. It’s still early in the season, but a W for the Nets could help them start to turn things around. As Johnson said after the game, “It was big. There could be a domino effect.” The Nets better hope so: They play the Clippers in Los Angeles tonight.

The jubilation was there, if a bit muted until Kevin Garnett arrived and shook up the huddle a bit. To be fair, Joe Johnson has never been accused of being demonstrative. (Also, check out Tucker in the background on his knees, head to the court, literally floored by the loss.) “I couldn’t even celebrate, I was so tired,” Johnson told the New York Post. (He logged almost 45 minutes between regulation and overtime.) “But I was just ready to get out of there. [My teammates] are trying to celebrate and I’m ready to go… I’m like, ‘Let’s go into the locker room and shower and let’s get out of here. … We’ve got a tough game tomorrow.’”

Sneaky difficult shot, pretty important game for the Nets, a team excited to get the win. There have been tougher and more important game winners, for sure, but I feel like this a GWBB that will overlooked by some. Anyway, for the reasons outlined above, I’m giving this one three Horrys.


That’s my take. How many Horry’s would you give Joe Johnson’s game-winner?

Three For All: Phoenix Suns II

by Micah Hart

As everyone knows by now, the compressed NBA schedule will force every team to play three games in three nights at least one this season (42 times in total). With only 66 games to stake a claim to a playoff spot or seed, how teams perform during these killer slates could have a large impact on how their seasons turn out.

With that in mind, we’re going to keep track of each of the 42 three-plays to see which teams take advantage and which teams fall apart. Up next, the Phoenix Suns, who played three straight from Mar. 14-16.

The Phoenix Suns’ season can pretty easily be summed up by their two entries in the three for all challenge. In their first foray back in February, Phoenix went winless, part of a four-game skid that saw the team fall a season-worst seven games under .500 after a loss to the Lakers on Feb. 17.

That game must have shook something loose in the desert, because ever since the Suns have been scorching, winning 10 of 13 games and moving all the way back to .500 on the season at the culmination of their second threeplay:

Game 1: Suns 120, Jazz 111 – Part of the reason for the Suns’ success has been the production the team has been getting from up and down the roster. To wit: Channing Frye dropped a season-high 26 points (with nine rebounds), Marcin Gortat had 25, and Jared Dudley had 21 in the win over the Jazz. 1 point

Game 2: Suns 91, Clippers 87 – Home win over the Jazz? Not bad, but nothing special. Road win over the Clippers? Now that’s a nice win, despite how weird it makes me feel to write that sentence. Oh, and did I mention they did it without Grant Hill and Steve Nash, who picked up DNP-OMs (Did Not Play – Old Men)? Seriously. Sebastian Telfair started this game. Crazy season indeed. 4 points (3 for win, 1 for road)

Game 3: Suns 109, Pistons 101 – I give Bassy credit for holding down the fort while Nash took the night off against LAC, and the rest paid off for Steve as he dished out 17 dimes, tied for a season high, against Detroit. Back to what I was saying earlier about contributions from everywhere? Robin Lopez had 14 points off the bench in this one, and Michael Redd had 11. If I so much as get a hangnail from now on, I’m going to Phoenix to have the Suns’ medical staff take a look at it. 5 points

It’s not so long ago that everyone was proclaiming this a lost season in Phoenix, and up until Thursday’s trade deadline many were holding out hope that the #FreeSteveNash movement would mercifully spring Canada’s finest from his Arizona prison.

Instead, the Suns join the Heat, Bulls, and Thunder (owners of the league’s three best records) as the only teams to go undefeated in the three play, and in doing so moved into 9th place in the Western Conference playoff chase, just two games behind the Nuggets, who just traded for JaVale McGee, so good luck with that. 10 points for the Suns, and total redemption for their first effort a month ago. This could be a playoff team after all.

Up next: The Clippers take their second crack at the triumvirate, playing three straight Mar. 20-22.

Three for all Top Ten:
Miami Heat (15 points)
Chicago Bulls (13 points)
OKC Thunder (12 points)
Phoenix Suns II (10 points)
New Jersey Nets II (8 points)
Atlanta Hawks (8 points)
Houston Rockets (7 points)
Portland Trail Blazers (6 points)
L.A. Clippers (6 points)
Philadelphia 76ers (6 points)

Full Three for all standings

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Frye invents a technique

by Zettler Clay

Apparently, Channing Frye came up with a new way to defend baseline drives — and by “new way,” I mean jump at the offensive player with your arms glued to your ribs. Or something like that.

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Bragging Rights Bracket: No. 2 Arizona vs. No. 3 Kentucky

by Micah Hart

For the complete Bragging Rights rules and to vote for other matchups, click here. In this matchup we’ve got some Wildcat-on-Wildcat action as Arizona takes on Kentucky.


Arizona Wildcats

Starters (all stats per 48 minutes):

Andre Iguodala, Sixers: 18.6 points, 7.8 rebounds, 8.4 assists, 0.7 blocks, 2.1 steals
Richard Jefferson, Spurs: 17.5 points, 6.0 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 0.7 blocks, 0.8 steals
Channing Frye, Suns: 18.4 points, 9.8 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.5 blocks, 0.9 steals
Chase Budinger, Rockets: 21.4 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 0.5 blocks, 1.2 steals
Jason Terry, Mavericks: 24.5 points, 2.9 rebounds, 6.4 assists, 0.2 blocks, 1.7 steals

Missed the cut: Gilbert Arenas, Magic; Jerryd Bayless, Raptors; Mike Bibby, Heat; Jordan Hill, Rockets; Mustafa Shakur, Wizards; Luke Walton, Lakers

Team synopsis: Leave Agent Zero on the bench? Am I crazy? Maybe. But this competition wants the players currently playing the best, not who has the best resume. Arenas just isn’t playing at the same level anymore, and both Budinger and Frye are having better seasons. This is a dangerous Arizona team, with a lot of players who can fill up the stat sheet in a number of ways.


Al Jefferson, how do you rate on the Horry Scale?

by Micah Hart

There have been several nice game-winning shots the last few days that I would love to have written about here on All Ball. Zach Randolph‘s corner shot to beat Dallas. Carmelo Anthony‘s first game-winner as a KnickChanning Frye‘s repeat performance against the Nets. Alas, those shots all occurred with time left on the clock, and the Horry Scale rules are hard and firm. I am nothing if not slavishly obedient to the rules of my own creation.

Fortunately, Al Jefferson‘s tip-in at the buzzer against the Raptors last night fits snugly without our criteria for Horry inclusion, so let’s dispense with the intro and get to it.

Once again, the Horry scale examines a shot  in the categories of difficulty, game situation (was the team tied or behind at the time), importance (playoff game or garden-variety Clippers-Nets game), and celebration, and give it an overall grade on a scale of 1-5 Robert Horrys.

How did Big Al do? Let’s investigate:


Tough to rate. After all, a tip-in like this is pretty much all luck. Unlike, say, Mike Dunleavy‘s GWBB from earlier this season against the Hornets, where he was clearly in position to try to tip the ball directly into the basket, Jefferson’s touch on the ball is almost like a volleyball set that just happens to take the right trajectory into the hoop. He’s obviously trying to tip in the game-winner, but you rarely see a shot go four feet in the air from 10 inches in front of the basket.

Game Situation

Tie ballgame, but it almost doesn’t matter with a tip because there is no time to consider alternatives.


Ever since the Jazz traded Deron Williams to New Jersey, most people have written off Utah in the Western conference playoff race. It’s not an entirely unfair assertion considering they were 2-5 without him before last night’s win. However, there is still talent in Utah, and though it is still struggling, the Jazz are just 1 1/2 games behind Memphis for the No. 8 spot. The playoffs are still a possibility, which makes wins like this one immensely important.


Too muted. Am I right? I suppose Jefferson could feel a little sheepish for getting the winning points on a shot that wasn’t 100 percent intentional, but a game-winner is a game-winner. I’m not demanding the Jazz players pile on top of him, but would a nice group hug be too much to ask?


2 Horrys. It certainly was an unusual buzzer-beater, and a much-needed win for Utah, but between it being a tie game and a somewhat listless celebration, I just don’t think I can go any higher than two.

What do you think?

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Heating up the Frye-ing pan

by Zettler Clay

Who in the basketball world is hotter than Channing Frye? In the span of a month, he went from receiving a pleasant tap to becoming the latest reincarnation of Robert Horry.

Yesterday was Exhibit A.

Tonight was Exhibit B.

Wanna know the coolest part about all this? He doesn’t seem the least bit surprised in either scenario.

Channing Frye, how do you rate on the Horry scale?

by Micah Hart

The Horry scale got a nice break during All-Star Weekend, but now it’s back to business courtesy of Channing Frye and the Phoenix Suns. After the Pacers’ Danny Granger missed his own chance to join the ranks at the end of regulation, Frye made the most of his opportunity in overtime to give the Suns a 110-108 win in Indy.

Once again, the Horry scale examines a shot  in the categories of difficulty, game situation (was the team tied or behind at the time), importance (playoff game or garden-variety Clippers-Nets game), and celebration, and give it an overall grade on a scale of 1-5 Robert Horrys.

How did Channing do? Let’s dip our toes:


The shot was from deep, but Frye is an excellent marksman from outside so that’s no big thing. Credit to Channing for the headfake on Brandon Rush to create the room he needed to get the shot off, and also credit to Jared Dudley for setting a screen on Frye’s man to free the big man for the look.

Game Situation

A tie game, so a miss would have meant nothing more than a second overtime period.


We are deep into the second half of the season, and with both the Suns and Pacers fighting for a spot in the postseason (the Pacers fell back into a tie for 8th in the East with the loss, while the Suns moved within 1.5 games of Memphis for 8th in the West), neither of these teams can afford to lose.


The Suns congregate by the scorer’s table to mob Frye after the make. And though the video above doesn’t show it, Frye gets a to give Steve Nash a celebratory piggy-back ride. That’s gotta count for something.


2.5 Horrys. Don’t get me wrong, it was a sweet finish by Frye, but that’s a shot he can hit pretty regularly and it was a tie game. I give it an extra half star for the fact that both teams are chasing playoff berths.

What do you think?

Last night in a … man’s dunk

by Micah Hart

Channing Frye, you’re going to have to push a lot harder than that.

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Channing Frye, awesome show, great job!

by Micah Hart

I’m not exactly sure what is going on here in this Tim and Eric-esque talk show skit featuring Suns big man Channing Frye. I dare say you won’t see a more absurd video featuring an NBA player this year. Clearly, Frye is in on this joke, otherwise he’d have bolted about 15 seconds into it (or perhaps when he saw them misspell his name in the opening credits).

If you like absurdist humor, you may enjoy this, and if you don’t, well…this probably isn’t for you. Roll it!


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