Maybe NBA franchises just need to buy less-slippery cups.
After fouling out of Saturday’s Clippers-Warriors game late, Los Angeles’ Blake Griffin made it two controversial drink spills in the NBA this season. This time, there was a victim. This time, it was water. Call it “Watergate,” but that’s already been taken. Purposely or not, Griffin doused a Golden State fan positioned directly behind him at the scorer’s table as the L.A. star reacted by throwing his arms back in disbelief upon seeing the replay of his last foul on the arena jumbotron.
And, oh yeah, he had a cup full of water in his hand. So, this happened…
It’s been a year of ups and downs for Nets forward Kris Humphries. On the negative side, he became a bit of a national punchline after his ill-fated romance(?) with Kim Kardashian and their corresponding reality TV show. On the positive, he signed a two-year, $24-million dollar contract to stay with the Nets as they moved to Brooklyn. We’ll call it a push.
Humphries appears to have accepted the turn of events in his life, and certainly hasn’t shrunk from the spotlight. Here he is participating in a photo shoot for a recent NY Post feature story:
“Hey, if you can’t laugh at yourself, you can’t make fun of other people,” he says. “I’m open to being made fun of. You can’t take life too seriously or be too sensitive because it’s like, who wants to live like that?”
Quick trivia quiz: Can you name the CEO of the Brooklyn Nets? How about the CEO of any NBA team? Would you ever think knowing the answer could be a potential life-changer?
It was for Nets fan Vivek Shah, who recognized Nets CEO Brett Yormark coming out of a Manhattan sushi restaurant and decided to tell him what a fan of the team he is and get a photo. Yormark, clearly impressed, then invited Shah to tour the Nets’ offices in Brooklyn. With the cameras rolling, Yormark offered Shah some swag from the Nets store and, the cherry on top, an internship with the team’s accounting department.
Check it out:
It’s a nice little bit of PR for the Nets, and Yormark is careful to point out the team’s integration into the Brooklyn skyline.
And who knows, maybe once Shah starts his internship, he’ll get to meet some of the Nets’ other front office superstars like Jay-Z and Mikhail Prokhorov CMO Fred Mangione or Senior VP of Event Marketing and Community Relations Petra Pope!
When the Knicks infamously declined to match the Rockets’ offer for Jeremy Lin, bringing the Linsanity era in New York City to a screeching halt, many began to wonder if residents of the Big Apple had finally had enough of the team’s bumbling ways and would consider jumping ship to root for the Nets. After all, Brooklyn is the trendy spot, Jay-Z is a part owner, and they’ve shown a similar ability to throw gaudy contracts at players without blinking an eyelash.
One person we won’t see making that trade any time soon, despite his Brooklyn heritage, is Knicks’ superfan Spike Lee.
“I wish I had a dollar for every time people ask me that — I could finance another film,” he says. “No, no and no. Can’t do that. Can’t.
“I am orange and blue, baby,” he says in reference to the colors of the Knicks. “Orange and blue.”
Though Lee has set many of his best films in his native borough, including his upcoming release “Red Hook Summer”, he maintains his allegiance to the Knicks, even with the firestorm set off by Lin’s departure. And though he maintains his loyalty, Lee made clear he’s not happy with the team’s prolonged lack of success either:
“Look, I hope Carmelo Anthony saw LeBron holding that championship trophy. Amar’e’s my man. But I’m tired of looking up at those old championship banners.
“No lollygagging, no half-stepping, no shenanigans, no tomfoolery. Got to get serious, got to.”
Lee’s loyalty is impressive, especially considering the vitriol being directed towards the Knicks’ ownership and management team over the summer. But if the Knicks continue to fall short of expectations while seeing their new neighbors achieve success in Brooklyn, you have to wonder if Spike is doing the right thing.
Back at the 2011 trade deadline, you may recall that the New Jersey Nets swung a deal to acquire Deron Williams from the Utah Jazz, with eyes on bringing the All-Star guard with them to Brooklyn when the team moved there this fall. There was just this slight little complication with that plan, which is that Williams’ contract expired at the end of this past season and he is free to shop his wares to the highest bidder.
In a related story, today is Deron Williams‘ 28th birthday (Happy bday big guy!), and the Nets have taken the opportunity to wish him a happy and a healthy, in a way that does not seem at all desperate to remind him of how much they have riding on his upcoming decision about his future.
The 2011-12 NBA regular season will come to an end tonight, and one thing we can say for sure is the compressed 66-game slate certainly gave teams their share of challenges. Chief among those (in our eyes at least) were the back-to-back-to-back series that every team faced at least once throughout the year, a chore that never occurs during a normal 82-game calendar but was made necessary once again due to a lockout (the last time teams played three games in three nights was 1998, the last time the NBA played a shortened season due to a labor stoppage).
With 42 three-for-all sets built into the calendar, we made it our business here at All Ball to document each one, curious to see what information we might glean from them. Would it be an accurate predictor of postseason achievement? Would we see NCAA-tournament style cinderella runs from some of the lesser squads? Could anyone win what we assumed would be an incredibly grueling third game?
Let’s run through some of the numbers and see what’s what.
7 — Number of times teams went undefeated in their three for all challenge, led by the Spurs, who managed to do it twice within the span of less than a month. The Spurs’ second run saw them match the Heat with 15 points, the maximum possible score allowable for three road wins by double-digit margins. We’ll break down who’s was more impressive on Thursday night. In addition to those two, the other perfectionists were the Bulls, who maxed out their trip with 13 points (all wins were by double-digits, but they played only one road game), the Thunder, the Hawks, who amazingly found the strength to win the third game in four overtimes over the Jazz, and the Suns (more on them in a second). Of the six teams to taste perfection, only Phoenix will be sitting out the postseason.
6 — Number of times teams went winless. Would it shock you to learn that the Wizards were the only team to go defeated twice? Would it shock you further to learn the Bobcats, the worst team in NBA history, aren’t on this list? In addition to the Ashington Izards (No Ws – I R HILARIOUS), the Pistons, Clippers, Mavericks, and Suns found the going toughest. The Suns, incidentally, were the only squad to put up undefeated and winless marks, which really encapsulates their season in a nutshell, from being 12-19 to just missing out on a playoff spot after their loss in Utah on Tuesday.
4.5 — The average score for the 42 attempts was 4.5 points. The most common score was 2 points, accomplished 10 times, while no one scored 14 or 9.
22-20 — Record for teams in the third game of the three for all. I gotta tip my cap to these guys, I would have pegged this mark to be much worse before the season started.
Almost had two Horry Scale entries tonight, but sadly Jordan Farmar‘s game-winner for the Nets left a measly 0.4 seconds left on the clock for the Clippers to salvage a win. A great shot no doubt (though where was the Clippers’ D on that play?), but twasn’t a buzzer-beater, so it fails to qualify. Fortunately, we still have Derrick Rose to take care of us.
For those that 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 Clippers-Nets game), and celebration, and give it an overall grade on a scale of 1-5 Robert Horrys.
Rose is one of the ultimate closers in the NBA, so it’s a bit of a surprise to me this is his first appearance on the Horry Scale. How did the league’s reigning MVP stack up? Let’s find out:
Not terribly difficult for Rose, who created some space for himself against Brandon Jennings before knocking down the step-back jumper from the top of the key to win the game. However, I am going to complain just a little here. I won’t argue with the outcome, but with as much time as Rose had to work with in a tie game, I want him to get to the basket there. I’ll give him a pass, though, because that’s typically what he does in game-winning situations. But a lesson to the kids — never settle for the J.
Potential trade bait Ersan Ilyasova scored on an offensive rebound to tie the game at 104-104 with 24 seconds left to play, which gave the Bulls all the time in the world to set up a play for the win. Chicago cleared it out for Rose, who went mano-a-mano with Jennings for the final shot.
The Bulls fell to the Heat in last season’s Eastern Conference finals, and the two teams appear on a crash course to go at it again this May. With the way Miami has improved, home-court advantage could certainly play a big role in that series, and as such, every win for Chicago will matter from here until the end of the regular season. The Bulls remain two games ahead of the Heat with this win.
Watch the clip again, and listen for the crowd’s reaction (go ahead, I’ll wait). What city was this game played in again? I had to look a few times to remind myself it was played in Milwaukee because judging by the crowd’s reaction, you might have thought it was the Windy City. Look how much red is in that crowd! I realize Chicago is a short distance from Milwaukee, but that’s embarrassing. Bonus points for the skyward finger-point celebration from Brian Scalabrine.
1.5 Horrys. A tie game, plenty of time to work with, and a more-difficult-shot-than-necessary from Rose makes this one fairly standard. But I’m giving an extra half-Horry in honor of the Bulls fans for turning the place into United Center North.
What do you think?
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