Read Everything That Dunks Must Converge

Read Everything That Dunks Must Converge
by Bryan Harvey

Truth & lies in Pixar's 'The Good Dinosaur'

Truth & lies in Pixar's 'The Good Dinosaur'
by Bryan Harvey

A world of child soldiers & cowboys

A world of child soldiers & cowboys
by Bryan Harvey

To their own devices: Pablo Larrain's 'The Club'

To their own devices: Pablo Larrain's 'The Club'
by Bryan Harvey

Breakfast with Berndon: Paid Professionals Edition

February 25, 2010

On this weeks episode, Berndon talks about the Celtics before and after Sheed, the Nuggets inconsistencies, the Blazers decline, and so much more after the break.

I find that writing is much easier when listening to Biggie Smalls. See kids, I'm just like Scoop Jackson. This has no relevance to this the post, but I just wanted to throw my street cred (or lack there of) out there. We're switching up the batting order a little bit this week, so without further ado, here are the statistical studs of the week, followed by my power rankings, where my Chicago Bulls bias is seeping through. We're going to close out the 9th with my game recaps. Enjoy.

Man of the Match: Weekly Leaders

1. Rajon Rondo 3 (13.5 pts, 12.3 asst, 3.3 stls)
1. Andrew Bogut 3(20.0 pts, 14.5 rbs, 4.3 blks)
1. Carlos Boozer 3(24.3 pts, 16.3 rbs, 4.5 assts)
4. Kevin Durant 2(31.3 pts, 7.8 rbs, 2.0 stls)
4. Dwight Howard 2(27.0 pts, 16.0 rbs, 3.3 blks)
4. Darren Collison 2 (22.0 pts, 6.0 rbs, 10.0 assts)
4. Andre Miller 2 (17.8 pts, 6.0 assts, 2.3 stls)
4. Jarrett Jack 2 (19.7 pts, 8.7 assts)
4. Dirk Nowitizki 2 (26.3 pts, 6.3 rbs)
4. Chris Kaman 2  (20.3 pts, 14.7 rbs)

If Rondo ever learns to consistently hit a jump shot, he'll be on  par with Chris Paul. Bogut has helped Milwaukee climb ahead of the Bobcats into the 8th spot. Boozer hit the boards like a man possessed this week. Durant and Howard continue to dominate. Darren Collison is by far the biggest shock from this year's rookie class. I thought he underachieved all last season at UCLA. Andre Miller has the ugliest jumper in the league, but gets the job done with his assists and his ability to post up other pg's. Jarrett Jack has wrestled away the starting point guard spot from Jose Calderon, and has increased his scoring with Bosh out. Dirk is still the baddest German dude around, while Chris Kaman is still the ugliest All-Star in the history of the game.

Three Week Totals:
1. Dwight Howard 7
2. Kevin Durant 5
2. Lebron James 5
2. Josh Smith 5
2. Andrew Bogut 5

 Power Rankings
1. Lakers (43-15): Lakers shouldn’t have lost to Boston or Dallas.
2. Cleveland (44-14): Karma will punish them for sending Danny Green to the D League.
3. Denver 37-17): Erratically beautiful to watch.
4. Dallas (37-21): Beating the Lakers without Butler should do wonders for their confidence.
5. Utah (37-20): Carlos Boozer is playing out of his mind.
6. Orlando (39-19): As is Dwight Howard. But where is Rashard Lewis?
7. Boston (36-20): Should round into shape by playoff time.
8. Phoenix (36-23): Brook Lopez has better numbers, but Robin is holding his own.
9. Atlanta (36-20): Struggled out West a little.
10. Oklahoma City (33-23): Durant’s scoring streak finally came to an end.
11. San Antonio (32-23): Ginobli is starting to round back into form.
12. Portland (34-26): Brandon Roy still doesn’t look right.
13. Toronto (31-25): Raptors need Bosh to come back now, Chitown is breathing down their necks.
14. Chicago (30-27): For the second year in a row, a deadline deal has revitalized the team.
15. Milwaukee (28-28): To quote Scott Van Pelt; “Aussie Aussie Aussie, oy, oy, oy.”
16. New Orleans (30-28): Not only Collison, but Marcus Thornton was also a steal.
17. Miami (29-29): Without D Wade, they are in the lottery.
18. Memphis (29-28): Always seem to give the Lakers fits.
19. Houston (28-28): Rockets are slipping fast.
20. Charlotte (27-29): See Rockets, Houston.
21. L.A. Clippers (24-33): The Clippers have quietly won 3 in a row.
22. Detroit (21-36): Still think this team should be better than their record.
23. Philly (22-35): Iverson is gone for a while, but is this a bad thing?
24. Washington (20-35): Andray Blatche might be an All-Star one day.
25. Sacramento (18-39): Sean May needs more minutes.
26. Golden St. (16-40): Curry and Ellis give G State something to build around.
27. Indiana (19-38): College All-Star team that doesn’t translate to wins in the Association.
28. Minnesota (14-40): Kevin Love is starting to put up numbers.
29. New York (19-37): T-Mac and Lebron next year?
30. New Jersey (5-51): Can they contract them to the D League?

Game Recaps
Boston 87, LA Lakers 86: I’ve wanted to talk about this for a while, but Rasheed Wallace has single-handedly done more damage to Boston than I think people realize. We talk about Garnett or Pierce being banged up as the main reason why Boston has struggled, but if you’re going to shoot 29% from 3 and put up the following stat line (2-11, 0-1, 0-3, 4 pts, 3 rbs, 2 blks, in 20 mins, plus one technical foul and a plus/minus of -10) you need to be the basketball locker room equivalent of Kevin Millar, someone who provides value by being the wily veteran that has won a championship and that the rest of the team loves to be around. Why Doc doesn’t just give Big Baby Davis more minutes, or even Shelden "My wife is a better basketball player than me” Williams, is beyond me. Despite Sheed’s best efforts, Boston came away with the win. Even without Kobe, this game had a playoff level intensity to it. Rajon Rondo not only had 14 points and 11 assists, but came away with 5 steals and 2 or 3 plays where he just jumped into the passing lane like Charles Woodson and knocked the ball out of bounds. I haven’t seen someone outside of a shot-blocker make this kind of defensive impact in a long time. In closing, there were lots of dunks and people getting dunked on. Artest dunked on Sheed, Ray Allen dunked on Shannon Brown, and Lamar Kardashian dunked on both Kendrick Perkins and Ray Allen. Not something I usually talk about, but all of these made me get out of my seat, especially the Odom dunks.
Man of the Match: Rondo 14-5-11 5 stls

Boston 96, Portland 76: Just when you think that you have everything figured out, something unexpected happens. This is true on so many levels, but sports is no exception, as one would have thought that after winning a difficult game against the Lake Show last night, Boston would have come back flat against a rejuvenated Portland team at home. I think the age-old adage is, “that’s why they play the games.” Marcus Camby did next to nothing, Brandon Roy looks like a shell of his former self, and Boston took it to the Blazers 96-76. Boston needed its bench to play big minutes, and that it did, outscoring Portland’s 33-30, including 17-5 in the first half. Ray Allen was the only starter to play in the fourth quarter, giving the C’s a chance to rest up for their game in Denver on Sunday. The Celtics look to have everything back in order, as Garnett looked a lot better the last two nights as he has in a while. Boston held Portland to season lows in points and field goal percentage, as Portland shot an abysmal 33%.
Man of the Match: Rajon Rondo 10-11 3 stls

Chicago 122, Philly 90: Ah, it’s refreshing to type in that score. This might be a biased account, so bare with me. The Bulls look really good right now. I’ve seen other teams (Trailblazers, Portland) that made moves that in the long run might work out, but make the teams look terrible and out of sync as of right now. This isn’t the case in the Windy City, as newcomers Hakim Warrick and Flip Murray have, at least for the time being, fit right in. Murray is smaller than Salmons, but seems to be about equal (for the time being) in terms of ability. And Warrick brings most of Ty Thomas’ athleticism minus the baggage. If you were dating a hot girl who’s awesome to look at and is great in the sack, but has little annoying habits like texting or calling you 597 times a day or flipping her shit anytime you speak to another woman, and you move on and start dating a girl who’s almost if not just as hot, yet has dinner ready for you when you come home from work, and could care less who you talk to because they’re secure enough to know that they are yours, which girl would you choose? Warrick is the basketball version of that for the Bulls right now. Poor analogies aside, he gives the Bulls the rebounding and blocks, and doesn’t flip his shit and cuss out the coach, or goaltend three times a night. The Bulls seem like a more cohesive unit now, moving the ball, spreading the floor, and knocking down open shots. Yet with Murray and Warrick, they can still get up and down the floor and run people to death. I like this trade, and I like where my team is at right now.
Man of the Match: Taj Gibson 20-13 2 blks

Denver 114, Boston 105: This one held up as I thought, as I went 1-1 on my debut with Sunday NBA predictions. Denver came out and shot the lights out early as they were at 73% from the field after stanza number one. Melo did his best Lebron imitation, as he went for a career high 8 assists. I’d also like to point out that much like Will Graves, I also believe that J.R. Smith is a werewolf. Coincidentally, he was going to sign with UNC if he didn’t make the jump to the association. He is an offensive train wreck at times, yet such a vital part of the Nuggets offense. He was 1-6 with 3 points going into the 4th quarter, then started launching 30 footers on his way to a 5-8 16 point closing period. If Smith, Carmelo, and Billups are hitting, with KMart, Birdman, and Nene protecting the goal, the Nuggets can be scary. Boston played decent, and KG seems as though he can actually run and jump again, but they weren’t going to beat L.A, Portland, and Denver on the road in 4 days. They just aren’t that good anymore.
Man of the Match: Nene 16-10 2 stls

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