Mo Williams channels Joe Namath (and Billy Hoyle)

Nuggets rout the Lakers; Vince McMahon gets his revenge

By 05.26.09
J.R. Smith

J.R. Smith

Alright, so maybe we were getting spoiled by the consistently awesome awesomeness of these NBA conference finals. Before yesterday, it had been down-to-the-wire games and 40-point efforts from Kobe and LeBron in between dominant performances by ‘Melo and Dwight. But last night, the Nuggets simply laid the hammer down on L.A. for the first outright blowout of this round, coming one point shy of a 20-piecing in another dominant performance on their home floor … On paper, there’s no way the Nuggets should have dominated this game. Carmelo was not only off (15 pts, 3-16 FG), he rolled his ankle in the first half and was hobbled the rest of the way. Not to mention his teammates weren’t exactly torching the net (7-24 3PA), Kobe still gave ’em 34 — including 14 points in the fourth — and Pau Gasol put up 21 points and 10 boards. Where the Nuggets won was by getting contributions from everybody, including the bench, plus owning the glass, and making all those momentum plays that kept the Pepsi Center crowd rocking. Kenyon Martin (13 pts, 15 rebs), Nene (14 pts, 13 rebs) and Birdman (14 rebs) were flying all over the place going after the ball like it was stuffed with cash, while J.R. Smith (24 pts) and Chauncey (24 pts) were slinging daggers … And just like in Sunday’s Cavs/Magic foul-fest, the refs made sure they would be heard from. Both teams shot 84 free throws, and four technicals were handed out … Given what we’ve seen this postseason, which reality do you think the Lakers are more excited about: One more season of Derek Fisher at $5 million, or at least four more seasons of Andrew Bynum at $12-16 million a pop? … Even if it’s his only two points of the game, Dahntay Jones is good for one sick dunk every night. Yesterday it was a breakaway windmill in the first quarter that was from the 2000 Steve Francis playbook. With Jones and Mickael Pietrus doing their thing this postseason, that should be good news for potential lock-down/sparkplug guys like Sam Young and Terrence Williams going into the NBA Draft. Of course, we say the same thing every year about undersized glass-easting power forwards, but that doesn’t stop dudes like Brandon Bass and Paul Millsap from falling too far every year … On some beach somewhere, Cherokee Parks is probably sitting there, thinking about Birdman getting all this media/fan love and wondering, “What did I do wrong?” … After having to move his WWE “Raw” show to Staples Center in L.A. last night, you knew Vince McMahon was gonna be all over the Nuggets. First there was an in-ring confrontation between Vince and a guy dressed up as Denver owner Stan Kroenke, in which dropped the BOMBSHELL that — wait for it — Kroenke’s real first name is “Enos.” Goosebumps. Naturally this ended with Vince beating up the pretend-owner. And the main event was a 10-man tag match where John Cena, Batista, MVP, Kennedy and Jerry Lawler (the good guys) wore Lakers jerseys and beat Randy Orton, Cody Rhodes, Ted DiBiase, Big Show and The Miz (the bad guys), who were wearing Nuggets jerseys … Did you catch Ron Harper, Robert Horry and Shawn Kemp on Spike TV’s “Pros vs. Joes”? The Reign Man was acting weird; taking all kinds of cheap shots on the poor “joes,” and one time pulling a Pete Bell and punting the ball across the gym after getting called for a foul. We know the point of that show is for the pros to trash-talk the regular guys into submission, but who knew Harper had that kind of mouth on him? The “Why don’t you pass the ball to your girlfriend?” line was hilarious … We’re out like Kemp’s chance at a comeback …

TAGSANDREW BYNUMBirdman AndersenCHAUNCEY BILLUPSDahntay JonesDEREK FISHERJR SMITHKENYON MARTINMickael PietrusNenePAU GASOLRobert HorryRon HarperSam YoungSHAWN KEMPSmackSteve FrancisTerrence Williamsvince mcmahon

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