Old-Fashioned Butt Cooking

By: 11.01.09  •  43 Comments

Tony Parker

Breaking down the first-week performances of the serious 2010 title contenders, Spurs announcer Sean Elliott messed up his words and said the Lakers took an “old-fashioned butt cooking” from the Mavs on Friday night. As it turns out, that was the best way to describe what the Spurs were about to do to the Kings on Saturday … Despite Sacramento starting probably the worst frontcourt in the League (Jason Thompson, Sean May, Desmond Mason), it was one of those nights where Tim Duncan didn’t have to do much and could let the smaller guys go to work. Tony Parker had 24 points and seven dimes, and Richard Jefferson finally got off for 21 points; Duncan (7 pts) and DeJuan Blair just cleaned up any mess, pulling down 10 boards apiece. The Spurs were up 20-plus in the third quarter and sat the stars for the fourth … And because things can always get worse for the Kings, Tyreke Evans (6 pts, 6 asts) hurt his ankle in the second half and didn’t return … How’s this for some Halloween craziness: In the first quarter, a bat flew onto the court — like an actual bat, not a baseball bat — scaring the sh*t out of half the players and stopping the game in its tracks. So Manu Ginobili casually smacks the bat out of mid-air with one hand, picks it up and carries it to somebody who could get rid of it, gets his hand sprayed with sanitizer and goes about his business … Speaking of the Mavs, there was no predictable letdown as they came off the big national TV win at Staples and registered, well, another win at Staples. The Clippers withstood a 17-3 run in the third quarter — capped by a Dirk Nowitzki mid-range jumper that made one L.A. announcer say, “He’s the best shooter IN THE WORLD from that distance!” — and tied it up in the fourth. Jason Terry hit a three to get the lead back, and a Jason Kidd alley-oop to Erick Dampier a little later gave Dallas some breathing room before Dirk (24 pts, 9 rebs) stuck a baseline J with 30 seconds left for the dagger … Believe it or not, L.A.’s fourth-quarter comeback was sparked by Craig Smith playing solid defense on Dirk, and by Sebastian Telfair‘s offense. With Baron Davis on the bench, Bassy was sticking jumpers, setting guys up for inside buckets, and one time caught Dirk cold on an in-and-out in the lane to get himself a layup. Smith forced Dirk into several misses in the fourth, and almost gave L.A. a chance at a last-ditch run when he stripped Dirk but threw an ‘oop intended for Rasual Butler out of bounds .. The Clips’ announcers insisted that Rick Carlisle looks exactly like Jim Carrey, and thought it was the funniest thing in the world … Nothing like getting a couple of patsies on the schedule to get your swagger back. The Cavs got their first win of the season by running through the Wolves on Friday, then last night stomped the Bobcats. Delonte West made his season debut, and the home crowd gave him a standing ovation before he put up 13 points off the bench. Mo Williams (24 pts) and West capitalized on LeBron (14 pts, 9 asts) getting them open looks in the second half, and the ‘Cats were held below 80 points again … The Rockets have to be getting sick of looking at Brandon Roy. He gave them 42 points last night (13-13 FT) in Houston’s home opener, but whenever B-Roy got the Blazers close, Trevor Ariza (33 pts) or Aaron Brooks (28 pts) would hit a shot to keep the score just out of reach … When Ariza has his jumper going early, he’s going to put up a lot of points with the Rockets. But unlike a B-Roy type of scorer, he’s not going to beat a lot of guys off the dribble and get himself tough buckets (or to the line) when his J isn’t hitting. His handle just isn’t that good yet … Other notable stat lines from Saturday: Gilbert Arenas put up 32 points and seven assists and Andray Blatche scored 30 in a win over New Jersey; and Brandon Jennings had 24 points and three steals in a win over Detroit, while Ben Gordon scored 26 in the loss … The Sixers are looking like they can replicate the high-octane offense Eddie Jordan had in Washington, but sometimes also look like they can be just as bad as those Wizards were defensively. With five seconds left in the fourth quarter of Sixers/Knicks, Andre Iguodala let Chris Duhon blow right by him, and when no help D arrived, Duhon had an uncontested layup that forced overtime. (The Knicks scored 41 in the fourth.) But in their second consecutive game to go to extra frames, New York fell apart, giving up 17 straight points after Al Harrington (42 pts) fouled out and leaving the MSG fans searching for a replacement chant for “Fire Isiah” … Iguodala finished with 32 points, 11 boards and eight assists, Lou Williams posted a 27-10-7 line, and Thaddeus Young — described as an “uncanny shot-maker” by Clyde Frazier — scored 25 points … Just when you think Larry Hughes should be mummified, he drops 18 points, five boards, six assists and four steals off the bench. For a guy nobody wanted to talk to in the locker room pre-game, he was pretty popular afterward … For the Knicks home opener, they brought in the Jabbawockeez (apparently doing the NBA circuit this week) and had some elaborate WWE-style intros. Stephon Marbury was even in the building sitting courtside, but disappeared sometime during the first quarter. One of our guys who was at the game heard that Steph had paid for a second-row seat, but somehow ended up in Spike Lee‘s usual seat in the front row before security kicked him out … We’re out like Starbury …

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