TAIWAN EXPLAINS NBC'S LATE-NIGHT MESS
MEAT IS THE WORD

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By 01.20.10

Shaq (photo. Chenoa Maxwell)


LeBron is just trying to get people mad at him for not taking part in the dunk contest, isn’t he? In his first game since the All-Star 2010 dunk field was announced and he wasn’t part of it, ‘Bron (28 pts, 9 rebs, 11 asts, 3 blks, 3 stls) not only polished off a few contest-worthy dunks against the Raptors last night, he made one of the All-Star dunk contestants look like he has no business sharing air space with the King … First half, Mo Williams drove baseline left, and while Toronto’s post defenders turned to their heads, LeBron cut on a back-pick and was set up for an easy two-hand double clutch dunk. (This was after ‘Bron met DeMar DeRozan at the rim and ate his layup attempt alive.) Andrea Bargnani watching LBJ zip past him on his way to the bucket was like seeing a guy standing in the middle of the freeway while the cars went past. Remember the scene in Bowfinger when dude had to run across the expressway? It was like that … Later on, LeBron got another back-pick and found himself all alone as Mo (22 pts, 10 asts) set him up with a lob that he threw down almost looking into the rim. Then in the home stretch of the fourth quarter, LeBron and Shaq got into a plain old “Who can rip the rim down?” contest as the Cavs began to create enough cushion for a win. Shaq won that one … The addition of Shaq has proven to help the Cavs in dealing with Dwight Howard, but Chris Bosh (21 pts, 10 rebs) is a whole different animal. Shaq has no chance of keeping up with Bosh’s outside game and quicker moves around the basket, and Zydrunas Ilgauskas is in the same boat. Anderson Varejao tries hard but lacks a certain amount of coordination, and J.J. Hickson is still a couple of years away … The Raptors didn’t play a bad game, and they probably would have pulled off the upset if Hedo Turkoglu had played. Oh wait … If we only told you D-Wade dropped 18 points in the first quarter and finished with 32 while sitting out the fourth, while Danny Granger went 2-for-16 and was missing layups from point-blank range, you can guess how Heat/Pacers turned out. That first quarter where Wade went off? The Pacers only scored 19 of their own. Throughout the 30-piecing, Indiana was sluggish in that “We had an off day in Miami yesterday” way we’ve seen so many times … This actually would have been the right game for Jim O’Brien to get T.J. Ford off the bench and let him wild out. Ford is at his best when his team is getting blown out and nobody else wants to shoot. He can put on the blinders and shoot all he wants without feeling bad … Did you notice Coach O’Brien was wearing flip-flops? He apparently broke his pinky toe when he kicked some furniture getting out of bed. Although they could’ve said he got hurt kicking things during a Pacers practice and we would’ve believed it … If you missed it over the MLK holiday, some of the nation’s top high schoolers were in action in some high-profile tournaments. Over on HighSchoolHoop.com, we have weekend recaps from the Hoophall Classic in Springfield, Mass., and the King Holiday Hoopfest in Seattle. Duke fans will find some good news there, the state of California crowned its most prolific coach of all-time, and arguably the best player on the West Coast — who our reporter compares to no less than Joe Johnson, T-Mac and Kobe — dominated one of the nation’s best teams … We’re out like flip-flops and socks …


TOPICS#DWIGHT HOWARD#KOBE BRYANT#LeBron James
TAGSANDERSON VAREJAOCHRIS BOSHDANNY GRANGERDEMAR DEROZANDWYANE WADEHEDO TURKOGLUJJ HicksonJOE JOHNSONMO WILLIAMSShaquille O'NealSmackTJ FordTRACY MCGRADYZydrunas Ilgauskas

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