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Cream of the Crop

By 01.28.10

Not that he really needed to, but Chris Bosh sealed what will be his fifth straight All-Star selection later tonight with a dominating effort against the Heat on Wednesday. Breaking out the throwback unis from the 1947 Toronto Huskies — oddly enough, a team that was also accused of being soft and not playing defense — the Raptors’ win moved them into fifth-place in the East while Miami dropped to sixth … The Raps were down by 13 in the first half, but rallied and were clinging to a small lead late in the fourth quarter. After Bosh (24 pts, 18 rebs) hit a jumper to put them up by seven, one T-Dot announcer screamed, “The cream rises to the top!” Even when Bosh messed up, it worked for him. One time he took a turnaround hook that hit all-glass, but Amir Johnson was right there for a follow dunk to make it almost look like Bosh meant to pass it to him … Miami got within three a couple times down the stretch, but with 15 seconds to go, Jose Calderon drew the defense and hit Antoine Wright in the corner for the dagger trey. Wright looked like he was gonna do the Big Balls Dance, but thought better and did the Rated-PG version. Or he thought better and realized dudes who are barely in the League shouldn’t be dancing too hard … Creepy line of the night from Toronto’s announcer: “(D-Wade) is just SOAKING WET! Perspiration, inspiration, performance, all at a high level!” … Wade put up 35 and 10 dimes, but only scored four in the fourth quarter. Between last night and the Cleveland game where he scored two points in the second half, is Wade showing signs of fatigue after carrying the Heat for a year and a half? Or are we just seeing what happens when defenses can focus solely on Wade because they’re not worried about anybody else? Michael Beasley couldn’t help, as he sat out the second half with a knee injury … As much as J.R. Smith oozes cocky swagger when he’s sticking 28-footers and dunking on people, he’s the total opposite when things aren’t going his way. At the end of the first quarter of Nuggets/Rockets, J.R. was anticipating an inbound pass from Birdman so he could launch an 80-footer, when Trevor Ariza flew in for the interception and hit a buzzer-beating banker. As soon as J.R. saw Trevor step in front of him, he hung his head and walked away like somebody just stole his bike … In the fourth it was a different story, as Smith (22 pts) hit two threes to cap a 10-0 run that put the Nuggets up for good and was back to his old self. Denver won its second straight without ‘Melo in the lineup … Indianapolis Colts kicker Matt Stover was interviewed the Pacers/Lakers game and was asked about Danny Granger, a New Orleans native playing in Colts territory. “He’d better be rooting for the Colts,” Stover laughed. “I’ve got guys on my team that are a lot bigger than he is.” … Granger would’ve welcomed some of those big dudes to help him deal with the Lakers. The Pacers hung around for a half, but L.A.’s size was too much: Andrew Bynum (27 pts, 12 rebs), Pau Gasol (21 pts, 13 rebs) and Lamar Odom (12 pts, 14 rebs) damn near out-rebounded Indiana by themselves … Leave it to the Clippers to allow the Nets to reach that monumental four-win benchmark. We’ve got to admit, we haven’t watched the Nets much lately, so this game was full of surprises. Where did Kris Humphries (25 pts) and Chris Quinn come from? When did Keyon Dooling and Trenton Hassell become starters? How has Devin Harris not started chain-smoking yet? … In case you forgot, Tim Duncan is a beast. Spurs/Hawks was supposed to be one of the marquee games of the night, but TD turned it into a rout by DESTROYING Atlanta’s front line for 21 points and 27 rebounds. Covering for a bad shooting night (5-20 FG), Duncan had more offensive boards (10) than Al Horford had total boards (9) … Other big stat lines from Wednesday: Chris Paul dropped 38 points, nine assists and three steals on the Warriors; J.J. Hickson scored 23 and LeBron added 12 points and 11 assists in a short night’s work against Minnesota; Marc Gasol posted 25 and 12 boards in Memphis’ win at Detroit; Deron Williams‘ 24 points and seven dimes helped Utah beat Portland; Elton Brand had 26 points and 10 boards in Philly’s loss to Milwaukee; and Derrick Rose put up 26 and seven dimes as Chicago knocked off OKC … In the first half, Joakim Noah bowled over Nenad Krstic, but Krstic was called for the foul. Stopping himself from tearing into the refs, one Thunder announcer said, “The Chicago Bears have a terrible running game. Maybe (Noah) could help.” … Over the past couple days we’ve been fielding your suggestions for Big Baby Davis‘ new nickname — some funny, some just straight cruel — with plans to announce a winner later today. Check DimeMag.com to see which name got the nod … We’re out like Oden …


TOPICS#CARMELO ANTHONY#Chris Paul#DERRICK ROSE#LeBron James
TAGSAl HorfordANDREW BYNUMAntoine WrightCHRIS BOSHDANNY GRANGERDERON WILLIAMSDEVIN HARRISDWYANE WADEElton BrandGLEN DAVISJJ HicksonJOAKIM NOAHJOSE CALDERONJR SMITHKris HumphriesLAMAR ODOMMARC GASOLMICHAEL BEASLEYPAU GASOLSmackTIM DUNCANTrevor Ariza

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