Carmelo Burns Brooklyn Yet Again; Paul Pierce Does Something Larry Bird Never Did

By: 12.20.12
Carmelo Anthony

Carmelo Anthony (photo. Zach Wolfe)

They say the only certainties in life are death and taxes. After watching the action Wednesday night, we can add one more: Carmelo is gonna give Brooklyn buckets. Three times Brooklyn and New York have matched up to battle for the rights to Gotham, and all three times, Gerald Wallace has walked off the court looking dazed and confused like he just took nine rounds of Money Mayweather hooks. ‘Melo wasn’t sure he’d even play last night because of an ankle, but said this was too big of a game to miss. Then he went out and poured in 31 points in the Knicks’ 100-86 beatdown of their younger brothers. He scored on the break, in the post, off the bounce, off the pull-up. Basically after three games, it might be time for Avery Johnson and Gerald Wallace to try something new … After a close first half, the Knicks finally started to open their lead up in the third quarter as Tyson Chandler (16 points, 12 rebounds) morphed into goddamn Wilt Chamberlain. The Felton/Chandler connection has dropped more alley-oops than any other duo in the league this year, and they hooked up three times alone in the third frame (Chandler also caught one from Pablo Prigioni). Chandler was doing more yelling and shouting than M.O.P., and on the other end, he was hanging all over the Brooklyn bigs, turning Andray Blatche into… well, Andray Blatche for once. It wasn’t long before “Brooklyn sucks!” chants broke out … At one point in the second quarter, Brooklyn used Reggie Evans to check Jason Kidd, and then Carmelo just a few possessions later. That’s like hitting shuffle on the iPod and going from Kelly Clarkson to Big L. You don’t see that too often … During the middle of the second quarter, Jeff Van Gundy suddenly broke down behind the mic, asking why Billy Crystal was constantly mocking him for doing things like hanging on Alonzo Mourning‘s legs during a skirmish in the late ’90s. The Notorious J.V.G. sounded completely perplexed, saying, “I never made fun of him for being a Clippers fan for years and years.” … Paul George threw up 20 points and 11 boards as Indiana waxed the Jazz by 20 in what was by far their best game of the year. All you had to do was watch their facial expressions to know they were tuned in. George Hill (20 points, five boards, five dimes) had the same look on his face that Mark Wahlberg had in Four Brothers. George was ready to fight anyone who stepped to him, and did punch the ball a few times. And they all were D-ing up like their season was on the line. Utah checked out of this one before the half was even over … So what happens when Danny Granger eventually comes back? Do you trade him? Bring him off the bench? Give all of his shots to Paul George? It’s a harder decision than you think – Granger and George play basically the same spot and want the same role, but one is a 22-year-old while the other is a past-his-prime, injury-riddled former star. Scott Skiles did warn us that George has had a very small sample size as the No. 1 option. It’s almost like catching a girl at the club after you’ve had a couple of drinks and she has on more makeup than Snooki. You gotta wait until the morning to see what she really looks like. Hasty decisions are a no-no … And Isiah Thomas has joined NBA TV as a studio analyst. So who’s getting traded first: Chris Webber, Greg Anthony, Brent Barry or Steve Smith? … Keep reading to hear about the most underrated uniforms in the league …

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Paul Pierce

Paul Pierce, Dime #5

In Boston’s 103-91 W at home against the Cavs, Cleveland was doing an excellent job of leaving Paul Pierce wide open. Yo Cleveland, the Truth might move like an old man at the Y, but in this case, you can’t be giving him that type of room. Pierce (40 points, eight rebounds, five assists) hit his first six triples, and all of them felt like repeats: stepping directly into a pass, wide open, no dribbles, and a hand from a defender that came way too late. By the time the carnage was over near the end of the third quarter, Pierce had become the oldest Celtic to score 40 in a regular season game, Boston led by nearly 20, and everyone chilled from there … If last night’s tag team performance from Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook is at all a sign of things to come, all other contenders in the Western Conference need bomb shelters, bunkers, full-body armor, technology support and anything else they can get their hands on. OKC won their 12th straight game, 100-92 over the Hawks, and the NBA’s best duo was responsible for nearly all of it against Atlanta. The first half belonged to Westbrook, who found the perfect balance between aggressiveness and involving his teammates. Still, he was so hot, the dude even pulled out the Dirk special, the one-legged fadeaway. He’d finish with 27 points and 11 dimes. Then in the second half, Durant went to work – destroying Atlanta from every conceivable angle on his way to 41 points on just 23 shots, as well as 13 boards … In a 10-point beatdown of Milwaukee, the Grizzlies shut the door during an epic third frame. We’re not sure they took a contested shot all quarter – it felt like they scored 154 points off fast-break layups in that one, and Z-Bo (15 points, 17 rebounds) even had a dunk. On the other side, Brandon Jennings (9-for-26 shooting, 26 points) and particularly Monta Ellis (1-for-14, four points) were filming the bloopers for a new instructional shooting video … Are Milwaukee’s blood red uniforms the most underrated in the league? Maybe it’s just because their normal uniforms suck so bad, but every time we see them rocking those joints, we want to hop on eBay and drop a cool $75 on some authentic ones … In other scores from last night: Orlando won yet again, by seven over Washington behind 17 from J.J. Redick; Greg Monroe went berserk (35 points, 10 boards), yet Detroit is so bad they still lost to the Raptors, 97-91; the Rockets rode 33 points on 12 shots from James Harden in a 125-103 undressing of Philadelphia; Phoenix and Shannon Brown (26 points) rolled over the Bobcats by 17; Sacramento got 24 from DeMarcus Cousins in a 131-127 upset of Golden State; and the Clippers won their 11th straight game, by 16 over the Hornets behind 18 points from Blake Griffin … And we posted the video highlights of the Red Bull Midnight Run Finals held in Brooklyn’s Barclays Center. It’s always interesting to see “normal” sized players ball out in a NBA arena. It just looks different. That being said, Baby Shaq could still give some dudes in the league buckets … We’re out like Myck Kabongo.

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