Last night was one of those evenings where we really wished we didn’t cover the NBA for a living. Who set up this schedule? When you combine a bunch of really bad teams with some good teams that don’t have anything to play for, ugly basketball ensues and brain cells die. Not all was lost though. The Spurs might have a few old guys, but they can still get it done, and last night San Antonio wrapped up the West’s No. 1 seed with a 124-89 destruction of the Blazers. Tim Duncan had 18 and the versatile Spurs again made sure everyone fed on Portland’s remains … Immediately, the Spurs jumped out, holding the Blazers to 18 points in the first quarter on 27 percent shooting. Later, as the buzzer sounded on the first half, Raymond Felton fouled Gary Neal as the Spur was shooting a 35-footer on the run. From there, the outcome was never in question … Meanwhile in the nation’s capital, Washington blew out Charlotte by nearly 30 in the battle of ping-pong balls. After one quarter, John Wall (16 points, 14 assists) was doing basically whatever he wanted, nearly ringing up what felt like a triple-double in 12 minutes with eight points, six dimes and four boards by the time he took a rest. By the half, he had 12 and nine and then before going into the locker room, he gave an interview where he basically said something to the tune of: At the beginning of the game, we weren’t respecting them. It was too close so I think we weren’t really playing hard. Then we started respecting them and began blowing them out. It’s pretty sad that a statement like that is actually true … Jan Vesely can’t shoot, but he had eight in the first quarter and finished with 16. He’s kind of like Andray Blatche… except he’s in shape, plays hard, doesn’t shoot 20-foot fadeaways and has a girl who hands out love on national TV … Quick. Name us five guys crazier than Metta World Peace. Stephen Jackson? Nic Cage? DMX at any point in the last decade? Tyrus Thomas has to be in the conversation, especially after he tried to start Wrestlemania all over again with his 68-year-old coach (who definitely also has an extra crazy gene). Early last night, Thomas couldn’t allow QB’s Finest to out-stage him with World Peace’s headhunting elbow from Sunday afternoon. So Thomas went and threw a flying elbow at James Singleton, getting called for a flagrant 2 and an ejection. Who remembers when this cat was almost the No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft? … The Grizzlies rode six players in double figures to a win over Kyrie Irving (25 points) and Cleveland, 109-101. They are now just a half of a game behind the Clippers for homecourt advantage in the first round … DeMar DeRozan was ejected for getting his Roger Clemens on and throwing a fastball after he didn’t agree with a call, and we couldn’t blame him. On a night where Milwaukee was playing for their playoff lives, there sure wasn’t a lot of intensity to be had. Milwaukee won 92-86, but with Philly winning, they were still eliminated. Brandon Jennings had 25 in a lost cause … Keep reading to hear how Paul George gave us a glimpse of the future …
The Pacers starters last night were A.J. Price, Paul George, Dahntay Jones, David West and Jeff Pendergraph. Shout out to the final week of the regular season. And yet they STILL won, courtesy of a Detroit team that chases its own tail half the time. Indiana pulled it out, 103-97 as Paul George had 27 points and 10 boards. In a sleepy Fieldhouse where some of the Pacer starters weren’t the only ones taking the night off, their future star was blowing up. George secured the win with two veteran plays: hitting all his free throws and grabbing the clinching rebound for his eighth 20-point game of the year. We’re assuming he at least doubles that next year. In the fourth quarter, he also pulled off a one-eyed dunk. He caught the ball 30 feet from the hoop, feigned like someone had hit his eye, and when Austin Daye stood up straight, he blew by him for a ferocious one-handed tomahawk. The ol’ fake eye injury trick. Works every time. The whole thing – the dunk, the injury – looked so Vince Carter-like that it was scary … For everything he’s improved on this year as one of the lone bright spots in Detroit, Greg Monroe (18 points, 12 rebounds) had a terrible fast break turnover and missed three of four freebies in the final minute of a one-point game. His turnover on the break came because he hit a fat guy in the eighth row with a chest past. Then to top it off, he gave up an offensive rebound to Tyler Hansbrough, who made both free throws to push the Indiana lead out to three … Being that this was the final Nets game in Jersey before the move to Brooklyn next year, you’d think Prokhorov‘s boys would be out for blood. Instead, they fell behind by 13 after one to the Sixers, and ended up bowing out weakly, 105-87. The final shot in the franchise’s history in Jersey was a 20-foot air ball from Johan Petro. Nice … Now that the New Jersey Nets will no longer technically exist soon, let’s reminisce. We’re going to miss Jamie Feick. Remember him? Fred Kerber of the New York Post tweeted this: #Nets Stephon Marbury once took 36 shots. “What you want me to do, pass the ball to Jamie Feick?” Feick was 2 feet away … Deron Williams wasn’t out there, but Jordan Williams was suited up to carry on their namesake. Are we sure the two aren’t related? They look eerily similar, right down to the headband and annoying chinstrap … Now everyone on here who talks a big game gets the chance to back it up. The NBA D-League just announced they will be holding one-day tryouts in Los Angeles (May 12, Next Level Sports Complex), Chicago (June 2, Moody Bible Institute), New York (June 16, Basketball City) and Houston (June 17, Legends Sports Complex) for anyone who can meet the league’s requirements. You’ll play full-court games in front of scouts and execs, and have the chance to actually get drafted into the league. Of the players who participated in last year’s tryouts, 18 players were actually selected, and one – Dennis Horner – even earned NBA call-ups. You just gotta pay $150. Who is willing to pony up? … And James Harden is being listed as day-to-day right now by OKC. He underwent tests yesterday and is expected to go through more today. In other words, no one has a clue what’ll happen … We’re out like Deion Sanders live tweeting a domestic assault.
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