Given it’s still morning and the bosses are more than likely looking over your shoulder waiting for that report you owed them last Thursday, we’re going to run through a rather interesting night in the NBA fast break style.
1. With an injuried Chris Paul in street clothes, the Los Angeles Clippers blindsided the Memphis Grizzlies 99-73. The Clips employed a balanced scoring effort – led by Jamal Crawford and Matt Barnes’ 16 points – to walk away quite easily with a victory improving to 29-9 on the year. On a more serious note, condolences to Rudy Gay who missed the game attending his grandmother’s funeral. Trade rumors don’t seem as important when life puts everything in perspective like it always does.
2. Don’t look now, but the Boston Celtics have awoken. Rajon Rondo’s third triple-double – 17 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists – paced Beantown to a 100-89 victory over Division III opponent, Charlottle. Remember how important Boston fans were saying Avery Bradley was to the overall fluidity of their team? They weren’t lying.
3. Break up the Washington Wizards! The Wiz Kids won their third straight last night beating Orlando 120-91 nearly doubling their win total for the season. It’s no surprise Washington’s resurgence has arrived since the return of point guard John Wall, who left Ish Smith’s ankle battered and bruised following this simple, but effective crossover. Remember kids, look at the opponents chest, not his feet or the ball. Bad things, like this, happen when you do.
4. Despite remaining amongst June’s favorites, serious issues are alive and well in Miami. Utah’s front line – led by Al Jefferson’s 23 points and 11 rebounds – continued to expose the Heat’s nonexistent inside game and forced the defending champs to defend all night. The results were no second chance points, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh (one rebound!) being benched for the fourth quarter and LeBron James playing point center while having Cleveland flashbacks cutting a 20-point lead down to two, ultimately falling short 104-97 (now 1-3 in their last four and 7-9 on the road for the season). The lone bright spot for Miami? Bron’s 32 points Monday night leave him only 18 away from becoming the youngest player ever to reach 20,000 career points.
5. The Hawks were still celebrating the Falcons playoff victory. That’s the only excuse possible for scoring 58 points in Chicago (including five in the second quarter). To add insult to injury, Taj Gibson got himself a poster last night courtesy of Anthony Tolliver. That said, the announcers in this clip were more entertaining and unbearable than the actual game itself.