Fantasy Basketball

01.11.09 9 years ago
Brandon RoyBrandon Roy, Dime #24

Playing against the Warriors is like being a kid in the driveway (or the playground, or on that telephone-pole plastic crate, etc.), pretending to be your basketball idol. As the Blazers rained a barrage of buckets on Golden State’s stop-and-stare defense last night, Steve Blake was looking like Steve Nash (crossovers, fake passes into layups, automatic threes), Rudy Fernandez looked like a hybrid Drazen/Manu, Nic Batum flashed his Young Grant Hill, LaMarcus Aldridge resembled Young Rasheed (LA was even rocking the headband, the first time we’ve noticed him doing that), and Travis Outlaw looked like what Darius Miles was supposed to be; less real-life version and more The Perfect Score version. As for Brandon Roy — making his return after missing a week or so with a hamstring injury — he kind of low-keyed it, going Steve Smith-style (19 pts, 6 rebs, 5 asts) before flipping through the MJ playbook for a second. In the fourth quarter, B-Roy caught an inbounds alley-oop where he skied like Mike in Game 1 of the ’92 Finals. Portland fans know what play we’re taking about … Don’t leave the Warriors out, though. Corey Maggette (25 pts) had his Juwanna Mann-in-the-first-hour game working; every time you looked up, he was shooting the ball … Can you tell most of the Warriors hate playing with each other? Midway through the fourth, Jamal Crawford found Ronny Turiaf underneath for a dunk that cut Portland’s lead to eight. After the Blazers called timeout, no one so much as looked at Ronny as he ran toward the bench. He ended up yelling “HEY! HEY! HEY!” at everyone and making them give him dap on their way to the huddle. Man, such chemistry with this group, and it’s only gonna get better when Monta Ellis comes back and not only needs his 15-18 shots a game, but will also have some teammates still bitter at him for sinking Golden State’s season before it ever started … A few minutes after the Turiaf play, the Warriors had cut the lead to five. LaMarcus (26 pts, 7 rebs, 5 asts) decided he wanted to be Tim Duncan instead of ‘Sheed, breaking out some joystick moves on Turiaf but air-balling a hook shot. Golden opportunity for the Warriors to make a move, but of course Crawford comes down, doesn’t pass to anybody and jacks a fadeaway, which turns into B-Roy getting an and-one on the other end. That was pretty much your ballgame … The Pistons apparently got caught in a letdown game. After Friday’s emotional down-to-the-wire win over the Nuggets, last night they seemed flat in Utah. Allen Iverson struggled (4-13 FG’s), newly-healthy ‘Sheed was quiet (8 pts), and even Tayshaun Prince and Rodney Stuckey — Detroit’s best players over the last couple weeks — weren’t anything to write home about … The Jazz didn’t have nearly as tough a time as they did in that double-OT thriller earlier this season; this time they picked Detroit apart inside and out in one of those typical games you see when a team is on the last day of a cross-country road trip …

Tracy McGradyTracy McGrady (photo. Marc Morrison)

No joke, the Rockets should really consider doing with T-Mac what Phoenix does with Shaq: sitting out one-half of their back-to-backs, even taking some nights off against sorry opponents here and there. After McGrady scored 26 on the Thunder on Friday, Houston didn’t need him (or Ron Artest) last night with the Knicks in town. After all, why risk Mac getting hurt chasing Wilson Chandler around and avoiding collisions with an out-of-control Baby Diesel Nate Robinson? … Did you see the play where Al Harrington put up a shot in the lane that took an ugly bounce off the glass and somehow ended up (almost) looking like a planned alley-oop for David Lee to finish? Fitting that the only time Harrington picks up an assist is when he’s really trying to shoot … Kevin McHale got ejected in the first quarter of Wolves/Bucks — nothing to be ashamed about; we couldn’t make it through much of the game either — and Minnesota still pulled out the win. We’ll let you draw your own conclusions there … Speaking of checking out, what happened to Gerald Wallace? In 20 minutes of burn against the Wizards, he had zero points on zero shots. No injury involved; Charlotte’s best all-around player was just completely uninvolved in the offense. We know Caron Butler is a solid defender and all, but he’s not that good. Crash just seems mentally out of it … The Bobcats won anyway, sparked by Ray Felton (9 pts, 11 asts) after he came back from injuring his ankle early in the second half when he stepped on a baseline cameraman. It was just like Mateen Cleaves in the 2000 NCAA championship game, only with 1/12th the drama and intrigue … We’re out like McHale …

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