Lakers at home, Curry house-bound. For the Warriors, I expected decent rebounding amid poor shooting.
Expectation Shattered: Golden State will rebound well against the Lakers
No.They. Didn’t. While Fitzgerald and Barnett lamented LA’s length, unease washed over me. Because: The Golden State Warriors are no longer a clown car, stuffed with midgets. The Dubs have size to club the boards. To hear announcers nuzzle yesteryear’s excuse-bosom, well, it prompted the dissonance I’d feel to see a kindergartener breast-feed.
Did Space Jam aliens steal David Lee’s essence? Like a dead postman, he failed to deliver. Lee’s rebounding defines him, but he batted the ball away–as a morbidly obese cat might dismiss a yarn tangle. To use another animal analogy: Florida’s Lee rebounded like an actual gator might. David finished a night that he never started with 0-3, 3 boards, and 5 turnovers.This was the worst DL performance–and not by a little. If I’m piling on it’s because my perception of his value is so far from this.
Was the game an aberration, or can collective length smother individual rebounding prowess? In theory, David Lee and possibly Andris Biedrins are better rebounders than anybody on Los Angeles. But the Lakers as a whole were greater than the sum of whatever Leedrins could pass as mustering.
Expectation Hugged: Curry-less Golden State will shoot poorly
Yes, impoverished shooting indeed. And Stephen Curry is the Warriors Jenga piece. I’m not claiming that his contributions inherently hold top value. I’m saying: The Warriors have nobody to replace this guy. Reggie Williams cannot create offense. In Curry’s absence, Monta Ellis can only create a very narrow kind of offense–I call it “One 360 layup forward, two turnovers back.” Charlie Bell? Perhaps his eventual expiring contract can blossom into offense, but until that day, he’s a blight on the boxscore.
Without Curry, the Warriors lack cohesion. Monta starts driving, chucking and not passing to guards who should be Monta Ellis. The ball rotates with the smoothness of a square wheel, three-pointers develop a magnetic attraction to the rim. In short, the team implodes and Nellie’s ghost envelope’s the evening–even if he’s off somewhere feeding a mai tai to a sea turtle.
Jeremy Lin is not the backup PG answer, but he pumped a pulse on a squad comprised of staggering zombies. When I watched Lin at Open Practice, he couldn’t get around a sleeping drifter. I came away assuming that his NBA career wouldn’t be one–until tonight’s game. Lin has defensive potential, and a good lateral burst. We’ll learn more next time a fat lady’s singing.
Brandan Wright’s quiet competence
Brandan Wright is good. He’s not Jason Richardson, and sometimes Brandan’s shoulder detaches into his back–but he’s a solid NBA player. Wright was king of the sanitation department, flashing a rare combination of athleticism and touch. I mention this here because there’s a distinction between “injury bust” and “bust bust.” So far, Wright is an injury bust at worst. God has given him few NBA minutes, and Nellie bisected that pie sliver. Still, Brandan slogs into Job’s luck with head held high, shoulders drooped low, and hook shot locked in. On Halloween, I salute Sad Dracula.
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