Rolling on the floor, diving, falling on people and the clock runs out! Pretty much a microcosm of the Bobcats season to this point. Writhing around, hoping something goes their way, finally it did as the Bobcats top the Nets in Newark, 85-83. It was ugly, the teams combining for 32 turnovers, it wasn’t exactly a defensive struggle with each team’s FG % around 43. It looked like 2 teams trying to force things and do things exactly right, overcoached, which is pretty much dead on.
Completely a game of runs, you’d see the Bobcats go 11-0 to end the first and start the 2nd. New Jersey 17-2 in the 2nd, followed by 5 points for the Bobcats, capped by a 3 from Boris Diaw to end the half. The third quarter was back and forth and very entertaining. Gerald Wallace went down with a sprained ankle with 8 minutes left in the quarter. Stephanie Ready said he went to the locker room to be X-Rayed, which was negative. Fear not! Crash reentered the game with 1:12 left in the quarter. Possibly as they say that numbness that comes after you initially sprain it but it was enough for him to last the 4th quarter, where he got to the line twice to keep the game within a possession.
It was the free throws that won the game for the ‘Cats. Gerald made 4 in the fourth, Jackson made 2 a few minutes later and DJ Augustin converted his for the final 2 go-ahead points. Stephen Jackson made some timely threes on back to back possessions. The game could have tipped to New Jersey’s side, the Nets were on an 8-0 run. The play previous to Jack’s first three was one of the nastiest dunks of the night, possible of this young season by rookie PF Derrick Favors. Excellent pass from Harris and the dude just elevated. Very nice finish by the young trade-chip, sorry, player.
To focus a bit on Jackson before I leave you thinking he was the hero, he was possibly the entire reason the Bobcats were in the precarious situation to begin with. Stephen (who calls him Stephen other than his mother? ME! That’s who!), was oh-fer ten at the point he made that first three. His only field goals were those 2 on back to back possessions. He only made 2 trips to the line prior to the one he made with 1:35 left in the game. So why, dear box score reader, did he play for 44 minutes? Because the man scored 10 of the Bobcats final 19! 5 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals….can’t really complain after a win.
Nazr Mohammed was plagued by early fouls, 3 in the first 3 minutes and he had to sit. We didn’t see him until the beginning of the 3rd. I’ll just be blunt about it: Brook Lopez doesn’t play defense, doesn’t care to get rebounds or box out. Nazr, in his 14 minutes had 3 offensive rebounds and 12 points. Six of eight shooting, imagine if he didn’t have those 3 quick fouls! So, tempering my affinity, if you commit fouls it means you did something wrong and/or you were out of possition. So Brook was abusing the old timer early but the wiley veteran, for his part, abused him right back, efficiently and hampered by fouls.
But BigCat! You havent mentioned the leading scorer, Boris Diaw! That’s probably because, as someone (sorry, whoever you are) said in the chat, it’s just a tease. Boris was using most of his moves against young Favors and the rest of the Nets’ forwards. it was nice to see him get points seemingly at will but it just wasn’t efficient inspiring or any other ing except for maybe, nothing. I nothing when Boris does well. In fact, playing off a heated debate on one of the boards here, his +/- number for tonight was actually -1…go figure.
I was no where as impressed as I thought I would be, neither of these teams are as good as they can and possibly will be deeper in this season and, barring either team blowing up their roster, next season. I think New Jersey is in good hands and has a good core. Well, tempering things again, they’ll at least be better than last year.
Notes: Horrible interview with Yankees Cy Young winner, CC Sabathia. Not Stephanie Ready’s fault, don’t think the dude has much to say…..Sherron Collins entered the game for some reason, zero points, 2 assists, 4 minutes…..BobcatsPlanet Golden Boy, Derrick Brown did very little, look at the box score…..Watched the game downstairs with my parents who claim they understand the game, Mom says she wants to cry thinking about me missing out on games this year…..The final play might have been pretty ugly for Brook Lopez who had DJ Augustin fall on his extended arm/shoulder area but he was credited with the offensive rebound.