After the “Misfortune in Portland” on Friday, Derek Anderson predicted the next team wouldn’t be as equipped to beat them from outside. "That's not going to be the norm," Anderson said, and I remember having to bite my tongue at the time, wondering how DA came to that conclusion, considering the next opponents were Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis (who are basically equipped to do little else). Maybe Anderson was counting on Allen’s ankle keeping him out, but the Sonics have proven to be the Anti-Bobcats this year: their seemingly catastrophic injuries turn out to be much more benign, while Charlotte players get muscle strains that morph into leprosy.
Call Allen the Ankle Whisperer: "I just tried to listen to (my ankle), take the shots that I had, and move and not put too much pressure on it," Allen said. He and Lewis combined for 62 points and Earl Watson (more on him later) had a double-double to run our losing streak to five in another Okafor-less, blooper-filled dud (all we were missing was Bob Ueker on the play-by-play). No one else on Seattle did much of anything, which begs the question: why does Lewis seem all but gone in free agency this summer? After Ray Allen, who do the Sonics have all their money tied up in, Nick Collison?
Anyway, the good news is the Cats were in this right up until the end, beautiful friend, the end. They also played grittier than Shaft’s Big Score—Umm, except for Primoz Brezec, who…lost…a…jump…ball…to Earl…Jesus Shuttlesworth, I can’t even type this sentence without stopping in disbelief…Earl Watson!! (There, I did it really fast.) Yep, Watson beat out Brezec on a jump ball, and all the credit in the world should go to commentator Matt Devlin, who took it completely in stride and said something like, “That Watson can really jump,” as if 6-1 guys out-jumping 7-1 guys is entirely normal. Then, about a minute later, in a sort of Suck Encore, Brezec had his shot blocked by Watson. And AGAIN Devlin barely flinched—he deserves an Emmy for that, in my opinion; either the guy was on a jumbo-sized bag of Dramomine or he’s incapable of getting excited. Imagine if he’d been calling the Hindenburg tragedy (“Those blimps can really explode and shower hordes of screaming onlookers with fiery death from above, can’t they, Stephanie?”), no one would even remember it.
Spoiled in the loss was Adam Morrison’s homecoming to the state of Washington. Supposedly there was a lot of build-up in the press for AM’s big reunion, although the only proof of that we saw were two articles that Stephanie showed us, neither of which looked much bigger than coupon clippings. Morrison himself didn’t seem particularly moved either. “I don't miss going to class,” he said before the game, “I don't miss some of the other stuff…I enjoyed my college days and now it's time to move on.” Well, that’s okay, he’s at that age when it’s not cool to be nostalgic—I remember it well. That was also the age when I lived by codes like, “Never drive less than 15 mph over the speed limit,” so I won’t hold it against him.
Allen’s got some new reality show on NBA-TV, and the promo for it has got to be one of the all-time worst. It tries for this dramatic mood music and then Allen goes into this mumbled, rambling monologue that’s so terrible and meaningless, I had no choice but to transcribe it, word-for-incoherent-word:
“Being able to be the great shooter…or the best shooter—one of the best shooters in the world—really there…as much people…they use the, the phrase, ‘the art of shooting’…if you take a picture of anybody’s shot, you can dissect it and say why it works…but what most people don’t see is the work put into that shot. My point, my point is…when I’m shooting I need to, this ball needs to be part of my body when I shoot. Just, just you go up. When you go up you just let it go.”
Is he talking about how to shoot a basketball or how to pass gas? What’s really scary is that someone edited it to sound like that.