Big Day in the Desert

It’s pretty rare that you can make the worst trade of the year and lose the best game of the year in the worst possible way all in the same day. Kudos, Phoenix.

First off, the game.

Unreal.

Picked up watching this one at half time and boy I’m glad I did. Hands down the best game of the first half of the season and there hasn’t been a close second.

Chris Paul played kid’s games with whoever was guarding him and stole everything that wasn’t nailed down. Steve Nash floated finger rolls at will and stuck dagger threes. Peja was water and hit the biggest shot since co-European Hedo Turkoglu drilled that 40-foot turnaround vs. Boston. Amare shut down DWest for the entire 4th Quarter. DWest got tired off being shut down and started beasting in the OTs. Boris Diaw was buttery croissant soft. Shaq ate a lot of free food in the luxury box. Matrix smiled somewhere. Byron Scott gave small ball a new name by going CP3/Bobby Jax/Pargo/Peja/DWest (?!?!!??!) the entire overtime. D’Antoni added 15 gray hairs to his pilot mustache.

Not sure if I would have preferred a 3rd OT or that walk-off-fadaway-get-tackled-by-current-MVP sequence by Peja. Either way, Nash, D’Antoni and company aren’t even mad…that’s amazing.

Second off, the trade.

Shaq & Stevie Kerr
(Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

Okay, the trade wasn’t really as bad as it might seem.

Marion had to go…that much was clear. And the Suns have been trying to get out of that Marcus Banks contract since about five minutes after they signed it.

Could they have gotten a big guy better than Shaq? Maybe.

But even when Diesel isn’t playing particularly well — i.e., most of the time — he’s still creating space, demanding double teams and changing the game entirely. It will give Nash space to dribble around like he does, Raja/Leandro/etc. even more open threes and, most importantly, let Amare move to PF, from which he can be an even bigger beast than he already is. Just watch as STAT catches more lobs, gets more offensive boards and doesn’t get abused nightly by Duncan, Yao, Kaman, Bynum, and, hell, even Erick Dampier.

Altogether, those non-tangible upgrades could potentially have a larger impact than Marion’s solid perimeter defense and the 20/10 his puts in the box score nightly.

All this, of course, hinges on The Big Albatross being healthy. And even if he is healthy, that contract is still pretty tough to swallow. $20 million next year and $20 million the one after that — when he’ll be 38.

But whatever. I’m not paying.

So even if it’s weird that a team that’s been selling its 1st Round picks for three years because it didn’t want to pay rookie salaries is now willing to take on that much in payroll, it’s still a decent gamble by Stevie Kerr. I really didn’t think they had much chance at a ring how they were constituted anyway (especially with the probable Odom/Gasol/Bynum front line in LA LA land), and this gives Phoenix a boom/bust excitement that will be better to watch than Shawn Marion pouting through a 2nd Round Playoff loss while Steve Nash ages another year.

And no matter what happens, the rest of us can at least take solace in the fact that we got the STAT/Matrix crosslegged photo (see next post) into the public record prior to this deal taking place.

Because that, after all, is why we fight.

Pity The Fool

Where showing up with a Clubber Lang-inspired mohawk on the night you get chosen to be an All-Star happens.

Where the best power forward of All-Time getting called for mysterious fouls happens.

Where missing game-tying free-throws with 8.7 seconds left happens.

Where shutting up critics by winning on the road without last year’s Finals MVP happens.

Where amazing (photography) happens.

Amare & Matrix crosslegged

Nawlins Primary

The Florida votes are in, Mayor McCheese and John Edwards are out of the race, and McCain still looks like Vader after he took off the helmet.

I know what you’re thinking: Who gives a Goddamn? No one. But the coaches’ votes for the All Star reserves will be made public tomorrow and I needed a lead-in for this post. So shut up.

So with 0% of the districts reporting so far from New Orleans, BTPH is calling the victory for these fourteen ballas, shot callas and dudes with lots of baby mammas.

East

G – Chauncey
Will start if JKidd is traded West. Or to the 85 Bears.

G – Rip
Best screen reader in the League is quietly shooting above 50% from the field. And now with more threes…at a 46.8% clip.

F – Pierce
KG brings the fire, passion and swagger. Truth brings the points in the clutch.

F – Caron
Tough Juice = The best nickname in the League and the most qualified All Star resume in the East.

C – Bosh
Apologies to Big Z, but there are too many good forwards to include a real center. Plus, of course, this.

WC – Jamison
Second only to Dwight Howard in most double-doubles in the East.

WC – Joe Johnson
You’d think he was better if he didn’t always require two names. Help yourself out with a new moniker, dude. Turbo does not recommend Wolf.

West

G – Chris Paul
Even Stevie Wonder can see that CP3 should be starting at PG. And, yes, those rhymes were freestyle. Turn my headphones up.

G – Nash
No doubt abooot this one either, eh.

F – Booze
I heard his father was a Boozer, too.

F – Dirk
Just cause the numbers are mildly pedestrian for him doesn’t mean they’re not really good.

C – Amare
Could have been Camby. And if you put their skill sets together, you might have the best player in the League. But I’m not much of a scientist and don’t really like either guy individually, so I can’t say I particularly care.

WC – Roy
After a 13-game win streak and going 20-7 since November, it would be more felonious than the JailBlazers to leave dude off the roster.

WC – David West
This last spot could go to like ten other people (Mr. Longoria/GINOBLI!, BDiddy/Cpt. Jack, Josh Howard, Camby, Matrix, Tyson Chandler). But I have to imagine that when a city still recovering from the worst disaster in U.S. history is both trying desperately to reach attendance levels that will keep its team from relocating and also hosting the All Star Game, the other coaches in the League would have to be special types of douchebags to not punch the ticket of a beast PF averaging 20/10 for the best team in West who happens to play in said city. It’s an exhibition and they all deserve it. So do the right thing like Spike.

Dana Barros Wants To Start Talking About Fat, Multiracial Midgets in a Sweaty Bathtub

There really is little better in life than hearing such Confucian wisdom from a former NBA tweener with a girl’s name who hadn’t even entered your stream of consciousness in a half-dozen years. Presumably, you have no idea what I’m talking about.

Don’t worry, baby birds, I’ll feed ya.

And here’s the Dana Barros transcript for those of yall too lazy to sit through a two-minute Semi-Pro trailer:

“When you start talking about bringing people together in a sweaty bathtub — black/white, big/tall, skinny/fat, midget/giant — bringing ’em together in a sweaty bathtub…how much more together can you get than that?”

It’s hard to nitpick with such unadulterated greatness, but given the presence of so many former Celtics and broadcast booth mate “Tommy Point!” Heinsohn, would it really have been that difficult to dig up Bob Cousy solely so we could hear him pronounce Dana’s last name?

And, I’m not a professional movie critic, but I’m pretty sure a Dino Radja sighting would have clinched that Academy Award. Amateurs.

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