It’s not you, it’s me- As you know by now, last nights’ Rockets-Lakers game was bumped
from ESPN’s broadcast because no one wants to watch the Lakers without Mamba for what ended up being an exciting game between Phoenix and Minnesota. What you may not know is that the NBA made it up to Rockets’ fans in a big way, by bumping the Lakers-Bulls match-up on TNT, Monday January 20th, in favor of the Blazers-Rockets.
The Lakers at Bulls game on Jan. 20 will no longer be televised on TNT. Portland at Houston will be televised instead.
— Arash Markazi (@ArashMarkazi) January 2, 2014
I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather watch a game between two contenders in a possible playoff match-up, than another Lakers game. Not to mention, a Rockets game with the always excellent commentary from EJ and the guys. Although, I still prefer C-Webb to Shaq any day of the week (lay off Dwight, big fella).
Insert pun here - This weekend, Lakers’ Mike D’Antoni capped off a career performance by Kendall Marshall the only way he knew how: by “not” comparing the former lottery pick from a basketball factory to the biggest phenomenon in modern sports.
“I’m not making a comparison, but Jeremy Lin did the exact same thing,” D’Antoni said when asked about Marshall going from coughing up four turnovers in six minutes in his Laker debut just two weeks ago to becoming the first Laker player since Kobe Bryant in February 2002 to hit the 20-point, 15-assist plateau. “The first time he went out in Boston it was awful, and I’m thinking, ‘Oh my gosh.’ Then, obviously it happened to him. It does happen to guys.”
Of course, Lin responded to the comparison and other D’Antoni questions yesterday after shootaround.
But after last night’s (5 points, 6 turnover) performance against the Rockets, I think it’s safe to say that “Marshall Madness” is no threat to Linsanity.
Beard Streaking - James Harden is on fire. Last night completed the best three game scoring streak of his career. Over the last three games, Harden has averaged 37.7 points on just under 23 shots, with a 53% FG, 41 3pt and 88% FT. It surpassed his previous top-streak, when he scored 37, 45 and 24 points in his three-game Rockets debut.
Lets not concern ourselves with the fact that this streak came against the likes of Sacramento, New York and the Lakers, all defensive sieves, and concentrate on the positives: this hot streak also coincided with the first three game stretch of the season where Harden has shot over 40% from three. It might be that he really is just streaking and the distance-shooting will cool off, or maybe this is James finally getting healthy and regressing back towards the mean. I don’t think Harden will finish the season shooting such a low percentage of his 3′s, so we’ll see Friday in Atlanta if this is just a streak or, perhaps, a sign of things to come.
Happy Birthday TJ - On this day 23 years ago, Terrence Jones was born. He has grown into an athletic freak and has been the pleasant surprise of this year’s Rockets. And he just may end up being the link between a good team and a true title contender. Make sure you send him your best wishes. Also, his birthday reminds me of one of my favorite songs from back in the day (90′s kids will remember)