Andre Iguodala made two clutch free throws. Both Omer Asik and Al Horford missed them (so did Ray Allen, but his didn’t end up costing his team). Each of them had been sitting on their respective team’s bench a week ago, Asik because he’s a backup and Horford because he’s been hurt for months. Congratulations to Iguodala and Philadelphia. Any team with a fight song that has the lyrics, “one, two, three, four, five, SIXERS! Ten, nine, eight, 76ers!” has my support. But not against the Celtics.
I witnessed an earlier 76er beatdown of the Celtics this year. I’m not thrilled to face them. But it’s better than facing Derrick Rose.
It’s impossible not to feel for guys like Asik; or the 49ers, Kyle Williams–guys who don’t play a lot, pushed into a big moment and try to make a big play, and end up magnified in the losing end. Williams received death threats for his fumbles against the NY Giants. So far, twitter seems to be blaming CJ Watson more for passing the ball to a 45% free-throw shooter. But it sucks for these guys. Give them more opportunities and they’d make some of these; give the stars more opportunities, and they miss big free throws too (like 90% Ray Allen tonight).
It’s much more fun to blame Carmelo. He never seems to care about the game beyond his own stats and shots (many of which are quite impressive). Bradford Doolittle claims he’s getting criticized for saying Carmelo isn’t a guy who can get the Knicks far in the playoffs. But, obviously, he’s totally right. And the TNT announcers are totally wrong. Why does everyone on tv love Carmelo? Paul Shirley said it best on twitter–“Problem: 90% of the people watching the Knicks see that Carmelo Anthony makes the team worse. Only 40% of NBA GMs see the same thing.”
Closing thoughts–Nick Van Exel and Jerry Stackhouse on the Hawks bench, T-Mac and Dampier on the floor, J-Smoove leading the charge, Al Horford and Jeff Teague playing tons of exciting minutes, great goggles from Kirk Heinrich, and a classy coach? Bring back the Hawks next year. I like the ATL unis, too. This team is retro through and through.