Wow, the Pistons came out last night with less energy than a tortoise high on Madame Mary Jane. I was offended ‘cuz I thought they were mimicking & mocking us. Until I realized that they possess that wondrous ability to play basketball while half-asleep, which I thought was a unique New York talent. Okay, okay, we actually won, so I probably shouldn’t use this as a chance to give the Knicks a front-handed insult. So let’s accentuate the positive, ‘cuz the Boys In Blue (& Orange) did have moments where they played really well.
Wilson Chandler missed his second game, er I mean first game, since that game I imagined against the Cavs was just a bad dream. Al Harrington started in his place, and Big Al kept his hot streak going. He was hitting three-
pointers like they were going outta style. Wait, “going out of style?” What kind of dumb expression is that? I feel like in today’s style conscious society, if something’s going out of style we try to instantly get rid of it, not accumulate ‘em. Maybe in the old days if you knew a pair of pants were going out of style you might get a bunch of ‘em before they disappeared forever, but now it’s gotta be the opposite, right? Like what kind of idiot would I be if I put up an Obama “Yes We Can” poster now? Or if I decided that the way to make big money is through internet start-ups and real estate? Actually, real estate might be coming back, but then that’s more like going retro. Like getting me a pair of moon boots now might be kinda fun, but back when that fad was dying we knew they were awful even at the time. Sorry, sorry, I’m rambling. Where was I?
Oh yeah, Al Harrington played great. He even did something more impressive than hit big baskets. There was a period where all the Knicks were doing a great job of passing, just moving that sucker around unselfishly and getting darn easy shots. Al gets the rock, drives to the hoop, and FRICKIN’ PASSES it to someone else for a wide open layup. And then he did it again. It may not seem like much, but not only does he not usually pass when he drives, he rarely even looks up when he penetrates (& the ladies can verify this: nothing worse than a guy who ain’t looking up and paying attention as he penetrates. –Badda-boom! Thank you, we’ll be doing awful jokes here all night long!). Honestly, I remember going up against another team and the opposing team’s broadcasters were joking about how Al will never pass, going “Look, he did it again! That guy is one black hole.” And I don’t think that last sentence was meant to be racist (Badda-bing!).
One other key interesting thing about our starting line-up was that Sergio Rodriguez, aka Spanish Chocolate, was put back in the fridge, moving Tracy McGrady to point guard, and allowing newcomer Bill “Don’t Call Me Sky” Walker to start his first NBA game ever. Coach Mike D’Antoni said it was ‘cuz he felt like the starting line-up didn’t have enough athleticism. And Walker ain’t nuthin’ if not athletic. The dude came through, posting a career high in points for the second game in a row with 22 points. It was one thing to score points the game before since he mostly played against third-stringers in a blow-out, er dream. But to do that against starters in a game that both teams are still theoretically trying to win, well, that’s much more impressive. He could be legit. Plus, he’s so darn psyched to finally be playing that he has genuine excitement and energy out there.
TMac, meanwhile, thrived as point guard, having his best overall game as a Knick (& playing his most minutes: 34). He racked up an impressive eight dimes, scored 21 points on a mere 12 shots (going 2-for-2 from three-point land and 7 of 8 at the line), not to mention 7 rebounds, 3 steals and a block. He also keeps driving to the hoop, drawing attention and contact, silencing early naysayers (like me a bit). Coach D’s already said that TMac’s likely gonna start at point again the next game.
Eddie House came off the bench and I believe his second shot was an airball. House shot well his first game, but since then he’s stunk worse than an unwashed sasquatch farting out a skunk. So the fans let ‘im have it and booed. It was hard to tell if he was annoyed with himself for the miss, or the fans for booing (it seemed to be the former), but that was that: he lit a match and caught on fire. In seven shots he rained in 17 points. –Whose House? Our House.
Lastly, at the beginning of the game we were treated to a wonderful sight: Danilo Gallinari coming out aggressive on offense. He pump-faked, drove to the hoop, and didn’t just act as a connector who swings the ball from one player to another. Yeah, he kinda disappeared later, but it’s nice to see the rumor is false that the kid had a spine-ectomy. Also, while Gallo has been an offensive disappointment/non-entity, I’ve gotta give him some props and say that his defense has been better the last 10 games or so. I’m not saying he’s Bruce Bowen or even that he’s particularly good at D, but he’s one of the few Knicks who does seem to be really focusing on it and trying. He does little things, like maybe initially fronting his player so that they don’t get it easily and the other team has to waste precious seconds before his guy gets the ball. Yeah, he doesn’t stop LeBron or Kevin Durant, but he does make them work a bit to catch the ball, and sometimes the ball even gets instantly swung the other way when they see the star isn’t wide open (this actually was a big reason we managed to hang with the Oklahoma Thunder).
Oh, and David Lee was his usual unstoppable self on offense. He tallied 21 points, 18 rebounds, 8 assists, 3 steals, and a block. With the Pistons’ Ben Wallace unable to play, Lee enabled us to also have a rare win in the battle of the boards, 44-41.
Chandler will likely be back the next game. Perhaps with TMac rounding back into shape and Walker, House & Spanish Chocolate getting more comfy with the team, we might be able to string a few wins together and end this season on a more positive note than things’ve been lately.
Topics: Al Harrington, Bill Walker, Bruce Bowen, Coach Mike D'Antoni, Danilo Gallinari, David Lee, Detroit Pistons, Eddie House, Kevin Durant, LeBron James, Moon Boots, Oklahoma Thunder, Sergio Rodriguez, Spanish Chocolate, Tracy McGrady, Wilson Chandler