Thursday, November 15, 2007

Philadelphia 2 and Out

New Orleans 95 | Philadelphia 76

Before we begin recounting last night's glorious victory, I want to give the team props for hanging in there against New Jersey on Monday (Nov. 12) and pulling out the big win. CP3 got a lot of the credit (27 points, 6, assists, 3 steals), especially since he sunk the game winning bucket driving into the lane against the whole Net's defense with something like 2 seconds to go. Pretty spectacular. But really, the whole team deserves credit for fighting it out: all of the starters were in double figures in scoring with Peja dropping 4 threes. Of course, let's not overlook the Chef's accomplishments (my friend, Curry, insists that we give CP3 another nickname. Why? Because he serves up the best dishes in town. I can hear the moans now). CP3 leads the league in assists while averages 3 steals and just under 19 points a game. He's even ranked first in the Yahoo! fantasy leagues right now. What's more is he is becoming a premier point guard. He's beginning to pull up and take shots when he doesn't like the game's tempo (like Nash), he barks at his players when he has to shoot (despite making 51% of his shots) because they weren't open for passes, and his clutch factor is off the charts (if you saw the end of the Net's game, you know what I mean). If Agent Zero is curious why everyone is hounding him for not being a good teammate, he need only look to the Crescent City. This is how you make players around you better at the point: you shoot only when you can't dish (or if your fellow players are shooting low percentages), you hold your teammates to high standards, and you never mail in a single game. Period.

That having been said, the Hornets did a number on the 76ers for the second time this season. Our preacher at the start of the game asked the men on the court remember that the sport being played was basketball--not wrestling, boxing, debate, or Jai Alai. Ok, I threw that last one in for kicks, but he did say the first three. Regardless, it seems as though Philadelphia did not get the memo. Although, despite the win, our boys played pretty unevenly; leading by as much as 24 and then losing the lead in the third quarter. Byron felt the need to give almost all of Melvin Ely's time off the bench to Uncle Bowen. That didn't help (although he did make a miraculous steal at one point only then to launch it thirty feet in the air towards the scorers table... or the second row in the crowd... whoever was more open, I suppose). At any rate, strong defense held Andre Iguodala to 5 points on 2-15 shooting, and Mo Pete stepped up for the first time, dropping 27 points, including 6 threes. Actually, just before the end of the first quarter, he and Philadelphia were tied with 18 points apiece. With that win, we are now 7-2 and heading to Memphis. Fantastic.

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