Ep. 538: Broken Gold

On today’s show, Skeets and Tas attempt to wrap their heads around the Nuggets-Mavericks game. Did The Matrix really shut down ‘Melo? What is wrong with Chauncey Billups’ shot? And, as always, how badly do those Nuggets need Kenyon Martin back in the line-up? All that, plus a lively discussion about axing divisions, some congratulations to the New Jersey Nets and Rodrique Beaubois’ weak-ass nickname.

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Comments (18)

  1. Mavs won it. I keep hearing this thing about K-Mart and Dirk. Dirk averaged over 30 ppg w/ over 50% shooting. The Nuggs didn’t win last year because of the job K-Mart did. The problem was the rest of the Mavs couldn’t match up. It looks like with Marion, Haywood, Butler, Roddy Buckets, the match up may be better for the Mavs this year. I really just think the Mavs clocked them on the chin last night in the first quarter and the Nuggs never really got their head clear after that. I’m be a little worried about Denver, if JR doesn’t go off last night they lose by 30. Not just that, but just the general ‘lost’ look of their sets. Something isn’t right in nugget land.

  2. I hope one of the start-of-the-show or end-of-the-show quotes sometime later this week will be “Rivalries. My. Anus.” ~Tas Melas

  3. Jazz have taken the division lead all this time while playing (depending on the game) without Kirilenko, Okur, and others. Injuries made the Jazz playoff’s last season a moot point (playing the Lakers without two starters will make your team look artificially bad — especially when that forces you to start Jarron Collins). Nagging injuries affect all teams at this point in the season — will health determine the fate of the top teams again this year? (I wouldn’t want to see a Utah / OKC match-up in the 1st round if Andrei is still out, and Durant can have his way with Korver)

  4. Skeets, while I see where you’re going with the Division Title thing I have to agree with Tas. With the current divisions and the schedule-setup (which is just fine IMO) a Division Title means nothing. Raising a Division Title banner basically means “Yay, we’re better than the other four teams in our division”. If divisions are supposed to be meaningful then NBA should go back to four instead of six divisions.

  5. Tas with some love for Stevie Blake! Kisses from Toronto to LA.

  6. Just the 3 of us? I’m pretty sure Will Smith’s was just the 2 of us. close enough lol

  7. Division banners are nice for the team that wins it — but it doesn’t really mean much, and should not affect playoff seeds as much as it currently does. (Was a different thing when it was just 2 divisions / conf, back in the days) Utah may win their division — despite losing 3 games to the nuggs, 3 to the sonics and 2 to the twolves . . . crazy.

  8. Mavs definitely won it. As a Mavs fan, I watch nearly all of their games, and this was the first time in a long time (going back well into the 13-game winning streak–probably all the way back to the Lakers game in the middle of that streak) that the Mavs have actually come out and played hard with focus for 48 minutes. It’s been extremely frustrating to watch such a talented team play lazy, uninspired ball, trying hard for maybe 24 minutes at best and the rest of the time hoping they can coast. Last night the Mavs showed up for the whole game, and it showed. (Not to say the Nuggets didn’t help them by playing poorly, but some of the credit for that goes to the Mavs hustle, defense, etc.)

    I also agree with Rhett–while the Nuggets definitely need K-Mart for overall toughness, defense, and rebounding (as a team, not just his individual stats), Dirk wasn’t shut down by K-Mart in last year’s playoffs. Dirk averaged 34.4 points, 11.6 rebounds and shot 53.4 percent from the floor in that series. The problem was the other matchups and athleticism, which Dallas has improved this year (whether it’s enough remains to be seen).

    Also, while you’re right that Marion can be up and down, particularly offensively, he has played very good defense all year, and has really been on in March. In the two Denver-Dallas games that Marion has played, Anthony has averaged 13 PPG and shot 8 for 35 (22.9%).

    As for the division thing, a team could definitely win its division and not otherwise be in a playoff spot–7 teams from each conference miss the playoffs, and each division has only 5 teams. No more complicated math than that. It’s just hard to imagine all 5 teams in one division being that bad at once.

  9. funnily, every time the Mavs lose and Dirk gets less than 20 points, all anyone has to talk about it how he got “shut-down.” sorry to say, but the UberMan can shoot over 99% of the people in this league with ease. but people always want to say how he got shut down. ridiculous.

    Melo was 3-16 on FGs, only shot one 3-pointer, got blocked twice, wasnt getting fouled (3 FTA) and wasnt making plays (1 assist). sounds like defense to me. also, on the year, the mavs are #1 in defensive officiency against small forwards (http://www.dallasbasketball.com/fullArchiveColumn.php?id=2776). that also reeks of defense.

    lets hold ourselves to the same standards. Marion shut Melo down. see how easy that was? Dallas clearly imposed its will on Denver.

    and yes “Buckets” is lame. Fish at dallasbasketball.com calls him French Cuffs which is strangely alluring.

  10. Kind of a far stretch, but just say one night KG and Pierce are coming home from a night of clubbin and get in a car accident or something…all of a sudden, the Atlantic division could very well have all 5 teams be non-playoff teams. I know it would be rare for this to happen…but it might not be as far off as one would think.

  11. how bout Efficiency instead of officiency. too much offense on the brain?
    and i agree with you AJR.

    K-Mart gives Denver a fire. one that they are most definitely lacking right now as they struggle without him and Coach Karl. I hope things turn around for both of them before the playoffs.

  12. To everybody who says that Kenyon Martin would have made a difference defensively against Dirk last night, I recommend to look up Dirk’s numbers from last year’s playoffs against Martin, something like 35/10/4 – on average in the series. So, good luck stopping him, Denver.

  13. For Roddy B: “French Cuffs”

    After all, it was Skeets who awarded him best accessory for his… french cuffs with the french flag on them!

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/blog/ball_dont_lie/post/2009-NBA-Draft-Best-and-worst-dressed?urn=nba,173066

  14. Lose divisions… the question is whether or not we keep conferences in their current format.

    The Beer Store truck was back again! (end of the show)

  15. I’d be happy to lose the divisions – but it’s not quite true to say that they are meaningless. Right now, you are scheduled to play every team in your division four times, while the rest of the conference is either four or three. For example, the Mavs will play the rest of the SW division twice at home and twice on the road, but the Denver (regular) season series concluded last night at 2-1 Mavs. I suppose this is to promote rivalries but OKC would seem a more appropriate rival for Dallas than Memphis.

    Anyway, for what it’s worth, I think the Mavs definitely won the game last night. Crisp passing, good rotations and good defence on Carmelo – as much by making him work at both ends of the court. No co-incidence that overall play looks better when Barea plays less…Nuggets definitely looked like a team at the end of a looong road trip.

    The Mavs would be favored over the Nugs in a post season series right now. The Mavs perimeter defence and interior size is much, much better than last year – and, as the other posters said, even with Martin they still couldn’t guard Dirk. What kills the Mavs is a quick point guard (I want nothing at all to do with Utah in the postseason) and nights when they veer from “veteran” into plain “old”.

  16. I really really hope the Cs end up with the same record as the Hawks. That would be awesome. Suck it, Atlanta.

    The day after they beat the Celtics for the fourth time, if you went to their home page they had a celtics logo, then a brook came through and swept it out and it said “4-0, now Boston knows”. Who celebrates a regular season sweep of a team?

  17. Keep divisions. Just switch the tiebreaker order… Make 1st be head to head (may be a split 2-2), then go to Division champ. Pretty simple.

    Mavs won because of the convincing nature of the win. If Mavs won by 3, against Denver on the second night of a back to back without K-Mart, I’d call it a Denver loss.

    Roddy B is fine with me, but the longer Roddy Buckets is definitely campy. French Cuffs is ok when referring to him in an article, but not in a “French Cuffs for 3″ type of announcing way. Maybe we still haven’t heard the best yet…. as long as it is not RB3 I will be happy.

    Beaubois is fun enough to say…

  18. Not only should they axe divisions — they should axe conferences too! Think about it, all these distinctions has very little, if anything, to do with what actually happens on the court. Every year it seems some shitty east team(s) gets into the playoffs and a solid west team gets left out. Why not base all the teams that get into the playoffs on…oh I don’t know…how they actually perform against the other teams? They need to ditch these artificial ways of organizing the teams and let the best 16 clubs get in. And that argument that says “what about the region/division rivalry?” That’s dumb. Teams already play all the teams a large enough amount of the time to maintain any rivarly, assuming people even care about that in the regular season anyway. I mean, one of the most popular and highly regarded rivalries in the NBA (sports really) is between the Lakers and Celtics, and their cities are like 2k miles apart. It’s just dumb to not let the best 16 basketball teams into the NBA playoffs. I’m sick of hearing you guys complain about the Raps when you could be talking about a sick race for the final spot between Memphis, Houston, Toronto, and the Hornets. I include the Hornets because I’m sure CP3 would have rallied that group to play better if they actually had something to try for.

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