Musings from some former inhabitants of the sprawling metropolis that is Prudhomme City

Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Basketball Diary

by B.Daigle

This year has been the best season the NBA has seen since Jordan hung up his hightops. The Western division has been the better half of the NBA for the last few years, but this year was downright ridiculous as far the competitiveness and parody between teams. No one expected the Hornets to be in the playoffs, but they won the Southwest division and came within one game of having the best record in the Western division, but the Lakers and their one-sided trade for Paul Gasol prevailed. I had a regular season ticket package to the Hornets and also saw the first game of the current series against the Spurs at the Hive. It's been a long time since I invested myself emotionally in a professional sports team, but here I am living and dying with the Hornets and it gave me an idea.

My favorite sportswriter is Bill Simmons of Bill has a few formulaic columns and one of my favorites is the running diary of a game. It has been said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and I thought it would be fun to take a stab at it, so here goes!

Here we are live from the Daigle Condo in the Big Easy anxiously awaiting the start of Game 5 between the Spurs & Hornets!

8:45 PM CT - I love a doubleheader during the playoffs because it usually means the viewers of the second game don't have to put up with a pre-game show. I don't need a couple of ex-players, ex-coaches, or irritating Stephen A. Smith to break down a game for me. Thanks, but no thanks.

8:50 - The Hive is all yellow again tonight with free t-shirts being given to every fan. I contemplate going get the free t-shirt I got at Game 1 but that would mean climbing a flight of stairs. I'm not that emotionally invested.

8:52 - Tyson Chandler sets a perfectly legal pick for Chris Paul but a tremendous acting job with the flop by Tony Parker draws the foul. When the Spurs won their first couple of championships I was happy for them because they were a small market team and Tim Duncan seemed like a really nice guy. Since then their two biggest contributions to the culture of the NBA have been the flop and crying to the refs. I loathe both of those things. I also used to like their coach Greg Poppovich, but after he resurectted the disgusting and boring strategy of "Hack-A-Shaq" during the first round against the Phoenix Suns, I saw how desperate he had become. A 4-time NBA champion coach should not have to resurrect such a loathsome strategy. So loathsome, the NBA outlawed the practice in the final two minutes of a game. So yeah, I ain't got no love for the Spurs and I've only given you the 3 of the reasons.

8:56 - "Marvelous" Marv Albets mentions the Hornets were a little late taking the floor for pre-game shoot-around because Byron Scott had them watching a montage of parts of inspirational sports movies like, Remember the Titans, Glory Road, etc. Reggie Miller then mentions Scott told his team they need to treat this game like it's Game 7 and not game 5. Insight like that is why I cannot live without color commentators.

8:57 - Chris Paul scores and the obligatory Ric Flair, "Wooooooh!!!" plays and the crowd (as always) yells, "Wooooooh!" right back. There's a long story behind this and its not that interesting. The fans have taken to doing the "Wooooh!" randomly in the concourse before games and some a**hole never fails to scare the crap out of Melissa and I by yelling it in an ear-piercing tone when we least expect it and I give myself a $7 beer bath.

8:58 - Manu Ginobli flops on a 3-pointer and draws the foul. Manu Ginobli was voted the 6th man of the year. I don't like Ginobli and his hook nose and bald spot and Argentinian DNA. I don't like how he's overrated driving the lane because teams never take his left away. I don't like all the credit he gets for being a great 3-point shooter when he only hits them consistently at home. I don't like how he's the most agregious complainer/whiner I have seen in a foreign player after Dirk Nowitzki. Manu leaves me cold. I want to spit a loogee in his bald spot.

9:00 - I love the T-Mobile commercials with Charles Barkley and Dwayne Wade. This is my favorite one.

9:03 - Craig Sager is the best sideline reporter in any sport on any network, hands down, period. Just Google him and the word "suits". Seriously. I dare you. This is my favorite moment with Craig this year and it happened right here in NOLA.

9:08 - First, we had Coke and Pepsi with lime. Those aren't on the shelves anymore. Now we have light beer with lime already added. Isn't this an admission that these beers don't have flavor and need it added? I'm just saying.

9:10 - The Hornets have missed their last 6 shots. I will now pour boiling water on my face.

9:13 - Good times! Double technical on the Spurs and the Hornets. I am fondly reminded of my years playing junior high basketball and routinely getting "T-ed up" every other game. I'm still hurt I never won the Sportsmanship Award.

9:14 - Bonzi Wells checks in for the Hornets. Byron Scott swears the Hornets had to make the trade for Bonzi during the regular season for the playoffs. I think Bonzi is certifiably crazy and a liability. Then again, I'm not coaching an NBA team. I also think Byron forgets he can call timeouts in the second half.

9:16 - Kurt Thomas of the Spurs always looks pissed off. Maybe he just has bad hemrhoids.

9:18 - Robert Horry (a.k.a. Big Shot Rob) checks in and sets the record for playing in most playoff games. Incidentally, he can also still pass for Will Smith's stunt double.

9:20 - The rookie, Julian Wright, checks in for the Hornets. I will admit I was of the biggest critics of the Hornets drafting Ju-Ju. I was wrong. The lesson as always is that I am an idiot.

9:21 - Hey, hey! Popovich tells 30 year veteran ref, Joey Crawford he's wrong and gets a technical. Apparently, the Spurs and Crawford have a history. Crawford is probably just tired of every Spur player coming over to talk after every call. Nobody likes a whiner.

9:22 - End of the first quarter and I've only had one beer. Its always a good sign if I'm not drinking heavily before the half.

9:24 - Tim Duncan is 0-6 shooting. I daydream about what I would say if I was a color man after hearing this stat from Marv. Maybe he's still feeling the effects of that flu, Marv!
I know I would be a great color man.

9:25 - Looky here!! The 10th commercial for Miller Chill. Ladies and gentlemen, its horse urine with lime and salt!!!

9:33 - Melissa complains that Duncan is like a robot and shows no emotion. Now maybe someone will listen to me that Tim Duncan is really a Terminator sent from the future to create an NBA dynasty everyone slowly learns to hate.

9:36 - Well it took all 5 players on the Spurs to touch him on the way to the basket but Chris Paul finally managed to draw a foul. The's FANtastic!

9:40 - TNT shows all the famous people in attendance at the game tonight from Dwayne Wade to that guy who got kicked off....I mean voluntarily left Grey's Anatomy. Wait...famous people in New Orleans?? Shouldn't you be in the Lower 9th Ward posing for pictures and not at some silly basketball game? Oh yeah and donate some money from you charity while you're at it. Can you tell I've had it with NOLA whoring itself out in the name of recovery but at the expense of the citizens and their needs?

9:46 - David West has 20 of the Hornets 36 points. Don't look now but he may be on his way to a career night.

9:50 - Halftime and Peja gives what I think is an interview to Craig Sager, but I think he was using his bad English. Chris Paul said Peja has a good English and a bad English and he uses them at will. I'm pretty sure Craig got the bad English.

Now, Simmons would have given you the second half, but he's a professional and I am not. My superstition kicked in and I thought the note taking was hurting us and so I quit. Just like that the Hornets had their normal great 3rd quarter at home and went on to the win the game with a career night from David West and blew the Spurs out of the water like I used to beat Byron at Battleship.

Unfortunately, West and Chandler both ended up leaving the game with injuries and we went on to lose Game 6. Say a novena for my Hornets to win Game 7 back in New Orleans and advance to the Western Conference finals. If that happens we will probably play the Lakers and get to hear about how Chris Paul came in second to Kobe Bryant in MVP voting for 7 games. Good Times!!!

Hope you enjoyed the diary and if we make it to the conference finals, I may do another.

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