LAKERS OVER WOLVES 117-92
If there is one lasting image I have from my visit to Target Center tonight, it's this:
Please read that again. It is likely that sentence will never be written a second time. Now soak it in. The guy in the picture above did a double-cluth, two-handed dunk in a game against our team. I don't think Coby Carl is allowed to double-clutch dunk in NBA2K8 much less a pick-up game. This is the equivalent of Adam Kennedy hitting 3 home runs in one game.
* UPDATE - Check out the NBA.com full play-by-play page. Scroll to the bottom. This is the exact play according to NBA.com:
Karl Alley Oop Dunk Shot: Made (2 PTS)
Assist: Farmar (3 AST)
Anyways, the Wolves lost tonight 117-92 and, as the old saying goes, the game wasn't that close. Had the Lakers not utilized the daunting lineup of Farmar-Vujacic-Turiaf-Mbenga-Karl out on the floor for a significant portion of tonight's game (approximately 7 minutes), I think the Lakers had the potential to win by 40 points tonight.
I did not enter tonight's game with a lot of hopes for a victory. The Lakers, in an early entry for crime of the century (larceny), acquired Pao Gasol from the Grizzlies for 4 tins of Grizzly chewing tobacco and Kwame Brown. This move not only makes the Lakers an instant contender for best team, it also makes an absolute matchup nightmare for the Wolves. Can you imagine the matchup problems with Bynum back? I actually think Gasol on Jefferson is the tougher matchup because of Gasol's length and defense. However, beyond that position, did you feel comfortable with any of the following matchups for the starters:
Phil Jackson v. Randy Wittman
Fisher v. Telfair
Bryant v. Jaric
Radmonovic v. Turbo
Odom v. Gomes
Even with the Laker's reserves, a bench that is seriously deep in all the key spots, the Wolves just have a tough match up against this particular team. Add in the fact that the Wolves just couldn't get the offense going for any consistent stretch during this game and you have the recipe for a slaughter. There's really not much to add about this game, it was messy for the team on both ends and hard to watch if you're a Wolves fan. On top of sloppy offense, the players failed to hustle to loose balls, which is something that always bothers me, and apparently bothers the 22,120 ESPN readers (see poll on right hand column).
The worry from my perspective, as someone who closely follows this team and goes to all the games, is that the team has had two uninspired performances following one of their better games of the season (albeit a loss, the Celtics game was very entertaining and a pleasure to attend). If these past two games are a "hangover" from that defeat, then the young players have to adopt the short memory strategy that most successful teams and individuals have for both failures and triumphs. Let's hope the break reinspires some of the pups.