There I was: settled in for a long evening of basketball-related entertainment, when all of a sudden my Twitter and my Tumblr and my Facebooks erupted alerting me to not only the announcement of the new Springsteen album in March, but that the first single was already here. And there. And everywhere for my listening (and re-listening and re-listening enjoyment). The night was shot. Eleven games that I suddenly realized I was going to watch with only one eye. Half a heart. I stayed up late, cats and kittens. Doing my best. If I failed you, I apologize. This is Bruce, after all. And some things are just more important than the fact that anyone who owned a Nugget or a Sixer on their fantasy team made out like bandits last night. Anyway, back to hoops.
If D.C. has any strengths – and I’m not necessarily saying they do, so don’t go quoting me – it’s that you never know which sloppy player is going to make a name for himself on any given night. Someone will. And it will be sloppy … unless you’re talking about John Wall on Wednesday (or any day this week, really), who was not sloppy at all. So never mind that. I just disproved myself. And now you see why I didn’t want you to go quotin’ me. Now you have to go back and re-quote me about not wanting to be quoted. Do you see the damage you’ve done? Wall had 25/7/8. He missed 2/3 of his shots (again), but got to the line and sank 13 of his 14 freefrows. That’s accountability, man. He’s like Casey At the Bat if Casey hadn’t totally choked. The best news is that he’s strung a couple of these monster games together and has given his owners reason to chill. Never underestimate chilling. Here are some other tidbits to nibble from Wednesday night’s lineup.
Jeff Foster – Out for two weeks, which has no fantasy implications by itself, but when you compare Tyler Hansbrough‘s Foster-less rebounding numbers (53 in seven games) to his Foster-full ones (28 in six games), it would suggest that Psycho-T’s that much more valuable.
Vince Carter – His left foot is sprained enough that he’s heading back to Dallas to meet with the team physician. I was always under the impression the team physician traveled with the team. What’s the difference between a Dallas physician who sees all the members of a local sports franchise and the team physician? I like to think that any wealthy businesses, such as an NBA franchise, has their own everything following them around. I also like thinking that Odom and Misrilou won’t stop messing with him on the team plane.
Trevor Ariza – Returned after a 16-day furlough and helped put the Hornets on his back, scoring 18 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists, 4 steals and a block. Ariza’s back is too small to fit whole teams on, so New Orleans still lost to the Grizzlies.
Hedo Turkoglu – Out last night with back spasms. Quentin Richardson filled in for Turk ending with 2/3/0, with 2 steals in his place. Just between you and me and the guy reading this over your shoulder, Q didn’t really sufficiently fill in for Turk.
Von Wafer – Scored 15 points last night, which included a trio of treys. He’s dropped an average of 14 points on .579 shooting in his last two. If you think he continues shooting 58 percent from the floor, by all means, pick him up. The rest of us will be over here whispering about your poor decision-making skills.
Amir Johnson – Another five fouls. He’s had at least five fouls in five of his last seven games and leads the league in PFs with 65. It’s a problem that Mr. 8.5/8/1.5 can’t stay in games longer, because if he could amass 36 minutes per, he’d be good for 11/10.5/2 and 2 stl+blk per game.
Ray Allen – What’s cooler than being cool? 7-of-23 in his last three games! 19 total points over that time.
Nikola Vucevic – Started in place of Spencer Hawes and was less than hawesome. Probably won’t get another chance to be so hawesome in the near future.
Evan Turner – Earned his second double-double of the season (20/11, with a pair of steals). He only had two double-doubles last season, and they came in games seven and 12. This season, he earned his dub-dubs in games nine and 13. By that rationale, he’s actually doing worse this year than last. Luckily, that rationale isn’t rational.
Andre Miller – 28/8/10, with 3 threes. Fun fact! Andre Miller’s come off the bench and double-doubled twice this season. Ricky Rubio‘s the only other player to come off the bench, score 10+ points and dish 10+ assists. He did it three times. Jrue story.
Jan Vesely – 6/3, with a steal and a block in 19 minutes. He’s fun.
Jared Dudley – “Dud” is right! Dude’s been dud-ly for much of this young season. He’s certainly seen better days. Few of them have come lately however. His season averages are all hovering near the averages from last season, except he’s averaging six additional minutes per game now. His per minute averages are down, his team’s losing, and Markieff Morris has the sniffles. Ugh. Let’s just skip ahead to 2013 because 2012 is lost. Ronnie Price started in Dudley’s place, but I wouldn’t drop ‘n’ grab accordingly. Dudley will be back in the starting lineup soon enough.
Markieff Morris – Startin’, too. In place of Channing Frye. Unfortunately he came into the game sick and left it in the same condition seven minutes later. Channing Frye took his place. Or re-took his old place, as the case may be.
Carmelo Anthony – 5-for-22 from the floor, career-low .425 on the season. See: Allen, Ray. About five inches up.
Nicolas Batum – Got popped in the eye and made an early exit. Monta Ellis called him up after the game and told him that things can only get better from here.
Gerald Wallace – He’s shot 17-for-46 (.370) from the floor in his last four. I don’t want to be a pest, Mr. Wallace, and I know your team is playing well and you’re still filling up the box score, but you’re shooting … and, again, I don’t want to be a pest, but– “Then don’t be a pest.” –Gerald Wallace, keepin’ it simple
Al Horford – Joe Johnson and Josh Smith combined for 41/19/8, with 4 stl, 4 blk and 4 3ptm against Portland. #WhoNeedsHorford? There. I started that hashtag so you won’t have to. (Ed. Note: Adam doesn’t know what he’s saying. Of course Atlanta needs Al Horford and any suggestion to the contrary is likely the result of irrationality brought about by Springsteen Album Announcement Excitement.
Tyreke Evans – 7-for-33 (.212) in his last three. So that’s a problem. Don’t panic until February.
Eddy Curry – May make an appearance in a uniform tonight. The uniform will almost certainly have Cinnabon icing somewhere on it.
Follow me on Twitter, where for the next six weeks, I will likely be talking more about Springsteen than basketball (which is more likely than not, NOT a selling point for most of you).