Starting 5: LA (and CP3) Getting Heated, Love & DWill Go Off, And Mavs Get Their Rings

starting_5_copyEvery morning, we’ll give you five things from the night before in the NBA to start your day.

1:  The Battle of Los Angeles

That’s more than just the last great Rage Against The Machine album now.

I can’t get the image of seeing “World Peace” pushing and shoving in the middle of a scrum out of my head.  It was that kind of night last night as the Clippers and Lakers engaged in a hard-fought, 96-91 Lakers win.  

Metta sat on Blake Griffin.  Josh McRoberts got tossed for mixing it up with Reggie Evans.  Pau Gasol patted Chris Paul on the head and bumped him as he left the floor (more on that later).  And I’m pretty sure Brick killed a guy. 

Pau Gasol kept the Lakers in it until Kobe took over in the 4th.  Andrew Goudelak outscored Chris Paul 14-4. And LA got itself a couple of good basketball teams that don’t seem to like each other.  And that’s a win for all fans in Los Angeles.

2:  Love earning his money

Kevin Love got that huge extension yesterday.  The Internet exploded in debate with one side arguing that when a 23 year-old phenom like Love wants to stay in a place like Minnesota, you lock him up for as long as possible.  The other side argued that Love is still in Minnesota and he will be for three more years… and no matter how pissed he is now, he very well could change his tune in three years if the team is significantly better.


Kevin Love went out last night and had himself a night.  31 points, 10 rebounds, and a 15 point win on Dallas’ home floor on the night they got their rings.  Out goes Dallas’ seven-game home winning streak.  

Not that you’d expect any let down from Love, but he sort of proved both sides right with the performance.  One one hand, he’s pissed and trying to show David Kahn what he could be missing in three years.  On the other, he’s only going to lead this team to more wins, which will probably make him want to stay. 

On the third hand, I think its time to put this topic to rest now that this little cherry topped the sundae.


Jason Terry hits Brandon Wright with the lob.  Dirk, commenting from the sideline, calmly analyzes the situation.


Blake Griffin’s double pump dunk

The Dallas Mavericks ring ceremony

4: Line of the Night:  Deron Williams: 34 points, 11 assists

DWill went OFF to earn the Nets a win over the Philadelphia 76ers.  Here’s a perfectly worded take.

A promising sign in a Jekyll-and-Hyde season that Jekyll came out against one of the better teams in the Eastern Conference. D-Will took over offensively when needed throughout the game, attacked the lane, got buckets at the rim, and set up teammates for good shots. The game-tying layup on Thaddeus Young was sublime; the offensive takeover in overtime close to flawless. Not many players can make that happen. Absolutely looked like the best point guard in the game, if only for the evening. Oh, and that poster on Elton Brand wasn’t bad, either.

5:  You can quote me on that

”He touched the top of my head, and I didn’t like that.  You know what I mean. I don’t know if Pau’s got kids, but don’t touch my head like I’m one of your kids. I don’t know what his intentions were, like, `I’ll treat him like little Chris.’ I don’t know if he’s got kids, but I’m not one of them.”

– Chris Paul on being patted on the head by Pau Gasol

”I’m sorry he felt that way.  I do that all the time with my teammates. Nothing mean about it.”

– Gasol, in response 

”Our new team motto is, `I love it,’.  It started off sarcastic, but now we use it for everything. I had five turnovers, but I love it.”

– Deron Williams

”I love it!!”

– several teammates, in response