Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The OCTB's Fat From the Fryer: Magic vs. Suns

  • Shaq vs. Dwight: epic battle in the post against the game’s best big man and the game’s biggest, uh, big man. First time in a while that I focused more on an individual matchup vs. the team matchup.
  • You ever used a medicine ball? After shooting or passing with a weighted medicine ball, a regular ball suddenly seems lighter than air. Dwight Howard must have experienced this concept when Shaq left the game and he suddenly found himself guarded by...wait for it...Louis Amundson.
  • Still plenty of boos for both Grant Hill and Shaquille O’Neal. Anyone who thinks that these guys shouldn’t be booed just can’t appreciate how a sports fan takes things to heart. And with affairs of the heart, logic is not a factor.
  • During a timeout, the jumbotron showed Rafer Alston answering the question, “what is your favorite movie.” His answer, “Breakin” and “Breakin II: Electric Boogaloo!”
  • Tyronn Lue’s new role: world’s ugliest cheerleader.
  • Robin Lopez = Sideshow Bob
  • Another technical foul called on Dwight…this is beginning to be a habit and I hate to see it. He is already in double-digit techs for the season and if he keeps this up, he will start to look more and more like Tim Duncan, but not in the “four rings and great glasswork” way.
  • Shaq actually flopped! Shaq!! Is there another player in the NBA besides Dwight Howard who could have made Shaq even consider flopping? Shaq flopping is as strange a site as seeing me without the Fries On The Side!
  • The Magic were a mess with the turnovers, they kept pushing too much, rushing their passes, and making dangerous passes. The Suns looked like an NFL secondary.
  • I was relieved to finally have a team visit the O-Rena who, despite having some serious star power, didn’t have much of a vocal following in the audience like we’ve seen lately with Detroit, Boston, and Cleveland.
  • Both Dwight Howard and Shaq received technical fouls for arguing fouls drawn by the other. No further proof is needed that the two players were “super”-hyped (see what I did there?) for this matchup.
  • From the “Jump In the Fryer If You’ve Heard This Before” Department: In the fourth quarter, when Shaq was called for a technical for arguing a foul called on Steve Nash, Rashard Lewis shot the technical free throw. Then Dwight stepped to the line to take his two free throws. After making the first one, the ref gave the ball to Steve Nash and the Suns headed up the court! All the Magic players and the entire audience was alarmed, saying “he gets two shots!” I was pleased to see that the Magic players had the presence of mind to head back up the court on defense while they protested. Obviously the ref made a mistake but it says right here that Steve Nash was pretty sneaky to take advantage of it like he did. There should have been a delay of game warning given. I don’t care if it was the refs fault. Kudos to Howard for hitting both free throws despite the interruption.
After the game, I went to the visiting locker room. I was able to get a quick moment with Grant Hill. Here are two questions and two answers from The Ankle. The first question is one that another media member asked, but I thought it was worth sharing, because it dispells stories of Hill and Shaq coming back as owners. The second question was asked by the OCTB himself.

Question: “Do you see yourself being involved with this team (the Magic) down the line at some point.”
Grant Hill: “Being involved? Nah…I’ll be a fan when I’m done playing. I’ll be involved as a fan.”

Question: “This is your second game back and there was still a negative reaction from the crowd. Did that affect your game?”
Grant Hill: “Nah, nah, I just played bad. I’ve played bad all year at the four position. So...uh, nah, I came out…played a good first quarter but just didn’t get into a good rhythm there. That’s just part of the game.”

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