1. Geez, Thanks Coach
With under a second remaining in yesterdays game between the Wizards and the Warriors, Don Nelson picked up a technical foul after a questionable call gave Gilbert Arenas a pair of free throws with Washington down by two. But thanks to Nellies tech, Agent 0 went to the line and drained three consecutive freebies with 0.1 seconds remaining on the clock. Arenas was 12 for 12 from the free throw line as he went off for 32 points, six assists and five rebounds in the home win. By sinking the clutch free throws, Arenas has joined a pretty elite club. In the last two seasons only three players have hit game-winning free throws in the final second of play (Channing Frye, Darrell Armstrong and Zach Randolph). However, Arenas became the first player since Karl Malone against the Suns in 1999 to give his team a one point victory on three free throws with under a second remaining in the game.
2. Garnett Seeing Green
As unbelievable as it may sound, the Boston Celtics are NOT the worst team in the NBA. The combination of a Boston four game winning streak and a Memphis four game losing streak has given the Celtics a three game cushion over the grisly Grizzlies. Yesterday, the Cs beat the Timberwolves in a double overtime marathon despite another big day from the Big Ticket. Kevin Garnett seems to like playing Boston as he picked up his second triple-double of the season against the men in green. But the last time these two hooked up, Boston fell to KG and crew for their 18th consecutive loss. Seems like Garnett could use a little help in Minny, but, yet again, the entire weight of a franchise is riding completely on his shoulders. You dont think Allen Iverson, Ben Gordon or Ray Allen could have helped to distribute the burden; do you?
3. Altitude Agrees With The Answer
He hasnt even been in Denver for a year yet but Allen Iverson has already said that he wants to remain a Nugget for the remainder of his career. Sounds familiar, didnt he say the same thing in Philadelphia? But things change and you cant blame AI for wanting to leave the Sixers, considering their current condition. And Iverson is probably truthful about staying in Denver. The Nuggets have a bright future with Iverson and Carmelo Anthony leading the way. When Iverson was traded to the Nuggets, the duo was ranked number one and two in scoring; now they are first and fifth with AIs numbers dropping a bit. But that was expected; what wasnt expected was that the Nuggets would be clinging to the eighth playoff spot with only 25 games left in the season.
Sundays Player of the Day: Kevin Garnett @ Boston 51 min, 33 pts (FG: 14-28, 3FG: 1-1, FT: 4-5), 13 reb, 10 ast, 2 stl, 3 blk
Mondays Game to Watch: Houston (36-23) @ Cleveland (34-25) Hes back and hes not hard to spot. The 7-6 Yao Ming is expected to hit the court for the first time in 32 games after breaking his right leg on December 23. Tracy McGrady is going to have to get use to sharing the load again after making a late MVP push as he carried the Rockets during Yaos absence. But before Houston can celebrate the return of Yao, they will have to pick up a win in Cleveland where the Cavs are 22-8 this season. And if T-Mac has been hot of late, then LeBron James has been scorching. James has scored between 29 and 39 points in each of his last seven games. This could become a scoring duel between two of the games most explosive superstars.
Buzzer Beater: Hitting the century mark has typically been the benchmark of a good offensive game for NBA teams. But what makes a game great is when two players combine for a hundred. Thats what Ben Gordon (48 points) and Michael Redd (52 points) did during the Bulls 126-121 victory over the Bucks on Sunday. In the last 30 years, only eight games have seen a duo combine for 100 points and this is the first time since the 1989-90 season that the game didnt involve Kobe Bryant or Tracy McGrady. For comparison sake, the feat is one of the rarest in all of sports. In the same 30 year span there have been eight perfect games thrown in the MLB, seven 500-yard passing games in the NFL, and five baseball games with four homeruns from a single player.