Mavs pounded into submission in Golden State …
The streak had to end sometime. But who could have guessed it would end like this?
Two teams going in opposite directions the day before, reversed ground Monday night as Golden State humbled the Mavericks 117-100 in confounding fashion.
The Mavs (52-10) had their franchise-record winning streak end at 17 games, losing for only the third time since Dec. 13 after blowing out the Lakers by 36 points Sunday night in Los Angeles. The Warriors were routed 106-87 that same night at Portland.
“We were feeling really good about ourselves,” Dirk Nowitzki said. “They got embarrassed in Portland and they came out swinging. I thought we were never really ready for their attack. We were backpedaling all game long.”
The unbeaten run was tied for the seventh longest in NBA history, and the Mavs were 11-0 on the second half of back-to-backs, but both marks appeared destined to fall as Golden State opened up with an 8-0 lead aided by three Mavs’ turnovers.
“That summed up our night,” Jerry Stackhouse said.
It would only get uglier.
Golden State scored the 64 points in the first half – the most allowed by the Mavs in any half this season. The Mavs’ 23 turnovers (leading to 26 points) were a season-worst total.
The Warriors had 60 points in the paint, 25 on second-chance opportunities and were shooting 62 percent through three quarters to lead by 29. Asked what the most disappointing part of the game was, coach Avery Johnson didn’t blink.
“It’s a buffet of things,” he said. “Just pick it. Pick one and guess what? I’m going to agree with you.
“Our guys are mentally tough, physically tough. They just didn’t have it tonight. None of us were very good.”
Nowitzki sloshed through arguably his worst game of the season, finishing with more than twice as many turnovers (seven) as baskets (three) in 28 minutes. The Warriors opened small on Nowitzki, with 6-foot-8 Stephen Jackson on the 7-footer.
“It’s not anything I haven’t seen before,” Nowitzki said. “I just wasn’t effective in my role. I turned the ball over a bunch.”
Winning 70 is not important to Revo …
Winning 70 is not what this team is about. Winning the NBA championship has been and remains, I am confident, this team's one and only driving force.
It's not about joining Jordan and the Bulls. It's about getting rid of that
tormenting memory of Dwyane Wade and the Heat that lingers, like bad B.O., from last summer.
It's very possible that the Mavs will win 70 or even more.
They went into Monday night's game at Golden State riding a 17-game winning streak and needing to win 18 of their final 21 to hit the 70-win mark.
Jimmy crack corn, and I don't care.
(No, that's not a '70s reference; that old saw is even more ancient than that.)
The great news is, I don't think the Mavs care that much about 70 either. If it happens, great, if it doesn't, no sweat. They have bigger whales to harpoon.
"As long as it happens one game at a time, fine," Harris said. "I think it's foolish to set that as your goal because then there would be a false sense of accomplishment, which might misalign our focus. That's not what we're shooting for.
"We've never mentioned division title. We've never mentioned anything less than winning it all. It has set an incredibly tough bar to get over, but that's what we're all on board doing and we're willing to face the consequences if we don't win it. We're not going to fail to win because we didn't totally dedicate ourselves to the task."
That's what I wanted to hear and what I expect to hear, not just from Harris, but from Mark Cuban, from Avery Johnson, right on down to the last guy on the bench.
Winning 70, or even matching Jordan's Bulls with a league record 72 victories, would be a sweet accomplishment, something to look back on with pride someday. But it will mean absolutely nothing if the Mavs don't win the championship.
If anything, it would only make the Mavs a punch line in NBA history. Oh, yeah, the only team to win 70 games and not win the title. That's not what the Mavs want to be remembered for when it's all said and done.
All this regular-season success means is that the Mavs can secure home-court
advantage throughout the playoffs.
Two quick hits. 1) I must admit that I never watch Golden State and therefore didn’t really know much about this kid, Monta Ellis. But, what a talent. He is very young and very impressive. 2) NBA.com now has this embedded graphic, so I might as well use it.
Tonight could be 500 for Mike Modano at home against Philadelphia. Is he the best American ever? …I would say no, but he is in the mix…Give Me Chelios, Leetch, LaFontaine, and then Modano…
The Stars won the Cup in 1999, when Modano played the championship series with a broken left wrist and assisted on both goals in the triple-overtime title-clinching game at Buffalo. They made it back to the finals in 2000 and have been to the playoffs in nine of 13 seasons since moving to Dallas.
"Numbers speak for themselves when you have the ability to play that long," Modano said. "The Stanley Cup was something. They can't say he was a great player but he never won."
Housley played in more games than any other NHL player -- 1,495 over 21 seasons -- without winning a Stanley Cup. He played in the finals only once, when the Washington Capitals were swept by Detroit in 1998.
Mullen was on two championship teams, the 1991 Pittsburgh Penguins and 1989 Calgary Flames.
With his championship and pending scoring records, Modano is easily considered one of the top American players ever.
"If not No. 1, then in top three or four, up there with (Jeremy) Roenick, Pat LaFontaine, and guys like that," said Chris Chelios, the 45-year-old Detroit defenseman who is a Chicago native. "Joey Mullen was also a guy who was a big scorer as an American, who doesn't get a lot of credit."
Roenick, the No. 8 pick in the same draft with Modano, was third on both American scoring lists with 491 goals and 670 points in 1,235 games.
While Mullen is No. 1 on the list for American goal-scorers, that is only 35th overall on the NHL list. Only about 15 percent of the league's current players were born in the United States.
"It tells you there's a lot of great players, a lot of great Canadians, a lot of great players in the world," Modano said. "Just to be in that category will be very meaningful."
Since the draft that included Modano and Roenick, there have been only two American-born players chosen No. 1 overall: defenseman Bryan Berard in 1995 and goalie Rick DiPietro in 2000.
Here is a fine email:
Hey, love you guys. I only get to listen from 1-2 everyday on my lunch hour, but I love having a place to hear hockey talk around here. And the post-game show. It's like a haven for a puckhead like me.
OK, we gotta get people out to the AAC this week for Stars games, and I'll tell you story for why. I had to move to NY for a few years for work, so the only Stars games I could go to was when they came up there. So, one night I go to MSG to see the Stars and the Rangers. Got a seat on the first row right behind the Stars bench. And the Stars sucked, lost 3-0. But it was a great night because Messier passed Gordie Howe that night for 2nd place all time in scoring. Scored the empty netter from about eight feet from me. The atmosphere of the building, the moment. It was an unbelievable experience.
Now, you can't overestimate what Messier means to the Rangers and the city of NY, and Mike Modano means no less to the Stars. And when he gets 500 and even more when he passes Mullen, it will be no different than that night at MSG. If you are just a casual fan, you don't want to miss it. For puck crazy guys like me, it's unthinkable to miss it. A moment like it is a rare event in any sport. So, let's get everybody out there. Man, i'm counting the minutes to puck drop tomorrow.
Thanks for my haven
Jared- world's biggest Jamie Langenbrunner fan
PS Since you seem enamoured of Jason "Arnott Any Good" here's a couple stats, Arnott playoff goals in Dallas- 4 Jamie playoff goals in NJ- 14, Arnott career playoff goals-23, Jamie- 29 We got screwed!!!
Penguins are staying in Pittsburgh …This is very good news. That team should not be leaving that city...
The Pittsburgh Penguins have reached an agreement with state and local officials for construction of a new arena that will keep the team here under a 30-year lease.
The basics of the agreement were reached in a make-or-break meeting last week in Philadelphia, where both sides reported that significant progress was made. Most remaining details were worked out over the weekend, according to sources close to the negotiations.
A formal announcement will be made later today, prior to the Penguins 7:30 p.m. home game against the Buffalo Sabres. Gov. Ed Rendell is expected to be on hand for the announcement.
The arena, which will cost about $290 million, is expected to be ready for the 2009-2010 National Hockey League season. The Penguins will continue to play at Mellon Arena under a short-term lease extension until the new arena is built.
Under terms of the deal, the Pens will pay $3.8 million per year toward construction and will add another $400,000 per year for capital improvements.
A meeting had been scheduled here for tomorrow, where Penguins co-owners Mario Lemieux and Ron Burkle were supposed to meet with Mr. Rendell, Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and County Chief Executive Dan Onorato.
It was not clear last night whether that meeting would still be held. It may only be needed to go over details of a deal that officials have been seeking for months.
Gagne throws a pitch! Off a Mound. To a batter! …if he gets 20 saves, we should all feel VERY lucky…
Monday's appearance was the most recent big step in a comeback from arm and back surgeries, which limited him to 15 2/3 innings over the past two seasons.
Gagne had been pitching off a mound since early February but hadn't faced hitters. If he has no problems, he'll next pitch in a simulated game or minor league exhibition Thursday or in the Rangers' exhibition Friday against San Diego.
Manager Ron Washington said he intends to keep Gagne away from American League teams this spring to increase the element of surprise when they face him during the season.
The Rangers are hopeful Gagne could still pitch about six to eight innings this spring and be ready on opening day. While Gagne said he expects to be able to pitch three days in a row to start the season, the Rangers will probably have him take a day off between outings early in the year.
What was clear Monday is that Gagne doesn't have the same fastball, but it may not be necessary. Gagne's fastball was regularly clocked between 87 and 91 mph, and it could get to 93-94 by the end of spring. It probably won't approach 96 mph, his regular pre-injury velocity, ever again.
Rob Neyer picks the Rangers! …
First, 1-4, predict the AL West.
Honestly, I haven't gotten far enough yet in my preseason analysis to do this with any sort of confidence. But my gut tells me the Rangers are going to surprise us (in a good way) and the A's are going to surprise us (in a bad way), so I'll order them:
Who do you think is the best everyday player in the division?
It's not a good division for everyday players, but I think the answer probably is Michael Young, pushed this season by his teammate, Mark Teixeira. Which is a pretty good argument for the Rangers doing well this season. If, of course, they can find two or three good starting pitchers.
Lance Briggs wants out of Chicago …
Jake the Snake’s teeth by Sports by Brooks …
The Office rules …
Blow up your Tivo …
Old News, but Careful when you say “gay” …
When a few classmates razzed Rebekah Rice about her Mormon upbringing with questions such as, "Do you have 10 moms?" she shot back: "That's so gay."
Those three words landed the high school freshman in the principal's office and resulted in a lawsuit that raises this question: When do playground insults used every day all over America cross the line into hate speech that must be stamped out?
After Rice got a warning and a notation in her file, her parents sued, claiming officials at Santa Rosa's Maria Carillo High violated their daughter's First Amendment rights when they disciplined her for uttering a phrase "which enjoys widespread currency in youth culture," according to court documents.
Testifying last week about the 2002 incident, Rice, now 18, said that when she uttered those words, she was not referring to anyone's sexual orientation. She said the phrase meant: "That's so stupid, that's so silly, that's so dumb."
Aki versus the Ants
Chunk vs. Jack Bauer