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NBA Awards 2/21/13

Wednesday Games – Harden Finds The Zone vs Former Team
       In one of the more memorable regular season games in the last few years, James Harden and the Rockets hosted OKC, and Harden was En Fuego!! He was 14-19 from the floor, but it was his 4th quarter shooting that brought Houston back from a 14 pt deficit with 7 min left that was mind-blowing. The Bearded One scored 14 of his career-high 46 pts in those last 7 min, in a variety of ways to lead the Rockets to a dramatic 122-119 comeback win…in regulation. Harden made us aware of how ridiculously special he is…I highly underestimated him at the start of the year. I’m a believer. Durant (who had his 2nd career tri-dub, 16/12/11, but 4-13) is looking to accomplish the rare 50/40/90 feat this year. Harden just gave us a 70/80/90…how many times if ever has that been done? Oh…and he threw in 8 rebs, 6 dimes, and a block & a stl. 7-8 from distance. 11-12 from the stripe. 
           And more bonus Houston coverage, they are rumored to be serious players to get the Joshua Tree from Atl. They acquired more cap space in their trades yesterday, getting Thomas Robinson (T-Rob) and giving up Morris & Patterson. Imagine Josh playing with Harden & Lin, the big man Asik inside to clean the glass…and the great facilitator Chandler Parsons – 4 high quality passers on the floor! I would LOVE to watch that team, and they’d be DANGEROUS in the West…and wouldn’t get caught by the Lakers. Make it happen Daryl!! (Morey, their GM)
Other Selected Action
Paul George picked up where he left off before the break, and actually where he left off in the big game, as he had a solid 17 pts, 3 reb, 4 asst in just 20 min in the All-Star Game, including 2 late treys that made the West earn the win. He led a Pacer blowout over the Knicks 125-91 with 27/8/2 blk, 11-19 w/ 4 treys, making 7-10 from 2-Pt land. Jason Kidd on NY is no longer drinking from that fountain of youth he found mid 1st half of the year – he had 0 pts (0-3), 1 reb, 2 asst (but 3 stl) in 17 min. In his last 10 gms, Kidd is at 2.3 pts, 2.9 reb, 2.1 asst and shooting an abysmal 19.4%…..In likely his last game as a Hawk, Joshua Tree was 1 reb & 1 asst from a triple double, but only scored 10 pts (5-13) as Atlanta lost to Miami 103-90. LBJ had 24/6/11, 4 stl, and again over 50% at 8-15…..The Nets & Bucks completed a home-n-home, this time in Mil, and again it came down to the wire, but Ellis missed 3 straight free throws w/ 2 sec left, giving Brooklyn the 97-94 win. Jennings went nuts again (31/11 dimes, 12-18 shooting), and for the Nets, Joe J crashed hard after Tues night heroics, going 3-14 from the floor…..Last interesting contest – Cleveland beat NO 105-100 as Kyrie went off again, this time for 35/5/7, 2 stl…13-22, 7-7 at the line. A Davis (12/4/1 asst, 2-7 FGs) slumped for the Hornets.
The Akeem Olajuwon Award — James Harden  —  46 pts, 8 rebs, 6 asst, 11-12 FTM, 1 stl, 1 blk, 7-8 on treys, and 14-19 shooting…One of the all-time great regular season performances.
The Mark Randall Award —  Andrea Bargnani  —  0 pts, 2 rebs, 0 asst, 0 FTM, 1 stl, 1 blk, 0 treys, and 0-4 shooting in 22 minutes…Welcome to the rest of your career Andrea – coming off the bench to either be hot or not shooting the ball. Last night he was not. I doubt he ever lands a starting gig again – after 6+ yrs now, it’s obvious to everyone he’s too soft and too streaky. He’s shooting under 30% on treys this yr…for the 2nd season in a row…and he’s due to make $11m next yr, $12m the yr after that. Good luck moving that contract – looks like a strong candidate to be amnestied this summer.

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