TNT NBA Notes December 27: LeBron James And The Cavs Win A Big Game On Road

Chuck better get ready for that long walk in a speedo!

Sick last night and the better part of today. Thank God my sis is in the medical field. Thanks Sis.

TBR, why you call me out on Webb? With stomach pains, it wasn’t a good time to laugh bruh. 😉

Notes from last night. Enjoy.

Cavaliers forward LeBron James response to critics predicting that the Cavaliers won’t make the playoffs this season: “People have their opinions and (the Cavaliers) have to keep proving people wrong and at the same time, we have to go out as professional athletes and continue to get better. We don’t come into the season at this point talking about making the playoffs; we want to win the Championship. Right now, we’re not at a level to win a Championship.”

Barkley on the Cavaliers disappointing season thus far: “(The Cavaliers) are very fortunate that Miami and Chicago (are having bad seasons). LeBron (James) is terrific, (after) Kobe Bryant, (James) is the second best player in the league right now. (The Cavaliers) making it to the (2007 NBA) Finals was the biggest fluke ever. They still haven’t addressed the point guard or the outside shooting situation. Until they get LeBron some help, they are just wasting time.”

Barkley on the Western Conference: “(When) I look at the West (Conference), I see San Antonio and I see others. The team that trades for (Nets point guard) Jason Kidd is going to be the second best team in the West. I’m very disappointed in Phoenix, very disappointed in Utah, disappointed in Dallas and disappointed in Denver. The Lakers are playing well, but I don’t think (they) are for real.”

Smith on Celtics guard Ray Allen: “(People) tried to figure out who was going to be (the Celtics’) closer, the guy who takes most of the clutch, last second shots and it’s been (Ray Allen). He’s been the guy throughout (their 23 wins) and he’s made big shot after big shot. Kevin Garnett has been their best player but over the long haul, Ray Allen has been the most consistent player.”

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Game 1: Cleveland Cavaliers (88) @ Dallas Mavericks (81)

Announcers Marv Albert, Reggie Miller, Mike Fratello with Craig Sager reporting

Fratello on the importance of team chemistry: “Chemistry is such a large part of team’s success. Look at Chicago a year ago, (they had) 49 wins and beat Miami in the first round (playoffs) because of the chemistry they had. Cleveland has struggled with chemistry early in the season.”

Miller on Cavaliers guard Damon Jones refusing to enter the game on December 25 versus the Miami Heat and subsequently demanding a trade from the team: “I’m a little confused. At the captains meeting (at half-court) before the game, going up with (Cavaliers guard) Eric Snow was Damon Jones. If he is pulling acts like this, you can’t have a leader or a captain doing things like this with the ‘C’ on his jersey. It doesn’t set a good example for the younger players.”

Craig Sager interviewed Cavaliers head coach Mike Brown following the first quarter.

Brown on the Cavaliers defensive strategy in the first half: “I really think they were blinded by your shoes. They couldn’t see because of the reflection from your shoes and that made it tough on them on that end of the floor. Besides that, we tried to contest some shots to help the shoes out.”

Fratello on Cavaliers guard Larry Hughes role with the team: “The question to me is, ‘What is Larry Hughes?’ Is he a starting scoring guard? Is he a starting point guard? Is he a starting defensive specialist? The one thing that the people in Cleveland see is Larry Hughes get 35 points one night and then he’ll come back the next four games and go for four points, six points and they can’t figure out what (kind of player) he is exactly.”

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Ernie Johnson, Barkley and Kenny Smith

Barkley on the Dallas Mavericks making a trade: “The Dallas Mavericks have got to make a trade. I think (New Jersey Nets point guard) Jason Kidd would be a perfect fit there. At some point New Jersey is going to have to start rebuilding. Kidd could get Dallas right there (to the top of the Western Conference).”

Smith on the Dallas Mavericks style of play: “(The Mavericks) are very selective, overly selective, in their shot selection which now makes them a half-court team. Not only a half-court team, but a perimeter half-court team because they don’t have a post-up guy.”

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Miller on the high expectations set on the Dallas Mavericks: “(The Dallas Mavericks) are a marked team. You win 67 games the year before; obviously you’re going to have a bulls-eye on your back every time you play.”

Miller on the poor shot selection in the Cavaliers/Mavericks game: “For all the high school and college kids watching this game tonight, this really isn’t a good example of basketball at the highest level.”

LeBron James on the Cavaliers’ defensive inconsistencies: “Right now, defensively, we’re not consistent. When we defend, we’re a very good team. When we don’t defend, we don’t look (good). If we can find a way to be more consistent on the defensive end, then you are going to see the team that beat Miami and that beat L.A. (Lakers). Not the team that loses to teams they shouldn’t lose to.”

Fratello on Cleveland’s struggles this season: “(The Cavaliers) know they aren’t the same team defensively that they were a year ago. They have the ability to be a good team. Oftentimes, players think they have plenty of time to get it together, (however) this is game #30 for Cleveland tonight, in 11 more games (they will be at) mid-season.”

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Game 2: Boston Celtics (104) @ Seattle SuperSonics (96)

Announcers: Kevin Harlan, Doug Collins with David Aldridge reporting

Collins on the unselfishness of the Celtics this season: “Boston is being so unselfish (this season); sometimes they are passing up jump shots. It reminds me of All-Star Games when guys go in (to the game) and they are so afraid to shoot the ball or take too many shots they make the extra pass. Boston is continuing to adjust to one another, but they have been so unselfish this year.”

Ray Allen on his return on Seattle: “It’s an exciting moment for me. I think about going back to Milwaukee after I got traded (to Seattle in 2003). You see so many faces that you, not necessarily forgot, but people in the same seats, the ushers in the building. You forget how much the place meant to you when you see people that you haven’t seen.”

Collins on some questions surrounding the lineup of the Seattle SuperSonics: “The point guard situation is very much up in the air (for the Seattle SuperSonics), as is their center position. (They have) three big men, one is in the (Developmental) League, (center) Robert Swift is now hurt (and center Johan) Petro is on the bench. They have to figure out what they have at point guard and center. That’s going to be the key to the season.”

Collins on the keys to Seattle’s season: “Watch this Seattle team this year and see the growth. (Watch rookie forward) Jeff Green’s progress and (how he’s) becoming a much better player along with (rookie guard) Kevin Durant’s progress. These two guys are going to be critical to this franchise. Don’t focus on the wins and losses, the objectives of this season are far greater than that. The point guard situation, the development of (Green and Durant), the big men and their progress and (the team’s) effort every night.”

David Aldridge interviewed Celtics guard Paul Pierce following the second quarter.

Paul Pierce on facing the best efforts of his opponents night after night: “We (have) to get used to it. (We’ve got) a target on our back. We’ve played back to back nights, we’ve got to find some energy, dig deep and get a win.”


Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith

Barkley on the Boston Celtics: “The Celtics have two weaknesses. They’ve got to solve the point guard situation. (Celtics guard) Rajon Rondo has got to get better throughout the regular season. Also, Kevin Garnett has got to be more dominant in the low post because the three best players are jump shooters. They’ve got to find a way to get easier baskets.”

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Collins on the Celtics being relevant in the NBA once again: “When you have to go through all that losing and then you get the opportunity, finally, to have a chance to win. There’s no better guy than Doc Rivers and to see him have this success is great for him and the Boston Celtics. It’s nice to see them relevant once again when you talk about NBA teams. It used to be you wouldn’t even talk about the Celtics.”

Collins on what young teams, such as the SuperSonics, need to work on throughout the season: “(Young teams should) give (themselves) a chance to win every night, especially at home. More importantly, (they should) learn (how) to play in close games. So many guys put up big numbers on bad teams and they don’t really understand what it takes to win in this league. I think (SuperSonics head coach) P.J. (Carlesimo) is doing a great job night-in and night-out bringing accountability to (the SuperSonics) and making them give effort (every night).”

Collins on who he would take in a playoff series between the Celtics and the Detroit Pistons: “Right now, if (Boston) played a playoff series against Detroit, I would take Detroit. (They have) experience and that core (group of players) they’ve had together for a while.”

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Inside the NBA

Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith

Barkley on the Boston Celtics winning more than 70 games this season: “If (the Celtics) win 72 games, I’ll walk from (Atlanta) to Phoenix…in a Speedo.”

Barkley on Kevin Durant’s small stature: “A Happy Meal wouldn’t hurt (Kevin Durant).”

TNT’s Cheryl Miller interviewed Portland Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy on the success he’s enjoying both individually and as a team.

Roy on the slow pace to his game: “That is the way I’ve played my whole life. Growing up coaches would say, you play to slow or you need to speed it up. I was never prone to do that. When I came to the NBA, the first thing (Trail Blazers head) coach (Nate) McMillan and his staff said was, ‘We love your pace, don’t change one thing about it.’ Coming into this season, we really needed that. We have a young team and we have the tendency to play fast.”

Roy on the inspiration behind the Brandon Roy Foundation: “Growing up in the inner-city, I’ve seen (a lot) of talented players that slip through the cracks in school. It’s tough for me; I just don’t want to see any more of those players slip through the cracks. I wanted to start a foundation to help get these kids tested (for potential learning disabilities). That way, when they go to high school, they’ll be prepared and they won’t feel like they are two chapters behind in school.”

Roy on downplaying becoming a star in the NBA: “It’s my nature; it’s to keep me level. I don’t want to give myself any more added pressure than there already is. To keep me focused and to keep me doing what I do, I think my teammates believe in me when they see that. They know that I’m really out there to win and not to be an All-Star or an MVP. This keeps our team chemistry better in the locker room.”

Barkley on Brandon Roy’s confidence level: “(Players) go through stages where they are athletic, then (they) become a good player. Then you can see their confidence go through the roof. That’s what makes a great player; the confidence level reaches the point where they say, ‘I’m better than any of these guys out here.’ (Brandon Roy) plays with such calmness that he knows he’s good. I just see his confidence catching up with his talent.”

Smith on the Portland Trail Blazers playing with the ‘team’ concept: “(Trail Blazers head coach) Nate McMillon deserves a lot of credit. What he has done is implement a team concept. LaMarcus Aldridge has been out, other guys have been (injured) and other players have stepped up so they pass the ball, they share the ball. They make decisions like a veteran team which means they pass the ball, they move the ball, they are unselfish and they play hard. Which sounds simple, but if you look around the league, there are a lot of young teams that don’t do that.”

Denzel Washington, star of the new movie The Great Debaters, posed the following question to the studio crew to debate: “Now that Reggie Miller has retired, who’s the best actor in the NBA?”

Barkley and Smith selected L.A. Lakers guard Derek Fisher; Ernie Johnson selected San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili.

Log on to TNT OverTime for a full replay of Inside the NBA and special features from TNT’s NBA announcers.


7 Responses to “TNT NBA Notes December 27: LeBron James And The Cavs Win A Big Game On Road”

  1. thebrotherreport Says:

    Anytime I think of C-Webb you come to mind, it’s a no-brainer now. Get well soon.

  2. Oh man…..thank god there shouldn’t be too many traumatized motorists along the 10……I might just have to stay away from PHX though come July (it’ll take Chuck a couple months at least to make that walk) if they do win 72…..I do NOT wanna see that. And yeah, the Trailblazers are impressive. All kinds of kudos to Nate McMillan. Dude is nothing but a class act. He was solid with those good Sonic teams and he’s still the man. Brandon Roy can do it all. Wait till he’s put up a few 23-7-7 years and people will start taking notice; Outlaw can bury you in a hurry; they’ve got Channing Frye deep on the bench, Przybilla who can move some bodies even if he doesn’t score much; and of course the big man coming back next year. Jarrett Jack and Sergio Rodriguez can handle the point. Webster doesn’t get enough props;

    To me, the West does look fairly wide open and I agree with Chuck; first tier is San Antone, peerless; then I’d say second tier PHX is still there, I don’t wanna sleep on UTH because they’re the sort of time that will lurk in the shadows and get stronger as the season goes on. I still don’t know what to make of GSW. I believe that if a team took them or PHX on and played full-court press defense the whole game, those teams would not be nearly as prolific as they are. If you can disrupt their flow, they are handicapped. But no team can seemingly commit to doing that for 48 minutes. Houston……as goes T-mac, so go the Rockets. Nuggets-where your head at Nuggets where your head at? Clippers….this is a lost season. Dallas…..I think they’re up there in the second tier and Avery won’t let people quit; if they lay down, he will play someone else, I believe; but that beating by GSW has left a psychic toll, I’m convinced. The one team the national media isn’t talking about is the Hornets and they are scary solid right now, seems to me. But really, this is the Spurs conference to win (or lose)

  3. Oops, was thinking about the Lakers and was gonna say they’re in the second tier at this point, I believe, and rising steadily. Not convinced yet that they will even get to the second round of the playoffs, but the more they play, the more hopeful I get.

  4. I agree with charles, boston is weak at the point. It’s ok to go with Rondo starting, but then you need to get a veteran backup. Peyton’s name has floated, but I’m not sure he is the answer.

  5. Mizz : You get my email? Jes’ checkin.

    Last night’s Inside was probably the best so far of the season. Charles and Kenny killing each other’s manicures and Who He Play For made me laugh as hard as Charles doing his David Blaine impression underwater.

    Best show in all of sports.

    Btw, anyone else watch Top Gear on BBC America? I’ve got a story in mind contrasting the two.

  6. kingjameskingjamesfanan Says:

    King James is back in the game, that is why the Cavs manage to win. Way to go King LeBron… prove to everyone that you are worthy to be crown as the MVP.

    LeBron forever

  7. Evan I got ya email. Been out of commission with a stomach virus. I’ll get back to you after the first.

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