Thursday Bullets

  • Os Davis of BallinEurope: "Lithuania is as basketball crazy as the reputation. Man, after barely squeaking by unheralded Great Britain last night, the streets were full of partiers -- one game and it was Canada after an Olympic hockey win. Gotta love it."

  • Ian Segovia of Bucksketball: "If I could love any one thing as much as Luc Mbah a Moute loves playing defense, I’d be a better man."

  • Kevin Garnett says that if he could do it again, he'd probably have left Minnesota sooner because he and Glen Taylor didn't have the same vision, and that he nearly became a Laker, but that Kobe Bryant and Phil Jackson weren't getting along and there was a "lot going on that I didn't want to be a part of." That's all about halfway into this episode of the Dan Patrick show. Garnett then says that Dan Patrick could not score a single bucket in a preseason game. "You can get three picket fences," says Garnett, "you have a better chance of hitting a home run over the green monster than scoring a bucket in an NBA game." He also says Shaquille O'Neal hit a home run over the green monster in batting practice.

  • I'm not sure the giraffe played its best defense, but Dwight Howard dunked on it. Related. And an $800 halfcourt shot for good measure.

  • In their subtle way, the Celtics show signs of being a little frugal.

  • Great idea with the crunch time intentional foul with one to give. Too bad the fouler is a star player who fouled out, missing overtime.

  • Luol Deng, decoy.

  • Finland learned something from Dwyane Wade. Unfortunately, it was a key defensive mistake.

  • A moment of venting about a number of conversations I've had lately with NBA people talking about quant analysis. The idea, the way many NBAers talk about it, is that either stats are better or the traditional way is better. This is like going to the doctor and getting a diagnosis of early stage heart disease, after which they'll tell you to eat, essentially, the diet of a bunny rabbit. So you do that for a while, hate it, and then start looking for examples of skinny vegetable-eaters who have health problems, or obese rib-eaters who are happy and healthy. And you'll start telling people: "Who says these vegetables are so great, anyway?" You set up this vegetables vs. ribs debate. But that misses the point. The point is that the old way was, clearly, wanting. Ribs got you in trouble. It was not the best you could do. Vegetables ... well, they're not your favorite, and they're not miracle drugs two weeks in. But once you know the ribs are killing you, the smart long-term play is to figure out something better. Same ol' same ol' just isn't an option anymore.