No team better represents the Yin & the Yang in the NBA than the Memphis Grizzlies. Their logo is a bear, shaded dark on one side and light on the other. The team has gone from one extreme to the other. From Vancouver to Memphis. Canada to America. Caesar to Czar. Last year’s surprise to this year’s dissapointment. A balanced team as opposed to being driven by one or two stars.
In their first match-up the Knicks soundly beat Memphis. New York’s best scorer, Stephon Marbury had 26 points on highly efficient scoring (75% eFG). Michael Sweetney was the Knicks second best player that night, nailing 5-10 and pulling down 5 offensive boards. The win was their third in a row, and put them 2 games over .500. Yin.
Away from the friendly confines between 7th & 8th avenues, the Knicks started off the game down 10-0. Marbury, the Knicks leading scorer on the season, had only 9 points. His 21% eFG underscored an all around bad shooting night (38%) for the orange & blue. Sweetney missed all 5 of his attempts. Definately Yang.
The Knicks did crawl back to 47-49 by halftime, and took the lead in the third (Yin). It was New York’s reserves that mounted the comeback, (Yin) but they couldn’t sustain their play (Yang). Just as quickly the Knicks were down by 13 at the start of the 4th quarter (Yang).
This time the Knicks are on a 3 game losing streak, and have to hope for a win against a struggling Hornets. New Orleans is off to a great start in trying to earn as many ping pong balls as they can in the next NBA lottery. They just traded old-but-serviceable PG Armstrong to the Mavs for young-and-uhhh-well-traveled Dan Dickau. If the Hornets are serious about getting Nemanja Aleksandrov, they’ll give Dickau the starter’s role right away. The ex-Bulldog is on his 4th team in only 2 years, and hopes one day to follow the path that the multi-uniformed Rick Brunson has set forth.
One final note, I’m putting together a collection for the family of Latrell Sprewell. The fiery ex-Knick, who has seen more extremes of Yin & Yang than most, earned a one game suspension for using profanities against a female heckler. Latrell asked for more money in the offseason to help feed his family. By my calculations that means he’s out $176,371.95, and I hate to see anyone go hungry.