Friday, July 10, 2009

July 9th, 2009: Los Angeles at New York

Los Angeles Sparks 69, New York Liberty 60

The Game Notes of Doom and any number of dedicated Liberty fans would like to know what the heck is going on here.

And the day started out so nicely, too. Shame it had to end like this.

No, really, it did. All the Usual Suspects were there, and I got to spend a whole bunch of time talking to another Rebecca-never-Becky who remembered the good old days, which was awesome, especially because she was bubbly and enthusiastic and just a little snarky.

And guys. Guys, you guys, I got to meet The Libertine! He is real! He does exist! And this team's not giving him any incentive to resume blogging! The Spanish-speaking guys behind us were also a blast- they really got into the spirit of things, right down to the cussing (yes, guys, I know what puta and mierda mean).

The anthem was great, too- one of the guys from the Alan Parsons Project and his daughter. Their harmony was excellent, and her voice was very well controlled and refined.

Great LOL moment of the day: Anne Donovan in a Janel McCarville t-shirt. While the most likely explanation is that she just had to grab the nearest item of clothing, I prefer it as a statement about her favorite on the roster. Second place in the LOL contest: "I'm a Mac and I'm a PC" with Janel as the Mac and That Fucking Moron as the PC. Made me want to run out and buy an iBook. Third place: Sue Wicks headbanging.

Yes, I am trying to avoid talking about the actual game, thank you for noticing.

So... why exactly is Bobbitt starting? She's cute and all, and being low to the ground allows her to make defensive plays more easily, but Harrower is the more dominant point guard on the offensive end: she's more willing to go to the hoop, and she's not afraid to make herself heard, even up to the green seats. For that matter, Parker's not ready to start yet. She still doesn't look completely in game shape, still looks like there are flakes of rust fluttering off her whenever she tries to make her moves, but of course she gets the benefit of the doubt. Tina Thompson's stroke is still a thing of beauty, and she still has the kind of range that NBA guards would weep for; I don't know whether to be frustrated or resigned that her defender let her take the deep threes. And again, why is Marie Ferdinand-Harris starting? I just don't get it.

Someone needs to get on Betty Lennox. Yes, I know the game is over. But we still have to go out to LA, and considering the epic defensive fail our guards showed yesterday, they can't possibly start too early. Quinn also played well off the bench, and Cooper used her as a change of... not pace, but size. Vanessa Hayden made a cameo. No, people in front of me, Lisa Leslie wasn't there, much less in the game. No, that's Vanessa Hayden, not Courtney Paris; Courtney plays for Sacramento, Ashley Paris was the one drafted by LA and she got cut. BRB, facepalming forever.

So the last game gave Loree the notion she could shoot threes. Yeah, no, that didn't happen so well. And her ballhandling was lackadaisical- well, to be fair, so was the rest of the team's, but I hold point guards to higher standards and I'm not afraid to admit it. The play where she dropped the ball and watched it go out of bounds was one of the nadirs of the game, and the fact that we had multiple really speaks volumes about the game. Janel looked overmatched in the first half, then started the third quarter on fire, then disappeared except for random acts of senseless klutziness. Essence's shot still looks off- are we sure she's not hurt? It's not that she's missing, it's that her motion doesn't look right. At least she was trying to get inside. Cathrine started getting desperate and putting up short shots. I can't really blame her, though, because both she and Shameka logged over 36 minutes, and Cathrine turns the most interesting colors when she's been on the floor too long. So I can't blame Shameka, either. And at least everyone's showing good hands on defense- once they, y'know, actually find their woman.

If anyone has seen Ashley Battle's defense, please call the Garden immediately. It appears to have gone missing, leaving us only with her on the offensive ed, which is is not a good thing. She's still a sparkplug on the boards and on the fast break, but that's not enough for the role we use her in, and if we were just going to keep someone for that role, Lisa Willis was better at that particular form of energy. Leilani didn't play very much and looked a little out of her depth when she did. Tiffany was fairly effective- she matched up pretty well against the array of forwards LA was using with the lack of Leslie and the minimal minutes for Hayden. Kia Vaughn was in just long enough to get in the boxscore, then sat down and was never seen again. Spencer got into the game, but I don't remember if she did anything. Damnit, woman, if you're a three-point shooter, make sure your teammates know your spots and give you the ball in them. Be assertive. You were certainly assertive enough before the game.

Be assertive- that's actually good advice for the whole damn team. I don't know how many times the ball hit the floor on rebounds, but I'm willing to bet it was about the same number of times Liberty players actually went to the floor for loose balls. The fight just disappeared from them sometime in the middle of the third quarter, and the rest of the game was just going through the motions, like someone had punctured them with a balloon or something. They got sloppy, they started taking really stupid shots, and they left everything short (which might have something to do with our coach's inability to go more than one or two players into her bench; hello, McFly!). It was sickening.

The refs didn't help either; a lot of holding went unreported, though Michael Price on the crew didn't help things. Which, by the way, I thought the refs were all being regionalized, so what gives with Price being on the East Coast? Is he LA's pet ref or something? I don't actually expect referees to be able to count steps or seconds in the lane, but the holding was blatant. Guys, come on. That shit is dangerous.

So many Sparks fans. Too many Sparks fans. I'll respect you if you show up in your team's gear, but don't mix gear (I'm looking at you, Miss Parker Jersey and Liberty Cap) and don’t show up without gear and proceed to taunt Liberty fans (I'm looking at you, squatters in section 120). The amount of cheering LA got was despicable. This is New York, people! Thompson I can understand, because she's a legend of the game and enough hard core fans are pissed off about how the Comets went down that she's getting the cheers, but there's no excuse for the rest of the behavior.

All in all, a very frustrating experience, and more so because it started off so well.

1 comment:

pt said...

A pity the Libertine is no longer blogging, 'cause his blog inspired me to start. Maybe I could actually hope that the Liberty start to win some games (excluding the one tonight, of course).

Today's word verification is "palimili", use as in "Michael Price called Chamique Holdsclaw three times for palimili the ball."