Lion Face/Lemon Face: 12.1.09

Matt and Ben, you’ve been great:

But there is a new sheriff in town at giving Lion Faces and Lemon Faces and it weighs about four ounces. Hit it, Surprised Kitty!



Lion Face: Andrew Bogut
Ozzie! Ozzie! Ozzie! Oy! Oy! Oy!

Andrew Bogut returned like Yahoo Serious could have only dreamed of! After missing six games with a leg injury, he scored 22 points and grabbed 15 rebounds against one of the best defensive and rebounding big men in the league in Joakim Noah. He also dished out three assists, stole the ball three times and blocked four shots. On four of his five offensive rebounds, the Bucks ended up scoring for a total of 10 second chance points. He kept the Bucks afloat in the second quarter with his 14 points while Milwaukee made just five of 15 shots outside of the Aussie. He truly was a Young Einstein last night. Get it? Young Einstein? Yahoo Serious? They’re both Australian? It’s clever!

Lemon Face: Bulls’ Game-Tying Attempt
I actually don’t really have a big problem with the final play for the Bulls when Derrick Rose set up Brad Miller for a game-tying jumper. It was an open look for a solid mid-range shooter. The thing I wonder about is why give that shot to someone who had only taken one shot in the entire second half? Why not give it to John Salmons who was making almost everything? Why not give it to Luol Deng who scored 22 points? Oh Vinny Del Negro, why do you do these things to Bulls fans? Haven’t you put them through enough with your timeout distribution in the playoffs?

Lion Face: Jason Terry

I seriously can’t tell the difference between this man:

And this man:

Because they both throw daggers…

Lemon Face: Samuel Dalembert
Seriously, Sammy – what in the hell were you thinking out there? I mean, it’s one thing to get over zealous and try to tip in a missed game-tying shot. It’s another to completely wipe away your team’s chances to possibly tie a game by goaltending your own teammate’s jump shot!!! What is the thought process there?

Lion Face: Andre Iguodala
Not only does Andre Iguodala fill out a stat sheet like Sean Marks fills out an empty spot on an NBA roster but he also hits some HUGE shots when called upon. He scored 19 points in 34 minutes on the floor with four rebounds, four assists, four steals, two three-pointers and a block. Through his passing and scoring, he accounted for 12 points in the last four minutes of the game. He made a big three to tie the game with five seconds left. And then he had an overtime-inducing jumper get wiped away by his own teammate. He’s turning into one of those guys you want taking the shot in important situations.

Another Lion Face: Jrue Holiday

Get some, Drew Drue Dru Droo Jrue!

Lemon Face: Memphis Grizzlies basketball
You are KILLING Matt Moore! KILLING HIM!!!!

Lion Face: Carlos Boozer
24 points, 15 rebounds, seven assists, three steals, one block and 9/14 shooting on a night in which he’s +24 on the court? What is it – a contract year? Oh…

Lemon Face: Pacers Shooting
I can’t tell you exactly how many missed jumpers came up short when the Pacers players let them fly in Oakland last night but I can estimate that 60 of the 48 missed shots by Indiana hit front iron. My math might be a little off on that. It seemed like every time there was a three chucked up by Mike Dunleavy, Jr or Troy Murphy, it hit front iron and turned into an instant scoring opportunity for the Warriors. Actually of the 18 missed threes by the Pacers, the Warriors were able to turn around and score 20 points off of those misses. I have no idea if that’s good or bad. But I do know that 20 points is the difference between the Pacers winning and losing this game.

Lion Face: Corey Maggette
After Monta Ellis fouled out (we’ll get to that in a bit) with 6:03 left in the game, it was Corey Maggette and his shoulders who scored nine of Golden State’s final 20 points to close out this game and the victory. I don’t like to give Corey Maggette much credit for anything other than his ability to get to the free throw line and have aesthetically pleasing shoulders but his scoring did help keep the Warriors in a full momentum swing and ward off any final push by the Pacers.

Lemon Face: Monta’s Sixth Foul
Was it a bad call by Danny Crawford? Absolutely. Mike Dunleavy, Jr slid in to the charge after Ellis left the ground. It WASN’T a flop as some people on Twitter were calling it. If you think it was a flop then you have no idea what a flop is. It was a good attempt to take a charge; it was just late. And it should have been called a blocking foul against the Clippers’ coach’s son. Instead, it was Monta’s sixth and final foul of the evening, leaving the last six minutes of the game without Ellis assaulting the 50-point barrier. You avoid that call by playing it safe and pulling up for the jumper. It was a terrible call but Monta should have avoided putting himself in that situation.

Lion Face: Monta Flippin’ Ellis
As for everything else Monta did last night, he was FREAKING brilliant! Lord knows I’m not a Monta Ellis fan but you can’t deny that he’s been nearly perfect offensively over his past five games (35 points per game in that stretch). At one point tonight, the ESPN box score had him playing 41 of a possible 37 minutes on the court and I believed the statistical impossibility as fact. That’s how crazy his time and efforts on the court have been lately. He’s been more aggressive Lamar and Khloe Odom in a candy shop. He attacks the basket in a way that gives the defense no chance of stopping him.

He does stuff like this in a double-digit deficit game that acts as the galvanizing turning point to get his team back on track:

He’s knocking down the mid-range jumper, which gives defenders enough trepidation that they freeze when he begins his attack. This gives him an unfair advantage. Sure, he’s bad at racing mopeds but now that he has his speed and quickness back, nobody even remembers he missed all of that time last season. 45 points on 15/27 shooting and only one made three is absurd. 176 points on 67/128 shooting with just four made threes over a five-game period is NOVA-esque.

Seth Carstens