Lion Face/Lemon Face 01.08.10: One Flippin’ Game? Edition

The national championship for college football (which is randomly selected instead of played out like gladiators intended) was the showcase Thursday night. What does this have to do with lion faces and lemon faces?

Well, Matt and Ben can further elaborate on that:

That’s right, guys. Lion faces were for those fans of Alabama and the Crimson Tide. Lemon faces were for basketball fans that had no idea what to do with themselves thanks to a one-game kind of evening.

Oh yeah, and a lemon face for our Texas readers as well…

Lion Face: Nate Robinson
Start us off right, Nate!

That caused me to have this reaction:

Lemon Face: Nate Robinson
Oh hey Nate, I thought the dunk was great and all. It added a lot of energy to the proceedings. But here’s the thing. You can’t expect to walk away from the night with just a lion face when you turn the ball over seven times in 19 minutes on the floor. I can’t imagine why Mike D’Antoni didn’t want to play you for those 14 games. I mean, seven turnovers in 19 minutes is freaking prolific. Four of them were from just bad passes. Yinka Dare thinks you’re bad at passing (are those types of disses still culturally funny and relevant?)(oh and I almost forgot, do you still call them “disses”?). Clean it up, little man.

Lion Face: Gerald Wallace
No Warriors in action on Thursday night so someone had to fill in for Monta Ellis. Enter Gerald Wallace. Played every tick on the clock for the Bobcats. He sat during commercial timeouts, halftime, and possibly during the between quarters musical chairs competition. 13 points and nine rebounds isn’t the best night out of your best player but I’ll forgive the lack of outstanding stats when he’s not taking a single break.

Lemon Face: D.J. Augustin
There was a time before the season in which everyone wondered if you should start over Raymond Felton. Felton hadn’t set himself apart from the earlier versions of himself. He hadn’t progressed like we needed him to. And you were there – waiting to put up big time points in a little time offensive unit. Well, three points on four shots in 13 minutes isn’t getting it done. Felton is still THE point guard for this team.

Lion Face: Jonathan Bender
Four blocks from a guy who retired from basketball because of a bad knee. That’s hard to do.

Lion Face: Wilson Chandler
Wilson Chandler drew the short end of the assignment stick tonight when he had to either check Gerald Wallace or check Stephen Jackson. Well, he did a pretty good job on both. Wallace, as mentioned earlier, only scored 13 points in 48 minutes and he needed 12 shots to do so. Stephen Jackson got 26 points for the Bobs but he needed 26 shot attempts to do so. That’s making them work. But that’s not all. Wilson Chandler also threw in 27 points, seven rebounds and six assists against two of the better perimeter defenders in the NBA. And he had only one turnover in 46 minutes.

Lion Face: Flip Murray
You want to know what Flip Murray does? He puts up points. Now, he’s not Vinnie Johnson or Ben Gordon by any means. He’s just a mild-mannered scorer off the bench that is brought in with one goal and one goal only – get buckets. Ricky Davis used to put “Get Buckets” on his shoes. He probably still does. But Flip Murray flat out GETS BUCKETS. I don’t think there is a single defender that can guard him when he’s hot. He’s cold-blooded. He’s filthy. He’s grimy. He’s Javaris Crittenton in the locker room (always has one in the chamber)… too soon?

Flip Murray dropped 20 points against the Knicks in just 22 minutes off the bench. He hit half of his 14 shots. He made four of his seven three-point attempts. He didn’t turn the ball over and he even blocked a shot. When the Knicks tried to get some distance between them and Charlotte in the second quarter, Flip calmly and coldly poured in 13 of his points. And it wasn’t anything fancy, either. It was just getting the ball, making a move, and hitting a shot. Over and over and over.

Lion Face: Danilo Gallinari
The Rooster flat out chucks shots. I mean, he makes Cuttino Mobley’s shot selection blush a little bit. He will let it fly from wherever on the court he damn well pleases. And he doesn’t care if it’s early, middle or late in the game. He gets the ball and the three is going up. He took 11 of them against Charlotte. He made five of them. He made three of them in the fourth quarter and two of those came in the final minute and a half of the game to give the Knicks a comfortable cushion to win the game with. Imagine if Hedo Turkoglu had Peja Stojakovic’s jumper and Sam Cassell’s ONIONS. That’s Danilo Gallinari. Enjoy, Knicks fans.

Seth Carstens