Earlier this week, I realized ClipperBlog needed an awards column. But how could I do it? MVP: Obviously Chris Paul. Dunk of the year: DeAndre disposing of Brandon Knight. It’s too easy. But then I received a tweet from a guy who is apparently named Aaron Smarter. (His Twitter handle is also @AaronSmarter so I don’t know if “Smarter” is his actual last name or if he’s just been anointed as smarter than everyone else.) Aaron compared a Clipper to a character from Arrested Development…and then I had it.
The Arrested Development Awards make too much sense. It’s not just because the show (which ran on FOX from 2003 to 2005) is a ClipperBlog favorite, but also because on May 26, it is returning for one more highly delayed season. 15 episodes released straight to Netflix means that in 37 days, we’ll have about seven hours straight of sitting, staring, and drooling. Here are the 12 Arrested Development Awards, starting with the comparison Aaron made, which inspired this piece (because he’s Smarter than I):
The Wayne Jarvis Award for most professional
Willie J. Green
Aaron Smarter was right. From starter to the end of the bench, back to starter to back to the end of the bench, Willie J. Green endured it all this season. And all he did was produce. People make jokes about it, but there’s value in having a guy who’s happy to accept his role as willingly as Willie J. Green. There’s a reason we don’t call him Willie Green, or just Willie or just Green; it’s because Willie J. Green is the consumate professional.
The Gene Parmesan Award for sneakiest moment
Caron Butler’s steal on Jonas Valanciunas
The only thing missing from Butler’s thievery, which was one of the funniest plays I’ve ever seen in a basketball game, was Lucille screeching in Valanciunas’s ear after the play. What was that move from Butler? Will we ever see the I’m-pretending-to-shake-your-hand-and-say-good-game-but-I’m-actually-going-to-steal-the-ball move again? Did Jonas Valanciunas lose trust in the entire human race after that moment? These are questions I want answered. Someone hire Gene Parmesan to look into this.
The Kitty Award for saying goodbye to “these”
It’s a good thing Chauncey doesn’t have the same sense of anatomical confidence as Kitty or else we might’ve seen way more of him than we actually wanted to this year. Billups started the year hurt, came back for three games, got hurt again, came back for two games, missed one, played in 14, missed three, played in one, missed some more again, and then returned for the final two games of the season. Seriously Chauncey, stop flashing me.
The There’s Always Money In the Banana Stand Award
The high pick-and-roll
Old reliable is the high pick-and-roll for this team. It’s the Clippers’ bread and butter; Blake Griffin sets a screen, Chris Paul dribbles around it and Griffin darts to the rim. Can’t we all just see it? The Clippers’ offense isn’t going particularly well and as he licks away at his ice cream sandwich, Vinny Del Negro screams at CP3, “There’s always money in the high pick-and-roll!”
The Carl Weathers Award for best acting
Chris Paul for his flop on DeMarcus Cousins
This play might be the most versatile in all of the Arrested Development Awards, considering you could also nominate it for an Inappropriate Actions With Cousins Award. Paul walks to Cousins, puts his hands on him, and flings himself away. Classic move. Unfortunately for CP3, he didn’t get the reputation call on Cousins for which he was looking. But you don’t want to fine him for that flop. He’s definitely the last cop you’re ever going to want to mess with in a darkened alley.
The Hung Jury Award for the moment we thought we would remember, but we won’t
Chris Paul clanking knees with J.J. Redick
Man, that Hung jury joke seems so dated now. When was the last time you thought about William Hung, the Tiny Tim wannabe who had his 15 minutes of fame after having an American Idol audition that was, well, let’s call it rather poor? Remember that game against Orlando when Paul’s knee collided with Redick’s? Paul missed 12 of the next 14 games and immediately, Clipper negativity broke loose. “Chris Paul has a history of knee injuries! Is this a huge problem? Will Paul come back? Is this the curse of Danny Manning??” Nope, it wasn’t. Actually, it meant nothing.
Best Reaction To a Mayon-egg
After DeAndre so courteously destroyed Brandon Knight and broke the Internet all at the same time, he saw Ann in the stands with a hard boiled egg and a tub of mayo. George Michael was impressed with her talents. DeAndre, apparently, was not. The irony is if you put her in Knight’s position, that dunk never happens. Ann is a wall.
The MR F Award
The Kevin Garnett Trade
Remember Rita, the beautiful, mentally challenged woman to which Michael was engaged? I’ll bet Michael was pretty happy he didn’t go through with that marriage. She seemed perfect at first: beautiful (played by Charlize Theron so that kind of solves that), British (the accent veils the IQ), and innovative (she thought of Bluthton, damnit!). But she had one major flaw that made Michael’s affection unsustainable. Garnett has those same positive traits – though I assume he’s not British. But he’s been hurt ever since those Bledsoe-for-KG talks died out. I’ll bet that, just like Michael, the Clippers are happy with the way the situation worked out.
The Stew Award because baby, you got a stew going
The 17-game winning streak
The Clippers realized there was still plenty of meat on that bone. They took it home, threw it in a pot, added some broth, a potato. Baby, they got a 17-game winning streak going.
The Creation of Adam Award
Chris Paul and Blake Griffin
From the quite talented Jesse Blanchard. For every obvious reason:
The J. Walter Weatherman Award for best lesson teaching
Tie: Dion Waiters, Arron Afflalo, Jason Smith, Goran Dragic, Nicolas Batum, Marcus Thornton, and Toney Douglas
As good as a 56-win season is, the Clippers lost a lot of games they probably should’ve won this year. Seven threes from Dion Waiters or Marcus Thornton most likely left Vinny Del Negro incredulously shouting, “Oh my God! That guy’s arm just came off!” Toney Douglas knows hitting a 35-foot dagger as the shot clock runs down is such a J. Walter Weatherman move. But then a guy like Nicolas Batum would turn around and drop four threes on the Clips in a triple-double effort. Same lesson, same result. There’s a reason George Sr. always called on J. Walter to help. Works every time.
The Tony Wonder Award for best hand gesture
The finger twirl
There was some competition here. There’s also that weird, wrist-twisting, air-groping, “turn it up” thing the bench does after a big play. But everyone loves a quality Ronny Turiaf finger twirl. That said, I’d be even more impressed if Turiaf, at the very least, could pull a piece of Wonder Bread out of his chest. To say that anyone but Tony Wonder could do that would be completely eRonnyous.