In an intriguing twist, the Clippers might benefit more from losing in this matchup of playoff-bound teams.
Yeah, and Elton Brand might benefit from having to match up against Billy Barty in the post instead of Bill Russell.
Elton gets the Good Camper Award and an early bid for Peekskill Mayor with his politic response to the tank question:
"Well, I know I'm going out to give optimum effort," Brand said. "That's the only way I know how to play, and nothing is going to change that. Yeah, we know we have home-court [advantage] against Denver, but you still have to play hard."
I don't doubt EB's sincerity for a second, which is why it's all the more imperative for Mike Dunleavy not to let Elton Brand anywhere near Fed Ex Forum tonight. A disoriented cabbie, a bad slice of pizza, a hotwired alarm clock at the Madison Memphis - whatever it takes to keep our lunch pail guys off the floor.
Elton, we love your effort, your resilience, your 110%. These are your finest, cracker jack qualities. But we can't tolerate this kind of sportsmanship when the season is on the line. If you're going to be a disruptive force on the floor with your "optimum effort," we just assume you take Corey's epidural and go for a nice two hour schvitz.
Meanwhile, the Grizz and affiliates are shocked...shocked, I tell you...that the Clips have been exerting less than maximum effort over the past week. Mike Miller is offended:
Teammate Mike Miller sounded as though not trying to win any game is a sin.
"As long as I've played the game, I've never tried to lose a game. That's not going to change," Miller said when asked about tonight's matchup with the Clippers. "You just can't turn it on when you get to the playoffs."
Get back to me, Mike, after Josh Howard has been in your grill for the better part of the week. For what it's worth, Grizz fans are already conceding the (6).
Personally, I don't know what all the fuss is about in Memphis. Growing up in Atlanta during the ‘Nique Era, I never saw Fratello win a crucial game he needed to - not with home court advantage, nor with the other team on the ropes.
Still, John R's proposal for tonight's game makes the most sense. Each team should have to shoot at their own basket. Of course with the eight second backcourt rule, they'll have to sink a shot in a hurry, lest they turn the ball over to the opposing team - who will then have eight to shoot at their own basket. It'll be like those old LMU teams from the late 80s or the pixel-blocked uniformed Nugs teams under Doug Moe.
Just lose, baby.