Every morning, we'll give you five things from the night before in the NBA to start your day.
1: Oh Orlando....
I really do feel bad for Orlando fans. You're getting pulled in a million different directions. The dizzying Dwight Howard saga covered the typical roller coaster ride of a season that has come to define this team. They are the third seed, and they'll probably stay there. But some nights, they don't look like a third seed. Last night, they barely looked like a 13th seed.
Dwight Howard, pardon the pun, pulled a disappearing act... shooting the ball only SEVEN times on his way to a 12 point, 5 rebound night. That is inexcusable on every possible level. It's Dwight's fault for not being aggressive enough to demand the ball or polished enough to get good shots even when he's guarded well. It's his teammates' fault for jacking 3 after 3 after 3 instead of working it inside to Dwight more often. It's Stan Van Gundy's fault for running an offense that encourages a bombs away approach. And it's Otis Smith's fault for giving Stan a group of players that give him few other options.
Say what you want, but the Magic have squandered too many opportunities to be great, and it's everyone's fault. Last night wasn't just one of those bad losses that even the great teams can have and can brush off. Last night was part of Orlando's pattern, and why a first-round exit wouldn't surprise anyone.
2: Congrats, Nellie
Don Nelson tells ESPN that he got the call to the Hall:
Nelson, a three-time coach of the year and the NBA's all-time winningest coach, said he got the call Wednesday morning after being snubbed for several years. The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame will officially announce the 2012 class on Monday at the NCAA Final Four in New Orleans.
I'll always love Don Nelson for giving us "Nellie-ball." It may not have achieved the ultimate goal of winning a title, but damn is it fun to watch. Hell, the name is even fun to say.
Congrats on getting in Nellie. I'm betting that's going to be one hell of a speech.
Rajon Rondo with the trickery (watch Paul Millsap)