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Charlotte vs Seattle
The Bobcats attacked the basket early in this one, taking an early 7-2 advantage lead by Raymond Felton who found Sean May and Matt Carroll for easy baskets. The Sonics came back behind Mateen Cleaves and made the score 7-6 Charlotte. But again Charlotte attacked the basket and took a 14-6 lead with half the quarter played. Mateen Cleaves would go in for a lay-up and have it ricochet off the back part of the rim but Noel Felix had an awesome follow up which lead to a 16-6 Seattle run to end the quarter. The Sonics would take a 23-20 lead going into the second.
The Sonics came out in the second and immediately turned the ball over which lead to a Matt Carroll score. The Sonics would answer with a Robert Swift score. The two teams traded leads thought-out the first two thirds of the quarter, until a 7-2 spurt by the Bobcats put them up 36-31. Seattle would turn the ball over again and the Bobcats would run with it, Felton would hit a three and get fouled, hit the free throw making a 4 point play and giving the cats a 40-31 lead. This play turned the momentum of the game in Charlotte favor on the ensuing possession Bernard Robinson would score, then after a Noel Felix score Robinson would hit two free throws and get another jumper as the Cats went on a 14-8 run open the game up. The Cats lead 50-39 at the half.
The Sonics came out aggressive in the second half, they started it by throwing an ally-oop to Noel Felix who had another powerful jam, and took control of momentum by forcing turnovers on 3 of 5 Bobcat possessions and causing Charlotte Point guard Raymond Felton to have to go to the bench in foul trouble. The Sonics would go on a 8-0 run to bring the game to 54-49. Jermaine Blackburn would get a jumper to extend the Charlotte lead to 7. But the Sonics behind Aaron Miles and Rashard Byrd who each scored 4 points and closed the Bobcats lead to 1. But Bernard Robinson and Tommy Smith would answer extending the Bobcats run to 66-59 at the end of the quarter.
The Sonics came out with another run to start the 4th, an ally-oop from Cleaves to Byrd and a Larry OíBannon three pointer brought the game to 66-65 with 8 minutes to go. After a Charlotte turn over Seattle looked poised to take the lead but an onslaught of offensive fouls killed the Supersonic charge. Not only did offensive fouls kill the sonics but so did defensive and loose ball fouls, giving the Bobcats a total of 14 free throws in which they would hit 12 of them. The Bobcats would win the game 87-79.
Players to watch
Bernard Robinson: He seems to be getting better as the review goes on and has really hit big shots during Bobcat runs which helps his team take the lead. Needs work on not committing stupid fouls but other then that he has been solid.
Raymond Felton: He finally played an injury free game, and did a great job. He is a very skilled athletic guard who can kill a defense with his dribble penetration, passing or scoring. He should be a very good player on day in the NBA.
Matt Carroll: Heís really been one of the biggest surprises in this years review. He can shoot from all over and play defense too. He is very streaky however and his entire game depends on his shooting, if he is shooting the ball well he plays very well, but if he isnít he doesnít play to well.
Noel Felix: Honestly this guy has been an unsung hero for the Sonics thought-out the review. He is strong and powerful, but also does a lot of little statless things that help his team.
Kaniel Dickens: He is another player that has been doing better as the review goes on. But Iím not entirely sold on him yet. He is a good shooter is an OK defender but doesnít do the little things it takes to win ball games.
Mateen Cleaves: He is playing like he did in college, which could be good for the Sonics with the loss of Antonio Daniels he could fill their vacant back up point guard role.
Mavericks vs Spurs
The Spurs scored the first 4 points of the game, before the Mavs made it 4-3. The Spurs then scored 5 straight points taking a 9-3 lead when Pavel Podkolzine took an entry pass and layed it up. The score stayed 9-5 for a few minutes before Melvin Saunders took control, he would hit jump shots and lay-up thought-out the quarter as he single-handedly kept the spurs in the game. He was about the only Spurs player who could hit a broadside of a barn during the first quarter. Britton Johnson missed all 4 of his attempts as he continued being cold from the other night. The Mavericks didnít fair much better, except for Podkolzine the Mavericks shot 1-11, with Podkolzine they shot a combined 4-15 in the first. The score was knotted up at 16 after the first.
The Second quarter wasnít much better, though Dallas was able to go inside to center DJ MBenga who scored 7 points in the quarter. The Spurs were kept in the game by Ondrej Starosta and Andre Barrett who seemed to score at the most opportune time for the Spurs. With the Mavs lead 23-22 Britton Johnson got his first points of the game on two free throws. Melvin Saunders who kept the Spurs in the game during the first quarter seemingly disappeared for the Spurs in the second, he only scored 1 point. With the Spurs up 28-26 the Mavericks finished the quarter on a 4-0 free throw run to take a 30-28 low scoring affair into the locker room.
The Spurs started the third quarter on a 5-0 run by Andre Barrett and Kendall Dartez taking a 33-30 advantage. But Michael Harris of Dallas hit a jumper, then stole the ball for a lay-up. Harris would have a spectacular third quarter scoring 13 points and playing great defense on Johnson who didnít hit a field goal in the third quarter. With Dallas up 38-35 Andre Barrett would reel off 4 consecutive points and the Spurs would re-take the lead. But it was Harris who hit a three giving Dallas back the lead. The two teams would teeter-totter the lead for the entire third quarter, which was a lot more productive then the previous two quarters had been, but the Spurs would take a one point advantage at the end of three.
The Spurs continued the same style of play they had been playing in the third quarter into the 4th, Dallas on the other hand played much like they did in the first. The Spurs would score the first 8 points in the quarter and take a commanding 62-53 lead with 7 minutes to play. The Spurs would go on a 25-14 run during the entire 4th quarter blowing the game wide open. Dallas tried to make a run at it with about 4 minutes to play cutting the Spurs lead to 70-61 but Britton Johnson would hit his first shot of the game giving the Spurs the 12 point cushion as they cruised to victory.
Players to watch:
Melvin Saunders: Had a fantastic game, he took good shots and hit open ones. There isnít much I can say bad about him as he was like a life persevere for the Spurs in this game. He does need to work on his fouling, he reaches a lot.
Britton Johnson: His shooting has been off the last couple of nights, but he has picked his game up in other aspects, tonight he grabbed 9 rebounds. This shows teams he has a lot of heart and fortitude to help his team win. I noticed many scouts looking at him and taking notes, so donít be surprised if he gets a contract somewhere real soon.
Josh Asselin: Again he came out hustling and did what ever he could to help his team. He seems to get a lot of easy baskets by being in the right place at the right time; which shows he is a smart player.
Sergei Karanlov: This guy hasnít got a prayer of making the NBA, the Spurs coaching staff donít even like his play. He is lanky, and doesnít do anything any other half way decent player canít do. Karanlov probably will be a summer league veteran for a few years before he actually tries and fails to make the Spurs roster. ďWhat is that?Ē-Greg Popavich. And that sums up Karanlov precisely.
Pavel Podkolzine: he had a decent game but after the first quarter he didnít do much of anything. He still needs to figure out how to grip the ball up high, otherwise guards knock it away from him.
Michael Harris: after many unimpressive outing Harris finally did something. He has a nice release and can score on broken plays, but like me many people are cautious about his playing, he had one good game and like we all know ďone game does not a good player makeĒ. Harris will probably be best suited to playing in a league like the USBL or ABA. I think even the competition in the NBDL may be to tough for him to excel in.
David Logan: Someone needs to sit this guy down and make him watch Magic Johnson and John Stockton to show him what a pass is. Logan is a back-up point guard who played 15 minutes, took 10 shots and to my recollect didnít pass the ball once. If you put all the bad qualities of Allen Iverson with no good qualities: youíd get David Logan. I highly doubt Logan will be playing in the US next season, he probably goes to Europe were they like shoot first point guards who canít shoot.
DJ Mbenga: probably had his worst game of the revue tonight, but it was still very solid. For a change of pace his Offensive was better then his defense; which was still pretty good. Mbenga did have a couple of nice blocks, and some intimidation misses to his credit.
I left during the Jazz Hawks game so I donít have a review for that game.