Friday, April 23, 2010

Must See TV?

This post is a document of my TV watching experience last night from the time of 9:34 PM to 11:50 PM.  This features commentary on 30 Rock as well as continuing my series of covering the First Round NBA Playoff Series between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Los Angeles Lakers.  Last night was a riveting Game 3.  Let's get to the remote control action:

- I am in crisis mode tonight.  I have to cover Game 3 of the Oklahoma City and L.A. series because I implosed this deadline and task on myself and also because I believe in the intriguing storylines that are inherent in the series and are developing as the games go along.  However, after about two months of reruns and laziness, 30 Rock has come back with two new episodes, the second of which will conflict with the beginning of the game.  So, beginning coverage of the Lakers/Thunder game may be shaky as I switch back and forth, but I will include some bonus 30 Rock commentary.

9:34 PM -30 Rock.  Great entrance by Tracey onto the episode as he is about to spray something up his nose.  This is followed by a classic Tracey and Kenneth non sequitor interaction.

9:35 PM - Souri with a nonsensica story about her fiancee being abducted by pirates.  I think they should just take her off the show.  She's not even that hot.

9:36 PM - Liz Lemon trying to prove she is fun, which is a somewhat repetitive storyline at this point, but you have to like a line like, "Ain't no party like a Liz Lemon Party, because a Liz Lemon Party is mandatory."

9:40 PM - Conan vs. Leno parody storyline with the Indian janitor Khonani. It is so blatant it is ridiculous.  "The Tonight Shift."

9:43 PM - 30 Rock is cracking hilarious lines at a rapid pace that is too hard to document.  Everything is working.  Tracey claims that everyone now say, "Surf Party, USA!" Also, Tracey's line about throwing a party is like throwing a frisbee is just perfect.  He tops it by calling Kenneth "K-Pax."


First Quarter

11:56 - Lakers win tip for first time in series.  Artest opens up by nailing an 18 footer.  He follows that up with a steal and then lays it in.  Quick 4-0 LAL lead.


9:50 PM - Jack Donaghy says that he is "innoventing."  Tracey's dog, Tracey Sr., gets out of the house, which causes Tracey to say, "Tracey Sr. took off fast.  He didn't want to live here."  Kenneth has to go as Tracey's proxy to save Liz Lemon's party.

9:52 PM - Conan/Khonani joke has turned even more heavy-handed. Kenneth with a classic line on the phone to Tracey: "Mr. Jordan, its Kenneth Parcell from work and friendship."


First Quarter

7:39 -OKC is in some early trouble.  The Lakers lead 15-6.  It seems like the Thunder are continuing their first quarter issues.  Kristic makes one of two free throws.  15-7 LAL.

6:57 - I am really liking the crowd in Oklahoma City. They are all dressed in blue, which is an effect and color I haven't really seen at a game.  The arena has a definite Golden State in 2007 feel.  But OKC continues to shoot poorly.

6:28 - Durant is missing all kinds of shots and so is Westbrook. They are both amped up for this game and are playing a little too fast.

6:04 - Durant glides down court with the ball and draws the foul on his shot.  He makes two free throws. 15-9 LAL.

5:42 - Fischer makes a three pointer.  He has been hitting pain in the ass shots like that all series. 18-9 LAL.

5:18 - Gasol drives in for a dunk - blocked.  He gets the rebound and dunks anyway. 20-9 LAL.

5:05 - Another wild shot by Westbrook on the other end. The whole team is really just too excited and they are pressing everything.

4:34 - OKC pushes the ball  (which seems to be their strategy tonight) and Westbrook flies for almost a second and finishes a huge dunk.  The crowd goes insane.  I go insane! What a dunk!  The Lakers answer immediately with a layup. However, Westbrook is immediately back down the court for a layup of his own.  22-13 LAL.  The Thunder are down, but this place is going crazy.

3:44 - Harden hits a three. That's exactly what the Thunder need.  22-16 LAL.

3:27 - Durant commits his second foul already.  He will have to come out of the game.  We'll see how this storyline develops.

3:12 - Fischer nails another three.  25-16 LAL.  You know how I feel about him.

2:34 - Shannon Brown with a nice shot. 27-16.  The Lakers are shooting well.

2:05 - Doug Collins is talking about how L.A. is trying to take away Jeff Green away in order to make just Durant and Westbrook beat them.  That seems to make sense as a strategy, because if Green is having a good game that means that the Thunder are usually winning. In the meantime, Harden hits another big three! 27-20 LAL.

49.9 - Harden with a drive and a lay-in.  He has 8 points already.  27-22 LAL.  Harden follows up the layup with a steal, drives the ball and is fouled before he shoots.

17.1 - OKC can't convert after the turnover and Odom gets the last shot of the quarter for L.A.  Not a good look from Lamar (Khloe? Her?). 27-22 after one quarter. OKC is making a run. Exciting first quarter and the building is just rocking.

Second Quarter

11:05 - Durant forces another shot.  He is 0-6 from the floor.  The rest of the team is doing fine, he does not need to force his offense.

10:37 - Harden drives and misses a layup.  Ibaka follows up with a dunk.  The crowd loves it.  If OKC makes a run here, this crowd may even top the G-State 2007 Effect. 27-24 LAL.

9:52 - Offensive foul on Farmar.  LA is out of synch.

9:35 - Durant posts and takes a fadeaway.  He misses again.  Farmar makes makes a shot on the other end.  29-24 LAL.

9:05 - Maynor misses a three and Ibaka can't save the rebound..

8:25 - Durant raises over Artest and makes his first shot. 29-26.  LA answers with a three from Artest.  32-26 LAL. OKC takes a timeout.

7:43 - LA forces Collison to take a terrible shot from the outside.  Gasol comes back and makes a nice little hook shot.  34-26.

6:49 - Harden drives, misses layup, but is fouled. He makes both free throws. 34-28. LAL.

6:35 - Odom makes a quick baseline hook.  36-28 LAL.

6:10 - Durant with an impressive drive, lays the ball up, misses, but is fouled. Makes two free throws. 36-30 LA.

5:39 - Harden at the line after a Kobe foul.  He makes one of two free throws.

5:13 - Westbrook steals a bad pass from Kobe and drives down court for a one handed exclamation dunk. 36-33 LAL.  The crowd is getting read to explode (oh, wait, not in OKC. I need an editor).

4:52 - Kobe nails a 25-foot three pointer to answer for his mistake.  39-33.  Gasol fouls Harden who has really gotten involved in this game.  Harden makes both free throws. 39-35 LAL.

4:31 - Kobe nails another three pointer.  42-35 LAL.  Westbrook comes back with a pullup jumper.  42-37 LAL.

3:56 - Ibaka with a block on Odom.  LA is in fastbreak mode.  Durant lays it in 42-39. LAL.

3:42 - Kobe with another three pointer.  He just has an answer every time OKC looks like they are going to take control of the game. 45-39 LAL.

3:00 - Durant stupidly commits an offensive foul.  That's his third.  We'll see him in the third quarter.

2:37 - Brown fouls Harden.  Harden makes two free throws. 45-41 LAL.  Harden has 14 points.

1:48 - Harden with a bad foul on Fischer who was shooting a three.  Fischer steps to the line and calmly makes all three foul shots.  48-41 LAL.

36.4 - Westbrook drives in and lays it up.  He has 10 points.  50-43 LA.

17.7 - Kobe misses a shot and OKC has a last shot opportunity.  Unfortunately, Kristic wastes it by taking a long two, which is of course misses. 

A very strange first half.  Besides the Lakers' hot start, both teams shot poorly. The crowd was just waiting to go crazy on an Oklahoma City lead, but the team was too excited to start the game.  Durant will adjust at the half and stop forcing his game so much. However, we will have to see if anyone can stop Kobe from making threes and having an answer for every OKC run.

Third Quarter

11:43 - Green drives in and takes an off balance shot.  Westbrook with the put back and is fouled.  He makes two free throws.  50-45 LAL.

11:14 - Kobe misses a runner and the long rebound goes to OKC.  They start the break and Jeff Green finishes with a smooth layup. 50-47 LAL.

10:43 - Sefalosha with an open three to tie! Nope.  He missed.

10:04 - Gasol knocks down a 16 footer in classic Gasol style. He just puts himself in the right spot and executes the way he is supposed to. 52-47 LAL.

9:19 - Kobe with a nice looking fadeaway.  54-47.

9:08 - Durant misses another shot and Kobe makes another fadeaway. 56-47.

8:43 - Kristic makes a long two.  He always provides a decent chip in.  Not the perfect center for this team, but he does the job for now.  56-49 OKC.

7:48 - Sefalosha knocks down a corner three.  That is absolutely huge for them.  56-52  LAL.

7:27 - Kobe to Gasol. Dunk. Elementary.

6:55 - Green misses a three.  At the other end, Gasol gets position on the post and makes a soft tip in.  60-52 LAL.

6:27 - Kobe with a wild shot, but Bynum is there to bail him out with the put back.  62-52 LAL.  I want to say at this point, that OKC looks like they are out of this game and that the Lakers are taking control, but so far in this series they always fight back once the Lakers try to put them away in the second half.

6:12 - Durant at the line and makes one of two free throws.  62-53 LAL.

5:51 - Gasol with a beautiful tear drop floater.  It was just perfect.  64-53 LAL.  But at the other end Sefalosha makes another corner three!  64-56.  If he is making that shot then OKC can win this game.  That is about my a millionth "if (blank player) does this, then OKC can win." They just need a third scorer!  They have Harden tonight if Durant gets hot.

5:19 - Kobe with a frame for frame Jordan jumper.  66-56 LAL. Durant comes back and gets a backdoor layup to go in.  He is fouled as well.  He makes the and one.  66-59 LAL.

4:36 - Westbrook drives to the basket and is fouled. I repeat, no one can guard him. Westbrook makes one of two free throws.  66-60 LAL.

4:00 - After an Artest miss, OKC goes to Durant.  Durant fights for a shot but misses.  However, Collison is there for the put back. KANSAS CLASS OF 2003 PRIDE!  66-62 LAL.

3:46 - Fischer nails a three. How many times is he going to answer back?  69-62 LAL.  But Westbrook is able to answer with a lightning fast layup. Of course.  69-64 LAL.

3:11 - Odom at the line.  Makes one of two free throws.  70-64 LAL.

2:56 - Westbrook fouls Brown who goes to the line and makes two free throws.  72-64 LAL.

2:44 - The game has hit a sloppy period.  Whistles are being blown a little too easily.  Artest fouls Durant and Durant goes to the line and makes both free throws.  72-66 LAL.

2:17 - Laker and Thunder exchange offensive fouls. Boo.

1:59 - Ibaka gets called for a bum goaltending violation, but Westbrook comes back with a nasty jam that we don't actually get to see live.  (When it is shown on instant replay, it is an absolute facial on Odom.)

1:18 - Lakers airball on their end and Harden comes back and nails a three.  He is coming up big for them tonight.  74-71 LAL.  The crowd is going nuts.  Fischer misses a three and Durant comes back, puts up the three...crowd waiting to lose it...he NAILS it!  Tie game.  The arena is literally out of control.  74-74.

39.1 - Gasol is at the line. Makes one of two free throws.  75-74 LAL.

16.8 - OKC is forcing the action at their end and Durant and Westbrook each put up a bad shot.  Odom misses a long three to end the quarter.  The fourth quarter is going to be terrific.

Fourth Quarter

11:35 - Kobe opens up and misses a 16 footer.  Westbrook drives and hits an open Ibaka from 17 feer.  He sinks it.  76-75 OKC.

11:01 - Offensive foul on Odom.  The crowd is losing it! I'm losing it!  We have possibly surpassed G-State 2007 levels here. Kobe fouls Durant! Sorry, sorry, I'll compose myself.

10:38 - Westbrook and Collison execute a nice give and go, but Westbrook misses the layup. Ibaka is there for the monster dunk to follow.  The crowd loves it.  78-75 OKC.  Kobe answers with an amazing shot.  78-77 OKC.

9:28 - Westbrook splits the defense and makes a tough banker.  80-77 OKC.

8:54 - Sloppy play from both teams and the loose ball ends up in Bynum's hands.  Bynum basically throws the ball in the basket and Collison fouls him. Bynum makes the and one.  80-80.

8:41 - Durant with an unorthodox shot. Nails it. 82-80 OKC.

8:20 - Kobe throws the ball away/ Harden on the break, dishes to Durant. Dunk!  84-80 OKC.

7:45 - Kobe with another bad shot.  Now he is pressing.  OKC brings the ball down, but Durant travels.

7:20 - Gasol with a 15 footer. Smooth as usual.  84-82 OKC.

6:21 - Westbrook with a laser pass inside to Collison underneath who is fouled by Gasol. Seriously, how did Westbrook actually make that pass?  Collison chokes both free throws though.

5:57 - Kobe bricks another three pointer.  He is the best closer in the game!  (I know, I'll cut him some slack.) Westbrook makes a long two.  86-82 OKC.

5:26 - Durant blocks Kobe.  Other end, Durant posts up Kobe and  hits a pretty baseline floater.  88-82 OKC.

4:44 - Kobe misses another shot.  He has fallen apart in this quarter.  Very strange to see. Reverting back to 2005-2006 Kobe.  Harden gets the rebound and he pushes it to Durant who makes an 18 footer that epitomizes "smooth."  90-82 OKC. Durant has 25 points and 19 rebounds. The Lakers are crumbling.

3:44 - Harden with a nice drive, but he misses the shot.  I like his confidence to make that move and take that shot in crunch time.

3:25 - Fischer with a big three.  90-85. I know I don't need to say anything.

3:03 - Westbrook answers with a HUGE three pointer.  93-85 OKC.

2:47 - Artest with a 21 footer.  93-87 OKC.

2:15 - Durant has to force a bad 3 that bounces off LA and OKC players.  The refs disagree about who it last touched and finally, the ball is going to the Lakers.  Odom nails a wide open three pointer.  93-90 OKC.

1:40 - Westbrook with a pull-up jumper and he is fouled by Derek Fischer.  He makes both free throws.  96-90 OKC. Didn't I tell you that he is the key? He leads all scorers with 26 points.

1:32 - Artest hits another long two.  96-92 OKC.

1:13 - Ibaka with a 16-18 footer and misses. That is not the shot they wanted.  At the other end, Ibaka fouls Gasol to stop him from making a layup.  We go to Craig Sager who shows us a noise meter that has reached level 109. I don't know what that means, but this place is loud!  Gasol makes two free throws.  96-94 OKC.

58.7 - Durant is fouled and makes both free throws. Clutch. 98-94 OKC.

39.0 - Kobe shoots a three and misses.  OKC gets the rebound and LA is not fouling.  Westbrook misses a pull-up jumper and Kobe takes the ball coast to coast for the lay-up.  Phil was right to not have them foul.  98-96 LA.

13.2 - Durant is fouled and goes to the line.  He makes both shots again.  That is absolutely clutch for a young player.  100-96 OKC.

01.5 - Hectic sequence with Farmar chucking a three pointer and then Artest chucking a three pointer.  Both shots miss and OKC wins the game. 

The arena is absolutely going crazy and we may definitely have ourselves a series here, although we can't say that until OKC ties it up.  We'll see if the Thunder learn from tonight (especially Durant and Westbrook) and start the next game without forcing their shots so much.  They have to control their energy and the crowd's excitment in order to play with composure to beat the Lakers.  They can definitely continue to try to run the Lakers out of the gym and that is most likely the way they are going to beat them - young legs.  Also, if both Green and Harden wake up, then this game is definitely going to seven games and the Thunder may even pull off the upset.

See, the storylines are there.  I can't wait unil Sunday.

Tonight or tomorrow I will be putting up a post with miscellaneous thoughts and some links as well as upcoming podcast schedule and description.

Stick with me, I will not let you down.

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