Y'all, it's official . . . we can shoot. Boxscore don't lie.
And I am touched, truly, to see that I was featured in tonight's game-thread poll. While it's true that I cheered every one of KD's 23 points, I want the PtR community to know I am a Spurs woman through and through. Durant's return to Austin was a pleasant diversion, but I managed to keep things in perspective. For a rational, objective assessment of Durantula's game against the Spurs, let's make the jump.
Well, that was fun! I had marvelous seats, and in a coincidence that must have been engineered by the FSM, I was seated right across one of the entrance tunnels from our own WVATS. And I have photographic proof! Here he is, the man himself, nattily attired in seersucker, waving to his
imaginary friends fans.
I've had a peek at the game thread, and you guys followed along pretty closely. I'll let Wayne handle the nuts and bolts and actual, you know, information in his recap. What I have to offer tonight before I pass out in exhaustion is a series of impressions.
- It was a dark and stormy night. . . . no, really. And the skies opened up while I was still in line outside, umbrella-less, of course. Once I finally made it to the turnstile, my printed-out ticket wouldn't scan. So I had to walk halfway around the building to the box office, in the rain, and then they wanted my ID, which I had left in my car, which was parked approximately 43 miles away, and I may have had a slight nervous breakdown at that point, but it seemed to work in my favor, as they finally deigned to let me in.
Here comes the rain again . . . falling on my head like a goddam memory . . . goddammit . . .
- We can shoot, like I said, but our defense is . . . well, I suppose the kind word would be "thin." But I'm not worried yet -- want to know why? Of course you do. I'm not worried yet because Blair didn't play until the fourth quarter, Timmy is not pushing on D at all (and you know he will once the season gets under way . . . or, you know, in February), and Pop still seems to be smiling an awful lot (for him).
- It was really weird to hear the occasional eruption of the "Texas!" "Fight!" "Texas!" "Fight!" chant. We even had a round of "OU!" "suuuuucks" "OU!" "suuuuucks" . . . And yet, despite the noticeable burnt orange tinge to the crowd, it was by FAR a Spurs audience there tonight. Timmy got huge cheers. Cries of "Manuuuuuu!" echoed whenever the Sickness touched the ball. I heard a lot of kids there all excited to be seeing the Spurs for the first time in person.
- The Thunder mascot is allegedly a bison named (I think) Rumble. But I submit to you, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, that he is actually a werewolf. Or, as Kirk Bohls of the Austin American-Statesman described him, "a cross between Chewbacca and Teen Wolf."
- Durant had a great first half, obviously, but he was not a happy camper in the second. He grew enormously frustrated with the fouls called against him. He barely played in the fourth quarter, which was sort of a bummer for the crowd (and perhaps for him). Here's a picture I took right after he got called for foul number four:
KD has a sad.
- I got to hear the DeJuan Blair effect. As others have noted, when Blair grabs a rebound he manages to do it in such a way that the ball just smacks into his hand. He has his own sound effects, people. It's thrilling.
- Something else about Blair: As much as the crowd cheered for Durant, they leapt to their feet in sustained ecstasy only one time--when Blair followed a steal with a monstrous dunk. Pop didn't look inclined to bench him in the slightest, either.
And there I must leave you, because I have to be at work in 5 hours, and I am a lamer. I've seen the Spurs three times this preseason, and each time I have come away almost fighting back this crazy, rash feeling of . . . optimism. Optimism and joy. When I look at the guys on the court, they are so clearly enjoying themselves. I'll post more pictures tomorrow, and you'll see what I mean. When a team looks this relaxed and yet enthusuiastic, good things inevitably follow. I'm sorry, I'm going there. We're going to have a hell of a season.