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Oh Pop, You So Crazy!

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++ I think this qualifies as news: the Spurs lost last night. Who to blame, who to blame? The defense was at least adequate (the 38 point fourth quarter was a function of slowing the game down trying to make up a 7 point deficit and Larry Hughes making some real tough shots); the Spurs trapped Lebron off of just about every pick and roll, forcing him into only 19 points on 7-17 shooting. They allowed 11 offensive boards, but that's going to happen when you're scrambling out of traps and playing a lot of zone (not to mention Zyrdunas and Varejao are good offensive rebounders).

Let's just blame Manu, who missed 7 of his 8 shots, many of them ill-advised 3s. Parker had 26 on 11-18, many of them coming at the end of the fourth. Resident Parker haters will criticize him for padding his stats, but maybe getting the quick 2 was P.J.'s game plan? And who better to get the quick 2 than (maybe) the fastest guy in the NBA? Let's not ignore the facts that he didn't miss a layup in that stretch, and the Spurs were one missed free throw from having a chance to tie the game at the end of regulation.

++ Pop got thrown out in the fourth, running out on the court to protest the lack of a foul call on the ever bitching Tim Duncan:

"I felt there was an inconsistent whistle," said Duncan, who finished 6-of-15. "They got more points at a time which calls and shots were starting to go their way."

Pop, being beautifully sarcastic, had this to say about his demonstrative protest:

"I didn't want there to be any equivocation on the official's part as to whether he should boot me or not," Popovich said. "I wanted to make it easy for him because that can be embarrassing for an official if he's not sure if you want to go or not," Popovich said. "I thought he did a great job."

++ Hey, Lebron James is sort of sticking up for Bowen!:

"I'm not sure why a lot of guys have complained, but he hasn't done anything to make me complain," James said. "I don't complain too much about dirty play because dirty play (means) a lot of guys are physical. And I like physical play, so it's not a problem."

Wait, is he saying that Bowen is dirty but he doesn't mind? Or that Bowen isn't dirty, but even if he was he wouldn't mind? Or that he likes it dirty? With sweaty mens? <Dick Enberg>Oh my!</Dick Enberg>