The contentious playoff series between the Mavericks and Nuggets may have ended on Wednesday, but the off-court drama surrounding it continues. Yesterday, Nuggets coach George Karlstoked the flames surrounding Carmelo Anthony’s fiancee’s fight club video, keeping that brouhaha brewing long past its expiration date. Today, the original Nugs-Mavs offcourt drama, the feud between Mark Cuban and Kenyon Martin’s mom got another jolt, keeping it out ahead of the pack.
Cuban may have thought that a crummy blogpology (buzzword!) would be enough to end the tiff between himself and Kenyon Martin’s mom, but almighty NBA commish David Sternhas decreed otherwise.
It was billed as the hockey playoff series everyone wanted to see, and for six games it was. With three overtimes in that spell — and two other games that easily could have been pushed into extra frames, too — the Capitals-Penguins second rounder felt like an instant classic heading into Game 7. All it needed was a respectable finale.
It didn’t get one.
Instead, Pittsburgh’s experienced markmen carved up Washington’s rookie goalie, Simeon Varlamov, jumping out to a 5-0 lead before finishing with a 6-2 victory in D.C., which spent much of the third period reminiscing about a strong season and wondering what might havce been.
That made for a deflating end to Alex Ovechkin’s second playoff campaign, with Washington’s transcendent star thoroughly outshone by Pittsburgh star Sidney Crosby, whose two goals and an assist paced Pittsburgh’s stunning Game 7 rout.
In fact, while conventional wisdom holds there’s nothing like a Game 7 in hockey, this graph from the WASHINGTON POST’s writeup of the game tells you all you need to know about what got the Caps into trouble:
Varlamov wasn’t totally to blame; he didn’t get much help from his teammates, who were outplayed in almost every sense of the word. They took bad penalties. They were beaten to loose pucks. They made mental miscues when the team could least afford one.
The game began with Ovechkin being stopped by Marc-André Fleury on a breakaway after 3 minutes 1 second with a brilliant glove save. It was all downhill from there for the Capitals.
There you go, and there go the Caps in a game which could have cemented Washington’s status as a burgeoning hockey town. Instead, it’ll just be a quiet one until training camp starts this summer.
Only Dirk Nowitzki really showed up for Dallas, which is nice considering the fact that his pregnant fiancee most definitely couldn’t be there. And while the final scoreline shows a 14-point victory for Denver, it felt bigger than that, since the Nuggets opened up an equal 14-point lead by halftime and never really looked back.
Not to be overshadowed by the exploits of his own team on the court, Dallas owner Mark Cubanhad his apology to the mother of Kenyon Martin labeled as insincere by none other than K-Mart himself. And he had company, with Carmelo also questioning whether Cuban could possibly be sincere with an apology posted in the middle of the night on his personal blog. In fact, while we’re at it, I’d like to apologize to my second grade art teacher. I really didn’t mean to spill all the macaroni for those zebra designs on the floor, and I really shouldn’t have laughed so loud when they flew all over the floor and you had to throw them out. If I knew how little money you made, I never would have laughed.
Case in point: Last fall, former Gators quarterback Shane Matthews, a proud, former greasy-haired Florida alum, offered up one of the stronger rebukes of Meyer’s game strategy after UF’s lone loss, to Ole Miss.
At the time, Matthews called the Rebels’ man-to-man defense on Florida’s wide receivers an outright affront to the team’s passing game, questioning why Meyer wouldn’t take advantage of what seemed like mismatches.
That led to a stern speech at a Gator Club (read: really rich alumni) rally where Meyer said former players who criticized any part of the program could buy a ticket to a game, not hob nob in the team’s athletic offices.
Needless to say, that’s made plenty of headlines because it was uttered by Urban Meyer, since anything he says at this point ends up on a front page in any state with an SEC school.
For his part, Matthews is just amazed that the entire episode has become such a media flashpoint.
“I’m as Gator as there is and very supportive of the program,” he said on ESPN Wednesday. “You can be critical of a coaching decision here and there, but that’s just being a Monday morning quarterback, everyone does that.”
He’s that, and a well-known radio host, so it is kind of his job to critique coaches’ decisions. It’s not like he’s some Florida high school football coach. Maybe Meyer can consider that the next time he launches a diatribe, or maybe not. After all, Urban Meyer does what Urban Meyer thinks he should, when he thinks he should.
• Just when you thought things might finally be looking promising for the Eagles, one of Andy Reid’s sons goes and gets himself sent back to the slammer. Nice work Garrett Reid. Donovan McNabb doesn’t send his condolences.
Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is used to having his mouth get him in trouble since he entered the NBA. He’s repeatedly been fined by David Stern for complaints about the officials, other teams, and life in the NBA in general. On Saturday night he may have taken things just a bit too far when he apparently told Lydia Moore, the mother of Denver Nuggets forward Kenyon Martin, that her son was a thug and a punk.
(”They’ll never recognize me in this brilliant disguise!”)
Not surprisingly, Martin was a bit upset about this. You don’t treat somebody’s mother that way, let alone the night before Mother’s Day. Mark responded by telling the media he was “going to take care of it“, and that he was more of a “face-to-face dude.” Well it seems that Cuban wasn’t really all that excited about a face-to-face conversation with Kenyon because he posted an apology on his blog yesterday.
Tales of Mark Cuban’s temper tantrum after the brutal beat the officiating gods gave his Mavericks in Dallas Saturday night continue to grow. It’s not enough that he stomped around the court and shouted at the referees or that he reached out to shove a cameraman that irritated him with all his conversion of oxygen to carbon dioxide.
Cuban also felt it necessary to approach Lydia Moore, Kenyon Martin’s mama, and inform her that her son is a “thug” and (if Martin’s nearby agent is correct) also a “punk”. Let’s just hope Kenyon’s sister Tamara Martin-Harris hasn’t heard about this yet; she’s protective enough of her baby brother to put Cuban in a deep hole.
When DALLAS MORNING NEWS sports blogger Tim McMahon — the very Tim McMahon who found himself banned from the Mavericks locker room a little over a year ago — postulated a scenario that would land budding all-time great point guard Chris Paul in Dallas a week ago, few people took notice. Well, they should have. According to a source very close to the blogger, he didn’t pull the scenario out of thin air, he pulled it directly from the mouth of Mark Cuban himself, who gave the specs of a potential deal during one of his infamous stair-stepping impromptu press conferences.
(Next year, they could just switch jerseys!)
The scenario goes something like this: The Hornets desperately need to clear payroll because A) they’re hurting for money like crazy and B) they’re facing an enormous luxury tax hit for the contracts of Peja Stojakavic, Tyson Chandler and, most notably, Paul. Making matters worse, Paul’s four-year, max-dollar contract extension is about to kick in, which will make him far too expensive for the Hornets to afford.
We hear sports blurbs all the time about pro athletes signing million-dollar contracts & pro owners building billion-dollar stadiums. But have you ever stopped to think what a million dollars actually looks like? Or a billion? Or a trillion?
(”Did somebody say … ONE MILLION DOLLARS?!?!?!”)
Wonder no more, as the website DELIVERIES GALORE (via a tip from TRUE HOOP) delivers a fun visual comparison of how such monstrous monetary amounts appear when presented in smaller denominations.