HANG TIME NEW JERSEY — For NBA fans like us, there’s nothing better than League Pass. Having the ability to watch every game every night (and then again the next day) is heaven.
Of course, with local broadcasts, you get local broadcasters, which can be good and bad. It can be good, because these guys know their teams better than most national broadcasters. It can be bad, because these guys love their teams more than most national broadcasters. And they’re usually not afraid to show that love.
Air Check is where we highlight the best and worst of NBA broadcasts.
He must work on these lines
Sixers analyst Malik Rose has become an Air Check favorite and you may recall his Hawesome call from a couple of seasons ago. Well, Rose is back with another great line, this time using poetry instead of a pun after Marcin Gortat gives Spencer Hawes two free points with a major blunder.
“Sometimes you’re hot, sometimes you’re Gortat.”
Classic. Hat tip to The 700 Level for tweeting that one out when it happened. You have to wonder if Rose’s game prep includes coming up with one-liners for the Sixers’ opponents.
“Let’s see, we got the Wizards tonight.
“John Wall … didn’t get the call, lost the ball, had a rough fall.
“Hmmm…. Bradley Beal has lost his zeal…
“Uh oh, Eric Maynor, better call the trainer!
“Close, but not quite….
“Every day he doesn’t play, Otto Porter‘s career is getting shorter.”
Hyperbole in Hollywood
If you were watching that great Wolves-Clippers game on Monday night, you may have heard Ralph Lawler go a little over the top in regard to Chris Paul‘s steal in the final minutes …
Lawler called it the best steal he’s ever seen. Yeah, you could say that’s hyperbole … or maybe Lawler just doesn’t watch a lot of basketball, missed the 1987 Eastern Conference finals, and missed all the contact on the play (which he acknowledged upon seeing the replay).
Of course, Lawler’s has a partner in hyperbole in analyst Michael Smith. Check out the following calls from a preseason game against the Blazers.
First, after DeAndre Jordan gets fouled on a fast break, Smith lauds Jordan’s ability to run the floor…
Smith: “That is so difficult to do. I don’t even know if it’s fair to say that it’s more difficult for a big man to do that than a small man. But people would say that often, that it’s harder for a big to shoot free throws or it’s harder for a big to run and catch on the fly. I don’t subscribe to that, because D.J. runs like he was 6-foot-2 and catches like he’s 6-foot-2 on the fly.”
OK. He runs well and can catch the ball. Fine. But then Smith takes it over the top…
“Of course, he’s 6-11 and I think he’s the best running big the game maybe has ever seen.”
Lawler: “Settle down, Mike.”
Smith: “Can you name one better, partner?”
Anthony Davis. Just sayin’.
Later in the same quarter, Jamal Crawford missed a pull-up, mid-range jumper…
“Jamal Crawford,” Smith says, “will make that shot 8 times out of 10.”
So Jamal Crawford shoots 80 percent on mid-range shots. OK.