Saturday, June 2, 2012

Spurs Update: Western Conference Finals

The scene changed dramatically for game-3, as a seemingly half-dejected OKC Thunder crowd outside Chesapeake Energy Arena welcomed the San Antonio Spurs for game-3, and the feeling was that of confident reserve for Spurs' fans. I said it over a week ago that if we're gonna lose a game, it's gonna be this one. Barkley thought so too, but both Kenny and Shaq picked Spurs.

Priority #1 was withstanding the overwhelming crowd that is present in this Arena. As the game began, OKC went up 8-0 before Popovich had even sat down, it seemed like. So timeout Spurs, and now let's begin for real. Everyone would get quickly into the scoring mix. By the end of

The Sea of Blue - Img Source: 2012 NBAE (Photo by Layne Murdoch/NBAE via Getty Images)

the 1st-Q 6 Spurs and 6 Thunder players had scored, and the score was 24-22, Spurs.

The advantage continued for the Thunder, however, as their shots kept going in, but ours were just a little off. After almost 8 minutes had gone by, the Spurs had only scored 8 (four from Manu), while the Thunder had scored just about every time down the floor. The lead grew quickly to 14, 46-32, and it would be all we could do with a few subs off the bench, to stay in it as best we could. Durant hit a bunch of FTs, and a difficult jumper, while Tony & Manu kept us in the game. But at the horn, the Thunder had outscored us 32-17 in the 2nd-Q. To me it seemed as if Pop wasn't realizing the adjustments they made after game-2 were working. So we all await Pop's own classic halftime adjustments, down 54-41. Thabo Sefolosha assigned to Tony Parker was one of the main adjustments - Tony only had 10 thus far.

Then Sefolosha began the 2nd-half hitting a three of his own - his second of the game. Then after Danny Green hit a three, and Tony nailed a jumper, OKC would go on a 16-5 run over almost 8 minutes. During this time Sefolosha's play was incredible: Steals, defense.. frustrating Tony with his length. ...And we were down 22!! 73-51 with 2:31 left in the 3rd.

Obviously the crowd was going INSANE by this time, and I think it was apparent on the faces of most of the Spurs that we were probably gonna take this one on the chin. Then Jack hit two straight threes - but Thabo came back with another one of his
Thabo was key - Img Source: 2012 NBAE (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)

own, and the 4th-Q stage was set with the Thunder up by 18.. 78-60.

Jackson opened the 4th with another three, closing to within 15, but then OKC would score 8-striaght. Wow. Now down 23, Pop appears to have given up WAYYY too early by putting in James Anderson (who had actually earned a few earlier minutes), along with Patty Mills and DeJuan Blair, who's been in the doghouse ever since Boris Diaw happened. Neal & Anderson pulled us to within 18 again with 8:52 on the clock, but then OKC ran off another 9-straight and pretty much putting all the nails in the coffin, 95-68. But there's still 6:35 left, and aren't we the top-scoring team in the league?

It didn't matter.. Tony, Tim, & Manu never saw another second. Sefolosha would continue to impress as he'd finish with 19 & 6 along with SIX steals. DeJuan Blair actually showed something most weren't prepared for - in 10 minutes, he scored 10 on 5 of 7 shooting, with 6 rebounds. Yeah, Pop, you should've tried him sooner.

The game was lost late in the 2nd-Q, but I give this one to Pop for not recognizing that all the adjustments they made were working, and working well. And it took him too long to make some changes himself. I guess when you win 20-straight games, you start to be a little reluctant to make changes. We had wayy too many turnovers (21), only 18 assists, but we failed to match their energy that lasted throughout 48 minutes. Here's ESPN's boxscore..

Game-4 Saturday night should be better.

Helpful Kitty

Via / Source

Frozen in Time

Keith Richards, James Brown, and John Belushi

Photographer unknown / Via
- (NSFW)

Paradise in Thailand

Via / Image Source: Christopher Cypert

The Ritz-Carlton at Phulay Bay, Thailand..

Here's a little Satriani Set

Always With Me, Always With You (Surfing with the Alien - 1987)


Hill of the Skull & Circles (Surfing with the Alien - 1987)

Midnight & Echo (Surfing with the Alien - 1987)

Flying in a Blue Dream (Title track 1989)

Source (HotS --> FiaBD)

And the best for last...

Cryin' (The Extremist - 1992)


Friday, June 1, 2012

Presidential Poker

Click to enlarge!!

Images Source: Andy Thomas - with permission / Via
- (NSFW)

I love it! Frozen in time, and yet perfectly portrayed. No way we would ever see something like this if not for a few handful of incredible artists today. Kudos to Mr. Andy Thomas! Brilliant!

Please check out Andy Thomas dot com!


Via - (NSFW)

Health Care?


Teachers' salaries?



Fool 'Em

Via - (NSFW)

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Five Finger Death Punch - Death Before Dishonor


War Party

Via - (NSFW)

The Beauty of the New Zealand Coast

Image Source / Via - (NSFW)

Pop Cleaning


Metallica - Intro & Blackened (LIVE)

from 1989


Spurs Update: Western Conference Finals

Game-2 of the Western Conference Finals took place in San Antonio Tuesday night, as Oklahoma City would try to even up the 1-0 series.

The Spurs jumped out to a 6-0 lead as Danny Green finally made his first shot of the series. By the time half the quarter was gone, Tony had 6, Green had 5, and the Spurs' lead was 15-7. We got off to a MUCH better start this time around. Kevin Durant and Tony Parker would effectively trade buckets for a few possessions. Spurs would then hold OKC scoreless for two minutes, while Timmy got his stuff going. The last minute of the 1st-Q saw OKC pour in 7 to the Spurs' 6, and the break at 28-22, San Antonio. 1st-Q points: Tony-10, Durant-12. Wow!

After Derek Fisher opened the 2nd-Q with a three, the Spurs would go on a 14-4 run for the first half of the 2nd-Q (all 4 Thunder points by James Harden). Five different Spurs scored those 14 points, Tony Parker or Tim Duncan not included! So with the 13-pt. lead (42-29) most of both team's starters returned. The Thunder would slowly close this lead to 11 by the end of the half, but Tony netted 7 more, and then Tim Duncan did this on Serge Ibaka:


So after a Durant three, Timmy would hit two FTs, and then close the half with a sweet block on a Westbrook layup attempt: 55-44.

The 3rd-Q saw the scoring-fest commence. Both offenses scored at will for a few minutes, including 3 Spurs' threes by Leonard, Green, and Diaw - and one from Westbrook. After only 3½ minutes had gone by, the Spurs had scored 13 to the Thunder's 8, and the score was quickly 68-52. The Thunder would keep fighting but it was getting quickly out of hand. With a 75-58 lead, and with 23 points already, Tony Parker lined-up one of the most wide-open threes in NBA history:


This forced a Thunder timeout, but as soon as play resumed, Boris Diaw hit a layup to put the Spurs up 80-58, the largest lead of the game.

Kevin Durant & Manu would then begin demanding the ball, but after OKC closed the 22-pt. lead to 14, Hack-a-Splitter began. Tiago made 5 of 10, and OKC scored 6, so they made up 1 measly point. Timmy entered for Tiago, and we'd close out the 3rd-Q 92-76.

The Thunder are a good team, so no one expects them to crumble. They kept fighting, and went on their own 10-3 4th-Q run, despite a clutch Gary Neal three. With James Harden leading this charge, and down 95-86, Harden, Durant, and Westbrook
A rare growl from a charged Manu - Image Source (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

would get to the line time in and time out. But for most of the 4th-Q either Manu, Tony, or Timmy would respond to the Thunder closing the lead to within 7 or so, and then extend it back to 9, or 11. Tony & Manu continued to get their way when in charge of creating shots. Eight is as close as the Thunder would get, and the Spurs did everything they had to to close it out 120-111.

Tony had 34-8-3 on 16 of 21 shooting! He owned this game, and no one has yet to figure out how to stop him, and our pick-n-roll when Tony's on his game. Duncan had 11 & 12, but Manu & Kawhi had 20 & 18 respectively. Kawhi also added 10 boards. The Thunder's big-3 all got theirs (88 points on 30 of 54 shooting.. Yeah that's 56%). Unfortunately the rest of the team shot 7 of 34 (21%). Here is ESPN's boxscore..

That's 20-straight. TWENTY! Game-3 is Thursday night in OKC at 8pm Central. One more win would tie the Lakers' 2001 record

Tony had a monster game-2 - Image Source (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

of 11-straight to begin the playoffs in any season. It's gonna be a MUST-win for OKC, and I think they could very well win it. But then again, I'll still be a little surprised if they can figure out how to stop us, and especially Tony Parker.


Via - (NSFW)

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Ohhh the Similarities


Image Source (Photo by Layne Murdoch/NBAE via Getty Images)

Redefining Marriage

Via - (NSFW)

Monday, May 28, 2012

Spurs Update: Western Conference Finals

The WCF are finally under way! It's about time, as both these teams have been sitting around waiting - thanks to the NBA powers-that-be forced each of us to play a back-to-back in the playoffs, on the opponents' home court, while both these teams had respective home court advantage in each series. OK that's the last time you'll have to hear that rant from me.

The Oklahoma City Thunder brought their young & talented squad to the AT&T Center for game-1 Sunday night. As usual the hype was sort-of overblown. That doesn't mean I wasn't excited - I just try to stay away from any & all media bias, especially when it comes to my Spurs. For the last several days Spurs fans
Durant & Westbrook are two young NBA stars - Image Source (AP Photo/Eric Gay)

have come out of the woodwork, from under rocks, and from universes far away, but it happens every single season that we do really well. This is the 11th time the organization has been to the conference finals, and the 7th time during the Gregg Popovich/Tim Duncan era, and have a record of 4-2 in WCF's during this era. Obviously the 4 wins were '99, '03, '05, and '07, and the losses were the Lakers sweep in '01, and another loss to the Lakers in '08. The other four prior to this year were '79, '82, '83, and '95, when we were up 2-0 on Houston (without home court advantage), only to lose four-straight as Hakeem Olajuwon completely & embarrassingly schooled MVP David Robinson.

This is something worth noting (and is something I've been wanting to make public, under my pen, for a long time). In the 2004 playoffs, 2nd-round series with the Lakers was tied 2-2, and Tim Duncan hit an amazing shot to put us ahead in game-5 at home. We all know what happened right after that. Lakers go up 3-2, and win the series the next game. They then go on to beat the T-Wolves in the WCF, only to get their asses handed to them in the Finals by the Detroit Pistons. Derek Fisher doesn't hit that lucky 0.04 shot, we win the title that year.

Two years later in the 2006 playoffs, following our return to title holders in '05, and with the #1 seed, we go head-to-head against the Dallas Mavericks in one of the best series in recent memory. Game-7 in San Antonio with the 3-pt. lead, Dirk drives and gets to the bucket with 0:25 left, and Manu pulls his most bone-headed move of all-time, fouling Dirk as the ball rolls in for the "and-1". Of course, Dirk hits the FT, the game goes to OT, and the Mavs pull it out. They then go on to get beaten pretty badly in the Finals by the Miami Heat. Manu doesn't foul Dirk on that play, we win the title that year.

So, if those two tiny little exclusive events don't happen, we win FIVE straight championships from '03 to '07.

OK now that I've gotten that off my chest, the 2012 WCF began with 5 straight from Sefolosha and Durant, followed by 8 straight from Tony, Diaw, and Duncan. Then after Russell Westbrook made an easy layup to put the Thunder up 11-10, Spurs call timeout. Teams would trade a basket, and then defenses and sloppiness took over for a few minutes. Kawhi Leonard made a layup, and then a solid three. After a couple Kevin Durant FTs, Manu made a sweet layup to put us ahead 21-18. Then this happened in the last possession of the 1st-Q:


Beginning the 2nd-Q down by 6 (24-18), the Thunder had already racked-up several blocks, and a few steals. Derek Fisher, Sefolosha, and James Harden all would hit early jumpers, but Manu & Tiago Splitter would put down 7 of their own. Gary Neal would enter at this point and immediately make his presence known, but too much Derek Fisher, and too many Spurs turnovers would mar the 2nd-Q. Durant, Westbrook, and Fisher were getting most of what they shot (Fisher hasn't missed yet), and 14 Spurs turnovers led to a halftime deficit of one: 47-46.

So the Spurs had to feel OK with the fact that we were down only 1 despite 14 TOs, 6 blocks, and 6 steals, and Derek Fisher was their leading scorer, right?

Well things only got worse. Serge Ibaka began the 3rd-Q with a powerful dunk, and a FT. Our offense came out stagnant, and guys were settling for jumpers, which of course they missed. Four minutes into the 3rd, and with only a Timmy FT so far, Tony hit a three in the corner to close a 7-pt. Thunder lead to 4. With 5:00 left in the 3rd, Durant would hit a nice jumper, which led to a 61-56 OKC lead. Enter Manu Ginobili again. We would close to within 2 again, but just like that Harden would hit a three, and Durant - two more FTs - taking the lead back to 7. After a Manu three with 2:30 on the clock, OKC would run off 5 more for a 71-62 lead going into the 4th-Q. Yikes!

Splitter layup. Harden jumper. Splitter hook. Now down 7 at this point, Gary Neal would enter, and give the team a huge boost while the big-3 rested for a couple minutes. OKC would be stuck on 73 - from right after Harden hit their only 4th-Q shot, at 11:18, for a full 4:07, while Neal had 4, Tiago had 3, and Tony 2. And just like that the crowd was as loud as I've heard a Spurs' crowd this season. This 4th-Q was INTENSE! I think a lot of fans probably felt like this was finally

Neal provided a huge spark for the Spurs - Image Source (Photo by Layne Murdoch/NBAE via Getty Images)

gonna be our first loss in 7 weeks, but near the end of the Thunder cold-streak (when Tony tied it up at 73) the entire arena had exciting new life! Tied up at 73, Perkins would hit 1 of 2 FTs, followed by another layup from Tony to take the lead. It was at this point that Manu was not to be denied. After he created his own little layup for a 3-pt. lead, and Fisher replied with a jumper of his own, Manu got to the line and hit both. Then Fisher finally missed a shot, and Gary Neal followed it with a clutch three. It was now 82-76, Spurs - culminating an 18-3 San Antonio run over the last 6:13.

Up 82-76 with just under 5 minutes left, Spurs withstood 8 straight OKC FTs with 4 of their own, a Duncan layup, and a gigantic Stephen Jackson three with 3:01 left to put us up 7, 91-84.

Then with 1:57 remaining, Manu did this. Watch Kevin Durant bite on this fake. SICK! 94-84 after the Manu FT. They then began fouling, and while we hit all but one of our FTs, OKC would hit 3 threes (Westbrook, and 2 by Harden) in the last 16-seconds to make the

Manu took over the game - Image Source (AP Photo/Darren Abate)

score appear much closer than the victory actually was. San Antonio takes game-1 101-98!

We did a good job on their big-3. Durant's probably gonna get his, and he did with 27 & 10. However, we held Westbrook & Harden to 14 of 38 shooting (36.8%). Manu was the man tonight with 26-5-3 on 9 of 14 shooting in 34 minutes. Timmy had 16 & 11, and Tony had 18 & 6 plus 8 rebounds. Here's ESPN's boxscore..

That's 19 in a row! Game-2 is Tuesday night at 8pm Central. Look for several changes from the Thunder, but a lot more of the same from my Spurs. One thing I know - we won't have 14 first half turnovers!

I Hit a Raccoon (OC)

So yeah on my drive to pick up my wife from the airport, I hit a raccoon. I had exactly 1 second to react, and let me tell ya', this guy must've wanted to die. I didn't run him over, but rather hit him with the under-carriage of the car. I had a second to hit the brakes, but it didn't matter, and I didn't exactly slam them on. Never go into serious evasive maneuvers for anything smaller than a deer, I think, right? It's not like I could've anyway. It was very loud, and took forever - it seemed like I dragged him a half-mile or so.

A few minutes later everything that I could still hear underneath the car was gone, and the next thing I notice is the A/C isn't cooling any more. Great!

The body damage (yeah it's only a wimpy little bumper) is one thing, and our $50 deductible is cool! But how huge of an issue is this A/C thing?

This A/C thing:

Damn raccoon! I'm pretty sure it was a raccoon - it was bigger than a cat. And I saw the markings of a raccoon. I hope it wasn't someone's dog!

The crazy thing is on the way back, I slowed down and looked around exactly where I remember hitting it. I had to clear my conscience. But I never found anything. The way it sounded, I would've expected it to be lying there in a gigantic pile of nasty. Oh well..

How About a Double Shot of Megadeth



In My Darkest Hour