About Last Night: Somehow, the Celtics Keep Winning
In case you were out fighting off the pre-Valentine’s Day crowds at your local florist, here’s what you missed in sports on Wednesday.
- The Boston Celtics beat the Chicago Bulls, 71-69, at home in a low-scoring matchup of traditional Eastern Conference powers. “Even though we lost, tonight’s game was as if the perfect game of my dreams sprung to life before me on the court,” said Bulls head coach and former Celtics assistant Tom Thibodeau. “The game waved at me. I waved back. ‘Hello,’ I said. ‘You may not be beautiful to others, but to me you are perfection.’ The game giggled at me coquettishly, but it would not allow anyone to score. No matter, that only made the game more appealing to me.” Thibodeau then, suddenly lost in reverie, began waltzing with an invisible dance partner as he murmured sweet nothings about defensive rotations and clogged passing lanes into her invisible ear.
- New Orleans rookie Anthony Davis had 21 points and 11 rebounds as the Hornets crushed the Portland Trail Blazers, 99-63, at home. “Uh, is it Mardi Gras week here?” asked Blazers All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge, who was held to six points in the game, “because I have no idea. I’ve spent so much time in my hotel, and none at all on Bourbon Street.” Blazers rookie point guard Damian Lillard, who led his team with 12 points, added, “Yeah, I bet we wouldn’t have had a fun time at all if we had gone out with three garbage bags full of beads that J.J. Hickson bought. We didn’t do that at all, though. So don’t go to YouTube looking for evidence that we did that. Because we didn’t.”
- The Pittsburgh Penguins and Ottawa Senators played a game of hockey that ended 4-2 in Pittsburgh’s favor and was notable for no other reason because I apparently blocked the entire thing out of my mind, so I’m going to hand the rest of this recap over to the part of my brain that manufactures my nightmares … Dark hallway, dark hallway, all the doors are locked, now I’m falling, I’m in water, I’m sinking, I’m sinking, I can’t breathe, OH, GOD, NO NO NO, ERIK KARLSSON GOT HIS ACHILLES SLICED BY MATT COOKE’S SKATE IN A SINGLE CUT, THIS IS THE ABSOLUTE WORST THING EVER, now Karlsson’s face is my mom’s face, and his/her teeth are falling out … and I’m back. What did I miss?
- The St. Louis Blues came back to edge the Detroit Red Wings, 4-3, in overtime on the road. St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock said after the game, “We like to toy with our audience, set expectations, and then subvert them. The early goals we gave up to the Wings were just a classic MacGuffin. The best tension is sometimes built from what doesn’t happen, and I felt that by limiting Detroit’s shots in the second and third periods, we did that masterfully this evening.” Astute fans of Hitchcock’s work were particularly appreciative of his ability to insert himself into the on-ice action with a stealthy cameo as the second-intermission Zamboni driver.
- In their final game as Big East rivals, Connecticut upset the Syracuse Orange, 66-58, in Hartford. “Even though I’m not going to miss facing the Huskies each year, I’m going to really miss playing games in the exciting city of Hartford,” said Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim after the game. He then added, “No, seriously, I live in Syracuse. I’m going to really miss playing games in the exciting city of Hartford.”
- Duke rallied at Cameron Indoor Stadium to knock off rival North Carolina, 73-68. The Blue Devils’ transition defense shone in the second half, as they allowed only two points on the break, while managing to get six witty comments equating North Carolina’s “Tar Heels” nickname with their pace of play. Duke senior Seth Curry was particularly effective, at one point simultaneously forcing Carolina to withdraw into a half-court set after a turnover while telling Tar Heels guard P.J. Hairston, “You must have more tar on your heels than a T-Rex about to get fossilized.” Unfortunately for Curry, he was too busy laughing at his own joke to notice Hairston slip past him on a backdoor cut, and score an easy layup.
- Daniela Holmqvist failed to qualify for the Women’s Australian Open, which I’m writing about for some reason I can’t remember, as I’ve blocked the whole event out of my mind. Let me hand control back over to the part of my brain that manufactures my nightmares … I’m driving a car, I’m driving a car and the brakes don’t work, I can’t see through the windshield, I’m flying off a cliff, I land on a golf course, someone is criticizing my backswing, Daniela Holmqvist is there, OH, GOD, SHE’S GETTING BITTEN BY A BLACK WIDOW SPIDER, SHE’S DIGGING THE VENOM OUT OF THE ANKLE WITH HER TEE, SHE IS FINISHING THE ROUND, she sprouts wings, I jump on her back, she starts flying higher, my teeth are falling out, her teeth are falling out … and I’m back. What did I miss?
- Manchester United struck early and held on late after Cristiano Ronaldo equalized for Real Madrid, securing a crucial 1-1 road draw at the Santiago Bernabeu in the Champions League round of 16. Ronaldo, who won a Champions League title during his time with United, said after the match, “I have a lot of respect for United and my old manager, and I wish I could have played my whole career in Manchester. However, given my physical beauty, it was impossible. Have you been to Manchester? In Madrid, I have the opportunity to engage with those who are not, how would you say it, possessed of hideously warped British faces, beneath skies that are, um, not blighted with an apocalyptic grayness? Are those the right words?”
- German centerback Mats Hummels atoned for earlier errors by heading home a late goal to give Borussia Dortmund a 2-2 road draw against Shakhtar Donetsk. Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp said after the match, “I think our defense would have done better, but all of their attacking players were Brazilian. Taison? Luiz Adriano? Douglas Costa? Would someone please explain to me what all of these guys are doing in Ukraine? It’s almost as if the team bought players because they were good at football. Unbelievable!”
- Josh Hamilton said publicly on Wednesday that he’s not concerned about the nightlife in Los Angeles derailing his recovery from past substance-abuse issues. I recently spent time in Los Angeles, but for some reason have blocked all of my exposure to the city’s nightlife out of my mind. So, one last time, let’s hand things over to the part of my brain that manufactures my nightmares … I’m in a bar, a man with no face starts telling me about his screenplay, it’s terrible, it’s about baseball, a little orphan prays to get literal Angels to help his favorite baseball team to win the pennant, he wants Joseph Gordon-Levitt to play the orphan, THE MAN DOES HAVE A FACE, IT’S JOSH HAMILTON, HE’S TALKING ABOUT MULTI-PICTURE DEALS AND PRODUCER CREDITS, THERE’S NO ALCOHOL ANYWHERE, I start running, I’m being chased by a bear, I’m not wearing pants, the bear has my mom’s face and Josh Hamilton’s body, except it’s still a bear, his/her/its teeth are falling out … and I’m back. Yeah, right, dream on, Josh. There’s no way JGL ever makes that movie.
Filed Under: About Last Night, Anthony Davis, Big East, Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls, Cristiano Ronaldo, Detroit Red Wings, Duke, Josh Hamilton, Manchester United, New Orleans Hornets, North Carolina, Ottawa Senators, Pittsburgh Penguins, Real Madrid, Syracuse