(sorry for borrowing your shtick, section 214)
Anyways, wildly entertaining game. I kept thinking that the Cavs were going to finally pull away after getting up by a few buckets in the 2nd and at the end of the 3rd, but the Kings kept fighting. The crowd slowly got more and more into the game until in the 4th it felt like Old Arco again. Unfortunately there were way too many LeBron jerseys in the crowd, but what can you do when your team won 17 games last year.
We had too many opportunities to win this game. We missed quite a few open or makeable shots in the 4th, most notably Evans' missed layup after the drive-and-pivot on LeBron. (Side note: every time there was an Evans v. LeBron iso play late in the 4th, the WHOLE CROWD would get on its feet. They knew it was alpha male v. alpha male. The scoreboard shows the winner of that battle.) But as has been said ad nauseum in the postgame thread, this happens when the average age of your starting lineup is barely 21.
We'll get there.
Other assorted thoughts:
Shaq was damn near useless, except on the few plays where Hawes tried to defend the entry pass and Shaq got it anyways. I love that Arco still booed him raucously, five years after he left the Lakers.
Also - Shaq and LeBron bitch to the refs after just about every call. LeBron especially is getting to that Kobe zone where he can hound a ref for several seconds after a play in a manner where a) he won't get T'd up and b) the ref will seem to apologize to him by the end. That's superstar treatment.
Another point that has been written about before, but Casspi really hits the boards hard. He's all hustle. Greene also had a solid game. I love that Westphal can run out 9 players in the first half until we find the rotation that works (although I thought Greene should have gotten a bit more of a run in the 4th, I can't argue against Casspi's D on LeBron, which I thought was more than solid). Our depth is going to win us a few more games this year.