For those of you coming to this blog solely to ask what's wrong with Kevin Martin (who posted a 2-point, 1-8 FG, 23 minutes line):
The Clippers doubled him every time he touched the ball on offense. The shots he did take came when he was able to create as the double was coming. None were easy - he didn't miss any really open shots. His one basket - an alley-oop from John Salmons - was by far his easiest shot of the night, and even it had a higher degree of difficulty than is typical. The Kings did exploit it some, getting the ball to Ron Artest and Mike Bibby in space more than usual.
Why the few minutes? I'd say the main reason is that Salmons was the only guy out there who could defend Cuttino Mobley, who lit himself on fire as only Cuttino Mobley can in the third quarter. Salmons is long and quick enough to stay with Mobley, and did a great job of taking Mobley back out of the game. (For the record, Martin was mainly marking Shaun Livingston after the kid's hot first quarter, and Martin did a good job.)
The fact that Kevin Martin having a bad game will be news around the league is a testament to how far he's come in such a short time period.
Other notes from the game:
- Elton Brand should be getting twice as many shots as he does. If the Clippers insist on misusing on the league's Top 10 players, please pass him to us. Seriously. Free Elton.
- Aaron Williams might not belong in the league anymore. And he's certainly not a starter.
- Quinton Ross appears to be a worse offensive player than one-dimensional perimeter defenders Bruce Bowen and Trenton Hassell ever were. I haven't seen tons of Ross, but man. I've never seen anyone miss three shots as badly as Quinton's first half attempts, and I watch Ron Artest play everyday! However, I am sold on Ross' defense. Smart work.
- A lot of Clippers fans also seem to be infatuated with James Singleton. I've never been wowed by him. Any resident Clips fans want to explain him to me?
- Corey Maggette had a worse game than Kevin Martin. No one will talk about it. Why has Maggette fallen so far? He needs a new team.
- He's big, he's nasty. He's Big Nasty. I'm rather glad we didn't trade him, even though I endorsed such trades. He's valuable on the court, which is something I didn't believe a month ago.
- Brad Miller is a welcome sight. You all know I love Shareef Abdur-Rahim, but he's getting in foul trouble every time out playing the five. He just doesn't have the size or athleticism to hold his own on the glass or defense against centers, so he has to bail himself out. He's played fine on offense though, and has really cut down his turnovers.
- How high can the streak go? If the Kings beat the Clippers in the season's three remaining matchups, it'll be 18 at ARCO and 17 overall. That sounds pretty insane to me.