Iron Man-Flash Darren Collison Storms past Brookman & Robin for 28 Points, as UCLA Kapows Stanford, without Lucquaman, but with help from Superman Kevin Love, who comes back from the dead, from Superboy James Keefe, who comes out of nowhere, and from a COMICal Card decision that comes as a shock
And some people think that Comics are wastes of Trees…
The Bruins wasted the Trees on Saturday 67-64, to become the Undisputed Pac-10 Champions. They have now won the Regular Season Title and the Pac-10 Tournament Title, and are assured of being the #1 Seed in the Western, Anaheim/Phoenix Regionals. In fact, if Clemson beats North Carolina today, which is not all that far-fetched after two close previous meetings and after Virginia Tech took the Tar Heels to the wire yesterday, the Bruins would probably be the #1 OVERALL Seed in the Big Dance.
The victory was the Bruins’ 10th Straight, 15th out of 16, and completed a 3-game Season Sweep over the Cardinal. But this one was special, because they did it against the 7-foot Lopez Twins, WITHOUT injured Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, and with Kevin Love hampered by brutal Back Spasms. Love came in and out of the game in the 1st Half, in obvious pain, scoring only 3 Points, putting his Streak of Double-Digit Games – which spans his entire college career – in jeopardy. But with the game tied at 32 at the Intermission, Love must have gotten just the right treatment, because he and the whole team played much better in the 2nd Half. After the Cardinal had staked out an early 2nd half lead, the Bruins went on a rampage, led by Love and Darren Collison. They took and held a lead, building it up to 10 with 2 minutes left.
Collison was wicked with his ability to penetrate the Stanford Zone Defense. He continuously got the ball in the paint for easy jumpers, and piled up 28 points with only 3 of those Points coming from behind the arc. Darren, who played all 40 minutes, completely picked up the slack on Offense to more than compensate for the absence of Luc and the early struggles of Love.
Picking up the slack on the Boards was Russell Westbrook, who outrebounded everyone in the game, including the Twin Towers, with a career-high ELEVEN Rebounds. The most pleasant surprise was James Keefe, who came off the bench to score 8 Points, pull down 3 Offensive Caroms, and play much-improved Defense on the Twins during 21 minutes of playing time. It was something of a continuation Coming Out Party for Keefe, who showed signs of life against sc, and improved quite a bit on that performance against the Trees.
Josh Shipp is not “back” as previously hoped, in terms of shooting, as he missed all three of his Three’s and scored only 7 Points, but he still had a very good game, getting NINE Rebounds and 3 Steals. Love ended up with 12 Points (the Streak lives on), with 6 Rebounds, a Block, a Steal, and 2 Assists. He says his back still hurts, but should be fine by the next game. Luc’s ankle is also expected to heal enough for him to play, WHEN NEEDED, which might or might not be in the 1st Round. Although several Bruins stepped up and filled in for Luc, he is still needed for a serious NCAA Run. But that should not take anything away from the INSPIRED play of Lorenzo Mata-Real and Alfred Aboya, who both played their hearts out, throughout this Tourney. Stanford’s Brook Lopez said after the game – in which the Bruins got about FOUR TIMES as many Offensive Rebounds as Stanford – that maybe the Bruins WANTED IT MORE. And that is an intelligent observation. But speaking of Stanford and their legendary reputaion for intelligence…
Please tell us how they could take a two-point shot with three seconds left in a game they trailed by three.
Once again, the Bruins blow off the idea of fouling to take away a potential game-tying three-point shot, but instead of taking a Three, Stanford waits until the 5-second mark, and then drives to the hoop. What in the World were they thinking? What are the GPA/SAT Minimums for Stanford? How about for their Coaches?
The aftermath of that choke was Darren Collison getting fouled, and the 94% Free Throw shooter coolly sinking them both, and then Stanford attempting a wild 45-footer to tie – that wasn’t close – as time expired. That final 45-footer wasn’t a choke like the Mayo brick the night before, but the DECISION to NOT go for a Three-pointer with 5 ticks left was a BIGGER choke than O.J.’s. What a way to blow a great would-be comeback from 61-51 with 2 minutes to play.
Here are 5 more GAME-ACTION photos, from the previous Bruin beating of Stanford. Still no new Cheer pictorials (because we haven’t gotten the response that we were hoping for, from someone important, who might be mad at us for some reason).