Absurd, half-true assertions fire me up like few other things do. And FOX seems to have found a niche in the market for the journalist that calls himself an analyst, yet comes across as more of a paper shock jock than "someone who is skilled at analyzing data."
Only days removed from throwing the Lakers under the bus, after they finally looked human when struggling in hostile territory (LA are still the ones with the target on the backs of their collective jerseys, remember), Charley Rosen, rather than address what the team he covers did right, instead turned his venomous keystrokes on the Utah Jazz
Specifically, one particular Jazzman more than any other; Carlos Boozer.
I find this to be a disturbingly myopic, hate-based viewpoint, grounded in a lack of real facts on the matter. How does one ignore the fact that Boozer actually won his matchup with Pau Gasol? Or at the very least played him to a draw. To lay the blame at Boozer's feet for the loss is absurd.
I'm not buying it.
Understand that I agree with Rosen on much of what he wrote concerning Kobe Bryant in regards to the Los Angeles Lakers in that roast-of-a-post, but I have to put down my foot when it comes to the Jazz. As Jerry Sloan once said, "you're way off on this one," Charley.
To say that "Utah’s post-up game is virtually useless against the Lakers" is only partially true. Boozer got to the rim plenty on Pau Gasol. Indeed, I'd argue that Gasol's defense of Carlos was even more heinous than Boozer's was of Pau. Hell, I wouldn't be surprised if Phil Jackson revokes the lone "very" remaining of Gasol's game status.
Carlos Boozer nearly had a second 20/20 vs the Lakers in a year's time -Getty Images
Sure, Pau had an impressive night too, dishing out 9 dimes, but seriously, it's more of a fluke from Fisher these days to go 2-3 from three-point line than not. Throw in Lamar Odom's less-than-surprising-to-Jazz-fans performance from range, and that pretty much accounts for the above average night Gasol had passing, as well as five of LA's seven threes.
On the season, Carlos Boozer is a career high 3.2 assists per game. Pau Gasol, 3.3.
How many dimes did Boozer miss out on with the Jazz's inability to match the Lakers from the perimeter, going 4-15 from the arc? That much Rosen got right; Utah is not yet consistent from the perimeter. Maybe drawing up an actual play off of some of those high screens might be useful after all, coach.
But, let's be honest about this. Only two Jazz players didn't seem to get wide-eyed when it got close. Only two guys showed up for the entire game, or at least more of it than anyone else bothered to, for Utah; Carlos Boozer and Wesley Matthews.
Shortly before game time I tweeted "Keys: 1) Jazz bigs play LA's to a draw 2) Matthews/Miles/Korver equal Bryant's output 3) D Will beats Fisher/Farmar"
Really only two of those players performed their roles the way we expected, or hoped they would. Paul Millsap made multiple mistakes at crucial times in the 4th quarter, while Deron Williams wasn't to be heard from again after the 3rd.
Getty Images via d.yimg.com
I'm leaving Mehmet Okur out of it because what else can you say about no made threes in three attempts when that's your specialty and a necessity to draw the LA bigs away from the paint. Or only seeing the stripe three times, while only grabbing three boards, no blocks and no steals as a seven-footer...
At least some of the Jazz players performed exactly way we expect them to. No, sirree. Can't blame them for the loss when they performed their contractual obligations and some, in one of the biggest games of this 25-year-old-as-a team's time together.
Yes, The Lakers' length is a factor in Utah's demise, but to try and pin this loss on the one guy who is "far-and-away" the most consistent on the roster is absurd. The Utah team as a whole rotated about as fast as a rotisserie chicken. How do you lose track of Lamar Odom so many times, for goodness sake? He's not a little guy.
It's Boozer needs the help, not Deron Williams, if the Jazz are to ever end the nightmare in the shadowed spotlight that is the STAPLES Center.
Time to take off those Rosen-colored glasses.