While You Weren't Watching: Cousins contained, Hawks execute and more
The NBA regular season operates at a frenzied pace, with one game and storyline bleeding into the next. Every Friday here at SI.com, we'll slow things down in While You Weren't Watching—a spotlight on the little moments in the week's slate that might otherwise get lost in the shuffle. Here's what you may have missed...
For the record: No foul was called, but DeMarcus Cousins was hit with a technical for lodging a formal complaint.
• Segue. One more thing to love about the Hawks: Their seamless transition between a sideline set and actual, schemed offense.
• Vestigial strategy. If you’ve ever been curious as to why there aren’t many full or half-court traps on the professional level, I give you the Lakers’ ill-fated attempt to pin Brooklyn’s Joe Johnson in the corner:
• A foiled nostalgia trip. Not this time, Tayshaun.
• Better angels. Houston is getting a healthy dose of Good Josh Smith these days, including this sequence in which he gives up possession, gets it back on a roll, and whips a preemptive pass to Trevor Ariza without the slightest hesitation.
• The give and give and go. Evan Turner isn’t much of a shooter, but put him in the right situation—off a wide-open kick-out from a driving Kelly Olynyk—and he can pretend to be one for just long enough to make this pretty return pass:
• A brief jog through calamity. Of note in this clip: 1) Weird things tend to happen when Bismack Biyombo tries to dribble, and 2) Biyombo’s botched attempt to take the ball out was bookended by a pair of P.J. Hairston airballs.
• Chance without risk. It was a canny—if illegal—move by Rajon Rondo to play the tip on a jump ball rather than the toss itself. It’s been tried before and whistled dead, but considering that the alternative is Mitch McGary’s easy claim of a jump ball, what’s the harm in making a chaotic play and seeing if the officials keep up?