This A Good Ass Game will be run by carefully chosen special guests while Bobby Mickey is on vacation in Havana. This Week’s Clicks to Pick are brought to you Devon Singrey.
Monday, November 28
Kings @ Wizards
The world is a confusing and frightening place right now. We can all use something to make us feel good. What better way than to look down on the two most dysfunctional franchises in the league? There’s nothing quite like watching John Wall and Bradley Beal fantasize about murdering each other in real time, or Boogie Cousins spontaneously combusting in frustration, to make your problems feel like mere trifles! Sac-Town vs. Chocolate City is the dumpster fire America deserves.
Hawks @ Warriors
Clearly the Dubs have figured some stuff out after the early-season ugliness, and Atlanta looks just good enough again to get fans’ hopes up before another sweet, sweet second-round exit. Steve Kerr is always tinkering with his rotations, but watch out for Spurs protege Mike Budenholzer and his All-Tepid Lineup of backups Tim Hardaway, Jr., Thabo Sefolosha, Mike Muscala and Kris Humphries. It’s hard to not hate the Warriors, but then you watch Dwight Howard for 48 minutes and think, “these guys aren’t so bad.”
Tuesday, November 29
Lakers @ Pelicans
After starting 0-8 and looking primed to waste another year of Anthony Davis, the Pellies have gone 6-3, including a recent four-game win streak. It should be entertaining to see how they deal with the surprisingly decent Lake Show, especially after getting smoked 126-99 earlier in the season. So many questions with these teams! Has Swaggy P made a change for good? Will Mozgov smash? Can Tiny Tim Frazier survive and thrive, or will it be L.A. saying, “Bah, Humbug!” again?
Rockets @ Jazz
It’s a Battle Royale between two teams the media likes to pretend are going to compete in the West! I assume the very existence of James Harden’s ostentatious beard, spicy offensive game and no-cares D will send the fans in Salt Lake City into a frothing rage, so expect a contentious affair between “The Beard” and Utah’s favorite adopted son Gordon Hayward. “Facial hair? 3-pointers? Bad defense? THAT’S NOT REAL BASKETBALL! Jerry Sloan would disapprove of that even more than he would a gay player!”
Wednesday, November 30
Grizzlies @ Raptors
Skinny Kyle Lowry deserves recognition for shedding those pounds, but he’ll never achieve DeMar DeRozan skinniness; just as Toronto will never be a real contender with this group of above-average dudes. The Griz know that life, having existed for years on the periphery of elite relevance and never quite getting there. The winner gets to pretend they have a real shot past the first round for another month.
Thursday, December 1
Clippers @ Cavaliers (Good Ass Game of the Week)
The Clips are dope. The LeBrons are dope. This game is dope. Like every other basketball fan in America, I’m curious to see if L.A. is actually for real this time, or if they’re going to faceplant before the conference finals again. Beating the champs on the road would be a good indicator, but it’ll take a lot to top The King, who’s currently averaging 23, 9 and 8 on 50% shooting. Plus, Kevin Love has decided to show up this season. And Kyrie! Damn, the Cavs are good.
Rockets @ Warriors
It’s always fun to watch Houston take on Golden State. The Rockets aren’t good enough to seriously threaten the Dubs, but they’re not smart enough to realize it; which makes it super entertaining as they fire off 45 threes only to lose 130-100. It’s kind of cool that James Harden is a point guard now, so he and Steph get to not guard each other as they both go off for 40-plus. This is one of those nationally televised games in which KD needs to really drive home his new villain status. Embrace the evil, Kevin. Everyone hates you already.
Friday, December 2
Timberwolves @ Knicks
You’d better tune in to check out two of the best young big men in the game as Karl-Anthony Towns and Kristaps Porzingis go head-to-head. Plus: Carmelo! Andrew Wiggins! Zach LaVine will probably dunk! There’ll be a gross slap-fight as snarly tough guy Joakim Noah and future Noah replacement Robin Lopez butt heads (possibly literally). As an added bonus, the 27 percent three-point shooting percentages of point guards Derrick Rose and Ricky Rubio will have a bricklaying contest to the death. Fun fact: D-Rose’s career percentage from distance is worse than Ricky’s. ¡Ay Caramba!
Cavaliers @ Bulls
The King on back-to-back nights! Chicago HATES LeBron, and the unholy Rondo-Wade-Butler triumvirate hasn’t blown up yet, so this ought to be a loud, angry environment that will test Cleveland one night after playing the Clips. The Bulls aren’t going to be a legit contender to win the East, but up until Rondo quits on the team everyone should be watching. There’s just no way this ends well. A sweep of this back-to-back would be pretty impressive for the Cavs.
Sunday, December 4
Pelicans @ Thunder
Why not? We get two of the supreme athletic freaks in the Brow and Russ, with both players vying for the title of “Most amazing plays without any help in a single season.” Russ will try to posterize Anthony Davis. Davis will try to end Russ’ life. The other eight players are completely superfluous in this game. We shouldn’t even count their stats. With enough assists from Davis, there could be a triple-double on both sides.
Devon Singrey is a Portlander and creator of the college football blog, Making Sense of Saturday. His interests include basketball, football, history, mythology, funky music, and all things Prince.