It’s a measure of just how dominant Connecticut under Geno Auriemma has become that last night, with the Huskies trailing by one point to Dayton at halftime of their Elite Eight game, the world turned upside down (for those few of us on Twitter who care about women’s college hoops).
Naturally, the Huskies cruised to a 21-point win to return to the Final Four for an eighth consecutive year. And still, Geno has never made the cover of a regular issue of Sports Illustrated. If only the managing editor were from Connecticut (what?). If only Rebecca Lobo knew someone of influence there. The truth: If only women’s basketball were relevant outside of a few patches of America.
Still, Geno is quite the captivating figure (and I’ve got the self-published book sales totals to prove it). Fourteen years ago, after a typically entertaining Geno post-game presser, a wonderful local beat writer named Carl Adamec pointed at Geno and said to me, “When he leaves, I’m leaving. ”
They’re both still there. It’s been a fabulous run in Storrs.
2. A Chimp with a Machine Gun
An excellent penultimate episode of the season for Better Call Saul, in which Jimmy McGill has his “Fredo, I know it was you” moment with big brother Chuck. As much as we wanted to vilify Howard Hamlin, he was just covering for Chuck. And as much as Jimmy accused Kim of betraying him, she was just trying to spare him the agony of discovering that his own brother had betrayed him.
“You’re not a REAL lawyer!” Chuck barks at the proud alumnus of the American College of Samoa (“Go, Landcrabs!”) in his own defense, after Jimmy successfully sleuths out Chuck’s insidious actions. “Handing you a license to practice law is like handing a chimpanzee a machine gun.”
I was waiting for Jimmy to strike back with the information that the doctor at the hospital had proven that Chuck’s medical condition was psychosomatic, but maybe he’ll hold that card back for another day.
As the season has gone on, we’ve seen that Jimmy is even more motivated to win his big brother’s approval than he is to garner Kim’s. And now that cord has been severed. The loss of innocence via betrayal is a powerful thing. But so is vindication. The show is headed in a fascinating direction.
As always, Alan Sepinwall’s review is worth reading….
3. Black & Dekker*
The Associated Press named its All-American team on Monday: Jahlil Okafor (Duke), Frank Kaminsky (Wisconsin), Jerian Grant (Notre Dame), Willie Cauley-Stein (Kentucky) and D’Angelo Russell (Ohio State). All fine choices, but I’d be willing to say that at least three of them, if not four, have a teammate who will be a more valuable NBA player.
I really like Willie Cauley-Stein, a junior seven-footer (who can stay step for step with Grant, coast-to-coast), but if I were an NBA GM, I’d rather have freshman seven-footer Karl-Anthony Towns. But I like them both.
Grant? I think his game is a little herky-jerky. In two years Demetrious Jackson will be better. Pat Connaughton is a far better glue guy, even though he’d be without a true position in the NBA.
It’s hard not to love Frank Kaminsky, who may win the Naismith Award. But teammate Sam Dekker is, at six-foot-seven, a terrific outside scoring threat. Will Kaminsky, a seven-footer, be able to thrive in the NBA (yes)? I like them both.
The easiest call for me is Justise Winslow over Okafor, who may win the Naismith Award and may be the No. 1 overall pick and who air-balled a free throw on Sunday. Is that last indiscretion a reason to drop Okafor so much? Not exactly, but I just love everything about Winslow’s game. He’s LeBron-like in his baseline-to-baseline athleticism; he’s a better three-point shooter than you think; and he seems to play better when the stakes are higher. There’s a touch of Jordan to him –not in overall talent, but in his competitiveness. He just has “it.”
*Oh, c’mon! You’re not really upset by that hed, are you?
4. That Girl
We knew her way back when… the inexorable and wholly deserved ascent of Amelia Boone into the national consciousness continues, albeit with a beef jerky ad co-starring Screamin’ A. Smith. There’s practically no one I admire more, with the possible exception of Kim Wexler. Anyway, this latest entry from her blog is just another example of how Ms. Boone is not like the rest of us.
5. Noah, You Didn’t
The Daily Show announced its new host late yesterday as 32 year-old biracial South African comedian Trevor Noah. And then the internet unearthed anti-Semitic and sexist tweets he sent out seven years ago (they’re really more anti p.c. than anything). Commence your harrumphing.
Noah on his father being white Swiss and his mother being black African: “You know how the Swiss love their chocolate.”
Bye Bye Love
Curious that Ric Ocasek is remembered as the lead vocalist for The Cars, when my favorite song by the Boston-based band, one of forerunners of New Wave music, was sung by the late Benjamin Orr, who also sang lead on two other signature tracks, Let’s Go and Just What I Needed. He looks 100x more the lead singer than Ocasek ever did, too.
In the Debut Album Hall of Fame, The Cars eponymous 1978 effort is a first-ballot inductee. This tune is one of the reasons why.
Also, it’s difficult to arrive at the end of this song and not hear “Moving In Stereo” following it immediately.
Warriors at Clippers
10:30 p.m. TNT
Golden State has the West’s best record and the NBA’s longest win streak (9 games). The Clippers, in any other league or any other state, would be that league’s/state’s hottest team. L.A. has won 7 straight. If I were Kerr, I’d sit Curry out. This is a game in which he could get hurt.