Everything you might have missed last week from the Basketball Universe:
The Anthony Lamb Show
Thirteen-seed Vermont pushed fourth-seed Purdue to the brink in the first round of the NCAA Tournament before falling 80-70 in a game that was much closer than the final score. Although Vermont’s 21-game win streak (the longest in the country) was snapped, Catamounts freshman forward Anthony Lamb looked like an elite NCAA player.
In his first ever game under the brightest of lights, the 6’6” Lamb played 31 minutes, scored 20 points on 8-of-12 shooting, including 3-of-6 from deep, and snagged nine rebounds.
Vermont graduates three players from this year’s squad, which went a league-record 19-0 in America East play (including the conference tournament). With three years to continue to develop, the sky is the limit for both Lamb and the Catamounts, both who should only get better. As a senior what is Lamb going to look like?
That’s, uh… goaltending, bro
Gonzaga has Prezemek Karnowski – a 7’ 300-pound Polish troll with a beard that would make Samcro proud – defending the interior. Meaning, the laws of neither man nor god should prevent the Bulldogs from winning the NCAA Tournament.
That is the only explanation for how and why the ‘Zags got away with a pivotal goaltending call in the waning moments of their second round win over Northwestern.
Gonzaga big man Zach Collins stuck his hand through the rim to send back a Northwestern dunk, the no call resulted in a technical foul on Northwestern and a four-point swing that was too much to overcome.
30-year old, Croatian center Ante Tomic is an artist; this generation’s Arvydas Sabonis. He is a long 7’2”, has an array of post moves and is probably one of the five best center’s in the entire world.
For the past several years he has been a cog for both Barcelona in the EuroLeague and Croatia in international competition.
Inexplicably he is in the midst of his worst year ever in the EuroLeague. On the season Tomic has career lows in points, rebounds, assists, shots made and taken per game.
According to EuroLeague guru David Pick, Barcelona is lukewarm on bringing Tomic back next season.
RIP David Stallworth
Former New York Knick reserve forward David Stallworth passed away at 75 on Thursday.
Stallworth in notable in NBA history for two reasons:
1) Without him the Knicks do not win the 1970 NBA Finals. Stallworth was called upon to contain Wilt Chamberlain when Willis Reed went down with injury in game 5 of the finals. Stallworth scored 12 points and held Wilt to 22, enough for the Knicks to scrap out a 7 point win and put them up on the series 3-2.
2) In 1967, Stallworth had a heart attack and missed two-seasons before working himself back into the league….That is pretty legendary.
Jordan Crawford gettin’ buckets
Earlier this season PopGates interviewed Jordan Crawford, then with the Grand Rapids Drive of the NBA Development League. Out of the league since 2014, we asked Crawford about life if he never gets back to the dance. His response:
It be tough, but that’s life, NBA not everything.
Well, Crawford has now been back in the league for six games with the Pelicans, and he has been red hot – averaging 13 points, 3 assists and less than 1 turnover per game.
Quote of the Week:
“People say to my boys, ‘Hey man, you know your daddy’s crazy? “And you know what they’re saying, ‘Tell us something we don’t know. He’s been crazy all our life. When we came out he was crazy.’ So whatever is on the outside, talking about us, it doesn’t matter. It does not matter.” – Lavar Ball on his kids