On the brink of history, the 0-17 Nets take on the Mavericks. Check in regularly for updates on the game, and my eroding sanity.
A warning: I may not have the heart to give this the attention it doesn't deserve. But I'll try my best in solidarity with my brothers across the Hudson.
9:51: And we have 0-18. That'll be it for this miserable live blog. "An imperfect storm," says Ian Eagle, perhaps misunderstanding the meaning of imperfect. What's the opposite of undefeated? "Defeated?" Yeah, that sounds about right.
9:50: 30 seconds left, and a pretty substantial cascade of boos comes down from the crowd. Not being facetious when I say "at least they care."
9:48: And we've reached the point of the game where the commentators are going over their lists of past broadcast partners they enjoyed working with more than each other.
9:47: Jason Kidd hits the bench with 16 points, 8 rebounds, 10 assists, and 5 steals. I know all other things aren't equal, but Devin Harris's corresponding numbers are 17, 1, 3 and 2.
9:45: It's an 18-point game with 3:10 left. At this point I'm just praying that Jersey doesn't make it close enough to make it worth fouling.
9:41: My will is flagging. Nets fans, is it like this every night? It's one thing to be bad, but something else entirely to be boring. The pieces look like they're there, and in a few years with a few good moves this franchise could be right back at the top, but right now, this is torture to watch.
9:38: I've never seen a team miss so consistently those just-for-fun shots after play stops.
9:35: Nets close the lead to 16, and their fan goes wild.
9:25: It occurs to me that the Nets have a very winnable game against the Bobcats on Friday, and could break their streak by moving to 1-18; the inverse of the greatest streak breaker in history.
9:21: It's 105-78 at the end of the third quarter. If we ignore that whole 49-point outburst in the second, these two teams look evenly matched. And if we ignore the previous 17 games, New Jersey is undefeated this year.
9:15: Sean Williams goaltends by hanging on the rim when Dirk was shooting, for some reason. Next time down the court, the Nets fail to get a shot off in their 24 seconds.
9:12:The Nets are making a run! They're within 20. Highly disappointed with this development, Rick Carlisle calls a timeout to make his players think about what they've done.
9:11: The Nets are averaging 86 points a game. Dallas scored 88 with 7:26 left in the third quarter.
9:08: Some astounding numbers from midway through the third: the Mavs are shooting 72% from the floor, and slightly better from beyond the arc.
9:05: Announcer: "Kiki Vandeweghe probably is the best shooter associated with the Nets." Honestly, put him in! If you're going to fail, at least sell tickets while you do it.
9:03: Erick Dampier goes for a put-back, lands, sets himself, and jumps again to tip in his own shot, all while three Nets defenders stand by and watch.
8:55: Oh no! Noelle is being kicked off So You Think You Can Dance! Also, probably the Nets are doing something poorly, why not.
8:53: And, we're back. Dirk hits an unguarded 25-footer. Lovely.
8:50: Let's see what's going on with the Knicks...oh, down 21. When's baseball season again?
8:48Jason Kidd and Kenyon Martin both ripped Bruce Ratner this week for caring more about real estate than the Nets. It's hard to blame him; the difference is, people expect the real estate market to rebound eventually.
8:43: Poor Nancy Newman doing the around-the-NBA highlights at the half can't keep a tinge of jealousy out of her voice every time some other team goes something good. Sad, really.
8:37: And it's halftime, with the Mavs up 77-50. It's a pattern; NJ was down 25 at the half to the Lakers on Sunday when they had a chance to avoid tying the record. "Did they give up already?" asks one non-sports-fan friend. "Maybe they just get tired easily," opines the girlfriend. I opt for all of the above.
8:33: The Muppets are singing at the Rockefeller Center tree lighting. Best sixth man: Bobby Simmons, or Rizzo the Rat?
8:30: I look up, and it's a 20-point game. When did this happen?
8:27: Spectacular ball movement by the Nets had the Mavs totally off balance, culminating in a missed 7-footer. Dirk promptly nails a three-pointer on the other end. Story of the season.
8:21: Dallas is up 48-39. It's like a child torturing a spider, pulling out the legs one at a time. The damn thing keeps wiggling, but you're just waiting for the moment when the child gets tired of the game and squishes it.
8:17: My girlfriend has put on "So You Think You Can Dance." I barely brought myself to care enough to ask her to turn it back.
8:13: The Nets' highest paid player, Bobby Simmons, has a name that makes him sound like a fat, older white guy who works at your office. He's also averaging less than 20 minutes per game.
8:07: And after a quarter, we're tied up at 28. It's the most points the Nets have scored in the first quarter all year. If these teams stay on the same pace...they'll be forever tied and we'll have infinite overtimes.
8:04: Terrence Williams with a monster dunk on a breakaway. This team has a good amount of talent, or at least not an 0-17 lack of talent. But, much like my fantasy football team, barely falling short time after time will still count as a string of losses. I'm not bitter.
8:01: The mic picks up that same damn kid, screaming "airball" at the top of his lungs. Urge to kill...rising.
7:57: Nets on an 8-0 run to tie the game at 19. I know it's early, but if the Nets pull this out, where does this rank with the greatest wins of all time? Higher than the Miracle on Ice? Upset beating Man O'War?
7:51: 6:25 left in the 1st, Mavs up 17-9. Hollinger says statistically, the T-Wolves are worse than the Nets, but as a liveblog is rapidly teaching me, sometimes you have to watch the games to see how hapless a team is.
7:48: The announcers stumble over Rodrigue Beaubois's name, leading to some French jokes culminating with "Do you like croissants?" Not sure how that's any less offensive than the Hamed Haddadi jokes.
7:46: As Kidd shoots a pair of free throws, the crowd mic picks up a child booing at the top of his lungs. Darn kids, no sense of their team's storied history.
7:42: And Jason Kidd hits the three. Told you.
7:42: Nets win the tip! And score on the first possession! This will likely be the only win, and only lead tonight.
7:39: To a man, the Nets say the record's not important. Then why is every question asked about the record?
7:35: Poor Tom Barrise. Kiki Vandeweghe takes over as coach tomorrow, so Barrise's only two games as an NBA coach are record-tying and -setting losses.
7:30: Nice little package to start the YES Network broadcast, complete with dramatic music. We're a part of history here, folks.
7:25: They're going with the same lineup tonight. Got to dance with the one what brought you, I suppose.