Last Wednesday, UConn and Kentucky faced off in the Maui Invitational Final. Kemba Walker had blown the tournament up in the previous games and saw his NBA Draft stock rising, so why was Celtics GM Danny Ainge so bored with the proceedings?
Philips of Rumors & Rants was at the Maui Invitational on assignment from SBNation and was lucky enough to sit on press row for the final. Also seated on press row? Danny Ainge, who just couldn't get enough of his cellphone, an "HTC Verizon phone." Philips took clandestine pictures (though not of the cellphone screen because that's been done before) and added a time-stamp for those scoring at home. So let's look at some of the pictures and see what was happening during the game to see if Danny's behavior was at all warranted.
The above photo (and yes, that is ESPN NBA Draft guru/Darko Milicic fetishist Chad Ford doing his impression of the MGM lion while yawning) was taken "shortly after tip-off" so Ainge might have looked back to the court in time to see Kemba Walker hit a jumper at the 19:37 mark.
Here's Ainge checking his phone while Roscoe Smith was blocking a DeAndre Liggins layup attempt at the 13:38 mark.
Here's Ainge one second before Niels Giffey made a three-pointer at the 4:16 mark.
And just what is Chad Ford doing on his iPad?
Finally, we have Ainge looking over his phone with 1:24 left in the half, about 14 seconds after Kemba Walker hit yet another three pointer.
Philips goes on to note that"these pictures are but a small sampling of what he he did all night" and while UConn was putting on a clinic, Kemba Walker was solidifying his status as a lottery prospect. No one but Ainge knows what he was doing on his phone, but if you were an NBA GM on a scouting trip, wouldn't it be a good idea to scout the best player in a nationally televised tournament? Why even go (spending the holiday in Hawaii aside)?
But the best part of this story is, as Philips notes, Ainge attempting to use Slingbox on his laptop. This game was around ten at night, so that Bulls-Suns double-OT thriller was probably just getting good. Maybe Ainge can't stand college basketball and was texting about the 11 NBA games that were happening at the time. That would make some sense.
Note: We're going to ignore the fact that while Philips was taking these pictures he was also not paying attention to the game because that would just be a dick move.