Nothing changes the complexion of an NBA game, or the welfare of its hoop apparatus, faster or more decisively than the release of Boban. The Nuggets knew this, but had no one who could impede him. The Clippers knew it, but they also know that Boban’s is a power that can be harnessed only for precious minutes at a time. When it is working, the dude will just inject a no-jump dunk directly into the rim; when it is required to work for too long, the dude turns into a heap (okay, mountain range) of ashes on the hardwood. So the Clippers let their big man run for 17 minutes on Wednesday night, and they were all worth your while. Boban made six of eight shots and all six of his free throws, and he also made officials bring a ladder onto the court to assess the rubble in his wake.
Boban Marjanovic was plus-seven in the Clippers’ 107-98 loss. You can’t necessarily close the game with him, and you can’t really push him past 20 minutes; it’s a level he reached only once last season, if only because it’s exhausting to operate at this level, at that size. But a team can deploy Boban to tear open a four-point lead in the final frame, while an entire defense flops around him like a beach full of dying fish:
You know what’s cool, and frankly also respectful to everyone’s time? When your 18-point, eight-rebound outing—it’s absurd that he was credited with zero blocks because my eyeballs certainly inform me that he rocked some folks’ shit—can be compressed into less than two minutes of highlight video.
Boban Marjanovic remains the best thrill-per-minute value in the NBA.
Update (3:15 p.m. ET):