THE SCOWLEYS: Pinching Stephen Curry’s cheeks after All-Star snub
BY JOE COWLEY email@example.com January 26, 2013 7:30PM
OAKLAND, CA - JANUARY 23: Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors reacts after he made a free throw in the final minute of their victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder at Oracle Arena on January 23, 2013 in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Updated: February 28, 2013 6:43AM
Who would have guessed that the face of this year’s All-Star snubs would look like it belongs to a 16-year-old kid?
Stephen Curry, the babyfaced Golden State Warriors guard, handled the disappointment of being left off the Western Conference All-Star team like a seasoned vet rather than a third-year player.
‘‘I think I got more pub from not making it than if I would have,’’ Curry said. ‘‘Sure, you could [call me the poster boy of the snubs], but I’m not really worried about it at all. It keeps me focused and grounded, man. I’ve had a lot of doubters since I was coming out of high school, so just another reason to stay focused and keep doing what I’m doing.’’
Warriors coach Mark Jackson was more outspoken about it.
‘‘Disappointed that he didn’t make it — he was very deserving — but our assignment remains our assignment,’’ Jackson said. ‘‘We’re not going to get caught up in it. We’re going to talk about it, we’re not going to ignore it, but we’re going to continue doing what we’re doing.
‘‘He stands for everything that’s right. If you’re a coach, he’s the one guy you should vote for.’’
The Scowleys 2012-13 All-Snub Team:
Stephen Curry, G, Warriors: He has transformed himself into a solid point guard while keeping deadly accuracy as a shooter and is versatile enough to move over and play two-guard when needed.
Jamal Crawford, G, Los Angeles Clippers: He’s a modern-day version of ‘‘The Microwave’’ Vinnie Johnson — albeit much skinnier — because of the way he can come off the bench and add instant offense.
Serge Ibaka, F, Oklahoma City Thunder: A shot-blocking expert who’s adding a mid-range jumper to his offensive arsenal.
Marc Gasol, C, Memphis Grizzlies: The only Gasol in the league who’s making an impact these days.
Brook Lopez, C, Brooklyn Nets: One of the few last true centers in the Eastern Conference, Lopez has developed into an elite big man and should have been recognized.
◆ Places that Dwight Howard would be welcomed with open arms these days: Atlanta and Dallas. Both the Hawks and the Mavericks are way under the salary cap moving forward and are looking for a big-name player — even one who plays with no heart.
◆ ‘‘Pelicans’’ is now official. Really, New Orleans? Really?
Player of the week
Kevin Durant, Thunder forward: So much for KD looking to be more of a facilitator on offense than a scorer. In his last four games leading up to this weekend, Durant averaged 38.5 points per game, including a 52-point performance in a win at Dallas on Jan. 18.
Team of the week
Nets: After withstanding the mutiny that cost coach Avery Johnson his job, the Nets have turned around their dysfunction to get back on track as one of the top teams in the East. Big wins against the Hawks and New York Knicks highlighted the week for the Nets.
The big five
1. Miami Heat. 2. Thunder.
3. San Antonio Spurs. 4. Clippers. 5. Nets.
.504The free-throw percentage for Howard through 39 games this season, which would be the second-worst of his career. He had a .491 free-throw percentage last season for the Orlando Magic.
Key games for week
of Jan. 28-Feb. 3
Heat at Nets, 7 p.m. Wednesday. The Nets are back on track as one of the hottest teams in the East, and the Heat has been very average on the road.
Bulls at Nets, 6:30 p.m. Friday. Brooklyn seems to be the epicenter of the NBA world next week, with the Bulls making their first visit to the Big Apple’s most popular borough.
Clippers at Boston Celtics, noon next Sunday. Everyone is waiting for the Celtics to flip the switch and play to their capabilities, but time is starting to run out on this aging team.