According to a story on the Examiner yesterday, Mark Warkentein, VP of Basketball Operations for the Nuggets (pictured above, said he "heading down to Fort Wayne to scout D-League players. There are a few tickets available if anyone wants to join me."
Now, I'm not sure how there were a few tickets available, as Garrett Martz and crew are extraordinary sellers, and are led by Jeff Potter, the Nightmare Ants Boss (who went no tie tonight, (apparently an inside joke?)). Regardless, Warkenstein was apparently at the Mad Ants-Wizards game last night. I watched it, on futurecast, and if I was Mark Warkenstein, these would be my notes, in no particular order. However, I didn't take notes, so these are texts I sent to various people. (Don't even let me know how sick I am for texting people about a 107-88 point D-League game!)
Since it went pretty long, you're going to have to continue on. Trust me, reading my texts from this game will be the most exciting part of your morning. If not, leave a comment and I'll do my best to answer any pressing questions related to the D-League for wasting your time..
And now for received texts and other random musings...
"Where there's action, there's Axon!" This makes no sense, but the play-by-play guy said it everytime Jared Axon scored. Who? I don't know. According to his D-League page, he's 109 years old, 5'11", 180 pounds, went to Eastern Michigan, and had 3 points in two games before this game. Watching this game, however, he may be the best Mad Ant, as he went off for 20 points, 4-for-6 beyond the arc, while contributing four assists and four rebounds in 32 minutes. In the big picture, probably not worth a look. Ever.
- "Haddadi looks Fresh." I was told it's because of the new hair cut for Hamed Haddadi (love this name), in his first game since being sent down again from the Grizzlies. Regardless, even though he fell short of the triple-double it looked like he might reach after the first half, he still scored seven points, grabbed 12 boards, and swatted three shots. He also shot 3-for-9, mostly ill-advised shots from the elbow, also known as the "pinch post" according to my wonderful narrator. He would have had 30 rebounds if he wouldn't tip the ball around and just grab it when it touches his hands. Don't trade for him
- "Walker is in street clothes" This is in reference to Walker Russell, Jr., who was in street clothes. I'm told he's suffering from a bruised tailbone. I'd prefer he gets healthy, because if I'm going to watch the Sunday game, I don't want to watch Jared Axon for 32 minutes. Russell is averaging 16 points and 11 assists on the season. If healthy, he might have been able to impress.
- "Blake has 11 pts 3 assist 5 for 7 in the first" This was said about Blake Ahearn, who came out hot. I think he scored seven straight for the Wizards in the beginning of the first quarter. However, he cooled down after that. Ahearn finished with 15 points and five assists, shooting just 1-for-6 from deep. Not quite the game needed when somebody's watching, as he's averaging 22.6 points and six assists, shooting 47% from 3-point territory. I'll grade him as a "need to watch again."
- "Cut David Bell" This was sent after a random dunk missed by Chris Hunter, in which David Bell got the rebound, ran the two-on-one break, got all the way under the basket, and dribbled it off his knee and out of bounds. Quite possibly the ugliest basketball play of the night. For the game, however, Bell finished with 16 points, 4-for-6 from deep, off the bench. If all I need a 6'1" nice dude from Montana to catch and shoot, nothing else, I'd bring him in.
- "Do they have 30-something dudes do their gameops instead of high school girls?" I think they do. They wore olive t-shirts and khaki pants. Just an interesting observation. They were good, helping little kids shoot on the big hoops, but didn't really bring much attraction to the festivities. I would not call them up.
- "Frisby is flying around like a frisbee... in flight!" Another beauty from the play-by-play guy. I don't even know what it means. Dakota's Will Frisby did have a great game however, showing a lot of poise under the hoop. He finished with 19 points and 10 boards in 26 minutes. While I wouldn't call him up, I'd invite him to play on my Summer League team. Kind of an Elton Brown type dude.
- "Think I found my new job... gonna dress up in spandex and wave a tennis racket while playing with a toilet seat at your games.. How much will you pay?" I sent this to Wizards GM Tom Wagganer. The halftime act seemed was rubber boy. The futurecast didn't have any music, and thus it was awkward watching. Wagganer replied $10,000 if I could fit into the box "Rubber Boy" fit in as he was carried off. Myself being about 6'4", 275 pounds, I'm probably going to have to find another profession. I would not hire me for halftime entertainment.
- "Did you lose audio?" For some reason, the Fort Wayne audio feed was turned down going into breaks and then they usually forgot to turn it back up for about 15 minutes. Sitting at home on a Friday night WITHOUT PLAY-BY-PLAY is not cool. Help me out, Ants. I will not call up the Mad Ants sound crew.
- "Return of the Boom Tho?" Rod Benson had a good game for a change. Surprisingly, it was once an NBA-assigned player who plays his same position was assigned. Benson came off the bench to score 12 points, grab 10 boards, and swat two shots. I would give him a look if I was looking for a more athletic, different writing style Paul Shirley.
- "Where there's action, there's Axon!" This makes no sense, but the play-by-play guy said it everytime Jared Axon scored. Who? I don't know. According to his D-League page, he's 109 years old, 5'11", 180 pounds, went to Eastern Michigan, and had 3 points in two games before this game. Watching this game, however, he may be the best Mad Ant, as he went off for 20 points, 4-for-6 beyond the arc, while contributing four assists and four rebounds in 32 minutes. In the big picture, probably not worth a look. Ever.
- "Holy cow call him up!" In reference to Blake's big first quarter.
- "It's the haircut...still can't finish" In reference to Hamed Haddadi looking fresh.
- "man the Wiz are good" The Wizards outscored Fort Wayne 25-12 in the third. They looked really good tonight.
- "I just went back to look.. Moe really stepped it up" In reference to Mo Baker, Dakota's point guard, who had 16 points and 10 boards.
- "I know! English got 16 min!" In reference to Carlos English, who had played 16 minutes combined in the last four games he appeared in. He didn't impress however, scoring two points with two turnovers and an assist.