Rocks v Lions 16/01/15
A guest blog by Andy
This game would become memorable for everything bar the on-court action itself.
These blogs tend to start with reference to Kirsty, a car, and some sort of driving scenario. Let’s stick with that.
It was snowing. Badly.
This weeks driving question. Where’s the road markings?! Would you have carried on or went straight up the road? I work on Argyle Street, so the journey wasn’t too bad. I probably wouldn’t have made it from the house though.
As much as the idea of having a Rocks chauffeur appeals, it’s probably worth pointing out that it’s not the same Kirsty that drives Stuart and I to all the Rocks games. Handsome chaps like us can get a “burd” each, we don’t need to go haufers. It’s also worth pointing out that I was married until I referred to Kirsty as a “burd” in the previous sentence. Anyone got a spare room?
We actually got to the Emirates early. We abandoned the car (the concept of using a proper space died long before we got there) and got a cup of tea – each. I’m generous like that. Tip was delayed until 1945, so we waited until 1915 to take our seats.
The game itself was a bit back and forth – relatively close the whole way through. We did have a bit of a 2nd quarter wobble but it was balanced out by a decent 1st. Despite the crowd being the lowest for quite a few years, the crowd were louder than i’ve heard for quite some time. Those who did make it through the ice and the snow did an amazing job of creating an atmosphere, ably led by those with tooters!
The Lions have a player named Ian Salter. He’s 6ft 11 with a decent beard. He’s the sort of bloke you’d expect to be barring the path to the basket and giving no quarter to anyone who comes near. I think he would’ve been better going outside as an *actual* salter and giving the Emirates staff a hand to clear the paths. 5 fouls in 10 minutes, most of them for flapping at Kieron Achara like an angry, injured swan. I felt bad for the guy. I almost felt like running on court and giving him a hug. Given how grim his performance was, I reckon G4S would’ve allowed it in the interests of mercy.
I read a piece the day after the game where it was suggested that Kieron Achara might have ice cold blood running through his veins, such is his coolness in high pressure moments. He denied it. Deny it all you like, big chap. We know the truth!
The Rocks and the Lions traded baskets down to the final moments. Towards the end Kieron Achara made a couple of hugely important free throws to level the game at 86 each. Zaire Taylor then went up the court and missed. Then, with mere seconds on the clock, JaJuan Smith drove to the basket.
The crowd held their breath.
As he approached the paint, the defence collapsed inwards then…. he kicked it back out to Sterling Davis! Coach quickly passed off to Kieron Achara who, with less than 3 seconds remaining, drained the threeeee! A great play. With the remaining 2 seconds on the clock, the Lions attempted a 3 and missed (I missed out a boring bit about fouls in here). The Rocks crowd went wild!
Then someone else went wild.
In a scene I can only describe as the angriest strip show i’ve ever seen, the Lions coach, Vince Macaulay, overheated. He stormed towards the table officials, throwing his suit jacket to the ground in disgust. Thankfully the Lions bench held him back before he could get the trousers off too!
You can view it here courtesy of Kenny Breckenridge.
What followed after was even more controversial. In a rant more akin to a raging football manager than a basketball coach, Vince then took to twitter to inform us that the local refs were “cheating”.View it here on the hoopsfix website.
I’d like to defend the refs at this point. Many things have been said about Chris Dodds over the years. A “homer” he is not. I personally think he’s gruffer than the Gruffalo. However, I believe he does a decent job and does it with integrity.
Anyway, we all went home happy (albeit very slowly). Kudos to East Dunbartonshire Council for doing a great job gritting the way home for me. Thumbs down for their Glasgow equivalent! The ice man came, as did the snowman. Onwards to the Falkirk game and a court that was to be colder inside than outside….