Celebrating Cinco de Mayo with LaPhonso Ellis
On this night of Cinco de Mayo, the Denver Nuggets square off against the Dallas Mavericks, playing in the second game of their first 2nd round series since ’93-94.
In 1994, Denver became the first #8 seed to beat a #1 seed in the NBA playoffs (they only played a five game series back then). Pivotal game four of that series was played on May 5th. Dikembe Mutombo led the Nugs with eight blocks, to go along with 10 points and 16 boards.
But it was the play of LaPhonso Ellis in game four which allowed Denver a chance to return to Seattle and win game five. Ellis dropped 27 points and 17 rebounds on the squad formerly known as the Sonics. Both those numbers remain playoff highs for Ellis. Of course, he only played in 16 career playoff games, 12 coming that year with Denver, and four coming in ’00-01 with Minnesota.
You want more? Well, that night, and today, Cinco de Mayo, happens to be LaPhonso Ellis’ birthday.
So, in a random tribute to Ellis, who shares a b-day with Harold “Baby Jordan FAIL” Miner, and former Wizards training camp/pre-season participant, DerMarr Johnson, I present a YouTube clip of a LaPhonso Ellis monster block.
Still can’t decide who I want to win the Mavs-Nugs series. Don’t really like cats like J.R. Smith and Kenyon Martin, but I completely respect cats like Chris Anderson and Chauncey Billups. I suppose I ultimately want Denver to advance … they’d have a better “chance” against the Lakers, if they even get past Houston.
That’s all I got.
- Carmelo Anthony will turn 25 on May 29th, same b-day as Raef LaFrentz, whom Denver drafted the last time they had the 3rd overall pick (’98) prior to taking ‘Melo with the third after LeBron and Darko in ’03. Denver has held the 3rd overall pick one other time, in ’90 when they drafted Chris Jackson (Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf) out of LSU. Abdul-Rauf was on that famed ’93-94 Denver team.
- LaPhonso Ellis is currently a basketball radio analyst for his alma mater, Notre Dame.