Yahoo! Sports scribe Marc J. Spears started a Twitter debate on Tuesday night when he asked his 140,000-plus followers what was the most embarrassing outcome on the basketball floor:
More embarrassing for an NBA player to get dunked on hard or to fall to hardwood after being crossed over?— Marc J. Spears (@SpearsNBAYahoo) February 27, 2013
As is the case with most great debates, there was first an event to inspire his question.
Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry and Indiana Pacers point guard George Hill were engaged in an enthralling back-and-forth individual matchup in the teams' meeting on Tuesday night. The duo combined for 40 first-half points, with Curry carrying a slight 23-17 edge into intermission.
But it wasn't the numbers or the leadership qualities that had people buzzing after 24 minutes of action.
Rather, it was Curry's masterful crossover and Hill's subsequent tumble that sparked a mini frenzy on Twitter:
Steph Curry out there breaking ankles in Indiana.— Kevin Pelton (@kpelton) February 27, 2013
George Hill needs his ankle re-taped. Curry might have been harder on him than Irving on Knight in JV Game.— Marc J. Spears (@SpearsNBAYahoo) February 27, 2013
The veteran Hill knew where the play was headed, even if his ankles didn't. He yanked on the left leg of a passing Curry, who then made his own crash landing.
The benefits of Hill's spur-of-the-moment idea were twofold. For starters, he prevented Curry from earning an and-one opportunity, which only looked better when the 90.6 percent free-throw shooter split the pair.
It also limited the play's shelf life, as a little of the luster was lost when Curry couldn't finish the drive with a layup.
Still, if we've learned anything from the world of streetball, it's that the setups are just as important as the finishes, probably even more important in that realm. And this play certainly had its share of streetball appeal to it:
The streetball came out of me a bit when Curry just crossed up George Hill ... I was ready to run on the court and scream "Oh Baby!"— Marcus Thompson (@gswscribe) February 27, 2013
But while Curry had everyone laughing at Hill, the Pacers point guard may be on his way to enjoying the last laugh.
Indiana took an 85-73 lead into the fourth quarter.