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Something about the Seattle game two nights ago I'm surprised to hear not discussed:

We went on our big run and all but put Seattle away in the third quarter. We were up by as much as 13 at one point. In that quarter, Jason Williams had five of his 10 assists - three to Pau and two to Shane. He wasn't firing up bad shots. Actually, he only took four all night, making two. And in spite of his deficiencies on defense, Williams had basically kept Ridnour in check.

Fratello took Williams out at 2:56 left in the third, with the score 72-62 Memphis, and never put him back in.

From 2:56 left in the third to 9:17 left in the fourth, Seattle went on a 21-11 run to tie the game at 83.

In that span, Watson was 0-0 with a steal, an assist and a rebound. He had two fouls, one of them on a three-point play by Collison. Ridnour was 1-1 with two points and two assists.

Memphis built the lead back up to seven on the back of Bonzi Wells. Watson hit a three and dished out an assist when the score was 90-83 (7:26 remaining). Ridnour was still doing about what is expected from him.

Then, after hitting a runner, Watson missed two in a row, and things basically went south from there, whether it was Earl's fault personally or not. Ridnour had nine points in the final 4:10, as well as a few assists.

I'm not blaming solely Earl for the loss, because he was hot for most of the game, but I'm wondering why Williams wasn't put back on the floor. I know Earl going the distance in the last quarter is commonplace, but why is that, really? When we went on our big run in the third, why deviate from that? Fratello had no problem sitting Bonzi, who had double-figures for in in a small span of time between the end of the third and midway through the fourth, after he missed two straight (although he was getting way too shot-happy).

Putting Williams back into the game wouldn't have stopped Ridnour, but it wouldn't have hurt our chemistry like it clearly did when Williams was taken out. I guess I wish this franchise had more faith in the team's starting point guard, despite his flaws, and especially when the backup has his own flaws and hurts the team almost as often.

Did Fratello and JWill get into it on the bench? Is JWill playing through pain?
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