Socrates, the classical Greek philosopher, is credited with a lot of really insightful quotes, like “an unexamined life is not worth living,” and “the only true wisdom is knowing you know nothing.” And let’s not forget his classic, “be suspicious of combining two good things.” Okay, that wasn’t Socrates, that was actually my childhood friend Damian, but it’s as wise as anything the founder of western philosophy said. Growing up, we would go see the Allman Brothers every Fourth of July and Damian couldn’t understand why the Brothers insisted on playing on the holiday every year. The Fourth is already guaranteed to be a killer party, why throw another killer party on top of it? Why not play a show on the fifth and then we’d all have two awesome days in a row instead of jamming everything into a single day. It’s solid logic that I think even Socrates would appreciate. Christmas is great, and while it might be tempting to combine Christmas and Easter into the same day, with maybe a live broadcast of the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus going at it Greco-Roman style, I think we can all agree that it’s best to spread those two holidays out. There’s only so much fun you can have on a single day before it just becomes white noise. I tend to apply that same philosophy when it comes to beer, too. Beer is great and so are things like chocolate and bananas and Christmas trees, so it might be tempting to combine two or more great things into a single package. That’s how you get Jelly Bean IPAs and Old Bay Lagers. These beers sound like a great idea, but they rarely work out and I usually find myself wishing I could separate all of the ingredients so that I could enjoy a bowl of Jelly Beans next to my IPA. So I was suspicious when Sweetwater released Pulled Porter, a bacon smoked flavored beer that, at first glance, feels a little bit like watching Santa and the Easter Bunny wrestle. Too much of a good thing, maybe even a little sacrilegious. But this beer works. The Atlanta-based brewery partnered with Fox Brothers, arguably the best barbecue joint in the city to create the smoky, pork profile. Over three days, Fox Brothers smoked one ton of malt along with racks of bacon on their wood-burning smoker. Sweetwater used that malt to give this porter a smoky, bacony element that’s strong without being overwhelming. You get a hint of bacon, but it’s not like you’re drinking a bacon milkshake. Look for the beer in four packs this winter. And in case you’re wondering, I already applied for a trademark on the term “bacon milkshake.”Related:
“We were down 1-0 in the series, so we wanted to come out and play better,” said Brooks, who watched Durant receive his MVP trophy from NBA commissioner Adam Silver prior to the tipoff. “That was our first line of adjustment; we wanted to play a better basketball game. And we did that. We have a prideful group of guys. We didn’t like the way we executed the last game and we rectified that by playing much better.“Our execution was better, our energy was better. Everything was better. We were connected to one another for 48 minutes.”Durant and Russell Westbrook both had terrific games for OKC, and they got help from the likes of Serge Ibaka, Thabo Sefolosha and Kendrick Perkins. Durant led the way with 32 points, 12 rebounds and nine assists. Westbrook, playing in very animated fashion — he had a running dunk that was thrilling to watch — scored 31 points. He also had 10 assists and 10 rebounds, six on the offensive end. Ibaka and Sefolosha contributed 14 points apiece and Perkins had eight points and nine rebounds.The Thunder outrebounded the Clippers 52-36. OKC shot 50.6 percent from the field, 34.8 from 3-point range. The Clippers shot 44.6 percent, 33.3 percent from beyond the 3-point line, a far cry from the 51.7 percent they shot from there in Game 1. Chris Paul was nothing but complimentary.“They were just aggressive,” said Paul, who took two early fouls and sat out the final 6:41 of the first quarter. “I think Russ (Westbrook) probably played harder than all of us. He was all over the place, and we’ve gotta play better. We have to defend a little bit better.”Paul said it was tough for him to defend the way he might have been able to because of the early foul trouble, but he did not use that as an excuse.Blake Griffin had an off night for the Clippers, as did sixth man Jamal Crawford. Griffin finished with 15 points on 5-of-13 shooting from the field. Crawford, who is so vital to the bench play, had a really poor game, making just two of his 13 shots to finish with seven points. J.J. Redick led the Clippers with 18 points, Paul had 17 points and 11 assists.Los Angeles trailed 61-56 at halftime and was down by 20 late in the third. The Clippers did well to pull within 12 points at 94-82 with 10:02 to play, and even got to within 11 points with just over two minutes to go after going back down again by 20. By that time the reserves were in and Clippers coach Doc Rivers did not put his starters back in the game. “Energy found the ball,” Rivers said, praising the effort by the Thunder. “Russell Westbrook, offensive rebounds. Because it was a loose ball, the energy found it. Perk did it over and over again, Sefolosha did it over and over again. And so that’s why they won the game.” Durant was also asked if he thought his much-talked about speech had anything to do with his team playing so much better. Like his coach, he would not say that.“I think it was more fueled because we lost by 20 points (actually 17) last game,” Durant said. “Guys were pissed off and we came back and responded. We just went out there and played extremely hard.”Westbrook intimated the help from the others helped tremendously.“I thought those guys did a great job,” he said. “They were confident, taking their shots when they were open.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error OKLAHOMA CITY >> Oklahoma City Thunder coach Scott Brooks was asked Wednesday before Game 2 of his team’s Western Conference semifinals series against the Clippers if Kevin Durant’s emotional MVP acceptance speech a day earlier might help motivate his team to victory. He wouldn’t quite go there.Brooks was asked after his team defeated the Clippers 112-101 before 18,203 amped-up fans at Chesapeake Energy Arena if it had anything to do with it. He still wouldn’t say for sure that it did. He did, however, admit that his team played a much better game with considerably more juice.The fans seemed to feel that extra burst, too. With the game winding down, the PA announcer informed everyone that they should consider staying inside because of possible severe weather. Some fans left, but many stayed. It was as if they wanted to bask in the glory a bit longer.The series is tied 1-1. Game 3 is Friday at Staples Center.