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June 16, 2008

[Business Day One] Game Six Wish List

Filed under: Basketball,Business Day One — Tags: , , , , , — Serpico @ 10:02 am

Since Dick Bavetta led Los Angeles to victory with a dozen assists (and a couple of gritty rebounds), there will be a Game Six in Boston on Tuesday.  This Lakers-Celtics NBA Finals will wear on for at least one more game.  And I need to make my hopes for it known.  This isn’t an entry so much as a plea to the Gods of Sport.  And to them, I pray today:

 

Gods of Sport, please allow Kevin Garnett to hang 25 points (including eight in the final four minutes) and 15 rebounds on the Lakers, thus removing his “wilts under pressure” stigma.

 

Gods of Sport, please empower the Celtics fans to come up with more hurtful and offensive chants to direct at Kobe Bryant.

 

Gods of Sport, please sooth and refresh the various ailing joints of Kendrick Perkins, Rajon Rondo and Paul Pierce, that they may do your will.

 

Gods of Sport, please give Pau Gasol the grains and wild greens he needs to survive.

 

Gods of Sport, please inspire the New Kids on the Block to hold a free concert on the Boston Common if the Celtics win.

 

Gods of Sport, please let Boston finish this.

May 22, 2008

Will June’s Final Teams Bring Back The Magic?

The 1988 NBA Finals remains one of the greatest championships ever.

Why don’t we rank the best NBA Finals?

You can’t walk a straight line in bookstores without stumbling over some Greatest Super Bowls tome or The Fall Classic: We Remember solemnly poking out from the shelves. The NBA’s championship is far more suspect, the nature of the game makes seven taut games nearly impossible. Stars, or even simply good players, on a championship team account for 20+% of a team’s output on the court. Losing that for one game mostly ensures defeat. Home court is also advantageous for an NBA team in the playoffs more than hockey (where just playing seems to be the important thing), football (no home advantage in a Super Bowl), or even baseball (pitching matchups dictate advantages). Look at the New Orleans – San Antonio series, with seven grueling games providing a dinghy’s worth of highlights. Every other game was a blowout, double digit homecourt slapping, while only Game Seven met its classic billing, where a road team actually won a close game. Jannero Pargo missed a 3 pointer to tie the game up with two minutes left, Tony Parker glided over a Tim Duncan screen and stroked a j, and that was the whole piñata. The final result exists like some propaganda; the Spurs only won because someone told you they did. Who are you to remember any of it? (more…)

June 14, 2007

Don’t Blame LeBron, Blame the Funk

So, the Cavs went and got swept. Watching game 4– no, wait, I don’t want to lie, I (like most of the American people) failed to watch any of the NBA Finals, or, well, any of the semis, or in fact, any basketball since they cut away from that Knicks-Rockets game for the OJ chase. Where was I? Oh yeah, I forced myself to watch the last 2 minutes, in adherence with my long-held belief that the last 2 minutes of any given basketball game is the only part worth watching. Impressions: walked into a low-scoring game, Spurs playing well, Varejao’s hair is outstanding, these guys have spent an awful lot of time in the tattoo studio. 1.9 seconds left: Manu Ginobili is not who you want to be putting on the line. Nice pair of threes at the end, that’s a tough beat for LeBron and Co.

And holy shit, I cannot get that fucking filet-o-fish ad out of my head.

Well, cheer up Cleveland, neither the McDonald’s ad nor the Cavs’ truly pitiable performance in this series is LeBron’s fault. It’s tough to carry an entire team, let alone the hopes and dreams of a championship-starved city, and I’d imagine the pressure could get to even the most super of heroes. And to go up against Duncan, Ginobili, and that guy who’s marrying the slutty desperate housewife, well, that’s not gonna help matters any. But to LeBron’s credit, Tim Duncan had nothing but praise for the ‘kid’ in his postgame interview. Indeed, I think it’s safe to say the finest thing that can be said of an NBA player in regards to LeBron James: that he never fakes the funk on a nasty dunk, to wit:

Badass.

But the “Cavs Scream Team?” Well, they faked the funk. They popped and locked pretty well, but I think history will show that they faked the funk with a …purple …thingy. And that left the Spurs a cakewalk to the title, free of possible interference from the funk.

(more…)

June 11, 2007

[Business Day One] A Wish List

I had a dream last night about the end of the world. No joke. I was at a dock in Florida, talking to some people I knew, when we started hearing the detonations of atomic bombs in the distance. A giant tidal wave slammed into the harbor where I was, destroying the boats in the water and homes on the hills. And, in that way you just know things in dreams, I knew this was happening all over the country. Waking up in a cold sweat this morning (or was that ocean water), I was thankful to be alive. I started going through the mental list of all the things that weren’t actually destroyed that I was happy about. Family, friends, hobbies, burritos and the sweet escape of sport.

Scared to go back to sleep right away, I kept my mind occupied by thinking about what I want to see happen in the world of sports, now that I had a new lease on life. I crafted a Wish List that I want to present here to the Gods of Sport, that they may hear and abide. So, mighty and just Gods of Sport, hear me, for I seek only what will make your purview stronger!

Please allow the Spurs to win in four games.

(more…)

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