It's an elimination game that came far earlier than many of us hoped and predicted. Will the wild ride that was the 2008-2009 NBA season end tonight?
We shall see...
I'll be completely up front. I can't stand either the LA Lakers or the Boston Celtics. Sure there's been some past players on these teams that I've always rooted for and loved watching (Magic Johnson, Michael Cooper, James Worthy, Robert Parish) and even a bunch of current players I dig (the Boston Three Party), but that doesn't mean I'm all too happy that these two teams are here in the NBA Finals. Both teams quite possibly have the most homerish announcing crew in all of sports. Their respective fans aren't exactly of We Believe quality either. On one hand you have the obnoxious and whiny Celtics fans who have this odd sense of entitlement to winning and on the other you have Laker fans who collectively might be the dumbest and biggest bandwagon fans in all of sports.
It doesn't help that their clueless front offices happened to luck into some big time big men on the cheap. Until Andrew Bynum plays a full season posting big numbers, Mitch Kupchak is still a poor GM in my book who overrates his youth and wasted 3 years of Kobe Bryant's prime. Likewise, until Danny Ainge assembles a winning team without the help of his old buddies in high places, I'm not buying him as a competent front office lead man.
Still, I just don't want it to end.
Sure the Warriors predictably missed playoffs (like they always do) and faded down the stretch (cutting costs = cutting wins), but this has been one fantastic NBA season. I'd hate to have this season end with a short Finals that only bested last year's Spurs-Cavs nightmare by only one game.
I'm going with the Lake-show tonight. Kobe and Phil Jackson have their legacies at stake. If the Lakers lose in 5 we'll have an endless summer of unfair Kobe-hating instead of appreciation of his unworldly game. To a lesser degree we'll hear endless chatter how Triangle Jackson was just the lucky beneficiary of MJ and Shaq's primes- which is probably true to some extent.
Kobe and Phil know what's at stake. Do you really think they aren't going to go out swinging? The only thing that can stop them is some low hoops IQ end of the game mistake from that flopping Fish whose name I can't recall right now...
Should be a fun one!
Drop your pick for tonight's finals game and all your game thoughts in the comments.