Before the Western Conference Semifinals series between the L.A. Clippers and Houston Rockets began, a GSoM poll showed that many people were rooting for the Clippers.
And the Clippers appeared to be cruising to an easy series win in five or six games before the Rockets decided to actually play ball and get back into this thing.
I was among those who made the decision to turn Game 6 off a bit early — sometime during the third quarter, I wrote up a thing about how the Warriors would begin the Western Conference Finals on Sunday if they won Game 6 on Friday and just moved on with life. As jakegarcia of The Dream Shake wrote, "Who would want to watch a basketball game that looked like that third quarter? AGAIN." I feel you, Jake...and I had already made up my mind about who was going to win.
So I drifted off to sleep for a bit.
It wasn't until I woke up late that night that I realized the Clips had managed to lose.
I thought the recap at Clips Nation for Game 6 sort of captures what I've felt about the flow of the series as a whole.
It looked like the Clippers were on their way to another blowout win after a great third quarter, leading 89-70 with less than 15 minutes standing between them and their first-ever Conference Finals Appearance...From that point, Houston mounted a 49-18 run, winning the final frame 40-15 — with James Harden on the bench for almost all of it. The Clippers had only scored 12 points in the fourth quarter until a meaningless three rolled in at the buzzer, the sort of shot that wasn't falling all night.
Right now, the Clippers are on the verge of a series collapse, which could be seen as draining for a potential Western Conference Finals appearance against the rival Warriors or maybe inspiring in a renewed life sense.
On the other hand, if the Rockets fall asleep again against the Warriors...good luck winning a game in the conference finals...
Actually, the most popular sentiment prior to the second round about the Clippers-Rockets series was the random alternative: "Who cares - the Warriors will smoke either." So now I ask a slightly different question than before: who are you rooting for today based upon who you think is the better opponent for the Warriors, given what you saw in the second round and the health of all involved?