Thursday, June 17, 2010
Behind The Scoreboard
NBA title series heats up
This NBA championship series between the Celtics and the Lakers continues to gather more and more press. If you notice practically 24 hours following a game, the coverage is almost non-stop. One has to admit that these contests between the two historically great teams at the highest level have been anything but dull. And one doesn’t have to wait long to find a lively discussion on the subject.
Wayne Stinson, formerly of Auto Zone, has taken the reins of Raines Grocery on Hernando Road on the outskirts of Holly Springs. Wayne is always ready to discuss whichever sport is in vogue. And beware, he will try to pin you down. He is leaning toward a Lakers victory. We certainly wish him well in his latest venture.
Some time ago, this columnist offhandedly conceded this series to the Lakers and Kobe Bryant (or was that Kobe Bryant and the Lakers? Whatever!). However after Sunday’s game in Boston, some of the soothsayers are slightly lowering the Lakers’ banner and inching in the direction of the Celtics. Actually, some of the unofficial polls on Sunday overwhelmingly preferred the Shamrock boys as winners – a series win which would give them their 18th NBA title.
One point on which everyone seems to agree is that the boys from Bean Town just don’t up and quit. A few for instances – in game three, the first tie-breaker of the series, Boston battled right down to the last second. Unlike the Cavaliers, they conceded nothing. Their position has strengthened since the double-barreled victories on Thursday and Sunday. Even with the changing venue (back to L.A.) for Tuesday, Celtics coach Doc Rivers says that they will still have to rely on their defense. Rivers just might be on to something. They have held the Lakers below 100 in three consecutive games. However, Bryant went back to his 30-plus scoring (38).
Game five really came down to a contest between Bryant and the Celtics’ Paul Pierce. At one point, Kobe asked his coach (Phil Jackson) to change his defensive assignment to Pierce, but Phil opted to stay with his choice (Ron Artest).
The coach just might have to rethink his stance on Tuesday night (after press deadline for this week’s newspaper).
Number 24 is going to be pretty upset if they don’t knot this series in a 3-3 and force a seventh game.
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