Thursday, June 3, 2010

Lakers & Celtics in the 2010 NBA Finals

I have a confession: I hate the Celtics.

It seems like I have hated them since I was a child. Perhaps that is because I watched them beat my team, the Lakers (with Jerry West, Elgin Baylor, Wilt Chamberlain and Gail Goodrich) so many times while I was growing up (6xs!). I got a little revenge in the 1980's when Magic, Kareem and Worthy beat them twice, even though they also lost once to them. Then two years ago the the luck of the Irish struck again.

Some classy players I have always admired have played for them, like Jojo White, Dennis Johnson, Nate Archibald, Paul Westphal, John Havlicek, even Bill Russel. Nevertheless I still don't like them. As cliché as it is, my two favorite teams are the Lakers and anyone else that is playing against the Celtics.

I am 50% Irish but I hate the Celtics with 100% of my being. I can't stand the green uniform, the parquet floor or the smoke from Red Auerbach's cigar. The smug look on Paul Pierce's face turns my stomach.

I just watched the first game of another NBA finals with the Lakers against the Celtics. I am nervous about it as I do not want to see my team lose again to the dreaded green leprechaun.

I found an important stat that has me encouraged a bit after watching the Lakers win the first game: Phil Jackson coached teams have won 100% of the 47 playoff series they have played in when 1st game is a victory. 47 wins...0 loses! Wow, that is an intimidating stat if your favorite color is green. Of course that is the kind of stat that is easy to slough off as fabricated by the media.

Yeah, but ten NBA championships for Jackson (one more than Auerbach BTW) and 47 series is a lot, and not once has Jackson lost a series after winning the first game.

A coincidence? Bill Plaschke, Times Sports writer, wrote:

“Smarter people than us say it is not. I thought about Boston, and thought about MIT, and decided that, yes, I should consult with someone from the brainiest university in the country. So I called the folks from Caltech (ouch). A couple of grad students in applied and computational mathematics —Stephen Becker and Mike McCoy — figured that the odds of going 47-0 by coincidence were less than three in a billion.”

Less than 3:1,000,000,000 I like those odds!

Nevertheless, I will be at the edge of my seat for every game. I seriously doubt that Kevin Garnett cares much about such a number. One win does not win a series.

C'mon Lakers!

Okay, don't comment that I am being overly passionate about a frivolous thing. I know its only basketball, but it is the Lakers!


Anonymous said...

I'm with you, Neal. '08 was heartbreaking, as LA gave the series away. I'm much more confident this year! Maybe Jack can get in Doc Rivers' ear more this go 'round!

missional girl said...

I have been a die-hard fan since I was about 6 or 7. That was just the time Magic was a rookie and tearing up the league.

As for the Celtics, I despise them as much as I do the Red Sox. Go Lakers! Please!

Neil Cole said...

Pau Gasol gave Kevin Garnett some motivational ammunition yesterday in the media session. I hope it doesn't backfire on him.

Abbey said...

Go Celtics!

Nick K said...

Hey I hate the Celtics too! But it's for another reason. I'm from Detroit and I am a Pistons fan. The shockwaves of "there's a steal by Bird" continue through my head until this very day. I also don't like the Bulls, Cavs, Lakers and Robert Horry.

Neil Cole said...

Nick, the Pistons are my second most hated team! But if it were between the Celtics and the Bad Boys I'd cheer for the Pistons.

Neil Cole said...

Another stat: Since the league went to a 2-3-2 series the team that won the third game when they were tied before it at one a piece has won the championship 100% of the time. Of course there has only been 8 times this has happened.

You gotta love these media manufactured stats to get us all hyped up about a game.

Lakers look good right now.

What's up with Ray Allen? Almost two record breaking games in a for most 3 pointers made in a game and the next for most consecutive misses without a single field goal.

This is a fun series.

Neil Cole said...

Game 7 on Thursday @ Staples Center!!! Wow, you couldn't script a more nerve wracking and competitive NBA finals. I just hope the script includes a win for LA!

Neil Cole said...

Whew! Lakers in seven! What a series that was. Yeah Lakers.

Anonymous said...

Hey Neal,

Congrats to your Lakers. I don't feel Kobe deserved the MVP though. Seriously...what MVP can go 6 - 24 shooting in a game 7, still win and take the MVP. Weak. Give it to Pau or at least Co-MVP.
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