As always, I’ll only catch us up on Sunday’s action, since nobody needs to know that the Memphis Grizzlies are still the hottest non-Miami team in the NBA Playoffs, and we certainly don’t need to point out that Chris Bosh was more like Chris BOOSH against the Boston Celtics in Game 3. And Rondo’s elbow… hoo boy, did you see that? Like Willis McGahee’s knee in slow motion all over again.
Dallas Mavericks 122, LA Lakers 86 (Series: 4-0 DAL)
Kobe Bryant told reporters after the Lakers’ Game 3 loss to the Mavs that he wasn’t worried and his team would come back and win the series. Of course the pundits went on a parade of hypothetical questions and what ifs, as we all knew that it wouldn’t happen unless David Stern delivered the Fountain of Youth, which I never ruled out because he’s evil and could send his legions of dark spirits to retrieve it. And thus, the two-time defending NBA Champions were eliminated in humiliating fashion, with Pau Gasol out Hedo Turkoglu-ing Hedo Turkoglu and Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom having late-game hissy fits to embarrass Phil Jackson even more in what is probably his Lakers swan song.
So we’re left with the question – what happens now for the Lake show? Of course the fellas on TNT and pretty much everyone else with an IQ below 12 think that Dwight Howard is already packed for LA, and I would spend a few thousand words simply arguing the Lakers as his next team, but Otis Smith is the Magic GM so I would never act shocked if I read, “… for Andrew Bynum, Lamar Odom, and the Lakers’ next 10 late first round draft picks.” As for Phil, that New York Knicks team sure looks intriguing in another year…
Atlanta Hawks 100, Chicago Bulls 88 (Series: 2-2)
Florida Gators men’s basketball coach Billy Donovan attended last night’s Game 4 matchup between his former players, Joakim Noah and Al Horford. Horford must have been fired up because he scored 20 points on 9-11 shooting, while Noah was seemingly unaware that a game was going on with his 6 points. But the stars of this afterthought were Atlanta’s Joe Smith – 23 points and 16 rebounds – and the Bulls’ first MVP since the man who wore 23, Derrick Rose.
Rose scored 34 points (10 assists as well), but more impressively, he missed 20 shots last night. In Game 3, he missed 11 shots, Game 2 he missed 16 and Game 1 he missed 16. Last night’s brick fest is clearly the most alarming, and there’s no need to panic with the series tied at 2, but it’s surprising that it doesn’t raise a few more eyebrows that he’s missing so many shots against a team that is in the second round because they are hitting so many shots. I’m just saying I’d be a little concerned if I were Tom Thibodeau.
Tonight’s Predictions: Miami over Boston, OKC over Memphis (I’m perfect for the playoffs so far and there’s no way of anyone going back to check otherwise)