Bulls V.S. Pacers
Somehow the Pacers have managed to keep these games close despite trotting out a lineup with less athleticism and more whiteness than the cast of “The Outsiders.”
However, in the end, they’ve been unable to escape the inevitable beatdown that comes with playing a red-hot Bulls team playing with confidence.
Derrick Rose has singlehandedly elevated his game to the stratosphere, scoring 39 and 36 points in the last two games, respectively. He’s diced his way through the pale lineup like a Slap Chop through hardboiled eggs.
Watching 7’2″ Roy Hibbert shuffle after Rose is like watching Frankenstein try to catch a mongoose. On one drive to the hoop, Rose shook up more unathletic white guys then the San Francisco earthquake in 1906.
The Pacers, to their credit haven’t given up and have continued fighting despite coming up against the most electric player to don Bulls black and Red since #23. Regardless of how close they can keep the games, it appears that they’re headed home early this year after going down 0-2.
This isn’t the last you’ve heard of the Indiana Pacers, however. They’ll once again make the news when they draft BYU guard Jimmer Fredette to add to their lightning quick lineup of honky-power.
Celtics V.S. Knicks
The Knicks and Celtics both made season-altering trades this winter. The Knicks traded 2 Boroughs-worth of people for Carmelo Anthony and the Celts sent Kendrick Perkins to Oklahoma City in an effort to — well, an effort to. . .alright, I admit it: I have no idea what they were thinking trading Kendrick Perkins.
The simple fact of the matter is that neither trade went particularly well. While the Carmelo deal certainly brough some buzz to the Knicks it certainly didn’t bring any more wins and the Celts were rolling some 38-year-old 340 lb. dice, that Shaq would slather on some icy hot, shout “Kazaam” and be back to a dominant force. He hasn’t played since January.
The Celtics won the first game of the series after a late, clutch, three-point bucket by Jesus Shuttlesworth (Ray Allen). TNT, in their infinite wisdom, decided to shatter the previous record for in-game cutaway shots of someone completely un-important to the game by showing Ray Allen’s mom going completely insane each time her son hit a shot.
(*Author’s note: this camera shot, commonly referred to by experts as “The Longoria”, named after Spurs guard Tony Parker’s ex-wife, Eva Longoria who previously held the record at 12 billion.)
Allen, whose mom goes Gloria-James-after-a-bottle-of-Hennessy crazy each time her son hits a shot, had better hope that his Mom doesn’t get too much air time. We know how his teammate Delonte West rolls.
The second game in this series begins tonight and the pressure is squarely on Carmelo Anthony who blundered his way down the stretch against the Celts in game 1, culminating in a bad shot from well beyond three-point range as time expired for the win. Look for Amar’e Stoudemire to continue running wild on the Perkins-less, and suddenly soft, interior of the Celts.
Hawks V.S. Magic
The Hawks, who last year were trounced so thoroughly in the playoffs that their management promptly gave shooting guard Joe Johnson $120 million dollars for his non-efforts, have come out looking focused and ready to play.
Despite giving up an astounding 46 points to Dwight Howard in the paint, the Hawks were able to pull out a victory in game 1.
Normally the Hawks play like a Jerry Bruckheimer movie: a whole lot of flash, a high budget, but no real substance to speak of. However, if they can continue to stay focused and concentrate on shutting down Orlando’s other weapons, (*Author’s note: I’m looking at you, Gilbert Arenas. For multiple reasons.) they have a legitimate shot of hanging in with the Magic.
Heat V.S. 76ers
The Heat have given us something that we all love: a dyed in the wool villain. I’m talking Darth James and Sith Lord Wade. Hell, Chris Bosh certainly looks like a character from “Star Wars” and has apparently allied himself with “the dark side.”
The Heat have become the Yankees on steroids. (*Author’s note: Wait, that already happened. It was called 2003.) They’re Ivan Drago from “Rocky IV.” They’re a cockier, more athletic, version of the Celtics’ “Big 3″ and have had no remorse declaring themselves the soon-to-be best team of all time.
And they drew the 76ers. A team that is too young. Too out of control, as illustrated by their botching of a game earlier in the year after attending a wild Lil Wayne concert. Simply put, they’re tatted up versions of the Ewoks and don’t stand a chance against the evil empire of Miami.
The 76ers kept the first game close, got blown out in game 2, and it’s only fitting that a team with the 2011 version of Benedict Arnold will attempt to shut down a squad named after the American Revolution.
More to Come. . .
I’ll check back in soon with my breakdown of the Western Conference playoffs. Keep tuning in.