Varstiyoptimism’s Pre-NBA Finals Routine –
Step A: Wake up in a cold sweat screaming and cursing the names of Kevin McHale, John Havlicek and Danny Ainge.
Step B: Pace around bedroom screaming at and punching anything green.
Step C: Marinate in ESPN Classic’s nonstop NBA Finals marathon.
Step D: Repeat Step B.
Step E: Pinch self to see if this Lakers/Celtics matchup is real.
Step F: Look at calendar to see if it is Thursday yet (if calendar is green, repeat steps B and D).
Step G: Fall asleep to the sweet sights of the Lakers in 1985 hoisting up the trophy on that parquet floor.
Now, after nearly one week of that grueling and mentally draining schedule, the Finals (written in cursive) are here!
Gone are Kareem and Worthy’s goggles, Magic’s grin, Larry Birds afro-mullet and trash-stache, McHale’s paperwhite skin, and questionable smoke emanating from the Chief’s nostrils.
They have been replaced by Pau’s vulture-esque appearance, Kobe’s butterfly tattoo, Kevin Garnett’s weird pube-like goatee and an adorable extraterrestrial critter named Sam Cassell.
It is Really Happening: Lakers and Celtics in the NBA Finals. The last time this happened, yours truly was 10 months away from being BORN! LOST was a full 17 years from premiering! I will finally have a reason to hate the Celtics besides the blind, shrieking anger I felt from musty old videotapes.
Let’s just hope Brian Scalabrine doesn’t clothesline Sash.
So, gone are the Gahden and the Fabulous Forum. Gone is Riles and gone is Red. Suffice it to say, this is not 1987. This is not 1966. This is 2008: a whole new era of the Green & White versus the Purple & Gold.
Varsity Prediction: If there is a God, Lakers in five!
National: ABC (Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy & Mark Jackson)
Los Angeles: AM570 KLAC (Spero Dedes & Mychal Thompson).
Boston: WRKO 680 AM (Sean Grande & Cedric Maxwell).
- Out: T. Allen (Achilles)
- Out: A. Bynum (Knee)
- Will Play: K. Bryant (Pinkie)
Laker Offense vs. Celtic Defense: Kobe said it himself when asked what Celtic basketball is. He remarked that there was nothing special, just “great defense all the time”. The Lakers high velocity and astute offense will run smack into the Celtics robust defense. Good thing the Lakers are hitting a defensive stride at the right time.
Juxtaposition: “I guess that’s one thing I’m happy I did not win.” That was Kobe Bryant referring to a conversation he and Paul Pierce had last summer at UCLA regarding who would be traded first. Just remember that one year ago, the Lakers were in shambles and the C’s were withering away, lamenting their lottery misfortunes. What a difference a year (and two blockbuster trades) makes.
Varsity Challenge –
(Prize – a certificate stating that you are “Wicked Smahhhhht”.)
How freaken excited are you for this series?