Monday, June 15, 2009

NBA Finals Recap

Much like my Stanley Cup Finals recap from yesterday I am going to be going over some of the main issues I had with the series and then some observations I made. The series was not as entertaining as the Stanley Cup Finals but considering it wasn't Kobe vs LeBron it was still solid.

The Legend of Kobe

I wrote a few weeks ago that if Kobe Bryant and the Lakers won the NBA championship this year that Kobe would become the 3rd best guard ever. He did and he is. Kobe was unreal all series scoring at least 30 points in every game and leading the Lakers in assists as well. A lot was made of his scoring in the series but for me the biggest plays he made were passes in game 4 when he found Derek Fisher in overtime for the big 3 and Pau Gasol with the behind the back pass. Kobe really showed how well rounded his game is.

As for his legacy he can now say that he won a championship as the best player and end all the talk of him not being able to do it without Shaq. I am a Kobe fan so I was pumped when they won although his Jordan style jumping and fist pumping was pretty weak. Be original.

Superman Goes Invisible

So did Dwight Howard use UPS or Fed Ex to mail in his performance in game 5? Seriously it was one of the saddest displays I gave ever seen. A player that at times can be so dominant look so awful is just sad. Howard scored just 10 points and added 11 boards in 39 minutes. He got into foul trouble and look scared. If he wants to make the next step in his career he going to have to start showing that he can do more than just dunk and block shots out of bounds.

While I am on the subject why don't any big men use the Sky Hook? All it did was make Kareem Abdul Jabbar the greatest scorer of all-time and yet no one uses it today. If Dwight Howard would add a sky hook into his game he would win the next mvp award hands down. It would easily add 6-8 points per game to his stat sheet. Makes 0 sense to me why no one uses it.

Difficult Decisions

The Lakers are going to have to come down off the championship high quickly because the organization has some tough decisions to make. Both Lamar Odom and Trevor Ariza are becoming free agents and it looks as though 1 of them is going to have to go.

Odom is the true definition of an X factor because if he is playing well the Lakers don't lose but he is so inconsistent. Ariza is an emerging star and played amazing all playoffs. Ariza is only 23 while Odom is 29. Odom wants to be a starter and may not like having to play behind Gasol and Andrew Bynum but he has stated many times he wants to live by the beach meaning he will either be a Laker or a Clipper and no one wants to be a Clipper. As for Ariza he will demand close to $5 million a season and will be worth every penny. If I am the Lakers I choose Ariza over Odom.

Greatest Coach Ever?

With the Lakers win coach Phil Jackson passed Red Auerbach for most titles won by a head coach with 10. Jackson aka the "Zen Master" won 6 titles in the 1990s with Michael Jordan and the Bulls then came to LA and won 4.

Orlando coach Stan Van Gundy says Jackson is the greatest coach in NBA history. Van Gundy called Jackson's 10 titles an "incomprehensible" achievement, adding: "The guy wins all the time."

As much as I hate Van Gundy you have to agree with him as Jackson is now the undisputed best NBA coach of all-time. The question now becomes is he the greatest coach in professional sports history? That's something I wont get into but has been talked about since the win.

The Magic is Gone

The 2009 NBA season was the best season in the history of the Orlando Magic franchise. The Magic won more games this season than it ever had (59) and had to beat 2 sixty win teams (Celtics and Cavs) to get to the NBA Finals. The craziest part was they did that without their all-star pointguard as Jameer Nelson was forced to sit due to a serious shoulder injury. He played during the NBA Finals but was a non-factor.

The Magic are still a young team and have the pieces to get back to the Finals next year. Howard, Nelson, Rashard Lewis, and Courtney Lee are all coming back and provide the foundation for a solid core.

Team leader Hedo Turkoglu will likely opt out of his contract and test free agency which will hurt the team but provide some cap room to manouver. Although the Magic will have to contend with the Cavs and Celtics again next year they very well could get a second kick at the can if they can stay healthy and get some more depth.

Lots of Luck

Many people are saying that the Lakers didn't win the title on talent alone but instead won it because of a ridiculous amount of good luck. Haters point to:

- Yao Ming fracturing his foot in the 2nd round
- Kevin Garnett being hurt which killed the Celtics
- LeBron's supporting cast failing allowing the Magic to get to the Finals
- The Utah Jazz releasing Derek Fisher and allowing him to sign with LA due to family issues with his daughter
- The Grizzlies GM Chris Wallace basically giving them Pau Gasol for nothing

When all put together like that I can see how some people could argue the Lakers got lucky however the fact remains that they won. All of those factors are out of the Lakers hands so all they had to do was show up and win which was exactly what they did.

The series itself brought some drama and some controversy but most importantly it was a chance to watch one of the 15 greatest players of all-time, Kobe Bryant, do his thing. Players like Bryant come around so rarely that it is important to take advantage of the times when they are here. Maybe next year the Lakers could repeat or maybe Dwight Howard improves his game and leads the Magic to a title, who knows?

40 games in 40 nights is over and now Stan Van Gundy can go back to his full-time job of directing, producing, and starring in low bidget porn.

Random Youtube Video


Anonymous said...

Kobe is the best...


Anonymous said...

for a rapist....

Anonymous said...

well shit, didn't see what you said at the bottom before I said that.