There are three game sixes tonight, and they’re all set to end their respective series, so let’s take them one at a time, in order of each scheduled occurrence, as well as Friday’s contest for good measure.
This is not how the Bulls wished their second season would go, nor is it the way I thought it would go either. (I had them in the bloody NBA Finals in my preseason prognostication, and had them sweeping the Sixers, too; can’t win them all, can you?)
It’ll be interesting to see how Philly does against Boston in Round Two, because from now on, the 76ers are on borrowed time—and they’ll revel in every minute of it.
Score of tonight’s contest should be something like: 88-72. You didn’t think Philly wanted to win this anywhere but at home did you?
During the closing moments of Game Five of this series, I saw something in the expression of Doc Rivers I’d seen before when the Celtics were facing the Hawks in a losing effort.
The game was on 4/20 of all days, and it marked the last time Boston would face Atlanta before they were supposedly to meet in the playoffs. The Celtics sat KG, Pierce, Rondo and Ray Allen, but Doc appeared content to just laugh that they even had a shot to win a game in which they were shorthanded, and Joe Johnson netted 30 pts in ATL.
In Game Five Al Horford was running amok, and it was a game within a game: A game of streaks—expect none of that in tonight’s game, for there’s no crowd to rile the Hawks up, or to help the team quell a Boston run, and now they’ve had time to see that Horford is back with a vengeance.
Paul Pierce has been leading the way for Boston in scoring, and when he goes north of 20 pts, the Celtics have won. (Take note of that when watching.) Plus, Rondo’s averaging almost 13 helpers a game in this series, and he’s bound to be above average at home.
That look on Doc’s face amidst the final minute of Game Five says it all, like he’s thinking, “We’ll get them—just not tonight”; good point Mr. Rivers.
Score: 96-88. Boston then will face Philly, and the Celtics could do that in…stay tuned
So the Lakers bucked the trend of the night—again!—the trend being that every home team on 5/6 won, but the Lake Show won on the road, and on 5/8 the same thing happened, yet the Lakers let the Nuggets win at Staples—oops.
Add to that, the likelihood of hundreds of Laker fans screaming, “On how many alley-oops are Andre Miller and JaVale McGee going to connect?!? Just in case you forgot what that looked like Laker fan…
Worry not fans of LAL, because Game Five had more abnormalities than just Miller and McGee being the leading scorers for Denver, for only three Lakers were in double figures, those being Kobe with his monstrous 43 (he’s averaging more than 30 a game in this series, too), Bynum with 16&11 and Matty Barnes with 11 as a reserve.
The Lake Show will come back to Los Angeles not to play a seventh game, but they’ll arrive with the Thunder on their minds—something that’ll take up much of the team’s valuable time until tipoff of Round Two.
Translation: 101-84—and Kobe has…drum roll please…37
Friday Night Fun—MEM/LAC (ESPN)
Flip a coin, I don’t know. But mark this: A Game Seven means doom for the Clips, so it’s now or never regarding the other team in LA, but this series has become the most competitive one in Round One, so flip that coin and turn on the tube; you might even get it right; who knows?
Score: 89-87 on a trey in the last twenty seconds of regulation…heads Grizzlies…tails Clippers…flip…heads
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