Just a quick collection of thoughts from around the interwebs.
The playoffs have been mediocre, the officiating has been just as bad, and we won't even talk about one, particular NBA announcer. The NBA doesn't need saving, but last night, the Celtics helped us avoid the worst case scenario.
Rajon Rondo(notes) had come for the Los Angeles Lakers with those long arms and longer odds, twisting and contorting his body like some kind of elastic man. Sometimes, it’s like you never see him coming, this slight, sullen point guard with a distant disposition. Eventually, all those sweet shots out of Ray Allen(notes) had dried up, all the beautiful people had come alive within the Staples Center and the Boston Celtics stared straight into the abyss.
Don't make this all about Los Angeles' miscues, because Boston played a tough, smart game. Just about every issue from Game 1 was worked on — the team took care of the offensive glass, it picked up some offensive rebounds of its own, it worked in some good offensive spacing of its own while doing what it could to wreck Los Angeles' spacing — and the result was an almost comfortable win.
After Pau Gasol committed a hard foul on Kendrick Perkins with 1:12 remaining in Game 2 and the Celtics leading, 97-90, Pierce, as he helped his teammate off the floor along the baseline near the hoop was heard on video replays yelling, "We ain't coming back to LA!"
Getting inside the head of Ron Artest is insanely difficult, but I sincerely wish I could have a stream-of-consciousness running commentary from Ron when I watch the following play. I suppose someone could just ask him, and the typically filterless Artest would probably guide us all through the process step-by-step, from how bringing the ball up the court reminded him of how it feels to be a star, to how his traced path on the court is a scale reenactment of the British Troops’ northbound march during the American Revolution, to how this sequence never once failed in Queensbridge. If I could just live in Ron’s head for one day…oh, the places we’d go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored! And games to be won! Oh, and did I mention critical late-game possessions to squander?
And the more you read about the guy, the interest increases. This portrait of a bright, workaholic teacher and taskmaster is hard to not be impressed by. The numbers of defenses he's helmed are consistently near the top of the league. His colleagues and pupils alike have provided glowing remarks of his candidacy over the past week, which resonates more than what Vinny Del Negro had coming in, which was basically a selling job that duped Bulls management.