Closing the book and moving on.
- So, the big question heading into the next series is "will there be any carryover from the first round?" The short answer is not much. The teams start 0-0 and the Celtics have the home court advantage. The Cavs have a couple more days of rest, but not so much that it would matter. If anything, the Celtics might have learned some valuable lessons about the intensity of the playoffs and never letting up on an opponent. The first round may have been a needed "wake up call" for the Celtics. Or maybe they just didn't play well. Regardless, none of that really matters now.
- The King is in town and we're about to be super-saturated with all things LeBron James. We are all witnesses to the lawyer drinking Vitamin Water (or was it PowerAde? Or Sprite? I can't keep up) and feeding his son food that his personal chef is cooking in the background. Oh yeah, and you might have noticed that he can play a little too. For instance, the triple double he dropped on the Wizards in their clinching game 6. (Imagine that, putting a team away in less than 7 games.) Or perhaps you might remember him putting the Cavs on his back and carrying them kicking and screaming all the way to the Finals last year. Or perhaps you might have noticed that the boys in stripped shirts get a tad bit whistley when he has the ball and a defender invades his personal space. Yup, we're going to see a lot of Mr. James in the coming weeks.
- And what of the rest of the Cavaliers? Well, you can start with the ex-Celtics. Wally Szczerbiak (had to look up the spelling on that one, it has been a while since I typed it - update: I still spelled it wrong - I think it is fixed now - if it isn't, I give up.) showed a pulse in the first round, nailing 6 three pointers for 26 points in the game 6 win. Then again, he still only averaged 10.8 points a game that series, so take it with a grain of salt. Delonte West hit a game winning three pointer, but again his points per game on the series were just 10.2. Big Z has to be accounted for on the block, but he's the polar opposite of the young athletic forwards that gave the Celtics so much trouble in the first round. Boobie Gibson runs hot and cold. Joe Smith and Anderson Varejao hustle and play hard. Ben Wallace manages to contribute once in a while, despite the very large fork stuck in his back. I'm sure we'll get into all these players more in the coming days, but frankly, not a one of them scares me at all.
Mini prediction: Celtics in 6