King of Distraction


Lebron James and his headband against fellow hair loss victim Manu Ginobili

The NBA Finals have ended following a seven-game seesaw that saw the Miami Heat come out on top and Lebron James add a few support beams to his legacy. In the dramatic final two games we saw the full-range of the game’s most iconic figure. He struggled, he pouted, he pressed. He was uncharacteristically bad in the first half of game six but after losing a head band, he regained his dominant form hitting a clutch three down the stretch en route to an overtime victory. In defiance of the more superstitious observers who speculated he may ditch the accessory forever, the headband was back for game 7. Lebron played his best game of the series, leading Miami to its second straight title, and collected another MVP trophy, headband and all. I guess every king needs his crown if only to hide a receding hairline.

I’m so glad its finally over. The NBA season seems ridiculously long, and I only started watching a month ago. I can’t blame anyone but myself for wasting so much time watching these silly series featuring the Bulls, Clippers, Nets, Pacers and Grizzlies (where do they play again? Knoxville?) as if one of these inferiors might actually shock the world and find a way to ultimately win a whole SERIES against Miami. Upsets like that never happen. There were plenty of good games, sure, but in retrospect, the thing to do would have been to set a timer and only turn the TV on for the last five minutes of each game. Jesus, if I see that Chris Paul/Cliff Paul twin commercial one more time I’m going to throw a hamburger at a baby.

What is a “good game” in basketball anyway? It could be back and forth for the first forty minutes with crisp passing, solid defense and flawless execution on both sides, but when one team pulls ahead and maintains their lead in the closing minutes, they usually get credit for having dominated and the casual viewer feels cheated. On the other hand, there are sloppy games that have huge, bipolar swings just because one or the other team goes catatonic and keeps turning the ball over and jacking up stupid shots. Suddenly, one guy starts hitting threes and all of a sudden the game is tied with twenty seconds left and it’s all about momentum and when and whether or not to intentionally foul. These, of course, are the most fun to watch, practically BECAUSE they are poorly played in the technical sense.

Good lord, I got to the point where I was planning my life around these damn games. I actually rescheduled an appointment Tuesday night at the mechanic’s. My car wouldn’t lock. I risked being robbed blind just because I wanted to see if Danny Green would come back and hit twenty 3s in game 6 and make Lebron cry or do that thing where he chews his jersey.

So finally the time of year has come when sports take a vacation as long as you aren’t super into July baseball, the WNBA, World Cup qualifiers, and oh…the rest of the Stanley Cup, (if you happen to be a Canadiaphile). How wonderful it will be to have my evenings free. I’ll finally have a chance to knock the dust off the novel I started in September and watch that Netflix disc that’s been sitting on top of the DVD player since the days when people still used Netflix to watch DVDs, or maybe I’ll pay the bills, run the vacuum, clip my toenails.

Have a good summer sports world. I’ll see you September 9.badass Philly Eagle

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