The top five stories of the 2009 NBA playoffs
In game three of the Western Conference Semi-Finals, the zebras missed an intentional foul that cost Dallas the game and sealed the series for Denver. Cuban was understandably heated, but shouldn’t have had a meltdown in front of the television cameras. His tirade included screaming at the mother of Nuggets’ forward Kenyon Martin. The renegade owner swears he yelled that Martin was a punk, while the four-man’s old lady claimed Cuban called her son a thug. Apologies (on a blog) solved nothing. And this thing got ugly …
Every week, HoopsVibe The Blog drops a list for NBA fans to weigh-in on. We call it ‘Listed’ …
It’s in the books.
Two months ago, sixteen teams dreamed of having NBA Commissioner David Stern hand them the Larry O’Brien trophy. Tonight, the Los Angeles Lakers’ championship dream has become reality after defeating the Orlando Magic in an easy five-game NBA Finals.
Contrary to what the purple-and-gold nation believes, other storylines developed this post-season. In this edition of ‘Listed’, HoopsVibe the Blog is counting down the five most memorable headlines of the 2009 playoffs. As always, read the post and get at us with thoughts in the comment box below.
Honourable Mention: Cuban versus ‘K-Mart’ coming soon to a UFC octagon near you …
It wouldn’t be the playoffs if Dallas owner Mark Cuban didn’t go ballistic and make headlines. Of course, the refs were involved. And of course, the billionaire lost his cool in an inappropriate manner.
In game three of the Western Conference Semi-Finals, the zebras missed an intentional foul that cost Dallas the game and sealed the series for Denver. Cuban was understandably heated, but shouldn’t have had a meltdown in front of the television cameras.
His tirade included screaming at the mother of Nuggets’ forward Kenyon Martin. The renegade owner swears he yelled that Martin was a punk, while the four-man’s old lady claimed Cuban called her son a thug. Apologies (on a blog) solved nothing. And this thing got ugly.
(Did Cuban get this angry after getting booted off Dancing With The Stars?)
Top Story #5: Detroit and San Antonio take a fall …
For years, the Pistons had ‘reservations’ in the Conference Finals, advancing to the last four or beyond for six straight seasons. Everything changed when Joe Dumars dealt star table-setter Chauncey Billups to Denver for Allen Iverson’s expiring contract.
The Answer fizzled and was told to take a hike. And Detroit, after struggling all season, squeaked into the playoffs and got swept by Cleveland. There is plenty of cap space and some enticing young pieces. Let the rebuilding project begin.
Meanwhile, the Spurs looked old, losing in the opening round to the Mavericks. Sure, perennial All-Star and designated game-changer Manu Ginobili was hurt, but The Alamo’s lack of athleticism and youth was obvious.
Top Story #4: Boston versus Chicago was EPIC …
Simply put, the Celtics and Bulls dropped a seven game classic for fans. There were buzzer beaters. There were overtimes –seven in total. Anyway, click the youtube icon below and relive the Eastern Conference Quarter-Finals before it becomes a fixture on ESPN Classic television.
Top Story #3: Denver emerges as a force …
Sleeping on the Nuggets proved costly. After all, George Karl’s crew has a developing superstar in Carmelo Anthony, several tough posts, and a confident second unit that logged heavy minutes.
But Billups was the straw that stirred the drink. After a slight decline in Detroit, Mr. Big Shot enjoyed a renaissance playing in his hometown of Denver and should’ve received more MVP consideration.
Top Story #2: Orlando wins the Eastern Conference …
They upset the defending champion Celtics and beat the heavily favoured Cavaliers. So has the balance of power changed in the Eastern Conference? Is the Magic a lock for the 2010 NBA Finals?
Well, Orlando peaked at the right time and enjoyed an impressive post-season. And their outside-inside game featuring Dwight Howard, Rashard Lewis, and Hedo Turkoglu is a nasty piece of business that gave Boston and Cleveland fits.
By making the NBA Finals, Disney World only established itself as one of the east’s best teams. The green-and-white likely win game seven of the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals with a healthy Kevin Garnett, while Danny Ferry will surely upgrade King James’ supporting cast this summer.
Top Story #1: The redemption of Kobe Bryant and the Lakers …
Revenge is best served cold.
In 2004, he allegedly exercised the removal of Shaquille O’Neal. In 2007, he then requested a trade, kicking off six months of TMZ-esque gossip and trade rumours. For his actions, he took more hits than one of Mike Tyson’s early sparring partner.
Tonight, Kobe Bryant is smiling. The best player of our generation has his fourth NBA Title and first playoff MVP. If all goes according to plan this off-season, there will be many more championships in La-La land.
Ladies and gentlemen, hate it or love it, Kobe and the Lakers are back on top. Better get used to it, too.
What do you think is the top story of the 2009 playoffs? Get at us in the comment box below and come back to HoopsVibe the Blog for more NBA tidbits. Photo courtesy of allanallanallan’s on-line portfolio.