The Marlins have a lower team salary than some individual players’ salaries in the league, however, these young guys are doing the unthinkable. They’re in first place in the division, and have now won 6 in a row. On two occasions I have been burned as a fan of the Florida Marlins. The fire sale in 96 was within days of the first championship. That hurt really bad. Then after a few years, this team puts together another great run, wins another championship, and one after another pieces of that championship are traded away for young and cheap talent. Here we are again, in first place with some decent talent. They just signed Ramirez to 6 years 70 million. I am sure that he won’t be a Marlin much longer, but maybe we can find some way to squeeze out a championship.
As for the NBA, the Celtics have yet to win a single road game. Can they win a championship without winning on the road? I don’t think so.
I admit, I would love to see a return of the greatest NBA rivalry ever with the Celtics taking it to the Lakers, but the Lakers are now tied 2-2 with the Jazz out west, and the Celts can’t win on the road.
The Pistons have shown an ability to win without Billups and that really is a good sign if you are a Piston’s fan. If they get rolling, they can challenge in the east. With the help of some bad calls and a bit of choking from Orlando, they squeaked out a 90-89 win on the road to go up 3-1.
The Spurs are back on track with a solid win against the Hornets. The series stands 2-2, but the Spurs have to win one in New Orleans to take the series. It’s a tall order, but I have faith in Duncan, Manu, and TP.
- Round 1 is in the books. All the favorites have advanced. I don’t know when the last time that has happened, but I will have to research it.
- Round two is going to be excellent. All the match ups are exciting. I am particularly interested in the east with Detroit playing Orlando and Celtics against the Cavs.
- The Cavs and the Celtics each won their regular season home games. The season record is 2-2.
- The Lakers beat Utah Jazz and have yet to lose a game in the playoffs. Victor is ecstatic.
- The Celtics avoided the biggest choke in NBA history beating the Hawks in game 7 to advance to round two. Essentially, the Celtics have to win the championship this season or it would be monumentally disappointing to the city of Boston. First the Patriots put together the most dominating regular season in NFL history and lose the championship. Now you have the Celtics with the third best record in NBA history. They have to win the title or this will only be a smidge less disappointing than the choke job the Patriots came up with this year. Could Boston handle the embarrassment for a second time in the same year?
- KG looked like a TE laying a blindside block on a corner trying to defend the double reverse. I forget who he put the pick on, but he laid his shoulder into it and leveled the poor guy.
- The defending champion San Antonio Spurs are down 1-0 against the Hornets. ESPN speculates that if SA loses game 2, it’s over! I don’t if I would take it that far, but certainly SA does not want to lose game 2!
Yesterday, it was the Cleveland Cavs over the Wizards in the east now up 3-1, the Suns avoided the sweep moving to a 3-1 deficit by blowing out the Spurs, New Orleans pushed forward to a 3-1 lead winning against Dallas, and with the win against the Sixers Detroit ties the series 2-2 and avoided going down 3-1 in a series they should not be struggling with. In the other series, Orlando is up 3-1 against Toronto, the Lakers might be ready to sweep the Nuggets up 3-0, Boston is up 2-1 against Atlanta, and the Jazz hold a 3-1 advantage over Houston.
If you go by historical statistics, the Lakers and the Spurs are locks to move on. No team has ever come back from 3-0 to win an NBA series (0 for 81 attempts all time), and only 3 teams have come back to tie. Only 8 teams in history have come back from a 3-1 deficit to win a series with the Phoenix Suns being the last team to do so in 2006 against the Lakers.
What does this mean? Nothing really. Records are meant to be broken. It would be great to see some lowly team like the Hawks beat the Celtics, or the Nuggets to become the first team in NBA history to come back from an 0-3 deficit (They would become only the fourth 8 seed in NBA history to beat a 1 seed, if they can get past that never-before-done comeback from 0-3). These series are not over until that 4th game is won. Until then, history is only history. Papers and stats do not win games. No team is safe or eliminated until the series is over. But the reason the 0-3 comeback has never happened, the 1-3 comeback rarely happens, and the 8 seed almost never beats the 1 seed is because the teams going up 3-0 and 3-1 are obviously the better team. The 1 seed is usually light years ahead of the 8. That’s what is so surprising about the east this year. The 1 seeded Celts and 2 seeded Pistons are so much stronger than the rest of the east that they should be cruising. Instead, the Celts have dropped one of the first 3 games of the series to a mediocre at best Atlanta team and the Pistons with the second best record in the NBA were down 1-2 against a team with a losing record. They even had to struggle just to tie the series at two a piece.
In the long run, I fully expect the Lakers, Hornets, Jazz, and Spurs to advance in the West. The Spurs might struggle a little to put away a tough Suns team. I also expect the Cavs, Pistons, Celtics, and Magic to advance in the east setting up some really cool matchups.