Thursday, June 22, 2006

Parting Thoughts on the 2006 NBA Finals

I will keep this short because when it's over, it's over. We're left with plenty of empty beer cans and not many words. And yet we start getting incoherent as if Mr. and Mrs. Profound are waiting to show up.

Slowly, the queer feeling of a sense of emptiness continues to engulf our passion, our rooting for the team we thought we care so much about.

Then we are sipping coffee with our friend(s) in one corner of Starbucks, our eyes searching, and just like that the flash is on.

That was one heck of a post-season.

We scream inside. And that's it — done and over with. See you next year.

So, what else to say? Well, just few more bits from here and there.

Before any series when I turn on my crystal ball, I don't stay objective. There is hardly any point to stay neutral and making an objective assessment. It takes away all the energy for a sports fan.

In principle it is possible. Then again Ann Coulter behaving with an acceptable degree of civility is a possibility too.

The teams playing for the holy grail of basketball may or may not be your teams, and most likely they are not. The probability that a randomly picked NBA or basketball fan is a legit one (to qualify as a legit fan he/she must be in some way genuinely connected to a team in the finals) is somewhere around one in 10 million or so (okay, that's an educated guess). It's a lot easier to find a bar date on a Friday night.

The funny part is our loyalty is not entirely to a team, whether or not they are in the finals. It is, for a conceivable portion, to the game we love. As the series progresses, the orphan fans, without a team to cheer for, soon find themselves coming out of the zone of indifference and swearing one way or the other.

That's the truth in the game. It brings out the Mark Cuban in you.

Since not everyday I get a chance to gloat, I might as well remind you that I picked Heat in six. And this was my reason:

Make no mistake, Wade is not going to let this slip away and there's just enough Diesel left in Shaq's tank to win 4 games.
I was wrong, in part. Without Udonis Haslem, Gary Payton, James Posey, and Antoine Walker (the unsung quartet), there wouldn't be any champagne flowing in Miami. No accolades please. Their contributions are beyond that.

The Dallas fans didn't see this coming. They believed they had a better team. Now the suffering. Hard to reconcile. Harder to make it through.

Now pause for a moment. In every season, there is a best team and a championship team. Sometimes the best team wins the championship and sometimes it does not.

The best team is only better than the rest.

The championship team sweats that extra drop to get it done. A talented group who refuse to die till they are dead.

Congratulations to the Miami Heat, the 2006 NBA Champions (sorry I cannot bring myself to say world champions - the memories are still fresh)

Congratulations to the Dallas Mavericks, for being there. Sorry, Mark. You tried.

And did I say I will keep this short?

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