Wham!! Bam!! PAO!!

I caught the Lakers vs. Boston game this morning, and if you wonder why you didn’t know about that and still be reading this blog, shame on you. Here’s the RSS feed for the ‘Next 20 Basketball Events’ category, the feed for the site as a whole (which includes everything, including our much sought afterPBA notes), and instructions for Google Reader to get you going. It’s 2009. Wisen up already.

So anyway, this post is about insight into the just concluded game, Pao Gasol, and my argument that Pao Gasol is not ‘soft’, in that order. So here goes:

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Why Boston Won; The Lakers Make Me Believe

At some 3 mins left in the game, KG executed a Dream Shake, sinking the ball for crucial points. Even more crucial was Paul Pierce‘s scintillating 41 point performance, negating LeBron James’ 45 and finally, FINALLY reminding us why he is called ‘The Truth’. I’ve been waiting, hoping, demanding even, that Pierce bring 40+. It seemed to me the only piece missing that kept Boston from steamrolling their opponents the way we all thought they should, and today’s performance was a long time coming.

But since we’re on the subject of the Truth, let’s be honest here. The picture included is the real reason why Boston won.

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Spurs – Hornets use Strategy; LA – Utah Is Streaky; and More (gasp) Predictions

Game 3 LA – Utah Notes:
Boozer finally brought game but even so seems far from the dominating PF we know him to be. I’ve been waiting for flashes of that brilliant hop skip move and head and shoulder fakes for either a teardrop semi hook or a power jam, but today we had fadeaways(?!) and 8 foot (well guarded) jumpers. Deron on the other hand was his usual brilliant self, but again not really the Playoff level player I’d like to see, and why does he keep wanting to dunk so much?

On the other side, Kobe needs help but it is not forthcoming with Radmanovic missing open 3s and Walton fumbling the ball away after a clear possession on a jumpball against Williams and Gasol in the dying minutes. Odom seems to be playing well but must assert himself further if he’s going to make a difference.

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Your NBA 2007-08 MVP

Truth is, it’s boring to write about Kobe becoming MVP. I mean, first of all, there was very little doubt. Even our own MVP polls show a whopping 50% for him, with LBJ a far second at 18%. In fact, it’s even more interesting to write about why Chris Paul should be second and not LeBron. A topic like that has angles and criss crossing opinions that make a writer’s job far easier.

Second of all, he’s just too good. Almost machine – like good. Unlike other MVPs of their time that seem to conjure magic tricks on the court (ie. MJ, Nash, Magic Johnson, etc.), Kobe’s consistency and robot like devotion to the sport more than anything, in my opinion, is what makes him MVP. He is just unrelentingly, all – encompassingly, unstoppableingly, good.

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In the United States, there is a basketball league called the National Basketball Association, or NBA, where they have some very good players. Who knew right?

Anyway, the NBA is starting it’s Playoffs, which is a prelude to something called a ‘Championship’. So we’re holding a poll to figure out who BallEx readers think is going to be their best basketball player for the year, called an ‘MVP’.

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Watching Hoops Is Exciting Again

The only thing really I can say about Gasol going to LA is – hallelujah. If there’s anything I can say in my brief stint at playing Yahoo Fantasy Basketball, it’s that the lack of quality big men, even in the most popular and most monied basketball league in the world, is appalling.

Which is to say, that should a team be lucky enough to land anyone even near the quality of a Pau Gasol, let alone that team be the currently over – achieving and always popular Lakers, then by golly that’s an incredible feat in itself. I am by no means a Lakers fan (although Kobe’s recent appearance here changed my opinion of him completely), yet even I’m excited. It’s like the whole league suddenly became interesting again by just that one move. Considering the Lakers aren’t doing so badly, they might even give the Celtics a worthy challenge. And how mind – blowing is that? LA vs. Boston all over again. My God the whole idea makes me shake in my boots.

A few more notable things re the trade:

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