I harbor no illusions that Orlando can win 4 straight. All Boston really needs to do is to win one, just one. They can win one by virtue of playing well, or by Orlando playing badly, or by chance, by any way possible, and it’d still be a win that’d take them to the Finals.
Any way you look at it, the chances that Orlando can consistently play well while Boston plays as poorly as it did today (which isn’t even that poorly, just below their usual standards), isn’t very high.
But today, Orlando played well enough to make the game interesting, so I’m going to concentrate on looking at just this game, and not the series.
And the most interesting thing I thought worth mentioning was Dwight Howard‘s expressions, or rather the lack of it.
See, most of the time I like to rip this guy for reacting too much. I think it’s because I don’t like players who jaw too much to begin with. I love Rasheed Wallace‘s game for example, but I hate it when he starts snapping at the refs. It just makes me, a person who watches tons of basketball and who should know better, to scream at the TV to tell him to shut up.
And I don’t believe that he can’t help it. OF COURSE YOU CAN HELP IT. I mean all you have to do, when you feel your temper rise and your mouth start to want to talk garbage, is to turn around and run the other way. If you can teach yourself to shoot jumpshots with accuracy, you can learn how to control your temper. If you have the discipline to run windsprints ten times a day every day for weeks, you can discipline yourself to shut up. If you can force yourself to wake up at dawn, run ten miles, work out at the gym then shoot 100 shots everyday, you can keep your mouth shut when you feel you’ve gotten a bad call. I just don’t believe it when people say they can’t. It doesn’t make sense.
Today however, I could not avoid taking notice how Howard kept his cool as things got physical. And I can’t help thinking that’s the main reason for this.
Dwight came up BIG TIME today, the way we always expected him to turn up. 32 pts., 16 rebs., 4 blocks in 43 minutes, making up for Carter‘s poor showing (3pts.) and even Gortat‘s, Pietrus and Williams collective 0 points.
But like I said, it doesn’t take much for Boston to win another one.
Especially after Orlando’s tentative play, manifesting itself in silly turnovers and telling hesitation in the dying minutes of the fourth.
All Boston needs to do now is do themselves a favor by keeping it together long enough to finish Orlando off, then hope the Suns – Lakers series goes farther so as to wear down whoever they’re going to meet in the Finals. They’ve got the lead now, and are ahead by a mile. It’s imperative they use their hometown advantage in Game 5 to beat Orlando, and take advantage of their near – sweep to take a rest before the Finals.