Remind me not to proclaim any more series as “over.” There is just no upside. If Cleveland DID what they were supposed to and beat the injured Raptors, then who cares, right? Of COURSE they won, real ‘bold’ prediction there buddy! And of the less-fun flip side – they do what they did LAST night and one (in this case, me) is left looking really, really foolish.
Alas, that is where we stand after the Raptors have inexplicably tied this series after another miserable effort from Kevin Love and a trio of heroic efforts from Kyle Lowry, DeMarr DeRozan and “who needs Valencunias” Bismack Biyombo. The Raptors withstood a fierce three-point barrage in the fourth quarter from Channing Frye, withstood a blistering third quarter from Kyrie, and outlasted the Cavaliers to even this series at two.
And gut feel – I STILL think there is no way Toronto wins this series (dammit, I did it again…)
On to more pressing matters – can Golden State get back in their series (a sentence no one anticipated typing two months ago…) and even things at two games apiece tonight? If NOT, they face a devastating 3-1 hole and the very real possibility that the greatest season in NBA history becomes quickly all for naught, a footnote on the oddities of the record book, and for some, a punchline like the 18-1 Patriots…
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Today’s Free Pick:
Golden State Warriors -1.5 at Oklahoma City Thunder
I was all in on the Spurs at the expense of the Thunder, but pivoted after watching the evidence on the television screen in time to have a profitable Western Conference Semifinals. The same opportunity to tuck tail and turn is clearly available tonight. After all, you can get the Thunder at home AND points and after watching the way they blistered, clowned, punked, dominated, and danced all over the Warriors two nights ago, it seems like the proverbial offer you can’t refuse.
But I am going to go against the grain and do just that. Refuse. I’m sticking by the Warriors though it is admittedly VERY tough to do right now.
Here’s a few fun gems for perspective on the wackiness of NBA series: In 1996, the mighty Bulls lost Game Four to the Sonics 106-87. They scored only 78 points in a subsequent Game Five loss. The 1992 Bulls were just 12-7 in their final three playoff rounds, including a seven game semifinal against the Knicks where they lost Game One at home and Game Six by 14. And perhaps the best anecdotal evidence that the Warriors are not done yet, LeBron’s Heat lost 113-77 in Game Three of the 2013 NBA Finals – a series they needed seven games to win but DID win (and also seven games to beat the Pacers in the East after losing Game Six in Indy in blowout fashion).
The point is – if you want to jump ship to OKC, I get it. There is plenty of visual evidence to support it leaping out of the television set. But if you want to remain patient along with me, stand by the greatest regular season team in the history of the NBA for one more valiant stand, there is plenty of history to say we are not crazy.
So Steph, Klay, Draymond and company, I’m sticking with the Warriors. So please regress back to your shooting means tonight and keep me from looking foolish…