Yes, The NBA Still Matters

By Dave DeNatale

The NBA playoffs have been going on for the past three weeks, and frankly I’ve not paid too much attention.

Part of the reason has been because of the Indians early success.  I’m buying into Manny Acta and his “Wahoo Baseball” as this year’s edition of the Tribe is so much fun to watch.  Whether or not they can carry this momentum through to the rest of the season to me is irrelevant.  They’re winning right now and that’s what matters.

But I think I’ve also been keeping away from the NBA postseason because for the first time since 2005, the Cavaliers aren’t there.

The only excitement about the Cavaliers right now is finding out where they will draft when the NBA holds its lottery next week.

And while we remember the good ol’ days of the past five years, you-know-who is having all kinds of fun with the Miami Heat.  It just doesn’t seem that anyone can beat Wade, James, Bosh and company in a seven-game series.  Not the Celtics, or the Bulls, or the Mavericks, or anyone else.

While I try to restrain myself from getting sick at the thought of “The Decision Maker” hoisting the Larry O’Brien trophy next month, one game helped restore my interest in NBA playoff basketball.

I came home after midnight on Monday to see the Memphis Grizzlies battle the Oklahoma City Thunder and couldn’t walk away from the television.

You had two young teams with emerging stars fighting into triple overtime, before Kevin Durant led Oklahoma City to the victory to even the series at two games apiece.  Former Buckeye Mike Conley hit an unbelievable three-pointer to help Memphis force overtime.  Then, Grizzlies rookie Greivis Vasquez hit a clutch three to send it to double OT.  I found myself rooting for these Memphis underdogs, yet I was also yelling at Russell Westbrook to please throw the ball to Durant instead of forcing bad shot after bad shot.

Ah-ha!  That’s why I love the NBA, and the playoffs in particular.  You never know what’s going to happen!  Not when Derrick Rose makes brilliant play after brilliant play.  Not when Zach Randolph has been reborn as a dominant force for Memphis.  And not when Rajon Rondo fights back from a dislocated elbow to inspire the Celtics to a win over Miami.

Make no mistake; I will be rooting for whoever plays the Heat from here on in.  But I also know that thanks to a couple of young stars, I am committed to the NBA again.

Follow me on Twitter @dinocleveland


1 Comment

  1. The bitterness toward the Heat is overdone, and tired. Root for the Cavs to move on, and improve with the leadership of Byron Scott. The absolute hatred against Lebron James is ludicrous as well. Michael Reghi and Kenny Roda act like they were dating him, and he cheated on them. Reghi- hold on to your hair plugs!! Yes, the Decision was stupid, and the posturing in Miami was goofy, but we live in a time where athletes are held up as role models too often.

    Bottom line- James played well for seven years, and took the team to heights it never had achieved before. His cast of supporting players should be happy to have been along for the ride, as it was a good one. I am not a James (or for the most part , an NBA fan- I prefer college basketball), but he had a right to move onto wherever he wanted to go.

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