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NBA finals, Lakers Celtics Game 7: Boston closed their eyes and it slipped away

Jun 18, 2010, 1:51 AM EDT

Garnett_sad.jpgIt’s a very bitter taste for a team that remembers the sweet taste of champagne.

It’s made worse by knowing that they had a 13-point lead in the third quarter. Worse by knowing that this team may never be together in this form again. Worse by knowing that Ray Allen went 3 for 14 in what likely will be his final game in a Celtics uniform.

Worse because for the first time this playoffs, Boston actually looked old.

“Well, there was a lot of crying in our locker room, a lot of people who care…” Doc Rivers said after an 83-79 loss at a game played right at the Celtics pace. “I just can’t stress enough how crazy close this team was, you know, and that would be the word, crazy close. They’re the type of group that they could scream at each other but no one picks on any of them. That’s a special group.”

They played special at the start. Boston came out playing physically on defense, taking away the Lakers primary options, forcing the Lakers to shoot 22 percent in the first quarter. Kobe Bryant wanted desperately to put his imprint on the game and the Celtics had a game plan to take the ball out of his hands. Boston trapped him, they pushed him off his spots, they gave him no space and he shot 1 for 7 in the first quarter. And Boston was up 9 after one.

That defensive effort continued through the third quarter, and the fans Staples were on edge. It wasn’t pretty, and the Celtics were fine with that. The Lakers would make a mini-run and the Celtics would make a couple stops, a couple baskets and re-establish themselves. Boston was the better team. They were getting some transition points and they were up 13.

But the size of the Lakers kept wearing on a Boston team that missed Kendrick Perkins.

“I thought the lack of size at the end of the of the day was the difference in the game,” Rivers said. “I thought a couple things hurt us – when Rasheed started getting cramps, that was killer for us because they attacked out lack of size after that, and then it made me, forced me to extend Kevin (Garnett’s) minutes, which I know is not good.”

Pau Gasol, “befuddled” by Rasheed Wallace in the first half (to use Phil Jackson’s term), started to come to life. The Lakers were making their big run. Boston could no longer run its offense through the post because the Celtics big men were too tired to be effective, Rivers said.

So when Boston needed points, they turned to Allen. And he missed. The guy that won them Game 2 with his shooting was 3 of 14 on the night, 2 of 5 in the fourth quarter. Missing at the rim and from three.

It may well be Allen’s last game as a Celtic (although he said he wants to be back), he is an unrestricted free agent this summer and other teams are likely to pay more than a Boston team that needs to start getting younger. It was an ugly way to go out, looking old.

“It’s hard to see it end this way,” Allen said.

It wasn’t just Allen, either.

“You know, it’s the fist time all year that you can actually say at the end of the day we were old because at the end of the game because we didn’t have enough bodies,” Rivers said, referring to Perkins. “I thought it hurt us.”

It hurt them a lot. To the point of tears.

105 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. Hackpiper - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:02 AM

    Oh come on, Lakerfan….15 YEARS??
    LOL!
    Congratulations on the title! See you NEXT YEAR! (Somehow!)

  2. Foul Dwimmerlaik - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:03 AM

    Hazzah to My Phil. Now that the Lakers have won, I can begin to have my loving physical relationship with the man I adore. That, indeed, is the true prize.
    To those doo doo heads and pooper pants who doubted the Lakers, you have been schooled!
    Victory belongs to me, King of the Hobbits!
    I now lmfao at all of you who doubted and depart.
    LMFAO!

  3. nunyabizness - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:17 AM

    PLEASE. What are you talking about?
    KOBE IS ONE OF THE (if not THEE MOST) ARROGANT player to EVER play in the NBA. He thinks he’s like Jordan, except he’s NOT.
    Plus, let’s be honest, the Lakers would NOT have even made it to the playoffs had it not been for Kobe and his arrogance.
    AND, for the record, I am NOT a Celtics fan!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Joanne - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:19 AM

    The NBA is so FIXED, LA could not win, without the refs letting them live at the line! It is sickening to watch! So unfair, it is a joke! They don’t have to play the game next year, just GIVE it to LA for a threepeat! Not worth watching when the ending is clear at the beginning of the year!

  5. pjmjfan - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:23 AM

    All this chatter about rapists & thugs is stupid. Unfortunately, few pro teams have rosters full of upstanding, moral, law-abiding ctizens, and these two teams are certainaly no exception. Both teams have renowned floppers, and both are loaded with chronic ref-whiners. Nonetheless, they both earned their places in the Finals, both deserved to win, but ultimately the Lakers were able to edge out Boston. Yes, had Perkins been healthy, the game would’ve been different, but injuries are part of the game. Personally, I liked the physicality of game 7. It was nice to see the refs let them wrestle…ahem….I mean, play. Congrats to the Lakers, the awesome city of LA, and all of SoCal! Regarding the Celtics…..Having been a Bulls fan for decades, I feel for you Boston fans as a team rebuild is seemingly inevitable.

  6. BallBuster - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:25 AM

    The better team lost… what a loser’s comment! How classless can you get. I am not a Lakers fan in the least, but it’s laughable to hear that. Sorry, but the Lakers bested the “better” team. WHo cares about 3 quarters of a few games of the series. Wake up… it’s who’s ahead after 4 quarters for 4 games. Easy math.
    And yes they are jerks. Wallace was an idiot in a Pistons uniform and remains one in a Celtics one too. Garnett was one in a T-wolves too. And Davis is a dirty player, ask Shaq about that too. Celtics are the losers here. Open and shut case.

  7. BallBuster - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:27 AM

    The better team lost… what a loser’s comment! How classless can you get. I am not a Lakers fan in the least, but it’s laughable to hear that. Sorry, but the Lakers bested the “better” team. Who cares about 3 quarters or a few games of the series. Wake up… it’s who’s ahead after 4 quarters for 4 games. Easy math.
    And yes they are jerks. Wallace was an idiot in a Pistons uniform and remains one in a Celtics one too. Garnett was one in a T-wolves too. And Davis is a dirty player, ask Shaq about that too. Celtics are the losers here. Open and shut case.

  8. roleston - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:28 AM

    The only thing worse than watching the lakers win would have been watching the celtics win. Thank goodness the celtics lost, they have no likability to their team. Peirce, Garnett, Rondo, Allen, I would literally pay to watch a tv chanel of just them crying and soaking in that they just lost. hahah losers. I hate the lakers but man do I hate the celtics more.

  9. Foul Dwimmerlaik - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:31 AM

    My Lakers and My Phil (the man with whom I shall share intimate physical love) have vanquished the invading foe from the east. Hazzah! Hazzah! Let the celebratorious escapades begin!
    To those who would not believe, I lmfao at you.
    LMFAO!

  10. Mark G. - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:39 AM

    Hey Joe………….wake up…………The BEST team ALWAYS wins a seven game series………..wah wah…………GO LAKERS!!!!!!!! The fossils, I mean Celtics are now extinct!!!!!!!!!

  11. jazk - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:42 AM

    As if game one, three and six never happened. The better team doesn’t get shredded to pieces and posting the second worst scoring performance in NBA history as Boston did in game six, better team doesn’t lose first game at home after seizing home court in game two. Better team wins the championship, ask Doc Rivers.

  12. 8foldpath - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:43 AM

    Such a sore loser. Artest showed up when he had to. Kobe is a facilitator. He has been all season. If he is being triple teamed then he is a threat. The Celtics know that. None of the Celtics at any given time were being triple teamed. Only double teamed. Kobe deserves the finals MVP as well as the season MVP. The Celtics will rebuild and may come back in a few years but for now the Lakers are on top. Deal with it.

  13. Anonymous - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:51 AM

    Nicely said jazk……….Boston gave it a run, but they’re too old and now they’re finished for years to come. The Lakers will THREE -PEAT. Hey Joe S………fitting that the Celtics color is green, because you’re GREEN WITH ENVY!!!!!!!!!

  14. Mark G. - Jun 18, 2010 at 10:58 AM

    Well, I’m a Yankees and Lakers fan……………the whole city of Boston can watch the 2 million people in downtown LA live from their bar stools. Have another beer Bostonians……………GO YANKEES………..GO LAKERS!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. pjmjfan - Jun 18, 2010 at 11:11 AM

    ha….dude, that was cheezy…..funny, but definitely cheezy. LMAO! ….green with envy….too funny man.

  16. AlexSand - Jun 18, 2010 at 11:31 AM

    I’m very happy that Boston lost. I think they are so arrogant. Pierce said they were not going back to LA. Davis guaranteed that they would win last night. Wallace guaranteed that they would go 73-9 in the regular season. Well those 3 guys are IDIOTS. I’m glad Robinson and Davis did not celebrate the way they did in game 5. It really feels good. The best part is that they will have to wait another 20 years to get a championship if they are lucky!

  17. Foul Dwimmerlaik - Jun 18, 2010 at 11:33 AM

    I agree and I laugh alongside you. In a spectacle of exuberance we shall laugh at the remark infused with cheesy wittiness.
    As a matter of fact, I may just lmfao at this time.
    LMFAO!

  18. Jodeman - Jun 18, 2010 at 11:34 AM

    What do you expect? When there were more players on all the teams from the inner city than there were from everywhere else, you knew they were going to bring that inner city attitude and style with them. It will never change. So remember the past fondly and explain to your kids how it used to have some semblance of a gentlemans game. Because now, like football,it is a thuggish, inner city game.
    Oh and for all of you who think I am being biased or somewhat racist, you know that this is the truth so shut it.

  19. LOSERINDAPAINT - Jun 18, 2010 at 11:56 AM

    better team…step away from the computer and go back to your crack pipe, the better team/players were the lakers why…because even thier offense was off…and it wasnt always the feltsics d, lakers were just not hitting, and take note the lakers d still smothered them more so in the 4th, but for you to say thru 5 of the 6 games the celts were the better team, gm 1 the lakers bitch slapped em back to reality, gm 2 it was a 2 man show ray allen and the refs, gm again lakers outplayed out hustled and generally outted the celts, gm 4 hey that was all about the celts tehy played harder and deserved the win, game 5 cmon the celts were lucky to win that game with the refs help of course, gm 6 again a lakers bitch slap gm 7 lakers played thier worst game of the series and still beat your celtics, so get real get a life and pay attantion of the 7 game series the celtics had one solid game the rest were gifts from the refs, oh and btw just a side note even the refs couldnmt save teh celts in game 6 or 7…..congrats to the lakers the better players and THE BEST TEAM IN THE NBA

  20. Mark G. - Jun 18, 2010 at 12:13 PM

    I’d like to sit down a have a celebratory beer with you loserindapaint. Hey Joe S…………who hoisted the trophy last night dude? THE BEST TEAM and THE NBA WORLD C
    CHAMPIONS………….LA LAKERS! Hey Joe S……….wanna join us and watch the parade?

  21. pjmjfan - Jun 18, 2010 at 12:15 PM

    It is the truth, but you make it sound wrong. I am a white-collar professional who is quite the gentleman, but, when I’m playing ball with the fellas, I often exhibit the same behavior you would likely describe as “inner city attitude”. However, my upbringing was far from inner city. This perception that “gentlemen” celebrate more appropriately than “inner city” IS mild racism, and you ARE being bias. Stop being so shallow and full of yourself. Be happy for these inner city kids with the willpower and perserverance to overcome the odds highly stacked against them. Like some of us true gentlemen, you need to stop judging over something you know little, if anything about. You’re the one needing to shut up.

  22. WOWIMSHOCKED - Jun 18, 2010 at 12:18 PM

    FUNNY HOW EVERYONE KEEPS CALLING KOBE A RAPIST…UHM HES AN ADULTERER, AS FOR THE RAPE YOUR MAKING IT OUT LIKE THE GIRL WAS INNOCENT, AFTER GETTING IN KOBES PANTS SHE GOES TO A PARTY AND BRAGS ABOUT IT THEN AFTER ALMOST 24 HOURS PASS SHE CLAIMS SHE WAS RAPED…AND IN THE LAB THEY FIND 3 DIFFERENT SEMEN SAMPLES ON HER PANTIES (NONE OF WHICH WERE KOBES) SO BEFORE ANYONE KEEPS GOING ON ABOUT THE RAPE CHARGE GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT OR SHUT THE HELL UP ALREADY….I DONT CARE WHO WON BASKETBALL IS A SPORT LIKE ANY OTHER, CONGRATS TO BOTH TEAMS FOR AN ENJOYABLE SERIES

  23. Mark G. - Jun 18, 2010 at 12:23 PM

    Another well-said posting. Anybody heard from Joe S. lately? Or is he still watching the re-runs from the 1984 series?

  24. Mark G. - Jun 18, 2010 at 12:51 PM

    Awww Joe S……….ya make an a** out of yourself, you get obliterated by even Non-Laker fans, and you pick up your marbles and go home? Where did ya go? It was just getting fun.

  25. Whatevahfugitaboutit - Jun 18, 2010 at 1:01 PM

    Boys will be boys, and men will be men. If you don’t like it, tune in to the WNBA. It was a great series, with lots of ebb and flow, lot’s of drama,(including queens) and entertainment. What else would you expect from this rivalry? I’ll bet the TV ratings smashed any previous record. Would have loved to be there in person, but I’m not in a spot where I can afford to fly back and forth, or willing to directly fund millionaires playing a game. Professional sports are what they are. Entertainment, and this was by far the most entertaining series I’ve seen in a while. Both teams deserve kudos for playing their hearts out. As far as your comments Joanne, my name says it all… See ya next year!

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