Monday, April 18, 2011
The Agony of Defeat
Well, that one hurt. In order to be competitive in this series, the Knicks would have to steal one on the road and then handle their home court business. The Celtics seemed ready to help them out with that first step, but the Knicks let the oppurtunity get away thanks to ugly offense by everyone except Amare and great offensive execution by Boston. I can't imagine the C's playing a half of basketball at home worse than last night's first half, and yet the Knicks let Jermaine O'neal (of all people) and the rest of their vets close the gap in the second half. O'neal's 7 foot jump shot is apparently unguardable. Carmelo went ice cold after a hot second quarter, going 1 for 11 in the second half, the Knicks couldn't grab defensive rebounds to save their lives, and the Boston dirtbags were going crazy. And still, the Knicks had a 3 point lead after Toney Douglas's "big balls" moment. It was all downhill from there though; Great out of bounds play, questionable offensive foul, Ray Allen big balls, no timeouts, Carmelo gets his pet shot (a little deeper than preferred), not even close, Celtics win, PTU staff takes shots of Jameson late into the night on a Sunday.
The Knicks have had a Japanese Tsunami survivor's worth of painful losses in their history (at least in my lifetime) spanning all levels of the Hurt-o-meter. Let's say 1 is a torn off toe-nail, and 10 is a Phillips screw driver in your scrotum. Reggie's 8 points in 9 seconds would be an 8 naturally (ball point pen to the eye-ball), and his 25 points in the fourth quarter of game 5 in 94 would be a 6 (car door repeatedly slammed on your fingers for a minute straight) since the pain is dulled by the fact we won that series. Games 6 and 7 vs. the Rockets were 9s because of how close they were to a Championship (tuning fork jabbed through your tongue), and Ewing's missed finger roll was a screw driver in the nuts since it was the end of the season and an era, and it was a God Damned lay-up. Avery Johnson's corner jumper in game 5 of the Finals was a 4 (yardstick across the knee-cap) since even if they had won that game, there was no way they would win the series.
Where does that leave last night's shit show? I'd say it was a 7 (bleeding hemorrhoids after a night of Indian food) which is also, coincidentally, Melo's number. The Knicks had a gift wrapped game won in what could have been a series changing defeat for the Celtics. Even if Boston, as expected, whupped them in game 2,the Knicks could come back to New York tied at 1 with rabid Garden fans out for blood over the Easter weekend. Instead, we all have to hope for Billups's injury to not be as bad as it looks, and a repeat dismal performance by the Celtics. I know Carmelo will have a better game (can't play much worse), but will the rest of the team be able to bounce back from a loss like that? Let's hope for the best. Here comes the pain.