First of all, I am sorry to disappoint those who took my prolonged absence from the blogosphere as a sign that I had either given up the pen or died. I know you were very excited about both of these possibilities, and if you stick around long enough I'm sure you will get your wish. For now, however, I'm still here, and we might as well make the most of it. Hold on to your seats, here are seven observations arising from and relating to the NBA Conference Finals:
7) At the moment I'm writing this, the Lakers are up 8 points at the end of the first quarter in Game 2. When they play with the intensity they came out with tonight, they are tough to beat. When the officials come out and officiate the way they have tonight, the Lakers are impossible to beat. At this point, I know me complaining about NBA officiating is about as original as a young actress leaking a snuff flick so I won't make you endure another rant. Suffice it to say, the Nuggets wouldn't be any worse off if Spike Lee was wearing a whistle.
6) Speaking of Spike, SHAME ON YOU, SPIKE LEE!!!! You are one of the most accomplished, respected, and socially relevant filmmakers of all time. You are the man that brought us "She's Gotta Have It"; "Do the Right Thing"; "Jungle Fever"; "Malcolm X"; "He Got Game"; and "The Original Kings of Comedy", among many other amazing films. In other words, you are one of the all time greats, and you didn't need to make a nauseating 2 hour infomercial for one of the the most unlikeable athletes of all time as part of his relentless campaign to convince the world he is not a bad guy. Nope, you didn't have to do it. But, you did. Then, you showed up court side for Game 1 of the Conference finals, decked out in Laker gear and cheering for the Show like a life long fan. If I were a Knick fan, I would rather see Stephon Marbury and Steve Francis in the back-court next year than see Spike Lee sitting courtside. Everything about this Spike/Kobe relationship infuriates me. I have to move on.
5) I've labored over this decision, but I think K-Mart's lips tattoo edges out Steph's head tattoo for NBA Playoff Tattoo of the Year. On the bright side, I've consulted Paula Abdul and she thinks Steph's tattoo has a real chance to be a star because of its presence, originality, and ability to make every head its own.
4) We just reached the half in the Lakers/Nuggets game. Three observations for the price of one here: 1) Considering the Nuggets could not, let me repeat that in all caps...COULD NOT have played with less effort, and someone on the Lakers actually has to brandish a weapon to draw a foul call, it's not a good sign for the Show that they are only up a point at the break; 2) I really hope we see the replay of Chauncey throwing the ball off Kobe's back on the inbounds pass in Spike's next documentary, "Kobe Getting Worked"; and 3) Kobe's MJ impersonation in the halftime interview was dead on. Great job by him. He always rises to the occasion.
3) Does anyone else love the fact that John Barry calls Mike Wilbon "Wilby"? Not sure why, but that slays me. While we are here, I just have to say how much I love the announcing and studio crews during the conference finals. One night you get Marv, Doug Collins, and the TNT studio crew. Then, the next night you get the Breen, Jackson, Van Gundy triumvirate coupled with JB, Magic, and Wilby in the studio! I mean, does it get any better than that? This is just another reason why the NBA Playoffs are so much fun to watch. The NBA, where amazing announcing happens.
2) Dwight Howard went for 30 and 13 in Game 1 and was sensational. He is now giving a nationally televised interview in a wife beater. It's good to be Dwight Howard.
1) Finally, the Magic deserve all the credit in the world for coming back from a huge halftime deficit, withstanding a relentless onslaught by Lebron, and stealing Game 1. So, here you go Orlando, here's your credit. Now, enjoy the next four games and enjoy your off-season. If any of you think Game 1 is an indication that Lebron is not winning a ring, and based off many emails I received today, you do, you are wrong. Cleveland has only 10 more games to wait until they can finally have the parade they have longed for on the banks of the Cuyahoga. Unless, of course, the EPA forbids that many people from getting anywhere near the Cuyahoga.