This was a pretty weird day of playoff basketball. On one side of the bracket we had a second round matchup of Philly and Boston taking place. While the 4 vs 5 matchup is often a toss of the coin, it’s quite uncommon for a five seed to end up securing home court in the second round of the playoffs. This is the fortunate hand the C’s have been dealt.
Out West we had the surprising contest between Los Angeles and Denver heading in to a game seven. While it seems like every year the Lakers are faced with some adversity, and are put in a backs against the wall situation, we were once again tricked in to thinking that the window had shut on Kobe’s Lakers, soon to discover this just wasn’t the case at all. In a game that could have gone either way, the Lakers have advanced and remain in the conversation.
3 votes – Rajon Rondo. I love everything about Rondo. I love that he can fake a behind the back pass 99 times throughout a game, and then fake it one more time – which still surprises his opponents. I love that just when you think you’ve seen him at his best, he outdoes himself. And I love seeing him sky above the bigs and pull down rebounds with his ridiculously long arms.
Rondo finished the game with a triple double – 13 points, 12 rebounds, 17 assists. He pushed the ball in transition, hit KG in his sweet spot (over and over again) and when the time called for it, he slowed the tempo and managed the clock. This was a masterful performance by Rajon Rondo, one that I plan on watching a few more times before the season comes to an end.
2 votes – Pau Gasol. Throughout the past couple of seasons, Pau Gasol has been copping it left, right and centre. He’s been under performing and quite frankly making life a little harder than it should be for his two buddies, Kobe and Bynum. This wasn’t the case tonight. In this win or go home game for LA, Pau managed 23 points and 17 rebounds.
1 vote – Kevin Garnett. Throughout his career if KG was nothing else, he was a shot maker. He’s an intimidating dude who works hard at both ends of the floor. Thanks to our triple vote getter Rajon Rondo, KG has been rewarded with plenty of nice looks from his favourite spot on the floor. Since the all-star break KG has been hitting the 17-footers with regularity and there was no exception tonight. He managed 29 points, 11 boards and 3 blocks on 60% shooting from the field.