The National Basketball Association crowned a new champion Sunday night. The Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Orlando Magic 99 – 86, in game five of the NBA Finals, to seal the 15th championship for the franchise. It was fun while it lasted and really made it the point to the exclamation of this year’s playoff excitement. Throughout the last couple months, the two teams found themselves competing to get to this level, but on two separate roads. Neither road was a cakewalk, but both proved to be interesting enough to favor them to get in the championship.
Los Angeles Lakers started off the playoffs as the league’s third best team, record-wise, but first in the Western Conference. And of course, lets not forget the back story that led them to the Finals. Coach Phil Jackson going after the record for most championships, Kobe Bryant going for his fourth title, but first Shaquille O’neil-less title. A Laker team without Shaq would of course mean something because they haven’t won in the last two trips to the Finals without him. So a win this time around for the Lakers would mean the world. Well actually it’ll mean the world for anyone to make it to the top of the mountain, including the Orlando Magic. The Magic earned the right to play for the title more than any other team. In the Eastern Conference, they had the third best record behind the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Boston Celtics. As it would end up, the Magic had to play both of those teams. And play, or outplay they did. First beating the defending champs Celtics in seven games and then beating the NBA’s best Cavaliers in six.
So there we had the two teams in the NBA Finals, going at it to decide who will be the last team standing. Well as a citizen of one of the hometown’s of the teams involved, I would have to say I wasn’t as “third-party observer” as a journalist should be. So admitting my allegiance to the Magic, I’d have to say game one was not that exciting, as the Magic saw the Lakers coast to a 25-point victory. Game two gave us hope, a failed last second shot sent the game into overtime and the Lakers would eventually take a 2-1 lead in the series. For game three they moved to Orlando and the Magic would take their first and only victory. Things started to look up, especially when the Magic had a five-point lead with seconds to go in game four. But it would take some incredible missteps and luck for the Lakers to win that one, and they did. Any hope that Orlando had was taken away by a 2nd quarter run by the Lakers in game five. The Lakers celebrated the victory.
Not for nothin’, but no football and no more basketball, what am I suppose to watch on TV now? America’s Got Talent? Big Brother? C’mon…