Due to various familial obligations, I joined both Friday and Sunday’s games while already in progress. Upon learning the scores as I did so, the sensation I felt on each occasion was exactly opposite of its counterpart: joy & excitement versus disappointment & unrealistic hopes for a comeback.
Did we learn anything from these two games? Yes and No. On the one hand, we learned that chemistry and corporate knowledge in a lot of cases can be more than enough to trump a collection of talented pieces; but on the other our awareness that “off nights” can happen to anyone was merely reaffirmed.
I am not going to dwell on the Heat game too much, and I’m only going to think about the Laker game a modest amount more than that. When we see a team thrash and be thrashed within 48 hours, I think it’s safe to say that we are dealing with outliers on the winning/ losing spectrum.
I should note, that I am going to think about Game 81 on April 12th a heck of a lot between now and then. The reason? I am concerned that the whispers of the 2010-2011 Spurs being nothing more than emporers without clothes were proven true yesterday. In the end, My fretful worrying about that game may be much ado about nothing. If the Spurs are locked into their best seeding for the playoffs, Pop might elect for player rest over winning at all costs. I hope not, I hope that Pop at least goes into that game with a checklist of things he wants to test. For instance, can Tiago Splitter counter-balance the Bynum effect? Can Parker and/or Manu get to their spots? Can Timmy elevate his effectiveness? Can Blair’s pros be used in a way that his cons are minimized?
p.s. I do realize that to this point the Spurs and Lakers have pretty much just traded blow-outs and I shouldn’t read too much into either of them.