Do or Die
Tonight will reveal which team will have the opportunity to be swept by the Miami Heat beginning next week. The Sixers and Celts are about 2 hours away from tip-off in a do or die game 7 at the Garden. I won’t pull a KG and call the Celtics fans “fair weather” even though for about 10 years a significantly less amount of people went to the games because they were bad and even this year I did not hear one word about the Celtics from fans until about one month remaining in the regular season because they had finally taken first place from the Sixers. Quite frankly, I think any team that is bad for a long period of time is bound to lose fans and have low attendance. Why would you buy season tickets or pay to go to games to watch your team put on a bad show? That’s like hearing every critic tell you this movie was the worst they have ever seen and you still paying 14 dollars to go see it in the movie theater. Anyway, I don’t care what KG says, he is a thug who would have been booed out of Boston this year if he did not have an epiphany at the beginning of the playoffs and found some way to play like he had in his prime.
This series has been ugly, brutal at times, and I do not think either of these teams has any chance at beating the Heat. You cannot honestly call yourself a championship contender and consistently have multiple quarters a game scoring under 15 points. That is unacceptable and will not get you a sniff at the championship. I am extremely surprised the Sixers have managed to get to a game seven. Maybe the NBA really is rigged and was telling the refs not to call anything for the Sixers all series. I am leaning towards the fact that the refs have no respect for any of the Sixers players yet and that is why they are getting no calls. During the regular season the Sixers were a mid-range jump shooting team, that rarely drove to the hoop. In these playoffs, Lou Williams and Jrue Holiday have been attacking relentlessly. However, the back of their jerseys do not say Pierce or Garnett so they have not been getting any calls. It’s a sad trend in this league, and I think the NBA needs more teams like the Sixers to bring respectful play and gamesmanship back to the league. You don’t see them falling down when getting bumped at the 3 point line just to emphasize the fact that they got fouled, or see them complaining to the referees every time a foul is called on them. The league is full of floppers and embellishers, and the Celtics have one of the worst offenders in Paul Pierce. Pierce is a good player, but to constantly drive to the hoop and throw your arms up in the air with no expectations of the ball ending up anywhere near the basket is embarrassing, especially when he gets calls from the refs every time. Why can’t he take the ball to the hoop and go up strong without flailing his arms and screaming like he just got hit by an 18 wheeler? In the 3rd quarter of game 6, he was dribbling 4 feet behind the 3 point line and got bumped by Lavoie Allen. It was a clear foul, and it would have been called yet he felt the need to flop to the ground.
I’m not trying to pick on Paul Pierce, because there are many other players in the league who do it, but I can honestly say nobody on the Sixers plays that way. They play hard, honest basketball which is something every team should do. You wouldn’t catch Julius Erving and Larry Bird flopping around the court or snapping their heads back when a guy puts his hand on their chest. The Sixers might not be as talented as other teams, they might not have as much experience, but they play as a team and play the game the right way. That is why I think the basketball God’s are looking down on them tonight and helping them fight through the adversity of being in a game 7 at the Garden where the refs will continue to be favorable for the Celtics. If they lose, they lose and it won’t be the refs fault. The whole series the refs have been against them and they’ve won 3 games, so there is no reason they can’t win game 7. I honestly think the Celtics have realized once Avery Bradley went down for the season that their chances of beating the Heat or one of the West teams was slim to none. That is why I like the Sixers to come out smoking tonight as they did in game 5, but they won’t relinquish the lead this time. Sixers advance to the East Finals to get swept by LeBron, but tonight is every Sixers fan’s championship. The chance to end the Big 3 era. It will be sweet.