DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – I have always said that the NBA playoffs are kind of like the WWE with a little competition sprinkled on top.
The matchups seem pre-determined, the refs tend to favor the victor, and it’s not until we get to the NBA Finals (or the parallel Wrestlemania and John Cena vs. The Rock…Brahma Bull baby!) that we see games we like and aren’t certain about the outcome.
Until last year’s playoffs. While I am not a NBA historian…for my money…those were the best we have seen in years and for that matter…may ever see!
I know what you’re thinking…it’s because our Dallas Mavericks won the title right?! But that’s not it. We saw an 8 seed beat a number 1. The Western Conference was so stacked last year…the Memphis Grizzlies were able to take out the San Antonio Spurs in a series that went 6 games, and saw almost every one of them go down to the wire.
8 seeds beating number ones don’t happen often. Denver upset Seattle in 1994 and need I remind anyone the Golden State Warriors beat the Mavs in 07’…in a year Dallas looked destined to return to the Finals!
Then there was Oklahoma City finally establishing themselves at the up and coming team…one that we may be talking about for some time. A true superstar in Kevin Durant, showcasing his talents in a way that reminded us of a young Michael Jordan taking his first playoff steps.
The series they had with Memphis was remarkable. 7 games of which young team wants it more. A scrappy team of no names in Memphis or a team whose star will inevitably one day hoist a Finals trophy. In the end it was the Thunder.
And then of course, who could forget the Mavs. No one in their right mind figured Dallas would compete for a title…they would be lucky to get out of the first round. But after disposing of Portland…they did the unthinkable…sweep the defending Champion and hated Los Angeles Lakers. Many (including this guy) are still scratching our heads at this one.
It was a year in which Dirk finally inserted himself as a true champion…and shed the label of “can’t win the big one”. Dallas was no longer a “soft “ or a “finesse” team.
And the Finals were truly the good guys versus the bad guys. The Mavericks had America backing them against the Miami Heat…a team almost despised as much as Kim Kardashian…when LaBron James made his infamous “decision” to take his talents to South Beach. Justice was served in 6 when the Mavs took home their first Larry O’Brian trophy.
This year don’t expect that kind of magic. Not from the Mavs…who are limping into the playoffs with a MUCH weaker team…or from anyone else. We know who it’s going to be. Oklahoma City and San Antonio in the West…and Chicago and Miami in the East…with most likely the Thunder taking on the Heat for the championship.
Once again…the playoffs will be like the WWE…without the surprise run in. It’s been that way for years and will continue to be…until it’s changed (don’t get me started!) So here is to another month and a half of drawn out NBA worthlessness…and to hoping that we get the People’s Elbow dropped on David Stern.
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