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Running Blog for Game 2 of the NBA Finals

I should totally be studying for my rock n’ roll music history test, or writing my independent study paper, or reading something important … but it’s time for Game 2 of the NBA Finals!! And I’ve got a hankering for some blogging.

Thanks for following along!

I think he's probably focused.

I think he's probably focused.

7:49 p.m. – I just saw that note on how Brett Favre had surgery on his injured shoulder recently. That’s really depressing to me, because I just want this story to end. Just go away, Brett!

7:50 p.m. – Also, after Roy Halladay’s effort today, who would you want for the rest of this year?: Halladay or Zack Greinke?

7:56 p.m. – OK, let’s get to basketball. And what’s more basketball than the winner of American Idol, Kris Allen, singing the National Anthem? Personally, I think Adam Lambert got robbed.

Oh, who am I kidding? I didn’t watch the show this year. I couldn’t care less.

Also, this is the slowest Star-Spangled Banner ever. This is taking so long, the Lakers are now up 2-0 in the series.

8:03 p.m. – I think this will be a close game tonight. It has to be, right? It can’t possibly be any worse than Game 1. I think the margin of victory will be seven or less. And I guess I’ll pick the Lakers to win this game, but I am not completely confident on that.

8:06 p.m. – I haven’t seen a movie in theaters for about a month, which is a long time for me. I don’t think “Year One” is going to break that streak.

8:08 p.m. – Since it’s Sunday, the Lakers are in their home whites. There are few better-looking uniforms in sports.

8:10 p.m. – Two whistles within the first 90 seconds. Each foul was very iffy. I am going have a blast watching this game if that keeps up.

8:12 p.m. – Kobe Bryant hurts his right ankle slightly. That’ll hamper him to score only 35 points tonight, I’m sure.

8:13 p.m. – Finally, Hedo Turkoglu hits an open 3-pointer. That had to feel good.

8:14 p.m. – Nice block by Howard. He really used the net to his advantage. You can’t teach those types of fundamentals.

Seriously, you can’t teach THAT!

8:20 p.m. – So that two fouls on Pietrus, Bynum and Lee. I’ve only got a beef with about half of those calls, so I really can’t expect much more.

8:21 p.m. – The fouls have obviously hurt the pace of the game, but Howard looks a little better, a little more active tonight than in Game 1. Neither team is lighting it up from the field. That’s got to be a bigger worry for Orlando.

8:23 p.m. – Kobe Bryant has always been intense. Maybe it’s a little stronger for the finals, but I think people are over-reacting to this snarl thing.

With that being said, nevermind the picture at the top of this blog.

8:28 p.m. – First to 70 wins. Man, with all of the fouls and bricks being thrown up so far, this has been a tough game to watch. And it doesn’t help make this post any more interesting either.

8:33 p.m. – Nice fight by Howard. He looks very good!

8:40 p.m. – Thoughts on the first quarter: ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ!!!

Lowest combined scoring in a first quarter in NBA history. Great.

8:42 p.m. – I really don’t know why Tony Battie is still in the league. He’s not very strong, he’s not a great shooter or rebounder or passer or shot-blocker. Why???

8:43 p.m. – And Battie hits a tough turn-around jumper over Lamar Odom. I’ve always liked him, you know?

8:46 p.m. – Sixteen fouls in a little more than 15 minutes. NBA basketball: It’s ref-tastic!

When have you ever seen a team get called for two moving screens in the same half. They never call that!

8:51 p.m. – I really should have started studying for that test instead.

8:52 p.m. – Nice move by Bynum. And then Rashard Lewis hits a 3. Hey, this is looking like a basketball game!

8:59 p.m. – This is going to be a critical last 5 minutes for Orlando. I feel a shift in momentum a little bit toward LA. They have to maintain. But, you have to wonder when Kobe is going to start forcing the shots.

9:02 p.m. – Rashard Lewis is 6-for-9 shooting. All other Magic players: 4 for 23. Howard already has 11 rebounds, but he is being absolutely shielded on offense.

9:04 p.m. – Mike Breen says Dwight Howard does not swear. It’s my duty to disprove that for the rest of these finals.

9:06 p.m. – Sure, let’s leave Kobe Bryant wide open. Nicely done, J.J.

But, Rashard Lewis just keeps answering back. He has 17 of the Magic’s 32 points.

9:07 p.m. – Make that 20 of 35 points by Lewis. If anyone else on Orlando was playing even decently, the Magic would be leading. In a sense, that’s encouraging for Orlando, but it can’t be this bad for two consecutive games.

9:09 p.m. – I am pretty sure that J.J. Redick was not the man to take that last shot. That’s kind of been the Magic’s offense in a nutshell for this first half, other than Lewis. Without Rashard, the Magic would be shooting 16 percent.

Yet, they only trail 40-35 at the half. The Lakers have to be pleased with their defense and their continued ability to shut down Howard.

The Magic have to be at least encouraged that they are still in this game despite horrible offense from all but one of their players.

9:21 p.m. – The Magic have 11 turnovers in the first half. They had eight in all of Game 1. Without Lewis, they are 1 for 9 from 3-point range.

Again, only down by 5.

9:23 p.m. – Great, emotional story about Trevor Ariza. It’s hard to believe that Chris Connelly was once just a nerdy MTV VJ in the early 90s. Now he’s a nerdy-but-good TV features reporter.

9:25 p.m. – That “Impact” TV movie on ABC looks horrible. We’ve seen this many times before in a more dire situation. I mean, at least this TV movie isn’t as bad a “Deep Impact.” It’s just … “Impact.” Deep? Nah.

9:27 p.m. – Do athletes ever look as if they are actually listening to their coach’s halftime chats?

9:30 p.m. – “We’ve all been invited to the party; somebody get on the dance floor with me.” Oh, Mark Jackson. How I loathe your pointless metaphors.

9:33 p.m. – Just like that, the Magic have the lead. But, here comes Kobe, hitting two shots with people in his face.

9:33 p.m. – Make that three shots with people in his face. Wow!

9:35 p.m. – Jeff Van Gundy posed the question of whether it’s good or bad, but having Odom instead of Bynum on the floor is bad for Orlando. Odom is more athletic and has made much better plays in this series. He can also help a little bit out of the paint.

9:36 p.m. – Rafer Alston is going to blame that airball 3 on being cold because of his lack of play on Thursday.

9:39 p.m. – Yes, Dwight Howard should be everything like Patrick Ewing. Emulate his post moves. Recover his abilty to never win big games.

9:43 p.m. – So, Howard’s first dunk of the series is negated by Bryant’s better dunk on the other end. They have one-upped them all series.

9:46 p.m. – Well, we’re getting that closer game that I called for. For Game 3, I’ll make sure to specify that I want to see a close, better-played game.

9:47 p.m. – Magic up by two points with 3 minutes to play in the third. This by a team on the road, with its best player being shut down offensively and shooting 29 percent without Rashard Lewis.

9:51 p.m. – I think those LeBron-Kobe puppets have seen their 15 minutes.

9:54 p.m. – Speaking of players not listening to their coaches, has Phil Jackson ever motivated anybody through words? Ever?

9:55 p.m. – Nice play by Turkoglu with the pass to Howard, but it’s only good because of its result. That was mega-risky.

9:57 p.m. – The Magic finally wake up offensively. But, with Kobe in a close game at home in the fourth quarter, the Lakers do have a little bit of an advantage.

At the least, it seems as if Turkoglu has joined Lewis in the group of Magic players who actually know how to shoot a basketball.

10:00 p.m. – Interesting lineup for the Lakers to start the fourth. You have a cold Shannon Brown, Luke Walton, Andrew Bynum and Kobe Bryant not taking his usual rest at the start of the fourth.

10:03 p.m. – Dwight Howard takes a seat. Not a bad move, considering that Howard is doing nothing offensively and Gortat has held his own inside. Get your best player fresh and see if he can come back with something in the final minutes.

10:04 p.m. – “Inevitable Kobe Bryant run.” So says Stan Van Gundy’s brother. We’ll see.

10:05 p.m. – Right now, it’s the inexplicable Lamar Odom run.

10:11 p.m. – Big shot by Lewis there. I was getting a little nervous there that J.J. Redick was going to take that shot.

10:13 p.m. – That’s horrible call by the officials. Horrible. Pau Gasol maybe tipped his fingers. In this situation and with this score, that can’t be a foul. God, horrible.

10:14 p.m. – Now this is looking like an NBA Finals. Rashard Lewis has been killer all night. But by now, the Lakers should know that and get out on him better. Howard is not going to win this game for Orlando.

10:19 p.m. – I don’t know what’s more amazing: that Kobe’s tipped pass almost went in or that he passed up an open jumper inside the free-throw line?

10:21 p.m. – Five fouls on Odom. He’s not your prototypical big man, but he can’t play with five fouls with this much time left.

10:22 p.m. – I am not sure of the stats, but Dwight Howard has shot the ball pretty well from the line this postseason. It seems like it.

And Jack Nicholson cracks me up. You understand that he’s 72 years old. He shouldn’t be that animated.

10:27 p.m. – You have to bring in Courtney Lee here. We’ll see what he’s made of here.

Mickael Pietrus should just erase these two games from his mind.

10:28 p.m. – Lakers up 82-81 with 2:42 left. Good stuff. This game has really picked up since the half. Does Kobe do it yet again, or is Lewis or the Turkish Jordan the star of Game 2?

10:30 p.m. – That “Public Enemies” movie looks great, but the focus of that movie should be those incredible hats. You can’t go wrong looking like that.

10:33 p.m. – If J.J. Redick is going to hit those types of shots in these situations, you have to accept that if you are the Lakers. I am not worried about J.J. Redick.

10:34 p.m. – Lewis and Bryant go back-to-back on bank shots. Tied with less than a minute left. What a game!

10:35 p.m. – And Turkoglu answers with a big shot at the edge of the 3-point line. Now, where is this “closer” fella? He better show up about now.

You know what’s going to happen, right? Kobe is going to get the ball at the top of the key with about 15 seconds left on the shot clock, try to break his man down and then pull up for a jumper from 15-20 feet away. He loves it. You can see it coming, too. It starts when he dribbles through his legs. And he makes it a good percentage of the time.

Let’s watch …

10:39 p.m. – OK, first of all, what a lucky change of fortune for Derek Fisher. That ball gets tipped right to Gasol instead of being picked off. Very, very lucky.

Courtney Lee panicked a little bit, but he pretty much blew that layup. Good box-out by the Lakers.

If you don’t know what’s coming, just read the above large paragraph and take away the shot clock.

10:42 p.m. – What a job of focusing on Kobe Bryant! Teams try to do it all the time, but that was so well-performed. They guarded him from the entry pass, Turkoglu was all over him, and when he got passed, three guys collapsed on Kobe, but Hedo didn’t give up on the play.

Just 0.6 seconds left …

10:43 p.m. – The Lakers have to guard the inbound pass. Just put a hand in someone’s face. It can’t be much of a set shot, so just contest.

10:45 p.m. – Who takes this shot? Lewis? Hedo? A lob to Howard? J.J. Redick? Just kidding.

10:46 p.m. – Great setup, good pick, good roll, good pass … just a little too strong by Lee.

Hey, who wants some overtime?!?!?!

10:48 p.m. – Man, I never going to have time to study for this test …

10:50 p.m. – Howard has to learn just to keep the ball up higher in the post.

10:51 p.m. – After what we’ve seen tonight from the officials, how is that not a foul by the Lakers? Consistency, people!

10:53 p.m. – If he could hit his shots, J.J. Redick could be the MVP of this series. That’s how many opportunities to hit shots he will have.

10:54 p.m. –And the Magic’s 20th turnover of the night leads to free throws for Fisher that could put the Lakers up by three with 2 minutes to play in OT.

10:56 p.m. –Oh, bad break for Turkoglu, and then Gasol converts the And-1 on the other end that may be the death nail. Where is Rashard Lewis out of this timeout?

10:58 p.m. – Wow, J.J. Redick …

11:00 p.m. – Another heartbreak shot there. Turkoglu experienced that earlier. And this is going to be a heart-breaking loss for Orlando.

11:01 p.m. – No matter the result, do you think any of the columnists who said that this series would be over in four games on Friday will review their stance and give the Magic some credit?

And just as I say that, Rashard Lewis strikes again! He is one of the few Magic players who actually deserve a post-game meal tonight.

11:05 p.m. – Magic do the smart thing of fouling right away.

11:06 p.m. – Tremendous free throws from Odom … and that’s it!

11:08 p.m. – Lakers win 101-96 in overtime.

I can’t believe J.J. Redick hoisted up that shot near the end. Find ANYONE else! I mean, except for Howard, ANYONE ELSE!

11:10 p.m. – Obviously, a tough loss for the Magic. They needed this one. They are a great home team and feed off a loud home crowd, but the fact that they won’t have the possibility to win this series at home really hurts them. They have now been blown out in LA and they have lost after leading in overtime in LA. How do they win on the road in this series? I think that doubt is in their minds.

11:14 p.m. – Maybe I am just naive, but I expect the Lakers to give away one game in Orlando. Hopefully, they keep the intensity up after they were tested tonight, but I think they will let one game just slip away.

But they are clearly in the driver’s seat, if any more obvious statement need be typed. They have dominated Howard in two games at home, and Rashard Lewis looks to be the only player that can REALLY hurt them.

I still think this series is going to at least a sixth game, but I think the writing on the wall as far as the series winner.

11:17 p.m. – I am now watching the local news here in Orlando. It’s so somber that it’s a little funny. Objectivity, news reporters.

HAHAHA! They were scanning around inside a bar in Downtown Orlando on the news, looking at all the depressed Magic fans, and the camera caught a guy with a shirt on that said “F*CK THE LAKERS”.

Stupendous.

11:19 p.m. – This was a fun, exciting game after halftime, and I appreciate all of you who followed along and checked out the blog during the game.

Since I am a Lakers fan down in Orlando, I may be going to Game 3, 4 and/or 5, but you can bet I’ll be posting another running blog for any of the games that I don’t attend.

Thanks again and night, kids!

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  1. Padrick
    June 8, 2009 at 4:01 am

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