Tonight, the Chicago Bulls and the Boston Celtics went to overtime for the fourth time in six games in the first round of the 2009 NBA playoffs. This game was particularly overtimish, reaching 3OT before the Bulls, who were down in the series 3-2, won by a point to force a decisive Game 7. This is ridiculous. It has come to the point where I’ve begun believing that the two teams have concocted some sort of outlandish agreement to play as many periods of basketball as they can before one team is sent home for the summer.
Let’s face it. Neither team wants to be knocked out of the playoffs. They both would like to continue playing basketball, but they know that that can’t happen. One team is going to lose. It’s a harsh reality. However, there have now been seven overtime periods, each equalling five minutes. That’s thirty-five minutes of extra basketball. If Game 7 goes into triple overtime to bring the grand total to fifty minutes, then the Bulls and Celtics will have managed to play a full extra game than they otherwise would have. Plus two minutes!
It really is a clever scheme these guys have created. I’m convinced that even in the two games that ended after regulation, the intent was to force overtime. But sometimes in basketball, things don’t work out the way you want, and you have to settle for normalcy.
To prove my theory that there’s some fishy business going on here, I urge you to take a look at Tyrus Thomas.
Look at this photograph from Game 1 and tell me something. Does that look like a man who is putting any effort into the game? Or does it look like a guy who is simply lollygagging on the court, waiting patiently for the clock to run out so that he may play some more basketball? Don’t even bother answering. It’s the latter. There just isn’t any heart. His face is riddled with boredom. Where’s the intensity? For all I know, Thomas would rather be knitting a sweater vest. You might notice that his body is dangerously close to the prone position. To me, that indicates that he’s practically sleeping! Is he wearing pajamas? I honestly can’t even tell. He might as well be. If only he would dive for that ball, sacrifice his body a little bit for the good of the team, then he could probably make a great play. But instead, the Boston/Chicago Accord of ’09 rears its ugly, selfish head.
This could have been one of the greatest playoff series in the history of the NBA, but instead it’s nothing more than an athletic tea party. And that’s a shame.