I’ve Been Gone A Long Long Time…

Tom Brady during the Super Bowl of Hell

I can admit the Patriots’ Loss Hurt Me extremely, but like any grumpy bear, College girls and their lack of clothing in the warm weather got me out of my cage.

I’ve been gone for a long time. There has been so much I have wanted to say to people. Instead of going nuts and blogging about each thing, I will try to remember when the opinion entered my mind or was written down on paper, how I was going to rant about it, and analyze whether it would come to fruition.

This is over a span of 4-6 months, so sit back and enjoy:

* Baseball – Mid-October: Had a conversation about how amazing Manny was as a hitter with a close friend and a fellow friend/Yankee rival. The Yankee rival talked about how the Red Sox were done, had nothing against the Yankees, and that the Yankees would win the series AND that Manny was on his last gasp.

I retorted with the fact that the Yankees are a sorry team and that Cleveland’s got its swagger back from the glory days of the 90’s. Also, the whole lineup ( and not just A-Rod ) doesn’t necessarily suck in the playoffs but rarely come up with clutch hits against teams with good pitching. I also added a long diatribe of how much Manny has been misunderstood ( stemming from the great read about him in the New Yorker, the WEEI Manny bashing his injured oblique that he played on during the season even when he shouldn’t have. ), the correlation to fans dislike of him in comparison to the fan’s confrontational stance with Ted Williams, and his ability to produce against pretty much any pitcher in baseball regardless of talent.

The conversation reached a fever-pitch as Manny came up to the plate against K-Rod in Game 2 in last year’s playoffs. I think you can tell from here that the conversation ended pretty surprisingly and abruptly. If anything, one of the main reasons I made this blog was to defend the Bad,Bad Man against the onslaught of media and fans who never appreciated how important he was to this franchise, how he will head to the HOF as one of the best hitters of all-time, and how his statistics and his presence in the lineup was worth the $20 million we forked out to him.

Now, everyone is bowing to the guy like they swept away the memories of bashing him on the radio, calling him lazy, hoping that his yearly need to leave the Sox ends up in a positive trade, and engaging alternative ways of using the money we are currently spending on him. I love Boston, and the fans are like no other, but the fair-weather attitude and revisionist memory only degrades our fan-hood and intelligence, and only gives more reasons for others to highlight elements that make us look like Massholes.

If anything, everyone who dissed Manny should write him a letter apologizing for the way they treated him before, because one good year of making him feel good might not keep him here since he will most likely remember the other seven ( we have control of the option, but I am talking 2K10.)

Basketball – March Maybe? – The Celtics got whipped by the Jazz. They could do nothing about it. What was scary about this game is that the Celtics began to lapse. They have done so in many games, the ones in which they are ahead and then play insanely sloppy as to have the other team come back within a few points. They haven’t done so in a game where they were evenly matched.

They were sloppy only for a little while, and they paid dearly for it. Rondo played a great game, but Deron Williams had his and the Celtics number all game. It demonstrated that this team can’t fall into a lapse, and that even at Rondo having a decent game, they can get hit with a decent loss.

The lapse in this game was not as bad as Washington or the first game in Detroit, but it showed that they can crack under pressure, and that a team can hold them at will if they don’t play at 100% ferocity.

I guess you can say it was a harbinger of things to come…

Basketball – April – The Celtics put on baby gloves against the Hawks, and the Hawks responded by treating them like mashed-up Gerber in their stadium. The Celtics broke down, and nearly choked under pressure. What was worse about the situation was that I couldn’t completely put the collapse on their role players. Rondo and Perkins, albeit lost on some occasions, pretty much played to where I expected them to play.

It was Garnett’s inability to shoot the shot when he had it, to aggressively go after players that watched him play in the NBA when they were in the 7th grade, and to maintain poise that was needed if other parts of the O-game fell apart.

It was Allen’s inability to make a shot at all during most of these games. He had clean looks on a decent amount, and barely had anything to do with the Celtics winning. He had a lot to do with them losing, especially when he allowed Joe Johnson to sprint pass him 4 times ( yes, four ) to make jumpers in the middle of the key. Understood you get backup help, but that’s the type of defense that keeps teams like Phoenix or Golden State from ever winning a championship.

I can only say that the breakdown periods in these games, the periods when the Celtics can’t score, can barely pass, and shoot incredibly stupid shots, the minutes when it looks like they never actually call a play, and they just meltdown into a turnover or out-of-bounds-pass? For a team that not only won 66 games, but BARELY loss 16, I am very wary of their ability to win under pressure. I could give a flying f&%K about the series when it started, and the series ended up taking up a lot my time because they didn’t finish.

This scares me, because now you have the pressure of containing a player who can go Uber-Jordan on your at any second, and moreso if they are within striking distance. I am scared because we may have to pass by a Pistons team that is talented, deep, and its guards can kill you and intimidate your backcourt. It scares me because the only teams we haven’t lost to in the West are the defending champions of basketball, and the other possesses a real deep team guided by arguably the best player of the 21st century.

I am a little scared. Maybe it is the Patriots Effect, but they better get their act together, or we’re gonna have to start this dance again in 2009.

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