Big Baby and Lil Nate got down got down
On October 29th, 1966 an animated series debuted entitled The Mighty Heroes. Strong Man, Rope Man, Cuckoo Man, Tornado Man and Diaper Man protected (or tried to) Good Haven from a very formidable (if not comedic) super villain every episode. The heroes would escape after finding themselves on the brink of destruction to ultimately defeat the enemy and save the day. The most intriguing and captivating (yes I’m speaking of a captivating cartoon character) heroes were Strong Man and Diaper (Di-ah-per) Man. Guess who was who last night?
Unorthodox, but effective
Early on, Shannon Brown made a couple of buckets which helped the Lakers get out to an early lead. Since Andrew Bynum was injured and really couldn’t go anything close to 100%, the Lakers were in a dog fight. Kobe seemed to be making everything despite shooting 10-22. The damage was done by Beans from the arc where he was 6-11. Boston was in trouble. Pierce was having a decent game and had 19 and Ray Allen was somewhat respectable with 12 after going scoreless from the field in Game 3, but the Celtics needed something.
Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo had 13 and 10, respectively, but shot a combined 10-28. Kendrick Perkins could muster just 6 of his own. Something had to give and Doc Rivers did what he had to do and went to his bench.
Diaper Man had a big 12 points in 16 minutes and Strong Man muscled the Lakers depleted front line for 18 and shot 7-11. Davis and Robinson jumped out of their skin to help their team win and hypothetically caught some energy in Diaper Man’s bottle along the lines of Popeye Celtic green spinach. Both had killer minds and took it to the Lakers in ways we haven’t seen in the playoffs since maybe Vinnie the Microwave Johnson.
Am I wrong? When is the last time a bench was this effective in the Finals? Houston?
About 8 minutes into the fourth, Rivers sent 4 of his starters to the scorer’s table to spell the Mighty Heroes (plus Tony Allen and Rasheed Wallace), but since Los Angeles had nothing but Kobe’s 33 and Gasol’s 21, Rivers went with what was working. The lead was steady and even hovering around double digits, so Doc’s decision seemingly was easy.
Robinson and Davis are straight football.
The only other Laker in double figures was Lamar Odom with ten.
There is a serious disparity in points in the paint after game 1:
Game 1: 48-30 Lakers
Game 2: 36-26 Celtics
Game 3: 50-38 Celtics
Game 4: 54-34 Celtics
The bench is also a thorn in the Lakers side.
The Celtics bench outscored their Lakers counterpart 23-6 in the second half and 36-18 overall. Heading into the fourth, Doc mentioned his team was doing too much with the bounce and that was all Robinson needed to hear. He went straight to the hole whenever he saw an opening with his head down and hands soft. If he missed, Davis was there to clean up and seemed a lot more comfortable without Bynum in the lane taking up space.
In previous games, Bynum didn’t have to leave the floor to block Davis’ shots.
I had Boston winning 95-90 pregame mainly because of the uncertainty surrounding Bynum’s knee.
His knee is aching something crazy and if Bynum remains ineffective, we might be looking at 2008 all over again. Gasol and Bynum are a little too much for the Celtics because of their length and if you take either player away Boston has a distinct advantage.
Factor in that Lamar Odom has disappointed and the Lakers bench is nonexistent and you have your reasons why the Celtics are in this series with a chance to claim their 18th NBA title.
Boston is as resilient as Marcus Allen’s wild card, Super Bowl winning Raiders. They keep fighting and scratching and clawing and exploding and rebounding and eventually scoring. They got to every ball that was loose and it’s no wonder the Celtics are 6-1 following a loss in these playoffs.
They don’t stop and this is a true team effort no matter what happens the next three potential games.
The Celtics won 30 games this season without a 20 point scorer and became the first team in 25 NBA Finals to win a game without a single player hitting for 20. They played desperate and took a Kobe Bryant led victory from Los Angeles. As long as Kobe is shooting threes, not going to the line and getting the Celtics front line in foul trouble, again, the Celtics have an obvious advantage.
Paul Pierce’s 3 point play with 1:15 to go over Bryant was the dagger.
Oh…did you see Eddie Rush take a bolo from Pierce?
Beside Kobe’s aforementioned 6-11, neither team shot well from behind the arc (Boston 3-12 and L.A. 7-20). Shannon Brown had the only other three for the Lakers.
Kobe and Pau are gonna do their thing but last night, so did Big Baby and Lil Nate.
Diaper Man and Strong Man were the difference or was it Mantan and Sleep ‘N Eat Shrek and Donkey?
The Mighty Heroes circa 1966…
|D. Mbenga||DNP — COACH’S DECISION|
|J. Powell||DNP — COACH’S DECISION|
|L. Walton||DNP — COACH’S DECISION|
|A. Morrison||DNP — INACTIVE|
|M. Finley||DNP — COACH’S DECISION|
|S. Williams||DNP — COACH’S DECISION|
|T. Gaffney||DNP — INACTIVE|
|O. Lafayette||DNP — INACTIVE|
|B. Scalabrine||DNP — INACTIVE|
Officials: Scott Foster, Eddie F. Rush, Greg Willard
Time of Game: 2:38
- R. Wallace (7:25 – 4th Qtr)
- N. Robinson (5:39 – 4th Qtr)