Friday, April 24, 2009

Don't Call it a Comeback!

With the NBA playoffs still relatively young, we’ve been fortunate to already witness several classic games. Derrick Rose led the Bulls to an overtime win against the Celtics in Game 1, and those willing to stay up late last night saw another thriller, as the Jazz came from eight down to knock off the Lakers. Much like the Bulls game, a young point guard stepped up when the pressure was on, as Deron Williams came through in the clutch. Williams hit the game winner with 2.2 seconds to go, as Utah held off first seeded L.A. to creep back into the series.

I joked yesterday about how John Stockton and Karl Malone weren’t walking through that door, but last night the Jazz clearly didn’t need them. Utah has their own 21st Century combo of Stockton/Malone in Deron Williams and Carlos Boozer.

Boozer came through in a monstrous way as he dominated the Lakers inside with 23 points and 22 rebounds. While Boozer has been a rock for the Jazz ever since he came over, Deron Williams has been the most fascinating to watch. While he only had 13 points last night, Williams made the most of them, as he shined with the pressure on. In the post-game news conference, he said the original play was to run a pick and roll with Boozer. However, when that fell apart, Williams took it upon himself and drained the fade away jumper for the win. Make no question about it, Utah was backed into a corner in this game. Down 2-0 at home, they needed a win if they wanted any shot in this series, and Williams delivered that slimmer of hope for Jazz fans.

Will Utah come back to win this series? Probably not, as the chances are slim that Kobe Bryant will be held under twenty points again. But to quote Kevin Garnett (and Lonely Island), with Williams and Boozer on the floor, anything is possible.

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