Whoever's running the show 'up there' just HAS to be a Lakers fan. Otherwise, how to explain Larry Brown NOT telling his players to foul the Lakers at the end of regulation time? Maybe he couldn't imagine the Lakers letting Shaq O'Neal touch the ball, but it shouldn't have mattered.
The defensive demon Detroit Pistons should have fallen on Shaq like a bunch of rabid dogs as soon as he touched the ball. And failing that, Rip Hamilton didn't bearhug The Adulterer as the seconds ticked away, playing off him like a drive was a distinct possibility. What an incredible group brain cramp. The resulting OT was just as predictable as tomorrow's sunrise.
When you add the mental malaise to the Sam Cassell injury and Derek Fisher's Horry-clone performance against San Antonio, it's beginning to look like SOMEBODY with a higher power is just itching to make Smiling Jack a happy man.
The shenanigans Tuesday night brought an end to the best four day stretch ANY pro sports owner might have enjoyed ... ever! William Davidson had his pro franchises win the last two games of the Stanley Cup, sandwiched around an NBA Finals opening road victory. And it looked like it was going to be two in a row for the Pistons and an historically-perfect death-hold on the series. Then, Larry Brown called a timeout and told his guys something THEY translated as "Play this straight up!"
All of that said, the Lakers certainly didn't TURN IT ON and ride roughshod over the Pistons. The MailMan looks close to pooped out, playing on wiles alone at this point. Gary Payton looks all talked out too. Only the unexpected contributions of Billy's boy, Luke Walton, kept the Lakers in THIS game. Could it be I'm waffling on my Lakers Win prediction?
Nah. But I'm worried I'll be happily wrong.