Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Bees' Knees

In 94% of all cases where one NBA team in the playoffs jumps out to a 2-0 start, the series ends with that team winning. The New Orleans Hornets joined that slender six percent minority last night when they dropped the seventh and final game of their series with the defending world champion San Antonio Spurs 92-81. It doesn't make any difference that they were in the game, getting as close at three points before the Spurs put the game out of reach. It is just another example of the futility of putting one's hopes on a New Orleans team only to see them dashed on the rocks of chance and circumstance. If I were a betting man, I would have lost it all after having seen how confidently the Hornets took the first two games away from the Spurs. But then the games shifted to San Antonio. It was there that significant blowout wins were won against the Hornets and the momentum seemed to swing towards the Spurs. The Hornets had a chance to put the series out of reach in Game Five and to win the series outright in Game Six, but they allowed San Antonio the opportunity to rebound with consecutive wins both home and away. The doldrums have set in here much as they did Sunday when Cleveland's Cavaliers and King James were put away by Boston. New Orleans has turned around what had begun as a so-so season into one of the best in the league. Attendance has risen sharply and all of the excitement they generated this season will spill over into next year's. But again we sit wondering what went wrong. And again we hear that time honored phrase "Wait 'till next year!"

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