Post-Finals Thoughts

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Published: June 18, 2008

So there you have it. The Boston Celtics: your 2008 NBA Champions. From rock bottom a year ago to the top of the mountain today.

Kevin Garnett gives PJ Brown the Gatorade shower

Here's a few thoughts knocking around my brain as I wonder how I'll survive three-plus months without NBA basketball… 

1) First and foremost, congrats to the Celtics. I actually thought the Lakers would win the series, but seeing the C's crowned as NBA champs was easier to swallow. I can't help but like Garnett, Pierce and Allen, and seeing those guys finally get a ring was sweet. As for the Lakers, Kobe and Fisher already have the hardware, and their teammates have plenty of time to get some.

2) I'm happiest of all for PJ Brown. He's one of the classiest players us Hornets fans have ever had the pleasure of rooting for. Best of all was that he didn't just latch on with the C's and ride coattails to get the first championship of his 15-year career. No, he made some huge contributions for Boston throughout the playoffs, and averaged almost 20 minutes per game in the Finals. He brought defense, rebounding and he frustrated the hell out of Pau Gasol every damn game.

3) With PJ coming up big for the Celtics, you can't help but wonder how far the Hornets could have gone if dude had instead signed with the team closest to his hometown of Slidell. I definitely think he would have put us over the top against the Spurs.

But then, could we have beat the Lakers in the Conference Finals? I would have said "no" before seeing LA get demolished by Boston these past two weeks. I know the Hornets aren't quite on the same level as the Celtics, but as ESPN's Mark Jackson commented during Game 5 on Sunday, the Lakers were getting crucified trying to defend the pick and roll, and the Hornets were perhaps the best pick and roll team in the League this past season.

Makes you think.

4) More than anything this morning, I wanted to hear what Kobe had to say after last night's game. His teammates really let him down in the Finals, and I was interested to see if he would criticize them in the media, or if he would take the high road instead. So far it looks like he's doing the latter, which is the smart move on his part. The Lakers have a great young team and they should have many more chances to win it all. They might lose a couple of pieces over the summer (Vujacic and Turiaf), but with Bynum back next season, Kobe carrying an extra chip on his shoulder, and more time for Gasol to fit in and learn the triangle, LA will be tough to beat.

5) Watching the Celtics fans at the Garden celebrate last night, I was thinking how that could be us Hornets fans at the Arena next season. It's not that hard to believe.

6) So, how many years do Boston have left with this group? How big is the window? They've got everyone back next year (except maybe Posey, who has a player option, and likely retirees Brown and Cassell), but they're not exactly a young team. How long before experience becomes old age and the C's go back to sucking?

I guess I just want to know if we can beat them in the Finals next season.

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