Thursday, April 27, 2006

Posterized?

posted by BH

From today's Daily Quickie on ESPN.com's Page 2:



Credit Steve Nash with two MVP awards this year. There's the traditional "Most Valuable Player." And then there's this:

"Most Viciously Posterized."

Oh my goodness: Kobe dunked on Nash so nasty last night with 3 minutes to go to put the Lakers up 9, you could feel Bryant's fury:

• At having lost MVP to Nash (you just know that was in the back of his mind).

• At shooting 7-for-21 in a personally humiliating Game 1 loss to the Suns.

• At inspiring his teammates to realize that they would win this game, shocking the Suns in Phoenix and tying their series 1-1.

The Dunk was a symbol for LA's surprisingly aggressive win, holding Phoenix to 34 pct 1st-half FG shooting that the Suns never really recovered from.

The only thing The Dunk didn't do was capture Kobe's restraint during the rest of the game:

Contrary to pregame theory that his shot count would explode, he shot only 24 times (making 12) and didn't carry the team as much as lead it.

Whether you love or loathe Kobe (or perhaps have an allergy to Nash winning that 2nd MVP), the move symbolized all that can be great about Kobe: Athleticism, will and, yes, I'll concede: leadership.

How does trying to take a charge under the basket mean you have been posterized? First of all, Steve Nash was so far under Bryant, there's no way even his head makes it into the shot. Secondly, every other posterized moment I've ever seen involved the dunk actually being contested. Nash was a chair, really. This isn't John Starks flying over the outstretched arms of Scottie Pippen and Horace Grant. This is Bryant dunking over a guy with both feet on the ground and both hands over his crotch. It wasn't Judas kissing Jesus. It doesn't mean anything. It doesn't symbolize anything. It was two exciting points in an unexpected win. When Kobe drove the baseline and saw Nash there, he wasn't thinking about MVP's, game 1, inspiring his teammates, or leadership. It was another moment in a season in which he posterized more than one guy, none of whom were MVP's. If I'm Steve Nash, I'll take the MVP. I'll give Kobe thirty more dunks over me if it means my team takes the series. Last night, Nash scored 29, just like Bryant, yet the dunk is what people are talking about as a big "up yours" from Kobe to Nash? Seriously?

2 comments:

sondog said...

Did you hear that he's changing to #24 next year?

bh said...

Think it might have to do with jersey sales?