So as difficult as it is to say this, it is obvious and unavoidable. The lakers were absolutely destroyed by a better Celtic team. It was 3 all-stars vs. 1 all-star and the score represented every bit the disparity one would expect in a mach up of this kind. I am passionately in love with my Lakers and I tell people everyday that Kobe is the most important person in my life, but this series gave me hope. I didn't gain hope for the Lakers. I already hold plenty of that. Instead I gained a tremendous amount of hope for UCLA basketball.
If there was any doubt that Howland basketball could win championships the Celtics should have erased that. Playing a dominant offensive team with long athletic players, the Celtics locked down and committed to shutting off the flood of points the Lakers had been pouring onto their opponents in the playoffs. They proved that one great player can be slowed down and defeated when playing together efficiently and with focus. Flash doesn't have to beat grit. The Celtics beat the Lakers playing the kind of ball our great Coach Howland preaches everyday, slow down, tough nosed, efficient, focused, defensive oriented basketball. I hate the Celtics, but watching the Lakers beautiful offense turn to slop at the hands of the Celts D was so much like tournament games we've watched over the past 3 years I couldn't help but feel hope. It was a familiar sight... just in the wrong colors.
If any doubters remain, they are now but fools. Ben ball IS a championship style of play. The titles will come.
"Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard"