Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Watching the 1984 NBA Championship in 2011

OK, I finally found one good thing about the NBA lockout. The local sports station that owns the TV rights to Boston Celtics' games now had to scramble around to fill in the holes created by the Celtics not actually playing any games.  Tonight, the space filler includes the the Classic Game 7 of the Celtics-Lakers 1984 NBA Championship featuring Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, Magic Johnson and the venerable Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.  Not quite Rajon Rondo and Kevin Garnett.  But C seemed excited when he came downstairs to watch the game with me.  Join us as we dissect this game.

"They are wearing girlie shorts, shorty shorts!" C chuckles.  "Why are they wearing such shortie shorts, Dad?"  I change the subject as I don't have an adequate explanation. 

I'm not sure what this is all about
Luckily, in the next moment, Larry Bird comes off the bench back into game.  "Hey that's Larry Bird!!"  C is legitimately excited.  I regale him with stories of Bird's magic - the Dominique game, the 60 point game, etc.  "Larry Bird was the best player ever, wasn't he?"  Why yes, he was.

"And is that Magic Johnson...and Kareem Abdul Jabbar.  The Lakers were awesome!  You can't stop the Sky Hook unless you triple team him."  Cam yells as Jabbar scores over Robert Parish with a four foot skyhook.  Hey buddy who are you rooting for - the Celtics or the Lakers?

We then begin to compare Hall of Famers on the teams.  (And no, not the Hall of Fame hair that McHale, Scott Wedman and Danny Ainge had).  The Celtics had Larry Bird, Robert Parish, Kevin McHale and Dennis Johnson.  The Lakers countered with Magic Johnson, Jabbar, James Worthy and Bob McAdoo.

After a hard foul by Kurt Rambis, we both have a nice chuckle as Tommy Heinsohn discusses the "No lay up rule." A double foul and a three for two foul rule?  Even on national TV Tommy could not be less impartial.  No Tommy point for him.  Dick Stockton earns one though for not laughing at Heinsohn after that ridiculous sequence.  That sequence demonstrates that the quality of basketball back int eh 1980's was much more exciting.  In fact both teams scored at least 100 points in all 7 games.  Seeing the fast breaks up and down the court, I can see why.  Maybe Tommy was just getting confused or something?

After G comes downstairs, we have to start all over again.  yes that Larry Bird.  Yes this is from 1984.  "Is this 1823?"  G asks me.

"No it's 1984" I answer, wondering if he was even listening to my answers to his questions. 

"So who wins Dad?  I'm waiting for him to remember what I said earlier when I turned this show on.  "Just keep watching, the game's almost over." I actually answer.

And as the game ends I keep rewinding the end to show the boys Larry Bird throwing a couple of haymakers trying to get off the Court as the crowd storms the Court.  This is a funny sequence as CBS alternates between Lakers guys dejectedly going the wrong way toward the Celtics locker room as they enter the clubhouse and this ugly dude with his shirt off, wearing cut off shorts and standing on the rim like a jackass celebrating with a couple of women with enormous hair. 

Man I love the 1980's...or the 1820's as G would have you believe.

photo courtesy of ioffer.com

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