7 Not Really Possible Scenarios for Tonight’s Game 7
1) We get a repeat of game 6, and LeBron and Co. head into the finals with some momentum and confidence—err—like they did last year…It’s what everyone wants, right? Well, at least according to NBA.com. WRONG! That screenshot and subsequent article is so laughable, it’s hard to laugh. LeBron may—or may not—go off, but I’d guess the vast majority of casual fans would rather see the Heat falter in a game 7 at home, as the presumptive favorites. That way OKC—again as the presumptive favorites—can take the title 90% of the writers are hoping for, and Jay Kaspian Kang’s “Leap” article will achieve prenominate brilliance. But more likely, LeBron will be lauded as finally having gotten “it,” without the “it” really being explained in any sort of objective way, which is fine and nice for prosaic columns from Le Batard and the like, but makes the LeBron discussion that much more infuriating for some of us. Also, Wade would need to have another shitty game for this to come to fruition, and if Wade and the rest of the Heat are struggling, which is why LeBron would have to come out uber-aggressive again, then they have a very limited chance in the Finals anyway. OK, this scenario is bothering me enough for these ad hominem tangents without any real creativity, so lets just move on.
2) The Celtics come out and use the Heat’s internalized pressure from a game 7 at home, to eviscerate them in the 1st half. The Heat play catch-up in the second half and as the game comes to its conclusion the Heat are struggling to make shots, so they get even more scared that this superstar-laden experiment is over. Wade and James falter down the stretch with so much pressure and so little help: the rest of their teammates can’t pick up the slack since there hasn’t really been any slack this season. The Heat lose by something like 8, and everyone in Miami has already left arena. So when LeBron performs seppuku, only a handful of beat writers are there to witness it. Ira Winderman and Shandel Richardson try and revive the comatose LeBron at center court, but it’s too late and he bleeds out. Wade shakes his head grimly as he stands over LeBron’s prostrate body. He then gives Gabrielle a really rough kiss to symbolize his love of life and his decision to remain living. LeBron’s suicide becomes a referendum on the media and Twitter crashes for the second time this weekend (the first being when the Heat lose). Fingers are pointed, and Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo have to answer questions about LeBron’s mindset, when all they really want to do is talk about the game and their excellent play. The NBA Finals are put on hold as David Stern prepares a eulogy for LeBron’s funeral; except, LeBron’s fiance and his kids rush up to Stern and start punching him in the body and legs and Stern, finally loses it and also performs seppuku. Lets move on before this gets any more like a shitty Palahniuk novella after he spent an absinthe-laden week in Japan.
3) The Celtics and Heat forget how to play defense and both squads shoot an astronomical 65% or better from the floor in the first 3 quarters with the Celtics taking a big lead. As they’re entering the 4th, Rondo has 25 assists and the score is 121-100, Boston. All of a sudden the Heat’s rangy, athletic small-ball lineup (‘Bron at 5, Chalmers at 4, Battier at 3, Wade and Chalmers at the guard spots) start intercepting passes and the Celtics lose their offensive identity because Rajon Rondo’s arm is cut and he has to go to the sidelines to get stitched up. As the Celtics trainers are rushing the stitches during the Heat comeback, they inadvertently puncture his wrist. Instead of blood spurting up in the face of the trainer, Rondo’s eyes glow Terminator red, and we learn that he’s actually a very advanced form of Artificial Intelligence sent back through time to stop LeBron on his quest for his first NBA Title. The machines that control the future know they will only take power so long as the Chosen One is denied his God-Given right to an NBA title. James Cameron finally watches his first basketball game, and David Stern calls the game in favor of Miami to save the human race from extermination. When Miami faces OKC in the next round, the officials award the Heat free throws for even the most minor contact (and who can blame them when the future of humanity rests on the Heat winning the title). Scott Brooks declares, after game 3, his intention to develop a Super Computer strong enough to take control of the world anyway—out of spite for Stern’s officiating corps. James Cameron buys the Bobcats from Jordan and immediately trades everything they have for Rondo and they escape together into the Rocky Mountains. They are never seen or heard from again until 2024, when it’s already too late for everyone and the machines take control despite LeBron’s title.
4) The Celtics and Heat both play hard and well, but Rondo gets into the lane so easily the Celtics are up at halftime by 10. In the second half, Dywane Wade slides under a jump-shooting Rondo and he lands on Wade’s right foot, twisting his left ankle into such a horrible angle, Joe Thiesmann—watching on TV—vomits onto his living room floor. Rondo shakes off the “sprain” with a cortisone shot and the most ridiculous tape job in training history, and returns to the court playing on one foot. Even on only his right foot, Rondo continues to dissect the Heat’s swarming defense to find Garnett for a series of oops to that puts the Celtics up by 23 to start the 4th. Exhausted and still ailing, Rondo finally returns to the bench, where his left foot promptly falls off. The Heat, relieved the Rondonator (sorry that’s scenario #3) is out, go on a huge 22-1 run, with a lone free throw from Paul Pierce. There’s 10 seconds left and the Heat are down 2. LeBron makes a 3 to give the Heat the lead and the American Airlines arena reaches a fevered frenzy where fans turn into satyrs (with ‘Bron as their Dionysus) and start grotesquely copulating in the aisles, not realizing that Rondo has come back with a bloody bandage over the stump where his left foot used to be. With .5 seconds left Rondo launches the ball 89 feet (the Celtics were out of timeouts and couldn’t advance the ball) where it clangs off the front of the iron, goes 10 feet in the air, and then travels back cleanly through the net. The Celtics win. The Heat fans are so busy copulating during the impromptu bacchanal that’s broken out, they don’t realize the Celtics have won. Eventually, after most of the fans have exhausted their bodies in sexual gratification, they overhear what happened on a loudspeaker and riot police storm the arena and arrest everyone in site for public indecency. The Celtics move on, so lets move on.
5) The Celtics win as Wade misses a last second 3-point shot to win rather than pass to a wide-open LeBron alone under the basket.
6) The Heat win as Paul Pierce attempts a game-winning 3 as time is expiring only to see the “good job, good effort” kid storm the court and somehow rise up to the hoop and prevent the ball from falling through (like that GEICO commmercial). Replays show the shot would have missed anyway, so the Heat are again awarded a trip to the Finals. The people of Boston revolt, and a second civil war is ignited between NBA writers on Twitter that think the Heat should have advanced, and those Boston fans who thought the kid’s interference means they should have had a replay. There are no survivors in the NBA Twitter-Boston civil war, so Twitter actually turns into a fun, cynical-free place where fans cheer on their teams and lament their losses with a sentimentality most Americans thought had been expunged after the first English translations of the existential novels of Albert Camus. Bloggers are finally happy again, but the world ends just a year later by an invading horde of flying swine that breath fire from their anuses.
7) The Celtics and Heat battle for 6 overtimes. The game lasts 5 hours, and I miss the last 3 overtimes, since I’m going to the Sleep No More show in Manhattan tonight, and they won’t let me in after midnight. With me not watching, the Celtics win on a weird bounce at the end. Fans and commentators swear they see an ethereal specter with a pudgy build wearing a beige suit and smoking a cigar, tap the ball into the bucket. Bill Russell cackles uproariously after the game, and makes the sign of the cross. Suddenly blood shoots out of Russell’s wrists and everyone realizes it’s the Rapture and Russell is Jesus Christ. The NBA Finals are cancelled as Anti-Semitic Christian hordes (thinking it’s finally time) storm Stern’s house amid the chanting of Merchant of Venice lines they don’t understand. Stern is burned alive before Russell gets on a megaphone and informs all the Christians they were wrong, and after murdering Stern for his religious beliefs, they will not be spending eternity NOT in the plush environs of Heaven, but in the meaningless grips of Purgatorio (the Jewish people were right, in that Hell never existed). Shakespeare starts getting taught in more classrooms and atheists stop behaving like haughty assholes. Secularists still don’t place much faith in Russell, but when he levitates in the crowd at a David Blaine show in Vegas, they realize he really is the chosen one and we all live in religious and pastoral happiness afterwards.