It's not whether you have the best player on the planet running your team, not about having a coach with nine rings, and certainly not about winning games with an all-around individual performance.
With their 131-92 clinching victory in Game Six of the NBA Finals Tuesday, the Boston Celtics have taught the world a lesson, inimitably disclosed by the most extraordinary franchise the NBA has witnessed in quite some time.
It's a tale of heroes, of rags to riches, rivalries, KOBE and PIERCE, GARNETT and GASOL, but, most importantly, it's a tale of peerless success, inexplicably represented by the newly crowned NBA champions. Never in my short NBA fan career have I witnessed a Finals with this intensity, respect, and utter dedication.
One aspect I learned from this awe-inspiring NBA Finals was contained in one word: UNITY. It seems as though people have neglected the true meaning of sports. We have all observed the fate of teams that rely solely on one player, even if perceived to be the best in the world.
Coming into this series, all NBA analysts, starting from the most experienced right down to the least, picked the stunning Lakers to put the Celtics away in six games. To be honest, I did, too, due to the fact that they have the "Black Mamba," Kobe Bryant. But the tide turned, didn't it?
The emotion, the roar of the crowd, the anger, excitement, and perseverance were finally all confined into the Larry O'Brien trophy. It's a belief, I tell you.
When all NBA experts outweigh your potential for the sake of one player on the opposing team, it signifies the strength of the most successful dynasty in all of sports.
To tell you the truth, I am a Kobe fanatic and a Celtics hater. But as I witnessed one of the most lopsided games in NBA Finals history, I could do nothing but let my jaw drop and accept I was mistaken.
Up 23 at halftime and later up 36, it didn't mean a thing to the champions. They were hungry for more, far more dissatisfied with every basket the Lakers scored. It was a blowout lesson for all NBA teams, including a life lesson for the Black Mamba.
After the third quarter, Boston coach Doc Rivers was interviewed by Michelle Tafoya. He said, "It's all about defense. We've done it three quarters now, and I want to do it for one more quarter!"
Kevin Garnett yelled at the top of his loungs, "IMPOSSIBLE IS NOTHING."
Ray Allen said, "It's all about the team."
Paul Pierce said "teammates" every other word during the postgame interview with Stuart Scott.
Mark Jackson said (paraphrasing), "I talked with Doc Rivers before this series and I told him I'm going for the Lakers. Would you, if you were in my seat? He answered back and told me NO, I'll go for the Celtics because of their defense!"
I will not say KG, Paul Pierce, Ray Allen or even the Big Three, I will say the Boston Celtics.
The Boston Celtics, you have convinced the world that, "Some dreams fade over time, BUT NOT THIS ONE."