Last night's game was the "go big or go home" game of the series.
Boston didn't come up big at all.
The pressure had seemingly turned onto the Lakers after losing two games in Boston. The Lakers came into the Staples Center down 3-2 and the momentum was definitely on Boston's side.
Kobe losing trust in his team hadn't helped either.
It seemed as though Boston was going to win yet another championship against Kobe and the Lakers. Everyone expected a battle to the death at the Staples Center, but we obviously didn't get what we expected.
This win meant much more than a simple avoidance of elimination, it was in essence the series. The Lakers came out sharp and they ended flawlessly—they led the whole game and at one point they were up 27 points.
If I were Boston, I would be very discouraged and scared for my life; they just lost the biggest game in the series.
I mean they had the Lakers right where they wanted them; leading 3-2 in the series with momentum heading into the Laker's home court, where most teams play poorly just after losing on the opponent's court.
Don't count out Boston though.
They will come out with a sense of urgency and fury; Boston knows that if they do not come out sharp and ready to go, the Lakers will take home the 2010 NBA Championship trophy.
Expect both teams to come out with fire and a lot of pride.
Let me explain why this game was so important to both teams though:
Imagine being the underdog throughout the playoffs. You are constantly being overlooked and disregarded. As the playoffs progress, you kept improving your play and eventually you reach the finals, just to arrive in your enemy's home.
There, you unexpectedly come out and take a 3-2 lead heading into LA, without even being supposed to make it out of the East to begin with.
This is exactly what Boston did—because they continued their success against the Lakers, all the pressure was on the Lakers heading back home to game 6.
Like I said before, the Celtics had the Lakers exactly where they wanted.
The Celtics had cornered the Lakers into a green room filled with clovers; when an opposing team returns homes after losing on the opponent's floor, playing at home is one of the most difficult things to do.
This is why Boston had a golden opportunity to finish this series off.
The Lakers, on the other hand, went into "red alert" and were just trying to drag on this brutal series, because they knew that if this series went to seven games, luck was on their side.
In game six, one could tell that the Lakers came out of the locker room ready to win; Ron Artest was making shots, Lamar Odom was being aggressive, Sasha Vujacic was hitting threes, (excluding his two dreadful air balls), and we all know Kobe did what he needed to do to win.
The Celtics were short handed right off the bat losing Kendrick Perkins to a knee injury with five minuets left in the first quarter. This obviously hurt the Celtics as throughout the game, Doc Rivers had to scramble lineups just to stay in the game.
But it was no match for the "red alert" Lakers—there was no chance for the Celtics to win.
With a couple minuets left in the game, all Doc Rivers could do was prepare for game seven and try to forget what just happened.
Heading into game seven, the pressure is all on Boston now. They aren't 100 percent and they're missing a key post player by the name of Perkins. There is no doubt in anybody's mind that the Celtic players are all discouraged.
All the Lakers have to do to seal the series is show up sharp and end smart.
If the Lakers can play close to how they played last night, this series is over.
But once again, Bynum must be ready to go and must be ready to be efficient with his time. With no Kendrick Perkin's, Bynum is once again the key to the game.
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