I'm tempted to write a flowery, gushing lead-up about how it's been 20 years since Bostonians were this excited about basketball, about how there's an entire generation of young kids who will be able to watch a truly remarkable Celtics team for the first time in their lives, how somewhere Red Auerbach is even more psyched than we are. But hey, we've gotta save something for the season, right? Let's savor tonight. This feeling we have right now doesn't come along that often.
I feel I should say a few words about what's transpired around the league the first few nights. A lot of the time early-season activity isn't indicative of a whole lot. Remember a few years ago, when Flip Murray looked like the second coming of Iverson for a month or two? How'd that work out? Still, there are a few noteworthy developments which you might want to keep your eye on.
- Kevin Durant has quite the green light. We sort of predicted this, but in his first two games the youngster's hoisted 22 and 23 shots, respectively. In his first game he only hit seven, but in his second he hit eleven and scored 27 points. He also shot a total of eight free throws in the two games... once he figures out how to get to the line it'll be insane. In the meantime, 27 points in your second NBA game ain't bad, even if he was less than efficient about it.
- The Rockets look very good. In their first two games Houston has beaten the Lakers and the Jazz. Last night McGrady dropped 47, and after two games he's averaging 38.5ppg. Not saying he'll keep that up, but if they can finally figure out a way to keep T-Mac and Yao healthy, well, my goodness.
- What's up with the Spurs? Granted, they're 2-0, but their two wins were over Portland and Memphis, and the two Western Conference cellar-dwellers kept the games remarkably close (Portland lost by nine, but I watched a handful of that game and it was often closer much tighter). Something tells me the Spurs will figure out a way to pull it together, but most people would have expected one or both of these games to be blowouts.
- No, I have nothing to say about the Eastern Conference. Nobody has played more than one game and there haven't been any real surprises. Orlando looks good but I've been harping on that for months.