Fancap: Portland Paralyzed By Lakers’ Late Snake Attack

The best play of the game for me was Kobe’s next bucket, a classically difficult fall-away jumper over Brandon Roy to give the Lakers a 5 point lead with thirty seconds to play.  Kobe was fired up after hitting that shot, jumping around and jawing at fans, grabbing his jersey and generally acting like it was a do-or-die playoff game.  I can’t remember the last time I saw Kobe that emphatic and demonstrative! We’ll get a fist pump here and there, perhaps a flying airplane up the court, or more often that angry underbite, sticking his jaw out but keeping his body tense and coiled, ready to strike again.

I love that Kobe is still so passionate after 15 years in the league.  He has already accomplished more of his goals and dreams than most people do in their lifetime and still gets up against regular season opponents.  He wants to win all the time, be it a practice scrimmage or a game 7.

It sets the tone for the entire team as well; I hope it is as inspiring for the young guys as it is for me to see their leader with a fanatically crazy gleam in his eye during a regular season game.  I could watch that sequence of Kobe hitting my favorite of his shots and then popping his jersey all day. At this point, I couldn’t stop smiling.

Quick side note: one of my favorite songs is “More” by Usher.  The NBA used it as the theme song for All Star Weekend 2010 and he had a fantastic commercial interspersed with actual game footage and then Usher’s dancing inspired by said moves. It was sick.  In any case, I listed to this song religiously during the playoffs last year to pump me up. It is all about basketball, and the lyrics are clearing tailor-made for Kobe:

“Know y’all been patiently waiting, I know you need me, I can feel it,
I’m a beast, I’m an animal, I’m that monster in the mirror,
The headliner, finisher, I’m the closer, winner.
Best when under pressure with second’s left I show up.”

Next: The Clutch Captains

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