This has been a weird Finals for me. It started with the frustration of watching both Tyler Herro and Duncan Robinson shoot like 10% from three and miss almost every wide open look they had especially after what happened in the Eastern Conference Finals. But that's life. As someone who has spent pretty much every waking moment of my life despising the Los Angeles Lakers, it hasn't really bothered me all that much that they are on the brink of winning the NBA title. I thought it would. It bothered me way more in 2009 when they went up against the Magic and of course I'm still recovering from Game 7 in 2010. Fucking Ron Artest.
For some reason though, I've mostly been indifferent about this Finals. After thinking about it during these last two off days I think it comes down to one thing. Rajon Rondo.
I will always love Rajon Rondo. He's the best pure point guard I've ever seen lace em up for the Boston Celtics in my lifetime. I will go to my grave truly believing that Playoff Rondo is one of the best players to ever walk this earth. What he did both in 2008 and really his entire Celtics career will stay with me until my last breath. It's why I didn't even care when he was tearing the Celtics a new asshole during that Celtics/Bulls series a few years ago (which the Celts prob lose if Rondo doesn't get hurt). So the fact that he's on the brink of winning his second ring 10 years after the Lakers stole a ring from him is doing weird things to my brain. I'm happy for him, but also hate everything about it.
There's also the Avery Bradley factor, but that's sort of been out of sight out of mind. I'll always have love Avery too.
I can't imagine I'm the only Celts fan that feels this way either. I'm so used to despising every single player on the Lakers roster but I can't bring myself to do it with Rondo. This honestly has been an issue ever since Rondo first ripped our hearts out at the Garden last year
I was heartbroken, but at the same time loved seeing Rondo make the first game winner of his career. The whole thing has been a disaster.
It would be one thing if Rondo barely played and didn't even factor into this Lakers run. But the reality is its been the exact opposite. He's been huge for the Lakers during this climb up the mountain. I'd go so far to say they don't win this title without him. That's pretty wild if you consider many declared Rondo was washed given how his previous stops ended. For Rondo guys like myself, I think that's why I'm mostly happy for him. It feels weird. It feels dirty and wrong on about a billion levles, but its been awesome to see him make a real impact all these years later.
Am I spinzoning a little bit in an effort to block out Lakers Twitter and how insufferable they'll be if they win tonight? Partly. But if you told me in 2008 that one of the best point guards in franchise history would one day be a huge part of a Lakers title in 12 years, I'm not sure I would have believed you.
At the end of the day, I'm just going to have to separate the two. It's the only way. That and just rewatch this video a billion times while I avoid Twitter like the plague if the Lakers close it out tonight.