The Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Boston Celtics in Game 7 to win their 16th championship in franchise history. Kobe won his 5th title, and Phil Jackson won his 11th.
The Los Angeles Lakers won their 16th NBA championship in franchise history, defeating the Boston Celtics in a dramatic Game 7 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. An HLN analyst describes the intense matchup: “This was like a heavyweight bout in the 12th round with these two guys just going at it. They were both getting tired and more tired. In the end, the Lakers just had more youth.”
The Lakers were able to defeat the Celtics after a disappointing loss to them in the 2008 finals. Kobe Bryant was named Finals’ MVP for the second year in row and won his fifth NBA title. He didn’t have a great night from the field—shooting only six for 24—but was able to grab 15 boards. Luckily for the Lakers, Bryant was able to get some help from his teammates. Pau Gasol had 19 points and 18 rebounds on the night. An NBC Sports writer writes about Gasol’s performance: “This was an incredible performance from Gasol, who has probably shed his label as being ‘soft.’ He was anything but against a smothering Celtics’ defense and made some hard-earned shots and free throws down the stretch that helped the Lakers get the win.”
But the unsung hero of the night quite possibly was Queensbridge native Ron Artest. He came through with a magnificent performance to aid the Lakers in their quest for a second straight title. Artest had 20 points, five boards, and five steals. ESPN’s Earvin “Magic” Johnson praises Artest on his Game 7 performance: “When you think about all of the bad things that has happened to Ron Artest, and all of the things teams have said bad about him, he really came up big, and I thought he was the difference-maker tonight for the Lakers.
The Celtics led for most of the game, but were unable to pull it out down the stretch. Fox News interviewed NBA Hall of Famer Bill Walton who talked about the Celtics play in Game 7: “The Celtics, they had their chance, they played well enough to maybe get it done, but they ran out of gas. The home crowd— it wore the Celtics down and the Lakers just came back.”
The Celtics face an off-season of uncertainty, with many players eligable for free agency. The World Champion Lakers look to three-peat next year with the hopes of Phil Jackson returning for another season. If he returns, he will be going for his second three-peat with the Lakers, and his fourth overall, with the first two coming with Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls. So what do you think of the NBA Finals? Epic? Or not so much?
WRITER: Cordell Anderson
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