Thursday, May 29, 2008

G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All Time) - NBA Playoff Fouls

You’ll quickly be able to tell that I am a child of the 80s when it comes to sports (and everything else I guess). Since I was born in 1976, anything that happened before Magic and Larry got to the NBA isn’t on my radar. With that in mind, and the fact that we have Detroit vs Boston in the East finals (hopefully followed by L.A. vs Boston), I started to reminisce about the "golden years" of the NBA and what a real foul looked like. Nowadays it seems there is a foul called on every possession. The free throws and constant stoppages in play take so much of the flow and fun out of the game. Back in my day a foul was a foul (said in the voice of Grandpa Simpson). And the tradition was passed down like a passing of the torch: Philly vs Boston, Boston vs Detroit, Detroit vs Chicago, Chicago vs New York, New York vs Miami, with the Lakers thrown in along the way to represent the West. Some of the best fouls, and subsequent fights, came from these vicious series. Some examples:

Lakers vs Celtics (the McHale clothesline):

Nowadays, such an infraction will net you an ejection and at least one game off:

Celtics vs Pistons (particularly the third shot with Parrish clubbing Laimbeer over the head):

I think my favorite part of that one is that if you will remember, Parrish wasn’t even called for a foul and actually shot free throws as a result of the play! Makes you wonder how anyone ever won in the Garden...

No comments: