Time for Clippers to finish it

Chris Paul, the unquestioned leader of the Los Angeles Clippers. Photo Credit: Tiffany Zablosky/News4usonline.com
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Chris Paul, the unquestioned leader of the Los Angeles Clippers. Photo Credit: Tiffany Zablosky/News4usonline.com

Game 7. This is grown folks’ business. This is where guts and glory come into play. There’s something about a Game 7 that makes you tune in. Maybe it’s the unfolding drama that comes with a series-deciding game. Maybe it’s seeing the joy of  celebration of a team climbing through and over mountainous obstacles they’ve encountered throughout the struggle, ups and downs that come with a seven-game series that keeps us glued to our TVs.

Could it be that we’ve become addicted to the heartbreak reality that only one competitor will be left standing victorious, while the other combatant wander around in disbelief knowing that their dreams and aspiration of being a champion has been unapologetically washed away?

Welcome to the NBA playoffs. Lose and go home. Win and you get more glory.

The NBA Western Conference first round playoff series between the Los Angeles Clippers and San Antonio Spurs has not been for the faint of heart. This is not child’s play. No, you have better have brought your big boy pants with you for this series.

And the way it has played out through six games already, you would have thought the two teams were playing in the NBA Finals. Fortunately for the NBA and its legion of fans, the Clippers and Spurs series is just the appetizer of what is to come.

And that’s great news for the league. There’s a lot of commotion going on all around the sports hemsisphere with the 2015 NFL Draft in place, boxing stirring the pot for attention with the Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao fight, and the horses and jockeys participating in the 141st version of the Kentucky Derby being asked to ride into our hearts again.

But thanks to the hardware war going on between the Clippers and the Spurs, the NBA is in pretty good shape in getting the attention of sports fans everywhere. You might be taking a stroll through Downtown Disney, and the you’ll find the NBA  playing out in full color throughout the place in restaurants like the ESPNZone as people drop by to get something to eat, and by the way, watch the  big screen television sets to catch NBA action.

Blake Griffin has been  a point of emphasis for the Spurs' defense throughout the series. Photo Credit: Tiffany Zablosky/News4usonlin,com
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Blake Griffin has been a point of emphasis for the Spurs’ defense throughout the series. Photo Credit: Tiffany Zablosky/News4usonlin,com

So far it has been mesmerizing. The barnburner going on between Clippers-Spurs has especially been made-for-TV watch. Who would have expected the defending world champions Spurs blow a close out game in Game 6 on their own home court? Then again, who would have expected the Clippers to drop two close, winnable games at Staples Center themselves? The unpredictability of this series has made it an all-timer.

Why? Well, you have the experienced-savvy and five-time NBA champions Spurs trying to roll the more superior-talented Clippers out of the postseason early. And you have the Clippers, who are tired of bumping their heads up against wall of being denied of taking the next step towards playoff success. Beating the Spurs in Game 7 to close out out a tough, physical series, would be a mental uplift for the Clippers and their aspirations to make a serious run for the championship.

Even though this is just the first round,  this is the moment that guard Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and the rest of the Clippers have been waiting for. This series could be the sink or swim test for Doc Rivers’ team. This would be the time to emphatically nail down the end of the Spurs’ Western Conference reign of dominance and give Tim Duncan an unpleasant retirement party. It’s time for the Clippers to end this seven-game dance-their way.

The Clippers don’t need any more lessons about playing playoff basketball the right way. They don’t want to answer more questions about going through “the process” in order to win a title. The Clippers have already been there and done that. Whether it’s the Spurs or the Memphis Grizzlies or the Golden State Warriors or the Houston Rockets, the journey to the NBA title will not be a walk in the park. It’s not supposed to be.

The difference this year with the Clippers is that they are a lot more mentally ready to meet that challenge. Beating the Spurs in Game 7 will go a long way in cementing that argument.

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