Rose, Love, Lakers, and some buzzer beaters

Is there anything more exciting in all of sports than a game winning buzzer beater in basketball? Walk off homer in the 9th surely competes, as with any late/game changing 80+ yard play in the NFL. And an argument could be made for penalty kicks in soccer or the NHL.

But buzzer beaters are just so utterly dramatic. The shot clock winding down… a single player with the game on the line… the ball leaving his hands to the deafening sound of the buzzer… and the image of the ball connecting in the hoop against the neon-red outline of the game clock on the backboard.

Can’t beat it.

-Today’s ESPN Top Ten had some thrilling highlights. But D Rose’s buzzer beater vs. the Bucks last night was simply brilliant.

His confidence, poise, and natural killer instincts seem to sharpen by the day. The NBA is a league dominated by amazing point guards; miles ahead of any other position. It is very, very, very, very difficult to establish a current top five PG list. Paul, Williams, Rando, Westbrook, Nash, Nelson (just kidding) all could be arranged in any order from 1-5 and an argument could be made for any of them to be at the top.

But Derreck Rose is playing just flat out ridiculous. And has been for a while.

– I’m sure you’ve heard/read/saw that Kevin Love won the three point competition over All Star Weekend in Orlando. What you may hear less of is just how dominant of a player this guy really is.

Kevin Love is the most underrated player in the NBA. He is averaging 25 points, 14 rebounds and a steal a game. Love contributed 29 points on 9/17 shooting and grabbed 16 rebounds in their 106-94 victory over the Trailblazers last night. With 21 victories they are halfway through a shortened season and have already won four more games than all of last year. They are currently holding the eighth seed in the Wester Conference, and are a young, explosive side that no team wants to see in the playoffs.

It’s more than just the stats, as much it is about his ability to stretch the court as he is an offensive threat from the interior just as much as the perimeter.  Plus he’s dependable night in and night out. The kid always comes to play.

– So much for theory that the victory over Miami on Sunday was supposed to be a turning point for the Lakers’ season. After dominating the Heat, Kobe and crew have lost their last two games to the Pistons and Wizards. The combined victories of the two teams was 21 games compared to the Lakers 22 wins.

Questions over Mike Brown’s coaching abilities have inevitably come into question, as he questioned Kobe’s offensive decision making late in the game. Brown has done a fabulous job of coaching the Lakers this season, but can only go so far with a team that seems flat-out uninspired at times. How else could you rationalize blowing a 21 point lead against the third worse team in the league.

L.A. needs a trade. Desperately.

As for Kobe’s shooting in the fourth. His selection was a little iffy, and he went cold at all the wrong times. But Kobe has proven himself to be one of, if not THE most clutch player in the history of the league. He is not a big man, he does not play near the rim. He is a shooter. And shooter’s go cold sometimes. It happens.

Sometimes, the opposite happens and you can’t seem to miss.

This one still stings for me. I was watching this game with my roommate and die hard Laker fan. The second Kobe had the ball I had a feeling he would take a three to bury the game. My roommate cheered in ecstasy. I wept in disbelief.

Ugly shot, yes. Lucky shot, yes.

But exciting and utterly dramatic.

Can’t beat it.