I had an awful nightmare last night. It was truly disturbing. It was as if everything I had ever loved was suddenly stolen away. Imagine your hopes and dreams were built up over months and months. Everything going perfectly, better than any well-laid plan could go. And then, without warming, it was abruptly taken away. That was my nightmare.
I saw the Celtics, a team who seemed destined for a rematch in the finals with the hated Lakers, lose in the first round to a New York Knick team which had not seen the postseason in nine years.
And then I saw the Red Sox. I saw a team that nearly every ESPN analyst had reaching the World Series; completely implode. I saw a team that added All-Stars Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford and Bobby Jenks, not even make the playoffs.
This is my nightmare.
Now hopefully it will remain just that… a nightmare. Hopefully the Celtics will go into that old “sixth gear” they showed back in 2008. Hopefully Tim Thomas and the Bruins can completely stone the competition and do something that not even Ray Borque could do in a B’s sweater. Hopefully the Red Sox look nothing like the team we have seen over the past week and a half.
I share all of this because I do believe in the “reverse-jinx.” If we have learned anything from Bill Simmons (aside from vague pop-culture tidbits), we should remember that the reverse-jinx exists and most of the time it does work.
This is why I must go over the things that go wrong in my nightmare.
First the Bruins.
Let’s be honest, when is the last time you thought a Bruins team was really going to make a trip to the Stanley Cup Finals. It’s tough to put faith in an aging goaltender and that is exactly what you must do.
Tim Thomas set an NHL record in Boston’s 3-1 win over Ottawa this past Saturday. Thomas now has a .938 save percentage on the season. That is the single best season mark ever. He managed 31 saves on 32 shots total. His season record improved to 35-11-9. There is little doubt he is a finalist for the Vezina Trophy.
All of this obviously means he is going to either a) get hurt in game one, or b) just completely stink out the joint.
The fact that the Bruins are going up against their hated rivals the Montreal Canadians and the fact that I actually like one of their players (P.K. Subban) just goes to show that the end must be near.
On to the Celtics.
A team that just a month and a half ago seemed poised to return to the NBA Finals and challenge the Lakers for a second-straight year, traded its toughness (Kendrick Perkins) for bench help, and has now slipped to the No. 3 seed in the East and has to get past Melo, Amar’e and the Knicks in the first round.
O, and by the way the Celtics have looked disinterested, off-kilter and generally awful since the trade and will have to win vs. the Knicks on the final day of the season just to get to .500 in the month of April.
Also, apparently we have to rely on Shaq to return to health in the playoffs or else we don’t stand a chance. When did this happen?
And lets not forget about those World Series Champion Red Sox.
O, they didn’t win the World Series?
They are six games under .500 to start the year?
Carl Crawford is batting .163?
The team has a .729 ERA?
This must be a nightmare.
Now some of you may be asking, “Mike, why didn’t you talk about the Patriots?”
Well don’t worry. The lockout is actually going to last three years, so we won’t have worry about the Pats choking yet again.
Unfortunately, this was not a dream, and yes Tom does cry a lot.