It's been a while.
It's been a lot of vodka shots...
But for some reason, it's still hard to believe the all-mighty empire that us Lakeshow faithful so strongly believed in fell apart in 8 surreal days. I still find myself hoping that this is just some sick divine joke and someone will spring out of nowhere and say, "Psyche!" But no, the king is indeed dead, and all is indeed lost in the City of Angels.
I haven't watched a basketball game since Game 4. It's hard to watch anything basketball related and not think of this tragedy of epic proportions.
I'll leave the
blaming analysis to the pros here. I'm just trying to find some decent closure for this bullshit season, and I hope this is a worthy eulogy.
This season has always been shaky. Sure, they were still the most talented bunch in the Association. Sure, Kobe is still el loco diablo with a basketball. But this group had some serious mentality issues. No championship contenders go on lengthy losing streaks like them (to teams they have no business losing to), but we all knew the plot in this fairytale. We knew that Phil Jackson will win his 12th ring, piss on Red's grave, and ride into the sunset. We knew that Kobe will match MJ in the bling category and seriously start a convo on GOAT. We knew that this is the year that we catch up to Celtic's banner count and watch their AARP core kneel before Father Time.
Then the fairytale that all of us (perhaps even the players) believed in started falling apart. It happened so fast, so furiously, and so silently. Once the fairytale curtains fell, we were no longer the defending champions, we were no longer in the chase to tie the Celtics. Kobe wouldn't get his 6th ring, at least not this year. And the Master of Winning got swept into retirement. All the LAL message boards were flooded with picture of FAIL and FACEPALM.
And that's the pathetic reality that all of us will have to live with for the rest of our lives as Laker fans..
How would we describe how we collectively feel? Disappointment, anger, shock, disgust, heartbreak, shame, depressing, OMGWTF... the list goes on and on, and all of this negative emotion led to the outbreak of stupid trade ideas like zits right before prom. It's a long list, but please allow me to add one more to this list:
Forgive them for their arrogance. Forgive them for their mental meltdown. Forgive them for royally screwing PJ over. Forgive them for failing and facepalming. Forgive them for being human.
Pulling sayings out of the cliche hat, I declare that our championship window is still open, that this core, after ALL of them see Ron's psychologist, is still the best team around. I say that with enough veteran rest and mental revival, they can still push it next year. And I defy anyone to find a trade that could get us a better core than what we have now.
After all, we owe them at least a chance at redemption right?
We don't judge a man by how many times he fell from grace, or how hard he fell. We judge a man by how many times he summons the courage to get back up. One fuck-up, no matter how colossal, doesn't get to define a career, and this shouldn't either.
Shit happens, even to Laker fans, who are the luckiest fans in the world. We don't have to wait 50+ years to end the championship drought. We don't have to wait for Donald Sterling to return to his home in the Seven Circles of Hell to even get a shot at winning. We don't hope for good lottery every season, only to see them flame out in a losing culture. Other fans pray to see their team in the playoffs, we expect a parade in June every year. We're too spoiled for our goddamn good, and I guess a piece of the humble pie is good for us all.
So here's to our fallen heroes, and all their facepalming flaws. And here's to next season, and its warm promise of a second chance, and an opportunity at glorious redemption.
Purp and Gold all day mofos!