Although Miami is off to a 2-0 lead in the series, and Boston has their backs against the ropes, their is no denying that the Eastern Conference Finals have had a lot to offer for basketball fans. In particular, one player from each team has really stepped up and performed at a level that people may not have expected. Here are two questions I have after the first two games:
Has “The King” found his crown?
It’s hard to imagine a three-time league MVP would have much to prove to anybody, but LeBron’s past playoff performances have had King James haters out in full force. After essentially disappearing during last year’s Finals, many wondered if LeBron had that “X” factor to be the truly legendary player that we all know he is capable of being.
If the first two games of this series are any indication, LeBron appears to be ready to make that leap to the pantheon of basketball greatness. The King followed up a 32 point performance in Game 1 with a 34 point performance in Game 2, adding 7 assists to that total along the way. Beyond his numbers, LeBron played with a distinct confidence and intensity that has been missing in previous playoff displays. Should he be able to keep his play at this newly elevated level, the Heat might just be on their way to the first of those seven championships that ‘Bron promised us two years ago.
Is Rajon Rondo the best PG in basketball?
44 points, 10 assists, and 8 rebounds, while playing all 53 minutes of an overtime game. Besides Rajon Rondo, the only other player to put up those numbers in a playoff game is… nobody. Yes, Rajon Rondo had one of the greatest individual performances in NBA Playoff history, and his team still lost.
His latest heroics have brought Rondo’s playoff averages to a remarkable 17 points, 12 assists, 7 rebounds, and 3 steals per game. By comparison, his counterpart on the red hot San Antonio Spurs, Tony Parker, is averaging 21, 7, 4, and 1 during this postseason. Although those numbers may seem close in comparison, consider that Tony Parker is elite company for any player, and Rondo is still distinctly outperforming him.
Unfortunately, Rondo’s supporting cast does not appear to have enough left to lift him to the game’s greatest stage: the NBA Championship. As a result, one of the greatest playoff performances by any player may be somewhat forgotten. That being said, there is no ignoring what Rondo has shown during these playoffs, and if he is able to continue playing at this level, Rajon Rondo might soon have the claim to the title of NBA’s best point guard.
And who knows, if Rondo can dig deep and pull out a few more games like what he did last night, the Celtics might not be finished after all.
Is LeBron finally on his way to G.O.A.T. status? Is Rondo the best PG in the game? Let's hear your thoughts!