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Bob Lobel: Why Can’t Garnett and Rondo Lose With Class?

Wednesday, June 13, 2012


Bob Lobel, Sports Legend

It's emotionally difficult for me to bash the Celtics for losing game seven to Miami when they so closely resembled last year's Bruins squad that pulled off surprise win after surprise win.

Most of the so-called experts predicted it would be over in five games tops, even I was guilty on that front. I gave way too much credit to the Heat and far too little to the Celtics. Boston was a team of substance and Miami was one of sizzle. Unfortunately, the sizzle won out in the end.

My only problem is with the churlish behavior of Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo. Two of Boston's best players chose to head to the locker room without stopping to congratulate a player that made them into the legends they think they are. Without the competition and passion that LeBron James has provided in the playoffs over the years, this Boston team shrinks into the losers Rondo and Garnett showed themselves to be after the game.

It really bothered me that neither showed the class to simply shake the hands of the Miami Heat. Did they feel they were cheated? Do they not get paid if they lose? The two of them may have played like Celtics, but they sure didn't act like it. Guys like Doc Rivers, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen all stayed and did the right thing.

Kevin Garnett played with heart, but needs to learn to lose with class.

Oh, and as for the "Big Three," only Pierce should even be considered to have his number raised into the rafters. Please don't tell me that Garnett or Allen deserve that honor. They were very good and brought a title to Boston, but they both just weren't here long enough.

Also, I have to say that I get more emails complaining that the NBA is fixed than anything else. People all really seem to believe that the league manipulates things to get to revenue-producing game sevens. Even my wife asked me before Boston's last game if the league had fixed the series so that it would go that far.

I must confess, I just don't know anymore.

Moving on to a more pleasant conversation, I had the opportunity to go to Fenway Park and sit where Sherm Feller and Carl Beane each sat to do what they did last Wednesday. It was an unbelievable thrill and, as I told the Red Sox people that made it possible, I felt like a kid again. I've had many thrilling moments, and this was definitely in the top-five.

Will I get another opportunity? I hope so.

On to Tim Thomas' apparent exit from the Boston Bruins. I say let him go. Just thank him for what he did and let him go. Without him, that team doesn't go to the White House (with or without him), there is no parade, and no traveling with Lord Stanley's Cup. During the Bruins' amazing run last year, he outperformed athletes named Brady and Gronkowski, though he may not have been as well paid.

Now, he's burned out. Too many meaningless regular season games and too much pressure to carry the team on his back. So thanks Tim, and good luck.

Finally, the sports world is being shaken by two high-profile trials this week. The Jerry Sandusky trial just began, and we may be nearing the end of the Roger Clemens trial. The former is guilty in my mind before any proof is brought forth in trial, and the latter is not worthy of being convicted of anything.


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