The ABCs of winning basketball
Alec Baldwin’s legendary tirade in “Glengarry Glen Ross” was “ALWAYS BE A CLOSER.”
And basketball, more than any other team sport, thrives on the guys who can close. The one who not only can make the big play with the game on the line, but relishes the opportunity. Many great talents have wilted at crunch time and with it, their reputations.
L.A. fans are used to celebrating Kobe Bryant for his late game heroics and rightfully so. But more and more they are realizing there’s a new kid in town who may be just as good — Chris Paul of the Clippers. His last second shot to beat Memphis is just the latest example.
Memphis made a trade during the season, getting Tayshawn Prince and giving up Rudy Gay. Prince is probably the better all around player. But Gay is a guy who enjoys the big moments.
The Grizzlies were thought to be a better team than the one a year ago that barely lost to the Clippers. But they don’t have that player everyone looks to when a big shot is needed.
The Clippers do. It lifts everyone’s play. If a team is going to contend, it has to have that guy. That’s why the Clippers have a chance to win it all. They’ve got the best one still playing. I’m sure Chris would never be as potty mouthed as Alec. But he would agree with one thought. “ALWAYS BE A CLOSER.”