DALLAS — As intriguing and intense as this Western Conference first round playoff series between the Mavericks and Trail Blazers is, I must admit it is missing one key ingredient.
And that missing ingredient is a character like Stan Van Gundy.
Hear me out before you assume I’m comparing the abilities of these coaches, because I think all three are accomplished in their own right.
Both Rick Carlisle and Nate McMillan are laser-locked on trying to get their teams through Game 6 on Thursday night at the Rose Garden in Portland. And neither one of them is the natural comedian that Van Gundy is with a microphone in his face and a captive audience.
In answering a simple question after the Magic’s Game 5 blowout win over the Hawks last night he defended Dwight Howard‘s honor (yet again), while also taking shots at those of us forced to listen to him on a regular basis.
You need to see this one for yourself:
Just so we’re clear, he was not criticizing the officials.
He was criticizing the media for not seeing Howard’s side of things in this season-long debate about whether or not the three-time Defensive Player of the Year is subject to more physical abuse from the opposition than should be allowed.
That part is understandable. Maybe some of us aren’t as sympathetic to Howard’s cause as we should be. But that’s beside the point. Van Gundy has more important things to worry about than insulting us.
If the Magic can’t find a way to beat the Hawks Thursday night in Game 6, that will be the end of the line for the Stan Van Show this season.