Posted by: Nate | May 7, 2008

The Parquet Posse: Boston vs. Atlanta – Game 7

Celtics vs. Hawks: Game 7 – Win or Go Home.

That was the environment Boston was engulfed in over this past weekend when the surprising Atlanta Hawks forced a game 7 in their first round series with our beloved Celtics. People were somewhat nervous going into this game, since most of the fans, pundits, and players (I’d imagine) didn’t see this series making it 7 games. We were also hopeful though, as Boston has a great winning percentage historically at home in the playoffs, and especially in game 7’s. Also, we had beaten the Hawks 3 times at home already in convincing fashion.

It was with this backdrop that I had a difficult decision to make. I was offered tickets to the game from some friends of mine, and I instantly accepted of course. The offer was made Friday night and by Sunday morning I felt terrible. My health has been pretty horrible this year for a lot of reasons, and Sunday was no exception to the nagging pseudo-sickness I have had for awhile. It felt like I was looking at the world through a dirty cigarette filter and that I had spent far too long cruising around the Tilt-a-Whirl I was so nauseous. I briefly considered giving my ticket up to someone else, but then realized I would be really upset if this turned out to be an ESPN classic worthy game and I missed it. Thus, I did what any good fan would do and sucked it up because my team needed me.

Our seats were phenomenal, as we were about 15-20 rows behind the basket on floor level. How we acquired these seats is astonishing, but I wasn’t about to complain. The energy in The Garden was electric once we arrived and as soon as we got to our seats the 6 of us set in on our mission to be “those fans.” We were standing most of the game like a group of chanting, cheering, heckling and dancing machines. We started innumerable “Let’s go Celtics!” chants, mercilessly berated Zaza Pachulia all game long, got the several “Where’s Mike Bibby?” chants going and even got a personal shout out from the Celtic’s mascot Lucky, who came to our section to dole out high-fives for our good work.

I almost felt bad for the two Hawks fans sitting in front of us who got a steady stream of taunting for the entirety of the game. But then I came to my senses and realized these guys were stupid enough to think that this particular Hawks team, winners of a paltry 37 games all season, was going to stroll into Boston for a game 7 and steal a win. To quote an amazing sign a girl had in the front of our section:
“The Garden – Where Shocking the World WON’T Happen!”

I went to the March meeting of the Pistons and Celtics, and the energy and intensity in that game was something I would have classified as “playoff level.” Game 7 started out louder and got progressively more intense with each passing second of this game. There is nothing quite like playoff sports in Boston. Game 7 was your quintessential example of The Garden being The Garden again and not some stupid corporate whore box owned by TD Banknorth or Fleet. As far as I, and many fans are concerned, our house will always be The Garden. The building was rocking all game long, despite it never being a game and resembling more of a massacre, and I wouldn’t be surprised if passing cars on the central artery could hear and feel the crowd noise as they drove by.

As for the game itself, we totally dismantled and embarrassed the Hawks who were never in this one. We ran a smooth offense and took good care of the ball, played strong, aggressive defense and acted liked a competent basketball team. The game was really punctuated by the flagrant 2 called on Marvin Williams that led to his ejection, a real sign of how things were going for Atlanta at that juncture. We in section 6 of course, serenaded young Marvin from the arena with a rousing cheer of “Na Na Na, Na Na Na Na, Hey Hey Hey, Goodbye” which echoed to the rafters.

It was great to see the team play this well, and dominate the entire game as much as they did. It was a much-needed win for us, both to advance to and build confidence for round 2. Despite feeling like crap heading into the game (and the deafening crowd noise did not help my headache) I was really glad I went and look forward to catching another game or two before the playoffs are over. As was so aptly put by a crowd of 19,000 strong: “We Want Cleveland! We Want Cleveland!”

New Feature!: At the end of every post I will be posting a baseball trivia question with the answer to follow in the next post, along with a new trivia question. Post your answers and guesses in the comments section and try to refrain from Googling.

Question: How many 200 hit seasons did Red Sox great Ted Williams have in his career?

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Responses

  1. […] know I have said this several times already, but the crowd was really something special the other night. It’s great to be a part of the crowd […]


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