2003 – 2004 Champs: The Detroit Pistons
Congratulations to the Detroit Pistons. It seemed that the whole country was a Pistons fan for just a little bit. Especially after game 3, where it seemed apparent to just about everyone that they were the better team and going to win the series.
Maybe some people liked them because they were the underdogs. Others liked them because they were the new face on the block. It could be their lack of a scoring superstar, that made them so intriguing. I’m sure their blue-collar team style of play won some hearts, a perfect antithesis to the Lakirs. (Oops! did I put an “I” in Lakers?) Somewhere out there, someone thinks Ben’s ‘fro is cooler than Jack’s mummified remains. For whatever reason, people seemed to jump on the bandwagon, especially the further the series was in the Pistons’ favor. Everybody loves a winner. Savor it while it lasts.
Next year, Piston fans, it won’t be the same. It’ll start when the Pistons play our team. You won’t be the lovable underdogs, but the favorites. We won’t turn a blind eye to all the physical contact that goes uncalled against our team. What was seen as confidence will now be perceived as cockiness. By the time you reach the playoffs, everyone will be aiming for you. Everyone will want to be the team to knock you off. Succeed and repeat as champions, and the intensity will grow for the next year. Fail, and you’ll be written off as a one year wonder, a fluke.
Until then I’ll be happy that the trophy is in your hands, and not in Hollywood. Enjoy your summer as champs. See you in preseason.