Sports: How The Mighty Have Fallen!

Originally published on May 14, 2011 10:00 am
Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

SCOTT SIMON, Host:

Morning, Tom.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC)

TOM GOLDMAN: Hey, Memphis, come Oklahoma City or high water, forced a game seven against Oklahoma City. Who's got the edge tomorrow?

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

GOLDMAN: And I just think, you know, they're such an offensively explosive team. Memphis has done very well to keep this series alive. But I think in a game seven this is when a home court advantage really makes a difference.

SIMON: Yeah. And particularly that arena. Although, it'll be great if either of those teams got into the finals. But let me ask: Dallas, of course, has about a 45 day layoff after sweeping the Lakers, which brings up that old question. Does this give them time - and they're an older team, the Mavs, despite that name. Does it give them time to recuperate or just get rusty? And if you say time will tell I'm going to be very cross.

GOLDMAN: The Mavs have been up to the task defensively so far in the playoffs. They've allowed a little over 88 points a game. That's the best among remaining teams. But they'll have a challenge.

SIMON: And of course, the Bulls and the Miami Heat - Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat. You've got that James, Wade, Bosh triumvirate of billionaires. The Bulls have Derrick Rose and some good supporting names. Any chance?

GOLDMAN: The most important stat from those three wins, Scott, was that Chicago out- rebounded Miami by a total of 32 rebounds in three games. If Chicago can do that effectively versus the Heat, especially offensive rebounds, which would give the Bulls multiple chances to score, they don't have to worry about that question everyone's asking. After Derrick Rose who's Chicago's go-to guy offensively. They could have a chance that way.

SIMON: We have a couple of very sad deaths to report this weekend. Dallas Cowboys running back Ron Springs died on Thursday. And on Friday - we awake to the news this morning New York Rangers left winger Derek Boogaard was found dead in his apartment. He was just 28.

(SOUNDBITE OF LAUGHTER)

GOLDMAN: Twenty-eight years old, you know, always shocking when an athlete who appears to be in good health dies suddenly like that. Derek Boogaard, known as the Boogie Man in the league - he's a left wing for the New York Rangers - best known as a fighter. Got a lot of penalty minutes during his career. But those who knew Derek said he was a very kind and caring guy. Despite his brawler reputation, he was very involved with military-related charities.

SIMON: Yeah. Well, and they'll be looking for the concussion information I'm sure.

GOLDMAN: Right. Because he sat out a bunch of games - 52 games of this last season - with a serious concussion.

SIMON: NPR's Tom Goldman, thanks so much.

GOLDMAN: You're welcome. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.