Monday, December 31, 2007

2007 Winding Down

Well, 2007 is finally winding down and it is obvious that there are some serious bowl games to be played yet in this year. Well, not really, but there are a few left in this year. So far I have picked 8 winners and 7 losers, but today is another day. Before we get to the bowl picks for today though, it should be mentioned that the Celtics just keep on rolling along.

Last night they completed their four game west coast trip by beating the Lakers, well, actually they rolled over the the Lakers like a cement truck heading to the construction site. The closest the Lakers got in the second half was at 3:16 in the 3rd quarter when Kobe fed Derek Fisher for a three pointer that made the score 72-66. The Lakers didn't score again until the 4th quarter and by that time the Celtics had a 16 point lead that would never be threatened again.

As for the just completed road trip, the C's went to Sacramento on the 26th and won 89-69, a twenty point shellacking over a losing team. This was followed by a game on the 27th in Seattle that the Celtics won 104-96 over an even worse team than the Kings. Still it was Ray Allens first trip back to Seattle and it was their sixth set of back to back games this year (6-0 on the second game of these sets) so a close game was to be expected.

Following a day off the C's continued to impress by beating the Jazz on the 29th by a 104-98 score that included an embarrassed Paul Pierce who hit the winning basket with 28 seconds left in the game. In this game the Celtics trailed at half time as they just could not stop the Jazz from shooting over 60% in the first half. Once again though they out scored their opponent in the third quarter and only trailed by two going into the fourth. The Celtics were now 3-0 on the trip and rumbled into Los Angeles trying to do two things, prevent Phil Jackson from passing Red Auerbach on the win list and sweep the road trip.

Mission accomplished! Another double digit win and another milestone achieved!

Setting The Pace
The Celtics are now off to a better start than the Bulls team that won an NBA-record 72 games. Here are the best winning percentages before New Year's Day:
1971-72 Lakers36-3.923*
1966-67 76ers35-3.921*
2007-08 Celtics26-3.897
1995-96 Bulls25-3.893*
* -- Won NBA title.
Some things are just meant to be and that is being accomplished by this Celtics team. As the box to the right says (lifted from ESPN.Com), the Celtics have joined a select few teams in the upper echelon of NBA history and the historic runs of the teams from Boston just keep on rolling (16-0 Patriots, 2007 World Series Champs) along in this last week of 2007.

Next on the docket for the Celtics will be a home game vs the Rockets on 1/2/2008 (got to get used to typing 2008) and another back to back as they face the Grizzlies on 1/4 at home and then travel to Detroit on 1/5. The Detroit game will be interesting since the Pistons beat the Celtics on 12/19 in Boston. I expect fireworks in that game!!

Enough about the Celtics though. Lets make our picks for today's Bowl Games!

The first game today at 12:30 is the Armed Forces Bowl! This game pits California (6-6) against Air Force (9-3). I think the Falcons will beat the Bears 31 - 27.

Next set of games has the Humanitarian bowl at 2:00 with Georgia Tech (7-5) playing Fresno State (8-4). Look for the rambling wreck to win this game 35-21. The other 2:00 game has #21 South Florida (9-3) playing Oregon (8-4). I just don't think that Oregon can hang with the Big East team and fully expect the Bulls to beat the Ducks 28-10.

Our 4:00 game features Kentucky (7-5) playing perennial bowl team Florida State (7-5) in the Music City bowl. Since Florida State has an academic scandal (gee another school in Florida with a thug reputation, who woulda thought that - ed) which will cause a good number of players to be left in Florida for this game, I expect the SEC to continue to roll as Kentucky blasts the Seminoles 35-10.

The 6:00 game features Indiana (7-5) vs Oklahoma State (6-6) in the bowl. I expect this game to be a shoot out and I even might watch a little bit of it on the NFL network. Indiana 31 - Oklahoma State 30.

The last game of the day will be at 7:30 on ESPN as the Clemson Tigers (9-3) take on the Auburn Tigers (8-4). This should be another good game but I fully expect the SEC team to beat the ACC team in a low scoring affair. Lets go with Auburn 18 over Clemson 17.

Well, time to do some menial errands on this last day in 2007. Catch you all later!

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