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The California Parade

Updated on August 17, 2016

Last Call For A Legend

The 2016 NBA season was anything but smooth for the Los Angeles Lakers, a team loaded with young talent, yet severely lacking in experience and direction. Arguably, this past season could be considered the worst in team history.

Among the most storied franchises in the NBA for decades, the 2016 Lakers took a steep fall toward the bottom of the barrel. Jim Buss's failure to sign big name free agents during the last off-season, citing salary cap constrictions, in addition to the revolving door of coaches, led to the systemic free fall.

Kobe Bryant has carried the Lakers franchise for several years, an impossible weight for one man to carry, almost single handedly. Bryant, a World Champion, All-Star and former MVP, gave Lakers fans at least a hope of a win each and every game.This season has been his swan song,his farewell tour!

The timing is perfect, by all accounts it takes the hope for another ring and replaces it with a last chance to see a living legend.Although the year will not go down in the championship list it will go down as a time we will remember for years to come.Even in his last tour, Kobe brings out the fire and passion in people.Showcasing what it means to love something.

Then we sat and watched his final game thinking as per usual would play a few minutes and take a seat on the bench and exit the floor under applause. I don't think anybody imagined what would take place as the game progressed, Bryant scored a whopping 60 Points, for a moment we all got sent back in time to catch a glimpse of the what used to witness just one last time.

After all the ups and downs of this 2015-2016 season, the Lakers still manage to dazzle the NBA world!

I don't think we will ever see someone in the game like Kobe Bryant again. Even though we say goodbye, We say hello to new generation of superstars that will carry the game like Kobe has.

Not bad for a kid who grew up playing soccer in his youth while living in France.Coming back to America to get drafted at age 17 out of high school to his favorite team. A feat that falls in line with the "America Dream".

Through the flashing lights and all of the endorsements, there's something to be said abut what it means to be great or perhaps even the best of all time.

As his era comes to a close Kobe Bryant will leave a legacy that will be hard copy and most likely won't be seen again. After 6 championships, i think he's earned his right to take a seat and hang em up. maybe he will be back to coach one day although i don't see that happening anytime soon.

Either way, it can't be denied nor forgotten.The love of the game is real, he embodies what that means. We say goodbye to a legend and hello to one in the making, i don't if we have ever seen a passing if the torch like this.From Jordan to Bryant to Curry!

Meanwhile, In northern California there is a young team rising, with the same kind of aggression as Kobe has had. Making their names known and reinventing what used to be the standard of greatness or how we measure it.The hype and stature take a back seat if your chasing the not so common goal.

Pushing The Boundaries

In the Second week of April 2016 on the same night, The Golden State Warriors seemed poised, never have we seen such a young team taken on a task of this nature. No one expected that a team being bounced out off the playoffs early the last two years before 2015, would explode in this kind of short of a time span.

Even though they won the Title last year, nobody gave them any credit as if it was a hand me down given from the NBA. No, they didnt play lights out or didn't just out play Clevand. Nope just doesn't count, simply a freak accident that Lebron had lost another finals. They only won because Kyrie Irving was out because of a knee injury! This year, well that's a whole different story.

Steph Curry, The reigning MVP as well as the first player to score 400 3pter's
in a season and being consistent in his play. Maybe, it was due to Draymond Green, a dominant power forward who not only plays well on offense but is the defensive backbone of the team. Let's throw Klay Thompson a bone, the other half the so-called "Splash Brothers" can hit a 3 from a mile away if he has to.

The Idea of what seems to be back to back championship team no longer a simmering question. In fact has become a probability, Teams like the Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets are both racked with talent but can't figure out the championship formula. The algorithm of greatness just doesn't like being spread too thin.

Adding the fact that the Warriors are coached by a member of the 98 Bulls in Steve Kerr. Luke Walton did a fantastic job at the start of the season, going 39-4 through January as Kerr was out with back issues. Overcoming the 98' Bulls record of 72-10! In which we initially thought was impossible, or did we in subconsciously tasking it to Lebron James with hyperbole.

After all Golden Sate has earned their place atop the mantle and if they win the Title again, it should only be based on fact not excuses! Their illustrious quest doesn't seem to be slowing down.

Now, it's on to the playoffs but don't start thinking The Warriors will fall short of the finals but you never know, with other teams like The Spurs inside that category of for sure playoff teams, not to mention the 2012-2013 NBA Championship No doubt, The Cavs will most likely make it through and have a hand in the the finals for sure. Maybe it's the LA Clippers year finally after their enduring run last year. I refuse to believe The Warriors will be out before the Western Conference Finals or even The Finals for that matter. Then again, this is the NBA where the seemingly impossible becomes the probable.







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© 2016 Tj Mazz

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    • lions44 profile image

      CJ Kelly 17 months ago from Auburn, WA

      Nice article. I used to be very big NBA fan but have fallen off the wagon the last few years. I do miss the defense and have been heartened to guys like Khawi Leonard flourish this time of year.

      The Warriors are a great story. Easy to cheer for. But the league has a competiveness issue. Going into a season, there are only 2-3 teams that can win a championship. The same can't be said for the other 3 major sports. In 35 years, there have only been 10 or 11 different champions? Not sure on that. I would get rid of Minn, Charlotte, New Orleans and Memphis. But maybe I'm too radical.

      Welcome to HP. Good luck.