The first round of the NBA playoffs was uncharacteristically exciting, with one gigantic upset (in the Western Conference, the 8-seed Memphis Grizzlies knocked off the top-seed San Antonio Spurs in six games) and only one sweep (in the Eastern, the depleted six-seed New York Knicks were battered by the three-seed Boston Celtics). So, as the second round commences (the first games were Sunday), who is Tablet Magazine’s official team?
The only teams with Jewish players, the Sacramento Kings and the New Jersey Nets, did not make the second round, much less the playoffs (and even that is an understatement). There would of course be a case for the Knicks, but they are gone, having still not won a playoff game since 2001 (and a playoff series since 2000).
If you read my article last week on Jews in sports, the answer becomes pretty clear: We have to go with Mark Cuban’s Dallas Mavericks. The Western Conference’s three-seed, they defeated the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round and, last night, beat the two-seed Los Angeles Lakers, in L.A., 96-94, despite Kobe Bryant’s 36 points; they now head home to play two games with a 1-0 series lead. Sounds promising! Go Mavs!
Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.