For someone billed as an NBA "superstar," it seems a little odd that T-Mac has never gotten out of the first round. It's not like he hasn't had the opportunities or the time. He's been playing in the league for 10 years. And on Saturday night, he had a chance, AT HOME, to close the door on the Jazz.
So let's be honest here, and by honest I mean brutally frank. T-Mac isn't a superstar. Superstars can actually will their teams to victory, through both leadership and play. They win a playoff series when up 2-0 against an opponent. They win game 7 at home. They can get their team into the second round of the playoffs at least once in a decade. T-Mac hasn't done any of these things. And I don't care that some people say, well his teammates (aside from Yao) aren't that great. Superstars should be able to pull less than incredible teams into the second round.
Now I realize T-Mac played an exceptional series, but after the Rockets went up by 5 with under 4 minutes remaining in game 7, T-Mac began to defer to other teammates. He should know better than anyone else that as good as Yao is, Yao doesn't have the ability to close out games. And there's no one else on the Rockets who can do it either. It's all on T-Mac's back.
I watched the game when T-Mac scored 13 points in 35 seconds to give the Rockets a huge win over the Spurs in the 2004-2005 regular season. Where that T-Mac went, with ice in his veins, we'll never know.
Instead, we got the same old T-Mac. Great player, but always coming up just short. So now the Warriors are facing Deron Williams, who when he's on is as good or better than BDizzle. And we're facing the bulked-up Boozer
I don't know about you, but I would have rather seen the Warriors face Skip to My Lou while running Yao into the ground. It would have been great for you T-Mac. You'd have gotten the first round monkey off of your back and you'd be averaging 40 a game on the Warriors - all while the Warriors would be winning the series easily.
If we lose this series to the Jazz, T-Mac, it's all on you.