Welcome to history, "Game 5.5"
In the history of MLB, the NBA and, without any expertise, the NHL, there is a single instance I can think of where we know a moment by its placement in the series:
"Game 6": The 6th game of the 1986 World Series. When you say "Game 6," most fans know what you're referring to. And that's it. Until now.
I would argue that "Game 5.5" joins that incredibly exclusive group. It is befitting the unprecedented nature of the 2008 World Series, likely to be the least-watched World Series in history.
But "Game 5.5" will live on forever. I love the concept so much that I led today's SN column with it.
(God, wasn't the idea of a championship game that lasted less than 90 minutes and finished before 10 p.m. ET the freaking best? Some enterprising sports-league exec is going to make something big from that.)
Huge congrats to the Philly fans out there. The rest of us give you a hard time, but no fan base is more passionate or, for lack of a better word, real. You deserve it. Please enjoy it. After the 25-year title drought since "Fo, Fo, Fo," you should know better than to not appreciate this moment.
Meanwhile, you'll see in the column: I'm not feeling all that bad about the Rays. Look at what the '91 Braves did after going worst-to-first then losing in the World Series -- they made the playoffs about a gajillion seasons in a row. The Rays still have the most enviable roster in the league -- even if Joe Maddon strangely didn't use ace David Price until it was too late. If there was a gaffe, that was it.
On to the NBA and Part 2 of its Opening Night: Wow, the Knicks are different. First of all, that offense. Second, D'Antoni left both Marbury and Curry benched the entire game. Third, David Lee and Wilson Chandler are going to have very big seasons. Oh, and they won.
Meanwhile, the Lakers were even more dominant than they were against the Blazers on Tuesday; Chris Paul started his MVP campaign -- I'd call him the "after-one-game NBA MVP"; Chris Bosh will benefit more from Jermaine O'Neal than Jermaine O'Neal will from Chris Bosh; Rudy Gay is going to have a big season; Jefferson and Love are instantly the most enjoyable young 1-2 frontcourt combos in the league; man, it's going to be a long season for Wizards fans.
Complete SN column here. More later.