NBA Playoff Memes celebrate the five stories everyone is buzzing about after each day of the 2011 NBA Playoffs. In Thursday's No. 3, we discuss Brandon Roy's outstanding performance in limited minutes, two days after admitting he had to hold back tears because he wasn't playing.
Brandon Roy earned the distinction of being one of the first NBA players in the history of the game to complain about playing time after playing poorly and gain universal sympathy for it. When I say "earned," I mean it. Given everything he's been through injury-wise, it was sad to hear about him holding back tears after he wasn't effective enough to play in the Blazers' Game 2 loss on Tuesday. A year and a half ago, Roy was one of the best players in the league. Now, he's sometimes coming into the game after Patty Mills.
The good news, though, is that sports always offers a chance for redemption. Roy took advantage in Friday's Game 3, scoring 16 points in 23 minutes to help the Blazers get a much-needed 97-92 win. It was just like old times at the Rose Garden, if only for a few minutes. Roy entered the game to thunderous cheers, cementing Blazers fans as the most forgiving and passionate ones in the game. He nailed a stepback jumper on his first possession, the kind that was his bread and butter in his heyday. He even got to the rim off the dribble from the three-point line, though we didn't see a dunk resulting from it. All the while, it was awesome to see.
It's a cliche, but the whole thing is why we love sports. Roy had an immediate chance to redeem himself, his hometown fans supported him and drove him to succeed and his team won. What more can you ask?