Noted Boston man Bill Simmons may have betrayed his home region on his latest podcast. During a discussion with Zach Lowe, Billy from Marlborough admitted he thinks the 2020 Los Angeles Lakers would beat his beloved 2008 Boston Celtics.
Simmons and Lowe went deep on the comparison and examined the resumes and rosters of both teams. A consensus emerged: the Lakers would win a series between the two teams in seven games.
Here's their debate:
Simmons initially seemed to be leaning towards the Celtics, but Lowe made some fantastic points. Boston was taken to seven games by the Atlanta Hawks and Cleveland Cavaliers in 2008 en route to a title. It's hard to reconcile those performances against inferior teams and come to the conclusion that the Celtics would beat a Lakers team that has steamrolled its way through the playoffs.
The Celtics were the top seed in the Eastern Conference in 2008 and faced the eighth-seeded Hawks in the opening round. Atlanta was led by Joe Johnson and Josh Smith, while Al Horford was a rookie and an aging Mike Bibby played point guard. Let's be real: that wasn't a good Hawks team and they took the Celtics to the brink.
The Cavs were the four seed in the East and met the Celtics in the second round. LeBron James was 23 and already a superstar, but had virtually no supporting cast. He willed the series to seven games essentially by himself. Facing elimination in Game 6, James scored 32 points, grabbed 12 rebounds and dished out six assists in 47 minutes and forced a deciding Game 7. The Celtics eventually won the series.
If James did that to the the 2008 Celtics as a young guy with no help, what would he do with a solid roster around him that includes Anthony Davis? It's fair to assume the Lakers would take the series given what we've seen.