NBA Cancels Indiana/Boston Game; Will Not Reschedule


(Image: John Tlumacki/Boston Globe Staff)

For obvious reasons, the NBA has cancelled tomorrow’s game between the Pacers and Celtics in Boston. It was a tragic day for the city, state, nation and world, so there is no reason to play a silly, near-meaningless game.

Simple decision really.

Gathering another crowd for a sporting event is just not a risk worth taking. Plus, with both teams likely to rest a bunch of starters (Indiana is locked into the three seed; Boston the seven), it would just be unimaginably awkward to have a reeling fan base pretend to cheer for Shavlik Randolph and Jordan Crawford to defeat Jeff Pendergraph and Ben Hansbrough.

Instead, each team will only play 81 games this season, which Howard Beck of the New York Times says has never happened before (in a non-lockout season).

It’s more of a curiosity than it is meaningful, however, since each team’s playoff fate is already set.

Moke Hamilton explains.

As for the Pacers, they will fly back to Indiana tomorrow morning.

But the team did have some free time today in Boston, and at least a few members of the organization spent some time downtown watching the marathon.

From their Twitter remarks, they were all out of harm’s way well before the bombs exploded, but it must have been chilling to be so near the crime scene on the day of the tragedy.

Paul George was in the area.

Sam Young also couldn’t believe what happend to the race he had just been watching.

Roy Hibbert struggled to make sense of the senseless.

Lance Stephenson went from being “bored out of [his] mind” the night before in Beantown to praying for Bostonians.

Orlando Johnson and Ben Hansbrough were enjoying a trip to Fenway one minute then suffering a heavy heart the next.

And David Benner, the team’s long-time PR man, added a sober perspective.

All this just goes to show what an abrupt end to a normally great day this horror was.

Patriots’ Day is like the Fourth of July but for Boston only. The whole town gets out to support the runners or the Sox or just do some day drinking. If the weather turns really nice, people might even get to barbecuing.

Even world-class, millionaire athletes get caught up in the wonder.

They turn into tourists. Just like the people from Vermont who drive six hours to go to one of the first games of the year at Fenway. Just like the Mainers who come down to support their moms and pops and aunts and uncles who make an annual tradition out of coming to the big city to participate in the world’s premier marathon.

Normally, it is the marquee day each year for one of America’s greatest city.

It is supposed to be a day of new beginnings, when everyone remembers the distant past and celebrates the end of the recent, freezing days that just passed.

Instead, some fucking scumbag(s) took lives and limbs from those victims unfortunate enough to be in proximity of the blast.

Some people will never be the same. Some families will never recover.

But the city will.

Aint shit this can do to Boston.

A few games will get cancelled, a lot of tears will be spilled, bodies will get lowered into the ground and some people may never walk again.

But you know what this city is going to do?

It’s going to get beyond this pain.

Hell, Boston is probably going to produce a “victim” with a prosthetic who completes this marathon one day. It might not be next year, but when one of these heroes gets out of surgery and straps on a plastic leg and goes through months or years of physical therapy and then runs 26 miles through the streets of the city that powered this nation to win the fucking Revolutionary War, it will be unmistakably obvious that explosions will never shake the resilience of this town.

Or this country.

And you? You dumb piece of shit who did this?

You get to live the rest of your miserable life knowing that the scars you gave Boston today will soon turn to strength. Knowing that this nightmare will someday turn the city’s greatest day into one that can’t help remind all of its people why they’re the only sons of bitches tough enough to have built this country from its beginnings.