The sports jinx is a debatable proposition but belief in it, among sports fans, is widespread and inescapable. For example, I take partial blame for the Celtics’ unfortunate defeat in Game 3 of the NBA Finals last night. Why? Because at half time I was horrified to realize that I was wearing a Watts Tower T shirt that I bought in Los Angeles four years ago. Wearing a T shirt from LA while watching the Celtics battle the Lakers in Boston?! Heresy.
How to better explain Ray Allen’s curious debacle of a night? One game after setting an NBA Finals record for most three pointers in a game, Allen goes 0-13 from the field and scores only 2 points in the Celtics 91-84 defeat. Even though I took the shirt off and buried it at the bottom of the dirty clothes hamper at half time, the damage was done. The Celtics dug themselves a 17 point hole in the first half while I was wearing it. Shame on me!
Interestingly, last night the Lakers narrowly avoided one of the dependable ‘scoring’ jinxes, the dreaded 10-4 score early on. Nine times out of ten, the team that finds itself down 10-4 goes on to lose the game. It’s almost science. It was 8-4 at one point last night but the Celtics were unable to score the all important basket that would have made it 10-4. Would that have been enough to overcome my LA T shirt folly? We’ll never know.
Game 4 now looms like a nuclear power plant cooling tower. Any cracks in the structure and New England is looking at an environmental sports disaster. Proper anti-sports-jinx measures WILL be taken. We may have to summon the spirit of George Plimpton for advice in the matter.