It is a noisy venue. Over two hundred basketball fans were watching Game Four of the series between the Lakers and the Celtics. As usual, there was the banter between the Lakers fans and the Celtics supporters. Then came the second half and the venue become more and more quiet. Most times, it is not possible to hear the television commentators. It was not so on this night. The commentators were hear distinctly. People were sitting in stunned silence.

The Lakers had a twenty four point lead and home court advantage. The Celtics had had a horrendous first quarter and trailed 35 -14 to begin the second quarter. Then, in the second half, the Celtics chipped away at the lead and the venue became very quiet. The Lakers scored thirty three points (33) in the second half. The Celtics had fifty seven (57) in the final two quarters. The Celtics dominated in rebound: 24 – 15. And the three points shots were falling for the Celtics.

And people were silent. It was disbelief at what they were seeing. Was it a historic comeback or a monumental collapse?

The score was 94 – 91 with the ball in Ray Allen’s hands. Ray Allen had played every minute of the game and now he was guarded by Sasha Vujacic. Kevin Garnett started towards Ray Allen to set a screen on the Lakers defender but Ray Allen waved him off. Ray Allen had Sasha Vujacic alone and went by the Lakers defender for a layup. It was uncontested. Boston led 96 – 91.

There was a smattering of cheers from a few of the Celtics fans. Most of the fans, even the Celtics supporters, sat in stunned silence. It is amazing how such a large group of people can be so quiet. It was a historic game. Game Four become an instant basketball classic. Afterwards, one Lakers fan commented that it would be years before he could bring himself to watch that game again.

Catherine Forsythe