Before Game 1 of the playoffs, the Suns’ Amare Stoudemire stated, “the regular season consists of great professionals, but the playoffs are where stars are born.” Well… after Game 1, the Suns have a newborn star in Leandro Barbosa.
Leandro Barbosa led the Suns to a 95-87 win in Game 1 of the playoffs on Sunday.
(Barry Gossage/NBAE Photos)
He “toasted” the Lakers tying his career playoff-high with 26 points.�L.A. had no answer for LB, who is unguardable with his warp speed. Coach Mike D’Antoini in the press conference following the victory said, “to play at that speed must be fun.”
Barbosa,�like the rest of the team, appeared “tight” early in the game, but then exploded for 15 points in the 3rd quarter, including a huge three-point shot to energize the Suns heading into the 4th.
After the game I asked Suns Chairman Jerry Colangelo who Barbosa reminded him of; who could he recall in his almost 40 years with the Suns played at his blurring speed? He couldn’t come up with anybody. That’s what is exciting and so promising about the Brazilian Blur. He’s so unique, he’s an original. He should soon be named the Sixth Man of the Year, and I believe he will end up being named an All-Star in the near future.
LB’s metamorphosis started on January 2nd in Chicago, when he hit a�three-pointer to beat the Bulls. Since that time his confidence has grown. As D’Antoni put it, “he thinks he’s Superman.”
Coach may just be on to something. After all, Superman is faster than a speeding bullet and can leap tall buildings in a single bound. The Suns’ Superman does that at times, plus a few�things the other Superman never thought possible.