Welcome to American Mosaic in VOA Special English. I'm Doug Johnson.
Tens of thousands of basketball fans lined the streets of Los Angeles on Monday to watch a victory parade. They were celebrating the Los Angeles Lakers' victory over the Boston Celtics in the National Basketball Association championship game. Shirley Griffith has more.
The Celtics led the series three games to two. They needed just one more victory to win the best-of-seven games series and the NBA title. But the Lakers' Kobe Bryant scored twenty-six points in game six to force a game seven in Los Angeles last Thursday.
Our summer intern, Mike DeFabo, visited a sports bar in Washington for the game. He talked with some fans watching the game on television.
RYAN: "Well, it's getting toward the end of the week. So I just called some friends. It's game seven so we figured it would be a pretty good game, pretty close. Why not, come celebrate the end of the week with a beer and a good basketball game. Being here definitely helps me get more into the game. I mean the crowd seems to be into it. Even just people at the bar are cheering for big shots."
ZACK: "I respect Kobe [Bryant]. I respect his game. I think he's one of the top five players probably of all time. I wouldn't want to be his teammate. I think if I was a Lakers fan or Kobe was on my team that would be something I'd really look forward to as a sports fan. But he's also kind of that great sport enemy that we can all sort of love to hate."
GINA: "I'm a Lakers fan. I always have been since Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and back in the good old days. I didn't realize this is a Red Sox bar which would kind of mean that it's a Celtics bar, too. But it feels kind of good watching the Celtics fans walk away sad."
The Lakers played from behind for most of the game. They were losing by as many as thirteen points in the second half. That was until Ron Artest tied the game with a little more than seven minutes left in the fourth quarter.
Sasha Vujacic closed the game out for the Lakers. He hit two free throws in the final seconds to give Los Angeles an eighty-three to seventy-nine victory.
Kobe Bryant was named most valuable player in the finals for the second straight year. He averaged almost thirty points per game. This was his fifth NBA championship. Bryant said this championship is sweeter than the rest because it came against the Celtics.
The two teams have met twelve times in the championship series. They last played against each other in the finals in two thousand eight. The Celtics won that series in six games.
This was the Lakers sixteenth championship in team history. They moved one championship closer to the NBA record. The record is held by none other than the Boston Celtics, who have won seventeen titles.
This week's listener question comes from Jorge Shinozaki in Japan. While the World Cup is being played in South Africa, our listener wants to know more about the famous American soccer player Cobi Jones.
Cobi Jones was one of the most successful soccer players in America. He won championships at the college and professional level. And he was named United States Soccer Player of the Year. But he was not always a star.
Cobi Jones was born in nineteen seventy. When he was seven years old his coach told him he was not a good player. He thought the boy should give up the sport. Instead, Cobi tried even harder.
In nineteen eighty-eight Cobi Jones went to the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. At first, he was not seen as a great soccer player. But he became a star. He helped his team win the nineteen ninety college championship. The following year, Jones set a school record with eighteen assists. He was named an All-American. The governing body for college sports gives All-American honors to the best players in every sport.
After college, Cobi Jones played professionally in England and Brazil. Then in nineteen ninety-six, he came back to America to play for the newly formed Major League Soccer. It did not take long for Jones to make his mark on his new team, the Los Angeles Galaxy.
Jones spent eleven years with the team. Nineteen ninety-eight was his best year in the MLS. He scored nineteen goals and assisted in thirteen more. He was named United States Soccer Athlete of the Year. He led the Galaxy to the MLS Cup Championships in two thousand two and two thousand five.
At the same time, Jones also played for the United States national team. He played on three World Cup teams, including the two thousand two team that reached the quarterfinals. In total, Jones played in one hundred sixty-four international games. That is the most of any American player.
Cobi Jones played his final game with the national team in two thousand four. He retired from Major League Soccer in two thousand seven. The Los Angeles Galaxy honored him by retiring his number. He is now an assistant coach with the Galaxy.
Next week, vampire fans across the United States will be racing to theaters to see the movie "Eclipse." This is the third movie based on the "Twilight Saga" series of books written by Stephenie Meyer. Songs from the movie were recently released on a new album. It expresses the movie's difficult love story between a young woman and a vampire and the battle they must prepare to fight. Faith Lapidus tells us more.
That was the song "Let's Get Lost" performed by Beck and Natasha Khan, also known as Bat for Lashes. It is one of fifteen songs on the best-selling album "Eclipse."
The producers of the album considered hundreds of different songs. Paul Katz says they wanted to create a great musical experience for people whether or not they are fans of the "Twilight" movies. He says his team chose well known musicians as well as newly discovered bands. The music also had to express the rising tension in the movie as characters prepare for battle.
Here is the song "What Part of Forever" performed by Cee Lo Green.
We leave you with the song "Eclipse (All Yours)" by the Canadian band Metric. To create this song, the band worked closely with Howard Shore, the music writer for the movie "Eclipse." The song is about fearlessly loving someone no matter the cost.
I'm Doug Johnson. Our program was written by Dana Demange and Michael DeFabo who was also the producer.