NBA Champs: Who Will It Be This Year?
Bosh, Wade, James....of defending champions HEAT
As the matchups for the NBA playoffs began to unfold, the prevailing questions throughout the last few weeks were….will the Miami Heat three-peat OR would there be a team to come along and dethrone the King and his crew from the league’s top rank?
I may as well throw my two cents in the ring too…it is only opinion after all! If I had to call it today, San Antonio is the only team that could give Miami a bonafide run for the title. The only caveat is the tough road the Spurs will have to take to make it out of the super stacked Western Conference! Not to make light of any team’s qualifications but at least on paper, Miami’s road map is far less complicated…much more of an “as the crow flies” journey versus the winding roads along the Pacific Coast Highway variety of the West teams. Big Sur anyone?
In the end….it’ll be the NBA’s new Commissioner, Adam Silver standing alongside the Miami Heat…after their plethora of lineups leads them to that all too familiar place of a stage, littered with confetti as they take turns hoisting and kissing the championship trophy!
Miami took their first step toward that stage with a win over the Bobcats. Charlotte held their own and kept it competitive…but in the fourth quarter Miami poured it on and left the court with a “w”….
On the other side of the Mississippi, San Antonio charged back from a double digit deficit to defeat the Dallas Mavericks. See what I mean?....a number 1 seed having to pull out all stops to beat the number 8 seed…the West.Is.Tough!
Rewind to the first set of games…..if it weren’t for the Oklahoma City Thunder, the concept of home court advantage was going to be a thing of the past! Memphis fought their way from a twenty five point hole to make it respectable… in the end though, downtown OKC was jumping for joy as the Thunder sent the Grizzlies back to the drawing board
Remember those old guys from Boston that took their talents to Brooklyn?….well, they came through in big fashion as the Nets gave a much younger Toronto Raptors team an up close and personal lesson in “experience”!
No place better than Los Angeles, movie capital of the world, for the scene of a dramatic ending? Things weren’t looking good for Golden State as the first few minutes of the clock ticked away…which is exactly why team’s must grind it out each and every minute. If the Warriors had thrown in the towel, they wouldn’t have found themselves on the winning end of a game showcasing one too many, last second missed opportunities for the Clippers.
Not too many things leave me with a loss for words…however, I will cop to it when trying to figure out the state of the Indiana Pacers. We all know the story…Indiana has been thirsty for a rematch with the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Final. Trouble is, somewhere along the lines the Pacers managed to lose sight of the other twenty eight teams in the league. Exhibit A, the Atlanta Hawks absolutely were not scared of coming into Indiana’s backyard and handing them a loss that the final score didn’t quite capture!! Hmmm, looks like I just backed into figuring that out…Indiana has been preparing for a best four of seven series since the season’s tip-off…now they are learning, no doubt the hard way, the NBA season is a mighty, mighty long one!!
Two more games to go before the weekend wraps. No secrets here, if I were a gambler…I’d put all chips on the fellas from South Beach!!
Regardless of who comes out victorious….I’m prayerful that Craig Sager…TNT’s sideline reporter …has many, many, many more interviews to give …in outlandish ensembles triggering winces and adjustments of HDTV color settings, of course! Fight on Craig, fight on!!!!