Recently, the “Big 3” took their talents to S. Beach. So far, not so good. With the exception of Chris Bosh, it looks like everybody took a step in the negative direction where it matters most. After their most recent unimpressive victory over Bosh’s old boys the Toronto Raptors, the Heat, projected by idiots across the USA to win 72 games or more, are only 2 games better than .500.
Now, I could go on and on for days about why this is happening, who’s to blame, or who’s not going to have a job by the time Pat Riley can say 2006, but those are all for other blogs.
Nope. Today, I want to address a simple and egregious statement made by Erik Spoelstra (I don’t care if I spelled it right) and D-Wade, and break down why these two and LBJ MAY be on two, different pages.
After their second loss to the Boston Celtics, both of the Heat vets from last year (Spoelstra and Wade) made the same statement: “We know we won’t be playing our best b-ball until end of January going into February.”
As the above statement was being said, I think I heard LeBron inside his head saying “well . . . ‘What Should I Do?’ until then???” However, neither the King, nor I should be surprised. Why? Because this is the terrible basketball Miami plays EVERY YEAR! This year isn’t a special exception. I believe this has little to do with special offensive sets that need to be drawn up and much more to do with tradition. Traditionally, every year, the Miami Heat and Wade don’t play basketball until after the All-Star Break. Why…because in the Eastern Conference you don’t need to. Wade beats up on the teams he can, steals a win or three from a playoff contender and then cruise controls it to April/May for the playoffs.
I looked at the records and what I found supported this argument. All of last year, the Heat had about 9 wins against playoff teams that went to the second-round. The other times they played these same teams (save the Orlando Magic) they lost. They had only 23 wins by Feb. 6, 2010, they were 23-27 before they/Wade decided to make the playoffs last year. All the while, King James had nearly double this amount of wins and his Cavs stood at 43-10 by the same date last year. So, while James was playing for the best record not just in the East, but in the entire league, on his way to his second MVP. Flash and company decided to take the easy road. They beat up on easy wins (see Indiana, N.J., Wash., Golden State, et al.) and didn’t start playing LAST year until February. Which leads me to believe this year’s late start is more by choice than D-Wade would have a King to believe. But the proof is in the record. . .
Long story short, LBJ doesn’t take games off and he doesn’t fancy losing often. No wonder these last two Celtics games he’s just decided to play them into it in the 4th quarter, turning double-digit leads into mere 5 pt. victories for the C’s. To add insult to injury, they lost AT HOME. LeBron doesn’t even know what that looks like. He nearly NEVER loses at home. Only 6 home losses for Bron-Bron last year (including 2 to the C’s in the playoffs). Further, when he plays, he plays to beat the best. Why does D-Wade get 23 points combined in both Celtic games, but then avg. high 20’s versus all other opponents? Is he just having off-days, or is he just not used to actually needing to show up for work before MLK day???
I think this will end-up with LeBron making a brand new Nike commercial in 3 years, similar to Tiger Wood‘s famed commercial of last year, but instead it will be Michael Jordan’s voice asking softly in the background: “Did You Learn Anything?”