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Friday, June 01, 2012

OT: NBA Monthly Thread, June 2012

I estimate that only 10-12 Primates care about the NBA, but with our own thread, we won’t detract from what the site is really about: overwrought, acrimonious discussions about having where to put the site’s overwrought, acrimonious discussions.

Famous Original Joe C Posted: June 01, 2012 at 09:58 AM | 2704 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   501. JJ1986 Posted: June 05, 2012 at 11:41 PM (#4149468)
It's really impressive the number of minutes that Rondo and Pierce are playing. The Heat have no time to go against a second unit.
   502. Spivey Posted: June 05, 2012 at 11:42 PM (#4149469)
It was a freak bounce, but an incredible pass by Rondo to Pietrus.


Only one of them had a pass, right? I think the most freak bounce was someone (I think Bass) going up for a dunk, Wade blocking it and the ball squirting right to Pietrus.
   503. JC in DC Posted: June 05, 2012 at 11:44 PM (#4149470)
IIRC, Wade blocks, it goes to Rondo at top of circle who passes to MP.
   504. Spivey Posted: June 05, 2012 at 11:46 PM (#4149472)
Yes, you look right based on the replay I just saw. It was pretty incredible.
   505. Spivey Posted: June 05, 2012 at 11:49 PM (#4149473)
Both series have been very interesting. I don't think the refs controlled either of the Game 5s and they called the game well. But I'm interested to see how the next games are called - the crowds are going to be raucous and look at them like Game 7s. It's funny, in a way. I was happy with how both Game 5s were called, but the main idea IMO behind having HCA is expecting the refs to favor you, which didn't happen.
   506. Dandy Little Glove Man Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:06 AM (#4149477)
I'm focusing on them because they were in the 4th quarter and felt like 2 of the biggest plays of the game. In particular the first, which was maybe the most freak bounce I've seen in the playoffs, happened right when Miami was going on a run and Boston couldn't seem to run any offense.

This strikes me as a really strange comment. Wade blocked the shot, then Rondo went after the ball and tipped it to Pietrus, who was open in the corner. It's not like the ball bounced off someone's head and then got kicked right into Pietrus's chest. Though I hate Rondo, I'd have to admit that it was an amazing play on his part, rather than dumb luck or the ghost of Red Auerbach or something.

Edit: I missed the page flip and ensuing correction. Carry on.
   507. PJ Martinez Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:17 AM (#4149483)
@ZachLowe_SI Big picture: Boston hit 6 threes, had reasonable turnovers (13). Fare decently in those areas, Boston will always have a shot w/ that D.
   508. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:31 AM (#4149486)
This is crazy. I can't believe this happened.
   509. Famous Original Joe C Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:42 AM (#4149489)
Wow. I love this team so much.
   510. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:51 AM (#4149493)
From the 8:10 mark until 0:09, Lebron James was 0-3, 1 rebound, 1 steal. The best player in the game, the self-proclaimed "King" was completely invisible for almost the entire 4th quarter. Say what you want about Kobe Bryant, but make or miss, he at least shows up to take the shot. Lebron spent 8 minutes hoping Wade would bail them out. How can a player that great be so pathetic?
   511. Booey Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:56 AM (#4149495)
I'd be amused if Miami replays LeBron's last 3 years in Cleveland:

Lose in the Finals
Lose in the ECF
Lose in the 2nd round


It would actually be his last 4 years in Cleveland, since their Finals appearance was in 2007. You left out another second round loss in 2008. But that just means Miami needs to lose in the second round in the next TWO seasons to match them, and I'm totally okay with that.
   512. Phil Coorey is a T-Shirt Salesman Posted: June 06, 2012 at 01:01 AM (#4149496)
Wow. I love this team so much.


This
   513. baudib Posted: June 06, 2012 at 01:37 AM (#4149502)
The only thing LeBron did wrong was miss some shots. In the fourth he went 3-for-7, 9 points, 1 rebound, 1 assist, 1 steal.

at 8:16 he hits a 3-pointer to give the Heat their first lead since the third.

Then he misses a jumper, gets a rebound, a steal and Wade scores six straight Miami points. They led as late as 4:10 remaining.

After Boston ties it:

Wade misses layup
LeBron gets stuffed by Garnett
Rondo gets huge ORB and Garnett puts Boston ahead
T on Chalmers, Heat down 3
Chalmers and Pietrus trade 3s
Wade layup
LeBron misses 3
Haslem fouled
Pierce dagger

   514. Jolly Old St. Nick Still Gags in October Posted: June 06, 2012 at 01:42 AM (#4149503)
I'd be amused if Miami replays LeBron's last 3 years in Cleveland:

Lose in the Finals
Lose in the ECF
Lose in the 2nd round


I ain't counting no chickens, but if it happens, this is clearly God's judgment of that whole "South Beach" crowd. Couldn't happen to a nicer organization, all the way from Fashion Boy on down. This would be schadenfreude on a Richter scale.
   515. baudib Posted: June 06, 2012 at 01:54 AM (#4149505)
God doesn't judge or interfere in the NBA playoffs, IMO.
   516. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: June 06, 2012 at 01:59 AM (#4149506)
If God had anything to do with it, the Celtics wouldn't. TA-DA!

The only thing LeBron did wrong was miss some shots. In the fourth he went 3-for-7, 9 points, 1 rebound, 1 assist, 1 steal.
When your logo is a crown and your slogan is "Witness", you can't just not do too much wrong, you have to do something right.
   517. robinred Posted: June 06, 2012 at 02:17 AM (#4149509)
Here is what Haberstroh said in his grades:

LeBron James 11-25 FG | 6-8 FT | 13 REB | 2 AST | 30 PTS | 0

GRADE B-

After piling up monster numbers through the first 40 minutes of this game, LeBron looked absolutely gassed down the stretch. While Wade went to work on offense, LeBron actually stood motionless on the baseline for consecutive possessions in the fourth quarter. That won't exactly help the narrative. And that Paul Pierce dagger 3 with 52 seconds left? That was on LeBron, too.


I was a little surprised; the Heat Index guys often defend James no matter what. As is generally the case with James, the optics are bad.

I am starting to think Riley should come back. Spoelstra does not appear to be either a tactical wiz or to be notable as a leader of men. Maybe that is unfair to him, but it seems at times like Riley's bellicosity/gravitas might help Miami.
   518. baudib Posted: June 06, 2012 at 02:24 AM (#4149510)
When your logo is a crown and your slogan is "Witness", you can't just not do too much wrong, you have to do something right.


That's stupid. Your statement was that he didn't do anything except wait for Wade to bail him out. He hit a huge shot and then let Wade "bail him out" for the lead and then he took a couple of big shots and missed them.
   519. robinred Posted: June 06, 2012 at 02:33 AM (#4149513)
James was only 4/14 in the second half--(1/7 and 3/7), and Haberstroh said he looked gassed. Maybe a little more rest in Game 6 would help him late.

I also think playing Anthony 10 minutes or so might be a good idea; Spoelstra gave him a DNPCD tonight.
   520. If on a winter's night a baserunner Posted: June 06, 2012 at 02:48 AM (#4149518)
I can't express just how amazing Rondo's been in this series. I feel like he, and not James, is the most important player on the floor.


He's been really good this series, but I feel like if they switched teams that Boston would have likely swept.


I agree with both statements.

I thought the game was really won the back half of the 3rd quarter: Stiemsma came in for Garnett for about 4 minutes and, rather than cratering like they mostly have been without KG, they actually cut the lead. Maybe even retook it, I don't remember exactly.

Mainly, though, I'm just ecstatic. I thought that without Bradley to check Wade, this series would be much more dire than it has been. This team is flawed, but they play so, so hard. Easy to love if you're a fan.
   521. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: June 06, 2012 at 03:27 AM (#4149520)
That's stupid. Your statement was that he didn't do anything except wait for Wade to bail him out. He hit a huge shot
... at the 8:10 mark, and then didn't hit another one until there were 9 seconds left. In between, he only took 3 shots (which he missed) and zero assists. He simply vanished from the offense. He didn't go up looking for the ball from Wade or anyone else, he didn't look to post up or initiate any action, he just wasn't involved in the offense. He just stood and watched Wade try and win the game by himself.

I buy that he was "absolutely gassed", because he certainly played like it. If you disagree, why do you think it was that he didn't do anything for those eight minutes?
   522. baudib Posted: June 06, 2012 at 03:49 AM (#4149522)
He didn't "do anything" because he missed 3 shots, and because of lolable use of selective endpoints. He had 5 shots in the final 8:16 of the game, which is a lot by anyone's standard.

   523. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: June 06, 2012 at 03:51 AM (#4149523)
He had 6 shots in the final 8:16 of the game, which is a lot by anyone's standard.
Three of them were in a span of 15 seconds, 6 at the beginning of that stretch and 9 at the end. In between, Death Valley. We can agree that James is the most important player on the Heat, yes? Then why was he so absent from the offense for 8 straight minutes? Where did he go?
   524. baudib Posted: June 06, 2012 at 04:08 AM (#4149524)
He took 3 shots that he missed?
   525. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: June 06, 2012 at 04:31 AM (#4149525)
Exactly. Meanwhile, Wade took eight shots from the time James made that 3-pointer until the end of the game, got to the line a few times, monopolized the ball. Why didn't James call for the ball at all? Where was he? It's a legitimate question: if you watched the game, you'd have noticed that for an 8 minute stretch, he barely touched the ball, and he never called for it, asked for it, did anything to assert himself offensively. I find it curious, and I say this as someone who has repeatedly called james the best player in the NBA by a huge margin.
   526. baudib Posted: June 06, 2012 at 04:38 AM (#4149527)
On Monday night, from 10:56 left to 0:23 of the SA-OKC game, Manu Ginobilli went 0-for-5, missing 3 layups, made 2 free throws. Then he missed a potential game-tying 3 with 4 seconds left.

Here are the comments in this thread about Ginobili from Monday night:


GINOBILI IS GOING APESHIT


Ginobili is playing out of his ####### mind.

Some Spur should show some heart. It's Ginobili by himself.


They looked pretty done in this game. They got very little from anyone not named Ginobili.


   527. baudib Posted: June 06, 2012 at 04:46 AM (#4149528)
Exactly. Meanwhile, Wade took eight shots from the time James made that 3-pointer until the end of the game, got to the line a few times, monopolized the ball. Why didn't James call for the ball at all? Where was he? It's a legitimate question: if you watched the game, you'd have noticed that for an 8 minute stretch, he barely touched the ball, and he never called for it, asked for it, did anything to assert himself offensively. I find it curious, and I say this as someone who has repeatedly called james the best player in the NBA by a huge margin.


Yeah but if he just hits his shots he wins and he's a hero and no one says anything about it.

I mean, I think it's pretty obvious that without Bosh out there, if James/Wade don't combine for 70+ plus, the Heat will struggle to win games against good opponents. I'm pretty sure other players have gone 8-minute stretches where they didn't dominate the ball and let a fellow superstar dominate for a while, and I'm also pretty sure other players who would be considered the greatest of all time have been on the losing side of games before.

I don't really buy the "he's tired" excuse because it's pretty lame. He missed a potential game-tying shot and maybe he could have defended Pierce better on the killer 3.

Any criticism that goes beyond that or any attempts to psychoanalyze James is fairly ridiculous. The Heat starters not named James or Wade shot 6-for-16, and the bench scored 16 points. It's pretty obvious they aren't going to win often when James and Wade are merely good and the rest of the team gives them nothing.

It's totally cool if the mainstream media or Skip Bayless doesn't give LeBron any credit unless he gets up off his deathbed every morning, goes 45-10-10 a game and gets 16 buzzer-beaters on slam dunks, but come on, we have a higher level of discourse here.


   528. robinred Posted: June 06, 2012 at 05:28 AM (#4149530)
I don't really buy the "he's tired" excuse because it's pretty lame


Perhaps, but Haberstroh covers the Heat, talks to Heat players in person, watched the game live, and he's in the Abbott/Hollinger group at ESPN, not the Bayless/Smith group.

I agree that we need to look at the whole context of the game, as I have said about Kobe so many times. That includes Rondo and Garnett, Boston making big shots, Spoelstra, Bosh's injury, Wade, Miami's weak roster, and any number of other things. At the same time, though, James is the best player in basketball, and he didn't play very well at some key moments in an extremely big game was only 4/14 in the second half and has been the case before, was not assertive offensively on some crucial possessions. Being "assertive" doesn't mean he needs to jack up a shot, but I think most people would agree he should be involved on possessions that may determine Miami's fate for the season. Some will put that on Wade; some will put it on Spoelstra and many will put it on James himself. But I think it's a real thing, not just a Skip Bayless thing.
   529. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: June 06, 2012 at 05:44 AM (#4149532)
Though I hate Rondo


Wait, how is this even possible? Do you hate Dali and Picasso too? Think Toulouse Lautrec is a twit? Decry Duchamp?
   530. baudib Posted: June 06, 2012 at 05:57 AM (#4149535)
Being "assertive" doesn't mean he needs to jack up a shot, but I think most people would agree he should be involved on possessions that may determine Miami's fate for the season. Some will put that on Wade; some will put it on Spoelstra and many will put it on James himself. But I think it's a real thing, not just a Skip Bayless thing.


In the same time period that Hombre is talking about, Garnett and Pierce each had 2 shots and Rondo was like 1-for-5 or something. No one is going to say those guys disappeared or something. This is a pretty absurd level of nitpicking. Obviously this is going to happen in games that are lost, and in any close loss, any number of things can be pointed to. But the selective endpoints make it really absurd. We're talking about one superstar taking 3 shots and another one taking 6 when in reality, it was one guy taking 6 and the other guy taking 6 in basically the same time period.

LeBron scrutiny has now even surpassed the Wilt Chamberlain scrutiny.
   531. robinred Posted: June 06, 2012 at 06:35 AM (#4149538)
Garnett and Pierce each had 2 shots and Rondo was like 1-for-5 or something. No one is going to say those guys disappeared or something


The problem with this is obvious: James isn't Garnett, Pierce, or Rondo, and the Heat aren't the Celtics. His role is different, his skillset is different, and what his team needs from him is different. I agree with you to a great extent, in that, as I said about a year ago, players who are unique physical specimens tend to get unfairly tagged with make-up issues--until they win. But a bit of the scrutiny on James is there for legit reaasons. Same is true of Bryant.

As to the Chamberlain comp, that is of course partly just deliberate hyperbole, but since Chamberlain retired before you were born in all likelihood and when I was just a little kid, it really takes us nowhere. It would make an interesting article/study for media critics, in that James is burdened with the 24/7 news cycle and digital technology, whereas Chamberlain played in a time when race issues were very different than they are today.
   532. robinred Posted: June 06, 2012 at 06:37 AM (#4149539)
I think a simple way to look at it is this: was James the best player on the floor in the fourth quarter? In the last five minutes of the game? Fairly or unfairly, that is what is going to be expected of him in a big playoff game.
   533. Phil Coorey is a T-Shirt Salesman Posted: June 06, 2012 at 06:41 AM (#4149540)
Wait, how is this even possible? Do you hate Dali and Picasso too? Think Toulouse Lautrec is a twit? Decry Duchamp?


A lot of my friends out here absolutely despise Rondo , it breaks my heart. I love watching him play , just love him.
   534. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 08:28 AM (#4149573)
I am starting to think Riley should come back. Spoelstra does not appear to be either a tactical wiz or to be notable as a leader of men. Maybe that is unfair to him, but it seems at times like Riley's bellicosity/gravitas might help Miami.


I kinda agree with this, though not so much the Riley part. Spoelstra lacks gravitas. How could he not play Bosh? His explanation was silly. What has he done to push this team? I just don't see anything from him.
   535. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 08:34 AM (#4149576)
Hombre's comments have almost nothing in common with the game I saw last night. Should Lebron steal the ball from Wade? Everything was run through him late in the 4th- the plays were obviously designed to get Wade in isolation. Should Lebron throw a tantrum during a timeout? I really don't get it. This is truly just a pre-written narrative searching for an opportunity to revel in his defeat.
   536. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 08:38 AM (#4149582)
I am starting to think Riley should come back. Spoelstra does not appear to be either a tactical wiz or to be notable as a leader of men. Maybe that is unfair to him, but it seems at times like Riley's bellicosity/gravitas might help Miami.


I agree with RR on this one. On the one hand, you're able to tell yourself that if Bosh is healthy, this doesn't happen. But even with a healthy Bosh I think nearly everyone here would have picked OKC/San Antonio against them in the Finals. Last night was the first time in the past two years I actually thought they wouldn't ever put it together.
   537. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 08:41 AM (#4149586)
Should Lebron steal the ball from Wade? Everything was run through him late in the 4th- the plays were obviously designed to get Wade in isolation.


Really? If this is true, why? Why would you all of a sudden run the ball through Wade?

And, I question it b/c I just don't see the Heat calling plays, by which I mean, I don't see evidence (guys looking to the bench) that they're calling plays.
   538. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 08:55 AM (#4149598)
Personally, I love that photo I pointed you guys to, the one with Garnett staring at LBJ. I've become an enormous fan of KG in this. I think he's the Celts MVP, not Rondo. KG's intensity, his length, his bounce (even at 36 or so) are just amazing. Hate the Green, but I love him.
   539. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 09:07 AM (#4149605)
Really? If this is true, why? Why would you all of a sudden run the ball through Wade?


I have no idea. I think the easy answer is that they think it works, and is their best option.

And, I question it b/c I just don't see the Heat calling plays, by which I mean, I don't see evidence (guys looking to the bench) that they're calling plays.


Call it sets, plays, the offense, whatever. Their 4th quarter offense last night (and in most other games I've seen them) seems to revolve around Wade getting the shot in isolation, not on creating motion, or posting anyone, or getting Lebron the shot in isolation. On multiple trips last night late, Lebron passed the ball to Wade and made a lazy diaganol cut to the corner to draw men away. I don't understand any interpretation of that in which Lebron is supposed to be doing something else but is instead somehow shrinking from the spotlight, or not being assertive. It seems clear to me he's doing what their offense is designed for him to do on those plays.



   540. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 09:11 AM (#4149609)
I don't understand any interpretation of that in which Lebron is supposed to be doing something else but is instead somehow shrinking from the spotlight, or not being assertive.


Look, I'm not sure about it, either. But as rr says, it doesn't look right. LBJ runs that team. We all know that. I'm not criticizing. He runs it like MJ ran the Bulls. IOW, if you're right that this is their play in the 4th, that's only b/c LBJ consented to it. And that raises questions about his heart. It's like MJ allowing the 4th to be run through Pip, and that's just unimaginable, isn't it?
   541. PJ Martinez Posted: June 06, 2012 at 09:13 AM (#4149610)
Just re-watched Rondo's tip-pass to Pietrus after the Wade block. Assuming that was intentional (and it appeared to be): wow.
   542. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 09:17 AM (#4149611)
But as rr says, it doesn't look right. LBJ runs that team. We all know that.


I don't know how we know that. Or I should say I don't know that. It certainly doesn't seem to play out that way, and I don't know why Wade would need Lebron's consent for anything.
   543. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 09:19 AM (#4149613)
I'm actually a Celtics fan! I'll stop arguing about Lebron if I'm being a pest- I honestly was just surprised to come here this morning and find that to be the topic of conversation from last night.
   544. Zipperholes Posted: June 06, 2012 at 09:35 AM (#4149624)
I think a simple way to look at it is this: was James the best player on the floor in the fourth quarter? In the last five minutes of the game? Fairly or unfairly, that is what is going to be expected of him in a big playoff game.
Expected by whom? The only person whose expectations matter are Spoelstra. And Riley and Aronson, I guess. The public's expectations are irrelevant. He doesn't have to be "the best player on the floor." He has to be whatever is required to be successful, in his opinion and that of his team.
   545. Joey B. is being stalked by a (Gonfa) loon Posted: June 06, 2012 at 09:54 AM (#4149634)
He doesn't have to be "the best player on the floor." He has to be whatever is required to be successful, in his opinion and that of his team.

Seriously? Aren't we talking about a guy who I'm supposed to believe is one of the very greatest basketball players of all time?

Only a week or two ago someone on the previous NBA thread basically implied that James is one of the two or three greatest players of all time, and what you're describing sounds to me like someone who's closer to a role player.
   546. JJ1986 Posted: June 06, 2012 at 09:57 AM (#4149640)
Sometime in the fourth quarter, Wade went to the top of the key, LeBron ran around the outside, caught the ball and simply blew past Pierce at the free throw line. It looked so easy. For some reason, that was the only real play that the Heat ran towards the Basket in the last 18 minutes or so.
   547. JJ1986 Posted: June 06, 2012 at 09:59 AM (#4149641)
There was a touch in the fourth where LeBron got it open for three and passed it off to someone else behind the line (I think it was Cole or Chalmers) who then drove. At the one point it looked to me like he didn't want to take that shot even though his look was better.
   548. AROM Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:01 AM (#4149642)
Lebron started the game shooting 7 for 9. After that, 4 for 16. Tired is not a valid excuse. Pierce and Allen are older, playing 40+ minutes every night, haven't had more than one day off since between games 6-7 of the Philly series, and Pierce still has something left in crunch time.

I'm waiting for Lebron to deliver a big finish. So far all I see are excuses, and I'm tired of them. Does anyone here give Miami any kind of chance in game 6? I don't. I think it's equally likely they lose by 30, or lose a 4th quarter like last night.
   549. Der-K, the bloodied charmer Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:04 AM (#4149644)
LBJ runs that team.

I've never thought this.

Seriously? Aren't we talking about a guy who I'm supposed to believe is one of the very greatest basketball players of all time?

I largely agree with this. LBJ doesn't need to always be the dominant offensive player, the focus of every possession, etc... but he should (barring injury) always be the best player on the floor. When I've been watching, he has been (Rondo #2), but I've only seen about a third of the series - and none of last night's game.
   550. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:07 AM (#4149648)
AROM, that's the opposite of analysis, I'm sorry. He's the only reason they're where they are. Why does he need a "valid excuse" for going for 4 from 16? He had a bad shooting stretch, end of story. "So far all I see are excuses, and I'm tired of them." Why does Lebron turn smart people into Bill Plaschke? Come on.

EDIT: Yeah that's catty, but I'll leave it. You're obviously not Plaschke, AROM. I just don't see this kind of analysis about any other player, with the exception of some unhinged Kobe attacks.
   551. Eddo Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:25 AM (#4149661)
I just don't see this kind of analysis about any other player, with the exception of some unhinged Kobe attacks.

Well, no other player has/had a chance to go down as the greatest ever.

Most of these criticisms seem to be in the context of James's legacy, which I think is fair.
   552. booond Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:35 AM (#4149665)
The Heat need a point guard. It doesn't have to be someone of Rondo's skill set but they need a point guard who will run the asylum on the floor. Right now there's no flow to their game. They can get away with that most nights in the regular season but in the playoffs, against a good defense, it shows.
   553. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:45 AM (#4149671)
The Heat need a point guard

They have a fantastic one -- LeBron James. Why they don't use him that way is utterly beyond me. All but a very few possessions should run through the guy and there should never be a 4th quarter possession in a big game where he's a bystander. Never.
   554. Fear is Moses Taylor's Bacon Bits Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:46 AM (#4149673)
I don't know how we know that. Or I should say I don't know that. It certainly doesn't seem to play out that way, and I don't know why Wade would need Lebron's consent for anything.

The point is that it's a different offense/set/whatever than what Miami runs/ran most of the game. It was glaringly obvious, and it's not just counting shots or touches. It's that the team totally changed at the end of the game, and it's not something they always do but it seems to happen in games like last night where they end up losing. And LeBron gets the brunt of the criticism, but that's the part I'm not sure of. How much is him, how much is Wade, and how much is Spo?

Of course, the thing that jumped out at me is remember all that talk about the new Miami offense, the one similar to Oregon football? Where the hell is that? How is it that the old ass Celtics are the ones who look fresh and are pushing the ball and getting easy transition buckets and the Heat have to walk it up and set up isolation plays? A lot of the transition defensive blame can be laid at Wade's feet (partly, ok, mostly, because of his whining and begging for calls), but the foul that Pierce drew was a 1 on 4 pretty much, but no one on Miami was ready for it.
   555. Spivey Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:49 AM (#4149680)
I'm waiting for Lebron to deliver a big finish.

No you're not. Because then you'd just forget the next game, or the next week. He did this against Indiana a week ago, when Miami's back was against the wall. He did it against Boston in the ECF last year. He did it against Orlando a few years back. He did it in the most memorable close of my adult life against Detroit 5 years back. Be clear about it - you expect him to dominate every playoff series en route to a title. And that's something that he probably needs to do to be considered the GOAT. But this idea that any time he doesn't close means he can't close is ridiculous.

I do wonder if Wade/LeBron being friends is almost a detriment. When I was watching the 4th quarter, I had no idea why Wade decided he was going to start taking the ball up court and running the offense through him at the end of the game, when LeBron had significantly outplayed him. But he did have an easier matchup, and Wade did play fairly well in the 4th.
   556. Fear is Moses Taylor's Bacon Bits Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:56 AM (#4149686)
I thought the game was really won the back half of the 3rd quarter: Stiemsma came in for Garnett for about 4 minutes and, rather than cratering like they mostly have been without KG, they actually cut the lead. Maybe even retook it, I don't remember exactly.

KG sat in the 4th with just over 7 minutes left and the C's were down 2. When he came back in a few minutes later (I think it was after a TO between 4 and 5 minutes; but it was over 10 minutes in real time), the C's were only down 3. That was another huge sequence.

Wait, how is this even possible? Do you hate Dali and Picasso too? Think Toulouse Lautrec is a twit? Decry Duchamp?

Because he's a punk, borderline dirty, and people like you always trying to shove him on us. He is also a helluva player in the spotlight, and like I said the other day, I'm enjoying him for the first time ever this series.

I'm waiting for Lebron to deliver a big finish. So far all I see are excuses, and I'm tired of them. Does anyone here give Miami any kind of chance in game 6? I don't. I think it's equally likely they lose by 30, or lose a 4th quarter like last night.

That's the thing now isn't it. The stories have already written themselves.

The Heat need a point guard. It doesn't have to be someone of Rondo's skill set but they need a point guard who will run the asylum on the floor. Right now there's no flow to their game. They can get away with that most nights in the regular season but in the playoffs, against a good defense, it shows.

It's not just LBJ, Wade is a similar ball dominator. I don't know that a PG like Rondo has full value on this team. Chalmers, with his average defense, decent passing, and deep shooting is the perfect type of PG for this team. If the Heat had any interior size, they'd be able to take care of a huge weakness of Boston's (which no one in the playoffs have been able to do yet*). I see tweets claiming it's time to blow them up again, and other tweets bringing up the Bosh injury. But how do the Heat improve more around the edges? I don't see a significant way that they can, and you've got to start worrying about Wade declining soon. So let me once again pimp my idea from earlier these playoffs: Bosh/Wade for Howard/Anderson/Richardson/Reddick.

*Damn you Bulls. It was all going to fall so nicely into place!
   557. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:56 AM (#4149688)
The point is that it's a different offense/set/whatever than what Miami runs/ran most of the game. It was glaringly obvious, and it's not just counting shots or touches.


Absolutely, I've been saying that. I just lean (to address the next part of your post) to it being the team's fault.
   558. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 10:58 AM (#4149690)
LBJ runs that team.

I've never thought this.


I honestly didn't think this was either controversial or a criticism. My point is only that he's the best player on the team (as Jordan was, or Bird was, or Magic was, or Kobe was, etc), and that if he wants the plays to run through him, they will be run through him. I find much more controversial (and subject to criticism) the idea that that is NOT the case.

And, as Moses said, why would they changed (regardless) in the 4th quarter. One cannot say, "b/c it works," b/c it didn't, and it hasn't. Everyone (JVG, Breen, Tim Legler, Barkley, Magic) notices this. They change their approach in the 4th. LBJ presumably allows this to happen (do people really think he doesn't?). Why?
   559. Booey Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:01 AM (#4149691)
I just don't see this kind of analysis about any other player, with the exception of some unhinged Kobe attacks.

Well, no other player has/had a chance to go down as the greatest ever.

Most of these criticisms seem to be in the context of James's legacy, which I think is fair.


Agreed. It's par for the course that the greatest players will always shoulder the greatest criticism when they're not playing up to their abilities. It's probably not fair, but it should at least be expected.
   560. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:05 AM (#4149693)
Because he's a punk, borderline dirty, and people like you always trying to shove him on us. He is also a helluva player in the spotlight, and like I said the other day, I'm enjoying him for the first time ever this series.


I'm not a fan of Rondo, either. As I said above, I think the team's MVP is KG, who I've grown to love. Rondo has moments, and games, and multiple games, where he's brilliant. That sequence in game 4 (I think) where his passing was sharp and overall play stellar was unreal. But, I find him inconsistent, whiny and distracted, his lack of a shot hurts them at times, and he can be dirty. That play where Cole stole the ball epitomizes what I mean: it was partly him being careless, partly his lack of a shot that led to that steal. Another play was the prior game where I thought he gave the ball up too early, again b/c he lacks confidence in his shot. Don't misunderstand: the guy is a unique talent and can carry this team to wins (scary for Miami: he didn't play particularly well last night and Boston won - what's he gonna do at home?). But I also see lots of holes in his game that do hurt the team. Some of them are focus and mental. I have not see KG take a play off this series.
   561. AROM Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:07 AM (#4149694)
Most of these criticisms seem to be in the context of James's legacy, which I think is fair.


That's pretty much it. James is supposed to an all time great. Miami doesn't go anywhere without him, but this team's ceiling is not supposed to be just to give the Celtics some challenging games on their way to the finals. Heck, they aren't even doing that as well as 8 seed Philadelphia did.

I don't want to be here repeating all the memes about how James is unclutch, lacks a killer instinct, afraid to lead, etc. But he's got to give us something to work with.

For all the talk about how bad his supporting cast is, let's just pretend Miami trades for/signs Pietrus, Dooling, and Steimsma. Does anyone think that will turn excuses into victories? Miami needs to somehow get role players into situations where they can make a positive contribution. Either James/Wade have to be able to do work with the guys they bring in, the GM needs to better identify bench players who can help, or they need a new coach.
   562. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:08 AM (#4149696)
I have not see KG take a play off this series.


I've also been amazed by KG. I didn't think he had this kind of energy left. I'm starting to think they'll bring back this team, roughly intact, for another run next year, regardless of the outcome.
   563. Jimmy P Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:11 AM (#4149702)
They change their approach in the 4th. LBJ presumably allows this to happen (do people really think he doesn't?). Why?

Well, this is yet another no-win situation for Lebron. If he goes along with what the coach (and his teflon coated teammate) say, he's weak and not closer. Of course, if he tries and bucks the system and they still lose, he's an uncoachable ass who can't win because he doesn't listen to his coach.

Being an NBA reporter covering the Heat must be a good life. The stories are so easy to write that you get plenty of time to party.
   564. Spivey Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:14 AM (#4149704)
Boston would be crazy to tear down this core until the day KG hangs 'em up.
   565. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:20 AM (#4149708)
Well, this is yet another no-win situation for Lebron. If he goes along with what the coach (and his teflon coated teammate) say, he's weak and not closer. Of course, if he tries and bucks the system and they still lose, he's an uncoachable ass who can't win because he doesn't listen to his coach.


Sure. Of course. And Magic ran off his first coach. And Jordan was famously an A-hole, and Kobe's a dick, and Shaq orchestrates trades. STFW? That's the rarified air LBJ wants and belongs in. I don't think this is just about tropes, though. It's simply about the game: if I'm Spoelstra, the game goes through LBJ; if I'm LBJ, the game goes through me. To change things so radically in the 4th raises questions.
   566. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:21 AM (#4149710)
Boston would be crazy to tear down this core until the day KG hangs 'em up.


Pierce, who I like a lot, seems pretty fried. He jumps like late-version Larry Johnson and moves laterally like current-version Yao.
   567. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:21 AM (#4149711)
Of course, if he tries and bucks the system and they still lose, he's an uncoachable ass who can't win because he doesn't listen to his coach.

No one, aside from a few Baylessian trolls, would be saying that. LBJ needs to stand up and impose his will in the fourth quarter of these big games. Not just occasionally, but all the time. If the stupid sets are being called by Spoelstra, LBJ needs to break them or tell Spoelstra to stop calling them because he wants the ball.

   568. Booey Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:24 AM (#4149717)
Either James/Wade have to be able to do work with the guys they bring in, the GM needs to better identify bench players who can help, or they need a new coach.


The last one. If Phil Jackson is looking to coach again, I wonder if he'd be interested? As a team with all time great players who haven't been able to get it done, Miami seems like exactly the type of team Phil would be interested in pushing over the top.
   569. AROM Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:24 AM (#4149718)
I've also been amazed by KG. I didn't think he had this kind of energy left. I'm starting to think they'll bring back this team, roughly intact, for another run next year, regardless of the outcome.


There really isn't any urgency to bring back Ray Allen. You can offer him a big paycut and if he takes it, you've got a 3 point threat off the bench, and if he doesn't you play Bradley and find another SG as a free agent or in the draft.

Garnett is not replaceable though. As he goes, the team goes. I've seen suggestions on sites like HoopRumors that Garnett might come back at a reduced contract rate. That is insane. He's been the best player in the Eastern Conference playoffs, and while he makes a lot of money this is a league where superstars do not make their free market value.

Now he might decide to take a paycut in order to rig the conference and allow team can try and bring another star in (no idea who). But the idea that Garnett should not deserve max money (certainly with age we aren't talking long term, but 2-3 years) is crazy.
   570. booond Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:25 AM (#4149719)
Chalmers, with his average defense, decent passing, and deep shooting is the perfect type of PG for this team.


Chalmers is a short #2. He makes no decisions on the floor other than to hand the ball to someone and run to his spot. You need a decision-maker. LBJ is the best player on the team but he doesn't want to run the show. Wade wants to run the show but isn't capable. You need a capable person back there who the other four guys lean on to run the game. Until they have that person the 4th quarter is a mish-mash.
   571. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:25 AM (#4149720)
The last one. If Phil Jackson is looking to coach again, I wonder if he'd be interested? As a team with all time great players who haven't been able to get it done, Miami seems like exactly the type of team Phil would be interested in pushing over the top.


If it weren't owned by Riley.
   572. Spivey Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:28 AM (#4149724)
Pierce, who I like a lot, seems pretty fried. He jumps like late-version Larry Johnson and moves laterally like current-version Yao.


Yeah, and I suppose if they can get something for him or were forced to give him a big deal they shouldn't. But Rondo's emerged, and if he can show consistent defensive effort could potentially get even better. Bradley will be back next year. Stiesma actually looks like a player to me. I think they should try to add on rather than rebuild is maybe a more appropriate way to say it.
   573. AROM Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:30 AM (#4149726)
The last one. If Phil Jackson is looking to coach again, I wonder if he'd be interested? As a team with all time great players who haven't been able to get it done, Miami seems like exactly the type of team Phil would be interested in pushing over the top.


What's the dynamic between Riley/Jackson? I really don't know. Is there some sort of professional rivalry there which might make this difficult? Trying to think of proven coaches who could fix this team, I can't think of many. I'm sure there are some great up and coming coaches among the assistant ranks, but Miami is not in a position to experiment like that. The next generation of NBA coaches should look to young teams like New Orleans or something.

The Van Gundys are fine coaches, but I can't see either working for Riley again. I don't think there's a better option than Riley himself.
   574. AROM Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:36 AM (#4149731)
In NBA history, there have been only 5 coaches with more than 2 championships.

Popovich is going nowhere. Phil Jackson is 67, Pat Riley is 66. Red Auerbach is dead.

Surprisingly, according to BB-ref John Kundla is still alive at age 95. Sign him up!

Edit: But be prepared for a lot of 24 second clock violations.
   575. smileyy Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:37 AM (#4149733)
Of course, if he tries and bucks the system and they still lose, he's an uncoachable ass who can't win because he doesn't listen to his coach.


LeBron is bigger than any coach in the NBA, outside of Phil Jackson and Greg Popovich. I also can't see LeBron _not_ working well with either of those two. Not that he'll ever get the chance to.
   576. AROM Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:40 AM (#4149737)
Chalmers is a short #2. He makes no decisions on the floor other than to hand the ball to someone and run to his spot. You need a decision-maker. LBJ is the best player on the team but he doesn't want to run the show. Wade wants to run the show but isn't capable. You need a capable person back there who the other four guys lean on to run the game. Until they have that person the 4th quarter is a mish-mash.


Bulls never had the true #1. Used the PG spot for 3 point shooting specialists. But if Wade/James can't run the offense like Jordan/Pippen did, then they certainly need a different plan.
   577. Booey Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:41 AM (#4149739)
Trying to think of proven coaches who could fix this team, I can't think of many.

The Van Gundys are fine coaches, but I can't see either working for Riley again. I don't think there's a better option than Riley himself.


Jerry Sloan is looking to coach again, and he was even considering the Bobcats, for hells sake. He deserves better than that.
   578. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:42 AM (#4149741)
LBJ can run the offense. We all know that; he's arguably better (much better?) than MJ. The issue is why isn't he in the 4th?
   579. Jimmy P Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:51 AM (#4149748)
What's the dynamic between Riley/Jackson? I really don't know.

Don't know about the personal one, but both are so egotistical that it just wouldn't work. Phil needs to be the center of attention in management, and Riley's the same way. He wants the glory if the team wins. This isn't happening.

The Van Gundys are fine coaches, but I can't see either working for Riley again.

Not a chance. Stan would never do it, and Jeff has been very outspoken about how Stan was treated.

Jerry Sloan is looking to coach again, and he was even considering the Bobcats, for hells sake. He deserves better than that.


This is probably a good option.

LBJ can run the offense. We all know that; he's arguably better (much better?) than MJ. The issue is why isn't he in the 4th?


I honestly think it's because he's following Wade and Spoelstra's direction. Lebron's listening to his coach and a really good friend that's won a title. I think that's what you're seeing. And, for most guys, they be told what good teammates and players they were for doing it.
   580. Fear is Moses Taylor's Bacon Bits Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:52 AM (#4149749)
Chalmers is a short #2. He makes no decisions on the floor other than to hand the ball to someone and run to his spot.

That's going to happen no matter who they put next to Wade/LeBron. See the 90's Bulls for what I mean.

What's the dynamic between Riley/Jackson?

I'd be SHOCKED if Phil agreed to work for him or if Pat even considered asking Phil to work for him.
   581. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 11:58 AM (#4149754)
And, for most guys


Most which guys? Most elite guards with aspirations to be GOATs? Most average guys, sure. Great Cs or PFs, (like Duncan)? Sure. LBJ's not in that class, and doesn't want to be.
   582. Jimmy P Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:00 PM (#4149759)
Most which guys? Most elite guards with aspirations to be GOATs? Most average guys, sure. Great Cs or PFs, (like Duncan)? Sure. LBJ's not in that class, and doesn't want to be.

Name me someone who's gone against their coach, been out front about it, and came out on top in the media.

We know that Jordan and Collins didn't always get along, but Jordan wasn't viewed as the sole reason Collins was fired. And Jordan didn't go out of his way to go against Collins' plan either.

Magic went against his first coach. Of course, Magic was highly criticized for it, too. It's been glossed over in history.
   583. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:03 PM (#4149765)
With regard to the Celtics' future, as fun as this run this year has been, they've exceeded my expectations, and I don't think this performance is repeatable, not with the ever-increasing age factor. Win or lose, they have to make changes. I would not re-up any of the Big Three, not even on a short contract. Build around Rondo, but I'd also be prepared to suck for a year or two to get better draft picks. If they somehow come away with a title this year, and probably even if they don't, I think Ainge would have enough good will from the fan base to sustain him through a rebuilding.
   584. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:05 PM (#4149771)
Name me someone who's gone against their coach, been out front about it, and came out on top in the media.


I take no issue with that. I already conceded it above and named these guys. They were all criticized for being jerks. But, then they won and it's been "glossed over." The media narrative then goes, "it takes an alpha personality to be that great." That's what the media is now questioning.
   585. Jimmy P Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:09 PM (#4149776)
The media narrative then goes, "it takes an alpha personality to be that great." That's what the media is now questioning.

And if they don't win?
   586. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:11 PM (#4149782)
Then they remain ########. 2nd-tier players, but 1st-rate ########. What's your point?
   587. andrewberg Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:12 PM (#4149783)
Robin/Hombre- I now fully understand how you feel when we psychoanalyze Kobe.

   588. Jimmy P Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:13 PM (#4149785)
Then they remain ########. 2nd-tier players, but 1st-rate ########. What's your point?


Lebron isn't that way. Either he's not a real #######, or he doesn't want to be viewed as one.

And, I think that's he's been taught that you do what coach says. He was that way in Cleveland, too. He never bashed Brown, and no one would've disagreed with him if he did.
   589. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:13 PM (#4149786)
Not a chance. Stan would never do it, and Jeff has been very outspoken about how Stan was treated.


Is the Jeff part true? I've heard him, on multiple occasions, say that people don't know what they're talking about and that Stan had legitimate reasons for stepping away. I've never believed it, but he's definitely said it.
   590. jmurph Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:14 PM (#4149788)
Robin/Hombre- I now fully understand how you feel when we psychoanalyze Kobe.


Ditto, man, ditto. You guys are probably laughing your asses off reading through this.
   591. andrewberg Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:27 PM (#4149798)
Lebron needs to be more productive, comfortable.

Lebron needs to not drink too much.

Lebron needs regular exercise at the gym.

Lebron needs to get along better with his teammates and put them at ease.

Lebron needs to eat well- no more microwave dinners and saturated fats.

Lebron needs to be a patient, better driver.

Lebron needs to sleep well- no bad dreams, no paranoia.

Lebron needs to be kinder to all animals.

Lebron needs to keep in contact with old friends.

Lebron needs to be no longer empty and frantic.
   592. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:31 PM (#4149803)
Andrew:

Maybe I'm missing the point, but I'm asking a question about why the strategy changes in the 4th. Is that speculative or silly? I'm interested in it.
   593. Dandy Little Glove Man Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:33 PM (#4149806)
Why is everyone talking about the Heat's 4th quarter offense last night as if it was their downfall? That was their most effective quarter offensively since maybe game 2. LeBron was hot in the first half and shouldered the load but cold in the second half, so Wade tried to take over in the 4th and did so pretty well. As rr said, the optics of LeBron being passive are bad for his legacy, but that's not why the Heat lost.

The Heat lost because, for the last 15 minutes, they couldn't get a stop to save their lives. The Celtics scored 40 points in the final 15 minutes of the game (including only 4 points due to intentional fouls late, which can sometimes distort the numbers). After Wade went to the bench late in the 3rd, the Heat were outscored 11-0 to end the quarter, with Stiemsma, Dooling, and Pietrus scoring 8 of those 11 points. Boston's offense consistently outhustled Miami's defense late in the game, leading to transition scores and open looks. I think team-wide lethargic defense, which certainly included LeBron but was not by any means limited to him, is much more to blame for the loss than any passivity on offense.
   594. Spivey Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:40 PM (#4149813)
LeBron was too wrapped up in The Hunger Games and couldn't concentrate on the game.
   595. Fourth True Outcome Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:41 PM (#4149814)
Pierce, who I like a lot, seems pretty fried. He jumps like late-version Larry Johnson and moves laterally like current-version Yao.

This seems to be forgetting that he's playing with a sprained MCL. I don't know how serious it is, but it's the sort of thing that only truly heals with rest, and he hasn't had the opportunity to rest since it happened. If he moves like this next year, I'm going to get worried, but the lack of lateral movement and hops sure seems to be more injury-based than age-related.

With regard to the Celtics' future, as fun as this run this year has been, they've exceeded my expectations, and I don't think this performance is repeatable, not with the ever-increasing age factor. Win or lose, they have to make changes.


I could not disagree more. Bring back KG, period. The man is playing out of his mind, and I see no reason why he couldn't continue to do so for 2-4 years, barring injury. He quarterbacks the defense, hits jumpers on offense, and is absolutely the Celtics' MVP. His plus/minus numbers for the playoffs are silly good. I don't really see why this isn't repeatable. They're winning on their defense, which they'll have as long as they have KG and Rivers, and Rondo running an offense based on whoever is hitting shots that night. They're doing it despite Pierce not being 100%, despite Allen being limited with bone spurs, and despite not having at least one big man they planned to have and Avery Bradley. You don't think they could be this good next year if KG comes back, Ray comes back or is replaced by Bradley and a backup, and they get a big who's better than Stiemsma to push him into Ryan Hollins' minutes? Everything centers on the Big Ticket. You keep this team and core centered on him as long as he's willing to play.

As for the LeBron stuff, I think part of this is that everyone looks bad losing, and part is that Wade is the wrong teammate for him. They both dominate the ball, and we know LeBron respects the hell out of Wade. If LeBron were willing to blow Wade off to run 4th quarters, they would be a better team. But Wade clearly thinks he's the closer, and LBJ (and Spo) either buy into that (I think LeBron at least partly does) or aren't willing to buck him. He's a winner with a ring, after all, and Jimmy P was right to call him teflon-coated. He pulls their offense away from LeBron in ways that undermine LeBron. I get that LeBron is complicit in this, but it's not like there aren't reasons why. Wade did lead his team to a ring, after all. I think the Heat would be a better team with a non-Wade wing that was less of an alpha. Less skill overlap would be good too, but I really think the two alphas thing is the biggest issue, especially because Spo doesn't seem capable of bring Wade in line, if he's even trying.
   596. JC in DC Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:49 PM (#4149823)
This seems to be forgetting that he's playing with a sprained MCL.


I did forget that.
   597. Yardape Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:51 PM (#4149825)
If LeBron were willing to blow Wade off to run 4th quarters, they would be a better team. But Wade clearly thinks he's the closer, and LBJ (and Spo) either buy into that (I think LeBron at least partly does) or aren't willing to buck him. He's a winner with a ring, after all, and Jimmy P was right to call him teflon-coated.


I think this is what the coach-killing discussion is missing: LeBron may also risk alienating Wade. We know that James is better than Wade, but the Heat may operate under the fiction that they're equal, and James taking over might upset the team dynamic. Of course, he might be better off doing so anyway, and then again this could all be wrong and there are other reasons for what's happened. Or no reasons.
   598. Eddo Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:51 PM (#4149826)
As for the LeBron stuff, I think part of this is that everyone looks bad losing, and part is that Wade is the wrong teammate for him. They both dominate the ball, and we know LeBron respects the hell out of Wade. If LeBron were willing to blow Wade off to run 4th quarters, they would be a better team.

Agreed. Others have pointed out that the 90s Bulls had a similar construction - two all-time great wings, no real point guard; that worked so well because Jordan was willing to alienate teammates by (deservedly, obviously) acting like he was the absolute best player on the court in fourth quarters.

I think the Heat would be a better team with a non-Wade wing that was less of an alpha. Less skill overlap would be good too, but I really think the two alphas thing is the biggest issue, especially because Spo doesn't seem capable of bring Wade in line, if he's even trying.

It's weird to say this(*), but it just might be true. It's why Moses's Bosh/Wade for Howard/Anderson/Richardson/Reddick idea is so intriguing (to me, at least).

(*) EDIT: Weird to say that a team might be better off without a current top-five player.
   599. Jimmy P Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:53 PM (#4149829)
Agreed. Others have pointed out that the 90s Bulls had a similar construction - two all-time great wings, no real point guard;

But, Pippen didn't dominate the ball, or need to.
   600. booond Posted: June 06, 2012 at 12:54 PM (#4149830)
That's going to happen no matter who they put next to Wade/LeBron. See the 90's Bulls for what I mean.


Except, these are different players with different skills and personalities. There is no Jordan, Bird, or, even Kobe, on the floor. They need someone to control the flow of the game; neither LBJ nor Wade are willing or capable. Outside of that, trade Wade, who doesn't mesh well with LBJ, and get a better complement to LBJ.
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Demarini, Easton and TPX Baseball Bats

 

 

 

 

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