Saturday, June 8, 2013
Friday, June 7, 2013
Game 1 of the 2013 NBA Finals went down last night, and boy was it a doozie! In one of the best Finals games I've ever seen, both teams played very solid basketball, and neither team led by double digits. After the Spurs went up by 7 very early, Miami would take control, and lead for most of the first half. Actually they would lead for most of the game, but only by a handful of points. Each team would make runs, and show superior energy, and then the other would counter with something just as exciting. Kawhi Leonard did a great job on LeBron for most of the night, as he only had 18 points on 7 of 16 shooting, but amassed 18 rebounds as well. Completing his third career Finals triple-double, he also had 10 assists. The problem is no other Heat player had more than 5 boards, nor more than 4 assists.
Shots fell for them for a while, but when it came down to the 4th quarter, well.. the Spurs defense cranked it up a few notches, and Tony Parker seemed to take over the game. Wade had 17, and Allen & Bosh each scored 13, but Miami critically turned it over 4 times in the 4th quarter, as well. The Spurs on the other hand had only 4 turnovers all game (tied an NBA Finals record), and along with Miami's 8, the total of 12 turnovers SET a new NBA Finals record.
San Antonio held Miami to 16 in the 4th quarter, and were able to score 23 themselves. So after trailing by 1 for a quarter, and then by 3 at both the half and 3rd quarter break, the Spurs were able to finally take the lead mid-4th. In back-to-back possessions a LeBron turnover led to a sweet Tony Parker spin move for a layup, to go up by 5. Then Ray Allen was fouled on a 3-pt. attempt by Danny Green, who had 4 threes of his own. Allen sunk them all, but on the ensuing possession, Tony dribbled-out the clock on a broken play, but hit a turn-around bank shot, under the block of LeBron, with less than half of 0.1 showing on the shot clock.
Literally by a fingertip, the Spurs led by 4 with 5 seconds to go, and held on for the 92-88 win. Tony Parker finished with 21 points on 9 of 18 shooting, 6 assists, and no turnovers in 40 minutes of Finals basketball. Duncan's hot 2nd quarter paved the way for 20 points of his own on 8 of 19 shooting, and he also grabbed 14 rebounds. Manu, Danny Green, and Kawhi Leonard added 13, 12, and 10 respectively.
Here's ESPN's game-1 box score..
Game-2 is Sunday night at 7pm - again in Miami.
Monday, June 3, 2013
...and I can't friggin' wait!
Yeah I forgot to come back and finish up the results of the Spurs/Memphis series, but it's only because that series seemed like a cake-walk compared to the Golden State series. Once we were up 2-0, I knew if we could stay in game-3, we'd have a great chance to win it. Likewise I also knew that if we stole game-3, it was soon to be over. There was no doubt in my mind, after what happened last year, that Pop and company was about to give them ANY chance whatsoever to come back.
Now, it's LeBron vs. Kawhi.   Wade vs. Green.   Chalmers vs. Mr. Tony Parker.   Bosh vs. Splitter.   Haslem and Birdman vs. Timmy Duncan.   Spoelstra vs. the King, Gregg Popovich.
Yeah the King in this series is not LeBron James, it's Coach Pop. He has an answer for everything. I think you'll see the key to the entire series is gonna be Pop's adjustments on the different things the Heat try to throw at us. In addition to that, I believe our team is deeper. Yeah they have several shooters. If there's one tiny achilles heel in Pop's system, it's that the one thing he has a hard time stopping is teams who shoot well from the outside. But isn't that just the way it is? Most coaches are gonna have a very difficult time stopping a team who has great games due to high-percentage outside shooting. Mike Miller, Ray Allen, Shane Battier, and perhaps Norris Cole could give us trouble for a few minutes. However there exists several Spurs players not named Parker-Ginobili-Duncan-Leonard-Splitter who will certainly contribute solid minutes.
Danny Green is a starter, anyway, not Manu, so there's that. Boris Diaw, Matt Bonner, Patty Mills, Cory Joseph, DeJuan Blair, Nando DeColo, Tracy McGrady, Aaron Baynes....... Let's just say Pop will have plenty of fouls, and fresh legs for the Heat. Oh yeah, and also plenty of threes.
Schedule source: ESPN.com