Monday, April 25, 2011

Stayin Alive!

I spent the second part of Easter Sunday, (After church of course and a visit with my daughter and grandchildren) watching three Basketball games and a snippet of the Phillies game against the Padres. The Phillies are in first place currently and had won the past two games against the Padres, So I wasn't worried about them. I was however determined to be a loyal Sixers fan to the very end... I'm not some bandwagon guy...I don't root for my team when they're in first place and abandon them (and wear some other team's colors) when my team is doing bad.

The Philadelphia 76ers aren't bad....They improved this year and they are in the playoffs mind you.  Many other teams are not still playing.  The Philadelphia 76ers are not GOOD either...Not good enough to beat the new improved Miami Heat of Lebron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh in a four game series either! Never the less..I said that I would watch this last game and see my Sixers mercifully put out of their misery...After all...they were down, 3-0 in a series even they didn't expect to win.  I'm sure Lebron and company already had their bags packed and were ready for the winner of Boston - New York.....

Not so fast!   Yesterday...the Sixers won....86-82.....Put a quarter in the meter and park right there...The Sixers won ,86-82...Savor it...

They failed to sweep a pesky and resilient Philadelphia 76ers team.In allowing the Sixers to win 86-82 yesterday, The Miami Heat showed that the challenges awaiting them once they earn a shot at the Boston Celtics will be as much about the confounding issues they've yet to do away with of their own as the threat the Boston Celtics pose.

This is supposedly a Miami Heat team capable of being so great that no deficit is insurmountable. It's also a Miami Heat team so capable of those letdowns that few leads ever feel safe, I'm just saying.

I mean look, The Heat trailed by 16 points in the second quarter, then the Heat rattled off a 22-2 run with such power and confidence that they looked every bit like the best team in the NBA, like winning that Trophy in June was just a forgone conclusion.

The Problem was, the surge of greatness in the first half led to the dizzying display of frailty at the game's end: With 1:34 left, Miami held a six-point lead and a sure sweep in its grasp....but wait a minute...They then allowed the young 76ers to run off ten straight points and beat them 86-82...just like that!!!

Lebron was shocked! Dwayne Wade looked like he needed a laxative, Chris Bosh looked like he wanted to cry...and somewhere, Charles Barkley (who predicted a sweep) was shaking his head...Me? I was overjoyed!

The Heat found away to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory as my old high school coach used to tell the football team routinely!

Evan Turner hit a floater. Mario Chalmers missed a 3-point attempt for the sixth time. Jrue Holiday froze Dwyane Wade and dropped his own three. Wade missed a jumper, and suddenly Lou Williams was dropping another three that shifted the series back to Miami. Not that it had to be that way.

Down two points, the Heat broke from a timeout with 8.1 seconds left. The ball went to LeBron James -- not Wade -- and The Chosen One took it strong to the hole. But one Elton Brand blocked shot later, the game was as good as over.

"We've been doing so much better with our execution down the stretch of close games and we have incredible confidence in our defense to be able to close teams out," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said.

So, in not closing out the Philadelphia 76ers,The Miami Heat showed all the flaws that could hinder this team's big dreams and stunning collection of talent -- its poor point-guard play; its lackadaisical starts to key games; too often turning to LeBron James when Dwayne Wade should be the go-to guy with the game on the line; a poor starting lineup that gets outplayed; and, again, Chris Bosh shrinking in big games.

Now either The Miami Heat fix the problems,and real soon, or they can get ready for some off season fishing and golf. Because coming soon are other championship-caliber teams (Celtics, Bulls, Lakers) that will pounce on any weakness Miami bares.
Believe me...they are all watching this series.

That all said...I don't believe the Sixers can win this series..They are too far behind..but it was nice to get one win...It is nice to still be playing...(I'll bet New York Knicks fans would love to still be playing right now.) Somewhere in the background I keep hearing the Bee Gees singing "Stayin Alive"


James Perkins said...

It was a good game...You're right..The Sixers did expose a lot of the Heat's weaknesses.

Angie B. said...



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