1) "Okay, guys - last week we lost to the Heat in Miami when, on the last play of the game, we left Ray Allen open in the corner, KJ James found him with a pass, and Corey Brewer ran into Allen 3 seconds after he drained a triple for a four point play. I think we've got this one - we've cut a 19 point lead down to 1, and their most clutch shooter, Mario 'Emcee' Chalmers, is out with a bruised triceps, which their play-by-play guy, Eric Reid, misdiagnosed as a bruised biceps. Just as a side note, guys, Memphis Grizzlies play-by-play announcer Pete Pranica never would make a mistake like that. Anyways, we've got all the momentum, and there's only 50 seconds left. All we have to do is crowd KJ James, and make him give the ball up on a 35 foot diagonal pass to Norris Cole spotting up in the left corner for 3. He's been forced to play the whole second half because of Chalmers' injury, he's been terrible, and there is absolutely no way - I repeat, absolutely NO WAY - he rises up and drops a triple to end our night. Don't even guard him - even when he catches it, don't even run at him! We got this! Ready? Nuggets on 3 - 1, 2, 3: Nuggets!................Uh-oh..."
2) Best win of the season for Miami. Second night of a back-to-back, traveling backwards a time zone, Dwyane Wade out for preventative maint- ummm, I mean, a sprained ankle, at altitude, against a good team - it is a game nobody wins, every player on every team looks at this game on the schedule and knows it is a loss. Except you know who doesn't look at this game on the schedule and know it's a loss? Shane Battier! You know why? He doesn't even read the schedule, he's too busy reading books - NERD! Annnndddd, he was awesome tonight! He took 7 shots, all of them threes, and made 6! He blocked 2 shots, and drew 3 huge offensive fouls. His triple from the high left wing off a random broken-play pass from KJ when the Heat was struggling to score was the biggest shot of the game. After the game, Jax asked him how it felt taking those charges, and Battier told him that he was too old for that stuff, that he would enjoy his day off in Phoenix tomorrow, and not to worry because, "I'll put on my full body compression suit for the flight and nerd out reading 'Soccernomics,' a book about statistical analysis in international football."
3) KJ James took a beating tonight, he kept kept getting hit in the head. Constantine Kostas (or whatever) got him, then JaVale McGee got him (JaGee McVale), then Kenneth Faried got him a couple of times, then Corey Brewer hit him up high with an intentional forearm. Yet, he shot only 6 free throws, and 2 were end-of-the-game intentional foul free throws. It was a super-odd night of officiating, and KJ was mad all night long, and he is rarely mad. He was maddest of all with 1:30 to go and the Heat clinging to a lead, when he tried to throw a pocket bounce pass down the lane to a cutting Chris Bosh, and from behind Andre Miller kicked and half-volleyed the pass to another Nugget and they went down and dunked it to cut the lead to 1. Hard to believe none of the 3 refs saw that - super-great kick by Miller, though, not easy to control a bouncing ball with your foot like that. In any case, KJ James was his usual great self - he scored 27 points, 7 rebounds, 3 blocks, including a key rejection of the very annoying Kenneth Faried (it's a long season, kid, calm the heck down). Most of all, though, with Wade out, he controlled the ball, got the floor spaced correctly, and fired lasers to shooters - 13 assists, most of them for triples, including the big one to Cole, several of Battier's 6, and most of Mike Mil-lar's 4 (4-8 for Mil-lar, starting in place of Wade). Miami made 13-27 threes - KJ is so good at seeing the right pass, and then has the size and strength and athleticism to deliver it. So good. So, so good.
4) Big jinx matchup tonight: the reverse jinx versus the three point jinx. I correctly identified that, statistically-speaking, very few teams win a game thusly scheduled in Denver. You could look it up, that's absolutely true, but it's also absolutely true that I mentioned it in last night's blog totally believing in my ability to reverse-jinx us to a win. GFOB (Great Friend of the Blog) Snets recognized it, and called me on it via email - I saw it at halftime, when we were up by 12, I laughed, and then told him, "we have no shot!" Seems like a no brainer, right? Seems like that's going to work every time. Except, don't forget the absolutely brutal three point jinx Miami has working against it this season, in which guys who are absolutely the worst shooters in captivity turn into, well, Ray Allen against us. Tonight in the second quarter Denver inserted little used Jordan Hamilton into the game. How little used was Jordan Hamilton before tonight's game? Well, he hadn't made a three pointer all season. And so, of course, instantly, he dropped in three straight bombs. Why wouldn't he? Late in the game, perhaps the worst three point shooter in the NBA, Andre Miller, made two end-of-the-shot-clock, flat-footed, shoulder-sling swishes from deep which looked like would be enough to sink the Heat. Except it wasn't enough, it couldn't overcome the original reverse jinx! Oops - I did it again! You're welcome, Heat fans!
5) Ummm - duhhhh!
Mario Chalmers is Voted “Sexiest Man from Alaska”15Nov
Congrats to Mario Chalmers on being named People Magazine’s “Sexiest Man from Alaska” in their “United States of Sexy” segment of the annual Sexiest Man Alive Edition. That’s a lot of sexy in one sentence. The 26 year old member of the Miami Heat helped the team win the 2012 NBA Championship this year and is originally from Anchorage, Alaska.
6) A Sort-of Word That Seems Kind of Harmless In General, But Which Girls, Ummm, Women, Don't Like When It Is Used to Describe Them: Turnstile-y
Well, we have a night off tomorrow, and Saturday's game against Phoenix starts a little earlier, at 9am. Thank goodness. This is the Heat's longest road trip of the season, 6 games in 9 nights, and I'm already exhausted. Not too sure how the players feel about it - ask Shane Battier, he seems to know everything. If you need me before Saturday, look for me out in the Everglades, I'm going out there Saturday morning with The Captain on his schooner The Tiramisu. See you Saturday night, Alaskans!