Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Heat 98 Cavaliers 95

6 Thoughts

1) Well, you don't see that every day.  Which part?  EVERY PART!  HOLY CRAPOLA, 24!  LET IT FLY!!!

2) Good, I got that out of my system...First of all, this game was delayed nearly 40 minutes because Cleveland's owner, the buffoonish Dan Gilbert, apparently is too cheap to pay for a scoreboard that doesn't leak lighter fluid all over the court during pregame warmups.  I know the economy is bad in the Midwest, but Jesus - you don't even have a scoreboard that works?  The referees huddled, and here's how they tried to fix the leak: by squinting up into the rafters and pointing at the source of the offending drip for several minutes.  Finally, someone figured out to lower the scoreboard down from the ceiling and try to plug up the gusher.  During the delay, KJ James spent a lot of time talking to teammates, the refs, even people in the crowd, and his hand gestures appeared to be telling them exactly what would make a scoreboard leak, and how you would fix that.  Listen, I spent two years being shocked when KJ knew anything non-basketball related.  By this point, I give in: if he says he knows how to fix the leak, I believe him.  Anyways, that was a bizarre beginning to the game, but at least no fans ran onto the court...Oh, later, yes, then a fan did run onto the court - no, there didn't appear to be any security,  why would there be?  The Heat's security director, David Holcombe, had to run on to the court and grab the guy.  The fan told KJ that he missed him and wanted him to come back to Cleveland, and KJ smiled and patted him on the head, like a dog.  "I didn't have much time to talk to him before they took him away," shrugged KJ.  What were the odds a douchey fan was going to run onto the court during this road trip, and it wasn't going to be in Boston?!!!  Quite an operation Dan Gilbert and the Cavaliers are running...

3) But that paled in comparison to the game itself.  The Cavs came flying out of the gate, without their three best players (Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters, and Anderson Varejo) and blew the doors of Miami.  They got to the rim; they made jumpers; they blocked shots.  The Heat looked like they were playing in quicksand.  They couldn't get stops, they couldn't make shots.  At halftime the Cavs led by 21...It didn't feel over - Miami is so much better than this Cleveland group that 21 felt doable - but then the second half started and it was more of the same.  When Dwyane Wade politely fouled Tyler Zeller on a three point play with just under 8 minutes to go, to put the Cavs up 27, then it seemed over.  Wayyy over.  To that point in the game, no Heat player had either run, or jumped, let alone take some kind of running start then jumped.  And you know what?  It felt okay.  It was disappointing that the streak was going to end, but if it was going to end, at least it was just going to end because the Heat absolutely didn't have it.  That happens to every team in this league, no matter who you play against.  It was predictable, but the complete lack of energy and competence was, in its utter totality, surprising (even though logically you knew it had to happen at some point).

4) And then Shane Battier made back to back triples.  And the Heat got a couple of stops.  And then M.Minutos took her hoodie and flipped the hood up - hood up is "emergency comeback mode."  You don't talk about it, you just do it.  Then Mario "Emcee" Chalmers (17 points on 5-8) made a couple of hoops, then KJ scored a couple of hoops, the Cavs went cold, then Battioke drained another triple, then Ray Allen hit a bomb, and all of a sudden, the lead was 6.  A Daniel Gibson buzzer-beater sent the lead back to 9 after three, but by that point it felt over - in Miami's favor!  Didn't seem like there was any way the Cavs were going to be able to hold off Miami.  And the fourth quarter started with a runout where Chalmers threw an "alley-oop" into KJ's waist, but KJ recovered the loose ball, then put it back into the basket; then he made a triple, then he made a 26 foot bomb, and from the 7:40 mark of the third quarter to the 9:30 mark of the fourth quarter - 10 minutes of game-time - Miami had erased the entire 27 point deficit and led by 1.  Ummm, ballgame.  By the way, that's utterly insane.  KJ never really played efficiently, but he still finished with a triple-double: 25 points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists (kept finding Allen for open triples in the fourth quarter), and 2 huge blocks coming down the stretch.  It wasn't his best game, but it was one of his most willful games.  Other guys contributed: Allen, Battioke, Chalmers all made three triples each (Ray also somehow had 5 steals - the Cavs kept throwing the ball right to him in the 4th quarter), but the image I'll remember most from the game was a late possession where KJ grabbed an offensive rebound, got hammered, missed the putback, got it back with yellow shirts just bouncing off him from every angle, got fouled again - this time they called it - and came flying out of the pack squeezing the ball so hard that I thought it was going to explode.  Man possessed.  Had Jason Terry been on the Cavs, KJ probably would have killed him again with another dunk.  It was quite a sight.  Streak lives.

5) The Cavs owner may be one of the bigger tools in the NBA (you could argue he's the whole toolshed, and it would be hard to dispute you); their scoreboard is a ticking time bomb; and they apparently do not employ security at their games.  But at least they have the only coach in the NBA who appears to be taking PEDs!  You think this is Byron Scott's bedroom?  Like, he has a big photo montage of himself in his playing days on his bedroom wall, and he poses in front of it every year for the team press guide?  "Byron, this time we could take a picture of you on the court or something," "I said NO!"

6) I rarely like to use this space to air my personal grievances, but this is a personal frustration that's been irritating me the last couple of days. Over at Dos Minutos International Headquarters, we deal with people from all over the world - hence the "international" in our title. You know who the most aggravating people to deal with are? People from New York. Not people from Manhattan, they are fine. I mean people from like, Yonkers, the Bronx, etc. I'm not great at geography, but I think they call those the "boroughs." It's like trying to speak to cave people who have just acquired verbal communication skills. They aren't, like, totally confident in language yet, it's like, they would feel a lot better if they could take a piece of charred stick from the community fire and draw out what they are trying to communicate on the wall of their cave. I have had six conversations in the past three days with a dude from one of the boroughs and it goes like this every time:
Him: So she and I did it, maybe it wasn't the best, but that's what we did.
Me: I understand.
Him: Maybe it wasn't the best, but that's what we did, you know, we felt that's what we had to do.
Me: Right, I got it. I totally understand what you are saying, and I have dealt with this exact type of situation before.
Him: You know what I am saying? Maybe we could have done something else, but we didn't, this is the way we did it, we thought, for us, this is what we should do, and that's what we did.
Me: Wait - what did you do?
Soooo frustrating. Hey, half-wit: I GOT IT! I hate dealing with "those people," I would rather live in Hell, or Scranton, than in one of those boroughs. Although, the Captain pointed out, "How do you know he doesn't hang up the phone and tell his wife, 'I have to tell this kid everything six times before he gets it.'"
By the way, that caller from the boroughs? Puff Daddy. No lie.
The long road trip is over.  Back home on Friday to play Detroit.  If you need me before then, I'll be at Dos Minutos Int'l HQs talking to more people from New York's boroughs...You know, I'll be at the HQs talking to people from the boroughs...Yeah, I'm not saying you'll need me, but I'll be talking to people from the boroughs over at the HQs....Yo, you know, if need me, I'll be..........