Miami win Game 2, just.

     An article written after the game was titled, “Miami tie the series, barely”. I wrote in my previous two blogs about how Miami would have to be almost perfect in order the beat Oklahoma. They had to play to their fullest potential. This is exactly what happened and it was only just good enough against a less-than good Oklahoma side. Erik Spoelstra said in his pre-game speech “every play matters, the game will come down to 5 plays.” He was right. If Fisher would have made that wide open 3, if Westbrook drained any of the missed jumpers he put up in the 1st, if OKC missed two less free throws…
It’s very easy to look at each individual play, especially when games often finish with a points difference of under 7 or 8 points. However, this is a 48 minute sport, and for 36 of those, Miami were much better. We know that OKC like to stay within striking distance before taking over in the 4th, they were just too late in reaching their “striking distance”.
Miami went up 18-2.
18-2.
They were much more fired up than Oklahoma. Everything that needed to happen for the Heat to win, happened.
Lebron had another fantastic shooting night, finishing on 32 and making 4 clutch points at the end of the game. Wade stepped up 24 points and Bosh finished with 16. 72 points all together, 5 more than their regular season average of 67. This was not where they won the game as Durant, Westbrook and Harden finished collectively with 80. The big three will consistently cancel each other out. Harden stepped up in game 2 just as Wade and Bosh did. No, Miami did not win because of the shooting from their big three, they won because of two more important reasons:

1) Shane Battier’s 17 points. 
Battier has suddenly become the best 3 point shooter in all the land. He is 10-13 from 3 pointers in the Finals so far with no signs of letting up. It makes me worry about the IQ of some basketball players. To consistently leave Battier open from 3, do they even learn? Battier stepped up as the “supporting player” in Game 2 like Collison and Sefolosha did in Game 1 for Oklahoma. His 17 points were the difference. Although you have to think, will he keep shooting about 75% from 3’s for the rest of the finals? Probably not. Which means Chalmers or Haslem have to step up and score more than 3 or 2 points respectively as they did in Game 2.

2) OKC’s fast-break points – 7
They had 24 fast-break points in Game 1 as they found it very easy to abuse the defensive slack of Wade and Chalmers. The 7 fast-break points they had in Game 2 was not only far less than the 24 in Game 1, but they all came in the 4th quarter. They caused 5 turnovers, had 8 more shots and out-rebounded Miami….only in the 4th quarter.

Durant said it perfectly in his post game interview, “we can’t get too down [about the missed shots in the 1st] instead stay positive and understand what can be changed for Game 3.”

That is exactly what they must do. Understand what needs to be changed, because there isn’t much. Miami had to break their backs to get the Game 2 win and they were playing against an OKC side that didn’t show up for the whole of the first 12 minutes.

Let’s not forget the game-tying shot Durant had where he was clearly fouled by Lebron.

That said, Miami did deserve to win Game 2 but it took them far more effort than I thought it would.

My friend told me he thinks OKC will find it difficult to beat Miami at their home arena since they are so efficient at home. However, if Miami can beat OKC in Oklahoma, then OKC can certainly beat Miami in South Beach, especially with their 21-12 record on the road.

Advertisements

2 responses to this post.

  1. To further make your point about Shane Battier, two of his big-time 3-pointers came right off the bat during that 18-2 run. It’ll be interesting to see if the Heat can have more than nine points from the Shane and those other three celebrities. As OKC has shown, they have the ability to overcome all sorts of deficits. However, this time, they ran themselves into the ground too early. Now, for the rest of this series, I can confidentially say either team could take it this point forward. You bring up the great point about OKC’s 21-12 road record. Honestly, I think both of these teams don’t necessarily need their home crowds to play well. Both teams can win anywhere if they (moreso, each respective Big 3) play to their full potential. If anything, the young Thunder play off their crowd. That Heat crowd will not play that much of a factor going forward as many of them will show up late to the game… and as for the clear foul on LeBron (don’t tell me it was a “ticky-tack” foul), it’s coincidentally been like that since Wade smacked Rondo in the face. I don’t know how to explain it, but calls in the Heat’s favor late in games somehow keeps happening. Anyway, I enjoy your blog! You have solid facts to back up your writing. Keep ’em coming!

    Reply

    • Thanks a lot for reading it man i really appreciate it, you too! I hope these finals don’t get remembered for some BS calls..
      I agree that the home crowd doesn’t play as much of a part as most people think. It’s obviously an advantage and will be a huge advantage for Game 7 if we get that far, but for now, there are a lot issues at hand that are going to decide this incredible series.

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: