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Just overheard on Lakers Live post-game ... (Laker tv analyst) Norm Nixon suggesting Miami would be the "easiest" team to beat on LA's 3-game (MIA, CHA, ORL) road trip.
Golden State NBDLers were just the latest opponent to convert 51% of their FGAs for most of the night. It'll be a short -- VERY short -- night if Miami defends LA's varsity the same way.
MW - "[T]he Heat shut it for good when Arroyo hit two foul shots and came away with a clutch steal...[and] the truth is that Carlos Arroyo has been the best option of the bunch. Was when he got here." --- Best OFFENSIVE option, true enough. Defensively, Arroyo's still -- on most nights -- what he "was when he got here." El Matador. Turnstile. The levy that turned New Orleans into Wet n Wild. Example. That "steal" should've been a dunk by Turiaf had Turiaf not flubbed Curry's lob after Curry shed Arroyo on a pick and roll. Carlos was trailing and behind Turiaf when Rony LITERALLY dropped the ball in Arroyo's lap. Fisher won't be a problem. But he'll be chasing plenty against the Lakers. Too bad they're not as generous.
The WORST reason for playoff panic is the SAME reason feeding playoff panic: Players NOT focused on execution & opponents, players TOO distracted by everything else. The ONLY thing Heat players should be studying are the Warriors and/or how best to beat them Tuesday. Teams worried about seeding, how many wins they need, how many losses they can afford, who's chasing what, who's catching whom are teams NOT focused on winning every night, ibid THESE Miami Heat. Chumps.
Toggle Commented Mar 2, 2010 on 10 Reasons for Playoff Panic at Heat Check
Tho I'd include QRich among guys who don't back down. He's playing hurt (thigh). Haslem too, I suspect.
Toggle Commented Mar 1, 2010 on Wade Set To Return Vs. Magic at Heat Check
Ditto.
Toggle Commented Mar 1, 2010 on Wade Set To Return Vs. Magic at Heat Check
Shhhh. Don't bother The Beaz. He's focused. Concentrating. Working hard. Counting touches & shots is a formidable task. With your fingers & toes.
Toggle Commented Mar 1, 2010 on Wade Set To Return Vs. Magic at Heat Check
3 signs of irrelevance. 1. The Charlotte Bobcats steal your playoff spot by doing nothing. You mutter, "Must be effin magic." For once you are right. 2. ESPN trots out "Doris Burke" a.k.a. Bride of Frankenstein, for your nationally televised thrashing. Real ball grrls, including Pam Ward & Cheryl Miller, decline. 3. Jackie, Tito, Jermaine & Marlon sue Barkley for defamation. Judge Judy, watching Saturday's debacle followed by Sunday's destruction, doubles the award. *** 3 steps to sobriety (or at least mild self-respect). 1. BENCH BEASLEY, start Haslem (ugh). I'm no fan of UD but Beasley is clearly hurting himself and the team as he struggles to find a groove. MB was more effective last year coming off the bench -- against opposing non-starters. Worse, he's still CLUELESS, perhaps hopelessly so. MB: "It's frustrating when you're not doing what you're capable of ... I really didn't get the shots, didn't get the touches." Yeah. And who's fault is that? Spo? Wade? Hate-your-point-guard du jour? Or could it possibly be the TOOL who picked up 4 fouls in 18 mins, converted ONLY 11 of 47 FGAs (23%) while averaging a WUSSY 5 rpg as Miami's "go to" guy over the last 4 games? HMMMM? 2. Offensively & halfcourt-wise, JERMAINE, JERMAINE, JERMAINE. Even and in fact, Jermaine before Dwyane. O'Neal strokes far too many js for a big to my liking. But O'Neal *IS* converting a career-BEST Heat-BEST *54%* of his FGAs overall. Yet, O'Neal only averages 10 FGAs per game -- 3rd behind Wade (20 @ 47%) and Beasley (14 @ 46%). Run the offense through this O'Neal just like the last O'Neal and see what happens. If JO'Neal maintains his efficiency as a halfcourt hub, everyone benefits, especially Wade. Otherwise, go Go GO for early offense at EVERY opportunity. Can it get any worse? Winning is ALL about percentages. Ask Riley. Can Spo add? Earth to Spo? 2b. MAGLOIRE BEFORE ANTHONY. Yes, Cat's a foul magnet but he provides more boards, changes more shots (without blocks), has much better hands than Jo-el. The Heat can't afford to waste games OR possessions on Mutombo's mini-me (Anthony). 3. CUT SOMEONE. Any one. Release 2 if you can. If that doesn't send a message, spell it out. Nothing is written (yet). You're ALL (Wade excepted) playing for jobs. You have 22 games to audition starting NOW.
Toggle Commented Mar 1, 2010 on Wade Set To Return Vs. Magic at Heat Check
Winderbag - "The zone was back in healthy doses, but defense hardly is the greatest current concern." --- Will someone PLEASE cap this dude? Watching the Heat is bad enough. But a decade into his beat assignment, this clown STILL doesn't have a clue. Then again, there IS a certain symmetry to clowns covering clowns. Owners who love clowns. Q & As by clowns for clowns ... Too bad we're NOT clowning around. The Bucks shot 50+% for the game until garbage time. "Carlos Delfino", "Ersan Ilyasova" and Andrea Bogut led a layup parade when they weren't nailing unfettered js. "But defense hardly is the greatest current concern." Agreed. The clowns who cover these clowns for Sun Sports are an even BIGGER problem when clowning is peddled as "analysis." More clownish -- Winderclown trying to cover for Clowny Arison when Arison opened his big phat mouth about Beasley being untradeable. Mike Wallace reported Riley may have floated Beasley's name to gauge trade interest even as Arison publicly declared Beasley off limits. Several news reports then suggest Miami's bid for Stoudemire was a non-starter because the Heat -- a la Arison -- refused to include Beasley in trade discussions. Post deadline, Riley confirms the Heat attempted to acquire Stoudemire without including Beasley in any deal. Now, according to Winderclown, Clowny Arison claims there was never any acquisition under discussion since the push for Lamar Odom last summer "that would have made us significantly better." Someone's lying. Bring in the clowns.
MW - Heat owner Micky Arison left his courtside seat just moments before the final buzzer. Heat president Pat Riley was long gone before the Milwaukee Bucks put the final touches on a 94-71 destruction of the Heat. Arison didn't stick around to hear the final chorus of "boos" from what was left of an already sparse crowd at AmericanAirlines Arena. --- I don't blame him. When you "persuade" a HOF coach/president to pass on ready-made production (Stoudemire) in order to keep unbankable "potential" (Beasley), you BETTER run. Even worse? The cost of keeping Beasley didn't end on Feb 18. TOR (Bosh), CLE (James), PHO (Stoudemire), ATL (Johnson) all appear destined to finish with superior records plus prospects going forward. Wade the recruiter will have nothing to pitch while the Wade the recruit finds it even more difficult, if not impossible, to stay. Would Wade walk away from $30 million in home court advantage? When your owner literally says keeping Beasley was more important than trading Beasley for a piece that could help Wade/Miami NOW, what is Wade supposed to think about the how and now of his immediate future? A future Wade has CLEARLY and CONSISTENTLY defined by more championships ASAP? Good job Micky. Not.
"you just described udonis haslem ..." --- I hope not. UD is exhibit A of a big who CAN'T and DOESN'T board & bang against the best. How many of Haslem's FGAs are jumpers? How often does UD snag boards in traffic? What's his CAREER board rate during CLUTCH time? Which MIA big has the best eFG%-allowed (gen d) and assisted eFG%-allowed (help d) numbers oncourt? How often does Haslem LAG in transition (either direction, starting or rotating)? Who 'actually' did more to shutdown Nowitzki THROUGHOUT the '06 Finals? Who does Nowitzki CREDIT for the same? Hint: It wasn't the Braided Wonder mythologized by the UD Media Army. Yes, UD is a FAR better boarder & banger than Beasley at this point because Beasley is 'currently' one of the WORST rebounding starting-4s in the league. Otherwise, there are too many games when Haslem doesn't deliver because: a) already undersized, Haslem often plays DOWN to his height (doesn't elevate, doesn't jump, zero or no quick hops, doesn't play above the rim unless he's on the receiving end of lobs for ez slams); b) is NOT an interior shot stopper unless he's drawing charges; c) does NOT change interior shots and will only affect shots if he closes on the perimeter; d) is NOT and has never been a "post presence" who consistently, reliably LEADS from the post (i.e., against elite competition) by example OR disposition (I see more pouting, scowling, call-argument from Haslem during games than the calm guidance or effective advice Miami NEEDS from team "captains" -- ditto Wade). The best teams in the league feature frontcourt tandems (4/5s) or threesomes (3/4/5s) who clear at LEAST 20-25 boards per night EVERY night. How often have the Heat been on the short end of the rebounding stick? Count the Ls.
Toggle Commented Feb 27, 2010 on Where's The Fire in This Heat? at Heat Check
Not to be overlooked, said post presence MUST board & bang EVERY night to STOP opponent runs, to give his offense 2nd chance opportunities. We're not asking for 24/12s & neither is Spoelstra. But if Al Horford -- 6-8 without shoes -- can give ATL 12/10 + usually smart d + usually reliable help d EVERY night, why can't Miami's so-called "bigs?" Not 12/10 once in awhile. Not 12/10 for a few games. But 12/10 EVERY night at home, on the road, whether hot or not. THAT's the kind of big Miami lacks for no other reason than NIGHTLY smarts, focus, aggressiveness + desire.
Toggle Commented Feb 27, 2010 on Where's The Fire in This Heat? at Heat Check
I'm SO TIRED of the Miami-And-Wade-Need-An-Elite-Point-To-Excel telethon hosted by Jerry Lewis Winderbag that PUKING is no longer an option. PUKE. PUKE. PUKE. WHO were Wade's "point guards" in 2006 -- when the Heat won a championship? JWill, on the downside of 30, PER 15.0, 4.9 apg, 37% 3PT%. GP, on the downside of 36, PER 10.7, 3.2 apg, 29% 3PT%. Elite, sharpshooting, kamikaze-like-penetrators=to-draw-off-Wade-defending-opponents in the paint? I. THINK. NOT. Hint to SANE Heat fans: DON"T READ Winderman for knowledge. DON'T HEED Winderman for advice. *DO* LAUGH, SNICKER, SMIRK at Winderman for entertainment. What THESE Heat lack -- a CONSISTENT or plural, CONSISTENT ***INSIDE*** post presence on BOTH ends of the floor a la Shaq to keep offenses AND defenses honest. JO"Neal, occasionally, is that guy. Beas, sometimes, is that guy. Anthony, on defense at times, is that guy. Magloire, when he isn't in foul trouble, can be that guy. But the Heat have NO ONE, thus far, who CONSISTENTLY provides inside offensive AND defensive presence to FINISH CONSISTENTLY around the rim, to DEFEND CONSISTENTLY in the blocks. Unless or until SOMEONE steps up EVERY NIGHT for the REST OF THE SEASON to provide that presence, to LEAD from the post, the Heat will continues its up-and-down roller coaster ride to NOWHERE.
Toggle Commented Feb 27, 2010 on Where's The Fire in This Heat? at Heat Check
MW - You can't go out and call out Charles Barkley for referring to you as "a bunch of Tito Jacksons" one day and come out the next and get beaten down by the Minnesota Timberwolves. --- They did and they were. The Titos were DESTROYED by The Hansons. Saturday? Donnie, Marie and a bunch of Osmonds will get their 3rd at-bat to put some whupass on these chumps. === MW - If [Wright] can bottle this up and play only half as well as he did Tuesday, it would be a huge bonus for the Heat. --- You mean, if Wright even played only half as well as he did Tuesday EVERY night for the REST of the season AND his career, he would FINALLY earn a FRACTION of the MILLIONS Miami has invested in Wright since he was drafted.
"with nick collison getting better and more comfortable at the point, it makes you think getting some cap space and picks wouldn't be such a bad thing... " --- "Nick Collison" is an Ike Austin clone at OKC. Darren Collison is a rookie point for NOH who some thought was "the most skilled, accomplished and NBA-ready guard we’ve seen among F4 finalists" in *2008*. [ http://bit.ly/auHUe4 ].
If "the Beasley guys" are quiet, it's because they don't understand how Beasley can actually & positively affect games WITHOUT filling up a boxscore (which he mostly did tonite). This is a game MB should take home and study closely. He could learn a LOT about how to stay in games by fine-tuning his defensive timing, expanding his offensive options based on opponent + teammate spacing Otherwise, they Head DID play well enough to win [ugly]. And should've won had Spo "managed" the game with more and smarter flexibility, less -- or FAR LESS -- rote rigidity.
"ONeal logged 35 mins against Memphis, UD -- [23]."
MW - There are no moral victories in the NBA, but this shouldn't be considered a setback to the extent that it affects the team's confidence. --- Yeah, but this was also a case of Spo snatching defeat from the jaws of victory by INSISTING on starting the 2nd half with the SAME lineup that put Miami in a hole AND using the SAME rotation that consistently resulted in defensive breakdowns & Dallas runs. Because not only is this team small, IT'S DUMB. Riley never hesitated to change 2nd half lineups depending on best-5 flow, especially on defense, in the 1st half. Not Spo. It's like the 10 Commandments. Chiseled in stone. Burning bush sacred. Thou must start Wright. Thou must play Jones. As a result, thou must needlessly and mindlessly PI$$ away hard-fought leads. And a chance for another ROAD win after LEADING for MOST of the game. P.S. Sticking to a failed or failing script is NOT winning basketball and NOT fair to Heat players who did the work to EARN a lead. === MW - Miami paid a hefty price for the 17 turnovers against Dallas, which had only 7. The turnovers, particularly from the veterans late in the game, were mind-boggling for the Heat. Udonis Haslem had two traveling calls go against him, with both coming on plays when he seemed to stumble after catching the ball and trying to make a move. Jermaine O'Neal also lost the ball off his leg in the final minutes when the Heat was in position to stay within a possession or two. Beasley's three-second call was also costly, but the ball should have found him well before he was planted in the lane. Mario Chalmers, despite his improved overall play the past two games, couldn't get the team into anything productive through most of the shot clock." --- Those were fatigue TOs by JOneal. Haslem? No excuse. JONeal logged 35 mins against Memphis, UD -- ONLY 19. I'm coming around to the "Spo haters" who religiously question Spo's addiction to UD. Haslem's man d is a car wreck if he isn't drawing charges, his help d late or non-existent, his unhopping shrimpiness a NIGHTLY liability against longer frontlines grabbing key boards at critical moments. Ditto Wright and Jones who aren't rooks, but make the game more DIFFICULT for their teammates. Don't be fooled by the boxscore. Wright/Jones were indirectly, initially or tangentially responsible for several miscues (TOs) that were eventually tagged to teammates, including mishandles, missed assignments, missed boxouts, standarounds that didn't immediately result in TOs but contributed to rushed shots, bad shots, offensive congestion, offensive paralysis, defensive breakdowns or tipped balls for loss of possessions. If Spo's going to THROW AWAY WINNABLE GAMES just to play Wright and/or Jones, throw it away on Cat and/or Anthony -- who AT LEAST give the Heat more length to conceivably anchor more effective zones. The Mavs didn't run tonite. So why stay small JUST TO STAY SMALL? /BWatch? Nothing to jeer at. Beasley brought good energy to start the game with defensive deflections and stops, offensive unselfishness to loosen Mav doubles/traps. What didn't happen? Ball movement, foot movement by teammates to create spacing & seams where Beasley could attack. Rio & DaeDae did a good job off creating/attacking because they controlled the rock. Beas could only do so much when teammates REFUSED to move. This game was winnable and the Heat WERE winning for most of the game. I'm hanging this L on Spo, for all the reasons mentioned above and more.
"So on defense you take out Beas cause he is a liability but you leave in Arroyo?? Come on coach!!!!!!!!!! GET IT TOGETHER" --- Except with Skip & DWade out, it's not as if Spo had a choice. And, no matter how often his handle "looks" competent, I would never trust DWright as a crunchtime point. You could make a 2-hour movie of the wrong stuff (unforced errors) by Wright. === How come it cant be, that Beasley played amazing and when they both start playing together it will be one of the most deadly combos in the league. --- Because in year 2 and counting, we've yet to see solid, extended evidence of the superduo synergy we've all been waiting for, we all keep hoping for. It's on BOTH players to make that happen BIG snf happen consistently. Example. Beas will see Dirk tonite. Dirk is longer, maybe even stronger. But there's NO REASON why Beas can get his share of boards, points, stops by using the SAME quickness, guile & agility that he uses to attack the rim. NONE. Beas could deliver NIGHTLY double-doubles NOW if thought about boardwork & stops (without fouling) as much he thinks about scoring (wihtout fouling).
Rare sigtings. An intelligent response in somebody's Q&A. --- Q: Ira, I get the feeling that Pat knows that we are not a contender this year and will live with the present point guards. But wouldn't Steve Blake have been an upgrade? -- Chuck. A: I think if the Heat was going to upgrade, it had to be even more than that. What this team needs is a late-game DEFENDER at the point, and Steve is not that. --- Neither is Arroyo. Ibid. Arroyo v. Barea, Kidd et al. tonite.
"Way to go Beas keep balling baby! Maybe we can sneek a win against Dallas tonight" --- Ditto. Tonite is BIG if Beasley's 'big night' -- and for that matter, Rio's -- really means something. You canNOT disappear every other night or every so many nights (see Wright, Dorrel) to become All-Star elite. What makes Dwyane, LeBron, Kobe, KG (in his prime),Duncan "superelite" is their CONSISTENCY on BOTH ends of the floor EVERY night -- ESPECIALLY on nights when the Js don't fall, whistles aren't blown, teammates can't ball. That's when ELITE players find some way to takeover games, i.e., with key stops, key makes, key rebounds, to STEAL games. The Heat *don't have to win* to validate Beasley's progress. But Beasley MUST do whatever he can to be the BEST playa on BOTH ends of the floor -- whether we win or not, whether his Js brick or swish -- to validate Beasley. Else resume his place among hundreds of talented half-players destined for journeyman status as "streaky" scorers=only. Ditto Chalmers. Also, special shoutout to QRich for bringing it on defense, glass (boards). Likewise J'Oneal. The Heat don't win without them. Conversely, no daps to DaeDae for hanging his lead, losing focus + aggression just because his shot wasn't there. LOUD hiss to UD for blowing a late layup on a shovel pass from Rio -- and then (apparently) blaming Chalmers for not forcing a lob that would've been swatted or stolen. TOTALLY WEAK "leadership" from a "team" co-captain. GO HEAT.
Great win. Solid contributions from all. From all EXCEPT the guy Miami coulda/shoulda dumped to shed $2.5 million in luxury tax to realize $4-$5m in refunds. If Dorella continues his ANNUAL now-you-see-him now-you-don't disappearing act on cue, Riley should dump his only-play-hard-when-I-have-to flaky a$$ LONG before the season ends. /BWatch Forget the 30 for a moment. But remember WHEN he scored his last handful. And consider HOW he just OUTPLAYED an All-Star, with solid defense sprinkled in. Z-Bo cleaned glass, but Beasley got his share in traffic, when it mattered. Beasley also wasn't responsible for the Heat finally losing its lead, watching Memphis complete its regulation comeback from the Bench. The kid played well. The kid made a difference (on both ends). The kid outplayed an All-Star. Actually, BOTH kids played well and had their best minutes/moments down the stretch. An owner is smiling. Can the crib kids HOLD THAT SMILE?
MW - "Nothing gained. Nothing [lost]. No problem with that... The Heat didn't lose out on anyone this week it can't make a better run at this summer." --- Great post (and accompanying piece) by Wallace to clarify/contextualize Arison's rare direct role in team personnel. Because no amount of spinning can unspin the truth: Riley was (probably) willing to deal Beasley for Stoudemire on Wade's behalf, Arison was NOT. When Riley says "we", he's simply being the HOF exec he already is, where preserving the appearance and substance of unity following a disagreement over personnel is the only way forward. Otherwise, I think Wallace's "loss" assessment is slightly too credulous, presumptive, optimistic. A trade gives ANY trading partner a clear, EXCLUSIVE path to trade targets. The Heat "lost' its best chance to establish an exclusive no-compete stake in Stoudemire beyond this season, i.e., Stoudemire's RFA rights if/when he opts out of his current deal. Now the Heat finds itself starting from scratch, competing against a growing number teams with enough cap to sign 2 x max free agents. Teams like Chicago (when they dump Hinrich) who already have a competitive core in place (Rose, Deng, Noah) to become instant contenders if they can add Wade + Bosh or Stoudemire.
Nothing gained. Nothing [lost]. No problem with that... The Heat didn't lose out on anyone this week it can't make a better run at this summer. --- Great post (and accompanying piece) by Wallace to clarify/contextualize Arison's rare direct role in personnel. Because no amount of spinning can unspin the truth: Riley was (probably) willing to deal Beasley for Stoudemire on Wade's behalf, Arison was NOT. When Riley says "we", he's simply being the HOF exec he already is, where preserving the appearance and substance of unity following a disagreement over personnel is the only way forward. Otherwise, I somewhat disagree with Wallace's "loss" assessment. A trade gives ANY trading partner a clear, EXCLUSIVE path to trade targets. The Heat HAS "lost' its best chance to claim an exclusive no-compete stake in Stoudemire beyond this season, i.e., including RFA rights if/when Stoudemire opts out of his current deal. Now the Heat finds itself competing against teams with enough cap to sign 2 x max free agents. Teams like Chicago (when they dump Hinrich) who already have a competitive core in place (Rose, Deng, Noah) to become instant contenders if they can add Wade + Bosh or Stoudemire.
Nothing gained. Nothing [lost]. No problem with that... The Heat didn't lose out on anyone this week it can't make a better run at this summer. --- Great post (and accompanying piece) by Wallace to clarify/contextualize Arison's rare direct role in personnel. Because no amount of spinning can unspin the truth: Riley was (probably) willing to deal Beasley for Stoudemire on Wade's behalf, Arison was NOT. When Riley says "we", he's simply being the HOF exec he already is, where preserving the appearance and substance of unity following a disagreement over personnel is the only way forward. Otherwise, I somewhat disagree with Wallace's "loss" assessment. A trade gives ANY trading partner a clear, EXCLUSIVE path to trade targets. The Heat HAS "lost' its best chance to claim an exclusive no-compete stake in Stoudemire beyond this season, i.e., including RFA rights if/when Stoudemire opts out of his current deal. Now the Heat finds itself competing against teams with enough cap to sign 2 x max free agents. Teams like Chicago (when they dump Hinrich) who already have a competitive core in place (Rose, Deng, Noah) to become instant contenders if they can add Wade + Bosh or Stoudemire.