“Never retreat. Never explain. Get it done and let them howl.”
In case you didn’t know, or maybe you couldn’t figure it out, I am here to tell you what is wrong with the Miami Heat.
It’s the Dallas Mavericks!
Nah, just kidding, that’s bad blog material, right? But it’s half-true.
I will tell you this, Rick Carlisle’s crew doesn’t get enough credit. Most of the talk is how poorly Miami is playing, mainly LeBron James.
Sometimes a game is won and not lost.
First thing I hear or read after a Miami loss is “LeBron this and LeBron that”. Anyone who knows the game realizes his lack of scoring in the 4th quarter is one of the many problems the Heat face, though it’s not the main problem.
Erik Spoelstra has bigger fish to fry.
For starters, their defense has been bad; especially last night during game 5 where the Mavericks won 112-103.
Dallas moves the ball better than anyone in the league.
They move the ball side to side faster and quicker than any team I have seen in a long time.
Miami’s rotations are slow. They don’t move on the pass, they are moving on the catch. They seem to always be late.
Their communication is poor and their body language is awful. There’s no one in a stance, there’s no one over-playing, no one pointing, I never see any hands up. Hands are inactive. They don’t subscribe to my theory on defense, “NEVER RELAX!”
I need to mention their defense in transition; it looks like a playground filled with middle school children during recess; wild and chaotic.
How many times are they going to allow JJ Barea to break them down? This guy looks like an all-star.
Give the Mavericks a ton of credit; they care about each other. I don’t care what your high school coach tells you, teammates need to care about each other. Have you ever heard that stupid theory, “Players don’t need to get along with each other off the court, just as long as they get along on the court.” What nonsense!
Dallas is willing to give the ball up and make the extra pass, hitting the open man. They are confident on offense where Miami seems rattled.
Miami holds the ball too long on offense. It seems like they are being called for more 24 second shot clock violations than ever. They dribble, dribble, dribble, and boom, the shot clock is winding down, forcing a Miami player to jack up an ill-advised shot. There’s no movement. There’s no energy. They look stale. And how many times are they going to run that same set where the guard hits the high post and sprints to the strong side corner to screen his teammate?
Last but not least, Chris Bosh needs to step up. Sure he’s scored some points in this series but when is he going to stop someone late in the game? There was one play in particular on defense when Dirk Nowitzki caught a pass on the left baseline and Bosh went out to close out; Dirk swept the ball low and drove right past him for a dunk. That can’t happen. That’s not championship defense. When is Bosh going to block a shot in crunch time? How about helping when one of your teammates gets beat off the dribble? Last night in the 4th quarter Bosh made a basket at the 10:02 mark to give Miami a 90-85 lead. The rest of his night went like this:
5:35 – Defensive rebound
4:00 – Turnover
3:38 – 1 of 2 from the free-throw line
:56 – 1 of 2 from the free-throw line
:13 – missed 3 point shot
That’s not much production down the stretch from a player who is part of ‘The Big 3″.
The last 5 minutes of the 1st quarter last night was some of the best basketball I have seen in a long time; matter of fact I haven’t seen that kind of shooting since I watched Ziggy’s Brooklyn USA Team play Riverside at West 4th Street Park. Both teams shot a combined 13-15 to finish out the quarter. Even Jeff Van Gundy of ABC said last night that it was the best championship game he has ever seen.
I hope Spoelstra gets it together for game 6 Sunday night. I want to see a 7th game but if their defense does not improve and they don’t move the ball, they may be watching Dallas poppin’ bubbly in South Beach.
What’s up with ABC? How come they have not shown one mug shot of Mark Cuban during the game? We can’t get a live interview with Doris Burke and the owner of the Dallas Mavericks?
Follow me on Twitter: @CoachFinamore