The teams that I don’t like and don’t want to see win the NBA championship are both leading their respective series 3-1. I am part of the group that doesn’t want to see the Heat win. It is indeed a “have” versus “have-not” bias plus the whole anti “Decision” sentiment, but the reality is, the Heat are not even that good. I feel like they are catching the NBA during a proverbial “down” year and are doing really well to take advantage of it. At one point, it seemed like they had no shot at winning it all. But then the Celtics self-destructed by trading away Perkins for younger pieces. Great job Danny Ainge! All that KG, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen really needed in their mid 30’s is an in-season rebuild of a championship caliber team! Not only did the Celtics give up size and toughness with that trade, it also completely ruined their chemistry and derailed a good looking season. So after Aingle removed the Celtics from the path of the Heat, all that was left was a young and upcoming Bulls team in the East. The Bulls are playing great and Derrick Rose is insanely talented, but that whole operation is inexperienced and immature. Their future looks bright and all they need is another offensive piece, but they clearly can’t handle the pressure of an Eastern conference finals yet.
Ironically, this assessment of inexperience should have been true for the Heat themselves – a brand new team with 3 superstar pieces figuring out how to play each other under an young, inexperienced coach. But the Heat have a couple of things the Bulls don’t. One, they have 3 stud offensive pieces as opposed to just one for the Bulls. Secondly, LeBron and Wade have experienced this stage and beyond individually, if not as a team. You can clearly see that they are a lot more comfortable than Rose at the end of games. Rose is still learning these playoffs and the rest of the Bulls team is of no help sometimes. They are neither talented nor experienced. The Heat on the other hand are better off on both accounts. The only issue was, they were supposed to take a year or two to build chemistry. But it seems like a championship is within their grasp right here, right now. The only thing worse than these 3 dudes winning a championship is them winning it right now in year 1. That makes LeBron’s predication of 6 or 7 championships realistic. Thanks to Ainge and the total collapse of the Fakers, they can smell the trophy. The only thing on their way now are the Dallas Mavericks – the traditionally soft and under-acieving Mavs.
Unlike the Heat, the Mavs are legitimately good, but they are also benefitting from the inexperience of their talented, but young opponent in the Thunder. The Thunder gave the game away yesterday after leading by 15 with 5 minutes to go. It’s the type of defeat that can crush a team for a couple of years! Nowitzki has been unbelievable in this series and the playoffs. Durant’s game is very similar to his, but Nowitzki’s experience is now trumping Durant’s youth. The Mavs are a collection of old, talented and decent dudes that we can get behind, but I just can’t because of the fact that they are one of Suns’ major rivals and I don’t want them winning a championship while Nash is languishing at home. It would legitimize Cuban’s stupid decision with Nash and thats why me and most Suns fans have a huge problem with the Mavs winning. But they will be the favorites against the Heat and they may be the lesser of the 2 evil. Nowitzki sure is playing like he deserves a championship and those 4-Th quarter shots he made in game 4 against some good defense were unbelievable. We live in a “what have you done for me lately” culture and hence feel like this playoff performance by Nowitzki is one of the best ever. I am sure many legends including MJ and even Kobe and Shaq over the last 10 years have had runs like this that is not fresh in our memory. But I can’t remember a stretch where a defender gets appreciated for great D on a superstar like Nick Collison is right now, but still get torched routinely for 40 points on 60% shooting! Thats how good Nowitzki has been this series – unstoppable with or without good defense.
Time to mentally get ready for a Mavs-Heat finals. The Mavs have home court this round and there is no way the Thunder win all 3 remaining games with 2 of them at Dallas. At least the Bulls have 2 of the 3 at home. So I sill have some hopes for Da Bulls.