sad heat

The Miami cHeat: Over at ESPN's Heat Index, Brian Windhorst wrote: "The Bulls didn't do anything special in their 103-82 victory -- they did exactly what the scouting report said they would. They rebounded and played defense. The Heat reacted to it not like the surging favorites they had been tagged following their five-game takedown of the Boston Celtics in the previous round, but instead like the junior varsity."

With all due respect to Windhorst...saying the Bulls "didn't do anything special" makes me wonder whether he was watching the game with a potato sack on his head. Did he miss Dywane Wade isolating against Joakim Noah and getting his shot swatted? Or LeBron James isolating against Taj Gibson and getting his attempt deflected? Or Kyle Korver -- trapped in a one-on-one situation -- knocking the basketball away from Wade? Korver ended up deflecting the ball out of bounds, giving the ball back to the Heat, but come on.

The Bulls were playing inspired basketball. And it was pretty special.

Now let's talk stats. The Bulls scored 22 points off 16 forced turnovers, went 10-for-21 from downtown, and outrebounded Miami 45-33. Furthermore, Chicago's Bench Mob outscored their Heat counterparts 28-15.

Those are impressive numbers.

Even more impressive was the fact that the Bulls held James and Wade to a combined 11 points in the second half. In fact, both James (15 points, 5-for-15, -14) and Wade (18 points, 7-for-17, -22) looked pretty mortal. They each finished with only four free throw attempts and a co-game-high 4 turnovers each.

Miami advanced past the Celtics by repeatedly isolating their two superstars. None of the Boston players -- individually or as a group -- could stay between those men and the basket. That didn't work against the Chicago D. Not in Game 1 anyway. With the Bulls keeping James and Wade out of the paint, and shutting down Miami's fast break, the cHeat mustered only 34 points in the second half.

Now for the absurd numbers. Chicago had a 19-6 edge in offensive rebounds that led to an unbelievable 31-8 advantage in second chance points. The cHeat could not protect their defensive glass. Noah had 8 offensive rebounds. Carlos Boozer had 4. Gibson had 3. Heck, even C.J. Watson had 2.

The Bulls didn't shoot all that well -- 43.7 percent as a team -- but they had an insane offensive rebounding percentage of 41.3. When a team rebounds four out of every 10 missed shots, that gives them a pretty distince advantage.

Said LeBron: "You play defense hard and the shot goes up and they get an offensive rebound, kick it out for a three or get a layup or a dunk. Those are demoralizing for a defensive team."

Added Coach Spo: "It really deflated us and we lost our concentration. The offensive rebounding really affected us."

Wait, wait, wait. These are professional basketball players, right? LeBron has won two MVP awards. Wade was the Finals MVP of a championship team. The cHeat have two of the best five players on the planet and Chris Bosh had a 30-point night. But...their team got demoralized? Maybe they should have just boxed out instead.

Obviously, this is a one-game sample, and people shouldn't get too excited about Chicago's chances or too down about Miami's. Still, last night's game was like a war of attrition. The cHeat got worn down. Remember: They depend on big games from Bosh, James and Wade every night. Those guys played almost 40 MPG during the season and are logging 40 or 40+ during the postseason. They aren't getting anything from their bench. At some point, that's got to have an effect, right?

Dwyane Wade, quote machine: "I don't even remember shooting in the fourth quarter. We were throwing up some Hail Marys."

Dwyane Wade, one-on-one machine: After a five-game fun fest of breaking ankles against the Celtics, let's just say Dwyane and the Heat found it a little bit more difficult to tap dance past the Bulls.

Dwyane Wade, poster boy: Taj Gibson fed Pookie a Spalding Burger with an extra side of "YEEEEAAAAAARRRGGHHH!!!"

Dwyane Wade, quote machine: "That was a good one. First time I got dunked on all year. I'll take my 90-to-1 blocks to dunked on ratio. It was a very athletic play. I knew I didn't have a chance."

Joakim Noah, quote machine: "It was unbelievable. The one on Wade was crazy and the one at the end of the game was crazy, too. I've been calling him 'Light Feet' for a long time. That's his nickname around here...he's got a few nicknames, but 'Light Feet' is one of them."

Taj Gibson, quote machine: Believe it or not, Gibson's posterization of Wade was only his second favorite dunk of the night. This was the first:

"That just shows that no matter what the score is, no matter how much time is left in the game, you never stop playing. You want to keep playing til the clock runs out and that's Thibs' motto: Play 48 minutes. And tonight we wanted to go out there and show that we can play 48 minutes of tough basketball."

Erik Spoelstra, unintentionally dirty quote machine: "We took it on the chin."

The Memphis Grizzlies: I'm only giving the Care Bears an entry because they lost. They kept their composure and fought to the end, but they couldn't contain Kevin Durant down the stretch. They don't have anything to be ashamed of. To be honest, I knew after they dropped the triple OT game they were going to lose the series...that they couldn't win another one in Oklahoma City.

I'm pretty interested to see what happens with this team next season. Assumina Rudy Game returns from injury and can be successfully re-integrated, and also assuming they re-sign Marc Gasol, the Griz -- behind Zach Randolph -- could become a power.

No. Really. It could happen.

With that, I leave you with Z-Bo's theme song.

Chris' Playoff Lacktion Report:

Grizzlies-Thunder: Ishmael Smith sailed into the sunset on an eight-bit sea after a 15-second Mario, while Daequan Cook baked a celebratory cake comprised of FOUR bricks from...uh...Bricktown and a turnover in 10:54 for a +5!!!

El (Oh El) Heat-Bulls: Ahhh...South Beach repped itself well today, judging from Udonis Haslem's +1 suck differential in 4:12 via brick, Eddie House's +2 in 2:14 via brick and turnover, and Juwan Howard's 2.2 trillion (2:14).

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Anonymous Tree said...
"That was a good one. First time I got dunked on all year. I'll take my 90-to-1 blocks to dunked on ratio."

Heat fans, if you're still confused as to why the average basketball fan hates this team, please read the above. Has LeBron's inability to 'get it' infected Wade now? Maybe it's just a case of how you define "First" ...

Anonymous Karc said...
Of course, the only reason Brian Windhorst has a job with ESPN is because he covered LeBron James' entire run in Cleveland as a beat writer (2003-2010), and ESPN wanted someone who knew James (i.e., a homer moonlighting as a defacto PR man for James).

Of course, this is no different than ESPN hiring Adande (to get in with Kobe Byrant), and it's not nearly as disgusting as Tim McMahon of ESPN Dallas accusing Dan Crawford of being "corrupt" (since Mavs were 2-18 when Crawford was the ref in their playoff games). But it will be very easy to dismiss whatever Windhorst (and on the flip side, Mike Wilbon) has to say concerning this series, his loyalties are very clear.

Blogger The Nightbringer said...
I think we are missing the both teams played hard vid after your Memphis entry. I missed the game but my dad kept going on about how awesome it was.

Also, I woke up this morning to a link on the Windows Messenger frontpage with an article titled,"NBA executive comes out" . And what I thought was some deep conspiracy shit was actually a big letdown. Oh well.

Is it really a big surprise if anyone says they're gay anymore? This isn't the 60's.

Blogger AnacondaHL said...
Taj Gibson drinks Sprite!

Anonymous kazam92 said...
No mention of Jamaal Magloire's inglorious appearance. Spo was terrible yesterday and he has been great up until then.

"That was a good one. First time I got dunked on all year. I'll take my 90-to-1 blocks to dunked on ratio."

"Heat fans, if you're still confused as to why the average basketball fan hates this team, please read the above. Has LeBron's inability to 'get it' infected Wade now? Maybe it's just a case of how you define "First" ..."

What's to get? Would you be happier if he said "yeah he dunked the ever living shit out of me. I wish Mario Chalmers didn't suck so bad that his turnover led me to a 3 on 1 in no mans land. Boy I should have just moved." That dunk hurt his pride I imagine. He's gonna downplay it.

Anonymous JoeH said...
My sentiments exactly, Tree. Can't wait to see what the cHeat fans have to say.

Anonymous Batmanu said...
Does anyone else find it ironic that LeBron mentioned (as shown in an interview segment shown during the game) that Luol Deng and Joakim Noah were X factors? He said Deng gives the team 21 points and like 8 rebounds and Noah gets like 7 or 8 offensive boards.

Funny that those are eerily close to the numbers they actually put up.

Blogger ChrisH said...
why are you calling them cHeat? bc of the 6players on the floor or something else. (wade cheating on his ex wife in giving her herpes)

Anonymous Czernobog said...
No mention of the Refs swallowing their whistles with 6 Heat players on the floor?

Oh, and did my eyes and ears deceive me, or did LeBron say, regarding the Bulls having the best record in the league "As a competitor, you want to go out and compete against the best" without a hint of irony?

Anonymous TransINSANO said...
With how shamelessly I jumped on the Bulls bandwagon last night, you'd think MJ was playing again. Even I didn't fully comprehend how much I wanted to see this Heat team lose until now. Before I knew they couldn't against the Sixers, and the Celtics involvement in the last series dulled the feeling as well (I didn't exactly want them getting banner 18 ahead of the Lakers either). But no more, I'm all in now, and last night's Heat destruction was simply delicious!

Heat fans, if you're still confused as to why the average basketball fan hates this team, please read the above.

And if they're still confused after that they should probably just look in the mirror. That 90-1 ratio Wade was talking about sounds just about right when it comes to obnoxious bandwagon frontrunners, "LeBron fans" and stat worshipers versus actual Miami Heat basketball fans.

BTW, the fact that the Bulls represent the antithesis of all of the above makes it that much sweeter to watch them take it to the Heat. This isn't just basketball, it's a fight for the soul of basketball.

@Karc - What's the excuse of the other Heat Index groupies like Tom "Heat Losses Don't Matter" Haberstroh? I actually think Windhorst isn't so bad for a lifelong LeBronite (at least he turned it into something beneficial to himself, like a suckerfish riding a shark). Same with Adande, in that they'll actually write about when the team fails, not just write excuses and shit like it's not fair or the better team lost, etc. McMahon, on the other hand, is a horrible homer that should be writing a blog for, not "covering" the team for ESPN.

Anonymous Tree said...
@kazam92: What's better? How about not spewing complete and utter self-serving bullshit? That was not the first time he was dunked on this year - so to state such nonsense is either proof of self-delusion, unabridged narcisism or, worst of all: he actually believes it. We get it Wade, you're awesome even when you're not.

I would be happier if he said nothing at all, or just acknowledged he got beat without having to brag about himself. This is just another example of the indefensible arrogance of this team (at least until they win something more than a round 2 series).

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Was Brewer out of bounds when he went up for that dunk?

Anonymous kazam92 said...
Damn, you guys came out in full force huh?

Tweets of the day:

@dwadeofficial I had 2 laugh at ths..I was playing my oldest son Zaire on his nerf rim & he dunked & said Gibson while screaming..L2MS Kids u gotta luv em

@ShannonBrown Ok let me put a end to this right now before it goes any further. I DID NOT SLEEP WITH @paugasol woman!!! First and last time addressing it!

Blogger Wormboy said...
Man, I thought the Bulls were going to cough it up in that first quarter. Rose turning it over, everybody looking tense. Ouch, all those Heat fast breaks! Then at the start of the second quarter the Bulls loosened up, played their game, and very steadily played better than the Heat the whole rest of the game. Imagine what the score would be if they'd played well from the opening tip. O_o

Taj Gibson and other Bullies brought championship energy. Phenomenal! But they didn't play out of their heads; they played within their system, hustled, helped, rotated, moved their feet, contested shots. And one assumes that they'll eventually stop biting on Wade and Bron shot fakes.

Still, you ain't winning a series until you've won on the road. Fortunately, the Bulls have home court. But I guarantee that the Heat come out stronger. Their Celtics series and the first quarter may have made them complacent and over-confident.

@Nightbringer: "Is it really a big surprise if anyone says they're gay anymore? This isn't the 60's."

Yes, in men's sports it is. Look, I can see why you might think that. But there have been very few, and most of those already retired (e.g. Amaechi). Wanna name all of the active athletes in major macho men's sports who have come out? Y'know, football, baseball, basketball, hockey? List 'em. Yeah, I thought so.

Granted, this is just an executive. But even that matters. In fact, that an executive's coming out is news is an indication of the problem, right? This isn't like Anne Heche or Kevin Spacey coming out. Major men's sports are VERY homophobic. For the most part the pro athletes we watch don't want to be in the same room with a gay man. It was a big deal recently when a hockey player came out in support of gay marriage. That's right, it's front page news when a major male athlete says "yeah, it's OK if gays want to marry" in an ad.

Imagine, if you will, if the same were true about mixed race marriage. Hooooh-boy, imagine the fireworks!

So yeah, this is news. It's always relative, right?

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Despite all that celebrating after beating the Celtics, turns out it was actually Tom Thibodeau that Lebron can't beat.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
For no reason in particular, an assortment of Mario Chalmers-related images.

Anonymous TransINSANO said...
@dwadeofficial I had 2 laugh at ths..I was playing my oldest son Zaire on his nerf rim & he dunked & said Gibson while screaming..L2MS Kids u gotta luv em

See, even D. Wade's kid doesn't like the Heat.

@ShannonBrown Ok let me put a end to this right now before it goes any further. I DID NOT SLEEP WITH @paugasol woman!!! First and last time addressing it!

Way to put an end to it, Shannon, I'm sure Pau appreciates it. Also, good to know your basketball IQ isn't underachieving relative to your general IQ.

Hooooh-boy, imagine the fireworks!

Hooooh-boy, probably want to stay away from "Hooooh-boy" when discussing a serious topic. Good for him though, and I'm sure this won't be used by pundits as an excuse to rehash the Kobe slur episode...

Anonymous Czernobog said...
@Anon: Never mind Thibs, it's Brian Scalabrine that LeBron can't beat.

Stolen outright from a commenter on By The Horns.

Captcha: sclamor. Clamoring for Scal.

Anonymous lechuckie said...
i can see bulls fan getting mad over windhorst's take on game 1, but i kinda agree. the bulls have been dominating the heat the whole regular season with superior rebounding differential in each game. the bulls also have the best record in the league. in fact, i dont understand why is it seems to be the heat who is generally more favored than the bulls.

Blogger Cortez said...
What he said...

"That was a good one. First time I got dunked on all year. I'll take my 90-to-1 blocks to dunked on ratio."

What he should have said...

"That was a good one"

Anonymous TransINSANO said...

By Crom, I think the poster of Gibson's dunk on Wade is actually better than seeing it in motion, and more devastating to Wade's ego long-term.

Blogger lordhenry said...
Deep in the ocean off the coast of South Beach, in an underwater volcano guarded by sharks with laser-beams attatched to their frickin' heads lies the Lethrone room. Sitting on a golden throne flanked by solid gold lions is the Witch King of Achron, holding his head in his hands and wondering what just happened.
"The King is most vexed, Wade, how could you allow that Peasant Gibson to dunk on you like that?!"
Wade, now in a throne of his own, though not as mighty as that of the King's (and also a step down on the dais) eys Lebron with scorn, "Riiiiight, so this is my fault, might I remind you my ratio of blocks to dunked---"
"THE KING HAS NO NEED FOR EXCUSES!" Lebron thunders, and in a calmer voice, "The important thing to remember here is that your failure was in no way related to The Lebron. Obviously, The Lebron's supporting cast failed him again and he must rise above it with his usual grace."
From his place at the foot of Lebron's throne, Chris Bosh sobs, "BUT I HAD 30 POINTS!!!!!" And flees the room in tears.

Anonymous Karc said...
@TransINSANO - Yeah, everyone who writes for that "Heat Index" is questionable, I was only mentioning in general how insignificant ESPN's opinion on the NBA is, since they have a huge financial interest in it and are unapologetic in playing favorites. Nothing makes this more obvious when the unanimous "expert" predictions of a team that "should" win a series (Orlando, LA) turn out to be unanimously, laughably wrong.

I just watch the games, and come here for the funny jokes. Trying to do much else would cause my head to explode.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
What does Joel Anthony get for playing 30:35 and taking (and missing)ONE shot?

Anonymous Drew said...
You can overanalyze these things - if Wade had said "It was a good one, I've had a lot of success blocking shots this season, but this time I got dunked on" then it wouldn't have seemed so arrogant, would it?

Thib completely outcoached Spoelstra and he had role players step up nicely. Heat have plenty of big bodies, all these guys have to do is keep Noah off the offensive glass. Those one-dimensional players are starting to look like zero-dimensional players.

If the Bulls hit half time and are on 7+ offensive boards, Riley is storming into the locker room, sacking Spo and taking over himself.

I was about to make a point that you should foul Noah, but then I found out he is a 71% career FT shooter - how is that possible with that horrible technique?

On the Suns exec coming out: I think this is fantastic. There is clearly more than one gay guy in the NBA. It's utterly ridiculous that people can't just be themselves these days. It's true in pro sports internationally too, not many famous soccer players have ever come out. People like Welts are role-models and far more deserving of admiration than the over-paid, under-performing millionaires who work for their organizations.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

you put way too much thought and effort into your Heat hate. Let it go.

Anonymous Wouter said...
Is there anyone out there who really does have a life, doesn't give a crap about Lebron's or Wade's ego and just loves watching the Heat for the phenomenal basketball they play, especially considering it's sometimes basically 3 on 5? Seriously, the amount of people who just talk smack about a basketball player they never met and probably never will is amazing. This isn't WWE people, the stuff they say outside of the basketball court aren't shot promos and therefore should not influence the way you think about them. We watch these guys for what they do ON the court, which is basically the opposite of the WWE.

That being said, I hate Kobe Bryant and the Lakers and I'm glad they got swept. Thank you.

Blogger Wormboy said...
How about we sum it up like this: it could be a great series. I very much want the Bulls to win, but I think the Heat will win at least 2.

Also, never forget the invisible hand of David Stern. The Heat are the new Lakers. He VERY much wants them to win. Guaranteed Wade gets a 15 foul shot game. And for those who ask why Wade wasn't at the line? Did you notice him getting unduly roughed up? Or does he get little cheap ass touch foul calls all year long? It's playoff basketball. No way in hell should you should go to the line for a hand on your hip while you're driving.

Anonymous William said...
Better than putting too little thought and effort into my Heat hate.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

playing 3 on 5 because you have 3 good players and a bunch of lacktators is not "good basketball", in fact its bad basketball, most def not the "right way to play"

Blogger TransINSANO said...
@Wouter - If you're interested in good basketball, personalities aside, you should watch the '08-'10 Lakers. If you want degree of difficulty, watch the '06 Lakers: hot 1 on 5 action! Actually, just watch the current Bulls, that was awesome the other night, and not just because they exposed the Heat.

Blogger Wormboy said...
Can Taj send the Heat fishing?

Dedicated to Taj Gibson, from Taj Mahal: