The Miami Heat's historical run for a threepeat is officially on the brink. After losing lopsidedly against the San Antonio Spurs at the American Airlines Arena, it's hard to fathom whether the Heat could still pull it off. Hard as it is to accept, the Spurs have been outplaying the Heat all series long and I wouldn't really be surprised if the Heat goes on to lose the next game in San Antonio.
Could the Heat still come back and win the championship or will they fold on Game 5? The Heat's been good at responding in loses all season long, but somehow, in tonight's game, it wasn't very evident. The Spurs have been imposing their will on the Heat and it seemed like LeBron and company have no answer. I just don't get why the Heat can't get their rhythm nor get their acts together. Eerily, it starts to feel like 2011 again. The much younger Heat couldn't do a thing against another aging team.
So what's wrong with the Heat? What's happened to this beast from the east? Why were they suddenly reduced to becoming the Spurs' whipping boys? Obviously, the Spurs' system has a lot to do with it. Their defense has been stifling. Their offense? Well, it's nothing short of magical. It is funny how people still regard the Spurs as a boring team when in the last few games, they have been the ones showing up the mighty Heat and making the Heat look like amateurs out there. Their positioning, their crisp passing, heck, almost everything the Spurs does seemed like a masterpiece. As a Heat fan, I could only get frustrated by what they're doing but as a basketball fan, I am at awe. These guys from the Spurs are as good as they could get. On the other side of the fence, the Heat's been playing their worst. Can the Heat still pull it off? I hope so. It is feasible. But it's gonna be hard as hell.
Here's my take. I think, one of the prime reasons why the Heat's been losing is the lack of playing time for Udonis Haslem and Shane Battier. Those two players give the Heat an edge defensively. That's why I'm dumbfounded by Erik Spoelstra's decision not to play the two. And how about Michael Beasley and Greg Oden? Why did the Heat sign them off in the first place if they're just gonna ride on the bench? They should have not let go of Joel Anthony if they would just let Oden sit down. They pretty much are doing the same thing anyways. And Beasley, that talented yet immature kid they drafted in 2008. Why the hell is he on the bench for? Desperate times call for desperate measures. Play him, Spo!
The Heat has a lot of adjustments to make and they better start doing those adjustments soon. Spoelstra needs to put Shane or UD back on the starting lineup. Rashard's been a revelation, but Battier or Haslem can make the difference. Rio meanwhile needs to get his mojo back. His stock won't rise if he's gonna play shitty basketball, assuming he's gonna try the free agency. LeBron, Dwyane and Chris should be made to realize that they are the three most important people on the team. If they won't stop playing lackadaisically, then the Spurs would be raising their banner on Game 5. I am hopeful that the Heat can still pull it off. It ain't over till the fat lady sings. I just hope and pray that they'll make the proper adjustments and maybe, just maybe, become just the 9th team to come back from a 3-1 deficit and win the championship.
Let's not go down without a fight, guys. Let's go Heat.