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Ring that victory bell! Miami wins their first game of the season, take down the New Orleans Hornets in Kansas City, 97-81

I surmised it had to happen sometime, and happen it did! The Miami Heat notched their first victory of the season in a fairly dominant performance against the New Orleans Hornets, 97-81. If you have to take one bad thing away from this game, it's that Miami outscored New Orleans in every quarter but the fourth. They are having trouble putting games away, and that's something that has to be worked on by players and coaches. Or maybe I'm having trouble accepting that these games really don't count, and it has to be worked on by me. I'll go with the former. Beasley had a very nice game that won't get reported nearly as well as Wednesday night's. The point total dropped to 11, but he matched that number in rebounds in 28 minutes of play. I thought the glaring weakness of his Wednesday night game was his four rebounds, and he remedied that. I'll take the double-double over 24-4. I don't think Miami will have a scoring problem this year as long as their defense is solid. If Beasley hits those type of numbers, their defense will be the better for it. So now we wait. Almost a week for another game. Miami welcomes the Memphis Grizzlies on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in the next-to-last preseason game. Dwayne Wade has gotten a little banged up over the start of the preseason, so I'll be interested to see if he actually plays significant minutes in the remaining two games. A few housekeeping notes: Basketball Prospectus has released their Pro Basketball Prospectus 2009-10 in both printed and digital editions. BP is regarded as the one-stop shop for everything NBA, and this book is sure to be a dynamite collection of information. Statmaster GM Daryl Morey writes the forward to the book, which you can read here. They're pulling Morey, all right? It's the real deal. They've even got a contribution from particular blogger with dashing good looks and a razor-sharp wit. Yup, I've contributed about 50 words to the book myself. I'll give you a sneak peek:
When you think...
How can you say no to that? Pick up a copy or five. Finally, if you missed the ESPN live chat on Thursday, you can still play the chat here and read what Chris Sheridan and I had to say about the team. Chris is a fount of wisdom, and I like to think I didn't embarass myself. Click here and then click on the play button in the box to read over the questions we answered. Like I said in the chat, if your question didn't get through or you just have a question to ask, leave it in the comments of the live chat post and I WILL answer it! I love audience participation. Enjoy your Friday everyone!