Should the Cavaliers Trade Andrew Wiggins For Kevin Love?


      With the first pick in the NBA Draft, the Cavaliers selected Andrew Wiggins, a guard coming out of freshmen year in Kansas. Wiggins has unmatched potential with unbelievable jumping ability, length, and overall athleticism. However, although Wiggins will be a very good player next year, and a great player in the future, it might be in the best interest of the Cavaliers organization to trade him. 


      Who would they trade him for? None other than Kevin Love. Love has played in the NBA for 6 seasons, been an all-star three times, and has played his entire career for the measly talented Minnesota Timberwolves. In the past two seasons (Ignoring the 2013 injury season), Love has averaged 26 points per game, 13 rebounds per game, and 37% three point shooting which is few and far between in 6'10 athletes. 


      He's proven he can score, shoot, rebound, pass, and needs a chance to prove he can win. Obviously the Cavaliers with Lebron James and Kyrie Irving could provide this idea to everyone, and win a Championship. 


      However, there is a major problem in bringing Kevin Love to Cleveland. The Cavaliers actually have to give up someone to Minnesota, and that person seems to be the one and only, Andrew Wiggins. It is pretty clear that Minnesota will only trade Wiggins for Lebron or Wiggins, and obviously, no one would ever trade Lebron, so Wiggins is the only option. 


The Cavaliers are then faced with two options: 

1. Keep Wiggins, let Wiggins develop under Lebron, Wiggins turn into a super star, let Lebron age before turning into a Championship contender, and have the best back court in the NBA now. 

2. Trade Wiggins, get Love, have the newest big three develop, title contend for the next 5-7 years. 


     To me, looking at the options, I feel that trading Wiggins is undoubtedly the best option for Cleveland. Let Kevin Love come over to Cleveland, have a great guard, forward, and center, and an all around great team. Kyrie or Lebron can play pick and roll/pop with Love, have one set up for a shooting/driving option somewhere else on the floor, and find some shooters to put in the corner. Versatile big men are the most valuable players in the league, and Cleveland has a chance to grab two (Lebron and Love). 


     Once Cleveland lands some three point shooters, they are set to contend and win a Championship. There would be some need to improve their defense, but overall, they would be for sure Championship contenders. Lebron could play with a Chris Bosh-like player, who is a better rebounder, shooter, and scorer! 


      The only argument I see for keeping Wiggins is for the potential, excitement, and future. Wiggins is not going to be an all-star in his first year - Well take that back - He's in the eastern conference, so possibly, but unlikely. 


      Wiggins could turn into the next great thing, and it's up to the Cleveland organization and Lebron to decide if he's worth the risk of keeping him to develop. To me, I don't like too many risks and I feel Love would be a sure thing to bring Cleveland to Championship contention. I don't see Wiggins, Kyrie, Lebron taking Cleveland to a Championship next season, and I feel Vegas is wrong for making them favorites to win it all. I could see them competing for the ECF, but I don't see them beating teams like San Antonio in the west. 


     Finally, Wiggins is only worth keeping to see the excitement. I admit it, that I would love to see Wiggins, Kyrie, and Lebron play together. I can't wait to see them develop and become the best back court in the NBA. As a fan, I want the Cavs to keep Wiggins. 


     However, at the end of the day, I feel that Cavs fans just want to win. And if that's the case, Love is the best option for contending for a Championship next year, and years after that. 

Lebron James: Loyalty Over Royalty.


    I was sitting in the doctors office when I heard the news. I had to receive some allergy shots and relax for the rest of the day. It had been over a month waiting for Lebron to make his "Decision" and honestly, and selfishly, I was getting tired of waiting. As I sat there, looking at a bogus magazine of Hollywood celebrities, I was debating where Lebron would go, why he would go some where, and if people would despise him with exemplified hatred. I thought to myself, "If he goes to Miami, he's going for rings, and people will never forgive him. He will go down as one of the most hated and easiest to poke fun at athletes in history." However, on the other hand, I knew going to Cleveland would just be the opposite. "If Lebron were to go to Cleveland, he would go because it's his home, he's accepted the apologies of Dan Gilbert, and wants to help build Kyrie, Wiggins, and the city of Cleveland." He would be more famous than the Beatles, and according to John Lennon, "More popular than Jesus." 

    As the nurse walked through the open door, I felt a small buzz in my right pants pocket. I looked down, and the words were simply stated from a good friend of mine, "What did I tell you, Lebron's going to Cleveland." I was shocked, felt adrenaline and excitement flowing through my body. The nurse told me to sit still and gave the allergy shots for the second week of July. The shots were exemplified in pain as adrenaline only makes the pain worse, but I didn't care. Lebron was coming back to Cleveland. 

   I jumped off the table, thanked the nurse and ran off to the car. As I drove home, I listened to the hometown, ESPN Cleveland radio exclaiming, "HE CHOSE US!" 

    The words echoed through my mind, as I knew he would be on cloud nine for the next 72 hours. Not only was he giving up an almost certainty of a 5th straight NBA Finals appearance, but he chose a gorgeous and great city of Miami for Cleveland who has been struggling since Lebron left in 2010. 

   Lebron in his letter stated, "My relationship with Northeast Ohio is bigger than basketball." Lebron was choosing his loyalty to Ohio to bring happiness to his home city over happiness to himself and his legacy. In Miami, they had proven themselves worthy of another Finals appearance, and with Pat Riley at the head of the organization, they were undoubtedly reaching the ECF and most likely the Finals. With Danny Granger, Josh McRoberts, new fire in Shabazz Napier, and only being in July, the Heat were ready to make another run. 

   In Cleveland, Lebron is going to a team that Colin Cowherd quotes saying, "A team in diapers." Kyrie and Dion Waiters have never been to the playoffs, or even in a playoff race for that matter, Luol Deng and Andrew Bynum are gone, Wiggins is a rookie, Anthony Bennett is still a young sophomore, and the only player who has ever played with Lebron is Varejao. The Cavs were the 9th youngest team last year, and haven't gained any other veterans but Lebron. 

    The Cavaliers will have to face the likes of the Chicago Bulls, Indiana Pacers, Toronto Raptors, and his old team, the Miami Heat. Thank goodness they are not in the west, or they would have no chance of being a high seed next season. 

   Chicago has added better scorers in Doug McDermott, and Pau Gasol. If Derrick Rose is healthy, or good enough to play, the Bulls will have a good offense. On defense nothing changes with Noah heading as the reigning Defensive Player of the Year, Jimmy Butler reaching the 2nd All-NBA Defensive Team last year, and the best coach in the NBA, Tom Thibodeau. The Cavaliers have a small chance of defeating the Bulls in the regular season or playoffs. 

    The Indiana Pacers put forward a great line up of George Hill, most likely Lance Stephenson, Paul George, David West, and possibly Roy Hibbert. Another great defensive team that has a ton of time and talent to fix their offense for next year. 

   A young team up in Canada, the Toronto Raptors, has a great back court of Kyle Lowry and Demar Derozan. Both young players can compete and out play with the Cavs Kyrie and Wiggins. As they continue to grow, the Cavaliers will have to watch out for the Canadian team and keep a close eye. 

    Finally, Lebron and Cleveland will have to challenge Miami in the East. A lot of people seem to be counting Miami out of challenging the Bulls, Pacers, and Cavs in the east, but I feel that they will surprise some people. Of course, Miami has aging super stars Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade, but everyone seems to be counting Wade and Bosh as washed up and old. Bosh only missed 3 games last season and averaged 16 PPG, while one shooting 12 field goals. With Bosh taking most of the shots next season, he'll be averaging in the mid 20's in points next season. If Wade is able to be slightly more healthy and play in about 60-65 games, there will be another 19-5-5 player there (He actually did average 19 points on 14 field goals, and with more field goals, he will be averaging in the 20's). Luol Deng has been added to the roster and he averaged 16 points per game last season, and still has a motor in him. Finally, the Heat have a great coach and role players. Spoelstra will handle this team with excellence and lead them to a relatively good seed in the playoffs. Chalmers and Cole are still quality point guards, Ray Allen is still there (For now), Danny Granger is an all-around good player and veteran, and the birdman will provide some fire. With Lebron gone, they will not be one of the best teams in the NBA, but I definitely see them fighting with Toronto, Indiana, and even Cleveland for a 2,3,4,5 spot in the East (I honestly wouldn't be surprised to see Miami and Cleveland face off in the playoffs). 

(NOT TO MENTION: The Western Conference is filled with 6 great teams that are greater than or equal to any of the teams in the East!) 

   The Cavaliers do have the greatest player in the world, and the best back court in the NBA, and therefore, will have a high seed in the East. However, the Cavs will need at least 2 years or Kevin Love to create a Championship contending team with the Western Conference. However, this move as Lebron has said, "Is bigger than basketball."

   Overall, Lebron James is choosing his home town team over a sure Eastern Conference Championship team in South Beach. If Cleveland can pull a couple more strings and grab Kevin Love, then everything changes. However, until that day ever comes, Lebron James is taking loyalty over legacy and royalty. 


Ranking the Best Destinations For Lebron


    With free agency beginning yesterday, teams are going crazy trying to grab the two biggest free agent, Lebron James. The Mavericks made a trade for Chandler and Felton to clear cap space, the Bulls cleared cap space with a trade for Doug McDermott, the Knicks have grabbed a real point guard to take pressure of Melo (If he goes back), and the Heat's big three have all opted out of their contract to create more cap space. For Houston and LA, well they are just setting up meetings to talk to Lebron. Overall, all of these teams have some positives and negatives. But at the end of the day, there are better choices in looking for a championship than others. 

Lebron's Best Destinations:

1. Miami Heat - Lebron's team for the past four years is the best bet in winning a Championship for Lebron. The Heat have already reached 4 finals in a row, and even without making any moves over the off-season, will probably reach the Finals again (With Lebron). However, Lebron wants to WIN the Finals, not just reach his 6th (If he loses his next Finals, he will be 2-4 in Finals, and we all know what the Kobe and Jordan lovers will say...). This problem, however, is small. Pat Riley is at the front office at the Miami Heat organization, and he knows how to fix the Heat's struggles at point guard and their surrounding players. He has already started by drafting Shabazz Napier (Although he is not going to instantly change the Heat into Champions), and this is a start. For Lebron, the safest bet in reaching the Finals, and winning, has to be in the hands of Pat Riley and the Miami Heat. 

2. Chicago Bulls - After the Miami Heat, the best destination is in Chicago. Chicago already has a great supporting cast, and have added to their role players by trading for Doug McDermott in the draft. Chicago struggled to shoot last year, and McDermott, who shot 45% from three in college, will help. However, one player cannot flip the switch to a great three point shooting team. Lebron is a passer who needs three point shooters to spread the floor, and in order for Lebron to go to Chicago, they need to keep adding shooters (Chicago was 24th in three point percentage in 2014). Finally, I don't know if Lebron wants to live in the shadow of Michael Jordan in Chicago. He already is living partially in his shadow as the best player in the NBA, but going to Chicago would only exemplify the shadow. Although the two major problems of Jordan and lack of shooters, I still believe Chicago is the best bet. They have the best defense in the NBA, and Lebron would only make it greater, they have a great coach, and have reached the Conference Finals with their team (With Lebron they could go all the way and win). 

3. Dallas Mavericks - Another team in the west, the Mavericks boast strong positives in bringing Lebron to Dallas, Texas. First off, as I have stated, Lebron is a great passer, and the Mavericks had the 2nd best three point percentage in the past season. Lebron could feed anyone on the court, and they would be able to fire up a three. Lebron would also get a chance to defeat his demon, the San Antonio Spurs. In the past season, the Spurs and Mavericks went to seven games and the Mavericks team offense pushed the Spurs to the limit. Lebron is a major team player, and with more talent, would definitely be considered favorites versus San Antonio. Lebron would also be paired with Dirk and Monta Ellis, who are a lot like Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh. Monta has even compared himself to Wade, and Dirk is, without a doubt, better than Bosh. Finally, when Dallas won a Championship in 2011, they played great defense in the playoffs, and the big key was Tyson Chandler. With the addition of Chandler, Felton, and if Lebron comes, they would have great defenders at point guard (Not great, but good), small forward, and center. It's hard to find a problem with this team other than the Heat and Bulls have a for sure chance of making the Finals. Overall, the Mavericks would be a very good choice for Lebron. 

4. Houston Rockets - The Rockets are a young team with great stars, and it would be an interesting combination of Harden, Lebron, and Howard. However, I say interesting in a manner that offers a good and bad connotation. Harden shoots 22 field goals per game, more than Carmelo, and I don't know if he would want to limit field goals. He has proven how great he is, and he might want to keep improving. We saw two years ago, Howard had problems with another star, Kobe Bryant. There was fighting, feuding, and an explosion at the end. However, this scenario of feuding could be quite irrelevant to them, as Lebron is friends with Howard, has never feuded, a much better and willing passer than Kobe, and I just don't see it happening. With Harden, I see Lebron and him pairing together like Dwyane Wade. Harden will take a couple less shots, Lebron would be the passer and leader, and everyone would get some shots. Also, Lebron would be surrounded by great shooters on the Houston Rockets as the Rockets shot and made the most three pointers in the past season. However, with the two positives of a big three and shooters, the Rockets are in the west and have a terrible defense. The west is tremendously talented, and the Rockets would have to bond very fast. The Rockets were also ranked 23rd in opponents points per game, and Lebron would have to take a large part in the defensive role. Would Harden and Howard step up and play better defense, or would Lebron have to do everything. Overall, Lebron to Houston would not be a horrible idea, but it would not be the best choice. 

5. Phoenix Suns - The Phoenix Suns have recently jumped into free agency talked, and there's a reason. Phoenix is a great, young, talented team on the rise, that needs one more star to be a title contender. If Lebron joins, the Phoenix Suns immediately become favorites to win the title. For Lebron, he will be surrounded by great shooters, as the team shot better from three than the Miami Heat. He won't have to worry about bringing the ball up the court, as the Suns start two great guards in Goran Dragic and "Mini-Lebron" (Eric Bledsoe). Lebron would also improve on a defense, that had a better opponent field goal percentage than the Miami Heat. With all the positives, there is on the opposite side, some negatives. The Suns are in the west, and even with Lebron, do not boast as much talent as some of the western conference teams. At the big men position, no one averaged more than 8 rebounds per game, and the Suns lack talent at center and power forward. They have good role players, but no one like Joakim Noah and Chris Bosh. At the end of the day, the Suns would be a good land for Lebron, but not great. 


At the end of the day, Lebron's best bet is past team and Chicago. Most people believe he is giving Miami one more chance this season, and I believe the same. Lebron to Miami! 

(For those asking where's Cleveland: The only two positives are young talent and it's Lebron's home town. But I don't see Lebron risking his future for a team with a horrible owner, who still hates Lebron). 




Who Will Win the Pennant: Giants or Dodgers?


  Clayton Kershaw, the two-time Cy Young, was on the mound for LA in against St. Louis. Tim Hudson, the long time veteran, was on the mound for SF against Cincinnati. Both teams best pitchers were on the mound to fight for the NL West. Although it is only June, the All-Star break is soon on the calendar, and every team wants to have momentum heading into the second half of the season. 

   Kershaw took the mound for LA and pitched a stellar game with 13 strike outs, 7 scoreless innings (Making it 28 straight scoreless innings), and a win. Hudson also pitched a great game, with only 2 earned runs in 8 innings, but his own team did not show up. Homer Bailey, for the Reds, threw a 3 hit shutout and the Giants were unable to score one run. For the Dodgers, they smashed the opposing Cardinals pitcher, Shelby Miller, and scored 6 runs in 5 innings. 

At the end of the day, LA had defeated St. Louis and had tied the NL West pennant. 

     With the Giants in a struggle in the past 10 games, going 3-7, the Dodgers have taken their chance to catch San Francisco, going 7-3. LA has had their pitching crew step up, as their opponents are averaging 2.2 runs per game (in the past 10 games), and have all their starting pitchers with an ERA under 4.00. 

   San Francisco has had their pitching rotation playing slightly below average, but their hitting as the main problem. The Giants are averaging 2 runs per game in the last 10 games, and averaged slightly more than 1 run per game when swept by Cincinnati. 

Now, with NL West, the main question will be: 

Which team will surge ahead? 

  Looking at the momentum, the Dodgers would be the favorable pick with a 7-3 record in the past 10 games, and SF with a 3-7 record. Not to mention, the Giants have recently been swept by the Cincinnati Reds. 

   Looking at the schedule, the Dodgers have the better chance of taking over the number one spot with the Cleveland Indians next on the schedule. San Francisco has the Cardinals up next, who are not a great team, but more of a challenge than the Indians. 

  Finally, looking at both the teams, the Dodgers seem to have the better team with better players. LA has possibly the best pitching rotation in baseball, with a starting pitcher average of a 2.77 ERA. With their worst starting pitcher being Josh Becket, who has been a runner up in the Cy Young and a three time all-star, the Dodgers pitching crew has little worries. 

  On offense, the Dodgers are not a fantastic hitting team, but they are definitely filled with potential and the greatness. LA is the 10th best run scoring team in the MLB, with 3 players hitting above .340 on base percentage, and Puig, Adrian Gonzalez, and Hanley Ramirez hitting more than 10 home runs. Not to mention, Matt Kemp, who has been in a 2 year slump, has had a great June of a .320 average and .380 on base percentage. With the Dodgers great pitching crew, there is not much pressure on the Dodgers hitters, which will, and has resulted in very good hitting. 

   However, on the other side, the Giants are not a horrible team. They have a good starting rotation of Madison Bumgarner and Tim Hudson leading the way with a 2.59 and 2.90 ERA. After Hudson and Madison, the rotation somewhat drops off with former greats in Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain having a combined 4.40 ERA. However, both are veterans, who can provide great performances in needed times. In fact, Lincecum threw a no-no a week ago! 

  On offense, the Giants have, again, a good line up. When Angel Pagan returns from the 15 day DL, he brings a great .307 average to the team. With Hunter Pence and Buster Posey teaming up to average a .293 average in the 2nd and 3rd spot, Pablo Sandoval and Mike Morse has a chance to bat in some runs. Sandoval and Morse have a combined 20 home runs this season, and finish a good combination of getting on base and batting in runs. 

   However, although the Giants are very good team filled with very good players, the Dodgers over shadow them with great players and a great team. The Dodgers average more runs, a better ERA, and force opponents into a tough night in scoring runs in the field. Not only do the Dodgers seem to have better players, but they finish ahead of the Giants in runs, opponents runs, ERA, and almost every statistical category. 

   At the end of the season, we will find that the tough early start for the Dodgers meant nothing, as the Dodgers look like they will over take the NL West and win the pennant at the end of the year. 

Lebron Opts Out of Contract - One Man Holds Lebron's Future In His Hands


One minute I'm walking to the DMV, next minute I'm sitting in the parking lot listening to all the sports radios I can find. Who wants to go to the DMV anyways? 

The man that has delayed my day is Lebron James. Lebron has been big news in the past couple of weeks with the controversy of him possibly opting out of his contract. "Lebron's going back to Miami for another Title" "Lebron isn't loyal, he'll leave Miami the first chance he gets." 

Welp, today Lebron officially has opted out, and is testing free agency. Already I have heard Cleveland fans having different mind sets of, "Well, I used to hate him, but now that he has to chance to come back....." First off, Lebron has not left the Heat for good. 

He has opted out of his contract which means he is a free agent. This is not a game of tag with "No tag backs!" The Heat can resign him and Lebron can be in a Heat uniform in 2015. It would be like this off-season never mattered. 

Second, Lebron makes his own choices, but he is not the one totally controlling where he goes. Loyalty and the home town Cleveland are not a huge influence on Lebron right now. LA, New York, and the big cities are not on his mind. One player has quite a large part in where Lebron will be heading:

Dwyane Wade. 

Wade has been Lebron's sidekick since 2010 when James joined Miami. He has taken a step back, let Lebron take over the team, and proven just how great of a person, and teammate, he really is. But now, Wade has a bigger test ahead of him:

Will he demand 20 million dollar contract and have Lebron flee Miami, or take a 9 or 10 million dollars and have a chance at another title with Lebron? 

Right now, Lebron is looking for a title and to expand his legacy to greater heights. If Wade takes a large contract, the Heat will be stuck in mud with finding better players to surround Lebron and Wade. We saw in the 2014 Finals how terrible his teammates played (It was the 2010 Cavs all over again), and Lebron knows he needs better players and better performances. With Wade taking a large contract, it makes it nearly impossible to surround Lebron. 

However, with Wade taking a smaller deal, the Heat have a variety of moves to make in the off-season. With Pat Riley in the front office, magic will happen and Lebron will have great teammates in 2015. 

All in all, Lebron heading to Miami or moving in a different direction depends on one man, Dwyane Wade. Ya, maybe the home town move still hurts from 2010, but right now, Lebron is looking towards Dwyane Wade for an answer. 

Turning Point For Chris Davis?


 Chris Davis has had a relatively terrible year after a exceptional season in the past year. After hitting .286, hitting 53 home runs, and batting in 138 runs, Davis is hitting .216, with 12 home runs, and 37 RBI's. Although he is still hitting with power, he is no where near his pace from last season. 

 Davis has turned into an Adam Dunn this season, going for the long ball and actually striking out only 5 less times than Dunn this year (Dunn is leading the AL in strike outs). He will most likely not be voted an all star, unlike last year, and will not participate in the home run derby. 

 However, as we all know, in baseball, momentum and slumps can change in an instant. For the Orioles, this might be their break. Chris Davis has hit a 3-run, game winning home run to defeat the Chicago White Sox. 

 Davis pinch hit for Delmon Young and took advantage by hitting a bomb into the right field porch. Ronald Belisario had Davis in mud with a 1-2 count, but Davis fouled off a ball, and took two straight balls. With a full count, Davis took Young deep against Chicago to reach a 6-4 win. 

 With Davis struggling this year, and the all-star break coming up, this could help Davis' confidence and play before the all-star break. Orioles fans are praying for him to join Adam Jones and Nelson Cruz in hitting some home runs, and possibly give the Orioles the most powerful line up in the MLB. 

What do you think? Will Chris Davis turn his season around? 

Kawhi Leonard Wins Finals MVP As Spurs Win 5th NBA Championship


     With the Heat down 3-1 in the series, and on the road, most everyone has been counting them out: "The Heat are done." Or in Stephen A Smith's words: "THERE IS ABSOLUTE NO CHANCE OF THE HEAT COMING BACK" 

    However, whether anyone wants to believe they will comeback or not, there is always the next game. And in the 2014 NBA Finals, it was game five. And for the Heat to comeback, the only way to look at the series is quarter by quarter. 

    And in quarter one of game five, they jumped out to an early lead led with their leader and and a little bit of luck. On offense, Lebron had an ultimate takeover as he scored 9 of their first 11 points. On defense, they did not necessarily play great, but instead, it was the Spurs just not finishing their looks. 

    Tony Parker got a wide open three point look: Clank. Tim Duncan shot an uncontested 20 foot jumper: Clank. Parker had another wide open pull up jumper: Clank. Nothing was falling for the Spurs, and they started 0-6 from the field. 

      With the mixture of Lebron playing out of his mind and the Spurs not finishing opportunities, the Heat jumped out to a 22-6 lead. 

     However, as Jeff Van Gundy said, the game was still looking good for San Antonio. The Heat were relying on one player, while the Spurs were getting great looks from the field. All the Spurs needed was a little offensive boost and momentum. In other words, Manu Ginobili. 

    Manu came into the game at the 9 minute mark, but started making his mark after the 16 point deficit. Manu made an "and-one" tough lay up, knocked down a three, and assisted to Kawhi Leonard for a three. Just like that, the Spurs had cut a big lead to just 7 points. 

    For the rest of the quarter, the Heat went to Lebron, while the Spurs played as a team. At the end of the first, Lebron was enough to lead the Heat to a 29-22 lead. 

    In the second quarter, the Heat continued to go to Lebron. However, as everyone knows, no one can win a game alone. And for everyone watching, game five second quarter was a perfect example, as Lebron was unable to find open looks. Lebron was unable to score, and only make plays, and like the entire series, NO ONE on the Heat stepped up. 

    Lebron made great plays to find open looks, but no one on the Heat was able to step up and help Lebron. On the other side, the Spurs had everyone stepping up in the series, but in second quarter of game five, it was Kawhi Leonard, Tim Duncan, and Manu Ginobili making plays. 

    Leonard got the Spurs back in the game, as he scored 6 straight points to cut the lead to three points. After Leonard, Duncan decided to help out as he scored 6 of the Spurs next 8 points. Just like that, the Spurs had cut a 16 point lead to 1 point. Now, all the Spurs needed was to get over the hump and take their first lead of the game. Who else than the future Finals MVP, Kawhi Leonard? Leonard played great defense on Lebron, grabbed the rebound, ran down the court and hit a pull up jumper. 

    The Spurs had taken the 37-35 lead with their continual 29-15 run, and only looked to extend the lead. Unlike Miami with Lebron, the Spurs had many different players who could take over a game in this series. Manu then came in to help Duncan and Leonard, as he scored 8 straight points and stretched the lead to 8 points. Manu about caused a riot as he threw down a monster dunk over Chris Bosh and then hit a pull up three. The Spurs had gone on a 39-15 run over a 16 minute stretch! 


    The Heat continued to struggle to find offense, as Lebron cannot win an entire game going 1 on 5. As Bill Simmons put, "Lebron's on the 2010 Cavs again!" No one showed up to help Lebron in the Finals, while the entire Spurs had the heart of a champion and all were contributing. 

   By the end of the half, the Spurs had Manu with 14 points, Leonard with 15, Duncan with 8, and the entire team with a 47-40 lead over Miami. 

   The scariest part of the Spurs lead for Miami: Tony Parker and Danny Green hadn't scored a single point....

   In the third quarter, for the second straight game, there was no push for the Miami Heat. The Heat shot 1-9 from the field, and scored only 2 points in the first 5 and a half minutes in the game. The Spurs were helping on Lebron everywhere on the court, and the Heat's counter parts were doing nothing (Wade and Bosh shooting  On the other side, the Spurs were slowly extending the lead. After the first 3 minutes, the Spurs scored on 8 straight possessions to push the lead to 21. 

   While Lebron was the only player who showed up in the Finals for Miami (5 bench points before 4th quarter), the Spurs had 48 bench points with everyone contributing throughout the entire game. 

   Specifically for San Antonio, the native from Australia, Patty Mills, took over the game as he hit 4 three's, and one jumper, in the third quarter for 14 points. Mills was the final deal for Miami, as the Spurs had already started celebrating and the Heat already mentally checked out (Although almost everyone had been mentally gone since game one). 


    By the end of the third, the Spurs had a 35 point swing since the first quarter, and were up 77-58. The Heat had scored 29 points in the first quarter, and then 29 total from the 2nd and 3rd quarter. Lebron had scored 46% of the Heat's points and was still shooting Michael Jordan's career field goal percentage. On the other end, the Spurs bench had 51% of their points, while Miami's bench had 17% of their points. 

    Miami had tried to win a Championship as a team led by Lebron, a play-maker, but when his teammates fall apart, he can no longer play make, just score. As everyone knows, no one can win a Championship this way, and the Spurs, who had one of the best benches in NBA history (Plus 3 Hall of Famers), took advantage. 

    At the end of the day, people need to stop over analyzing or blaming the series on one person. The Spurs had one of the greatest NBA Finals performances of all time, and were the better, more hungry team. Miami seemed to have a lazy heart (Besides Lebron), while San Antonio had the heart of Napoleon. 

   San Antonio celebrated the NBA Finals with Kawhi Leonard as NBA Finals MVP (17.8 PPG) and a final score of 104-87. 

Spurs Blow Out Heat And Win Game Four of the NBA Finals


      After one of the greatest offensive performances of all time, the San Antonio Spurs looked to make a commanding 3-1 lead in the series. The Spurs had momentum, as they destroyed Miami and were playing great as a team, while Miami was not playing together. In fact, Miami had 37 possessions of only 2 passes or less, while San Antonio had 25 possessions with 6+ passes! 


       The Heat were looking to start out great, as they needed a boost. However, that was not the case in game four. The Spurs started out of the game with a 13-4 lead, as the Spurs were getting okay looks, but the Heat were taking horrible shots, late in the shot clock. The Spurs were not moving the ball like crazy, but players were still moving and Parker, Green, and Leonard got some open looks from three. Green actually hit two three's in the first, with one being a relatively contested shot. On defense, the Spurs forced Lebron to take three's over Tim Duncan, Chris Bosh hook shots and long jumpers over Duncan, and almost all shots late in the shot clock. 

 

        The Heat quickly picked up the pace with a mini 6-0 run of 3 terrible Spurs possessions and Bosh and Wade hitting a couple of good shots. However, from  the 5 minute mark, the Spurs went a much longer run than the Heat. 


        The Spurs used their bench to their advantage as the Spurs bench out scored the Heat 9-2 in the first (9-2 on the run), while the Heat's role players continued their struggles. By the end of the quarter, the Spurs had EIGHT different players scoring, and were walking into the 2nd with a 26-17 lead. 


       In the second, the Heat came out with more urgency and got some help with Ray Allen knocking down two three's. However, the Spurs unbelievable and consistent offense continued as Boris Diaw made a great, behind the back pass to Splitter for a wide open dunk.  The Heat were playing with more urgency, but the question remained as the Heat might have been too late in finally waking up. The Spurs went up 42-28 halfway through the 2nd, and the Spurs were out-assisting the Heat 11-4, and shooting 19% better than the Heat. Not to mention, another great game from Kawhi Leonard who contained Lebron with 2 blocks, and Lebron shooting 3/7 with only 9 points. 




      Just as the Heat seemed to be gaining more energy, the Spurs just killed off everything, as the Heat had poor body language. Wade, who was 1-7 in the first half, looked sluggish, Lebron flung the ball to a referee, and American Airlines Arena was silent (Hi Luke). 


      Lebron looked dead, Wade was playing terrible, Bosh did nothing in the second quarter, and the Spurs were playing through their deep bench. By the end of the half, the Spurs bench had out-scored the Heat's bench 19-11 Not only was the bench playing better, but the stars were getting time to rest and not have to worry about losing momentum. The energy and rest came into hand as the stats tell the entire story:


Spurs: 56% shooting from field with 12 assists and 25 rebounds 

Heat: 35% shooting from field with 4 assists and 14 rebounds 


      And, as the Heat exited through the locker room, the first sounds of boos came from their home-town fans...


Halftime: 55-36 Spurs


       In the third quarter, Lebron came out firing as he scored 10 of 12 points for the Heat. Lebron was able to cut the lead to 13 points, but then the Spurs rested players came right back. Duncan, who had played 7 less minutes, and Diaw, who had played 5 less minutes, led a 7-0 run to push the lead back to 20 points. 


      Nearing the end of the third, down by 24 points, boo's started to shatter American Airlines Arena. Honestly, the fourth quarter did not matter to me or anyone else, as the game was over. The Spurs were up 3-1 in the NBA Finals. Done.


      The Spurs have the better team, while the Heat do not have enough players to defeat the stacked Spurs line up. San Antonio had 13 players scoring regularly, 6 with at least 8 points, the Heat had 10, with 5 scoring at least 8 points. Miami had 7 assists by the end of the third, while the Spurs finished the third with 16, Miami was shooting 39% from the field, while San Antonio finished with 54% from the field. Anyway you look at it, the Spurs had more energy, won in every statistical category, and were simply put, the better team. 


          Can Lebron, who scored 28 points on 10 of 14 shooting (Through only 32 minutes) and 19 points on 7/8 shooting in the third, lead the Heat over the stacked Spurs team? 


       The answer to me is simple: No. The Spurs have a top five, possibly top three, bench/role playing team in the history of basketball. For the Heat, they had Lebron. Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Ray Allen, Mario Chalmers, Norris Cole, did not step up. The Spurs had 9 players step up. At the end of the game, the Spurs had 25 assists, had shot 57%, and grabbed 44 boards. On the other end, Miami had only 13 assists, 45 FG%, and only 27 rebounds. 


        Don't scream and yell at Lebron, praise the Spurs, and question the other 11 players on the Miami Heat. Either way, at the end of the day, no comeback was great enough to overcome the massive 24 point deficit faced at the end of the third. The Spurs went on to win 107-86 and have a commanding 3-1 lead over the Miami Heat in the 2014 NBA Finals. 


Spurs Unbelievable Offense Leads to Game Three Win Over the Miami Heat


   After a monstrous performance from Lebron James in game two, the Heat looked to continue to win in game three. Starting out of the gate, the Spurs and Heat were on fire from the field. Both teams started 9 for 9 from the field with the Spurs attacking the basket, and Miami making tough shots. 

   However, the major change in the first quarter came with Danny Green on defense, and Mario Chalmers on offense. Danny Green had two great steals (Against Dwyane Wade!) that led to two wide open lay ups/dunks, and then Mario Chalmers, who the Heat needed to step up, started the game with 3 horrendous misses. He had three good chances to bounce back, but all three were terrible misses. He played to such an extent of poor play, that when he left the floor when substituting for Norris Cole, the Miami crowd cheered!

   On the other end, the Spurs needed to bounce back with attacking basketball, and more importantly, Kawhi Leonard. Leonard had played mediocre in the past two games, as he was matched up against the best player in the NBA, but the Spurs needed more out of their future star. Unlike Chalmers, Leonard stepped up in a big way. 

   Like his Spurs team, he started driving to the basket as he made three free throws, and a great lay up. Then, he took a step back and started firing from three point land. To put in simplest terms, he was great. Leonard made three of his three, three point attempts and came out just as the Spurs needed. 

    At the end of the third quarter, the Spurs had made a statement by driving to the basket, Leonard going off for 16 points in the first, Chalmers and Cole not showing up, Lebron playing great (14 points in first quarter, but can't lead team alone), and the Spurs having the 2nd greatest FG% quarter in the NBA Finals. The Spurs walked out of the first quarter with a 41-25 lead. The Spurs were on pace for 164 points!

    My biggest questions going into the 2nd quarter were, "Will Wade, Bosh, Chalmers, or Cole show up and help Lebron?" And: "Will the Spurs MISS!?" 

     In the second quarter, the game was absolutely no different as the Spurs continued their great offense, and the Heat's non-Lebron players struggling. The Spurs were passing the ball with no hesitation (Finished half with 15 assists compared to Heat's 11 assists) and had the greatest offensive performance I had ever seen. Halfway through the second quarter, the Spurs were shooting 90%! NINETY PERCENT! To put in perspective, the Spurs went from the 5:05 mark in the first quarter to the 6:23 mark without missing! 

     On the other end, the Heat were committing turnover after turnover, as the Heat started out the second quarter with 4 of 6 possessions ending with turnovers. The question that was revolving around the world continued: "Can Lebron single handily win the Finals, or will the other big three/role players have to show up?" At the point where San Antonio was up by 20, Lebron had 16 points, while Bosh and Wade had 4 points. 

   The Heat actually did make a stint where they were close to making it a game a little past the 6 minute mark. Rashard Lewis made three straight three pointers, Allen made a three, Wade hit a jumper, and the American Airlines Arena was getting back into the game. The Heat were within 14 points and looking to cut the lead even more. 

    However, as the Heat played well on offense, the Spurs more than matched them as they played out of their mind. After Ray Allen made a three to cut the lead to 14 points, the Spurs went on a 7-0 run with all three buckets coming off of assists from three different players. 

    At the end of the half, the Heat weren't playing terrible (55% from floor), but the Spurs were shooting (75.8%) the greatest field goal percentage in an NBA Finals half of all time. The Spurs were playing the greatest team basketball I have ever seen. Although, the Spurs did have their role players (And everyone else) show up and give a needed performance, while Chalmers, Wade (5 turnovers at half), and Bosh did not step up (Chalmers with 0 points, Wade and Bosh with 6, Lebron with 16!) The only reason the game was only 71-50 was for the Heat's three point shooters and Lebron. 

   At halftime, I was in wonder of what Erik Spoelstra would say to his team: "There's always game four?" "Fight back?" Well, as we all guessed, he told his team to not give up. However, unlike most coaches, he is a real motivator who doesn't give cheesy speeches. At half he said, "We don't have to make a 20 point play. Cut in half and take it slowly. Will it be easy? NO WE'RE IN THE FINALS."

    In the beginning of the third quarter, the Heat lived by that statement. The other part of the big three showed up to help out as Wade and Bosh scored the first 6 points of the first half. From there, the Heat's big three took over on offense. Wade, Bosh, and Lebron scored 12 of the 14 points in the first 6 minutes, and got two wide open three's in a row. The three's could have cut the lead to single digits, but instead, Wade and Chalmers both missed and the Heat could only cut the lead to 13 points. 

   Then Lebron came out, and it looked like the Heat had lost their best chance of coming back. Remember that important question the entire series? "Can Lebron win on his own? Will his teammates step up?"

   Well, in cutting the lead to single digits, the answer was yes. Dwyane Wade and the role players led his team on a 10-0 run, and cut the lead to 7 points! It felt like a minute ago that the Spurs were up by 21 points! However, in the third quarter, the Spurs offense was thwarted by the Heat by only scoring 15 points compared to 71 in the first half! 

    Going into the fourth quarter, the Spurs had spread the lead back to 11 points (86-75), but the Heat had still cut the lead in half (Close Enough) and had momentum. 

    In the fourth quarter, the game went back and forth for the first 6 minutes as the Heat were able to cut the lead to 10, but at the 6:00 mark, the Heat were down 98-84. In the 6 minutes, there was one man responsible for containing the Heat - Kawhi Leonard. 

    Leonard was playing perfect defense on Lebron, as Lebron only scored 4 points, and had  4 turnovers in the 4th quarter. Lebron seemed to be Leonard's puppet, and on the offensive side, the story was no different. Leonard scored 9 points in the fourth and actually out-scored Lebron 29-22 by the end of the game! 

    Leonard's 6 points, causing 3 turnovers on Lebron in the first 6 minutes of the fourth quarter was the nail coffin for Miami. Lebron was static, the Spurs had a closer, and the Spurs went up by 18 with 5 minutes left in the game. 

    At the end of the day, Kawhi Leonard was the X Factor for the Spurs. He was their leading scorer (29), ultimate defender in shutting down Lebron, and was the catalyst with Green in starting the Spurs giant lead in the first half. Not to mention, he closed out the game with shutting down Lebron and scoring 4 points in the 4th quarter. The Spurs will be heading into game four after a great 111-92 win! 


    Now, the questions heading into game four are: "Can the Spurs continue their great offense" And: "Will Lebron and the Heat respond in game four?" 

Lebron James Takes Over As the Heat Win Game Two


      After NBA Finals Game one, everyone's eyes were looking towards Lebron. The doctors said he would be 100%, he would be 100%, but today he said he felt weird. Well, coming into the game, he wasn't making his normal shots. Lebron started 0-3 in the first 7 minutes, and was not looking good. The only positive part of his game was his mindset. Lebron, Wade, Bosh, and Chalmers were taking the ball to the basket with reckless abandon. 

    They were taking no jump shots, and their aggressive nature broke down the Spurs defense. Rashard Lewis got open for a couple of three's and had 6 points in the first quarter. Overall, the Heat (47% from floor, only 5 assists, and 6 turnovers) and Lebron did not have a great start, but their mindset was perfect. 

    On the other end, the Spurs were playing great and moving the ball. The fourth quarter in game one had carried right over into game 2. The Spurs had 9 assists in the fourth quarter, shooting 58%  from the field. Duncan was a major factor in the beginning, just like game one, as he shot 5/6 from the field, threw down a monster put back dunk, and finished the quarter with 11 points. 


   At the end of the quarter, the Spurs had held the Heat to only 4 points (In last 5 minutes), and the Spurs were passing the ball, making shots, and finished the quarter strong with a 26-19 lead. 

  In the beginning of the second quarter, the Heat continued their offensive struggles with 3 straight turnovers. On the other end, the Spurs continued to move the ball, getting open looks and knocking down 2 of their first five shots. Dwyane Wade was frustrated to the extent where he threw up his hands in despair and looked to Erik Spoelstra for help. 

    Spoelstra and the Heat soon came back, however, with a 9-0 run after going down 30-19. On the Spurs offense, they went three and a half minutes with no points, as the Heat clamped down on defense (Spurs started 10-15, but then went 4-15 from field). The poor offense was a mix of missing open looks, and then the Heat forcing tough shots. The mixture led to the Heat running on the break, as the Heat got 6 straight easy points on the fast break. Finally, the Heat were getting good looks at the basket, while the Spurs were struggling to make a basket. Just like that, one bad run by the Spurs, and the Heat were back in the game. 

   To help the Heat, the refs seemed to start calling more fouls for the Heat. Most were good calls, but the iffy calls were all falling for the Heat. "Ref you suck" was filling the At&t Center. 

     Finally, with a mixture of Spurs missing open looks, turnovers, poor shots, Lebron waking up (4-5 from field, 11 points in 2nd quarter), and a little help from the refs, the Heat gained the lead with 5:07 left in the second. 

      Lebron had made the put back lay up to take the lead, but a couple seconds later, Spoelstra took him out to give him a rest - A mistake. 

      The Spurs came back with a 8-2 run with the Spurs hitting shots again (Tony Parker with 4 points on run, 12 points at half), but more importantly, the Heat hit a rough streak on offense. The ball was not moving on offense, Bosh and Wade did not step up, and the Heat 2 minutes with no field goals. 

     From this point, Spoelstra realized Lebron needed to get back in the game. Lebron came back with 3 minutes to go in the 2nd, and the Heat ended the game with a 7-2 run. It's as if the Heat cannot play good, efficient basketball without Lebron! As soon as Lebron steps on the court, his teammates start knocking down shots, of course, he makes shots (13 points in first half), and the Heat play like a Championship team (Chris Bosh with 10 points in first half - All coming while Lebron was on floor). 

     In fact, the dunk of the game, from Chris Bosh, came 5 seconds after Lebron entered the game. He had nothing to do with the dunk, but his presence just seems to comfort the Heat. 


    The Heat's end to the second quarter led to a 43-43 tie going into halftime, and since the Heat's 11 point deficit, the Spurs shot 5-18 from the floor (With 3 of the 5 makes coming while Lebron was on the bench). 

    However, the only time the Heat were playing great was when Lebron was in the game with the starting five. The question at halftime was, "Can the Heat win with only 5 players?" "Can the Heat win with Lebron playing as much as he does?"

Going into the halftime, the Heat had game momentum, but logic was sticking with the Spurs. 

    In the third quarter, the entire beginning was back and forth. In the first three minutes of the third, the Spurs scored, then the Heat, then the Spurs, then the Heat, and then the Spurs, and then the Heat. Danny Green would hit a three, but Lebron would come right back with a jumper. Parker would make a lay up, but then Chalmers would make a lay up. Everything was back and forth, and it was the perfect set up for the closing stretch. 

    For the first 6 minutes of the third, the lead never strayed from one possession, and each team was trying to get the other to crack. 

    The Spurs got the biggest lead of the third with a six point lead at the 6 minute mark, but lost it in an instant. Lebron came right back at the Spurs, when he realized Boris Diaw was guarding him, and knocked down five straight jumpers (Two as a three pointers). Since the first quarter and into the third, Lebron shot 10 for 13 from the field! Lebron had stepped up, taken over the game, and killed the momentum within the Spurs fans (14 points in third quarter!). 

    Still, Lebron was only able to stretch the lead to 5 points with the Spurs offense still rocking and rolling. Patty Mills was the main reason the Spurs still were in the game, and eventually took the lead at the end, as he hit three huge three pointers. His energy got the Spurs going, and the Spurs took the third quarter, which was a quarter of 10 lead changes, with a 78-77 lead. 

   The beginning of the fourth quarter started off with a bang, as Chris Bosh had his second posterizing jam of the night. From there, the Spurs and Heat continued their physical game as both teams shot a combined 3-11 in the inception of the fourth. 

    However, soon after the poor beginning, the Heat and Spurs fell out of their slump. Manu hit a ridiculous finger roll, Danny Green hit a terrible three pointer (That somehow went in), and Lebron hit a jumper over Kawhi Leonard. The third quarter had came right back into the fourth, and the back and forth game resumed. The Heat had Lebron and the Spurs had offensive efficiency. The main question was, again, "Can Lebron and the Big Three lead the Heat to a win alone?" 

    Then, with 6:43 to go in the game, Mario Chalmers hit Tony Parker with a cheap shot right in the rib. Parker was fine after, but the flagrant gave Parker two free throws and on the later possession, Duncan had two free throws. What was the result on all four? 

Claaannnkkk. 

     The Spurs had a chance to stretch the lead to 6 points, but did nothing and Lebron hit a tough three on the next possession. The Spurs had given up a 7 point swing with their fault in not making free throws and taking care of the lead. 

     However, as we all know, the Spurs aren't a team to give up after a tough streak. Even with Lebron stretching the lead to 3 points in the fourth, the Spurs managed to hit a three to tie the game again.

       After the Spurs jumped back from a wasted opportunity, the game became: Lebron vs the Spurs. The game had already been in Lebron's hands, but in the last couple of minutes of the game, Lebron was taking the shots. 

      With three minutes to go, the game was tied 90-90 and both teams fate were hanging in the balance. The Heat went to a pick and roll and had a beautiful play with Allen making a great pass to Chris Andersen for a lay up. However, of course, the Spurs came right back and Tony Parker knocked down a big three after great ball movement (How many times have I said that?)

     The game was stuck in the 93-92 score, as Chris Bosh and then Manu missed a contested threes. Lebron came right back on the next possession, and made a great decision to pass the ball to Chris Bosh (Who was wide open in the corner). 

Bang. 

     Chris Bosh (18 points in the game) came up clutch again and hit a huge three to put the Heat up 95-93. Although, the Spurs are the Spurs and the game is never over with Manu, Parker, Green, Duncan, and Kawhi in the game. Manu came off a screen from Duncan, found Duncan in the post and zipped a pass to Duncan. 

    There was one problem: The pass was way off of Duncan. Manu had threw the ball away and the Spurs had given up the best chance to tie the game. 

     On the next two possessions, Lebron made a free throw, moved the ball finding Wade wide open under the basket, and Manu missed another shot. 

     Lebron had taken over the game, trusted his teammates (The Big Three), while Manu and the Spurs came up short when it counted. Lebron ended the game with 35 points, and the Heat walked out with a 98-96 lead. 

The only question going into game 2 is, "Can Lebron and his starting crew beat the Spurs?"