by Justin Carter
I mean, the title of this post is a little misleading. Sample size. Three games. The Spurs opening quarter from last night won’t be replicated. Miami’s best player missed the end of Game One.
Really, we’re looking at a series with two abnormalities. Game Two was the closest we’ve had to a normal basketball game in this series, & even that game didn’t teach us much– the Heat played well, the Spurs played well, & neither team stood out over the other. A few missed FTs that had gone differently, & the Spurs are up three-nothing.
So, we’re back where we were last year– the Spurs up two games to one after three.
Anyway, here’s some things I’ve learned so far, & some predictions for the rest of the series.
Chalmers is a free agent this Summer & he’s playing his way out of a job. Chalmers has been BAD all series, prompting the Heat to run with a PG-less lineup for extended stretches the past two games. LeBron can do the whole point-forward thing pretty well, so unless Chalmers finds his three-point shot early in Game Four, expect his minutes to dwindle.
& what does this mean for the Heat going forward? Not much in this series, because we’re going to see more of these non-PG lineups regardless of how Chalmers looks, & if his shots don’t drop in limited minutes, someone else will step up. But if Chalmers loses role on this team, the Heat could have some options in the offseason– Kyle Lowry for the MLE probably won’t happen, but what about Shaun Livingston? Or a sign & trade of Chalmers for (Note: I’m not checking salaries right now, so these might be impossible) someone like Jeremy Lin (Note: as a Rockets fan, I don’t think I want this kind of thing to happen, because I don’t want Chalmers) or Jameer Nelson?
The Spurs Hitting Threes
I don’t think San Antonio can miss a three. The Miami defense has to figure something out or this series is done.
Needs to be a little more aggressive, but he’s had a solid series (minus the cramps). Really, the Big Three haven’t been bad. Chris Bosh made a huge shot in Game Two & Wade looks much better than he did last year.
Battier is out of the Heat rotation, which means Rashard Lewis had better keep playing well if Miami has a chance.
Leonard was meh in the first two games, but last night he exploded for twenty-nine points & didn’t miss a two-pointer. If he keeps playing like that?
I originally went Heat in 6, which seems unlikely now. I’m still picking the Heat, this time in seven, because the one game in this series that did make sense went Miami’s way, but I can see the Spurs stealing Game Four & effectively silencing Miami. Idk. We’ll see what happens.