It is not often that you tune into a basketball game that starts with a unified statement that could bury an NBA owner, then ends with one team’s stars giving the other team’s owner a congratulatory hug as they put the nail in his franchise’s coffin.
And therein lies the difference between Donald Sterling and Michael Jordan. While Sterling awaits the fate of his racist rant and players around the league rally to show Los Angeles Clipper solidarity, Jordan is being celebrated for the progress of his Charlotte Bobcats before they become the league’s new Hornets.
Simply put, you have the most hated versus a guy who was likely the sports father of people like LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.
Which brings me to this: I don’t know if they were showing too much respect or the weight of trying to take a stand became too heavy, but the Miami Heat came out like they forgot how to compete against a team that didn’t feature Al Jefferson killing them on one leg.
Instead they chose another two quarters of going through the motions, while Kemba Walker relived his “One Shinning Moment” like he was back in the NCAA tournament.
It literally took a James collision with Bismack Biyombo for the Heat to begin to ball with a sense of urgency — as if they realized that they should probably stop playing around before a serious injury happened.
This wasn’t a great victory, but it was good to see Miami buy themselves some time while helping Charlotte put a horrible nickname to rest.