One of the greatest gifts an athlete can possess is the ability to bounce back from negativity and block out a bad game, bad report or bad quarter. It’s a special kind of arrogance that lets them know that they’re good enough. But at times, the Miami Heat give off an air that they believe they’re too good — like they took a sip of the South Beach “greatness” drink that the media constantly brings up.
In a way, last night was no different with LeBron James either taking the “I can turn it on whenever” approach or just being utterly uninterested in playing either side of the ball for the first three quarters. All of the outlets will give him the credit for showing up in the fourth, but Dwyane Wade’s 23 points, five assists and five rebounds showed that he was the one able to put the Game 1 loss in the past. On the other hand, Chris Bosh and Mario Chalmers were borderline nonexistent again.
Bosh chucked up shots that could’ve chipped the rim if he was shooting with actual bricks. And in the midst of forgetting how to shoot, he also took a shot to his defensive prowess because an inability to stay in front of the Indiana Pacers’ slow-footed David West.
Couple that with Chalmers being the bad version of himself — with the five turnovers and constant flopping that hasn’t gone his way for the majority of his 83-games — and it was pretty much D-Wade and the bench mob.
As the series goes on, Miami will need the subs to bring exactly what they brought with the defensive intensity, especially a player like Norris Cole, who went from the missing persons list to flying around with the energy and effort to trap the pick-and-roll like he was guarding Chris Paul. However, his greatest defensive play may have been leaving West blurry after a poke to the eye.
It was a great effort from some in a big win, but James said, “We’re not comfortable and we’re not satisfied at all.” Sounds like a shot of humble arrogance, if you will; because in all reality, true winners need a healthy sip of both.