It is hard to argue the fact that LeBron James is the best player in the game today. It is even harder to deny the success of the two-time defending champions in the Miami Heat. Despite these obvious facts, the San Antonio Spurs are still favored to come out victorious in the NBA Finals rematch.
Only one out of five NBA Finals rematches have resulted in a sweep, which would indicate that history is on the Spurs’ side. San Antonio was not just beaten in their previous Finals encounter with the Heat, they were robbed of a victory. On the road in Game 6, the Spurs had the advantage and were pretty much holding the trophy.
The Larry O’Brien trophy had been rolled onto the sidelines, the champagne was on ice in the Spurs’ locker room, and everything was in place for the imminent celebration.
The Spurs were a lesser team last year and were still expected to be the champs. So it makes sense that this year’s Spurs are favored to win it again, right? Miami may be the more exciting team with the most exciting player, and just so happen to be constructed for this exact moment; however, they don’t deserve the right to be the assumed champions. Last year was last year and has nothing to do with now.
All season long, the Heat have shown the signs of championship fatigue and weak spots in their armor. If you compare last season to this season, the Heat have lost 12 more games and finished second in the East this year. James didn’t win the NBA MVP award, and the Heat just don’t seem to be the aggressor coming into this series.
The Spurs have made it clear that they are the hunters, coming for what was rightfully theirs in the first place. Tim Duncan has made it very clear that this is how he wants to win his fifth ring and he intends on finishing the job this time. Everything about this time around feels different, which is why the Heat remain the underdogs.