The big story before tip-off in San Antonio was the fact that LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Mario Chalmers would all be held out Sunday night against the Spurs due to various injuries.
By the time the game was over, the Heat had come away with an unexpected 88-86 victory, thanks to the last-second heroics of the one Miami All-Star who did play in this game, Chris Bosh.
With the Heat trailing by one and less than 10 seconds remaining, the Heat rebounded a miss from Tim Duncan in the lane, and advanced the ball up the floor for their final offensive possession.
Bosh trailed the play at the top of the three-point arc, and Ray Allen found him there, as Bosh calmly drained the game-winner from three-point distance.
Bosh ranks ninth on the Heat in three-point field goal percentage, yet had no trouble knocking down this one with the game hanging in the balance.
It’s tough to blame San Antonio for the letdown to a certain extent, given the fact that Miami was without three of its five starters. But should the Spurs face the Heat in the NBA Finals, and if the regular season records of the two teams don’t end up finishing that far apart in the overall standings, San Antonio may look back on this game with regret as they’re forced to open the championship round on the road in Miami against the defending champs.
PBT Extra: What did Phil Jackson think he would accomplish with shot at ‘Melo?
Phil Jackson wants us to know Carmelo Anthony can hold on to the ball too long and stall out the offense.
Shocking. Such a revelation. It’s not like he knew that when he gave Anthony a five-year contract extension… oh, wait, everybody did know that already.
Which leads to my criticism of Jackson in this PBT Extra. Taking a shot at a player as a coach who sees said player every day comes off differently than the same thing from the ivory tower criticism of a GM. Plus, Jackson’s timing made no sense.
Carmelo Anthony says Phil Jackson’s comments “temporary black cloud over our heads”
The New York Knicks were on a four-game winning streak, they have looked like a potential playoff team in the East, team chemistry has been pretty good, and there seemed to be more sun shining on Madison Square Garden then we have seen in a few years.
“At the end of the day we’re playing good basketball,” Anthony said. “That’s the only thing that matters at this point. So any negativity that’s coming towards me or towards the team, I don’t think we need it at this point…
“I feel like we’re playing good basketball, and just to have a temporary black cloud over our heads,” he said. “I don’t know when the comments were made or the gist of them, I just know something was said.”
Anthony is spot on here. Jackson isn’t wrong that Anthony can hold the ball too long, but Jackson knew that when he gave Anthony a five-year contract extension. Also, the Sports VU camera data shows Anthony is holding the ball less and dribbling a little less than previous seasons.
But the real question: What did Jackson think he would accomplish with this? He’s too smart, too calculated — he doesn’t just say things to the press without a motive. But with everything going about as well as one could hope with the Knicks, and with Anthony not at a point in his career he’s going to change his game, what’s the point?
Anthony has a right to be ticked.
Report: NYPD nearing arrest of Matt Barnes over club assault
Now things could get worse for Barnes, NYPD may be looking to arrest him, reports Graham Rayman of the New York Daily News.
“They’ve got enough to charge Barnes with an assault on a woman,” a police source said. “It will probably be a misdemeanor assault on one of the females who was pushed or choked or sustained some sort of injury. She’s obviously cooperating.”
Cousins, a key member of the gold medal-winning U.S. Olympic basketball team, will likely not be charged, the source said.
According to the lawsuit, Jasmine Besiso was knocked unconscious by a Barnes’ elbow, while her boyfriend, Myrone Powell, was punched by Cousins.
The Kings released this statement, which came out before the lawsuit or current report: “We have clear standards of conduct and behavior expected of the entire Kings organization – on and off the court. We are working with all parties involved to gather information in order to take any appropriate next steps.”
It’s tough to see Magic general manager Rob Hennigan parting with any of those four. They’re too integral to his record.
Mostly, it’s interesting 10-13 Orlando is seeking to plug its biggest immediate hole rather than building for the future. Clearing a frontcourt logjam that has killed spacing and submarined the offense might be done most effectively by dealing a superfluous player for a draft pick. But in Hennigan’s fifth year, he could be feeling pressure to make his first playoff appearance.