SAN ANTONIO — Much to the relief of the left side of LeBron James’ body, the air conditioning system at the AT&T Center that were out for Game 1 of the NBA Finals has been repaired.
Here is the official statement from Spurs Sports & Entertainment (which runs the building):
“The electrical failure that caused the AC system outage during Game 1 of the NBA Finals has been repaired. The AC system has been tested, is fully operational and will continue to be monitored. The upcoming events at the AT&T Center, including the Ramon Santos concert tonight (Friday), the Stars game on Saturday and Game 2 of the NBA Finals, will go on as scheduled. We apologize for the conditions in the arena during last night’s game.”
Nothing to see here, move along.
But Spurs coach Gregg Popovich was in a joking mode about it on Friday (which is easier to do after a win).
“I saw all the air conditioning workers in the hallway as I was leaving the building last night, so I sent them all home,” Popovich deadpanned.
The AC failed before Game 1 of the Finals and temperatures soared inside the AT&T Center to upwards of 90 degrees on the court, plus it was very humid. That caused LeBron James to cramp up (he barely played in the final 7:31 of the game) and other players on both teams to wilt. The Spurs, with their depth, withstood the conditions better and got a Game 1 win.
There is no blame here, as I sure all of you know from your own experience things break and usually at the worst possible time. They repaired it, and they get a couple of test runs in a full building before Game 2.
The NBA never seriously considered postponing or delaying the second half of Game 1 as the temperatures rose. First, there was no condensation on the court causing players to slip or risking injury, something NBA VP of Basketball Operations Rod Thorn said after the game. There was no real danger to players.
So they went ahead with the game, LeBron cramped, the Heat wilted and the Spurs exploded down the stretch to pick up a comfortable Game 1 win.
Who knows what happens in Game 2, but at least the arena should be more comfortable.