Tag: Gregg Popovich

2014 NBA Finals - Game Five

LeBron James with chase down, volleyball spike block on Patty Mills (VIDEO)


LeBron James and the Heat came out playing with the desperate energy they needed a couple of games before — he started out with 15 points on 5-6 shooting, including a couple of threes.

And this defensive chase down block into the third row on Patty Mills. That should earn LeBron a tryout for USA Volleyball.

Miami’s defensive energy was much better to start the game and that got them a lead all the way up to 14 in the first quarter. The question with them is if they can sustain the energy.

Ray Allen in starting lineup, Mario Chalmers to bench for Game 5

2014 NBA Finals - Game Four

As expected, Erik Spoelstra has gone to the Heat lineup that he started the second half of Game 4 with, a no point guard lineup.

Mario Chalmers has been benched and Ray Allen is starting for the Miami Heat.

Miami’s starting five is Allen, Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh and Rashard Lewis. That lineup has played 9 minutes together in this Finals (they shot just 25 percent, but that’s a small sample size).

No changes for the Spurs who start Tony Parker, Danny Green, Kawhi Leonard, Boris Diaw and Tim Duncan.

Erik Spoelstra looks for some way, anyway to get Heat to stamp “our identity” on Game 5

Erik Spoelstra

SAN ANTONIO — For the past 24 hours, when you’ve asked coach Erik Spoelstra or the Heat players what adjustments they need to make to bounce back from a 3-1 deficit against the Spurs, you get some variant of “we just need to do what we do better.” It’s not new lineups or new match ups — Game 5 Sunday night will be the 14th meeting between these teams since the start of last year’s Finals, these teams know each other.

It’s about execution and that’s what Erik Spoelstra said he has emphasized in the last 48 hours.

“We met yesterday and talked about our approach for the next 24 hours,” Spoelstra said before Game 5. “We had a good day of work the day before that. We had a good day off to clear our minds, and this is about bringing our best game of the series….

“We’re looking to start better, but regardless of what happens, we have to find a way in this game. And we need consistent minutes where we’re imposing our identity on this game, which we’ve yet to do for an entire game.”

Maybe that is because they are coming out of a soft Eastern Conference, where they didn’t have to play at their peak for 48 minutes to advance. Maybe it’s because this is Game 14 between these teams since the start of last year’s Finals and San Antonio has gotten used to the pressure and style of the Heat.

Whatever the reason, this is not the first adversity the Heat have faced and this gives Spoelstra confidence.

“I love being in the trenches with this group when you’re in situations like this,” Spoelstra said. “You reveal your character. You real what you’re made out of when you’re facing adversity. Everybody can bid in the situation that the Spurs are in right now. It’s much more revealing when you’re in a situation like this how you respond, individually or collectively. How do we respond in a game like this? I love bing in the locker room with these guys in these situations.”

We will see what the Heat locker room is like after this game. That also could be telling.