Tag: Thunder Heat Game 2

Video: Micro-Movie of Heat-Thunder NBA finals Game 2


NBA.com is doing a fantastic job with these — it’s not jut a highlight package, there are behind-the-scenes video, shots from off-day practices, really interesting stuff.

And it doesn’t take much to make these games interesting. This has been a blisteringly fun series. I can’t wait for Game 3.

NBA finals Game 2 draws biggest ratings since 2004

Miami Heat v Oklahoma City Thunder – Game Two

Through two games, this is shaping up to be an epic NBA finals.

And people are tuning in — for the second straight contest Game 2 drew the largest Game 2 audience since 2004. That is to say, the biggest ratings since the Shaq/Kobe Lakers.

Game 2 drew an overnight rating of 11.8 according to ESPN, which is up 12 percent compared to last year’s Game 2 (Miami vs. Dallas). Through two games the finals overnight ratings average this season is an 11.8, up 11 percent from last year.

Which just goes to show the NBA is a star-driven league — Miami is a midsized market and OKC is small (45th biggest television market in the nation), but the stars are big and drawing in viewers.

Game 2 drew a massive 44.4 rating in Oklahoma City, the biggest rating ever for an NBA game in that city. Miami drew an impressive 30.3.

The way both of these games have had dramatic finishes, Game 3 Sunday night in Miami could see even bigger numbers. If, really when, this series gets to Game 6 and 7 it could be the biggest ratings since the Jordan era.

Video: Coaches, Durant, Wade talk about dramatic Game 2

The Miami Heat's Dwyane Wade speaks afte
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What I enjoy most about Dwyane Wade’s post-game press conferences these playoffs is how the wrap on his finger always matches the color of his shirt. I’m not kidding. Does it every game.

Here is the video of Erik Spoelstra, Scott Brooks, Kevin Durant and Wade talking about Game 2, a 100-96 Miami win that evened the series at 1-1. After the game everyone asked from the Thunder dodged the question about the foul on Durant’s final shot attempt, with Brooks saying he wanted to focus on the first six minutes of the game, not one play at the end.

Video: Big plays from LeBron, Durant down stretch of Game 2

Miami Heat v Oklahoma City Thunder – Game Two
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We already showed you the controversial one, but LeBron James and Kevin Durant were involved in some other huge plays down the stretch that made Game 2 one wild and entertaining finish.

In his post game press conference Thunder coach Scott Brooks was almost just shaking his head at LeBron’s bank shot. Durant’s three was just clutch. Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Derek Fisher, just a whole lot of people were making big plays at the end of this game.

Two games in, it’s starting to feel like we might have a classic NBA finals on our hands. One where the Heat are going to have to win again in OKC to close it out.

NBA finals Game 2: Thunder must break the slow start habit

Miami Heat v Oklahoma City Thunder – Game Two

Oklahoma City was even or ahead of Miami for 36 minutes of Game 2. Seriously. The second quarter of Game 2 was tied, the Thunder and Heat each scored 28. The Thunder won the third quarter by a point and then owned the fourth quarter 29-22.

Miami only won one quarter, the first one.

But that start — Miami raced out to an 18-2 lead, led by 17 at one point and won the quarter by a dozen 27-15 — is what decided Game 2, a 100-96 Heat win that evened the series.

For the second game in a row this series the Thunder dug themselves a hole from the start, and this this time it was too deep to climb out of. They had chances, they faced some bad calls late, but they lost this game in the first 8 minutes.

And to a man the Thunder owned up to that afterward. They know that Miami has too much talent for them to expect to come from behind every game.

They know the consequences of this trend continuing.

“That was the game. We can’t start off down 18 to 2,” Kevin Durant said.

“When you get down 17 too many things have to happen well for you and perfect for you,” Thunder coach Scott Brooks said.

“We got off to a slow start, we can’t keep doing that,” James Harden said in a televised interview after the game. “It only can work sometimes where we can come back.”

Why is it happening?

“Good question, I don’t know,” Harden said after the game. “We’ve done a good job all postseason of having very good starts, especially at home, and these last couple games have been slow. But we’ll pick it up in Game 3.”

If you’re looking to assign blame for the start you’ll be pointing at Russell Westbook, who was 1-7 shooting and was not facilitating for teammates. Not that they were hitting shots either — as a team the Thunder shot 25 percent in the first quarter. But the problem was team-wide, not just Westbrook. The Thunder starting five has not been consistently impressive all post season.

The ball movement and off-the-ball player movement on the weak side seemed to disappear for the Thunder in Game 2. The Thunder’s defense was a step slow to start the game and couldn’t contain Dwyane Wade, who came out aggressive and started getting into the lane. Once Wade got going there was no stopping him.

There are some small adjustments Brooks and the Thunder can make — less Kendrick Perkins (who was awful at both ends of the floor) and more Serge Ibaka. They need to play better defense to help get stops, which allows them to get out and get some transition buckets early.

It’s really about energy. More than design it’s execution. It’s about knocking down shots — Westbrook just missed shots he usually hits. Kevin Durant was 1-for-3 in the first quarter. They all need to step up.

And they need to do it from the opening tip.