We cool now, Heat fans? LeBron and Wade came into the Staples Center last night, dropped their shorts and proceeded to Danza-slap every Lakers player, coach and fan in attendance with a 99-90 victory that was ALL D-Wade and Cobradick.
The Heat were the real stars in attendance despite the presence of Jack, Floyd Mayweather, Mark Wahlberg and roughly 15,836 wannabe actors and actresses taking coke bumps in between TV timeouts.
It may have been Dwyane Wade's 31st birthday but it might as well have been his 21st. D-Wade -- forever beloved in our hearts like he's some kinda primo hermano -- dropped 27 points on a night where he was vintage Wade: attacking the basket, scrambling for loose balls, cutting through open lanes in the Lakers defense and shutting down Kobe Bryant (who, despite a late fourth quarter flourish, had a relatively harmless 22 points on 8-of-25 shooting). MV3 was fun to watch and put to rest any notions (once again and hopefully folks will fucking LEARN this time) that he's lost a step or is not the same Dwyane Wade. D-Wade can fall out of bed, drop 25 points, impregnate 15 Kate Uptons, figure out gun control in a way that makes everyone happy and personally witness the birth of stars light years away like he's fucking Silver Surfer. Never doubt D-Wade again.
However, for all of Wade's badassery play, the night belong to one LeBron Raymone COBRADICK James, Esq. LeBron set the tone early, scoring half of his point total by the end of the first half and being all over the place as the Lakers turned the ball over 10 times in the first two quarters. Things were relatively quiet in the 2nd half for LeBron until FOURTH QUARTER ASSKCIKING TIME came along and LeBron went toe-to-toe with the NBA's most insidious ballhog, Kobe Bryant. Despite Kobe's early struggles, he hit a few big shots at the end to tie the game at 90. However, the Cobradick would not be denied on this night as James hit a bank shot with :49 seconds left to seal the game. LeBron was then fouled on a final, FUCK YOU drive to the basket with the game firmly within our grasp and then completed the classic 3-point play to get the Heat to 99. This was a huge win for a Heat team that had struggled on this long road trip (finishing 3-3) and for the first win at the Staples Center since 2010.
Also refreshing? The Heat were tenacious on defense and did a surprisingly not-shitty job crashing the boards. Miami was active and quick on defense, showing championship-caliber abilities to rotate quickly and efficiently whilst making quick work of turnovers in transition. The Lakers had 20 turnovers to the Heat's 6 and the 42-36 rebound disparity between the two teams was actually admirable considering the Lakers employ a whining 7-foot-tall freak at center as well as a fucking MUTANT CONDOR FACE. The lesson: when there are fucks to give and the lights are on and the world is watching, the Heat can actually play some good defense.
A few more notes:
- Gotta give some props to Ray Allen whose clutch 7 points with about 5 minutes left (out of his 9 total for the night) were crucial down the stretch. Allen's been a bit off lately and hopefully this is what we can expect from him as the season wears on into the playoffs.
- Dwight Howard finished with 13 points and 16 rebounds. Not exactly monster numbers and the Heat's use of 'small ball' strategy down the stretch forced Gasol and Howard to guard guys like Ray Allen and Shane Battier at times, which was a total mismatch because they are hideous tree people who are very slow, you see.
- Speaking of which, Spo gets a lot of criticism for this team and very little credit but that was a great strategy at the end. It forced the Lakers' big men to move around and put Howard on the foul line down the stretch.
- Is Shane Battier broken? Dear Shane Battier three-pointer, please come back soon.
- The Lakers have PROBLEMS. If this had been the Heat in the 2010 season, Bill Simmons' face would have melted off in glee and there would be a separate ESPN channel just to speculate/hate/talk shit ad nauseum about the Heat. Fuck the Lakers.
- Everyone see that Chris Bosh frustration after LeBron snagged a rebound from him at the end of the game? Fuck was that all about?
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The Heat now get a few days off and will finally return home to play the Raptors on Wednesday night. Can they bring their mascot with them?