The Miami Heat showed up to Madison Square Garden for Game 4 yesterday and, while they have plenty of fucks to give, they must have left them in their other jeans, because for three quarters the Heat played like they had none to give away. None fucks. And so the result was a 89-87 loss to the New York Knicks who were playing with a guy with one hand, another guy with no knees, and a team that hadn't won a playoff game in 4,024 days.
Of course the big talking-point of the game was the final play in which the ball was in-bounded to Dwyane Wade who then ran around in circles and then took a ridiculous desperation shot that fell short, all the while the Heat had a perfectly good Cobradick standing in the corner doing nothing. Hooray narratives!
Carmelo Anthony finished the day with 41 points with Ama're the Fire Extinguisher Puncher finished with 20. LeBron James finished with 27 points, while D-Wade dropped 22 and Chris Bosh 17. All three had solid numbers in the end, but the Heat's overall "whateverthefuck" approach -- which featured unforced turnovers and bad shots -- forced them to try and play catch-up down the stretch.
Both James and Wade were pretty spectacular as the game wound down, and both made great plays to bring the Heat within two. None more than LeBron's and-1 that brought the Heat to within two, and had every New Yorker's balls ascended back into their bodies.
But with six seconds remaining, and a chance to tie or win the game, Miami inbounded to Wade who drove to the basket, lost the handle, and was forced to dribble out beyond the three point arc where he heaved a shot up that lost the game. A monumental fuck up by Wade, and a play that has everyone screaming loud noises about how James should've had the last shot, or at least been involved in the play somehow.
But that was just one of a few problems the Heat had in closing out this series.
The main problem -- and one that is being overlooked this morning because apparently only the final 0.000000001 seconds of a basketball game is what matters -- is that Erik Spoelstra inexplicably decided that Shane Battier was the Human Torch and called him to defend Anthony all by his lonesome for the majority of the game. FLAME ON!
Here's what we know. When Battier guards Anthony on his own, Melo is shooting over 50 percent from the floor, driving to the basket, drawing contact and turning Shane into a giant heap of charred USDA Battier beef. With LeBron on him -- including the regular season and these playoffs -- Melo is just a pile of raccoon shit. Anthony is 12-for-41 in this series when James is guarding him -- that's 29 percent. And that's the reason Miami has been so dominant in this series. And yet, Spo called for Battier to guard Melo throughout the entirety of the game, and in crunch time as well. Hence, Carmelo Anthony beat the Heat pretty much by himself.
The one time LeBron was on Melo, the Heat called for a double-team on Anthony. Anthony found a wide-open Zombie Mike Bibby in the corner who drained a dagger three-pointer.
Losing this game was more than just not calling LeBron's number for the final last-second play. It was lost by not calling LeBron's number to guard the one guy on the Knicks that should be the Heat's only concern.
It's no biggie. The Heat should be able to close this thing out Wednesday night at home. It's just that now we have to endure insufferable Knicks fans belch out nonsense like this dickweed for two and a half days. And that's just a pain in the asshole. Nice going, Spo!
*punches fire extinguisher*
The Heat will look to close out the series on Wednesday night at the American Airlines Arena but ZOMG ALL THE PRESSURE IS ON THEM BECAUSE OF REASONS! *fart* Tipoff is at 7 p.m.
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.