But of all the naysayers, no one is smashing the turbo-back button harder than ESPN and its analytics department, which apparently is having trouble making sense of the Heat.
Have you tried unplugging it and plugging it back in, ESPN?
ESPN’s BPI gives the Heat a 2.1% chance to win the finals pic.twitter.com/d3J8zMXsPP— NBACentral (@TheNBACentral) May 18, 2023
So You're Saying There's a ChanceAfter giving the Miami Heat a measly three-percent chance of defeating the Boston Celtics in the conference finals, one would think the ESPN data department would be scrambling to recalculate what a Game 1 victory has done for the Heat's chances.
Notwithstanding the Heat trouncing their rival on enemy turf, ESPN analytics is still projecting slim odds for the Heat, stating that the team has an insulting 2.6 percent chance of winning the NBA Championship — the whole thing.
Got it. Good talk. Offer declined.
A few Jimmy Butler statlines from the playoffs:— StatMuse (@statmuse) May 18, 2023
56 PTS | 9 REB | 2 AST | 1 BLK
42 PTS | 8 REB | 4 AST | 2 STL
35 PTS | 5 REB | 11 AST | 3 STL
35 PTS | 5 REB | 7 AST | 6 STL
27 PTS | 6 REB | 10 AST | 2 STL
Incalculable: Playoff JimmyIt seems that ESPN's prediction engine has at least one fatal flaw — it's impossible to quantify the feats Jimmy Butler can achieve when the playoffs arrive.
Whatever data points are being used to calculate the Heat's chances must take into account the fact that come crunch time, Butler turns into a scorned basketball demigod out for revenge. Butler has never won the big one — and it's clear his hunger for a championship ring brings out the beast in him.
The star made it to the NBA Finals in 2020 with the Heat, but they lost to the Lakers in six games. Having his goal so closely in sight only to drop the series undoubtedly fanned his competitive flame.
"Playoff Jimmy" is a ruthless, unpredictable force on the court. Put that in the algorithm and get back to us, ESPN.
“I’m sure the assalytics, assaholycs, or whatever they call themselves had us not beating Milwaukee in this first round.”— Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz (@LeBatardShow) May 16, 2023
- @ThisIsUD reacts to ESPN analytics giving them a 3% chance to beat the Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals. #HEATCulture
📺 https://t.co/YVOVpqoxnX pic.twitter.com/g1ZRgFnHSc
100 Percent Chance Haslem Doesn't CareRegardless of what the analytics say, you can count one person out of giving a shit: 20-year Heat vet Udonis Haslem. In an appearance on the Dan LeBatard Show prior to the series, the crew asked him what he thought about his team being given a 3 percent shot at taking down the Game 1, -8.5 point favored Celtics. His response? The most UD thing we've ever heard — take your "assalytics" and shove them up your "assaholics."
Game 2 Incoming
While ESPN continues to crunch numbers, the Miami Heat will focus on what truly matters: Trying to steal both road games before the team heads back to Miami for Games 3 and 4.
Game 2 takes place tonight, May 19, at the TD Bank Center in Boston, with the tip set for 7:30 p.m.
If the Heat manage to take a 2-0 lead in the series, expect another math revision by the "experts."