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Sounds Like Fightin' Words

First off, we apologize for the technical problems with the blog the past few days. We're doing some renovations and should have the tweaks worked out in short order.

But on to the matters that really matter.

Count me among those who thought it was lame for some Heat players and coaches to complain that Josh Dunks Josh Smith was trying to embarrass Miami with his botched, between-the-legs dunk attempt in the final minutes of the Hawks Game 5 victory.

If anyone should be embarrassed, it should be Smith for being a knucklehead and missing the dunk.

If anyone else should be embarrassed, it should be the Heat for giving up on the play and allowing Smith to measure his steps starting at halfcourt to set up the attempt.

The Heat should be embarrassed for not getting back on defense to prevent the attempted highlight.

It should be embarrassed for having no one even bother to get back to prevent Joe Johnson from snagging the offensive rebound after Smith embarrassed himself.

It should be embarrassed for allowing Johnson to show his teammate how it's done the respectful way a few possessions later, when he got his own breakaway dunk, with no Heat player within 10 feet of him as he swooped in for a traditional dunk.

The bottom line is that Smith has been dunking on the Heat all series. Yes, that final dunk had a Ricky Davis-ish sort of quality to it, when it comes to classless showboating.

That said, I have no problem with a player going for the exclamation point to a pivotal victory in front of his own fans. If you've got those kind of hops, you use them.

Jamario Moon would have gone showtime in the same situation if the Heat were at home. So would Michael Beasley or even Dwyane Wade - to an extent.

So would it have been less offensive had Smith settled for simply a windmill 360?

As Udonis Haslem put it Thursday: "We should be embarrassed by a lot that happened before that."

Now, on to more important stuff (You get a bonus blog since I haven't posted in a while).

With his team facing playoff elimination heading into Game 6 Friday against Atlanta, Dwyane Wade came out a day early, firing on all cylinders.

He didn't discriminate in his attempt to motivate. He was in rare interview form. It was part comedy, part anger, part resentment, part praise, part desperation. But it as all designed to get his team in the right mindset if it plans to extend its playoff life.

It was also designed to ruffle a few feathers in Hawks-ville.

So here's Wade, unplugged, from Thursday's media session. Wade Headhurt

(On Hawks radio broadcaster Steve Holman, who berated Wade throughout Wednesday's broadcast and referred to the Heat as a bunch of "street thugs") WADE: "Us? That's why he don't work in Miami. That's why he works in Atlanta - to make them feel good."

(On Jamaal "Big Cat" Magloire stepping in to defend Wade after the hard foul from Solomon Jones) WADE: "That's Big Cat. I know if I go down to the beach and eat right now, and somebody comes to mess with me, Big Cat is going to come out of nowhere. I loved him from Day 1 when we signed him. He's been that force we needed."

(On how he's dealing with soreness in his head, back and shoulder) WADE: "I'm feeling better. I'm at the point where whatever is bothering me, it doesn't really matter at this point. I'm moving on from my injuries."

Mario West (On Hawks guard Mario West celebrating after he forced Wade to miss a shot at the halftime buzzer) WADE: "His celebration for his one stop? What is this game coming to? One thing I go back to is something my high school coach always told me. Act like you've done something before. He used to hate when I used to dunk and pound my chest all the time. Win lose or draw, you have to be classy. There are some unprofessional things that (the Hawks) have to take care of. On the court, you show emotion, and that's great. But celebrating after one stop? That's funny."

(More on Hawks guard Mario West, because Wade was on a roll) WADE: "I don't know what it was a sign of. I was laughing after the fact because I've never seen that before. Tony Allen did that the other night when he stopped Ben Gordon from hitting a shot to win the game. That's what you do. But we're not here to point out every little thing they do. Who cares?"

(On his flagrant foul on Mo Evans in Game 5 that was rescinded by the league Thursday) WADE: "If anybody knows basketball and looks at the play, they'll know I didn't even come close to trying to hurt him. I'm not that guy. I'll take a hard foul. But that one, I went straight for the ball. At that time in the game, in one instant, I'm not understanding why they called it. But looking back, I can see why they called it because they thought the game was getting out of hand. But (Atlanta) got two free throws and the ball for something that didn't happen. That hurt our momentum."

(On the officiating and series becoming a physical slugfest) WADE: "Each game has been different. Some games, they let you go, they let you fight. Some games, if you breathe on a guy, it's a foul. We have to go in and play and don't worry about what the call is going to be."

(On calling out rookies Michael Beasley and Mario Chalmers - or not) WADE: "Tomorrow is going to   show a lot - to see if our guys really feel it. If it seems like I'm calling them out, I'm not calling them out. Mike and Mario  But I want to see our young guys play like it's Game 6 of the playoffs. If Rio (Chalmers) says he won a national championship (at Kansas), well, I want to see him play like it. I want to see Michael (No. 2 overall draft pick), play like it. It's not about making shots. It's about your intensity, your focus."

(On his approach to an elimination game. Should he come out swinging or defer early?) WADE: "It's a tough position to be in. I don't want to come out and shoot my team out of it or shoot us into it. I want it to be a total team effort. I'm not the kind of guy that feels like I have to do everything. Success comes from team success. Hopefully, we can go out and play our normal game."

(On things getting testy between the teams) WADE: "It was one of those games, one of those playoff series. It's just about, do we have the team to come back and fight as much as (Atlanta's) going to fight? Zaza Pachulia is knocking people out. It's as simple as that. ZaZa I'm not telling my teammates to knock him out. But when he comes down the paint, just make sure he feels us. We're not a team that's playing dirty. We're the team that wants to play smarter and protect ourselves as well."

(And one more good dig at Mario West, just for good measure) WADE: "First off, I have nothing simmering with Mario. He's not been a factor in the series. (He's) irrelevant to me. I have nothing brewing with him at all."

(For live news, notes and updates on the Heat, follow me on Twitter @ twitter.com/wallacesports)

Comments

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Haslem needs to finally step up!!!!!!

How many offensive rebounds has he given up this series? It has to be a record.
I know he's the media's best friend but someone needs to call him out for getting punked by a guy named Zaza. All the heat rely on him to do is defend and rebound and in our losses he's failed miserably n doing so.

The problem with the Smith dunk attempt is just simply says to opposition that you guys stink and I(Smith) will showboat to show you. If he had done that during the 80's the very next game on a drive to basket he would be getting up off the floor..

What a bunch of cry-babies. Just play better.

Agree with lefty; the Heat are a bunch of sore-loosers, cry-babies. Starting with their coach and Wade....Grow up!!!

What an incredible amount of insults to Mario West. Wade, would you have done any different if you had forced Joe Johnson into that shot? Simply put, Mario West plays harder than anyone on either team and he doesn't deserve that kind of disrespect for doing his job and being excited about it.

- I have no problems with Atlanta showboating. If it was on our home court and one of our players dunked that ball, the whole crowd would go crazy.

- We were somewhat thuggish out there. It was a bit embarassing. Props to Atlanta for not turning this into a UFC match.

- Lefty, long time no see.

- We still have a shot. Go Heat.

Wade take that hot azz coat off, go smoke a L with Chalmers and B Beazy. Shaq got u that title now he talks twisted about you at every turn. CAN U digg itttttt???

Lol Atlanta fans really know basketball lmao.. Shaq got Wade a title hahaha. What a clueless bunch of clowns.

Talking shit about the player that put up the greatest finals performance in history what a joke (http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/playoffs2008/columns/story?columnist=hollinger_john&page=FinalsPerformances-1).
But everyone knows atlanta is one of the dumbest cities going.

Marvin Williams is the only Hawk who will take it to the hoop looking to get fouled. He isn't even playing. ZaZa got O'neil one time. He is just tough and clumsy. O'neil took the premeditated shot. Do you think the Hawks are supposed to give up rebounds without fighting for them? Get real.

Rondo plays rougher than any player on both these teams. The Hawks are not anywhere close to being the most physical team out there.

Josh is 23, a rookie if he had went to school. Could he have made that dunk? Yep. Did he? nope So who cares. Miami saved a possession. Key word his name on U-Tube if you doubt his dunking ability. The best way to keep him from trying such a thing is keep the game close.

We got two young teams that rely on the jumper to much. The Hawks will win unless Wade is hot and the rest of the team rebounds better. At 8:00 we'll find out who wants it more.

Wade would not have done what Mario West does. He is one of the classest players in the league unlike his counterparts Lebron James and Kobe Bryant. Miami did nothing wrong and now I feel that the classless of Atlanta is right there with Detriot.

By the way, to be fair, I do think miami's defense was terrible to say the least. That's where we need to focus in order to win games.

I agree Wade has to be hot in order for miami to win. He has to drop at least 35 tonight or were in trouble.

well it was totally classless for atlanta to try to show miami out like that. wow they need to grow up and get some class, that miss is what happens when you try too hard to show off, its bad sportsman ship, im not a sore loser beacuse both the Heat and Hawks played an awsome game, i just think its funny how people say that west is a better player than wade, beacuse wade is the possible mvp, plus he also scored the most points of everyone in the whole game, not just on miami, and shaq didnt get wade the championship, the whold team took it, the wade o'neal thing were the dynamic duo, they worked together, and also Miami still has a chance, i give respect to both teams, no hard feelings on atlanta, there were none intended, but i think that the hawks really need to work on their attitudes and maturity, as the heat need to work on their first half defense, wade wasnt being a bad sport, he was just telling it like it is, like always, so no one should come down on him for that, and ill end in saying that miami played hard, big ups to them, but altlanta played harder in the first half, and they did a good job, but i dont give up on my team, and if this doesnt work out well have next season, but i think that all teams in the nba as well as all players should show respect for one another beacuse they never know if the guy they are messin with or teasing would be their future side-kick in winning games

Haslem needs to step up. I laughed at that one.

When will you guys realize that this is simply a mediocre team that isn't going anywhere this year.

I love em and I hope they prove me wrong, but I'm realistic. They might get past ATL but if you think this roster will get past CLE, you guys are ill.

The Heat will not return to being a good team for another few years.

Im a Hawks fan. D-Wade is being unprofessional and unclassy. maybe he didnt see what we did last year when you think we are out of it or you start talking trash but i mean if thats the only way he can make himself feel good so be it. it comes down to who wins the series and who goes home

Unclassy is not a word....and last year? You definitely have to give the Hawks credit for taking the Celtics to 7 games but the wins were all at home. You're not a good team unless you can win on the road. That being said, the Hawks have obviously improved since last year but I wouldn't really call a team resilient, tough, or really great at bouncing back unless they can win on the road. I have to hand it to you Hawks fans, you're a rowdy bunch at home and def help your team get momentum, but that isn't the sign of true winners. True winners close teams out on the road and win series. We'll see who really has the heart of a winner tonight (and hopefully game 7 too).

ps...any other heat fans think we should wear our El Heat uniforms? Wade always has sick games when we wear our El Heat jerseys. I also kind of thought we might seeing how we were trying to do the whole "blackout" thing. Just would have made sense for the players to wear black, not just the fans.

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