1) It is WEDNESDAY, JUNE 19. I thought Uncle Fester I mean Joey Crawford (both pictured) did a fair job as referee last night. 2) Thanks to Tony Kornheiser for having us on to talk Heat today. 3) Bengals on Hard Knocks is further proof that series is struggling for teams to participate. People in Cincinnati are barely interested in the Bengals. 4) In The Previous Blogpost (ITPB): Heat G5 loss, Faith Healers, NCAA/UM mess, Miguel Olivo, Sad-O-Meter.
Blog held hostage: Almost, folks. We've been mighty Heat-intensive as you'd expect throughout this playoff run, with no apologies. But right after the championship parade as soon as this thing ends, one way or the other, we'll be back to more of a smorgasbord format. Patience.
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My column off the game: Click on Survival for the full column, which did not make all Broward editions of the print edition because of deadline. Simply one of the great, big nights in Miami sports history.
FINALS G6: HEAT 103, SPURS 100 (OT): LEBRON'S 32, LATE HEROICS SAVE MIAMI: Wow, wow, wow, wow, WOW! NO matter how long I've been doing this, some things still amaze me. Miami trailed by 10 entering the fourth quarter. Everything was slipping. The NBA discreetly was readying the postgame championship ceremony for San Antonio. And then? LeBron James. He took over. Scored 18 from the fourth quarter on, ended with a triple double and saved Miami's repeat-championship hopes, saved the notion of a dynasty -- saved everything. Now all they have to do is do it all over again Thursday. "Best two words in team sports," said coach Erik Spoelstra. "Game 7." Those are the two best words from Miami's vantage right now. For the dejected Spurs, not so much. Link to my column off the game is just above. ..... Original post: 1) Heat must use the crowd for a high-energy fast start. Dwyane Wade has lamented how Miami tends to start off slow; he's right. 2) A great and efficient game from LeBron James. He shot 56.5% during the season but it's 43.6% in the Finals. And if you take away his superb Game 4 it's 38.1%. Miami needs LeBron back to his normal (dominant) self. 3) Wade and Bosh must continue to complete a big Big 3 as they've down lately. 4) Better point-guard play. Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole are slumping simultaneously. Stop that! 5) Back to Birdman! Whether Mike Miller starts again or they go back to Udonis Haslem is not as important, to me, as significant doses of Chris Andersen off the bench. Miami remains a betting favorite (see below), even though only three previous times since the 2-3-2 Finals format began in 1985 has a team trailed 3-2 and won two straight at home as Miami must now do. Those were the 1988 Lakers, 1994 Rockets and 2010 Lakers.
WILL THE HEAT DO IT?: Yeah I know, this is another poll predisposed to be Miami-friendly given its place in a MiamiHerald.com blog. But we also know from experience that about half of all votes in our polls come from outside of Florida and that the last time we did a Heat-Spurs poll a huge number rolled in from Texas. Besides, our readers have always been pretty good about voting what they really think more than what they hope. You are challenged again. Will the Heat win two in a row and a repeat championship? Vote now and say why.
Heat still a betting favorite for crown: Despite trailing 3-2 in the Finals Miami still is a 4-5 betting favorite via Bovada, with San Antonio at 21-20. MVP odds entering Game 6 are LeBron James 4-5, Danny Green 2-1, Tony Parker 5-1, Tim Duncan 10-1 and Dwyane Wade 15-1.
CRAIG SAGER BOBBLEHEADS: The minor-league Fort Myers Miracle are planning a Craig Sager Bobblehead Night on June 29, with a scheduled appearance by the sartorially ghastly broadcaster himself. This is a blog. Could I say it if it weren't true?
SAD-O-METER BACK IN HIBERNATION: Marlins have won two in a row -- see, Heat, it isn't that hard! -- and six of past 10 to vault to a .319 winning percentage. The Sad-O-Meter will return if and when the Marlins fall back below 300.
Click back. Will be updating/adding much to this latest blogpost...