#### UPDATE ####
—So, I'm all set to go cover Heat practice after a nine-hour flight and a long wait in customs and an even longer bus ride. I get on the elevator heading down to the lobby in this hotel in Rio ON THE BEACH and the lift stops at the third floor.
The doors open and there's Heat coach Erik Spoelstra and his top assistant, David Fizdale, and they're both staring at me ... and not getting on the elevator. Spoelstra then smiles one of his Spo smiles, and the doors close. I get off at the lobby prepared to board the bus for another ride...and that's when I figured out what that Spo smile meant.
The Heat canceled practice today.
FROM EARLIER TODAY
For the first time in over four years, the Heat is on the outside staring into the LeBron fishbowl, and that reality is going to set in here in Rio de Janeiro over the next three days.
In the meantime, Chris Bosh says he's just happy to be here.
“I’m looking forward to having a great time,” Bosh said. “I’ve never been. I think this is a chance for us to soak in another culture and take a nice trip in the NBA, so this is always a good opportunity to see the world. If it wasn’t for basketball, I wouldn’t have gone to 100 percent of the places that I’ve been to, so I’m very excited and looking forward to meeting to some Brazilians.”
Such an ambassador, that Christopher Wesson Bosh.
So ... this Rio place is pretty exciting, and I can't wait to experience it (or experience as much of it as the NBA security apparatus will allow. We had some kind of serious police/military/commando escort from the airport to the hotel, which is across the street from the beach.)
My first bit of Rio exploration invovled me trying a Coca-Cola. I just had to do. Coke! ... In Rio! ... And it tastes like Coke!
Next on the agenda is Heat practice from 2-4 p.m. local time. (Rio is an hour ahead of Miami.) I'll update the blog accordingly, and in the meantime drink more Coke to stay awake.