Archive for the ‘ Miami Heat Blog ’ Category

Paul Pierce says Nets not scared of Heat

Here’s the New York Post reporting on the Heat and Nets, who are facing each other in the second round of the 2014 NBA playoffs. The Heat currently lead the series 2-1, but the Nets stepped up yesterday to win Game 3 in Brooklyn yesterday.

The Nets made their stand last night against LeBron James, and Brooklyn showed up to stand with them.

When you are The King of your sport, you live for these occasions, when the opponent is reeling and desperate and you have the chance to go for the throat and choke the last vestiges of life out of it.

Once you become The King, every game becomes a Game of Thrones, every series a Series of Thrones.

Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce, remember, came to Brooklyn to threaten The Kingdom, and with a lot of luck and Mikhail Prokhorov maybe installing a Fountain of Youth somewhere inside Barclays Center, to dream the improbable dream of shocking the world and somehow wresting the crown from The King.

That dream stayed alive Saturday night when Brooklyn, a 104-90 winner, played with a toughness and an edge and a pride that reflects Mike Tyson’s borough and refused to let King James grab a 3-0 series lead and bury it.

“We’re not scared of them,” Pierce said.

Enjoy these video highlights of LeBron James helping the Miami Heat take a 2-0 series lead against the Brooklyn Nets in their second round NBA playoff series:

The Heat are up 2-0 against the Nets in their second round NBA playoff series. Here’s the Miami Herald on a couple of Heat players who so far in the playoffs have a good view from their seats on the bench. Which isn’t surprising, considering the Heat rotation players already have championship rings from their previous playoff efforts:

michael beasley

In crafting its roster last summer, the Heat hoped Greg Oden and Michael Beasley would provide an extra boost in its title defense.

Turns out, neither has been needed so far in the early stages of the playoffs.

Not only are both out of the rotation, but one is usually relegated to the Heat’s inactive list, alongside rookie Justin Hamilton.

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra kept Beasley active ahead of Oden in the first and second games of this series because the Nets “are a very perimeter-oriented team.”

With the Nets playing a lot of smaller lineups, this series is not the ideal matchup for Oden, who played 212 minutes in 23 games this season, including six starts, and averaged 2.9 points and 2.3 rebounds.

Oden, who hasn’t appeared in a Heat playoff game, might earn minutes in an Eastern Conference finals matchup against Indiana’s Roy Hibbert or Washington’s Marcin Gortat, though he likely would play behind Udonis Haslem if he plays at all.

Here’s the New York Daily News reporting on the Heat and Nets, who are facing each other in the Eastern conference semifinals:

lebron james

This is what it’s supposed to look like when the two-time defending champ plays the sixth seed.

It’s supposed to be lopsided, with the favorites imposing their will and their athletic advantage, scoring easily and often under the basket.

Only it wasn’t supposed to happen to the Nets, not after they beat the Heat in all four regular-season meetings.

“Regular seasons don’t even matter,” Miami’s Dwyane Wade said.

Like the Heat was preaching all along, the playoffs are a different animal. It became painfully apparent for the Nets on Tuesday night at American Airlines Arena, where they were stomped by a balanced Miami attack and fell in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.

It was just too easy for LeBron James and Co. in their 107-86 domination. They outscored the Nets in the paint, 52-28. They shot 57%, breaking open the game in the third quarter before Jason Kidd waved the white flag.

Here’s the South Florida Sun Sentinel reporting on the Nets and Heat:

The droning chant will have to wait until the series moves to Barclays Center for Saturday’s Game 3.

But an argument could be made it has been ringing in the Miami Heat’s ears for months.

“Brooookl-lyn! Brooook-lyn! Brooook-lyn!”

An early-round matchup the Heat thought they had avoided with their No. 2 East playoff seed, until some late manipulation by the Brooklyn Nets, is at hand, the best-of-seven conference semifinal series starting Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena.

No team this season, at least when it came to wins and losses, had the Heat’s number like Brooklyn, sweeping the four-game season series, as well as winning both preseason matchups.

And, yes, it means Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce are back as playoff rivals, this time in Brooklyn black instead of Boston green, complete with the enduring playoff respect and contempt that long has heightened these postseason matchups against LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.

“It will always be there,” Wade said after Sunday’s practice, a session completed before the Nets defeated the Raptors 104-103 at Air Canada Centre in Game 7 of that series. “I don’t think there will be a moment where it won’t, just the competitive nature of those guys.”

Sunday in Miami, the Heat beat the Charlotte Bobcats 99-88 in Game 1 of their first round NBA playoff series. But the Bobcats did enjoy a highlight coming in the form of a great Josh McRoberts dunk on Chris “Birdman” Andersen. Enjoy the video clip:

Here’s the South Florida Sun Sentinel reporting on the Heat:

Mike Beasley inactive for Heat in playoff opener

Michael Beasley was designated as inactive for the Miami Heat’s playoff opener Sunday against the Charlotte Bobcats at AmericanAirlines Arena.

Beasley sprained an ankle during Wednesday’s regular-season finale against the Philadelphia 76ers. Coach Erik Spoelstra said Beasley got in a workout Sunday and is closer to a return.

“Michael is still getting healthy from that ankle,” Spoelstra said. “He didn’t really progress the last couple of days the way that we had hoped. He was able to get a better workout today than he was the last couple of days.”

Here’s ESPN Miami reporting on the Heat, who begin their first round playoff series against the Charlotte Bobcats on Sunday:

Having finished 54-28, the Heat endured their lowest winning percentage of any season since James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh came together in 2010. They’ve survived a seven-month grind during which nagging injuries forced Wade out of the lineup for 28 games and coach Erik Spoelstra to sort through 21 different starting lineups to fill the voids.

Now, the two-time defending champions enter the playoffs older — six of their top nine players are in their 30s — and arguably more vulnerable than they’ve been at any point. In addition to those factors, Miami limped into the postseason having lost 14 of their final 25 regular-season games and failed to secure home-court advantage throughout the playoffs, which proved to be essential last season.

Yet as defiant as they’ve ever been, the Heat insist none of those potential warning signs matter.

“On the outside, there’s more doubt,” said forward Udonis Haslem, who along with Wade are the lone players who have been with the Heat since their first championship season in 2006. “Within here, we’re still confident in one another. We still know what we can do. We still understand what needs to be done and we know how to get it done. From the outside looking in, people might have a different opinion.”

Watch video of Nets rookie Mason Plumlee blocking Heat star LeBron James with around four seconds left. The Nets won the game, 88-87. This was huge. LeBron felt he got fouled on the play. Notice Joe Johnson swiping at LeBron before Plumlee’s block.

Here’s the Miami Herald reporting on some Heat legends:

Tim Hardaway happy for Alonzo Mourning despite Hall of Fame snub

Odds are Tim Hardaway is going to get into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame sooner rather than later.

But there’s no doubt the five-time All-Star point guard — now a 47-year-old scout with the Heat — is disappointed he’s not joining the Hall in Springfield, Mass., this August alongside his former teammate Alonzo Mourning.

“I can’t really tell you my initial feelings,” Hardaway said of the Hall of Fame selection process before Tuesday night’s game against the Nets. “But I’m glad Zo got the call and he’s going in. I’m going to be there for him.

“We should have went in together,” Hardaway continued. “But you know, what can I say? I don’t have any control over that. That’s the way it is. “

Hardaway, whose No. 10 is the only other Heat jersey retired and hung up alongside Mourning’s No. 33 inside AmericanAirlines Arena, was joined at the hip with the 6-10, seven-time All-Star center in 1996 by Pat Riley.

Watch some video highlights from the career of former NBA center Alonzo Mourning, who will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame

Here’s the Miami Herald reporting on retired NBA center Alonzo Mourning, who will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame this August:

Alonzo Mourning humbled to make Hall of Fame

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame made official Monday what has been known for days: Alonzo Mourning will be among those inducted in the 2014 class, in a ceremony scheduled for August in Springfield, Mass.

Mourning becomes the second Heat player to be inducted into the Hall, joining Gary Payton.

“I’m humbled and I’m truly honored,” Mourning said. “I’m very, very grateful. … If my life ended today, I’ve lived a storybook life.”

Mourning credited his family, Heat president Pat Riley and former Georgetown coach John Thompson, “who helped contribute so much to my life, not just as an athlete, but as a person. Big John taught me more about life than he did about basketball.”

Mourning said it “would only be fitting” if two people – presumably Riley and Thompson – are part of presenting him during his induction, adding it would be difficult to pick one over the other.

Here’s ESPN.com reporting on the Miami Heat, who for now still have a championship-contending roster:

Miami Heat teammates Dwyane Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh all have opt-outs in their contracts at the end of this season, but no collective decision has been made as to whether they will all choose to test the free agent waters.

The three met before they made their free agent decision in 2010 and could have another such meeting before their June 30 opt-out deadlines, which allows them to leave in 2014, 2015 or 2016.

Wade revealed on Tuesday as part of an interview for the cover story of an upcoming issue of ESPN The Magazine that the three, who have gone to three straight Finals and won the last two, plan to have that conversation at some point.

“I’m at a position where I don’t really have to worry about it,” said Wade, who also won a title for the Heat in 2006. “I’ve been with the same organization for now 11 years. We’ve won multiple championships, so it’s no reason where I need to think about that yet. I’m not at a point where we are a bad team and I need to think about the future so right now I’m really focused on just enjoying this team, enjoying our quest to try to ‘Three-peat.’ And when the season is over, and whatever happens, then I will sit down and I will sit down with Chris and I will sit down with Bron and I will sit down and make the best decision for myself and my family.”

The Miami Heat were in Milwaukee Saturday to play the Bucks. Before the game, LeBron James met a girl named Ebony Nettles-Bey who loves and plays basketball and is battling cancer:

Friday in Detroit, the Heat beat the Pistons 110-78. LeBron James had 17 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists in the win. Here are some LeBron video highlights:

The Pacers edged the Heat 84-83 on Wednesday. Both LeBron James and Paul George put up big games for their squads. Here are some video highlights:

Mike Miller, now with the Memphis Grizzlies, received his 2013 Heat championship ring in Miami Friday. Video highlights:

Here’s ESPN Miami reporting on the Heat and one of their former sharpshooters, Mike Miller:

Mike Miller, Heat prepare for Miami reunion

Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade can’t figure out which of the two he misses more about former teammate Mike Miller. For at least one night, though, Wade is certain he doesn’t want to experience either Miller’s laugh or shot much on Friday.

That’s when Miller, unsung hero of the past two NBA Finals for the Heat, returns with the Memphis Grizzlies to face his former team at AmericanAirlines Arena. It’s Miller’s first appearance back in Miami since the Heat waived him with the league’s amnesty clause in a shrewd financial move last summer that still has his former teammates unhappy with the team’s decision.

But the organization hopes to leave any hard feelings in the past Friday, and will use the occasion to present Miller his 2013 championship ring and also honor him with a minute-long video tribute before the start of the Heat’s game against the Grizzlies.

“You have a connection, and it’s special from that standpoint,” Wade said of Miller, who was part of the Heat’s 2010 free-agency signing class highlighted by LeBron James and Chris Bosh. “He was my locker mate. Obviously, his unbelievable shooting ability is something that not many people have, but just his infectious laugh and how he was in the locker room, we miss that. But hopefully we don’t hear him laugh at all when we see him [Friday night].”

The Miami HEAT announced today that center Justin Hamilton will join the Sioux Falls Skyforce for their NBA Development League home games this Friday and Saturday against the Idaho Stampede. Following Saturday night’s game, he will re-join the HEAT in Miami for their contest against the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday night.

Hamilton, who was signed by the HEAT on March 14, appeared in 37 games (all starts) with the Skyforce earlier this season and averaged 19.3 points, 9.2 rebounds, 2.03 blocks, 1.5 assists and 35.8 minutes while shooting 49.1 percent from the field, 38.5 percent from three-point range and 81.2 percent from the foul line. The 2014 NBA D-League All-Star has not appeared in a game with Miami this season.

Watch video highlights of LeBron James scoring 43 points last night in a Miami Heat win over the Cleveland Cavaliers:

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