Miami nightlife can be distracting to visiting NBA teamsPosted by Inside Hoops
Games 3, 4 and 5 of the NBA Finals will be played at American Airlines Arena in Miami, a town that lures visitors to its nightlife.
During the 2006 Finals between Dallas and Miami, Mavericks coach Avery Johnson ordered his players to switch hotels after the Heat won Games 3 and 4 to tie the series.
Johnson said his players had developed a “vacation mentality” and moved them 25 miles north to Fort Lauderdale, away from family and friends who had been sharing the previous hotel. Miami went on to win four straight and claim the series 4-2.
In last year’s Finals against the Heat, which the Mavs won 4-2, Dallas players and coaches were booked into one hotel while family and friends stayed in neighboring hotels.
Asked if he was concerned about his players engaging in the Miami nightlife, Thunder coach Scott Brooks deadpanned, “What about the coaches?” before playfully revealing his wife was on the trip.
“I’ve never had any issues with our guys playing on the road,” Brooks said, not kidding. “They’ve always been focused. Miami is a great city, there’s no question. It’s a great environment, but we’re here to play basketball. There’s only 10 days, two weeks left of the season, then there’s plenty of time to vacation.”
– Reported by John Rohde of the Oklahoman