Well well well, that was quite a series was it not? First of all let me admit, I thought Chicago was going to win Thursday night. I predicted that Chicago would win because they have a soul and a heart – by the way, they do….but they just don’t have an MVP! But they’ve got a lot of soul and a lot of heart.
Did you watch the game Tuesday night as well though? Erick Spoelstra said afterwards “boy, he’s an MVP player” never mentioned his name. By the way, the last MVP player to win a title in the same year? 8 years ago, Tim Duncan – a complete player like Lebron. So congrats on the hardware, thank the writers who were oblivious to your flaws…but you’ll be watching the finals from your couch…it’ll be Dirk and Lebron.
How about this number, Derrick Rose – you’re not going to believe this! You’re going to think I made this up. Derrick Rose, when Lebron James guarded him in this series, shot 6.3%. Not 16%, not 26% – those would be egregious, he shot 6.3%. Well the good news is…he’s 22 years old, that should go up to 9 or 10% in a few years For 3½ quarters, Heat/Bulls went exactly as I planned. Then the last 5 minutes…my bad! I forgot to factor in “the withering Rose” equation.
It’s amazing what has happened – Miami couldn’t have played worse for 3 quarters. Dwayne Wade was atrocious for 3 ½ quarters!! But like all stars do, they rise to the occasion. But my first thought Thursday night, when the series was over A) I’m tired! Honestly can you start these games earlier? B) I don’t think Chicago is as close as everybody thinks. I don’t think Derrick Rose is going to get those titles everybody thinks – the one’s that Michael Jordan also predicted he’d get. Noah and Boozer sat in the 4th quarter. They don’t even have a #2 guy and their #1 is very inefficient!
Whereas Chris Bosh – the #3 guy for Miami, shot 60%, 50%, 65%, 50%, 48% – he shot 55% for the series. Scored 30, 34, 22, 20 and had good rebound numbers 7, 8, 11, 7 and he was an excellent defender. So Miami’s big 3 were far more consistent and efficient than Chicago’s #1! I honestly don’t think Chicago is close. They need a #2 but there is none out there and they’re going to be jammed up against the salary cap.
But what this series really was…is an education! It’s an education to players around the NBA, teams like the Knicks that realize “you better get help!” Melo and Amare are not winning you a title, you need another one. It’s an education to young NBA fans – you veteran guys, you guys over 40; you know what wins in the NBA – rebounding, defense. Young people think “T-Mac, Stevie Francis, Iverson, Rose” Jump, dunk….wins!” Naw, it’s the other end of the floor too. To the media it’s an education as well, the “finding Derrick Rose an excuse” machine…it’s done! No more excuses…watch the games! You have to play on both ends. Derrick can’t guard Bosh or Lebron and they’d never put him on D-Wade, Lebron can guard anybody…that’s value! It’s an education to D-Wade, who deep down has always known it…this is validation; this is Lebron’s team in crisis. And to every GM in the league…don’t sign average players to long contracts. Whereas Pat Riley signs Bosh, Lebron and D-Wade…he’s got all sorts of guys coming off the books. The Bulls don’t! They’re gonna have to double, triple or quadruple what they pay Derrick Rose, they’re stuck with Boozer, stuck with Deng, stuck with Noah…it’s an education.
More than anything, what this really came down to – is in the 4th quarter, you can’t put Derrick Rose on the 3 best players of the Heat. Liability is too strong of a word because he is super quick and makes things happen. But it’s really a disadvantage to put him on Lebron, D-Wade or Bosh. D-Wade is just too thick, but yet you can put Lebron on ANYBODY of the Bulls and stop them completely. Arguably, even their big – Joakim Noah.
Let me say this though about Derrick Rose – this isn’t like overnight hate or something, I called him out months ago. I researched him, did some numbers and said – for the record, you had me going on Derrick Rose. I said I thought Derrick Rose was closer to Allan Iverson than anybody I could remember and many of you said “keep it going, keep pushing it, your right! Don’t listen to the haters” Now we watch him – heck he is Allen Iverson, although a more humble kid. But Derrick Rose is a lot of things, he’s not efficient. ESPN has seemingly – and I’m not sure if they have created it, but I’ve never heard of it until like 6 months ago, the term “Volume scorer” what in God’s name is that?
That’s a new term we’re using to describe and validate Derrick Roses’ inefficiency. “yeah that Derrick Rose kid is a volume scorer” Oh, so he needs 28 shots to score 25 points – that’s funny, because Lebron only took 13 in Gm 3 and still crushed him, he took only 19 Thursday night and carried his team. A “volume scorer” that’s how we describe Derrick Rose now, to validate his inefficiency! Can you imagine? “Yeah I like my stock broker; he’s a volume stock broker. He’ll find you 3 great stocks – now, he’s got to buy and sell 40 or so to get there” or in the football context “I’ll tell yah, I love our QB he’s a volume QB…I mean, he’ll get you 3 TD’s now, you have to let him throw 74 times…about 38% completion rate, but he’ll get you 3 TD’s!” it’s ridiculous! “Volume scorer” is an inefficient player, that’s all it is.
Larry Bird wasn’t a volume scorer, Magic, Jordan, Lebron…they’re not volume scorers. You know who is a volume scorer? Allen Iverson…how many titles? That’s just a ridiculous thing we’ve made up. Derrick Rose will improve – no doubt, he is a humble kid. I’ll say it again though, you guys went into this series calling him “clutch” and knocking Lebron for a lack of that skill. But leadership is willingness to be hated! And we know Lebron is willing to be hated.
Once again, Derrick after the game “hey, my bad!” this my friends, is NOT leadership! “It is what it is, you run a play – they’re a good defensive team, if my teammates are open they will shoot the ball. They were playing tough defense but in the end, it’s on me…everything is on me! Turnovers…missed shots…fouls and you gotta learn from it, that’s all I can do right now because the series is over with…” It’s not on you Derrick…that’s the easy way out! That’s for guys who don’t want to lead and don’t want to deal with conflict.
Erick Spoelstra said something after the game – read carefully, but he talks about Lebron late in the game “There’s a history in this game of great players shining and those moments – when the game is in the balance and all 3 of those guys are special players, that’s why we recruited them so hard this summer. So they stepped up big when we needed them”
Okay, so now ask yourself “the one guy in the series, who didn’t – Derrick Rose, is he really really clutch? Or is he just a completely inefficient yet dynamic player that we make up terms for, to validate his talent?” Volume scorer…how would you like to be a volume comedian? There is one…it’s called Dane Cook, every 38th joke is funny…it’s not acceptable! That’s not an acceptable term…for a point guard? A point guard is a volume scorer? I am however marveled at the efficiency of Lebron James – forget the body, we know he’s better than Derrick Rose, everyone knows that – every GM would take Lebron over Derrick; the bigger body has always won in the playoffs!
Lebron James – believe it or not, is improving. He didn’t play this good of a defense years ago. He didn’t shoot like this years ago! Lebron – like Michael Jordan, Jordan wasn’t a great shooter in his first 5 years in the league, went to the tin too much, people were concerned that he’d get hurt. Michael developed into a brilliant mid-range shooter, so you are seeing the improvement of Lebron. Lebron said afterwards, I’m as proud of my defense as I am my offense “ I take pride defensively, its whatever it takes for myself and for our team, you know…if that means me playing minutes guarding Derrick Rose, then I’ll do it. I don’t have a problem with that…I play both sides of the floor. I love defense much more than I do offense”
it should be noted that valuable in the NBA playoffs is when there’s 5 minutes to go. Derrick Rose – in sortable “clutch” statistics is not one of the 75 best field goal percentage shooters in the NBA with 5 minutes to go. Just how valuable is that…when you consider that on the defensive end of the floor, he’s also to some degree a liability. Valuable is 5 minutes to go – being able to guard anybody, being as good of a distributor as you are a scorer as you are a defender.
Now, Lebron James’ ability to score 7 points and dominate a game –even Scottie Pippen, who was on Mike & Mike Friday morning on ESPN Radio, the way Lebron can score 7 points and completely control the game is amazing “Michael Jordan is probably the greatest scorer to ever play in the game, but I may go as far as to say Lebron James may be the greatest player to ever the game because he’s so potent offensively that not only can he score at will but he keeps everybody involved. You have to be on your p’s and q’s on defense because no guy on the basketball court is not a threat to score when Lebron James is out there, but not only that, but he’s also doing it on the defensive end…” Volume scorer!! Tell me anything in sports, where you’d be happy having as your star “a volume (blank)” I mean, a volume running back is the guy that averages 2.4 yards a carry! Yeah, he’ll get you 100 yards, but he needs 48 carries!