Sunday, June 18, 2006

Game 5 Momentum

Desire. Drive. Determination.

Tonight’s game doesn’t end the season or the series. But it gets the winner one game closer to the NBA title. Tonight’s game is not for the title itself. Tonight’s game is for “momentum.”

For the Heat, it means one last game at home in what has been the greatest season in franchise history. One more game in front of 20,000 rabid, white clad fans chanting, “Let’s Go Heat!” It means another opportunity to turn the screws on Dallas and apply the white hot pressure.

Just a week ago, the Dallas media and Dallas city officials were busy planning (and printing in news papers) the championship parade routes in Downtown Dallas, after the Mavs took a 2-0 series lead. Dallas sports writers loudly proclaimed that the Mavs would come back home to Dallas as champions, after dismantling the Heat here in Miami.

And yet, here we are. Game 5 and the series has yet to be decided. In fact, it’s dead-even.

It can be said that the Mavs are a team in disarray right now. The team that just a week ago was practically being fitted for rings is now suddenly down a key player with Jerry Stackhouse serving a one game suspension. Head coach Avery Johnson moved the team out of their Miami hotel over to Broward to, in his own words, “get them out of a vacation” mentality. Their team owner is griping about Shaq and the Heat supposedly throwing elbows. And their star, Dirk Nowitski, has yet to make his mark in this series.

By no means am I saying this thing is over. We all know where that road leads. Nowitzki can drop 50 against the Heat tonight faster than I can post this blog entry. Let’s not forget how dangerously efficient these Mavericks are. Just think back one week ago today if you’re having trouble remembering.

What I am saying is that, right now, more than ever, the Heat must seize the opportunity. With all the struggles the Mavs are facing today, the Heat need to keep applying pressure, need to keep playing aggressive, need to keep playing within themselves, so they can give themselves a real shot at winning the first NBA title in franchise history.

We all know what’s at stake here in Game 5. A win for the Heat means two shots at winning one more road game, which would give them the NBA Championship. A loss almost guarantees the Mavs the championship win back in Dallas.

But with the Mavs reeling the way they are, with Shaq playing with new life, with the Heat D clamping down, with one last game at home for the 2006 season, and with Dwyane Wade proving his utter brilliance as the game’s most electrifying player, the Heat are closer than ever at making history.

They just need to seize the opportunity.




Win Game 5 and retain the momentum.

It starts tonight. Let’s Go Heat.


I think Shaq is going to have his best game of this series tonight. Of all the guys on this team, no one knows and realizes the importance of this game more than the Diesel. He is going to come out and have a vintage Shaq game.

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