Sports Talk: Pattern or not, it’s been an exciting NBA Finals

If you’re a San Antonio fan – and I doubt seriously there are many of you in this neck of the woods in Ohio- it’s the Spurs’ turn to beat the host Miami Heat tonight in Game 7 of the NBA Finals.

It’s of course been a flip-flop series with each team alternating wins.

San Antonio almost swerved from this pattern by winning Game 6 and the NBA championship Tuesday night, but…alas, it was the Heat’s “turn” to prevail – and they did in a come-from-behind fashion.

If you’re a Miami fan – and there’s probably not too many of you around here, either – you’ve got to feel pretty good about this game being played on the Heat’s floor. That in itself is a slight advantage – but, homecourt or not, it’s obviously still no guarantee of a victory.

The Spurs have already beaten the host Heat once in the series, and they’re very capable of doing it again.

Momentum. San Antonio had it for a bit in Game 6 but lost it – and ultimately the game in overtime.

The Spurs have to be kicking themselves for letting this one slip away.

Miami has the momentum, now – and oh, yes, the Heat also have a guy by the name of LeBron James.

Whether Ohioans like or dislike James – if you’re objective – the Akron native is still the best basketball player on the court and on the planet today. Maybe even all-time – but that’s an argument for another day.

James of course can’t win the championship alone. He’s going to need help and lots of it. But if he scores 30-plus points in the contest, the Heat’s chances look encouraging.

The Spurs, meanwhile…well, it’s going to be interesting to see if they can bounce back from Game 6. Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobili are all veteran players who have been there and done that before. There’s really no reason to believe that they can’t do it again – even on a “hostile” floor.

Some people are inclined to blame San Antonio coach Gregg “Media Friendly” Popovich for Tuesday night’s setback, but that’s a little unfair. He never took one shot, grabbed any rebound, or dished out any assist in the game.

He did though make a couple of questionable substitution moves on the court which in hindsight really hurt the Spurs. Seems to me that a coach would want to win or lose with his best players not sitting on the pine at critical moments in the game.

And, finally, the best seat in the house for Game 7 of the NBA Finals is right in your own living room and watching it on TV. According to StubHub, the price for a single ticket in Miami tonight is nearly $400.

Oh, moan over Miami, that’s way too much.

Ron Johnston is the Marietta Times sports editor, and can be reached at 376-5441 or at rjohnston@mariettatimes.com