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Wednesday, June 8th, 2011 at 9:32 am  |  137 responses

LeBron James Silent as Heat Drop Game 4

by Adam Figman / @afigman

It felt like an inevitability. It wouldn’t take much—just two, maybe three buckets—and then LeBron James would snap out of the abnormal funk that plagued him for Game 4′s first three quarters and put away the Mavs.

Dallas—who managed to scrap up enough buckets to remain competitive, even with strong offensive performances from Dwyane Wade (32 points) and Chris Bosh (24 points)—was making it difficult. Sooner or later, LeBron would toss in a couple daggers, remind everyone that he is indeed the best player in the League, and the Heat would claim a 3-1 series lead and craft a clear path to the Championship trophy.

Or not.

Despite being guarded by the older, less athletic (trying to be nice here) Jason Kidd, Bron never got it going, not even a little bit, and finished the tilt with a Playoff career-low 8 points off 3-11 shooting from the field. He did sneak a quiet 9 rebounds and 7 assists into his stat line, but his presence on the floor wasn’t felt—not when it was most needed, not even when it wasn’t.

“[I] didn’t play great offensively,” James said postgame. “I’ve got to do a better job of being more assertive offensively, not staying out of rhythm offensively the whole game.”

“He struggled—point blank, period,” Bosh confirmed. “We’ve all done it at times in our careers, and it happens. […] He just has to bounce back and be himself, play his game, and the great player that he is. We know he’ll bounce back. And we need him. So everything else will be fine after that. He just has to go and play.”

It was also the first time James scored in single digits during a post-season game, a feat he hadn’t accomplished during any of his 89 prior Playoff battles.

“He’s physically fine,” coach Erik Spoelstra said. “I don’t have to do a better job of making sure he’s in positions where he can be aggressive and efficient. We’ll do that in Game 5.”

That, too, feels like an inevitability. We’ll see.

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  • http://www.slamonline.com Max

    Or Lebron explodes in game 5 for 40 or He keeps playing like ish.

  • http://www.google.com/news BETCATS

    In before the “MJ never was held to 8 points in an NBA Finals game”.

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    SMH, I figured LeBoy would have posted by now! lol

  • dsleepy

    you’re doing great, lebron. just keep doing what you’re doing. no need to change anything, it’s perfect the way it is

  • grenners

    This is pretty cynical but i cant help get the feeling that this poor performance was premeditated and contrived. Wade has clearly been the MVP (for Miami) thus far, so Brons advisors will have suggested that the only way he can get the finals MVP is to hit rock bottom and then dominate in the closers, otherwise the ‘sidekick’ tag is his new legacy… Conspiracies suck and all, but come on, I could score 8 points on JKidd…

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    ^ Jason Kidd plays good D son.

  • Papou

    MJ never was held to 8 points in an NBA Finals game.

  • AT33

    DWade is the best player in the league SLAM!!! How much more does dude gotta do to prove everyone that he’s the best player in the world? I got one advice for Miami: TRADE BOSH!!!! he’s weak defensibly and no threat in the post!

  • shuref00t

    I seen that kind of lackluster playoff performance from LeBron last year, when the Celtics knocked out the Cavs in game 6 of the eastern conference finals. Uh-oh! New “Decision”, LeBron’s leaving Miami now!

  • http://www.slamonline.com Eboy

    Sunday night, 6/12, about 11:00p, can’t come soon enough.

  • bull22

    you know i cant stand the heat, but i certainly dont like that fan then yelled at LEBRON, you were HORRIBLE, do that when your team wins the title but don’t give a reason for this dude to comeback and get 50pts on your team on thursday,
    i cant stand the dude but he is good enough to comeup with a big game….

  • JTaylor21

    Well if MIA runs more plays for dude like they are for Chris Bosh, dude will take more than 11 shots. Half of the time Bron is standing in the corner while Bosh goes Iso vs a superior defender.
    Run some damn plays, Erica Slostra

  • SigmaMan

    Since when does the “world’s best player” not show up in the nba finals. He is clearly not being as aggressive as he was in chicago series. Wade is clearly the best in the league, he is playing like a man possessed.

  • Lz – Cphfinest3

    So what is the excuse this time; did Big Cat bang Gloria?

  • lp

    MJ was never held to 8 points in a finals game……

    In fact, he never had less than 20…..oh.

  • MikeC.

    Wade and Bosh both had it going on. There’s only 1 ball. Usually it’s Bosh that doesn’t show up and has the crappy stat lines while Wade and James play well. This is what happens with 3 stars on 1 team. Eventually they all have to take turns not getting a ton of shots. I’d rather see James deferring to Bosh and Wade because Bosh is a solid 3/4 player. He tends to clang short when the game is tight in the 4th and I’d much rather have Lebron feeding Bosh for clang-clang jumpers than a warmed up Lebron cutting the Mavs to shreds. That being said, when the Mavs have Kidd on Lebron, why the effing eff do the Heat not post Lebron every single time? He has a 5 inch and likely 60-pound advantage on Kidd. Hook shot anyone?

  • neaorin

    Lz – don’t be silly, his elbow is bothering him.

  • Lz – Cphfinest3

    neaorin, of course the elbow… MikeC. maybe the Heat didn’t post James because his post game is highly suspect.

  • phil

    i’d like to file a report for a missing person. his name is lebron james

  • G Diesel

    Amber alert for Princess Jimmy. If found please contact his mother Gloria James or his step-dad Delonte West.

  • angus

    bron needs to stop thinking he’s Magic when he needs to be Micheal, you are not a pass first guy!!@

  • Anthony

    comparison between MJ And Lebron will never stop but they ned 2 cuz Lebron is differnt…. Lebron is a willing passer.. Jordan neva was…….. Lebron coulda have an impact on the game and not score,Jordan cannot……….

  • Bruno

    so what can Scottie say about this? hahaha

  • http://WWW.SLAMONLINE.COM Benn0

    @anthony – but jordan always had an impact on the game, because he didn’t produce 8 point games in the finals. Anyway, who gives one if lebrons a willing passer, when your team needs you to score, because bosh and the bench isn’t getting done (as usual), then you can pass all you like, but the ball won’t go in the basket!

  • Kundai

    Lebron will bounce back. All great players do. The only thing he did wrong last game was pass up some attempts that we dont even know if they are going in are not. he still almost finished with a triple double 8,9,7. Im a fan of Wade and Lebron i just dont think its just to be so critical of Lebron playing only 1 bad game. When wade had to be carried by him for having a horrible chi-town seires and average boston series.

  • Byebye

    Wade an bron don’t even talk on the court anymore jus watch during time outs they go to different places an never talk it’s crazy to see
    I don’t think they will be together very long
    An another thing Dwade let labron do all the work against the bulls
    Dwade then all of a sudden got his legs back he couldn’t get the ball over the rim to dunk now he blocking chandeler on dunks dwade did bron wrong knowing he was trying to win mvp

  • eric

    Naw,Lebron will not bounce back. The Heat are toast. They will lose the next two games and Dirk is going to dance in Miami.

  • ThaWindy

    Like LBJ said, if they win his 8 pts is no big deal. Kinda like when pp say Dirk HAS to have a big scoring nite in order for Dallas to even have a chance. I think some how they lost their offensive game plan and decided to play game 3 ball and ride Wade. Instead of making sure they had their normal balanced attack of Wade, LBJ and Bosh. Plus Wade choked at the line.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    The King is not Michael Jordan. He is LeBron James.
    Nobody is Michael Jordan.
    Nobody.

  • JTaylor21

    Byebye knows what’s up. There’s definitely something up between the two but even if there is, Bron needs to stop acting like a b*tch out there and man the f*ck up. All this passing to teammates and standing the corner act is played out. It’s the freaking finals, don’t wait for the game to come to you, go out there and take it.

  • samo

    Delonte has to be one disappointed father right now

  • http://slamonline.com 1982

    While Adam read my mind – who didn’t think Lebron would eventually TRY to do more? – I don’t see this as an epidemic. He doesn’t have too many back-to-back poor games, at least stat wise. Maybe he needs to get whatever Dirk has… And MJ was never held to only 8 in the Finals because he was busy being DWade. Too soon?

  • samo

    anthony – jordan averaged more assists than lebron in the playoffs….

  • eric

    What if Lebron is pulling a kobe and not really trying? Maybe his pissed at Spoe’s offense.

  • JTaylor21

    ^Erica Slostra has an offense? Who knew.

  • http://slamonline.com 1982

    Of course Spo has an offensive scheme. He called all of those wicked drives to the basket by DWade. He even called for that block on Chandler. He yelled something that sounded like, “Oh Crap,” which is Heat Code for DWade!

  • EastDallas

    Am I the only one who thinks the pre-game Lebron pep-talks look forced and uncomfortable? All the players have this look in their eye like, ‘OK, we get it, you’re the King.’

    Why isn’t Wade, the guy who’s done it before, giving the pre-game talk?

  • AQWORD

    I think spo is still trying to figure out how to distribute the ball effectively.

  • http://Slamonline.com Nbk

    LeBron was horrible last night. Spoelstra/Dallas have nothing to do with it. That was totally bizarre.

  • robb

    First time in 90 playoff games he’s been held to single digits in points. It’s too weird it happened during a crucial game like this. maybe Byebye is right…

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    LeBron got slowed down by an old JKidd and was caught standing in the corner just waving his arms a whole lot of times… You know, the same kind of stuff that Kevin Durant got killed for on here.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    Theoretically speaking, this could very well be a 3-1 series in favor of Dallas. Of course it’s not, but it could be.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Atleast Kevin Durant had a little bit of a reason, Russell Westbrook was just hoisting um up, in Miami, LeBron looked to defer and then go to stand in the corner. Befuddling.

  • http://slamonline.com Bacon

    Everybody talking about Lebron bad game but Wade missed key free throws late in the game

  • Allenp

    He was passive because his jumper wasn’t falling and he had a built in his excuse for being passive in passing to Wade and Bosh. Since he doesn’t like to post and isn’t as effective off the bounce as Wade Kidd can guard him.
    He needs to get on the block like he did against Chicago and early in this series and get buckets or fouls. The Heat wasted a good Bosh game and subpart Dirk game. They better get their minds right.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    I really don’t think his play is a huge deal, honestly. It’s only a topic because the Heat lost. Had they won, his performance would’ve assuredly been spun into how awesome it is for him to be deferring to a teammate like Wade who is 2006′ing it right now.
    It’s all overblown because dude is gonna come back and have a MONSTER Game 5. Watch…
    And to the beefing between the two stars point, I think that’s ludicrous. Who cares?!
    LeBron didn’t go to Miami to dominate on a stage that he’s never dominated on before. He didn’t go to Miami to win Finals MVP. He went down there to win a ring, right? That’s all that matters, right? That’s what he was celebrated for — subjugating his own ego and individuality for a common goal. As long as Miami wins this series, nothing else matters. Not even the fact that if they do win, DWade will have carried LeBron to a championship, not the other way around.

  • http://nba.com EJ

    So it’s just Spo who’s choking, not Lebron?

  • bull22

    lets give it up for ANTI-JORDAN (LEBRON) doing an unjordanlike performance by scoring less then double digit points… my curiosity is did gregg doyle get to him and cause him maybe to play-halfhearted to show how important to the team he is and then tommorrow we shall see 40 or 50 from him? because all this talk of sacrifices but lebron still has an ego….

  • Eddie1

    bull22 you’re greg doyel without the decent job, high salary, name recognition…congrats homie!

  • eric

    Bryan Crawford, do you really believe Lebron is going to have a monster game? Come on man, that’s not happening. For the finals everything is going to run through Wade first. Lebron won’t get enough touches to have a monster game. Miami missed their shot at a championship last night. I’ve got a feeling that Dallas is going to roll in the next two games.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    I said this on the liveblog but its worth repeating IMO, before last night LeBron lead Miami in Points, Rebounds, Assists, Steals in the playoffs. Its pretty f’n ridiculous that anyone insinuates its Wade’s team. At most it’s both their team, 1A and 1B, but other then that LeBron just had a bad game….a really really bad game, inexplicably bad, but it doesn’t change any pecking order or anything like that. All of this extra speculation is dumb

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    Actually Eric, I do expect him to have a monster Game 5. Like triple-double, monster.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    But right now, nbk, with everything on the line, it’s DWade’s team. Bad game from LBJ or not, that’s inarguable at this point.

  • ugly_fish

    LONG…LIVE…THE KING!

  • http://slamonline.com 1982

    This series has been 50/50 up until the last minute for 3 out of the 4 games. It’s split at 2-2. Why are people jumping to conclusions already? First a Miami sweep after gm1 and now Dallas suddenly has enough firepower to take the next 2 in a row? Stop watching the highlights, and try watching the entire game, just once this series. It’s worth it…

  • http://www.bulls.com Rigo Gonzalez

    82′s right

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    I absolutely hate the assertion that this is “everything on the line” – what were the rest of the playoffs? If miami lost then its not like they got a retry. Also Dwade has had Jason Kidd, Jason Terry and JJ Barea guarding him the majority of this series, to be surprised that he is outscoring LeBron is the exact same thing as being stupid. Before last night LeBron had Shawn Marion and Deshawn Stevenson on him every minute, those two are very good defenders. (What happened last night is un-explainable and i’m not defending anything that happened then). But before that, in games 1-3 Dwyane Wade leading the team in scoring should have been a given, I mean clearly if you have the 2 best players on earth and one of them is being guarded by a 38 year old PG that one better have a more efficient scoring series. — Which brings us to last night and LeBron not being aggressive against Jason Kidd for whatever reason, if he’s gonna play like that then yes, its clearly Wades team. But my perception of the Heat’s pecking order is not going to change after 1 game, because really, 1 game is all Wade has been clearly better then LeBron James as a basketball player.

  • tone tone

    lebron will soon be known as a “choke artist “if he doesn’t hurry up & get on the ball. no he’s not MJ but he’s gotta be a better LBJ& he can if he stops listening 2 Skip Bayless & stays within himself–FOCUS MAN!there really should be no1 out there stoppin’em-he possesses rare gifts 4 some1 his size-POWER,BALL HANDLIN’,PASSIN’,ETC…so the only thing that any critic would hav 2 legitimately ? is his heart & desire.so i’ll put it this way if he’s ?ing that about himself then Miami is in serious trouble.

  • bull22

    @eddie1, lol a decent job i have but certainly not gregg doyles salary, that would be nice…
    but doyle gets a having guts award because no matter what happens in this series, LEBRON will never here the end of it, but he asked for it with his arrogance….

  • Jose

    i bet no one would be saying anything if LBJ had the 24 points instead of Bosh, but i guess it is different because Bosh doesn’t command the double as Wade and LBJ do. . . . *cough* lebron nearly had a triple double *cough* lol

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Thank you NBK.
    It’s win or go home in Round 1 just like the Finals.
    And quite a few of the cats killing Bron now fully expected him to choke on the moment in Chicago.
    Dude shined while Wade faltered and he carried them to victory.
    Now he’s sucking. Seems like it would be simplistic to say that Wade carried him, or he carried Wade. This is ain’t Jordan and Pippen. this is much more like Magic and young Kareem or Baylor and West than people realize.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Right Allen, I see them as equals. THey want us to see them as equals. I don’t see why it’s so hard for everyone to do so. They take press conferences together, actually have they done anything at all not as a pair since the season began? They are the NBA’s Starsky and Hutch, like Triple H and Shawn Michaels, Scorpion and Sub Zero, Eggs and Bacon. Atleast I think that’s what they want us to see them as.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    So the early rounds of the Playoffs and the Finals are the same thing and to add more importance to one over the other is wrong… OK, got it.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    Shout out @ugly_fish.
    Now, what in the hell is goin’ on ’round heeere? lol

  • thecomputerdude

    This is hilarious. Just last week Lebron was the best thing since MJ. Can’t wait to see Game 5.

  • G Diesel

    @Bryan Crawford: theorically speaking, the HEAT should’ve won this series 4-0, had Lebron actually showed up.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    So your saying it would be less of a failure for Miami to lose in the 1st round then the finals? Ofcourse not, how bout the 2nd round? or conference finals? If Miami lost in those they would be getting 10X the criticism (especially from you) then if they lose in these finals. — If anything, these finals mean less to LeBron as an individual then the rest of the playoffs did. But if you think that just because everyone goes home after this series that makes whoever performs the best the “leader” or whatever then that’s cool, totally disregard every other variable, like the previous 3 rounds & 82 regular season games, disregard current matchups, & everything else but scoring, it makes perfect sense.

  • http://www.bulls.com Rigo Gonzalez

    Magic played with a young Kareem?

  • K

    He gave the inpression that he was thinking about everything else but the game…….maybe some off court troubles but come on that was just fxxxxckxxxed….nothing like lebron

    I dare say heat in 6

  • http://slamonline.com 1982

    @G Diesel Theoretically speaking, On Paper the Lakers shouldn’t have gotten swept, the Heat should be fishing and waiting till next year before they gel, and OKC should be in the Finals because they have a true inside presence now…no?

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    And, co-sign thecomputerdude…

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Kendrick Perkins is quickly turning into the most overrated player in the NBA.

  • Red Star

    Coach Speo isn’t right in the head! Call an FN play! Close games come down to coaching and that he did not do well!

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    ^So, the Perkins trade WASN’T stupid???
    For EITHER side???

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    First off, I haven’t criticized LeBron at all. I actually brushed aside Game 4 as a “whatever” moment. Because that’s what it was to me, whatever. I’m not delighting in his poor play, I could care less. Dude will bounce back, I know this, so one bad game means nothing to me.
    Also, had Miami lost early, yes, they would’ve been criticized harshly (and rightfully so). But they didn’t. They lost 1 game in each of the first 3 rounds and were actually celebrated for their play. So screw the “what if’s.”
    And if the Finals really mean less to LeBron than the first 3 rounds of the Playoffs, then that qualifies as a HUGE PROBLEM because THIS IS IT right here. There are no more rounds after this. You either get your name in the books as an NBA Champion or a 2x loser. So it better mean something to him.
    Finally, I could care less who the leader is of this team because it doesn’t matter. HOWEVER, to this point in the Finals, DWade is LEADING this team, that’s a statement of FACT and not my opinion. Is it because of his matchups? Sure. But don’t sit there and tell me that the best player in the game should have problems with Shawn Marion and DeShawn Stevenson. That’s just completely unacceptable.

  • http://Philosophervision@blogspot.com The Philosopher

    ^Bryan Crawford ends the thread…

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Bryan
    If Shawn Marion and Deshawn Stevenson are superior defenders to Kidd and Terry. Chandler is a very good help defender.
    More importantly, LeBron’s jumper isn’t falling now like it was against Chicago, which makes him far less dangerous. Plus, as I said, he’s not posting up.
    I’m not discounting the idea that Wade has been the clear leader this series, I’m just noting that every bad aspect of LeBron’s play this series was also evident in Wade’s play last series. It’s like the two just switched roles for whatever reason.
    Because of that, I can’t say it’s a matter of being clutch, or one being a better leader overall. It seems to be something else, I’m not sure what.
    Basically, they’ve both had dominant series and subpar series, and medium series. Philly they were both decent although Bron was better, Boston they were both decent although Wade was probably better, Chicago, Wade sucked, Bron killed, Dallas, Wade kills, Bron sucks.
    It’s pretty freaking uncanny when you consider it.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Rigo
    Not young, should have said youngish or prime. He was 32 when Magic joined the team and they won their first ring.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    BC, I am not saying he SHOULD have problems. I am saying Wade SHOULD be the 1st option, and leading scorer, he should be, and is. — And I am not saying this series doesn’t mean anything to LeBron, I’m saying in terms of him personally, as an individual (which he said 2 days ago he doesn’t care about, at all) the previous rounds meant more, as he would have never lived down losing to the Bulls or any team before he got to them. — The point is, just because Wade is playing better in this series, that doesn’t make him anything more to the Heat then what LeBron is, it doesn’t change any pecking order, and it doesn’t hurt LeBron’s “legacy” or whatever. Before yesterday there was literally no talk about how much better Wade has been then LeBron in this series, just talk about how LeBron does whatever is needed for his team to win. One bad game, and all of these people’s perceptions change? wtf. I know your perception hasn’t changed at all, but are you reading the other sh*t people are saying? If LeBron goes for 40+ in game 5 then we have to deal with the exact opposite reaction to what happened yesterday. I just wish people could be objective. Wade will get finals MVP (I don’t see Miami losing this series) but it won’t really matter, it is the second time he’s been the second best player on a team all year only to become the bees knees in the finals, don’t understand why it comes as a surprise. Honestly this whole rant has very little to do with your stance on the matter, your opinion makes perfect sense, I just don’t enjoy reading the other opinions that draw imaginary lines and conclusions out of nothing.

  • http://slamonline.com The Fresh Prince of Nsam

    Oh, BC has resurrected…

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    The payoff when you win in the Finals is greater than in any other round, but a loss in Round 1 or a loss in the Finals gets you the same thing.
    There is only one champion. Either you’re the champion or you’re a loser.

  • AQWORD

    ican’t beleive BC got sucked into that. It was always Wade’s team & it will be.that aside. Game 4 Bron was obeying his coach.(too much) i would say. That’s what happend. I’m sure spo will adjust it , but at the same time everyone will expect James to have a big nite game 5 so look out for the unlikely hero.

  • doyouwantmore

    Wade and James won’t last together. Even in the game 2 post-game interview I noticed that Wade called himself the leader of this team. It sounded like a subtle shot at Lebron. It really is Wade’s house.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    nbk, if LeBron actually “said” that rounds 1-3 meant more to him than the NBA Finals — and I don’t know that he did because I didn’t see or hear the quote — then there is something SERIOUSLY wrong with that.
    And I’m sorry, but if Miami wins this title and he continues to be a spectator, more or less, then that will indeed hurt his legacy. A lot more than you may care to admit.
    And if pecking order is what the conversation was originally, then my bad. Had I known that I wouldn’t have even bothered saying anything at all because that’s too silly for me to even waste time on.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    NO LeBron didn’t say that, but its obvious isn’t it, if he didn’t bring Miami to the finals this year would have been a failure and you know it. If they lose now, the season isn’t a failure, it’s what everyone expected (even you said you thought it would take them a year) And, What do you mean if you had known it was about pecking order you wouldn’t have even wasted your time, you got in the conversation with me, you said this, “But right now, nbk, with everything on the line, it’s DWade’s team. Bad game from LBJ or not, that’s inarguable at this point” – WTH did you mean by this is DWades team if you weren’t talking about pecking order, its not me that started this conversation.

  • http://slamonline.com AllBall

    Just like Kobe never winning Finals MVP when Shaq Fu was around doesn’t hurt his legacy? Yeah right.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    basically Miami losing in the finals is what the majority of people predicted in the regular season, either that or losing to the Celtics. (Not that many had them actually winning) Miami had to get to the finals after the Perkins trade to avoid disappointment, and now must win the finals to accomplish THEIR goal. Its crappy revisionist when the thing that was expected starts to happen (kind of) but everyone reacts like its a big surprise/failure. The whole “whose team is it” question is played out and dumb, its neither of their team, or it always changes, either way, making some concrete assertion that one player is the “leader” or “alpha male” whatever just leads to a constant change in opinion, week after week, series after series.

  • bull22

    @dowantmore, that is a great observation because did we not hear earlier in the season
    lebron saying i wont let my team down and now wade is saying it LOL! gosh talk about being the three stooges…. one day someone in that locker may write a book about all of this and make some serious money…

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    How has Kobe not winning a finals MVP with Shaq hurt his legacy? unless your under the impression that he was a better player then Shaq his legacy is right where it should be, top 3 SG ever, right around a top 10 player, but not better then Shaq or Tim Duncan in the all-time ranks.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    That wasn’t a pecking order comment. Or at least I didn’t mean for it to come off that way, nbk. I’m simply stating that with the way he’s been playing so far, he’s leading this team and LeBron has, to this point, just been along for the ride.
    The whole “Whose team is it” convo is a tired debate anyway because as Allen pointed out, either guy is capable of carrying this team at any given time. But this is the Finals, so everything is magnified. People may remember, but nobody will care who carried the Heat through rounds 1-3. The only thing that will matter is who showed up in the Finals and who didn’t. Win or lose, Dirk has redeemed himself from ’06 and his play in this series will garner him a much higher level of respect from everyone. That’s just the way it is.
    So like I said, let Miami win this title with LeBron playing the way he’s been and all people will remember is that Dwyane carried LeBron to his first championship.

  • http://slamonline.com AllBall

    And Mario Chalmers could be the Heats answer at PG long term. His decisiveness has been great, he obviously isn’t afraid of the big stage. I should have already known that after what he did at Kansas.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Alright my fault BC, I misunderstood what you were trying to get across. — BUT, lol, we both realize he only played that bad once right? I know from your previous comments you don’t think he’ll put up a performance like that again, so why do you even say “let Miami win this title with LeBron playing the way he’s been and all people will remember is that Dwyane carried LeBron to his first championship” you know he won’t play like that again. Wade will win finals MVP, but the real basketball fans won’t be stupid enough to say Wade carried him to a championship, we all saw everything else that lead to this point.

  • ThaWindy

    Its only DWades team when has a better game than LBJ.. It’s not LBJ fault Wade can’t make a ft. Had two turnovers that cost them the game. Couldnt even get a good look becuz Wade had KY Jelly on his hands. Wade blew it. He wanted the ball, he got it, and he choked! LBJ had 8 pts and they still had a chance to win the game. Film will tell Wade to pass the ball.

  • ThaWindy

    Should I say, had a chanse to tie the game.

  • T-Money

    I can’t defend what happened yesterday. I just can’t. I wanted to throw things at the TV the way he was so passive taking ball screens going East-West.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    nbk, we’re 4 games in, right? OK, LeBron has been outplayed from an individual standpoint by DWade in the 4th quarter where the last 3 games have all been extremely close (2pts, 2pts, 3pts). And in each of these games, LBJ hasn’t made a SINGLE SHOT in the last 10 minutes(?!). That’s what I meant.
    So he has been playing poorly. Aside from last night, his stat line just hasn’t reflected it.

  • fruizm

    @All Ball….I actually think Chalmers made some poor decisions in the last couple of minutes.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    You mean he has been scoring poorly. Which he has, but basketball as most of the slamverse would like to believe, is not all about scoring. He gets no credit for locking down Jason Terry? No credit for the assists and rebounds? Actual points accounted for, (points plus assists (and whatever basket comes with them)) per 4th quarter, Wade was (before last night) “outscoring” LeBron by 5, still out performing but not at all by the same margin as just Points per quarter would lead one to believe. LeBron is underperforming yes, immensly, but its still overblown. He played HORRIBLE last night, his worst playoff game of his career by far, and he still almost had a triple double.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Wade isn’t outperforming LeBron by 5 points per quarter, by 5 in points per 4th* quarter.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Angel of Stern

    is it really already guarenteed that Wade will win finals MVP if Miami wins? Lebron was great in the first win and was worse in the second win. If Bron thoroughly outplays wade in the next two wins, then he will have been the better player in 3 of the 4 wins. Isn’t who plays best during the wins a big part of it? or is just putting up big numbers in losses justification for a finals MVP?

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    See nbk, your comment is the very reason why I say that LeBron has insulation so good it would put the Pink Panther out of business. Giving him credit for all of the little things is almost like a reflex now whenever he does underperform instead of just simply saying, “Dude stunk it up” without adding the “but…” on the end of it. There isn’t another player in the League that gets the same benefit of the doubt and you know it.
    Case in poinit, Kobe grabs 15 rebounds while going 6-24 in Game 7 of the Finals last year, the Lakers win, but all anyone wanted to talk about was how bad he shot the ball and the rebounds didn’t matter even though he grabbed more rebounds in the game than anybody on both teams with the exception of Pau.
    So for me, the bottom line is this: In the last 3 games with the outcome hanging in the balance, what did you do to impact the game to help your team win?
    So far, he’s made the pass to Bosh for the game winner. They lost the other 2.
    I’m not trying to be critical of the guy because I’m way past that now, but damn, let’s at least call it like it is.

  • flipnoyce

    I don’t know what you’ll thinking but this MIAMI team right here is their team (WADE,BRON,BOSH). They’ve all risen on occasion by taking turns. Sometimes all of them!Sometimes just 2 of 3. They came together with a common goal, which is to win a title. That is THE ONLY REASON for coming together and nothing else.So F*** the individual stats out the window because I’m sure thats what they had to sacrifice for coming TOGETHER! Blaming BRON, WADE or BOSH after losing every other game is senseless because they are a TEAM.
    So far these series has been a really tight one!In order for MIAMI to win these finals they would have to blow up the MAVS by a large margin just to secure a win and not rely on the CHARITY line given by the officials. Twice they’ve tried but only to be caught up at the end. I’m still picking Dallas at 7.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    I didn’t make any excuses about yesterday, my comment was about what had been happening in the series BEFORE yesterday. And @angel of stern, if finals MVP was givin to he best player in wins, Pau Gasol would have won finals MVP last year.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Angel of Stern

    Also, Bron would never admit it but I think he is a little bit fustrated because Wade made him do everything in the conference finals while he was just waiting for the finals so he could reappear, all rested up from doing f**k all, and get all the glory

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Bryan I haven’t once said LeBron was the best player on the Heat in the finals, I am not giving him credit for anything, just repeating a statistic that is fact to show that just because LeBron hasn’t been scoring doesn’t mean he hasn’t made a positive impact. (other then last night obviously) But I am not defending him, his performance, specifically last night was inexcusable, but it didn’t change anything. He’s still the best player on the Heat, he’s still 1A or 1B in the pecking order, and the Heat still need him to win the title. nothing’s changed, he just had a horrendous game.

  • flipnoyce

    Whose taking the last shot for Miami if the game is on the line? Has always been my question since day one of the coming together. Almost none of them seems to want be that superstar and rise to the occasion when it really matters most!

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    This is pointless.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Angel of Stern

    what I really want to see is Miami down by 1 in game 7 with 15 seconds left and the ball. That would be insane…

  • http://fivemag.de Speedy

    Maybe now EBoy will think about posting comments like last game when he said ‘ Then Dirk choked twice’ when he was obviously the only one holding Dallas in the game.
    These players are all human. Even DWade as we saw.
    I think nearly everybody on this site forgets that from time to time.
    I do fear LeBron and his reaction in the next game because I know what he is cappable to do.
    Nice series.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    This is a great series regardless of who plays well. Both teams are duking it out to the last minute and the defense being played is sublime. I wouldn’t be surprised if this series went the distance.

  • michael

    LeBron James’ flop on Brendan Haywood: 2011 NBA Finals Game 4
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=foaPMZxtzx4

    lebron was lucky he evn got 8 pts

  • http://www.slamonline.com unf*ckwitable

    I think i picked heat in 6 before the series. But im pretty confident this series will come down of the last minute in the seventh game now. No matter who wins this has been the most enjoyable final seires in recent memory.

  • http://ZOGS.CA ZOGS

    TAKE YOUR SPOON…AND EAT THE SH*T THAT DIRK SHAT ON YOUR CHEST LEBRON!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • baykusreyiz

    LeRobin

  • http://www.bulls.com Rigo Gonzalez

    Co-sign AllenP at 5:12

  • http://www.slamonline.com unf*ckwitable

    BC and NBK you two are always in some sh*t on here. Doesnt it tire yall out?

  • monkeyball

    Since we should all know by now that nobody can be compared to Jordan, how about we compare Lebron to other greats. Other than Jordan, every great player had several bad games in the Finals. Magic famously choked numerous times in the 1984 Finals, and Bird in 85. Kobe’s had bad offensive games, as did Shaq, Duncan, Garnett, etc… IF (HUGE if) the Heat end up winning 2, 3 championships, with Lebron doing it all and Wade being the hero in big gsmes, BOTH of those guys have to be compared to great players who had great help.

  • http://Slamonline.com Nbk

    It’s been a while since me and BC got into it on here. I get tired of it once it gets remedial like it did today, which was my fault just saying the same sh*t over and over. Personally though I like getting into combos with the regulars, we go at each other’s opinions without getting all worked up. Plus it’s always good to get a fresh perspective that doesn’t come straight from a big media source.

  • Jackie Moon

    How exactly is this guy better than Kobe? DWade, I get, but Prince James – no contest.

  • monkeyball

    Look at the stats.

  • B-More Mike

    F the stats! His mentality compared to Kobe’s willingness to take it all on head first is ludicrous.

  • Jackie Moon

    But Lebron told us not to look at the stats after game 3. Lebron is a two-way player. Lebron does not shrink on the big stage, except when he does. The good news for Lebron is that he is young, he can change and grow from this. Whether he does is a different matter.

  • JL

    Come on it’s one game. I am not a big fan of his personality but this guy is an amazing baller. He’s averaging 44 minutes a game or something playing both sides of the court. Can he be tired once in a while? Bosh and Wade were playing great it is fine for them to just take over you only have so mnay possessions in a game! All this blind lebron bashing is making me want to kinda like the guy again (ugh).

  • http://slamonline.com Kap

    @nbk…Kobe is borderline top 5 and he is definitely ahead of Duncan. I also don’t know a better SG than Kobe besides MJ either.

  • http://Slamonline.com Nbk

    Haha ok thanks you’ve enlightened me. You would have to put together a very intelligent argument to even get me started.

  • http://bulls.com airs

    cosign @rigo’s cosign at 6:23

  • http://slamonline.com Kap

    Kobe has a better record against Duncan head to head including the playoffs. Kobe’s highest scoring average in the playoffs is versus the spurs. Kobe has five rings, top five all time scoring in season and playoffs and could be #1 soon. Kobe has more all team selections for offense and defense. I also think if you think duncan is ahead of Kobe then by the same philosophy you have Kareem ahead of Michael. Duncan also had Robison and Ginobili so there wasn’t much drop off in talent around them.Kobe is also top ten in playoffs in assists and steals. It’s gonna be tough comparing any other stats due to difference in position. I’m studying at the moment so its the reason for the incohesiveness

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    People act like Lebron has led a team to a title no, so he will disappear in games, he did it last year. The dude does not have a killer instinct of Kobe, MJ or even his teammate Wade. Lebron is a passer first and a scorer second and got lost in the Wade-I am going to kill Dallas by myself game. Lebron on his TV Special stated he wanted pressure off of himself to deliver himself rings and does not want to feel he has to go out and score 30 points a game to win. So this is Lebron and he is not What Yall Think He Is, because really what player in their prime won 2 MVPS, had back to back best records in league, seen as best player in NBA by most, leave HIS city to join another superstars CITY. ONLY LEBRON JAMES. BOOK IT!!!

  • http://slamonline.com Tae

    @nbk, dont you mean top 2 SG ever? Last time i checked it was just MJ and Kobe. Who’s that 3rd guy? If ur speaking of Wade, he’s good but he’s not even in tha top 10 all-time. He has some work to do. I would think that 3rd guy is J West or something

  • http://Slamonline.com Nbk

    @Tae depends on your definition of SG, some people argue that Oscar Robertson was more of an off guard some don’t. From what I’ve seen he was a PG but that’s my opinion. Anyway yeah top 2 SG that’s fine. @Kap ur argument is broken, so is your logic. Head to head matchups, fa real? Under my logic Kareem is better then Michael, word? Let’s act like 32 year old David Robinson and Manu Ginobili are comparable to Shaq? The Shaq who is better then the guys we are comparing in the first place? Kobe was Robin, sooner or later it needs to be accepted. Whatever. Still needs something better then that, I guess it’s only a matter of time till I’m defending Kobe against someone who thinks Wades accomplishments next to LeBron justify him as a better player all time.

  • http://fkjslf.com Jukai

    NBK: Kobe, legacy wise, is better than Robertson. I know the stuff that the Big O did was amazing, but he only won one championship, alienated his peeps more than Kobe, and his game was a bit odd and it’s quite unknown if it would translate.
    Although I’d also say Kobe is better than Shaq and Duncan too. Shaq burned too many bridges and his conditioning was inexcusable, he also tanked it in quite a lot.
    My big issue with Duncan is that he’s losing it way earlier than I expected.

  • http://Slamonline.com Nbk

    Shaq burned the bridges of what? He burned the Orlando bridge to win championships in LA, nothing wrong with that, it’s his career. Kobe kicked him out of LA, Phil Jackson even said as much. Miami gave up on Shaq because he was always injured remember? And in Phoenix they still love the guy. As for Duncan, he played 4 years of college and is 34, he’s already played more solid years then most bigmen, he didnt have a prime for one his whole career was up until this year was the same and has never missed the playoffs. Can’t say that about Kobe. Can’t say Kobe was the leader of 3 championship teams, let alone 4. Can’t say Kobe has ever won anything without a very good bigman, like nothing at all. Oh and for the record since Tim Duncan came to San Antonio, the Spurs have the highest win %, of any team, in any professional sport.

  • http://slam ben

    looks like james can not breakdown zone d.but will see what he is gonna do next in game 5,if he plays like how he played then the chip is gone to dallas. think about it wade and bosh gave thei beat but king james looks like he gaveup on em.

  • pantza

    Why is it that important whose team it is? I really cannot understand that. Would someone enlighten me please?

  • Jackie Moon

    @pantza, because it’s not about which team wins, it’s about who is the Finals MVP. That’s what matters in basketball. Forget this team stuff, it’s the individual accolades like Finals MVP, that’s the trophy that matters, not the Larry O’Brien.

  • http://www.triplejunearthed.com/dacre Dacre

    was larry o’brien one of the stooges?
    ____

    ____
    thats the kind of ish i’ve read about all day.

  • pantza

    Thank you Jackie!

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