I get it -- it's Wednesday, you're halfway through the week. By this time, you're tired, hungry, sick of work, sick of school and just want to go home, lie down on your couch/Lazy Boy/chair (whatever) and get lost in a Suns game. Well, you're in luck because tonight the Phoenix Suns face LeBron James and his Miami Heat! That's right, it's LeBron's team now!
Now before I go any further, I'd first like to warn you that I am indeed a "Heat Hater." In fact, I even belong to the official "Heat Haters" group founded by ChiTownCliff. Now, let me just add that all this hating is in all good fun and shouldn't be taken that seriously. After all, it is very fun to hate on the Heat, especially when they're losing and have LeBron James on their team. Not to mention that Chris Bosh is vastly overrated. If you don't hate the Heat, do me a favor and hate them tonight because your PHOENIX SUNS are bringing their talents to South Beach! Alright, onto the game preview.
The Suns and Heat are two very different teams despite sharing the same record (6-4). The Heat came into this season with great expectations and so far have ... well, let's just say they aren't as good as advertised to be. The Suns, on the other hand, were picked by most "experts" to finish no greater than a 7th or 8th seed. However, this team has surprised me the past 10 games by showing more grit, toughness and resilience than I thought they had. Take into consideration a brutal schedule, an injured center, rust and 3 new acquisitions to work in and I'd gladly accept a 6-4 record.
This is a mediocre team right now which, to many, is disappointing. However, they will get better in due time. Although, "great" they are not, "great" LeClown and Dwyane Wade are and because of that, the Heat will eventually be great, right?
I've done some scouting and apparently they can't rebound that well, either. In fact,
The Heat have issues- "Gobbling up missed shots is another simple way to generate easy, close-range buckets. The Heat haven't been helping themselves in that respect. They rank 29th in the league in offensive rebounding rate, while James has two boards on the offensive glass all season and Bosh is about half his career number."- Kevin Arnovitz
Also,"They just don’t have size to battle. They have the fewest points in the paint of any team and that’s tough."- Mark Cuban
It kind of surprises me that LeChoke is only averaging 5.6 rebounds a game in 37 mpg compared to 38-year-old Grant Hill, who is averaging the same in just 27 mpg. Their best rebounder is 6'8 Udonis Haslem, who pulls down a respectful 8.6 boards in 27 mpg. Lol. Of course, the Suns can't rebound or defend the paint at all, which leads me to ...
The Suns and their Issues
- Rebounding - WE SUCK!
- No Center - which is why we can't rebound. Get well soon, Robin ...
- Turnovers - Wait, we fixed this ... nevermind, phew!
- Dudley's shooting - I'm going to take it that he's going through a slump like every shooter does at some point in their life. Only 27% from three, geesh! Still, Dudz brings the energy and intensity every game. Expect that energy and intensity to sky-rocket to unmatched levels of greatness and magnitude as soon as he has just one good shooting night, which hopefully is tonight. I called it!
The Game Plan
There's really not much to say. I mean, guys like LeBron and Wade can just drive to the hole at will against us. We could go zone, but then you've got Carlos Arroyo, former Suns James Jones (who's shooing 50% from three this year, by the way) and Eddie House, who are all deadly shooters from outside. Still, seeing how we can't rebound or expect to make 22 3-pointers every night, all we have to do are these few things (as evidenced by the Denver game) and we win:
- Start an upheaval with the Miami fan base. Working on it ...
- Never give up, never surrender!
- Scrap, claw and hustle.
- Don't turn the ball over.
- Score more points than them.
No problem, so all in all, Nash and crew just need to go all "spinning Tarzan jujitsu" on them and we win!
Got some Links for ya!
Phoenix Suns' Schedule Tonight: Visiting The Miami Heat, 5:00 P.M. AZT - SB Nation Arizona
if the Suns are going to steal a game on this back-to-back, this is the one. The Heat, as a whole, are much smaller than tomorrow night's foe, the Orlando Magic. Down one Robin Lopez and up one Earl Barron, the Suns will appreciate the lack of proficient size on Miami's roster.
Suns.com - Hill gives his secret to thriving in back-to-backs
Sure he just isn't using some of Michael's Secret Stuff?
Yahoo!Sports - James complains about playing time. - "For myself, 44 minutes is too much," James declared. "I think Coach Spo knows that. Forty minutes for D-Wade is too much. We have to have as much energy as we can to finish games out."
Peninsula is Mightier - Nice game preview here from the Heat's perspective.
Suns vs Heat preview - "I think guys are starting to get comfortable playing with each other and it has shown in the last couple games we've played," Richardson said. "We have to continue to grow as a team."
The Colbert Report - Stephen Colbert interviews Commissioner David Stern.