Monday, June 19, 2006

Timeout Knocks Out Mavs in Game 5

Huh? I can't believe that after what was probably the best game of the NBA Finals so far, this is the point that the idiots in the sports media want to focus on. I think they must have been watching a different game than I was. If Dallas had taken the timeout when they wanted to, they would have had a much better oppurtunity to make a game-winning shot. But there were only 1.9 seconds left, it was still going to be a desperation shot, and the odds are they would have lost anyway.

Dallas Mavericks Coach Avery Johnson shook things up in recent days in his playbook, in the newspapers and among his players, and nearly every strategy seemed to pay off in Game 5 of the NBA Finals on Sunday night...[a]nd then all that fine work was ruined by one erroneous timeout

Yeah, Dwyane Wade's 43 points had nothing to do with it, it was that one timeout that ruined everything.

Here's another point in this stupid article that I take issue with.
Johnson also successfully employed the "Hack-a-Shaq" strategy late in the fourth quarter, directing his team to foul Shaquille O'Neal immediately on two possessions. On the first, with just over four minutes remaining, O'Neal hit just one free throw, bringing Miami to within 81-79. On the second, with Miami trailing 86-84 with just under two minutes left, O'Neal missed both.

Successfully seems a bit overstated to me, since they lost the game and everything. As a Laker fan, I've watched many a game where this stupid "Hack-a-Shaq" strategy has been employed, and I can't remember a single time when it has been successful to the point where the opposing team actually won the game. In my mind, once you get to the point of trying this, you've already lost. In the possessions mentioned above Shaq only made one of four free throws, which could be seen as a victory, I suppose, but had Dallas just played defense, maybe they get two stops instead, and Miami gets no points on those possessions. They did only lose by 1, after all. Also, Dallas was leading in the game when they did this crap, which I really don't get. Maybe the extra time in the game because of this stupid strategy was just enough to give Wade one more possession to make his last shot to tie the game. Anyway, if I was an NBA coach, I would never do this. Fouling Shaq in the course of the game is just smart, but doing it this way just tells your team that you don't think they can play defense. And doing it with a lead tells them that you're afraid.

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Toast said...

Your a Lakers fan??? Ugh.

John Howard said...

Yeah, but it's been tough to be one the last couple of years. Not because of how the team has done, but because of the way they blew it with Shaq.

Please refrain from using 'your' in my comments when you mean 'you're' or I'll come to yours and comment on each and every blog you write.

Mike Meitín said...

Re: Hack a Shaq.

This strategy is ridiculous most of the year, but absolutely absurd in the NBA finals. First of all, for a team like Dallas that operates on offense and rythym, and can execute a great fast break, breaking the pace of the game is an assinine move. Second, you are in the NBA finals, you are one of the two best teams, you must have played some successful defense sometime. They often use the term "let the players play" in regards to foul calls, but in this instance maybe Avery Johnson should have "let the players play". Worst move of the NBA finals thus far.

John Howard said...

I agree 100% Mike.