left corner left corner
China Daily Website

Nobody to scare the Heat

Updated: 2013-02-24 09:32
By Tym Glaser ()

The trade deadline came and went early on Friday morning (Beijing time) and I stupidly stayed up to see my Celtics make the blockbuster trade(s) that would push them into Eastern Conference contention or, alternately, a brave new future.

Nobody to scare the Heat

Instead, all I saw was a classroom full of general managers sitting on their hands and pursing their lips when the teacher asked that hard question about who stays and who goes.

The Celts, in fairness, had few trading chips to toss on the table, but teetering around the eighth seed and going nowhere in the Least, they could have gotten value for war horses Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce and built for a new, brighter green future.

Instead, they plucked streak-shooting guard Jordan Crawford from Washington, whose name is more basketball gaudy than his career stats line of 13.4 points, 3.1 assists and 2.7 rebounds a game, whoop, whoop Beantown's rocking now, baby.

The only team in the conference that made a move of some substance was Milwaukee, which picked up another shooting guard, J.J. Redick, from Orlando. The Bucks may need to play with two basketballs now to sate the shooting appetites of J.J., Monta Ellis and Brandon Jennings, but they are also likely to push close to the fourth seed and maybe survive the first round of the playoffs.

Meanwhile, the little boy laughed to see such fun as Miami ran away with the title.

The Heat are a handful of games clear at the top of the conference and won't be caught in the regular season. LeBron James can be crowned NBA MVP now because the only thing he can't do is dance on the rim. The Heat's lead over No 2, New York, is almost as great as the gap between the aforementioned Knickerbockers and the No 8 Buckeroos.

The Breaking Bad chemistry experiment known as NY is bubbling along quite nicely now. The Chicago Bulls, sans super guard Derrick Rose, have over-achieved thanks to a rejuvenated Carlos Boozer and stifling defense and Brooklyn, which has the best worst backcourt in the league with Deron Williams and Joe Johnson, is that dysfunctional family down the road that you never know what they will bring to your door.

However, outside of a first-round matchup with the Celts, the one team that might be concerning defending champion Miami is Indiana, aka the Land of the Giants.

The collective frontcourt height of Roy Hibbert, David West and Ian Mahinmi, plus the impending return of star forward Danny Granger and the ever-improving play of guard George Hill, make the Pacers a tough out.

Still, when the dust clears, the Heat will be representing the East in the NBA Finals because no team bought the tools to stop LeBron.

Tym Glaser is a senior sports copy editor whose favorite basketballer of all-time remains Larry Bird. He can be contacted at tymglaser@chinadaily.com.cn

8.03K
 
...
...