Tale Of The Tape: San Antonio Spurs vs Miami Heat
- ExperienceThe Spurs have not really changed. Their best players have gotten older without ever getting old, and the supporting cast that has filled in the spaces not covered by Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker over the years is now so sprawling as to be indistinct.LeBron James isn't quite 30 years old and while he and Chris Bosh are both in their respective primes, Wade at 32 years is still on the young side when it comes to their teammates. It's exactly this reason why this team thrives in high pressure situations.
- Is Winning Game 1 Crucial?The Spurs have never lost Game 1 of an NBA Finals. They've won each of five Game 1's in the title round, doing so by an average of 10.4 points per game.LeBron has never been part of a Game 1 road victory, in any round. James has been on teams that opened playoff series on the road seven times. They're 0-7, losing by an average of 12.3 points.
- Down Time Before The Game BeginsThe Spurs aren't doing anything officially basketball-related until Tuesday. They beat Oklahoma City on Saturday night, and had no practices scheduled on either Sunday or Monday.Miami ousted Indiana on Friday night, then took Saturday and Sunday off to refresh and recharge.
- How Healthy Are They?With Parker's ankle taking him out of the last game of the Western Conference Finals - many fear that his nagging injury could flare up in the Finals.Wade's persistent knee injuries has hampered him for the last couple of years. But there's a difference between getting hurt and being too old to play the game. At the moment, Wade is neither.
- Team DepthThe Spurs premier players still have household-name recognition. They are no longer a team that rel on the 'star power'. They are just as likely to depend on someone such as Boris Diaw. There could also be plenty of opportunities for some of San Antonio's lesser-known names, from Danny Green, Kawhi Leonard to Patty Mills to shine.Miami is getting timely contributions from a deep roster featuring Chris Andersen, Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole. And, of course, there's LeBron James. The Heat have a better outlook on winning their third consecutive championship than they did a six weeks ago.
- Texas vs FloridaIt's Texas - Duh?Florida - Why?
- Battle To Get To The FinalsThe Spurs have been tested, first by the veteran Dallas Mavericks, then by the extremely talented Oklahoma City ThunderThe Heat waltzed through the Eastern Conference with relative ease.
- Points Per GameSpurs 105.4Heat 102.2
Prediction: Spurs in Seven