Spurs, Heat growing as mutual irritants


VIDEO: The GameTime crew previews Game 3 of The Finals

MIAMI – Familiarity breeds…

“Another game,” Chris Bosh said, blowing the old saying but offering perspective all the same on the Miami Heat’s ongoing clash with the San Antonio Spurs. With Game 3 of The 2014 Finals Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena, the Heat and the Spurs will have played their 10th consecutive Finals game against each other.

That’s something that hasn’t happened since 1997 and 1998, when the Chicago Bulls and the Utah Jazz played 12 straight head-to-head. The Bulls and the Jazz had seen more than enough of each other by that point, thank you. And though Bosh didn’t complete the saying with “contempt,” it would seem that after nine games against the same guys, two Junes running, the Heat and the Spurs might be getting their bellies full of each other.

“Hell yeah,” the Miami forward said after his team’s morning shootaround Tuesday. “I know we’re on their nerves. They’re on ours. So it’s part of the game. Going through shootaround, you know every single play that they’re running – but you still have to go over it. It’s a part of the grind. But we’re building confidence in our defensive coverages as we go, so that’s really helping us.”

It’s too soon to say if the Spurs and the Heat are working up a good dislike of each other. LeBron James said the other day a rivalry might exist if they faced each other four times in the regular season rather than two, as dictated by East vs. West scheduling. Still, this best-of-seven championship series did seem to gain some edginess Sunday.

That’s when Miami point guard Mario Chalmers jammed an elbow into Tony Parker as he drove to the basket for the series’ first flagrant foul. Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard fouled out, limiting his time (31:32) and his impact.

That’s also when Tim Duncan and James were slapped with the series’ first technical fouls. Last year in their seven-game chess match, there was nothing more wayward than a defensive three-second call.

Also, Game 2 was only the third time in the nine games that San Antonio committed at least 20 fouls, and only the third time the Heat shot more than 20 free throws. And if you want to break it up this way – the Spurs have lost three of their last four against Miami, with James averaging 32.3 points – that’s the sort of stuff that starts to chafe. Ditto this: The winner of  Game 3, when The Finals has been tied 1-1, has gone on to win the championship 30 of 36 times (83.3 percent).

So for all the mutual respect flowing between the clubs, each stands in the way of the other. Same guys over and over. Great competitors and irritating too, Chalmers admitted. “Definitely. Second time around,” the Miami guard said. “Both teams want it just as bad. Now they’re trying to leave everything out there to get it.”

37 Comments

  1. Manugspurs says:

    Everybody needs to forget about last year. I’m only worried about what’s going on now in this series. The Spurs are a true team! They will win it this year because the SPURS REALLY WANT IT!!!!

  2. Max says:

    Officials have to keep their JOBS! Put a T on Duncan, then must find a way to put one on LeBron, just life. However, Officials in game 3? Just could NOT keep up to really catch all the fouls, and Manu just ducked walked all night. Nothing new there, he is the best at being able to travel with ball and yes, he is the VERY BEST a weaving and wobbling and selling the Officials on a FLOP! Got to hand it to #21 he has a patient on how to wobble and Quack and FLOP, draw a foul and almost never misses at the FT Line. He could easily be considered the top for the Spurs, but never seems to draw that kind of following, but that old man can knock down threes, wobble and weave, walk to a lay up in the paint. Got to hand it to Manu, he is a magician at getting by with all kind of FLOPS/WALKS! BUT A DEAD EYE on his shots!

  3. jason says:

    Seriously, As a Spurs fan, the only complaint I had was that the refs were giving Kawhi Fouls that he didn’t commit. And also, I am tired of everything being about Lebron James and Miami. Just face it, They’re getting their butts Kicked. And yes, Parker getting elbowed wasn’t a basketball move. As long the Spurs keep the ball moving, we’ll be fine. GO SPURS GO!!

  4. Mutual Means Both Ways says:

    Hey Aschburner, have you noticed how in your “mutual irritants” article, you left out all the quotes from the Spurs about how the Heat are irritants? …or were there simply not any?

    Doesn’t come off as terribly…well, mutual.

  5. Jay says:

    lol love watching that post game video now, “I don’t see Spurs winning in Miami” , “Spurs have a tough task winning in miami” haha yah right…

  6. Jeff says:

    I guess the AC was out at the Heats Arena tonight

  7. john doema says:

    this game was great..i skipped rub maps to com where

  8. Kimmylovesthethunder says:

    A win is a win is a win! Go Slurs!

  9. kb24 > mj23 + LBJ6 says:

    poop

  10. kb24 > mj23 + LBJ6 says:

    miami cheat. lol i like that. and lol at the LeBrick fans. and lol at all thses virgins crying and arguing about something that has nothing to do ith them.

    • SharpieOne says:

      I’m not a Miami or a Heat fan. I’m also not a virgin. That being said why would you say it has nothing to do with them? Basketball has everything to do with the fans. The fans are the reason the game is played professionally. These guys aren’t playing for free in a closed gym.

      • Lebrickster123 says:

        did anyone else enjoy seeing the miami fans leaving the game early once again in bunches.

  11. Joe says:

    Chris Bosh, LeBron, and Wade all got a long. That’s why they all joined up in Miami.

  12. ghjghj says:

    if you think nba is fixed and ur still watching it, then its your problem… try watching wwe dude.

  13. cp10 says:

    Can’t we all just get along? Anyway, the animosity was worse Heat against Pacers. I wish it doesn’t have to be West vs East for the championship, I think it should be a free-for-all but I guess travelling distance is a problem.

  14. olivia says:

    Totally rigged! All of defenders, Kawhi Leonard, Danny Green and Manu Ginobili in foul trouble! This was the officiated game and so rigged! No wonder they lose viewers as who wants to see a rigged finals in favor of Miami Cheat! What a travesty!

  15. Dr Lebron Fan says:

    Kawhi fouled out because he can’t guard Lebron. And Tony Parker should win an Oscar for his wounded performance after a little nudge with the elbow. Has been a great series so far — lots of intense basketball. Shame that haters like “rusty” can’t enjoy two great players and teams facing off without calling it tainted — although I admit I had the same thoughts after the refs fouled LeBron out in the Indiana series.

    • SharpieOne says:

      Lebron should win an Oscar for his “pretending not to be able to walk” routine. The whole having to be carried off was a nice touch as well. It’s a shame that haters like Dr Lebron Fan can’t enjoy the players or the game. I guess Lebron needed an extra break and for Parker to get injured in order to win game 2. After watching game 3 do you wish Chalmers would have elbowed him harder or do you think he should have went for Kawhi?

    • SharpieOne says:

      Also not only can Kawhi guard Lebron and disrupt him but he also out scored him and had 6 fewer turnovers.

  16. Hunter 27 says:

    The NBA is fixed, aliens are interested in probing your anatomy, the government is reading your thoughts….paranoid much?

  17. Go BULLS says:

    i agree the heat are cheaters and they can not win a fair game

  18. Jordan fan says:

    I still think that Spurs will win

  19. roger says:

    ur stupid

  20. lolo says:

    the spurs won last year game 3??

  21. rusty says:

    Kawhi got fouled out… the refs are controlling the game, it’s a program for the Heat to win every game 2 of any series.. so expected they won… what else can you say about it??? NBA is a fixed game….

    • Quit Bitching says:

      So stop watching it.

      • Brad T says:

        Ha, complaining is THE BEST PART of the game, and these forums!!! Quit bitching? NEVER! Bring it!

    • roger says:

      I admit kawhi has got into foul trouble, but u can’t blame the refs.
      they do a good job. lets see you ref a game

      • SharpieOne says:

        Well I think you have to blame the 3 phantom fouls on Kawhi on the refs. I don’t blame the NBA or think it’s fixed though. It’s hard to call 3 fouls on one guy when he doesn’t even touch them. However the one where Lebron, I think it was Lebron, tripped on Ginobili’s foot right in front of the ref and they called it on Kawhi was pretty ridiculous. Calling fouls on reactions is pretty scummy as well. The refs called multiple fouls on things they didn’t even see. How could you not blame them?

    • D Wade Fan says:

      So you’re just going to completely ignore the fact that james/wade/bosh/chalmers were getting in the paint at will which is why the spurs had to foul.

    • andy_truth says:

      the refs also made parker miss those crucial free trows and told duncan to leave the area to allow bosh to penetrate.

    • BasketballFAN says:

      shamed on what you’ve just said hater…..

    • Josh says:

      You’re an idiot.

    • Federaga says:

      Totally agreed with that. I hope refs give at least similar treatment to both team. But I don´t think it´ s going to happen…

    • NBA fan says:

      really? can you stop blaming the refs for everytime miami win. the game had bad calls either way. it was a great game… miami pulled away with a min left. if you’re a true fan you would accept that miami was the better team that night with or without the refs

      • SharpieOne says:

        Did you say the same thing when the AC went out? The Heat, their fans and the media had a field day about that. Nobody brought up the things that happened when the Heat won. They completely blew off “Elbow-Gate” (knocking Parker out the game, for about the same time Lebron had to sit out in game 1, with an elbow when the Spurs were up and even when he came back he was injured.) Nobody brought up the phantom fouls on Kawhi. Everybody including myself, the fans, the media, everybody in general brought up Lebron’s very questionable 4-5 fouls in that Indiana game and nobody said “stop blaming the refs, Indiana just played better, there were questionable calls on both sides” (which there probably was, except those questionable calls didn’t drastically affect the outcome of the game.)