Heat and Clippers dominate final games before All-Star weekend
With the NBA heading into the All-Star weekend (held in Houston this season) what better way to finish the stretch with two great match ups. Well, at least they looked like great games on paper. The Heat went into the Thunder’s house and looked like the best team in the league. Led by LeBron (who else?) the Heat lead by as many as 23, taking down the Thunder 110-100. LeBron didn’t keep his streak going but that didn’t stop him from having a monster game (39 pts, 12 reb, 7 ast, 2 stl) to offset Durant (40 pts, 8 reb, 4 ast, 3 blk) and the rest of the Thunder squad. The Heat had a more balanced attack, lots of help from Bosh and Wade was involved while Russell Westbrook was the only Thunder player aside from Durant to reach double digits in scoring. The Thunder got back into the game with a late surge but every time the crowd got back into it, it was either LeBron or a Heat 3 point shot that answered. The only that sucks for NBA fans is that these two teams won’t have the possibility of facing each other until June, when it’s Finals time in the NBA.
Out west the battle for LA went sort of how the season has gone for these two teams. The Clippers came out strong, led by a red hot Blake Griffin (20 points in the first quarter) and things looked like they were going to be ugly. The Lakers made a comeback during the 2nd quarter but second half was all Clippers en route to a 125-101 victory in the final game before All-Star weekend. What stood out for me during this game was how effective Chauncey Billups and Antwan Jamison were for their respective teams. It’s like 2006 all over again! Anyways, the Lakers simply didn’t play enough defense (no surprise there) to keep up with the Clippers offensive efficiency. For now, the Clippers are trying to catch the Thunder or Spurs for a higher seed and the Lakers are looking to catch the Rockets or Jazz for one of those final playoffs spots.
Now come the festivities of All-Star weekend in Houston. I wonder if Glimmer (lives in Houston) will be out in the clubs with some big names this weekend. Any word from him? So we know about the dunk contest and 3-point contest tomorrow night. I like James White for the dunk contest and Steph Curry for the 3-point contest. If you get a chance, check out the Rising Stars Challenge (rookies/sophomores) tonight, simply for the chance to watch Kyrie Irving and Damian Lillard in action. Those two are the future of NBA back courts and are must watch for basketball fans around the country. Enjoy the East-West game on Sunday!