Tonight marks the start of Game 1 of the NBA Finals between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Miami Heat. It’s definitely the match-up that most (not me, I hate the Heat) wanted to see. We have 4 legit Superstars in LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, and Dywane Wade, and 2 Stars in Chris Bosh and James Harden. In OKC,you have the best crowd in all of the NBA (sorry Sacramento and Golden State fans). In Miami, you have perhaps the worst fans, front-runners who show up to games late (even Lakers fans know to show up to playoff games early). Both teams were built differently but yield similar results. Two young exciting teams with “Big 3” cores. The Heat built up through free agency while the Thunder were forged through the NBA Draft. So now it’s time for my breakdown and prediction (sure to be wrong) for the NBA World Championship (even though it’s only played in North America?).
- Point Guard – Russell Westbrook, Derek Fisher vs. Mario Chalmers, Norris Cole — Westbrook is one of the best point guards in the NBA. It’s a toss up if he is the best “scoring” PG in the league (Derrick Rose, sadface he’s hurt). Chalmers will get somewhere between 8 to 14 points a game, but the difference in both talent and experience (old man Fisher) gives the Thunder the edge here. ADVANTAGE OKC.
- Shooting Guard – Thabo Sefolosha, James Harden vs. Dywane Wade — Harden is the 6th man of the year, Wade is a former Finals MVP, Sefolosha is a solid defender who can hit the open shot. At this time, I don’t think anyone would take either of these guys over Wade, but judging this solely by the position, 2 are greater than 1. ADVANTAGE OKC.
- “Small” Forward – Let’s be real, neither of these guys are small. LeBron James vs. Kevin Durant (no offense to Shane Battier or Mike Miller). This is the match-up everyone wants to see. How often they guard each other is questionable. LeBron is the better athlete, the better overall player, KD is the better pure scorer. As much as I love the Durantulla, nobody in their right mind would pick him over LeBron (and I hate LeBron). ADVANTAGE MIAMI.
- Power Forward – Serge Ibaka vs. Chris Bosh — I love, love, love Ibaka’s team defense. His offense is questionable (despite his bursts in the playoffs). Chris Bosh is a horrible defender, but he is one of the best scoring bigs in the NBA. With that being said, if Ibaka goes over to help on defense, Bosh will have open looks, if he’s locked in, he will hit them (think this year and last year’s Eastern Conference Finals). With that being said, and as much as I hate to say it, Bosh has this match-up. ADVANTAGE MIAMI.
- Center – Kendrick Perkins vs. Joel Anthony — The Battle of the Century. Nobody cares bout these guys. Anthony is offensively deficient. Perkins is a liability on pick and rolls. Perkins is the better player. ADVANTAGE OKC.
- Other Guys – Not labeling it the bench, but just the other guys who weren’t really mentioned. Nick Collison is pretty much it for the Thunder. Battier, Miller, James Jones, Ronny Turiaf. Wow, I never thought I’d be picking it this way but I’d go with Miami here. ADVANTAGE MIAMI. (I gave the advantage to Miami as far as “other guys” but many people have been upset I didn’t mention Udonis Haslem, because he sucks, but here you go guys, Haslem is an “other guy”)
- Coaching – Both of these guys are idiots. Coach Spo looks like a guy that needs to be punched in the face for that stupid smirk he makes. Coach Scotty Brooks looks like the guy from Franklin and Bash (also of Road Trip fame). Spo has the better defensive squad. Brooks has the better offensive squad. It’s gonna come down to which of these guys can make an adjustment faster. Ehh, I can’t pick either here. NO ADVANTAGE, both teams need better coaches.
Well after all of that, I have a 3-3 tie with the 7th factor being a tie. Does that mean this is going to 7 games? Maybe. My heart wants to pick the Thunder, because I actually like their team. My gut says the Heat will win because I hate them and that’s the kind of year I’m having. I don’t think it goes 7. I think whoever wins it gets it done in 6 games. I’m rooting for the Thunder, they represent all that is right in the NBA (except for the whole moving the team from Seattle thing…sorry Sonics fans). Let’s hope the build up was worth it and this series delivers. Yep, you read all that right, I didn’t actually pick a winner because it can go either way. Legacies will be cemented after this Finals, are you gonna be a Michael Jordan, or are you gonna be a Karl Malone? Durant vs. LeBron…err I mean Thunder vs. Heat, tonight is the night (is the night, is the night).
(Yes I’ve linked this before, but seriously, how does this shit not get you hyped up. John Tesh, please sell this song to ESPN!!)