Chillin Chillin...

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

I must admit...

Before I get to my confession, let's talk about the Heat vs. the Mavericks in the Finals. The storylines this Finals matchup has are unbelievable.

1 - Let's start with the future of the NBA. Does it get any better than Dwyane Wade and Dirk Nowitzki. Well, I guess some people would include LeBron, but I think these two guys are the best right now. Nowitzki is the future of what every team will want at the center position (of course this after Duncan and Shaq retire), and Wade should be what every kid playing ball on the streets strives to be like. Wade does it all and unselfishly.

2 - First year coach versus hall of fame coach. What Avery Johnson has done with this team is unbelievable. A lot of people think the coach is an overrated position, but I am one of those fans that think it is very important. Motivation, focus, and keeping your team under control pays big dividends. You almost have to view the coach role as a CEO with basketball knowledge. It takes someone who has been in that position to understand how important it is (weird, since I have never had the type of positon... at least yet). It's so nice to see Riles being in the big game again. It feels like yesterday (ok, not really yesterday), that he was taking my favorite team (yes, I was a Laker fan preHeat) of all-time to the Championships in the 80s. Which of course included who I view the best basketball player of all-time, Magic Johnson (ok, I guess that's my biased opinion... but he's any easy second best of all-time).

3 - One word. Shaq. Do I need to say more. The humor, the one-liners, and his kid like behaviors always provide entertainment. Not to mention his dominance on the court.

4 - The amount of veteran all-stars (particularly on the Heat), that are probably looking at their final opportunity to get a ring. Payton is a good story. Walker and Stackhouse are as well. But nothing would make most Heat fans happier than seeing Alonzo Mourning (my second favorite player) get a ring. This guy has been the heart of the Heat for so many years now. Aside from Magic (my favorite player, if you didn't catch on to that in the earlier point), I can't remember a guy who brings his best game to the court day in and day out, and puts his entire heart into the game. The guy gets me out of my seat when I am watching him. What this guy has overcome with his kidney ailment is unbelievable. Hopefully the Heat will win it for him.

5 - How could we have a story line that didn't include Gator Nation, especially since the entire world revolves around the best city (gainesville of course) and college in the nation. We are witnessing pure greatness when we speak of players like Udonis Haslem and Jason Williams. We could expect nothing less from Florida graduates... I mean a Florida graduate and a Florida ex-student.

6 - And now to my confession. Probably what could turn into the biggest story line of the series... Mark Cuban. I have to admit, I am a BIG Mark Cuban fan. I know he has more haters, but I think this guy is awesome. Successful business man, lots of money, and the Dallas Mavericks as a hobby. Are you kidding me?!?!? I envy this guy. He does what any successful business man would do. He does whatever he thinks he can do to get an edge for his business. Whatever it takes. One hundred thousand dollar fines, blogging about anyone and anything, and getting in anyones face (including Mr. Stern and the refs) when he isn't happy with what he sees.

If I were to come up with a phrase to describe Mark Cuban it would be poker's check-raise, and here is why. Old schoolers frown upon the check-raise. It was considered rude and bad form. People would get killed for check raising back in the day (I think, maybe they would just be kicked out of the game). Well today's generation is all about the check-raise. It's all about doing whatever it takes to be successful at what you are doing. If it's a check-raise, complaining about the refs, or blogging about a coach or player, then you have to do what you have to do. That's the new generation for you. The old-schoolers just have to accept it and get with the program, or they will be lost in the dust...

But for the next week or two I will be putting my Mark Cuban fan club T-Shirt in the back of the closet. I am officially on a two week hiatus of admiring this guy, and will join the old-schoolers in criticizing his antics. Hopefully he will not get in the way of the Heat winning the championship. Hopefully he will keep his mouth shut, and stop complaining about anything and everything (yeah right).

Only time will tell. All in all it should be a great series. My prediction of course will be for the Heat to win. I'm thinking in 7. Should be fun.



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