By Michael Tapia– The late Franklyn Delano Roosevelt once said, “that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself”. The Boston Celtics have done it again; they proved all the pessimists around the league wrong by beating the much-feared Miami Heat for a second time in as many weeks. The Celtics clearly defied the odds installed by fear and this time they did it while playing in Miami at Wades, James and Bosh’s home. With Boston beating Miami in two consecutive meetings, the question poses what is stronger courage or fear.
With Thursday’s win, Boston’s big three showed that they have more than luck over Miami’s big three. But with Rajon Rondo playing like an all-star compiling 17 assists are Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen the only factors to take into consideration or should we start referring to Boston’s assets as Boston’s big four?
Perhaps there should not be any surprise that Boston has beaten Miami twice. Maybe those who find this a shocking phenomenon are refusing to admit that Rondo has evolved into Boston’s fourth deadly weapon. Are those who doubt the Celtics forgetting that maybe Rondo is the “x factor” in the Miami vs. Boston equation?
The Celtics stunned the Heat in the season opener 88-80 and they did it again Thursday night 112-107. Should this become a playoff match-up how can the Heat overcome this obstacle? The talent is obviously there, but can Erik Spoelstra handle a team with as much stardom as the Heat? With arguably three superstars who are younger than the Celtics’ stars in three of the five positions Miami should have the talent necessary to give Boston a better challenge.
Can it be that the Heat’s problem to overcome the Celtics not be the players but the coach? Does the Heat need a more experienced head coach with a stronger personality to handle such a star-studded line-up?
Maybe Pat Riley needs to step in as head coach and take care of the situation before home court advantage for the playoffs slips away. How much of a public relations debacle would it be for Pat Riley not to go all the way after all the expectation? You do not execute a master plan of this magnitude to pull a bluff on basketball as if it was a game of poker.
LeBron James is also in a very tight situation especially after pulling “The Decision” stunt on the world of basketball. One does not leave their hometown the way LeBron did, not reach higher heights and not expect to be ridiculed afterwards. Let us not forget that LeBron James did take the Cleveland Cavaliers to the finals in 2007. For LeBron to go to Miami, make such an event out of it, and not surpass his accomplishments in Cleveland would be nothing short from failure.
Even the New York Yankees that are the most successful sports franchise are criticized when they don’t win the championship because they are so loaded with talent. Let us not forget that with two out of Miami five starters (James and Wade) are arguably the best at their positions, also, a third starter that can arguably be regarded as the second best at his position (Chris Bosh).
Keeping in mind that the ratio of talent equated to the amount of positions in each sport between the Yankees and the Heat favors the Heat anything short of a championship is subject to criticism. By acquiring three superstars, the Heat have very big shoes to fill perhaps bigger than Pat Riley expected.
If the Heat are going to have problems performing against the talented teams in the East because of lack experience and strength in character from their head coach, then something needs to be done about it. It is safe to say that it is better to handle this situation now rather than later when the Heat are not able to perform in the playoffs when they posses so much talent. It would be a shame for the Heat to get frustrated and lose confidence in themselves and have them fearing fear itself.