Improbable! Scorched and burned, the Heat survive

Forget the loss-win, loss-win, loss-win erratic first six games of the Miami Heat. Forget the fact that the last time they won back-to-back was 12 games ago (last May 15). Forget the idea that Miami has been inconsistent, that each time they seem to gain the momentum, they falter.

They won’t falter in Game 7. Not after yesterday. Not after dying and coming to life. Not after trailing by as much as 10 after three quarters, not after being 5.2 seconds away from humiliation and ridicule — not after the ups and humps and bumps they’ve endured since the NBA season started last October 30.

It comes down to one game. Broken down to four 12-minute quarters, that’s 2,880 seconds. In each of those seconds, the entire world, from Balamban to the Carribean to Talamban, will be glued to their TV monitors tomorrow (9 A.M., Phil. time) for this grand finale.

This is why we love sports so much. It’s like a movie. Only, better. Because in reel stories, we can predict the ending. (Superman always survives.) In the real world, we never know.

But this we know: Momentum, for the first time, will be behind the backs of team black-and-red. How can they not ride on the inspiration from Mike Miller’s one-foot-with-socks three point shot? Who could have scripted a better 3-pointer — and he’s not Danny Green.

After yesterday’s thriller and this see-saw series, tomorrow will be one of the most awaited of sporting events.

GULLAS. A huge basketball fan, here’s Congressman Samsam Gullas: “What comes around goes around. We may have forgotten Tony Parker’s shot during Game 1 and how that hurt the Heat. Well, Allen’s 3 with 5 seconds left was a dagger that may be embedded on the Spurs heading towards Game 7. Advantage heat on Thursday. But since the ball is round it may go either way. Not to mention LeBron showed us that the he’s clutch after all. Someone who wouldn’t agree that LeBron was 95% of the reason Miami won that game is truly a Heat or LeBron hater. Heat would be crying now if it wasn’t for the best player in the planet.”

STEPHANIE FROM MIAMI. Thanks to the help of friends (among them, Spanish Consul Anton Perdices, my former classmate), I was able to find someone in Florida who can give us the feel and atmosphere in Miami.

Stephanie Ignacio, watching Game 6 with family (all Filipinos) at a Miami resort, said they “almost got kicked out for screaming too much.” Here’s Steph, straight from Miami yesterday:

“Right now I am answering this as I watch Game 6. So far its been nerve wrecking… There’s a lot of screaming and excitement as you can only imagine a close Pacquiao fight in the Philippines. It’s what we wait for all series, this is it!


“I have been to many games, but the most recent game was against the Pacers. They played strong but ugly… It was a good game all the way through.. To the last buzzer of the 4th qtr, Lebron gave us a shot for overtime. Of course, we won.

“To say that I am a HUGE Heat fan would be an understatement… There aren’t a lot of Filipinos down here that I can say are as crazy. But if you live here, you’re bound to be that ‘crazy’ Heat fan. As for any Filipinos Heat parties going on tonight.. I don’t know ha! But one thing I do know is, my family, the Ignacios are in a crazy screaming match as we speak..

“It’s big for the city because the Heat are pretty much the only good team in Miami. They account for a large amount of revenue for Miami. Even though the Marlins just built a new stadium they still can’t draw in fans.

“Over here in south Florida, we idolize the Heat. Especially when it comes down to the Finals, everybody gets together and makes a party out of it. It’s as fun as it is almost a serious event for us.”

FINALLY… LeBron said: “It was by far the best game I’ve ever been a part of. The ups and downs, the rollercoaster, the emotions, good and bad throughout the whole game. To be a part of something like this is something you’re never going to be able to recreate once you’re done playing the game and I’m blessed to be a part of something like this.”

Categorized as NBA
John Pages

By John Pages

I've been a sports columnist since 1994. First, in The Freeman newspaper under "Tennis Is My Game." Then, starting in 2003, with Sun.Star Cebu under the name "Match Point." Happy reading!

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