The Oklahoma City Thunder come into these finals fresh off an incredible turnaround over the vaunted San Antonio Spurs, while the Miami Heat are coming in even fresher off their defeat of the veteran Boston Celtics. Both teams are formidable, certainly, but which one will come out with the trophy?
Let’s start with the Heat. LeBron and Wade have played excellently, as has Bosh in his limited minutes. If he keeps on making threes against the Thunder, this series might be over quickly. The Heat really seemed to pick apart a Boston team that just looked flat out tired by the end of the series, especially in the fourth quarter of Game 7. The Heat outscored the Celts 28 to 15 in the fourth, all 28 of those point coming from the big three of James, Wade, and Bosh.
On the other side, the Thunder looked very impressive, derailing the speeding locomotive that was the Spurs. San Antonio had won twenty games in a row up until Game 3, when they were stopped by Kevin Durant and company. The Thunder went on to win the remaining three games and take the series. OKC has a big three of their own in the aforementioned Kevin Durant, point guard Russell Westbrook, and reigning Sixth Man of the Year James Harden. The trio has averaged a total of 67 points, 18 rebounds, and 13 assists per game, not to mention a number of clutch shots in crunchtime. Compare that to Miami’s 67, 22, and 10, and it looks like we’ll have quite a series.
So who’s big three will win out? I think they’ll cancel each other out. If we can expect something like 60 points, 20 rebounds, and 10 assists from both of the big threes, then the game’s going to come down to the other eighteen guys.
I think it’s safe to say that Oklahoma City has the edge there. Not only do they have the imposing presence of Kendrick Perkins in the paint, but they also have shot blocking machine Serge Ibaka and wily veteran Derek Fisher to boot. Miami’s reserves consist of Mario Chalmers, a decent enough point guard, and then some outside shooters and no big men. Look for OKC to take advantage and pound it underneath. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Thunder dominate the boards in this series.
It all kicks off tonight at 9 on ABC.