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05.03.2019 06:59
In a special Fathers Day edition of the Three Man Weave, Duane Watson and Will Strickland from TSN 1050s "1 On 1 With Will & Dua Antworten

In a special Fathers Day edition of the Three Man Weave, Duane Watson and Will Strickland from TSN 1050s "1 On 1 With Will & Duane" bring on Canadian basketball blog boss Ray Bala of the Can Ball Report to collect ties, aftershave, socks and thoughts on the current state of the NBA Finals!Do the Miami Heat have a chance at making history and winning three straight to win the NBA Finals? Bala: I would say no. Keith Hernandez Jersey . They have two things going against them. Firstly, the Spurs have been playing some incredible basketball that has been about as textbook as you can imagine. The teamwork and the defence plus some all-world play both by Kawhi Leonard and Boris Diaw, on the road no less, has been unstoppable. Secondly, Game 5 is in San Antonio and since the already rabid Spurs fans will be sniffing the title now, making the environment something akin to the lion food in the Roman Coliseum. And did I mention that history is not with them either? Strickland: Chance? Yes. Multiple chances, as a matter of fact: Slim and none. As great as the narrative could establish itself to be if Miami miraculously came back to make this a competitive and epic Finals, there is nothing exhibited in these first four games that would indicate that the Heat have the valentine or testicular fortitude to climb that mountain now. Watson: None. The Spurs can smell blood and they dismantled the Heat in Games 3 and 4. Coach Gregg Popovich has his team far too disciplined to rest on their laurels on home court. The Spurs will take the Larry OBrien Trophy in five games, as Miami has no sense of urgency and cant find scoring outside of the Big Three or defend anyone and that goes for all 13 members of the Miami roster.What do you look at as the biggest key to the Spurs success in the Finals? Bala: The biggest key to the Spurs success is their depth of experience. Sure Leonard, Green and Diaw have been playing out of their minds and the Big Three of Parker, Duncan and Ginobili had been solid. But its the experience among all of them, as well as others, that have kept the edge on the Heat. The panic button never seems to get pushed when things start to go awry and even after the Game 2 loss at home, they came back to pummel the Heat on their court twice, running their system and playing their game. Key word in the last sentence being THEIR. That kind of poise in a championship final only comes with experience and I think we are being shown that it will beat out youthful athleticism. Strickland: Remembering how to forget. Coach Popovich brought his charges into training camp before the season, slowly and painfully breaking down how the Spurs let one get away last year, then put it away forever. Pops understanding of how to manage his team throughout the regular season, limiting their minutes in preparation for this moment was genius. But his adjustment of inserting the multi-dimensional point forward Boris Diaw into the starting lineup for Game 3 was so masterful that San Antonio may be counting one for the thumb and never see another Game 6 in these playoffs. Watson: When a team is doing everything right, its hard to pick just one thing. They are moving the ball exceptionally well, in addition to shooting at a high field-goal percentage, but their defence is what is giving the Heat fits. Not just contesting shots, activity in passing lanes or stealing the ball, but second-man rotation has been solid by the Spurs and, as their hallmark, its any player on the floor wearing black and silver, not just the starters. Is Kawhi Leonard a similar player if drafted by any other team in the NBA? Bala: I dont think so. Leonard, in his role now with the Spurs, is in the ideal place. He would be asked to do more of one thing or another with any other team, or less, and that could likely lead to a drop-off in something else. Right now, hes the do-everything athletic guy on a Spurs team that, though, has athletes, doesnt have one like him. Teams in the NBA all have a vet guy, or three, like Kawhi and that would compete with him growing as a player. There is no way that he would be the same player anywhere else for what hes shown us in the Finals. Strickland: No. Being able to come into a team and system that mirrors his character, personality and demeanour to a tee with veteran leaders and a winning culture that wouldnt depend on him to be the face of the franchise right away was ideal for him. The Spurs R.C. Buford knew what he was doing and exactly what he was getting when he traded George Hill to the Pacers for Kawhi Leonard.Watson: Of course not. Hes still a talented and gifted player, but he was drafted by a team that didnt need him to come in right away and score or be a lockdown defender. He is coached by the best in the game and has learned and watched from Hall of Fame players and how to conduct himself as a professional. Does the result of the NBA Finals affect the Heats off-season free agency moves? Bala: Either way you cut it, its a yes. With all but two players guaranteed to be on the roster, this should play a huge role now. Assuming that the Three Amigos take their player options, for one of the two years at least, the Heat will need to find the pieces to build around them within a workable budget for necessary complementary talent. If any of them opts for free agency, the team will have to replace that player AND just about everyone else too. That will be a huge problem because the calibre of player and chemistry will be tough to find. Lose or, if you believe in miracles, win, Miami has a long summer ahead of it. Strickland: Absolutely. The roster is aging in dog years, especially with one of their stars whose name rhymes with "Wwyane Dade." The Heat need to address getting younger players who fit their culture and can contribute right away. Pat Riley will also have to look at shoring up problem areas at the point guard (Kyle Lowry?) and down low with solid bigs who can help drag Miami out of the NBAs basement in rebounding, score a bit and be a defensive presence in the paint. Carmelo Anthony is not the answer to the Heats needs right now. Watson: Not really, although the Finals have shown them that they are in worse shape than they previously thought. If Dwyane Wade is going to retire as a Heat player, the team needs more support. This season alone proves they cant coast through and expect to compete in the Finals. Miami has played a lot of games over the last three years and its apparent they are tired and too top-heavy. They can take a note from the Spurs or two regarding balance. Four games deep, who is the Finals MVP? Bala: My pick is Boris Diaw. I cant believe I just said that. I, like Im sure many have before me, have ragged on him at some point in his career, but hes looking like the championship-era Bulls Scottie Pippen right now. Hes been a catalyst on both ends of the floor and its been his ability to not just make plays, but timely ones has been a sparkplug for the Spurs and a dagger for the Heat. I know Leonard had some big performances, as did Parker, but without Diaw the Spurs could be looking at 2-2 or even 3-1. Strickland: Can an entire team and organization be named MVP? No? Okay. Well, I currently have co-MVPs in Boris Diaw and Kawhi Leonard. French Pastrys insertion into the starting lineup shifted the Spurs offence into high gear, especially Kawhi Leonard. Leonards stat lines in Games 3 and 4 are shinier and MVP-calibre, but Diaw as a catalyst facilitating so many good things on the offence cant be overlooked. For a guy who once was the MVP of a foreign hoops league while averaging 7 PPG says a lot about how Boris Diaws impact on this series. Watson: Kawhi Leonard, despite Tim Duncans consistency. Leonard has shot .590 from the field averaging 16.8 points and 5.5 rebounds per game, while defending the best player on the planet in LeBron James. He has also forced to make James and the rest of the Heat work on the defensive end and is poised to be holding the Bill Russell NBA Finals MVP Award. Leonard has taken the next step in his career and no better time than the NBA Finals. The Three-Man Weave contributors are co-hosts of TSN Radio 1050s 1-on-1 with Will and Duane, Will Strickland (@WallStrizzle1) and Duane Watson (@byDuaneWatson) and guest point guard and owner of a quietly hot sneaker collection Ray Bala (@CanBallReport). Miles Mikolas Jersey .com) - The Golden State Warriors have started another winning streak and theyll try to pad it Tuesday night when they head to Staples Center to face the Los Angeles Lakers. Brett Cecil Jersey . The Calgary skip fell 10-8 to Swedens Oskar Eriksson in semifinal action Saturday and will face Switzerlands Peter de Cruz for the bronze medal (Saturday at 10pm et/7pm pt on TSN2). http://www.cardinalsrookiestore.com/Cardinals-Bob-Gibson-Kids-Jersey/ . It took five games, but the Celtics finally helped Stevens earn his first NBA victory. "Im going to celebrate for a whole 12 minutes, and then Im going to start watching Orlando and trying to figure them out," the first-year Celtics coach said after Boston beat the Utah Jazz, one of the leagues other winless teams, 97-87 on Wednesday night.ARLINGTON, Texas -- A.J. Pierzynski and Mike Napoli had run-producing hits in the first inning against their former team and the Boston Red Sox got above .500 for the first time since three games into the season with a series-clinching 5-2 victory at Texas on Sunday. Napoli put the Red Sox ahead to stay with an RBI double, two batters before Pierzynskis two-run single. Both went to Boston as free agents after being in Texas -- Pierzynski was the Rangers primary catcher last season, and Napoli was there the previous two years. John Lackey (5-2) struck out nine while allowing two runs over seven innings. The big right-hander threw 75 of 105 pitches for strikes without any walks. Rangers lefty Robbie Ross (1-4) made it through 6 2-3 innings and a career-high 112 pitches, settling down after being down 4-0 after two innings. Koji Uehara, who also went from Texas to Boston in 2013, worked a perfect ninth for his ninth save straight save. The Red Sox (19-18) won the last two games in the series after being held to one hit by Yu Darvish Friday night. They have won six of their last eight games, and have a winning record for the first time since winning two of three in the season-opening series at Baltimore. Shin-Soo Choo homered for the Rangers, who have lost 10 of 14 overall and dropped seven of their last nine home games. Dustin Pedroias two-out solo homer in the seventh chased Ross, and was the first Red Sox hit since Jonny Gomes one-out single in the third. Ross faced the minimum 13 batters between that, with only one runner reaching on an error being wiped out on a double play grounder. Bud Norris Jersey. . It was the second homer for Pedroia, who led off the game with a double before Napoli drove him home. Lackey, a Texas native, made his 20th road start against the Rangers, surpassing Seattles Felix Hernandez for the most. Lackey is 14-15 overall with a 5.71 ERA in his career against Texas -- those are his most losses and highest ERA against any AL team. Choos fourth homer was an opposite-field shot to left-centre in the fourth to make it 4-1. Mitch Moreland had an RBI double in the seventh before Lackey struck out his final two batters with two runners on base. Notes: Boston is 10-4 against left-handed starters. ... This is the earliest Boston and Texas have completed a season series, which the Red Sox won 4-2. The Rangers had won the series each of the previous five seasons. .... Texas is 31-18 vs. Boston since 2009, still the best record by any Red Sox opponent in that span. ... Red Sox 3B Will Middlebrooks was scratched with soreness in his right hand after being hit by a pitch Saturday night. The Red Sox said it was a precautionary move and expect him to be available for their next game Tuesday. ... Napoli has reached base in 31 consecutive games. ... Rangers 3B Adrian Beltre, shifted toward shortstop, made a back-handed scoop catch after running a long way for David Ortizs popup near the foul line to end the second. ... Boston is off Monday, its third of four scheduled off days in a 22-day span. ' ' '

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