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Spurs at Heat Tonight, Fisher to Coach Knicks

A big game three tonight in Miami with the series even at one. Both game have been tied in the final minutes; hopefully we get another close one.

Christian Petersen

Tonight's game

Spurs at Heat
8:00 pm Central

After a split in San Antonio, the Finals shifts to Miami for games three and four. Game two was dominated by LeBron James, who led the Heat to a late victory one game after suffering from severe leg cramps.  He remains the best player in the world, and that's a pretty good thing to have.

On the other hand, San Antonio has looked like the better team for long stretches, despite poor play from their third best player, Kawhi Leonard, who has struggled with fouls and hasn't found his offense while spending most of his time trying to guard James.

Both games so far have been decided by who goes on the run in the final minutes, and it's certainly possible that it will be decided that way again. Despite the fact that Miami got a split in San Antonio, I would feel OK if I'm the Spurs. The Heat have relied heavily on Rashard Lewis, and if they keep doing so, I think it will cost them. It seems to me that San Antonio can still play better, and I'm not sure how much more the Heat have than what they showed in game two.

Or I'm wrong, and the Heat are just getting on a roll.  We'll start to see tonight.

*Dwyane Wade was fined for his egregious flop against Manu Ginobili in game two.

In coaching news, the Knicks have hired Derek Fisher, fresh off the court after playing most recently with the Oklahoma City Thunder, to be their head coach on a five year, $25 million contract. The contracts for new head coaches are skyrocketing, as Steve Kerr, also a coaching neophyte, got a similarly huge deal from the Warriors.

It's been clear that Phil Jackson wanted to hire someone with whom he had a prior relationship and understood his philosophies on the game. Further, he wanted someone who would be OK with his meddling being a presence on the floor at practices and the like. It appears he's found that in Fisher.

Elsewhere, the story is that the Cavaliers offered John Calipari something on the order $80 million to be their coach and run their basketball operations. I don't know what to say about that, other than: really? That is a crazy amount of money for a guy whose main skill seems to be wooing 18 year olds.

We are two days away from the start of the World Cup, as Brazil takes on Croatia in the opening game on Thursday. The U.S. plays their first match against Ghana on Monday. I just watched Ghana dismantle South Korea in a friendly. Ouch. They looked a bit shaky at the back, especially in the first half, where I thought the Koreans could have gotten a couple, but they wound up winning 4-0 and looked very dangerous in attack. Very quick in transition.  I was feeling pretty confident after Nigeria, but not so much after seeing that display.

Today in history

1610: First group of Dutch settlers arrive to colonize Manhattan Island. Oh the real estate prices. 
1760: New York passes first law regulating practice of medicine. Oh, my son the doctor...
1793: Washington DC officially becomes U.S. capital.  Mosquitoes rejoice. 
1847: Chicago Tribune begins publishing
1865: Wagner's Tristan und Isolde premieres in Munich
1898: U.S. troops arrive in Cuba during Spanish-American War
1935: Alcoholics Anonymous founded in Akron, OH
1940: Norway surrenders to Nazis, Italy declares war on France and Britain
1963: JFK signs equal pay act (for men and women) into law. We're still waiting...
1977: First shipments of Apple II computers

Today's musical birthday(s) are Kim and Kelley Deal, born in 1961.