So far in the NBA Finals, the San Antonio Spurs have done everything they could possibly be asked to do: They got the desired split in Miami, they took two out of three games at home in San Antonio, and they haven’t let LeBron James get into a comfortable rhythm all series. But the task of winning the 2013 NBA Finals isn’t over yet, as the Spurs have to win one more game in Miami to complete the job.
The question that has to be on the minds of everybody engaged in this series (players, coaches, media, and fans) is whether or not the Spurs have to win Game 6 on Tuesday night or if they have a legitimate shot at winning a Game 7 on Thursday should it get that far.
When I made my prediction for this series, I picked the Spurs to win the series in 6 games, and so far all has gone exactly as I thought it would: The Spurs won games 1, 3, and 5, and the Heat won games 2 and 4. Up to this point, I’m looking like a smart man, and if all goes according to how I forecasted this series before it began, the Spurs will win Game 6 tomorrow in Miami.
The reason I picked the Spurs to win this series, and more specifically in 6 games is because of two things: I thought the Spurs were the better team and I didn’t like their chances in a Game 7. That’s right, I thought the Spurs were the better team, and I still do. If you look at what Danny Green and Gary Neal have done in this series for the Spurs, I think I’ve got my case pretty much locked up. The Spurs not only have a trio of their own in Duncan, Parker, and Ginobili to combat the James, Bosh, and Wade trio, but more importantly, their role players have played so huge that one of them (Danny Green) is getting strong consideration for NBA Finals MVP, whereas LeBron James, the 2012-13 regular season MVP is getting berated with insults over Twitter, Facebook, and the mainstream media for his weak NBA Finals performance.
But with that all being said, don’t be fooled into thinking that the Heat are dead, or that they can’t turn this around. If the Spurs want to win this series, their best chance is tomorrow, where they can capitalize on the Heat coming off a bad loss, instead of them coming off a win (which would be the case in Game 7). I understand that the Heat haven’t won back to back games since their series against the Bulls, but I think that if gets to a Game 7, they will be focused, hungry, and more importantly forgetful of their previous six games in this series. All that will matter to them in their minds is that they have to win one game on their home floor to win the NBA Championship, and if given that opportunity, I really like their chances despite all the good things that San Antonio has done so far in this series.
So, do the Spurs have to win Game 6 on Tuesday? I personally think the answer is yes, for the exception that if there is any team that could win a Game 7 in Miami, it would be the Spurs. Their chances of winning a Game 7 in my opinion are only around 20-25%, which means that their best chance is to come out and deliver the knockout blow in Game 6, sending the Miami Heat and LeBron James on a painful and frustrating fishing trip.
–Ben Parker: follow me on twitter @nba_lord
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