Year two of the “Big Three” project in Miami is currently in progress, and patience is growing short in Miami. If they do not win a title this year, a roster overhaul may take place.
Standing in the way for Miami is a New York Knicks team that was revitalized under the leadership of Mike Woodson.
Carmelo Anthony has returned to his old self, and the new supporting cast in New York is one that is immensely better than the one in Miami.
The only problem is that LeBron James is having his best season yet, and Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are other options to pass to, (which LeBron surely will).
Heat-Knicks Series Preview
The Heat finished with the second-best record in the East, behind the Bulls, and basically conceded the race for first place as they dropped three of their last four games while key players got some much needed rest.
The key, as always, will be the play of LeBron James. He must overcome his past playoff shortcomings, most notably last year’s NBA Finals, and be confident in his game. He leads the Heat in points (27.1), rebounds (7.9), assists (6.2), and steals (1.9). This is why he is a likely candidate for MVP, even though Wade and Bosh play alongside him.
The Knicks have had a season filled with countless unexpected story lines. The one known without mention is the emergence of Jeremy Lin, who is unfortunately out to start the playoffs. The only way to see Lin in the playoffs is if the Knicks were to advance to the next round.
After an 8-15 start, Lin led the Knicks back to .500 on a seven-game win streak. Once at 15-15, the Knicks went 3-9 in their next twelve, which led to the resignation of Mike D’Antoni. This seemed to jump start the Knicks, especially Carmelo Anthony.
The Knicks must have good performances from guys like Steve Novak, J.R. Smith, and Iman Shumpert in order to help take the load off of Carmelo. If Novak and Smith can continue to shoot at such a high rate, there is no reason why this series should not go at least six games.
Heat-Knicks Series Prediction
In three meetings this season, the Heat defeated the Knicks all three times. The closest game out of these was an eight-point win for Miami.
The Knicks will play tough throughout, but it will take a miracle to defeat the title-hungry Heat in the first round.
Prediction: Heat in Seven
- Saturday 4/28: Knicks at Heat
- Monday 4/30: Knicks at Heat
- Thursday 5/3: Heat at Knicks
- Sunday 5/6: Heat at Knicks
- *Wednesday 5/9: Knicks at Heat
- *Friday 5/11: Heat at Knicks
- *Sunday 5/13: Knicks at Heat