File your vacation leaves today everybody: The 2013 Eastern Conference Finals will be coming to a planet-shaking Game 7 conclusion tomorrow. This epic series have seen the Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers trading victories like some sort of high-intensity exchange-gift bonanza, and one team will finally get to book that sought-after ticket to the NBA Finals.
After six games of incredibly fun basketball, the biggest themes are out in the open, namely:
1) Miami’s Big Three have been reduced to The Great One, as Yahoo!’s Adrian Wojnarowski explains in his usual grave, dramatic tones.
Wade and Bosh have been non-factors. Credit goes, in equal parts, to the Pacers’ assemblage of gangly, active, and committed defenders; the lack of lift in Wade’s legs; and Bosh’s lackadaisical effort to impose his mark on the offensive end. These factors have left James in a position not unlike his hero-ball days in Cleveland.
Alarming is the Pacer’s continued growth as a team, appearing in stark contrast to the Heat’s mounting reliance on Lebron. Phenomenal as James is, we all know that the Playoffs are won as a team. If these two great players are going to show up, well, they better show up in the next game.
And not in this manner: