Open Thread: NBA Finals Game Four
6.20 The Cooler

Miami Steals Game 4 Despite 43 From Westbrook; LeBron Is Hurt

By 06.20.12
Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook (photo. Jeff Forney)

As good as Miami’s X-factor (Chalmers) played, Oklahoma City’s X-factor was that bad. James Harden did pull down 10 rebounds, but he’s being paid to get buckets and spark offense, which he isn’t doing in this series at all. Last night Harden shot 2-for-10 and turned the ball over four times. He looks like he has zero confidence in his jumper right now, and he even missed a breakaway layup. On the other end, LeBron was eating him up whenever Harden tried to guard him … Harden is struggling so much that — you may want to sit down for this — shaving his beard before Game 5 could be a good idea to give him a fresh start … The conspiracy theorists in all of us saw the sky-high TV ratings for the first three games and figured David Stern would slap Jim Rome‘s wife if it meant stretching this series out to seven games — which meant OKC should’ve been getting a TON of calls in Game 4 to help them tie the series. But then a funny thing happened: Almost every call that could’ve went either way went Miami’s way. Durant (28 pts, 9-19 FG) wound up in foul trouble, and Floppin’ Ass Derek Fisher even got called for an offensive foul one time when he ran over LeBron … Of course Fisher’s lone FGA happened when Westbrook was cooking in the fourth quarter — Fish broke up the one-man show by wildly driving the lane and getting swatted. Fisher is basketball bipolar: He shows balls of steel by hitting all those clutch playoff shots, then acts sack-less with all the flopping. He’s such a great teammate that Kobe actually listens to him and he’s earned five championship rings, but then you’d hate playing with him because he selfishly jacks up shots at the worst times … If Westbrook was channeling young D-Wade and LeBron was evoking memories of Oscar, then Nick Collison played the first quarter like he’d slipped on a pair of magical game-worn Tom Chambers shoes. Collison had a nice follow dunk, then he beat Chris Bosh off the dribble from the top of the key and scored on him. And then Collison woke up and never really made a peep the rest of the game … ABC was seriously slacking on the mute button. One time D-Wade (25 pts) missed a free throw and yelled “Ahh sh*t!” just before the broadcast went silent for a second. Then when LeBron was on the sidelines in the fourth quarter nursing that injury, he let out another curse that wasn’t caught in time. Finally, after the game the camera was following Wade through the tunnel and he was heard calling out “Mario Muthaf***ing Chalmers!” Good thing they didn’t go into OKC’s locker room after the game; it would’ve sounded like an angry Bernie Mac outtake … We’re out like The Beard …

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