This season's Miami Heat is one of the most exciting stories in the history of this league — it's a comeback team against all odds on a team and individual level. 90 years to the end of a game in which it was beaten throughout the second half, Duncan Robinson scored a second consecutive three-pointer and the advantage drops to 9. A slim chance, but this is a team whose gasoline is the slim chance, but instead of madness in the stands, the arena is half empty. The audience began to leave as early as 6-7 minutes to the end. The NBA Finals are truly one of the best experiences the sport has to offer in terms of sports level as well as media and image wrapping. But let's put it at face value: this is a crowd that degrades the event and its huge group.
Miami prepares for Game 3 of the NBA Finals
Although sometimes a spoiled and satiated audience and just plain bad can also be comic. At 72:91 to Denver, when the public address system operators lost all hope of awakening the crowd, which only groaned and groaned after each short hook shot by Jokic, they desperately pulled out their doomsday weapon. Until that moment, some Argentine footballer had been ignored joining a local team - perhaps because they wanted to preserve the dignity of Neymar, who came equipped with a Jimmy Butler shirt to cheer on his friend. "Welcome Lionel Messi," the caption appeared on the big screen. But even the announcement of the historic Messi received nothing more than polite applause.
Nikola Jokic clearly suffers from some statistical anxiety. A well-known phenomenon for pedagogues in the field of mathematics study. At the end of each game, he is attacked with numbers – tonight he became the first player in history to play 30-20-10 in the Finals and is part of the only duo to record a triple-double with 30 points. And his response is a kind of "Why are we talking about statistics when you can play basketball?"
Neymar. Came to support Butler, Photo: AFP
But if there's one statistic that should please the Nuggets, it's a very weak statistic that went 5-of-18 for three-pointers. A given of theirs and not of the loser. Denver didn't catch a day offensively. Denver didn't play error-free basketball, but Miami guarded the ball much better – 4:13 to Miami in turnovers. Denver just dominated every matchup. Jokic, with his sometimes maligned guarding ability, limited Bam Adebayo to 7 of 21. Michael Malone's demand for a 48-minute effort from his players fell on a sympathetic ear.
Christian Braun scores 15 points (7-8 FG) off the bench as Denver wins Game 3!
DEN/MIA Game 4: Friday, 8:30 PM ET on ABC pic.twitter.com/UrY4Al1Znc
— NBA (@NBA) June 8, 2023
"Christian Brown won the game for us," Jokic chooses to praise Denver's rookie at the end. The Murray-Jokic display will be talked about for generations, but it's the whipped cream. Brown was the X-factor with tremendous defensive energy and 78% from the field for 15 points. Brown is a kind of black swan. We're used to D&D players in the league – those who combine defensive energy with the ability to shoot the open three. But Brown rarely throws the three—neither in the season nor in the playoffs—and instead attacks the ring at surprising angles and moments.
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I ask him at the end about the Fergusonian statement of "the young people who are not afraid." He talks about the confidence his teammates give him, but also in the equation of experience versus fears — veteran and experienced players often struggle with final anxieties — Brown represents something else. Three times high school champion, once collegiate champion and on the verge of an NBA championship just before his 22nd birthday. And whoever gives the highlight game of his very young career when his team needs an away win in the NBA Finals.
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