EFSC Basketball Programs Offer NBA Predictions
By Mark DeCotis, Eastern Florida State College // June 5, 2014
NBA Finals begin tonight
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Second verse same as the first as the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs meet in the NBA Finals for the second straight season beginning tonight.
The Heat, appearing in The Finals for the fourth straight year, are seeking their third consecutive championship and fourth overall dating back to 2006. Miami beat the Spurs in seven games last season.
The Spurs have won four championships: 1999, 2003, 2005 and 2007 and will be seeking the proverbial “one for the thumb.”
What will the outcome be? Eastern Florida State College basketball aficionados make their predictions:
Former Eastern Florida forward Julian Adams who is bound for Ava Maria University this fall:
“I predict the Spurs in seven games. They are playing their best basketball at home and they have a team full of experience. They let one slip away last year in game six. I think they have the Heat’s number this year.”
Women’s assistant coach Olivia Atwell:
“Spurs in seven games. I think the big three for the Spurs – Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili – will be better than the big three – LeBron James, Chris Bosch and Dwyane Wade – for the Heat.”
Women’s assistant coach Barry Dreier:
“The Heat in seven because of Tony Parker’s ankle (injury). I’m pulling for the Spurs all the way.”
Women’s head coach Jim Grimes:
“Spurs in seven. This may be more of a want than what I think, but I am counting on (Spurs head coach Greg) Popovich’s attention to detail, and the Spurs’ depth and experience to be the difference in a very close series.”
Athletic assistant Tom Howard: San Antonio in six games. “The Spurs have a better coach in Greg Popovich. He’s a brilliant coach who knows how to utilize people.”
Men’s center Kyle Meyer: Spurs in seven. His reasoning:
• The series starts in San Antonio.
• The Spurs have much greater tendency to move the ball and create better shots (500+ more passes in the half court compared to Oklahoma City Thunder).
• The Heat have a much weaker bench.
• The Spurs have a stronger desire for a ring after coming so close last year and facing the same opponent .
• LeBron James has trouble scoring 25+ against San Antonio (not to say he can’t and won’t, but needs a much greater effort).
• A healthy Tim Duncan and Tiago Splitter create huge matchup problems down low for the Heat who tend to allow more buckets in the paint.
• Dwyane Wade’s sustainability and durability will be questioned in this series with a combination of Danny Green and Patty Mills who I suspect will guard him.
• The Heat have a much tougher time winning on the road compared to the Spurs.
Men’s assistant coach Chris Ronan:
“Miami Heat in six games. The star power of Chris Bosch, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James will be too much for the Spurs.”
Men’s head coach Jeremy Shulman:
“I think the Heat will beat the Spurs even though I’m for the Spurs. LeBron James is the best on the planet, Dwyane Wade is healthy and playing great, Chris Bosh spreads the floor and draws the Spurs bigs away from the hoop. It’s just tough to beat the Heat.”