Thursday, December 23, 2010

A temperature Heat reading

Ever since LeBron James announced that he would be "taking his talents to South Beach" back in July, the annual Christmas Day Lakers versus Heat match-up has been all the more intriguing.
All those Nike commercials from last year, where LeBron would bench "2010" in the gym in front of an amused, cartoon-sized Kobe Bryant will somewhat tell the tale of what will play out for the Heat this year.

The Heat have a 1-8 record against teams with winning records, even though they have won 12 of their past 13 games. The 2006 Heat were the same way, but like Kobe said in an interview with ESPN's Michael Wilbon, it doesn't matter.

Well it does, for the team that wins. If the Heat hope to match up against the strong Western conference in a possible Finals preview, this Christmas Day game will be a measuring stick. Bryant is fresh off a frustrating loss against the Milwaukee Bucks, in which he was ejected late in the fourth quarter.

If the Heat look to stand a chance, on the road, against a very good Lakers team, their defense will have to frustrate Bryant. The three-headed monster at center of Erik Dampier, big Z and Joel Anthony will also have to slow down Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum.

It is just a game, but one of epic proportions for the NBA landscape.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

LeBron's return to Cleveland

The time has come.

LeBron James will return to the Quicken Loans Arena Thursday to face his hometown team, the Cleveland Cavaliers. There has been so much talk over what will happen that in actuality, no one really knows.

Will a fight ensue? Will LeBron be safe? Will there be vulgar language? These questions and more have been posed by reporters over the last day and a half.

Personally, I believe LeBron will have his breakout game tomorrow. The intensity that will take place in that building tomorrow will be unprecedented. It won't be the biggest game in James' career (by default because Game 7 of the 2007 East Finals was quite a feat) but by far it will be the most memorable. This is LeBron's chance to show he is still King James, a two time NBA MVP, seven time all star, I could go on.

Anyway, that is all. I'll be watching as well millions of other NBA fans.

Without trying to sound promotional or corny, it begins, LeBron vs. Cleveland, Thursday, 8PM, on TNT.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Heat set to face undefeated Hornets

A heat wave looks to stir up some Hornets in New Orleans tomorrow.

The Miami Heat take the NBA's number one defense and a four game winning streak into New Orleans tomorrow to square off with the undefeated New Orleans Hornets (3-0). Chris Paul and company look to pose a (serious) threat and possibly add another 'L' in the loss column for the Heat.

Miami's Thrice of Dwayne Wade, Lebron James and Chris Bosh have been averaging 55.8 points per game and that's playing only three quarters. However, Miami will need to have everyone play normal minutes to pull off a win in the Big Easy tomorrow.

In other news, Lebron James missed practice with a shin bruise, he will start tomorrow though. Dwayne Wade still leads the Heat in scoring, barely, over James.

Monday, October 25, 2010

LeBron "Rise"

He has responded.

Lebron James' new Nike commercial answers the critics while posing the question, "What do you want me to do?"

After watching ESPN's Pardon the Interruption this afternoon, I googled the commercial and thought it was portrayed brilliantly.

Lebron has been wising up to the media all off-season, but tomorrow, he can further put his critics at rest with a star performance. The commercial features the past, along with some new Miami wrinkles in the present as well as the future.

Some scenes take shots at MJ and Barkley, but why not retaliate on a national level? There will always be haters that will remember Lebron's decision, but "what do you want me to do?"

Watch the video above.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The games are bigger...the heart beats faster..the Heat is on!

That title above used to be the Heat's playoff slogan during the 2008-2009 season.

Tickets then were so easy to come by that people were giving them away. To get a seat at the "Heat's house" today, you'll have to give up a arm, leg, used car, take your pick.

I'm guilty as well, I should have listened to Riley and paid the $500 to be a Heat season ticket holder pre Miami Thrice, now a "Heat fan" should look to spend $300 a seat, in section 300, not even for a good game.

Forgot the Dec. 2 game against Cleveland, the chances of getting tickets to that game or Christmas Day against the Lakers are... well there is no chance.

Anyway, to divert back from my rant. The Miami Heat season starts Tuesday. Wade will play, but with the loss of Mike Miller until Jan. with a thumb injury, the Heat look to incorporate newly signed veteran Jerry Stackhouse and Eddie House should see some more touches as well.

What about Lebron?

The King's reign in Miami will begin Oct. 29th, against the Orlando Magic. The Heat don't have to worry about a cancellation this game, the Florida Panthers don't share an arena with the Heat.

Personally, I cannot wait to see what happens this season. I'll be watching many games from home, but when the opening jump ball goes up, this 82 game season will be the best ever.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Miami Heat Pre-Season Reaction

Wow, we do not even need Dwayne Wade.

That was my reaction when I watched Wade leave the court with a strained hamstring in the first quarter of yesterday's pre-season opener against the Detroit Pistons.

Wade played about three minutes before straining his hamstring after running after Pistons guard Richard Hamilton along the baseline. After some time on the bench, Wade was ushered to the locker room. (Don't worry folks, Wade will be back in time for the season opener.)

The starting line-up featured Arroyo and Anthony along with the unanimous tandem of Wade, James and Bosh before things were shaken up after the injury.

That gave the new number 6, King James, a chance to showcase his skills. Taking defenders off the dribble, he and Bosh combined for 38 points in a Motor City beat-down.

Coach Erik Spolestra was able to use a series of different line-ups with Wade out, but the end result is hopefully one we will see all season, a victory.

The Heat play again on Friday and the long awaited season opener will be nationally televised on TNT on October 26th. It should make for an interesting rivalry, Boston's big three and Shaq versus Miami Thrice and former Celtic guard Eddie House.

It is going to be a wild ride this season, when was the last time a pre-season game was near capacity?

Monday, September 20, 2010

Miami Heat Season Outlook- Week of September 20th

The Miami Heat's season opener is just a little over a month away and there is still plenty of buzz to the dismay of sports reporters about none other than Lebron James.

Lebron just cannot seem to get himself out of the spotlight. This starts nine days ago when he says he wanted Ohio State to beat the Miami Hurricanes so I can understand why he is not liked in any location outside of Miami. The homeless in the streets of Miami don't even want his jerseys but then again that gesture from the Clevelanders was pretty disrespectful to start with.

In other news, the Heat want to sign Erik Dampier. At this point, it doesn't really matter who they sign as he will most likely only play after the Heat are up by 40 in garbage time. A nice pickup nonetheless, Dampier is a strong inside presence that will free up minutes from Haslem and Big Z. It could also be a nice insurance policy for the injury prone Z.

Miami Thrice starts October 26th and I cannot wait!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Big Blue: Offense Preview

I bleed blue. Ever since I was a kid, the New York Giants were my life every Sunday during football season. The 2007 Super Bowl season was the highest of highs I have ever experienced, I will never forget that adventure. But last year was the lowest of lows. The defense was embarassing. It was really hard to watch. There is hope though. With a lot of players coming back from injuries and some new Free Agents, the Giants seem to be on the blueprint to sucess for this year. Let's break it down and look at what to expect at each position next year:

Quarterback: Going into his sixth year, Eli Manning had his best statistical season as a pro. One of the few bright spots on offense last year, Manning proved the passing game was not an issue and managed his way into the Top-10 QB conversation. This year though, the team is hoping to get more out of the running game, but the team hinges on Eli's playmaking ability.

Runningback: Last year, the running game between Brandon Jacobs and Ahmad Bradshaw fell in comparision to the top rushing attack in 2008. Bradshaw to his credit played the whole year with two broken feet and is one of the hardest-working RB's in football and is greatly underrated. I am expecting a strong year out of him now that he is fully healthy. Jacobs on the other hand needs to get back to his bulldozering ways. He is not a nimble back who can wait behind the line, he needs to run people over. If he can do this, I see no reason as to why this won't be a top 5 running team.

Offensive Line: The unit of David Diehl, Rich Seubert, Shaun O'Hara, Chris Snee, and Kareem McKenzie has been one of the most cohesive units over the last five years. The only major injury concern is McKenzie's back problems the last few years, but the Giants drafted Uconn Tackle William Betty to step up in place of one of the tackles in the next few years. The O-Line needs to strengthen its pass-protection and give Eli more time in the pocket. Eli does not do well when he is pressured and the line must protect him. With most of these guys in the primes of their careers, they should have a solid season again.

Tight End: If you watched Kevin Boss last year, you wonder how is this guy still alive? He took more bone-crushing hits to the head in one season then I've ever seen in my life. This guy is tough as nails but the concussions might be a concern. He is an excellent pass-catching TE and runs very crisp routes. He needs to work on his blocking because Giants TE's are essential for blocking in the running game. 2nd year player Travis Beckum hopefully will contribute some more this season. I didn't get to see much out of him last year but he seems to have plenty of potential.

Wide Receiver: I saved the best for last because this position has me psyched. This time last season I along with most Giants fans had no idea what to expect from this group. Well, flash forward to this year and they exceeded all expectations. Steve Smith became the next Wes Welker. Hakeem Nicks made you feel he could score a Touchdown every time he touches the ball, and Mario Manningham made every catch a breath-taking highlight catch. All three receivers share one very important trait that the Giants haven't had in a long time: yards after catch. Before with Toomer and Plaxico they would just catch the ball and get hit. But now with these guys, a touchdown can happen at any time. I really am excited with this unit and expect big things from them. Hakeem Nicks will be a star in this league. The only negative was the preseason injury to Domenik Hixon. He was a great returner for the team and was great in 4 Wr Sets. It's possible Manningham or perhaps Sinorice Moss will play returning duties.

Offensive Outlook: The most important thing this team needs to do is re-establish the running game. Last year the team did not wear down the opponents' defenses in typical Giant fashion. With a re-established running game comes the use of playaction with a deadly group of receivers. If the O-line and running game go back to the ways they were, this offense will be deadly next year and for a long time.

Miami Heat Season Outlook

Miami Thrice starts Oct. 26th.

The Miami Heat are the envy of the entire NBA with the signings of Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh, and Lebron James.

Miami returns to "Leaveland" on December 2nd, in what will be a hotly contested affair for King James.

In fact, no nationally televised game on the Heat's schedule is easy. They play Boston to start the season, followed by Orlando on Oct. 29th. The classic Christmas day Heat vs. Lakers rivalry will also be renewed, in what looks to be a NBA Finals preview.

While ABC's Stan Van Gundy has said that the Heat will break the single-season win record of 72 games, the Heat still have alot of work to do.

The Heat don't have a real answer at center or point guard, despite the signings of Eddie House and Zydrunas Ilgauskas. While the starting five looks to be as dominant as it can be, questions arise about the Heat's bench.

Since most of the money went to the trifecta, the rest of the Heat team have been filled in with draft picks and players who have signed for the veteran minimum.

Although, the Heat will definitely be winners, it is just a matter of when.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Have Faith in the Sox-But What Else is New?

With the Sox 6.5 games out of first as of today, the Sox will need a boost to get back into contention for a playoff spot in baseball’s toughest division, the American League East. The critics jumped all over the Sox for their lack of action at the trade deadline, calling it a “buzzkill” and predicting the Sox will go home early this year. But what these pundits haven’t analyzed is the potential already in the roster.

Even with Josh Beckett on the DL for two months, catcher Jason Varitex and second baseman Dustin Pedroia out for a broken foot, third baseman Mike Lowell out with hip problems and outfielder Jacoby Ellsburry on the DL for rib complications, the Sox have managed to pull off a .571 winning percentage. With so many usual starters injured, the Sox are beginning to look a little like the Mets, but only on the surface. With Josh Beckett’s return amounting into a 7-3 win on July 23rd, the Sox swept the Angels to finish off the trip. Beckett is the man that brings the Sox rotation from solid to feared. As for the rest of the starters, Clay Buchholz has been holding his own in Beckett’s absence with an 11-5 record. His ERA (Earned Run Average) is 2.68, 2nd best in the AL. John Lackey has been solid in his starts following the break, and Jon Lester is 2nd in the AL for strikeouts, with 150.

As for the rest of the defense, Pedroia is beginning to run and field after a scan showing significant healing in his foot. Varitek is now off his crutches and beginning activity again as well. Ellsbury will be playing a few more games in Triple-A Pawtuckett on his rehab assignment, and should be back in the Sox lineup soon. I can’t wait to see Ellsbury back in the field, reminding the rest of the league that the Sox still have promise and excitement in this young player, with speed not often found in the AL.

Besides the re-emerging injured players, several Sox rookies could bring that missing bit of energy needed to push the Sox ahead. Outfielder Ryan Kalish made his debut on Saturday against Detroit, with an RBI and another single. Kalish, who batted .294 in the minors this year, should be a significant improvement from Jeremy Hermida. Remember Daniel Nava, the 2nd player ever to hit a grand slam with his first pitch in the majors? He’s been called back up to replace Mike Cameron, and hopefully he has a few more homers in store.

With all of this re-emerging potential for the Sox, the AL East could see a third powerhouse fighting for 1st. Starting Friday, the Sox will play the Yanks and the Rays-the two teams ahead of them-back to back. Before the end of the season, the Sox will have 16 chances against these two teams, including a home series against the Yanks to end the season, well, at least the regular season. The Sox certainly have the time to reassert themselves for a heated Wild Card or Division race. They may be down, but they’re not out.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Rolling Around

Ever since I was three I have spent my Saturday mornings at Gold Coast Roller Rink I guess you could say I am kind of religious about it. Skating may seem to some people something you might do on a beach boardwalk or for your 10th birthday party, but to me it means a lot more then that. I found myself not being able to commit to things when I was a kid I tried gymnastics, dance, soccer, and swimming. For some reason I would become bored and restless. Skating was different it was one of the first sports I learned and I was just naturally good at it, so for as long as I can remember I have been rolling. There is nothing that makes me feel better then putting on a pair of skates and sliding across the floor to the beat of the music. Corny as it may sound it is something I love to do and feel that if I don't get to do it my week is incomplete.

With a little practice you too could learn how to skate! For many years I have brought my friends in attempts to get them to skate with me, sometimes it was successful other times well they need a little more practice. Over the years skating has allowed me to make long lasting friendships each weekend I am surrounded by others who enjoy doing the same thing that I do.

Nothing puts a bigger smile on my face when I see someone new learning how to skate. Being able to pass on what I have learned and seeing them develop makes me feel as if I have done my job. Whether you have never tried to skate or are an Olympic figure skater it is sport that can be done both inside and outside, all it takes is a little practice and you will be on your way in no time.

Special thanks to Amelia Witcoski from Nova High for being my model!


I have absolutely no experience in blogging and have never considered my lack of experience a problem as I never expected I would be writing (or at least attempting to write) one myself. If you, like me, has always pictured blogging as an excuse for people with lots of free time (and Internet access) to vent about their lives, please note that it is NOT what I’m doing at the moment, but merely completing a formality. First of all, I cannot bring myself to understand the origin of the word “blog” itself, such a weird word; I have to admit it is kind of entertaining to pronounce, but it pales in comparison to others such as “shuttlecock.” --> hahaha! have to love badminton.

Before starting on my actual topic, I will give you some information about myself (as you obviously will not care to click on the “about me” button --> why should you anyway???) Well, I was born in Argentina (lived there for 7 years), then moved to France for five years (French pastries are excellent -- no matter what the Publix “Bakery” has to say about it), I arrived in Florida about 3 years ago and presently reside in the monotonous bundle of houses that calls itself Weston.

Now, on to my topic: tennis! ---please contain your excitement-- I have practiced tennis since my seventh year when my parents asked me one day what sport interested me. For some obscure, mysterious, reason I replied “tennis” and tennis it has been ever since.

What I admire about this sport is the finesse and skill it requires, the gentleman-like attitude of its players, and its great versatility. I am particularly fond as

well of the game’s mental side, wherein players perform a most delicate battle, and one almost as important as that visibly taking place on the court (the competitive [and malicious] sides of my personality indeed thrive when opponents show any sign of mental impotence).

I practice at Weston’s Midtown Athletic Club (a most peculiar, functional, and beautiful place overflowing with South Americans such as myself) and I am a member of my school’s tennis team.

Currently, I attend Midtown’s summer camp and confess I have never felt so inferior until now, playing opposite some truly talented players. For example, today, I necessitated many efforts to defeat a recently turned twelve, short little girl (whom I sympathized with, however, because of her Argentinean nationality).

Now, on to professional tennis!!! --> tennis which people actually care about)

I support an Argentinean player named Juan Martin del Potro, who got to number 5 in the world and won last year’s US Open. Given my luck however, del Potro has not been able to play since January because of a wrist injury --> bummer.... Let’s see, I like Federer’s game (who wouldn’t) and despise Nadal’s (simply because he sometimes beats Federer). In the women’s side, I am fond of Justine Henin and Maria Sharapova and can tolerate Kim Clijsters and Jelena Jankovic.

Last March-slash-April, I was involved in the Sony Ericsson Open (5th largest tournament in the world). And no, I didn’t play there -sigh- but was a b

allperson!! Even though my pride was initially injured by the notion of picking up balls for someone else (can’t they just do it themselves, really ?!?!?) I soon learned to enjoy the experience. First of all, I am a tennis fan and rejoiced at being just a couple of feet away from famous players and to observe their talent from such a close stand. As a student in need of service hours, I could not possibly neglect the 65 hours awarded by the tournament.

As simple as it may look, ballpersoning is certainly not an easy task: one must always be aware of all the balls’ location within the court and know how many are in the other ballpersons’ possession. Also, one cannot for a moment lose his focus: his safety being at stake (high-speed balls everywhere!!), along with his vanity (no one wants to make a fool of himself in fronts of millions of TV spectators worldwide).

Also, it must be taken in consideration that, when on the court, all players (excepting Zheng Jie, who is nice enough to say “thank you”) act like jerks whose entertainment it is to abuse ballpersons (I myself have received some threatening looks from Venus Williams when I didn’t give her a ball quickly enough). Overall, however, it is a very enjoyable experience, as ballpersons receive tons of free tickets, food coupons, a special I.D. and 300 dollars in the uniforms. One thing to watch out for: heat strokes.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Three Kings spur excitement in SoFla

They're here.

The proclaimed 'three kings'- Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and LeBron
James- have arrived in Miami.

In arguably the greatest sports monopoly of all time, the Miami Heat have
signed three of the best players in the league.

On the evening of Friday, July 9, the team officially introduced the
players to a crowd of over 10,000 at the American Airlines Arena.

Each player received an equal amount of support from the fans while the players, aside from Wade, flaunted their new jerseys.

James sported his new #6 while Bosh wore #1. Wade retained #3.

The players came out to the crowd and gave high fives and handshakes before a twenty minute question and answer session with Heat TV and radio personalities.

Perhaps the most prophetic statement of the night came from none other than James: "We're not gonna win 1, not 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 or 7 championships. "

Is James placing the world on his shoulders by claiming the Heat will win eight titles, or was this simply his retaliation to his former boss, Cleveland Cavaliers' owner Dan Gilbert? Gilbert hours earlier promised that the Cavs would win a championship before the 'selfish traitor', James himself.

James later said 'it will be too easy' for the self-proclaimed 'dynas-three' to win multiple rings.

Other highlights of the night included a display of Chris Bosh's mediocre spanish and a presentation of the keys to the city from Miami officials to the three superstars.

Friday, July 9, 2010