Derrick Rose can block shots, too [video]

Watch as Rose turns the ball over, hustles back on defense and swats the shot away. Impressive.

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Derrick Rose throws down a sick two-handed dunk [video]

Did Erik Spoelstra go too far with “crying” comments?

Miami Heat’s head coach Erik Spoelstra argues a call on the sidelines during first quarter against the Chicago Bulls in NBA basketball action in Miami, Florida March 6, 2011. REUTERS/Hans Deryk (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

After the Heat’s 87-86 loss to the Bulls on Sunday, which marks their fourth straight defeat, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported the following:

In case you’re thinking that Spoelstra was misquoted, here’s the video of his post game presser.

On the surface, it appears that Spoelstra revealed that a couple of players were crying to illustrate his point that “it’s not a matter of want,” but there is some speculation that he was trying to call out his team for not being tough enough mentally.

I doubt he’s that nefarious. I suspect that he was trying to relay that his team is emotionally engaged and went too far with his words. In the video, you can see him pause before he mentioned the crying, almost wondering whether or not he should reveal that little tidbit.

So did he go too far? I’d say he did. A coach should have the trust of his players and vice versa. The locker room should be like Las Vegas — whatever happens there, stays there. He didn’t name names, but that might just make matters worse as every player on that roster might be guilty.

Guilty of what? It’s human to cry, right? Well, not so much. I cried once during my college basketball career and that was after my final game as a senior when we (surprisingly) lost a tournament game at home. The weight of the moment — that my days of competitive basketball player were over — reduced me to a blubbering idiot. I stuffed my face in a towel until I could get a hold of my emotions. It was an end of an era, my era, not some regular season loss. The Heat players shouldn’t be crying right now. They should be angry, and they should channel that anger into making sure that this four-game losing streak ends on Tuesday.

Maybe that was Spoelstra’s point. Or maybe he just lost whatever trust was left in that locker room.

Miami’s struggles continue

Miami Heat’s LeBron James (L) defends against the Chicago Bulls Derrick Rose during fourth quarter NBA basketball action in Miami, Florida March 6, 2011. REUTERS/Hans Deryk (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT BASKETBALL)

The Miami Heat are in the midst of an 11-game run against teams with winning records, and so far they’ve dropped the first four. On Sunday, they lost to the Bulls 87-86, even though LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh combined for 69 points on 53% shooting from the field.

Derrick Rose staked his claim to be the league’s MVP (once again) with a 27-point, five-assist performance, leading the Bulls to a 3-0 season sweep against the Heat. Carlos Boozer struggled to 12 points and 10 boards, but Luol Deng had a very nice game with 18 points.

I think Chicago has established itself as at least the second-best team in the East. The Bulls’ defense is outstanding thanks to the arrival of longtime Celtics’ assistant Tom Thibodeau, and offensively, everything runs through Rose. They look like they know what they’re doing while Miami sometimes look confused and out of sorts.

The win is big for Chicago because neither team wants to play the Knicks in the first round. New York will likely finish in the #6 spot, which means whoever finishes #3 has to face the dangerous combination of Carmelo Anthony, Amare Stoudemire and Chauncey Billups. The Bulls are now two games ahead of the Heat in the loss column and hold the tiebraker, so they’re likely to face the Sixers in the first round, not the Knicks.

If the Heat have to face the Knicks in the first round and the Bulls in the semis, forget about making the Finals, they may have a tough time even winning a series or two.

Was Chris Bosh’s 1-for-18 night the worst ever?

Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh stands on the court during the second against the Chicago Bulls quarter at the United Center in Chicago on January 15, 2011. The Bulls win 99-96. UPI/Brian Kersey

Chris Bosh missed 17 of his 18 shot attempts last night in the Heat’s 93-89 loss in Chicago. His shooting performance was so bad that it got me wondering — historically speaking, just how bad was it?

Basketball-Reference has a ‘play finder’ that allows users to look up individual games or seasons based on a series of criteria. It only goes back to the 1986-87 season, but for our purposes, that’s probably far enough. I asked the site to generate a list of players that attempted 15 or more shots but had two or fewer makes, and list those results in order of ascending field goal percentage. The resulting list shows the very worst shooting nights over the last 25 years.

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