“My game was a dance of gratitude.”-Dwyane Wade, ‘A Father First’.
Flashdance. Flashbang. Flashpoint. ‘Flashsplash’?
Call it what you will. But just call it like the 126-125 ballgame.
With one last dance and one last step. One last splash and one last point to beat the champion Golden State Warriors. Wade made it his world once again. One last time in his Floridaland last night.
With the clock running down like his career one, Miami Heat all-time greatest legend and All-Star Dwyane Wade dished off to Waiters who waited for his opportunity to Jackie Moon it right back to D-Wade, who had screen set himself some space to find a whole new open condominium spot downtown. As Dion dimed back the ‘L3gend’ whose number will soon be in the same rafters he shot for faked for what seemed like longer than those three dots on messenger when you’re waiting for a reply that began with, “we need to talk”, although it was only less than a mere second. And theeeeen with every Warrior throwing themselves at this South Beach superhero he couldn’t get a shot off as the commentator cried in unison. Regaining control of the ball after briefly, heartbreakingly losing it on the tips of his fingers, Wade was reaching Derek Fisher territory on the game clock. So like new Laker Point Rondo against his old Boston town, this guard instantly threw it up like it miracle of physics bounced off his hands, before it banked off the backboard and beat the buzzer like Kobe against the Heat back in the day, exactly ten years ago. And after Dwyane Wade ran away from his mobbing teammates like road teams do after doing this back to the locker room, who looked like they were trying to fight him with bear hugs and daps. He leapt on the scorers table and pounded the City Edition pink and blue neon on black logo of his Nike jersey to the AA, Miami crowd like Kobe. Before postgame thanking the Black Mamba for that decade ago, aged mentality.
But even Bryant never had it this defiant as the fine wine of Vino’s last measure was pouring away.
Father time hit primetime.
It must be the Iverson cornrows for the hottest guard in a flash since the answer, no question.
Every night this rocking chair, retirement tour Wade has soccer swapped his iconic Heat jersey-autographed and dedicated-with the souvenir strip of his favourite player from his opponents postgame. And last night against the reigning, superteam champs he had his pick of the legendary litter. Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant and DeMarcus Cousins. But it could be argued that all these Hall of Famers wanted their own piece of one who is red carpet rolled and ready for his place in the corridor of classic athletes in this association once all this high praise amens. Especially after Dwyane waded through the water of the Splash Brothers for the last drip of the timer that was all wet.
But tonight this Most Valuable jersey was worth keeping himself.
Flash off the glass, hows this for a flashback? Just think today marks a year ago that Wade taking his talents back to South Beach, homecoming hit another big, game winning shot in the all-white version of the City Edition, Miami Vice jerseys. Dedicating that shot and his shoes to Parkland victim Joaquin Oliver a week after his tragic death. For the family.
Basketball doesn’t get much more beautiful than this and legends don’t come much bigger than D.
And when it comes to this champion saving his best for one last dance. This may be one of his biggest moments in a year, let alone a lifetime career of them. Season after season.
Like fellow dynamite dynamo little man Isaiah Thomas of the Nuggets tweeted, “does Dwyane Wade have to retire?”
I mean really does he?
Because soon all this will be over in a flash and barring the playoff picture of the ultimate Cinderella story we don’t want this carriage to turn into a pumpkin just yet if there really is any time left on that clock.
Let us pray. As after last night’s off the pine prime of 25 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 blocks, 1 steal and one Hail Mary prayer answered that was all she wrote.
But in this swan song symphony by the numbers that almost seems scripted, we hope the Basketball God’s can bless us with one more note before the fat lady.
Because how sweet would that sound?
The King’s Garden Bites Forbidden Fruit In The Big Apple
Super Mario smashed ‘Bron.
On a Sunday afternoon in New York’s Madison Square Garden this St Patrick’s Day (side note: Nike need to bring back those great green Paddy’s Day NBA uniforms), the Lakers where in their East Coast equivalent big city to pay a visit to the Knickerbockers Mecca.
M.S.G. usually plays host to the greatest games from the G.O.A.T.’s over the generations out the service elevator. M.J. Kobe. And now L.A.L. legend to be L.B.J. against the N.Y.K. And LeBron James didn’t disappoint with a Kareem 33 points off devastating dunks off rampaging runs down the floor of the World’s Most Famous Arena like a raging bull. Shouting “AND ONE” on foul calls that even people with bleeding noses sitting up in the Gods could hear (and how about a couple plays before an equally as loud Caurso yelping for the lay-up as hilariously as his “what’s up man, I’m Alex” Ringer soundbite spoof? But 5 steals and 3 blocks to go with that many rebounds plus add that up “AND ONE” for 12 points in the game? Never send him down to the G again). That was until he took the final shot at the horn that blared in his face.
It’s been that kind of season for the King by royal appointment. Anthony Davis and potentially missing the playoffs and all that.
Heavy is the head in this Game of Thrones.
Like Jordan vs Kobe, the Knicks came away with the 124-123 win. And in the clutch, the King going for the games crown slipped as he ended up looking as good as one of his free throws. Driving the lane and taking it to the rack before being denied by the Knicks Mario Hezonja. Who with this big block became the Knicks new right hand man.
Off Broadway the King tried to Kong his way up the Empire State but this time the Bi-Planes normally swatted away shot him down.
‘Bron isn’t the only one who makes clutch blocks as big as a buzzer beating basket. Sometimes others hold it against him.
The Lakers 31-39 record is staring down elimination on the wrong side of .500. And with the game down the barrell L.B.J. went for the fadeaway like M.J. but couldn’t come up with ‘Space Jam’ too. As a matter of fact after a big game against the rotten 14-56 Knicks (on the free falling off the Chrysler wrong side of .500) where he also collected 8 rebounds almost on his way to a double/double, LeBron went fourth and colder in the final quarter than a text back from your significant other that just says “fine” when you ask if they’re ok and how their day was. With just four made baskets in the fourth period and the Lake Show missing their last six attempts it was all fat lady in Manhattan come the early evening afternoons end.
Right about now with most teams claiming their playoff berth, last year’s finalist and all the King’s men are just getting worse.
Even with a Garden state of mind in New York, New York, the King couldn’t keep his Empire going like Jussie Smollett.
Now there are only a few more notes before she sings again, but this time for the last time.
And that will be all she writes.
Time for Hollywood to hit the road and flip the script.
Every good movie ends with a twist.
The Lakers Couldn’t Randle The Truth
45 points, 11 rebounds and 6 assists.
I don’t mean to go on about this but DAMN!
A career high 45 points, 11 rebounds and 6 assists.
That’s MVP numbers right there.
And that’s just the kind of king season Julius Randle is having.
I mean right now the Lakers should probably trade their whole roster for this New Orleans Pelican and not fellow Kentucky ‘cat Anthony Davis (who was out last night in the 122-110 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers. Probably with “load management”). But I know who most Lakers fans would love to trade him for just to get this guy back.
But after bringing the King to Hollywood this Summer, Magic and the Lake Show didn’t think they needed to match the restricted hustle and muscle of Randle, who they are sorely missing in their palette dry paint this season. Despite pleading from the coaching staff, President Johnson and his Hollywood agent of assistance let both Randle and big man from downtown Brook Lopez (who is really affording more with the Bucks alongside…Pau Gasol of all underrated and underappreciated Laker greats) walk. All because the thought the former Heat talents of Michael Beasley was enough on a team of McGee, Stephenson and Rondo vets behind the young core that really are now turning into a meme.
Remember this is the same Magic man who traded All-Star…ALL STAR D’Angelo Russell because he didn’t think he was a leader. As the purple and gold Lakers faithful now have no sleep watching him in Brooklyn as he LEADS the Nets.
This is the same Magic man who after offering his whole future to the Pelicans for a free agent to be with desires to come here for nothing (at least before all this drama and disloyalty really showed him something), will soon surely watch the legendary likes of Lonzo, Ingram and maybe even Kuzma and Josh Hart walk when they’re free to go, after the way they have treated them. Because like it’s been shown before time and time again in Laker history (I would name every example, but then I would be naming every other player not called Kobe), there is no price on loyalty. But there is one to pay when you treat these teammates like a commodity and not the individual assets that they are.
There’s only so long someone treated as bait will let you off the hook.
Magic Johnson may be the greatest player of all-time in my opinion. In some ways even more gifted than the other M.J. He could effect a whole game and result without even scoring a basket. But now he’s really playing. Effecting the whole team and franchise whilst trying to make a point. Just how long will he last running this s### show. Remember how long he lasted when he was actually a coach?
And he wants to fire Walton?!
And soon the likes of Ball and his boys will end up All Stars like Randle will too. The Lakers need to make sure that they do this in purple before the Lake Show turns into the ‘Lame Show’. As once the gold goes out the crown, the Lakers legacy will be down to the hands of more than one legend.
A legend they could have had in Russell and Randle. With guys like they have now and the ones they also shouldn’t have let go. Like Jordan Clarkson, Larry Nance Jr., Thomas Bryant and Ivica Zubac. Paul George would have been a better fit with all these core guys. But the Lakers didn’t even really need him either. With all due respect to the King and the next chapter in storied Lakers/Celtics history the NBA tried to build, both these iconic franchises and their great expectations have imploded this season. Ones of win big now or else, manifest destiny over pure personnel development. The real rivalry of the future would have been the lottery pick rebuilds of the old young Laker and the history making right now Philadelphia 76ers. Look at the stakes they have now. There’s a reason they call it a process.
Still the Lakers loss is the flying Pelicans gain. And even if they do lose Davis they have a big future in the big man Julius. And if New Orleans do end up taking half the Laker team for him, maybe along with Julius Randle it will all end up being the Basketball Gods master plan in the karma (it all goes around like a basketball spinning on your finger) of showing the Lakers what they could have had and won in the end.
How many stars of future fame will Magic’s Hollywood let walk?
45 points, 11 rebounds and 6 assists.
Sometimes you can’t handle the truth Jack.
And that is Julius Randle.
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