5 Categories of Importance in Heat vs. Thunder NBA Finals: Oscars Edition
It's Oscar night in Oklahoma City, and the buzz of anticipation surrounding this evening's festivities and the pending arrival of LeBrevin Durames has momentarily been overtaken by a frenzied panic to find Ricky Gervais.
According to early reports, Joan Rivers is said to be on standby as a last minute replacement for Gervais, although sources within the bullpen have let it be known her last collagen shot was clocked at an underwhelming 45 MPH.
In other news, due to budget cuts and the financial backlash resulting from the NBA's abbreviated lockout, tonight's red carpet will be replaced with a sea of pants and shirts sewn together from the wardrobes of Russel Westbrook and Dwyane Wade.
Last but not least, the awards committee announced late last night that the statues being handed out were shaped in the likeness of ESPN analyst Jon Barry, as its handle protrudes from the backside of the lower torso, similar to the appearance of a tripod.
Having said that, with so many titles at stake in these NBA Finals, here is the list of categories (and accompanying nominees) ascending from least to greatest importance.
Best Flopper in a Motion Picture Drama
Shane Battier (F): Miami Heat
Derek Fisher (G): Oklahoma City Thunder
Nick Collison (F): Oklahoma City Thunder
Udonis Haslem (F): Miami Heat
Early Favorite: Tie between Battier and Collison
Commentary: Derek Fisher's bread and butter at this stage of his career is his clutch shooting, while Udonis has cooled off on taking charges as the playoffs have progressed. Battier and Collison, meanwhile, have perfected their form to an art, arguably eliciting calls for contact before they even get hit. Look for this to be a tightly contested matchup.
Best Offensive Liability on a Championship Contender
Brett Deering/Getty Images
Joel Anthony (C): Miami Heat
Kendrick Perkins (C): Oklahoma City Thunder
Ronny Turiaf (C): Miami Heat
Serge Ibaka (F): Oklahoma City Thunder
Dwyane Wade first-half (G): Miami Heat
Early Favorite: Dwyane Wade.
Commentary: Truthfully, Serge Ibaka should win this award because Dwyane Wade has no business really being on this list. However, it can be said that the Miami Heat went seven games against the Celtics mainly because of Wade's struggles in the first half of games.
Against the Thunder, this series will be over real quick if Wade hands in similar production. He probably knows it too, thereby making him the favorite to have a better than expected offensive stat line in this series.
Best Wingman in the NBA
Russel Westbrook (G): Oklahoma City Thunder
Dwyane Wade (G): Miami Heat
James Harden (G): Oklahoma City Thunder
Chris Bosh (F): Miami Heat
Early Favorite: Russell Westbrook
Commentary: Although Chris Bosh is coming off a terrific Game 7 and looks to be well-rested, he will be guarded by D.P.O.Y candidate Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins, making it tough on him to dominate. Questions about Wade's health have been raised as he struggled in the first half throughout the Eastern Conference Finals and in the early part of the second round against the Pacers. Westbrook likes to shoot a lot and he will be starting, so one would guess he'll have an edge over Harden.
Best Player in the NBA
LeBron James (F): Miami Heat
Kevin Durant (F): Oklahoma City Thunder
Early Favorite: LeBron James
Commentary: From a statistical standpoint, LeBron James is the superior player. Meanwhile, the Miami Heat will need LeBron James to be the best player on the court for them to have any chance of defeating the Thunder. Durant will have his scoring moments, but James' ability to get his teammates involved should ultimately make the difference.
Best New Rivalry or Dynasty in the NBA
Miami Heat vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
Oklahoma City Thunder
Early Favorite: Miami Heat vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
Commentary: This category needs some explanation. Basically, depending on how this series goes, the NBA will come away with the newest rivalry of this era or the newest dynasty of this era. Now, OKC may be the favorites coming into this series, but no one is expecting this series to go less than six games. If it does, the NBA will arguably have a new dynasty. If it doesn't, goodbye Lakers vs. Celtics and hello Heat vs. Thunder.
Heat in seven