If this trend continues, role players will decide who swings the series one way or the other. If both Big Threes do manage to rise to the occasion, someone has to be the difference.
Here are the ultimate X-factors that will decide the outcome of the title.
3. Ray Allen
Allen is back.
The NBA’s all-time leader in three-point field goals made averaged just 7.1 points per game in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Indiana Pacers. He scored 13—and nailed a trio of threes—apiece in Game’s 1 and 2 of the NBA Finals. He’s shooting an absurd 67 percent from downtown versus the Spurs.
2. Danny Green
Green didn’t miss in Game 2. He shot 6-of-6 from the field, five of which were from three-point territory, and was the only reason the Spurs kept it close for as long as they did. He nailed four treys in Game 1 as well.
The former roster casualty proved defenses can’t double off of him on Sunday night. He’s just as vital to San Antonio’s defensive success as well. Opposing shooting guards only averaged a player efficiency rating of 12.7 against him this season, according to 82games.com (the league average is 15.0).
The Spurs weren’t able to cash in on Green’s money shooting in Game 2, but if he keeps it up, they’ll bounce back with a vengeance at the AT&T Center.
1. Mario Chalmers
More than any other player on either team, Chalmers’ performances in Games 1 and 2 were the difference in the series thus far.
He was a liability this past Thursday, shooting just 3-of-10 from the field and finishing with eight points. On Sunday, he exited AmericanAirlines Arena with a higher plus/minus ratio than James, plus-30, after recording 19 points, two assists and four rebounds.
If Chalmers continues his clutch play, Miami won’t lose.
David Daniels is a breaking news writer at Bleacher Report and news editor at Wade-O Radio.
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