The Miami Heat are hoping to swing the momentum its way during Sunday night's Game 2. They're expecting a wild swing in temperature, too.
Head coach Erik Spoelstra intimated as much, according to Yahoo Sports' Marc J. Spears:
Temperatures within the AT&T Center surpassed 90 degrees on Thursday when the San Antonio Spurs bested Miami by a final score of 110-95 in Game 1. The unusual atmosphere was caused by a malfunctioning air conditioning system that remained broken throughout the contest.
Though no one within the Spurs organization was responsible for the debacle, team officials confronted the issue during the game, according to Sports Illustrated's Ben Golliver:
At the end of the third quarter, the public address announcer acknowledged the AC malfunction, drawing whistles and boos from the crowd. The Spurs also confirmed the problem in a press statement.
'An electrical failure for the power that runs the AC system in the AT&T Center has occurred,' the statement read. 'We are continuing to work on resolving the problem. We apologize for any inconvenience.'
Spoelstra's expectations for Game 2 are more or less in line with reality. The air conditioning has indeed been repaired, according to a statement released by Spurs Sports & Entertainment (who operates the arena), per NBC Sports' Kurt Helin:
The electrical failure that caused the AC system outage during Game 1 of the NBA Finals has been repaired. The AC system has been tested, is fully operational and will continue to be monitored. The upcoming events at the AT&T Center, including the Ramon Santos concert tonight (Friday), the Stars game on Saturday and Game 2 of the NBA Finals, will go on as scheduled. We apologize for the conditions in the arena during last night’s game.
It will forever remain unknown just how much the temperature and James' eventual absence factored into the win. Spurs fans will maintain that their team would have won either way on account of a hot shooting streak late in the game. Miami fans believe James would have made a difference.
To objective observers, reality probably lies somewhere in between.
Game 2 will be played in a fully air conditioned arena on Sunday night at 8:00 p.m. ET. You can catch the action on ABC.