Wow! What a first game of the NBA Finals. The Stack is here to talk all about it as well as some of the other big stories and headlines from the sports world yesterday so let's get right to it and see what made "the stack" for today, Wednesday, June 13:
1. Thunder thunder back to take 1-0 NBA Finals series lead
What an exciting game one last night to start the NBA Finals. The Miami Heat came out and were shooting lights out. They went five for six from three point range in the first quarter and Shane Battier was absolutely terrific hitting three 3's himself. The Oklahoma City Thunder seemed a little too amped up at the start of the game. They couldn't get baskets to fall and they were struggling to get back into their defense in transition. Kevin Durant was keeping them in the game scoring ten quick points. But even their free throws weren't falling. And in the second quarter, it seemed like they could never climb closer than seven or nine points. LeBron James was very good in the first half, though he was struggling with his jump shot. The two players who were carrying the Heat were Battier and Mario Chalmers. You had to think at some point the Thunder would make a run in the second half and get back in the game.
Well they did...right away as a matter of fact. The Thunder hit a couple of big shots right away to get the crowd, (the Thunder have the best fans in the NBA bar none) roaring in the arena. The Heat took a time out and for a while, the Thunder had multiple chances to take the lead, but could never quite get there. I was starting to wonder if the miss chances were going to come back and haunt them. In a word...no. Once the fourth quarter started, with the Thunder leading 74-73, Durant and Russell Westbrook took over. Durant scored 17 points alone in the fourth. To show the dominance of Durant and Westrbook, consider the fact that they scored 41 combined points in the second half. The entire Heat team scored just 40 points. The Thunder won 105-94 and have a 1-0 series lead. And unfortunately, people will blame LeBron for this loss. But more of the blame needs to go to Dwayne Wade. Where was he last night? He couldn't hit a shot to save his life. He looked lost on defense. He had a terrible game. Yes LeBron shares the blame, because he didn't do much in the second half. Sure he finished with 30 points, but when the Heat needed him to carry the load in the second half, he couldn't do it. They got the support they needed from guys like Battier and Chalmers. They need more out of Chris Bosh, but he needs to be in the starting lineup and not come off the bench in game two. The thing that should scare the Heat is that James Harden only had five points coming off the bench for the Thunder, and the Thunder were still able to rally back and win. Harden will not have that poor of a game the rest of this series. It's way to early to say that the Heat are in trouble, but I expect the Thunder to come out and play better in game two. Which means the Heat will have to play much better. Game two is Thursday night at 9:00 PM ET.
2. Euro Cup action from Tuesday
Group A was back in action Tuesday in the Euro Cup and there were two exciting matches. The Czech Republic scored two goals in the first six minutes and hung on to beat Greece 2-1. In the other match, bitter rivals Russia and Poland battled to a 1-1 draw. Poland was trailing 1-0 in the second half, but got a big goal to play to the draw. The way things stand in Group A, Russia is sitting pretty good with four points, leading the group.
1. Russia- 4 pts.
2. Czech Republic- 3 pts.
3. Poland- 2 pts.
4. Greece- 1 pt.
Group B resumes play today. And there are a couple of really good matches.
Denmark vs. Portugal 11:45 AM ET
Germany vs. Netherlands 2:30 PM ET
The Germany-Netherlands is going to be awesome. The Netherlands desperately need to win after they were upset by Denmark. It is going to be a very interesting game.
3. Philadelphia Eagles 2012-13 NFL schedule highlights
Is this a make or break year for the Phidelphia Eagles and head coach Andy Reid? The "dream team" failed miserably last year. Michael Vick must play better. The defense must play better. No denying how talented they are, but if they can't cut down on the turnovers and overall discipline they'll suffer a similar fate this year. Their full schedule can be found here. Now here are some interesting notes on the upcoming Eagles schedule:
- Vick faces his former team, the Atlanta Falcons, week 8 in Philadelphia.
- The Eagles face in-state rival Pittsburgh this year in Pittsburgh week 5.
- The Eagles are once again ready for primetime. They have five appearances this year. Vs. New York Giants week 4 8:20 PM ET NBC, @ New Orleans week 9 8:30 PM ET ESPN, Vs. Carolina week 12 8:30 PM ET ESPN, @ Dallas week 13 8:20 PM ET NBC and Vs. Cincinnati week 15 8:20 PM ET NFL Network.
- The Eagles open up with their first two games against AFC north opponents @ Cleveland week 1 and vs. Baltimore week 2.
Thursday's team: Pittsburgh Steelers
Coming up Thursday: Reaction to biggest sports stories and headlines from Wednesday
Comments and suggestions on what to write about are always welcomed and appreciated.