CHICAGO — The excuses for why the Heat lost Game 1 are rolling in; LeBron James is reportedly battling a cold and has been so for the past three days.
Numerous outlets are reporting that James is battling a cold but from they way they are hounding the story you’d think he was on his death bed. Apparently the Bulls Game 1 scorching of the Heat wasn’t enough, the critics need something to point to as to why the Heat lost and why the Bulls didn’t win, they got lucky.
Rachel Nichols from ESPN said today that James has said his energy on the court has been affected by this cold and he is taking “Everything at Seven-Eleven”.
This is just the latest installment of the mass underestimation of this Bulls team. But the cold excuse is a lot more telling about the Heat and the media then it is about the Bulls. It’s not surprising that major sports outlets would be leaping on any sigh of relief excuse they can find after investing so much stock in the “new dynasty” before this season.
It’s also frustrating from a Chicago standpoint to have accomplished a huge feat in Game 1 and have it dismissed as basically a fluke since James has a cold. Chuck Swirsky said he visited 5 sports shows this morning, all of which are predicting the Heat tie the series in Game 2. This would be a fine prediction if it wasn’t on the pretense that James had a cold and that’s what was keeping this elite multi-million dollar NBA superstar from performing at the top of his game in the first game of this series.
Bulls fans can take this one of two way, the first being insult and frustration. Insult because although the numbers of Game 1 may not transfer to Game 2, they still beat the Miami Heat by a twenty plus margin. The other way they can take it is with laughter and pity for the Heat. After all, we all know they are not the most composed team when they lose and aren’t beyond using a cold as an implied excuse as to why they didn’t perform in Game 1.
Either LeBron is seriously saying his head cold had something to do with his performance in Game 1, or the media is trying to create a story out of nothing (not the first time it has ever happened), but either way a new storyline has been created heading into Game 2. Should the Heat lose, this cold excuse could be topped by another and may go down as an example of who the Heat really are, a team who is very capable of being the NBA’s best team but can’t because they are so easily defeated by a common virus such as the cold.
But they way the media has jumped on this story, if the Heat win don’t be surprised if they call it the “Cold Game” which will go down in Miami lore the same way Jordan had his “Flu Game”.
A win in Game 2 by the Bulls just got a lot more satisfying on a lot more levels with this latest excuse from Miami. We’ll see if the media will finally recognize find another excuse for the loss. Either way the stakes just went up in Game 2.