Luke Waltons Forehead presented by the Sports Dude.

Sunday, May 22, 2005 at 9:56 PM

Where the hell have I been????

No, the sports dude did not retire, nor did he get killed by some Indiana Pacer fan for talking lots of crap about there team the past couple weeks. The truth of the matter is, for those few readers of mine that check here daily work has gotten in the way. Yes, that sticking 9-5 job of mine has had me out of town all week, heading up a training program for one of our customers. The good news is I am here right now to submit a quick post. The bad news is I am out of town, yet again, next week. All that crap aside, I am taking a few minutes here to finally make a post and get back to all of you readers, the few that there are, that I truly miss - for whatever reason that is! Anyway, here is what I got.

The Indiana Pacer threat is now gone, and I could not be happier. The series is over and I am only going to touch on a few points quickly before I discuss the Miami Heat series. Here are my few random thoughts on the Pacers series.

Damn, was that a sappy tribute to Reggie Miller or what? ABC Sports treated him like Michael Jordan, another basketball player I never cared for much either. The video highlights, the flashbacks, it was all enough to make me puke! And I still had to sit through the damn game! That was enough to drive me crazy and then ABC had to throw all that Reggie Miller junk on top of it! Well, the only thing I have to say is it was classy and first rate what Larry Brown did, calling the time out for him. That was the only part of it I didn't mind and was enough if you ask me. All in all the series went as expected, I am glad we came out injury free and now, on to Miami.

Let us now turn our focus to the Heat and what the Sports Dude thinks about that series. First we will briefly turn to the match ups and what I think of them. I say briefly because I have done it before in previous posts so I really don't feel like repeating myself again. I am going to take a player away from each teams starting five because they really eliminate one another as far as I am concerned. Those two players are Ben Wallace and Shaq. You know Shaq has been waiting for this and, injured thigh or not, he is going to be up for this task. He has been waiting for a year to get back at the Pistons and Ben is going to be the main guy on him. That being said, I am going to concentrate on the other four starters for each team. Ready - here we go! Chauncey Billups against Damon Jones, Rip Hamilton against Eddie Jones and Rasheed Wallace against that Udonis Haslem (whom?!?!) guy. Now, if any reader out there picked a Miami Heat starter before a Detroit starter - go get your head checked, you don't know shit about basketball! Every one of those match ups goes to Detroit, hands down, period, point blank, end of story. The only match up I left out is Dwayne Wade against Tayshaun Prince, and there is a reason. Look, Wade can flat out ball, there is no question. But Prince always guards the opposing teams best non-big man threat and Wade has never seen a defender quite like him. I still expect Wade to put up numbers, but he is going to have to work much harder than he ever has before - just ask Tracy McGrady and Kobe Bryant! That being said, the edge goes to Wade - but doing it for a six or seven game series? Don't count on it!

Next, before I get to my prediction, I want to talk about my "conspiracy theory" that appears to be taking place here. Shaq has a severe thigh bruise, the type of injury that to get back to 100% takes about six weeks of rest. Anyone else think, knowing that about his injury, that the first three games go Monday - Wednesday - Sunday? What the hell is that? Three days for travel? Shit, it should be Friday - Sunday if you ask me, what the hell is that? Something just smells fishy to me there, but I guess it could just be me.

Well, here we go, time for the bold prediction. I am running low on time, so I am going to have to make this quick. Pistons in seven, end of story - and here is what I am basing it on. Last year, the Pistons beat the Bucks in the first round, 4-1. This year it was the Sixers, 4-1. Last year they beat the Pacers in six in the Conference Finals, this year it was the same 4-2 but in the second round. What is missing - the seven game series against the Nets. Well, here you have it folks, the Pistons will beat the Heat in the same fashion as the Nets last year, 4-3. The first four games will be a even split, 2-2. If I had my guess, I think the Pistons will go lose, win, win, lose. That takes us to game #5 in Miami, which unfortunately the Pistons will lose. Game #6 in Detroit, Pistons win big and, yes, that's right - they eliminate the Heat in Miami in game #7. Sorry, but the Pistons beat a healthier Shaq last year with a better supporting cast, I just don't see it being any other way. Plus, there are two other ex-factors I look at - the coaches and experience. Larry Brown should never be out coached by anyone in this league and I definitely don't see Ron Jeremy - I mean Stan Van Gundy - doing that. Next, the starting five of the Pistons have been there and done that, they are the same unit that won it last year and have been together longer now. That will be key in pressure situations and I think will help be the undoing for the Heat.

Well, that is all the crap I have time to spew for now. I will be back next week for more babbling and garbage - later! The Sports Dude.

PS - the computer I am on is not allowing me to spell check this damn post! If it sucks I apologize, but I got to go pack now! Peace the fork out my hearties!

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