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LeBron James and Dwyane Wade Have Struggled in the Clutch, Stats Confirm

The Miami Heat have two of the best closers in the game today in Dwyane Wade and LeBron James yet they struggle to maintain late leads and close out games.  This is counterintuitive considering how great both LeBron and Dwyane have been throughout their careers in the “clutch.” Their struggles have played out in front of millions and they need to correct this if they ever want to win the NBA Championship.

The 4th quarter collapse to the Orlando Magic Thursday night summed up Miami’s struggles this season. The Heat was up as much as 24 points in the 3rd quarter but they allowed a 22-7 run to the Magic. From that point, you could see the train wreck developing in slow-motion. Miami carried a 9-point lead into the 4th but you could see the twist at the end developing. This game was building up to be a culmination of Miami’s season long struggles. You knew that at one point, LeBron was going to get a chance to take a game winning or saving shot and that he was going to come up short.

And it played out exactly like that.

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Danny Ainge Should Be Thanked for Making Kendrick Perkins Trade

When Danny Ainge dealt Kendrick Perkins to the Oklahoma City Thunder the basketball world felt pure shock. As a fan of the Boston Celtics, I felt pure rage. Even Lakers fans were left in disbelief over what had transpired at the trade deadline. Why would Danny pull off a last second deal that may disturb the balance of the universe and cause the New England commonwealth to cave in upon itself? I decided to give it a few games as see what other moves Danny had planned before I crowned him the new Joe Dumars of the NBA.

A week has passed and the dust has settled. A few games and the new-look Boston Celtics look good. In fact, they look better. We shouldn’t just forgive Danny Ainge for moving Perkins, we should thank him.

Part of the reason Perkins was moved was because he had turned down a 4-year, $22-million offer from the Celtics. Perkins believed his value to be $10-million per year and the Celtics front office disagreed. The other key in the trade was Marquis Daniels going down with a neck injury. This left Boston with no backup small forward to help relieve Paul Pierce of his duties. Afraid that Boston and Pierce would burn out before the Finals and Perkins would leave shortly thereafter as a free agent, Ainge pulled the trigger. The move had two purposes: Try and salvage as much of this season as possible as well as help cushion the teams decline in the post-Big 3 era.

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