New podkast with Bomani Jones: The NBA Finals, LeBron and Pau's persona

June, 11, 2011
6/11/11
6:34
PM PT
Kamenetzky By Andy Kamenetzky
ESPNLosAngeles.com
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When in town to do higher profile shows like "Rome is Burning," Bomani Jones (The Morning Jones on Sirius 158) is often kind enough to make the schlep downtown to join us in studio for our little dog and pony show. Last Friday was one of those times. Among the talking points in this week's batch of ear candy:

PODCAST
Andy and Brian talk NBA Finals with Bomani Jones (The Morning Jones on Sirius 158, everything ESPN TV). In particular, the insanity that is the coverage of LeBron James.

Podcast
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- Bomani's observation that Brian, with his glasses, shaved head and (specifically) with his mouth wide open, resembles a white Mike Brown. We'd never thought about it before, but he's actually right and the response when put out to the Twitter-verse was unanimously in agreement.

- We take a look at the NBA Finals, which many fans and analysts did not anticipate heading into Game 6 with the Dallas Mavericks up 3-2 on the Miami Heat. (A lot of people thought Miami might have already wrapped things by now). The star power is obviously on the Heat's side, but the Mavs have been stronger with elements like depth, team play and -- as Bomani notes -- coaching. And these aspects do in fact matter.

- We examine the way the Finals coverage has been fixated on one player (LeBron James) in a way we've never seen. At times, it doesn't even feel as if anybody is watching the actual series so much as evaluating The King's legacy possession by possession. Even taking into account his intermittently uncomfortable body language and recurrent passiveness late into fourth quarters, the scrutiny has been off the charts, myopic and occasionally inaccurate. Does the level of disappointment fairly reflect LeBron's play, or rather that his play doesn't meet the post-Michael Jordan criteria for a superstar wing?

- No matter who eventually wins between Dallas and Miami, does this highly contested series disprove the increasingly popular notion that a championship cannot be attained without three superstars in their prime? In our opinion, yes. Or at the very least, it disproves the theory that any three stars can make it work, no questions asked.

For example, James and Dwyane Wade may eventually perfect the art playing together, but for the time being, they're as likely to frustrate each other as the opposition. Ideally, you'd want a big three like Paul Pierce, Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett or Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and either Andrew Bynum/Lamar Odom (depending on who you consider the third best player): Quality players with varying skill sets, which allows for a greater ability to mesh.

- While it may not be possible to solve the Wade-James riddle before the series ends, the one thing the Heat can do to improve their fortunes is stop tempting karma and comeuppance. Don't make fun of Dirk Nowitzki's cough (even if, in reality, this really wasn't a particularly big deal). And what will it take for LeBron to finally recognize that every time he Tweets, something bad happens to his team?

- Three words to help Pau shed his "soft" persona: Shaved head. Goatee.

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Kobe Bryant
PTS AST STL MIN
25.2 4.8 1.4 35.4
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Hill 8.6
AssistsK. Bryant 4.8
StealsK. Bryant 1.4
BlocksE. Davis 1.2