Well after midnight, a fatigued and frustrated Chauncey Billups slumped in a chair at his house and reluctantly turned on SportsCenter, knowing what he was going to see. On the last day of May in 2007, the first hot night of the late spring in suburban Detroit, the Detroit Pistons lost a crushing overtime home game to the Cleveland Cavaliers and their precocious 22-year-old star, LeBron James. Billups watched the highlights showing James scoring 29 of his team's last 30 points to upset the Pistons in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals to take a stunning 3-2 series lead over the No. 1 seed Pistons, a team that had owned the Cavs over the previous few seasons. The behind-the-back escape dribble
The Heat, looking for another skilled young big man, quietly flew in at least four interesting draft prospects to team headquarters for private workouts this week, according to multiple sources. The Heat summoned Baylor 6-10 power forward Johnathan Motley, Indiana 6-10 center Thomas Bryant, and UCLA 6-10 power forward/center Ike Anigbogu. As we reported here Wednesday, the Heat also had California 6-10 power forward Ivan Rabb in for a workout. Bryant was matched against Anibogu in the workout, and Motley competed against Rabb. Aside from Rabb, none of the other three are projected to go as high as the Heat’s pick at No. 14, Miami’s only selection in the June 22 draft. But it’s possible the Heat
Mike Brown, standing in for Golden State coach Steve Kerr as the Warriors head into an unprecedented NBA championship rubber match with Cleveland, is downplaying his complicated Cavaliers connections. Brown has been at the helm as the Warriors stormed unbeaten through the first three rounds of the playoffs with Kerr sidelined by debilitating symptoms stemming from back surgery two years ago.