Despite being NBA Champions and despite the fact that they only got better this summer, the Miami Heat are still looked at as a team with a flaw. They're not big enough. The team's only true centers are Joel Anthony, who many have said has hands like bricks, and Dexter Pittman, who is Dexter Pittman. That fact isn't lost on Heat President Pat Riley, but it also doesn't concern him. Riley said used a comparison between San Antonio Spurs big man Tim Duncan and Chris Bosh (H/T to the Sun Sentinel's Ira Winderman).
""We signed Chris, basically, in my mind, fully in my mind, not in the back of my mind, he was probably going to be our center in critical situations," Riley said on the Joe Rose Show. "And, so, Chris Bosh is a power forward, he's a Tim Duncan-type player, but when you watch the San Antonio Spurs play, Tim is in the middle. That's all there is to it."
I think the fairest way to describe that comparison is "interesting." The initial reaction is that Riley just made a silly comparison between the greatest power forward ever and a guy who is currently maybe a top five power forward in the league. So in that sense, yes, it's silly to compare Duncan and Bosh. However, Riley has the utmost respect for Duncan and once told the San Antonio Express News he could see Duncan playing and being effective, like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar until he's 40. So to say he was somehow downplaying Duncan's greatness or putting Bosh on a Duncan level pedestal.
Not to put words in one of the greatest coaches of all time's mouth, but Riley probably meant the Heat are asking Bosh to play the Duncan role, particularly on defense. If you go back to the NBA Finals, Bosh willingly played the center role and protected the rim against Oklahoma City almost as well as Duncan did. And the direction the league is going, you really only need one big on the court at one time to rim protect. Ironically, the Spurs and Heat have a similar problem which is they both lack a reliable back up when Duncan and Bosh respectively go to the bench (though Joel Anthony is an excellent defender despite being undersized). It also helps to have the guy who is probably the best defender in the league playing small forward.
In conclusion, Pat Riley's comment looks silly out of context. In context he's saying his team wouldn't mind another big guy, but they don't need one because they just won the NBA Championship in five games.
I never like Pat, but this time he's just make the comment regarding the position...not career achievement. No need to over-react on this one.
Hahahahahaha. Oh Pat Riley. Maybe you can compare their offensive play now (spot up shooters off of the pick and roll with occasional post-up) as similar but defensively Bosh still can't hold a candle to Timmy D. Even at his ripe old age, Timmy is a defensive force underneath the basket.
And let's not even mention crying in the locker room AFTER REGULAR SEASON LOSSES.
@CraigThomas yeah he was such a defensive force that OKC ran them out of the gym, lol
@DavidJackson2 Yeah ok dude. What about the first two games where we TORCHED the Thunder? Duncan couldn't play the entire game and when he would go out, the lane with be wide open because of our lack of bigs.
Oh, did I hit a nerve there with crying Chris Bosh? I must have forgotten to mention LeChoke James and his 2011 Finals performance. I still think that will go down in NBA history as one of the most incredible mental breakdowns we've seen in the NBA Finals. Why don't you hop back on your Heat bandwagon over at the Heat Index and leave the real basketball for us Spurs fans.
@DavidJackson2 @CraigThomas Well we actually only got "torched" in games 3 and 4 if you watched. Game 5 came down to us running out of gas in the end, and game 6 was atrociously called in the 4th quarter in favor of the Thunder.
Joel Anthony is a better defender than any other big except for Duncan on the Spurs. Haslem offensively is more reliable than all our of bigs except for Duncan and maybe Diaw. So y'alls bigs were better than ours. Not to mention Kendrick Perkins is a defensive low post specialist. He's not supposed to be covering mobile PF's like Bosh.
Talk about overrated, you guys went seven games against the Pacers this year. The Pacers... The Eastern Conference is a joke. The Celtics were able to take you guys to 7 games with just old Garnett and Rondo. Rondo dropped 44 points on you and he can't even shoot!!
And I believe you just breezed over my statement about Lebron's mental breakdown being the laughing-stock of the NBA Finals. It was one of the most embarrassing things I've ever "witnessed." I was actually rooting for y'all to beat the Mavs but Lebron's mental shutdown was just too comical not to cheer against. To be held nearly scoreless in 6 straight 4th quarters is horrible. Congratulations on this year but you'll need another 3 to catch up to the Spurs dynasty.
@CraigThomas Really???? How do you guys have the best record, sweep through the first 12 games of the playoffs and then get torched in 4 games, dont make me laugh!!!!
Oh and did I mention the fact that we had no center to play against OKC but we still handled them in 5 games. Soooo....., it has nothing to do with the play of duncan or the lack of bigs, the spurs or just overrated "NOW" when it comes to the playoffs, years ago, they were good, but not anymore, its just a fact.
I think he just meant more in terms of the role they each play for their team. No reason to get offended.
Now, I'll admit. When I first read the comparison was made, I just about burried my forehead into my hand as deep as it would go. But upon reading what he actually meant, I understand.
Nonetheless....good luck with all that, though. Bosh isn't even a poor man's Tim Duncan. Heck, not even a homeless man's Tim Duncan. Lololol.
I think his comparison was the fact that they are both true Centers who play the Power Forward spot. But when it comes down to it, as he stated, Timmy is playing Center. Bosh should be doing the same.
That's the only comparison and I believe that was Pat Riley's point.
Chris Bosh just got his first ring. Pat Riley shouldn't be saying much about the comparison. Duncan has 4 rings an gonna get his 5th ring this coming year an he's been doing his thing for many years. No comparison, hands down.