The Supremes and the 2014 NBA playoffs
USA Today Sports
Way back in 1966, a little group of singers called “The Supremes” released a vinyl with a song called, “You Can’t Hurry Love,” on one side of the record.
It’s a Motown classic, and screw you Dixie Chicks for trying to remake it.
Why bring it up halfway through the first round of the playoffs? I bring it up because the moral of the song is to be patient, and wait for the best opportunity to come along. So, for you playoff series that are getting interesting, here’s a little advice from The Supremes.
INDIANA vs ATLANTA
“You can’t hurry love, no you just have to wait.”
What happened, Indiana? It’s a ball, you catch it, pass it around, dribble it a few times, and generally try to put it in the hoop. It’s not that complicated, yet Roy Hibbert, Paul George, George Hill and the rest of their teammates seem to have forgotten a basic skill that impacts half of the game – how to score the ball.
The Pacers don’t seem to be handling the pressure of being the number one seed very well. I get it, anxiety and peer pressure are real things, and it’s hard to be at your best all the time. I have found that the best thing to do is to take a few deep breaths, close your eyes, count to 10, and then get back in the flow of things.
Stop rushing things, and get back to basics. The Pacers have already shown an ability to lock down the Hawks on defense, but turnovers kill any momentum a defensive stop produced.
Benching Roy Hibbert and starting Ian Mahinmi? The series isn’t over, just wait and trust your guys to come through. If not, maybe bringing in Evan Turner and Andrew Bynum wasn’t as good as a move as it seemed at the time.
It’s okay, Larry. Roy just needs some love.
HOUSTON vs PORTLAND
“But I keep on waiting, anticipating for that soft voice to talk to me at night. For some tender arms to hold me tight. I keep waiting, I keep on waiting, but it ain’t easy.”
Hey, what do you know, an offense that relies on 3-point shots and shots at the rim is struggling in the playoffs!
Don’t panic, though, Rockets fans. If you thought the Rockets would beat the Trail Blazers in 7 games, you still need to lose one more game in order for a Game 7 to be a possibility.
Playoff basketball is tough. The defenses tighten up, rebounding becomes more difficult, and 82 games are already in the book. But those tender arms that will hold you tight? The Supremes are trying to tell Houston to man up and play better defense. It won’t be easy, but it looks like if they don’t figure out how to disrupt Portland’s offense, then they’re just going to keep running plays through LaMarcus Aldridge and Damian Lillard.
Also, behold Robin Lopez!
WASHINGTON vs CHICAGO
[Repeat and fade]
This note is at the end of the song, as The Supremes repeat the chorus as the song ends. Unfortunately, it is eerily similar to the end of game offense by the Bulls.
Are the Bulls toast? That seems rash, but they need to finish 4-1 against a team that won the season series and has three more home games. Tom Thibodeau may be the better coach in this series, but it’s looking like Randy Wittman is going to have the skills to get his balanced Wizards squad at least into the second round.
Hindsight is 20/20, but it does look like a bit of a mistake to sign a player known for his offensive production, not play him, and then struggle on offense in the playoffs.
So go ahead and throw out the same rotations as usual, and see if they can find a way to beat the Wizards. It’s not like doing more of the same would make countering it any easier for the opposing team, right?
San Antonio and Dallas should continue to be a good series between two veteran teams who know what they’re doing. Oklahoma City and Memphis is exciting, but is demonstrating why Memphis was a team to avoid in the playoffs. Miami is going to beat Charlotte. Brooklyn and Toronto need to play a game in Brooklyn before a proper diagnosis can be given. Los Angeles is going to beat Golden State; Mark Jackson already waved the white flag by using a lineup with Draymond Green at the 5.
The playoffs – they’re just so great.