The Heat is on
After what feels like a season lasting two and a half years this week finally gave us a winner of the NBA finals and the ice hockey's Stanley Cup.
In American sports there is no need for 90 minutes of nail biting drama, with sudden death if required, not if you can play each other umpteen times in front of television camera's broken up by adverts for beer and viagra every 5 minutes.
Actually Basketball is an American sport that I have come to appreciate. 5 huge men sprinting up and down the court, throwing themselves around, interchanging quickly an threading a ball into an eye of a needle from impossible distances.
The young Chicago Bulls
were celebrating their 2nd consecutive appearance in the play-off's back in April, when the city still had snow on the ground. They ended up losing bravely to a powerful Miami Heat team and last night, 2 months after the 'regular season' ended the huge but ageing Shaquille O'Neil with young marvel Dwayne Wade helped Miami to their 4th consecutive victory, 3 in Miami and the last but most crucial one in Dallas to win the NBA title series for the first time.
The 24-year old Chicago born Wade has been inspirational in the final series and has found the consistency he has been accused of not having. His points totals of 42, 36, 43 and 36 in the four Miami wins only begin to describe his domination of the Mavericks. He is the latest in a long line of young men to be tagged with the new Jordan moniker, but Wade probably has the strongest claim yet.
Whilst most of the country is basked in 90 degree heat ice hockey's Stanley Cup continued in vain and finally produced a champion this week, the Carolina Hurricanes
. The much travelled franchise (it has operated in 5 cities), now settled in Raleigh, North Carolina beat off a fierce come back from the Edmonton Oilers to win game 7 of the series 3-1 on a sweltering night in the RBC hockey rink on Monday.