Nov 29, 2010, 4:11 PM EDT
Tracy McGrady is clairvoyant. Ms. Cleo incarnate. He says he saw this coming.
While the world is talking about the 9-8 Heat, the slow start and the frankly ugly offensive basketball they have settled into, McGrady told the Detroit Free Press this is what he expected.
“It’s what I expected,” McGrady said of the Heat’s struggles Sunday after the Pistons suffered a double-overtime loss to the Knicks. “You’ve got two guys (James and Wade) that really don’t mix. I mean, they’re the same type of player. They just don’t complement each other.”
“Not at all,” he said. “It’s tough to get that chemistry. You can’t just go somewhere and create that type of chemistry. (James) had that in Cleveland. He had everything going for him. Great energy in the building. He created a great atmosphere. I enjoyed going to Cleveland because the atmosphere was just unbelievable.
“The chemistry he had with his teammates was unbelievable,” McGrady continued. “You can’t just go somewhere and create that. You can see it on his face. He’s not having fun. I’m so used to him doing all his antics on the basketball court, and he’s not doing that. You can see that something is just not right.”
Both guys have had the ball in their hands and did often in years past, but the thing is LeBron can work well off the ball. They did run some of those sets in Cleveland to great effect. Besides the steady diet of pick-and-roll we imagined an offense with some more flex-like sets, maybe even some pure isolation (so the help defenders have farther to go). Or, you know, they could just run more.
McGrady says he saw this coming, and so far he has the scoreboard. But what is frustrating is we all saw in our minds much more, an offense that wasn’t so predictable and execution worthy of this Big 3. Right now that remains a figment of our imagination.