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Winderman: Heat can’t fly under radar against Knicks

Apr 26, 2012, 12:03 PM EDT

Miami Heat v New York Knicks Getty Images

Heat? What Heat?

LeBron? LeBron who?

No, the Heat have not exactly flown under the radar this season, but when you think back to the glare of last season, it sure seems that way.

Until now.

Until what is possibly to come next.

It would be easy enough to remain somewhat off the grid if the Philadelphia 76ers were to secure the No. 7 seed in the East. But that’s not going to happen. That’s the last thing the 76ers want.

It would have been even easier if the Orlando Magic had fallen to No. 7 in the East, but the historically bad Charlotte Bobcats were too historically bad on Wednesday night.

So it sure seems like Round 5 of Heat-Knicks, Playoffs Edition, is on the way, Miami-New York in the playoffs for the first time since 2000.

And that has Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and LeBron James more than aware of the glare that is about to consume all things Big Three.

As if it’s July 2010 all over again.

“The lights would be as bright as they possibly could be, besides playing in the Finals, for a first round,” Wade said. “Normally, a series like this, with that kind of attention is more like an Eastern Conference finals type of first round.”

Bosh agreed.

“You know how it’s going to be,” he said. “The New York media is its own monster in itself. But just to have it back again, and have that chance, showing the old clips, the old fights, it’s just history there.”

For his part, LeBron is downplaying the glare. For now.

“I’m looking forward to it if it’s the Knicks media, Philadelphia Inquirer or the Orlando Sentinel, whatever the case may be,” he said. “I’ll be ready for it.”

No, not after this season’s grace period. To a degree, Journalism 101 only now begins for the Heat, provided it’s the Knicks this weekend.

Ira Winderman writes regularly for NBCSports.com and covers the Heat and the NBA for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. You can follow him on Twitter at @IraHeatBeat.

  1. tomtravis76 - Apr 26, 2012 at 12:24 PM

    This is going to be a tough series for the Heat. The Knicks are big and physical down low, but the Heat have some bangers as well. The Knicks guards just can’t matchup with the Heats guards… DWade.

    Heat will take them in 5 maybe a sweep.

    The Knicks would have a better chance of advancing by playing the Bulls. Nobody on the Bulls can guard Melo.

    • stayhigh_247 - Apr 26, 2012 at 12:50 PM

      @tomtravis76
      I hear you but nah…..Melo is the best scorer in the league, not many people can guard him one on one, but Luol Deng and Taj Gibson can and will make life difficult for him. What you saw in the reg season and whats about to happen will not be the same thing. NY has a better shot at dominating a Heat team thats weak in the middle. I expect a whole lot of Tyson and Stat which will make life easy for Novak. Neutralize Melo and where are your points coming from in either series?

      • tomtravis76 - Apr 26, 2012 at 1:05 PM

        I know we are looking at Heat v Bulls in the Eastern Conference finals. It will be great finals, and it should be that way.

      • gametight78 - Apr 26, 2012 at 4:59 PM

        A injured or coming off of injury rose rip and deng, And your saying knicks are better vs the heat. Noo ill pass

    • jolink653 - Apr 26, 2012 at 2:42 PM

      shumpert can match up with d wade and slow him down…james and carmelo will obviously be the matchup to watch but i think stat and bosh will determine a lot depending on how amare can score and put pressure on the heat in one of their weak areas…if the knicks can involve tyson more on the offensive end i think this will be a long series for the heat especially since the knicks have the much deeper and better bench and the second unit can outplay miami’s second unit…don’t be surprised if this goes to 6 or 7 games and i might be a little biased as a knicks fan but i think the knicks can steal this series if they stop settling for outside shots and drive the ball to the basket to put pressure on miami’s defense…if stat is healthy and ready to go the knicks have a second legitimate scoring threat and we know they can hang with the heat without amare

    • Mr. Wright 212 - Apr 26, 2012 at 3:24 PM

      The Heat’s guards? Wade and who? The Knicks have a WAVE of guys they can throw at Wade as he spends half the game flopping and throwing himself to the floor — Shump, JR, Fields will all have turns guarding him. No one cares about Chalmers. Shump can shift over to him if he makes a couple of wide open looks (which is all he’ll have). Joel Anthony is a joke. Let LeBron score, Bam Bam and Tyson’s points will more than cancel out anything Bosh does and at the end of the day, you still cannot stop Melo and doubling him only opens the floor for Shump, Fields, JR and Novak.

      I love how Heat “fans” are looking past this series. Just like the Spurs, the Heat’s first round opponents are the LAST teams they wanted to play.

      • brianjoates - Apr 26, 2012 at 4:29 PM

        I really want Melo to get a ring soon, but it is just not going to happen this year. The Heat are just too good of a basketball team to beat in a seven game series.

  2. hwatt - Apr 26, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    yeah, for LeBron, there’s no real such thing as ‘more intense media coverage’. For a guy who singlehandedly commanded the attention of a nation and (turned heel) with his own national espn special…. the New York media probably feels like a low-budget neighborhood newspaper to him

    • loungefly74 - Apr 26, 2012 at 1:14 PM

      zinga!

      • paintman34 - Apr 26, 2012 at 4:26 PM

        Yeah shrumpert held wade pretty good last game, smh u think a rookie can hold wade? smh go learn some basketball

  3. 1972wasalongtimeago - Apr 26, 2012 at 1:18 PM

    NY-Boston-Chicago-OKC/SA/LA

    Wouldn’t want it any other way.

    • gmen4life33 - Apr 26, 2012 at 1:44 PM

      more like NY-go fishing

  4. ezmagic - Apr 26, 2012 at 2:17 PM

    I’ll always remember Jeff van gundy being dragged across the court holding onto Alonzo’s leg. Great moment lol…. Since i live in Orlando, born in NYC and hating any team labeled Miami. I’m pushing for the Knicks. I use to like the marlins til they changed their name lol. Go rays

  5. dysraw1 - Apr 26, 2012 at 10:33 PM

    no fear is the theme against the heat when dick D’antonee was in charge we play that soft b-ball but now we got woody the heat should fear us

  6. lmvs2012 - Apr 27, 2012 at 4:04 AM

    Knicks! All the way!..big upset! Foshooooo!

  7. fanz928 - Apr 27, 2012 at 8:18 AM

    SWEEP

  8. nokoolaidcowboy - Apr 27, 2012 at 10:11 AM

    Note to Wade: Keep your woman in check!

    Note to James: Keep your mama in check!

    Note to Knicks: Play your hearts out!

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