“It’s a club,” Andersen said. “It’s blood in and blood out and I ain’t telling you the secrets.”
Blood in and blood out ... gotcha.
Miller has no problem explaining the details of the rain dance, but the secret handshake with Andersen is off limits.
“It’s a secret handshake,” Miller said. “I’m not giving you a story on a secret handshake. In fact, it’s rated ‘R,’ so it can’t go in the newspaper. That’d be a bad story, bro.”
So that one will remain a blood secret, but there are other handshakes that are rated ‘G.’ For example, Chalmers’ handshake with Miller was pulled from something Chalmers saw on TV between rapper E-40 and entertainer Jamie Foxx.
“It’s ‘no fingerprints,’” Chalmers said. “Me and Killer go ‘no fingerprints’ before the game.”
Basically, Chalmers and Miller — he’s called “Killer” by his teammates — tap (or tickle) their fingertips together and then give each other five.
LeBron James’ pregame chalk toss, a holdover from his days in Cleveland, was once the most recognizable pregame ritual in basketball. Of course, that routine wasn’t exactly organic. It coincided with an advertising campaign for Nike. James has given up the pixie-dust routine, but some of his current teammates have picked up the tradition in a sarcastic nod to James’ old ways.
Miller, Jones, and others sometimes throw excess chalk together before tipoff, but that’s not standard pre-game fare. On the other hand, the gag Miller, Bosh and Allen perform at the scorer’s table has worked its way into the nightly repertoire.
Miller rips off a sheet of the court’s sticky mat—before and during games, players wipe the soles of their sneakers on it to remove dust—and hands it to Bosh before posting up to Allen against the table. Bosh passes the waded up plastic to Miller, who then turns and shoots the trash over the table and through the arms of one of the Heat’s statistics keepers.
What’s the origin of that tradition? Once again, Miller was mum on the subject.
“I know the reason it started, but you can’t put it in the story,” Miller said. “We wouldn’t get any more calls from the refs.”
Better not go there. The Heat is going to need all the help it can get against the Spurs.