Humans crave understanding. We search for it with science and religion. We want explanations that soothe our curiosities, and give us the illusion of control.
But we are out of control right now when it comes to the Miami Heat. Totally. None of us has any earthly idea if the Miami is going to win the championship. Heat fans hope/believe/pray and swagger and talk trash with endless bravado and would commit felonies and risk prison time to make their hope/belief/prayer so but they dont know. The extra-noisy-after-Heat-losses media that still engulfs this team with poorly-camouflaged hostility predicts and dissects using every math and bias available to man and does not know.
This creates a restlessness in both groups, fans seeing media bias in every crevice, the media finding loud Miami fans obnoxious, both sides unreasonably emotional which is rarely the state where anyone finds proper perspective, never mind answers to the unknowable. This is not an environment where people learn; this is an environment where people fight.
And weve all been here for three bleeping years. It is exhausting and debilitating, impacting your sleep and small daily things like, um, YOUR HAPPINESS. Imagine what it is like for the players. You know, the gasping guys at the center of it all with their lungs burning for three bleeping years. It is a small miracle that they can shoot straight with their hands trembling and faces spasming. If we keep climbing in this atmosphere, as we surely will, there is going to have to be a timeout, and those ballboys are going to have to scamper onto the court to mop up the floor because the head of Chris Bosh has actually exploded.
(His head has always appeared smaller than it should be proportionally, and it is definitely smaller than it was when he arrived here three years ago, the daily pressure on his temples eroding his skull by several inches, according to ESPN Stats And Information People I Just Invented. But, seriously, if you are looking for a reason amid your confusion and fear that the Heat dont always play the way it did in Game 7 against the Pacers and Game 4 against the Spurs, maybe it is because playing that way is really, really hard. And the players have lived in this space for three draining years. And sometimes they also win by taking the easier route of jump shots and defense that is slightly less piranha. Because it is human nature for human beings to take the easier route on occasion if that route often gets the right result, too.)
(Be comforted that they can summon the piranha effort as often as they have. And be scared that the Spurs are good enough to shoot over it sometimes even when it is summoned, as Tony Parker did to LeBron James with one-tenth of a second of panic remaining in Game 1.)
The environment is so tense that fans muster something close to hatred for the personalities who talk about fun and games on television. Absorb that one for moment. That Entertainment Reporter questioned the Heats effort in the fun-and-games arena? I hate him! How dare he doubt my team (at a time that I, too, am doubting)?!?! Analyst X predicts the Spurs will win in 6 games even though Analyst X, like all of us, doesnt know anything and Heat Fan X files this away for future hatred opportunities while asking neighbors and strangers what they think is going to happen in the next game, not in search of actual connecting with another human being but in search of an opinion that feels like soothing.