The Miami Heat came into Game 2 of the NBA Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers facing a 1-0 deficit and down two of their top players, as Bam Adebayo (neck) and Goran Dragic (foot) were both ruled out ahead of Friday's game. The Heat countered by putting Meyers Leonard and Tyler Herro in the starting lineup and looked to get other role players such as Kelly Olynyk involved.
The Lakers held a 14-point lead to close the first half, but the Heat did everything they could to keep the game within reach. Midway through the third quarter, the Lakers' lead swelled to 18 points and the game looked to be out of reach for the Heat. Players looked tentative at points of the contest and appeared overwhelmed by Los Angeles' offense.
All we wanna see is some fight. Let's go. Keep playing— DWade (@DwyaneWade) October 3, 2020
With the game hanging in the balance, the captain stood up and had something to say.
Heat lifer Udonis Haslem, who played just 44 minutes in the 2019-20 regular season and has yet to enter a game this postseason, emphatically tried to motivate the rest of his teammates. Haslem, 40, urged them to play harder and called out their lack of effort at points during Game 2.
NBA stars Dwyane Wade and CJ McCollum took notice of Haslem and shared their appreciation for the veteran on Twitter.
The one on the bench can't be more angry than the ones of the court. We need that same energy on the court. You can't spar with them and you won't outplay the Lakers. You have to fight, scrap and make it ugly to even have a chance https://t.co/ieh4NhGbwE— DWade (@DwyaneWade) October 3, 2020
When the OG speak . Everybody listen 👂 ✊🏾 https://t.co/WfSFbiDeUH— CJ McCollum (@CJMcCollum) October 3, 2020
Talk your talk OG 🙏🏾 https://t.co/pt4EPO8YSe— Bismack Biyombo (@bismackbiyombo) October 3, 2020
The motivational speech worked to a degree, as the Heat cut the lead to nine late in the third quarter.
After the game, Wade was appreciative of the improved effort and was hopeful his former team will find a way to make it a competitive series.
👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾 I like that effort Miami. Keep fighting and figuring It out.— DWade (@DwyaneWade) October 3, 2020
Now down 2-0 and with the Heat running out of options in the best-of-seven series, Jimmy Butler joked that maybe Haslem should do the "cussing out" a bit sooner moving forward.
Jimmy Butler said he responded to this speech, but noted that it shouldn't take that to light a fire. "We have to do it from the jump."— Malika Andrews (@malika_andrews) October 3, 2020
"Maybe he should just start the game off cussing people out," he joked. https://t.co/KJTAARihLD