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Report: Erik Spoelstra had to yell at Duncan Robinson to ‘shoot the f—ing ball’ in Game 2 vs. Lakers
- Updated: October 3, 2020
The collective passion of the Miami Heat and the frustrations of dropping the first two games of the NBA Finals had Heat coach Erik Spoelstra directing a profane order at Duncan Robinson during Friday’s contest.
The 124-114 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 2 had the Heat playing from behind for most of the game, with Robinson’s apparent reluctance to shoot striking a nerve with Spoelstra, according to Sam Amick of The Athletic.
“The Heat’s fire — pun intended — is quite a thing to watch in its own right,” Amick wrote. “Regardless of outcome or odds, there is a level of intensity with their group that is not the norm up and down the NBA. In the first quarter, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra could be heard yelling at young Duncan Robinson to ‘shoot the f—ing ball’ when he showed the kind of hesitancy that could cost you a win on a stage like this. In the third quarter, Heat legend Udonis Haslem — the three-time champion who doesn’t play but whose voice has been so valuable for this young team — took over a Heat timeout and shouted at his teammates in the kind of way that is only allowed if you have the credentials to back it up.”
Robinson was held scoreless in Wednesday’s Game 1 loss, missing all three of his shot attempts, before hitting only 2-of-7 attempts in Game 2.
The apparent reluctance of Robinson to shoot is baffling considering he had no problem launching shots in the previous three playoff series.
On four different occasions, Robinson collected five or more 3-pointers in a postseason game, including five in the Sept. 27 win over the Boston Celtics to clinch the Eastern Conference title.
The Heat are already dealing with key absences in the backcourt, so Robinson needs to start putting up the ball when he takes the court. Otherwise, the 0-2 deficit the team is already dealing with is likely to become worse.
Since the Heat can ill afford another loss, the contributions of a player like Robinson, who hit on 44.6 percent of his 3-pointers during the regular season, are absolutely imperative to the team’s hopes.
If Robinson hasn’t gotten the message yet, it’s clear that Spoelstra and Haslem won’t be afraid to give it to him again in Game 3.