I love weekends like this- lots of energy in the Central Indiana area as the 500 and everything that
surrounds it continues to roll along and the Pacers get set to host the Heat for Game 3.
The Pacers closed out the Heat last night on the shoulders of Hibbert and George's big games. Of course, the Heat really have no one who can match up with Hibbert, so that helps both he and George- James probably should be guarding George all the time, but since they need Bron's strength and size underneath to help, George will have Battier or someone else on him regularly. But on one play yesterday, James was guarding him and got flat-out beaten. The end result was the Birdman getting embarrassed, which was nice to watch (pictured).
I've admitted to not being much of a Pacers fan...or being a fan of the NBA...BUT, rooting against the Heat and James is a no-brainer for me. The fact that they're playing a team that I used to root for in the go-go 90s makes games like last night's fun.
My suggestion for the NBA is what it's always been (for the MLB, NASCAR and NHL too): contract. Make the season shorter, get rid of the fat, get rid of a few teams if you have to...the talent pool becomes higher octane, the games become more important and fans will be left wanting more. Basic economics, really. But what do I know...I'm just a guy who dislikes the NBA.
If you read my post about the field for the 500 earlier this week, you saw that Briscoe was my darkhorse pick. But, the only incident during practice yesterday was a fire in the tail of Briscoe's car during the last lap of practice. I believe it was a gearbox fire after initial reports said it was his engine.
That's the only way I could explain that he was in the pit competition with the same car (I saw no "T" designation or alternate number). If anyone's heard differently, sound off- I was at the track, so couldn't receive updates on what was happening and couldn't hear Calabro where I was seated.
The good news is his car should be ready for the race and he'll be in the same spot in the field.
Closest finish EVER?
The Indy Lights race was dominated by Andretti's Carlos Munoz. Munoz, of course, is starting in second for tomorrow's 500.
He was out in front of the small field for the 100 mile race yesterday in one of the dominative Mazda-powered machines. If you're not familiar with Indy's new Carb Day format, it's comprised of practice for the big cars, an Indy Lights race and then the traditional pit contest (which Penske's Castroneves team won).
But, after Munoz's dominance, the second place and third place drivers all swung around in three to make a final move as they approached the start/finish line. The dynamics of these cars are like NASCAR in the simple fact that drafting really matters and if you don't have a "dance partner" it's tough to win.
But, the top-3 blasted a hole in the air, and the fourth place car (at the time), Peter Dempsey, sling-shotted around all of them to win by the narrowest of margins.
The .0026 margin of victory was the closest race ever at Indy...but I would bet that no race, anywhere, in any circuit has had four machines this close as they crossed the start/finish line. The cars were going around 190 mph at the end of the race, so having four noses within a ten-foot range is impressive...
Check for yourself: