April 24, 2016

Rex Chapman's big night

If hope is the true currency of fandom, then there is nothing more hopeful than a ball moving through space. In those handful of seconds, anything can happen—a first down, a 50-yard pass, maybe even a touchdown. In baseball, this is that ball sailing toward the wall, somewhere between being a home run or a pop fly. In basketball, this is the three-pointer. That moment, when the ball leaves the player’s hands and starts that long, slow arc toward the basket.

It feels like forever, and for a moment everyone on the court is powerless, a collection of grown men just staring at the same ball. Sure, two-pointers count. Nothing is taking the place of the dunk contest. But they don’t hang in the air an extra second, they aren’t worth that extra game-changing point, the one extra heart palpitation’s worth of, “Oh my God, is it going to go in?” It’s pure physics and also magic.

For one night, the Heat had that.



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