The urgency of tonights game has reached all the way to the Miami Heat’s front office. Pat Riley spoke privately with both Dwyane Wade and LeBron James this morning at the Heat’s shootaround in Boston.
Riley has always been notorious for being a master motivator. The memory which stands out the most involves a bucket of ice water.
With his Heat team down at halftime Riley said, “If you want to win a championship, you have to want it…” stopping midsentence and to the astonishment of his players, Riley completely submerged his head into the bucket.
Players looked on as seconds went by, then a minute and then over a minute. Finally Riley raised his head from the bucket, gasping for air before completing his sentence, “…like it’s your last breath.”
It is the type of locker room propaganda that sends chills throughout your body as goosebumps appear on your skin.
Riley understands the importance of tonight’s game. With a win, the Heat all but guarantee themselves moving on to the Eastern Conference finals. Lose, and the series is back at square one against a Boston Celtics team that has plenty of experience going deep into playoff series.
Neither Wade or James would comment of exactly what was said in their respective meetings with Riley, Wade did have this to say of Riley, “I like him in this role, he’s so much calmer.” Take a look at the video below for more.