x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

In Miami, boo-hoos have replaced the boos

As if they were not having enough trouble, Heat have found themselves the object of ridicule after their coach's comment that players have been crying in the locker room.

It is a secret place, the land of tears. Unless your coach blabs about it to the world.

As if they were not having enough trouble, the Miami Heat found themselves the object of ridicule this past week when Erik Spoelstra, the coach, told the media after a fifth consecutive loss that "there are a couple of guys crying in that locker room right now".

The reaction was off the charts. The big, bad Heat, crying in their locker room.

Phil Jackson, the Los Angeles Lakers coach, said: "This is the NBA: No boys allowed. Big boys don't cry.

"But if you're going to do it, do it in the toilet where no one can see."

The next day, Spolelstra said his comments were taken out of context by the media and it was "a classic case of sensationalism".

Heat guard Dwyane Wade's comment that "the world is better now" because Miami is struggling also did not thrill many.

Stan Van Gundy, the Orlando Magic coach, said: "My suggestion would be if you don't want the scrutiny, you don't hold a championship celebration before you've even practised together", as it was the Heat who introduced LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Wade this off-season like models down a runway, complete with pyrotechnics.

It was reap what you sow time, although the Heat were feeling better after holding off the Lakers on Thursday. No word if that particular loss left the Lakers in tears, though somebody might want to check the toilets.