Game One of the 2014 NBA Finals took place last night and it will largely be remembered for the insanely hot conditions at the AT&T Center following an air-conditioning malfunction.
Temperatures reached 90 degrees fahrenheit during the Spurs 110-95 victory over the Miami Heat with LeBron James forced out of the game late in the fourth quarter due to cramp.
The arena offered the following explanation for the unusual conditions:
"An electrical failure for the power that runs the AC system in the AT&T Center has occurred. We are continuing to work on resolving the problem. We apologize for any inconvenience."
While a simple technical fault seems the most plausible reason, that did not stop some from suggesting that foul-play might be at hand from the home team with Twitter the platform for conspiracy theorists.
With LeBron James knowing to have suffered from cramps in the past and the Spurs looking to gain any advantage against their rivals at the outset of the 2014 NBA Finals suggestions arose that perhaps the Spurs had borrowed a tactic once used by the Boston Celtics during their TD Garden heydays.
The Celtics reportedly turned up the heat in the 1984 Finals against the Lakers thus giving them an advantage. But surely the Spurs and Heat were both forced to play in conditions they were not used to on Thursday night so the conspiracy lacks legitimacy?
Well that would be the logical way to deal with such accusations but, as we all know, conspiracy theorists are not the most logical of individuals.
In their minds the Spurs may have had days to prepare knowing hot temperatures were to be expected and knowing the wily ways of Gregg Popovich could the legendary coach have sunk to knew lows?
Well the sane basketball fans will tell you no. We know that it was a engineering error that will be fixed by Game Two but the events of Game One certainly ensured the re-match between the two teams started off on a dramatic footing.
The story of the air-con in Game One is one that will be added to the rich paragon of NBA Finals folklore regardless of how crazy it sounds to suggest anything untoward was at hand.