Quantcast 2013 NBA: Miami Heat

 

Heat Prove They Can Win Without LeBron, Bosh Comes Up Big

 

Chris Bosh showed his all-star mettle with a go-ahead three pointer to give the Miami Heat a 108-107 win over the Portland Trailblazers in the Moda Center on Saturday night. With 7 seconds left, Dwyane Wade drove to the basket, drew the double team, then threw a no-look behind the back pass to Bosh, who knocked down a deep three, topping off his 37 point, 10 rebound performance.

After missing three consecutive open jump shots down the stretch, Bosh kept his composure and converted on two critical three point shots to keep his team in the game and set up his final, game-winning three. On that final Miami possession, Eric Spoelstra drew up a conservative play, but Bosh overruled him and demanded he get the ball for a three pointer. He showed the basketball world that he’s not afraid to take a chance, and that his buzzer beater three against San Antonio last year was not a fluke.

The Heat were without LeBron James, and despite poor performances from Wade and Ray Allen, were still able to defeat a healthy Trailblazers squad that was firing on all cylinders. Wade was 8-19 and Allen went just 1-6 from three point land. Portland shot lights out in the first half, and at one point was leading by 9, but Miami was able to stay close, behind Bosh’s leadership and key supporting performances from role players, including a near-triple double from Mario Chalmers.

Norris Cole scored 11 points on 5-7 shooting, and picked up the slack on the defensive end against Damian Lillard. Cole got to the basket time after time and was able to finish. Rashard Lewis made 4 of 5 field goal attempts and went 2-2 from long range, and also had a critical steal and fast-break finish late in the game. Michael Beasley shot 50% from the field for 12 points and grabbed 6 rebounds.

The Heat were able to keep Portland from dominating on the boards, and they sent a powerful message to the rest of the league by taking down a team that was tied for the NBA’s best record. They did it without LeBron James, who was out with a strained groin, and Chris Andersen, who sat out with general body soreness. Miami’s inside offensive game was nonexistent, but on defense they were able to keep Portland’s bigs in check, including Meyers Leonard and Robin Lopez, who are both over 7’0, and Lamarcus Aldridge and Joel Freeland at 6’10 and 6’11.

Coming into this season, there were serious doubts as to whether the Miami Heat would be able to pull off the three peat, with the Indiana Pacers threatening in the East and the continued dominance of the West, but this win proved the Heat absolutely have it in them to bring home another championship. If a depleted Miami team missing its best overall player and crucial defensive big man can beat a healthy Trailblazers team, it is scary to think about what they will be able to do come playoff time if they’re completely healthy and possibly have Greg Oden contributing off the bench.

By: Jason Dobkin
Pro Basketball Fans Writer

 


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