On a night when the Miami Heat hosted the team with the NBA‘s worst record and shot over 60 percent from the field, you would expect Miami to have run the Utah Jazz out of the building. Thanks to tremendous efforts by Chris Bosh, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, the expectations were fulfilled.
James came up just an assist and a rebound short of a triple-double as he finished with 30 points, nine assists and nine rebounds. James might have accomplished the feat if not for twisting his left ankle near the end of the third quarter, causing him to miss almost six minutes of the game.
Bosh added 20 points and six rebounds to complement Wade’s 27 as the Big Three accounted for 77 points, leading the Heat to the 117-94 victory. It’s the second time in as many games that Miami has won thanks to large efforts from its All-Star trio.
On Saturday night at home against the Cleveland Cavaliers, the combination of Bosh, James and Wade were good for 71 points leading the Heat to a 114-107 win. For all the efficiency on offense, as Miami has shot over 55 percent in both games from the field, the defensive consistency is still a concern.
During tonight’s game, the Jazz actually went into halftime with a 50-47 lead thanks to a 30 point second quarter. The Heat then went on a 10-1 run to start the third quarter and never looked back, but the first half was a reminder that the intensity and effort on defense for Miami aren’t always at their highest levels.
Heading into Wednesday night’s home game rematch with the Indiana Pacers, the Heat will need to maintain their high level of offensive execution and find a way to play 48 minutes of high-level defense. Miami held Indiana to just 19 points in the first half of last week’s game on the road, then allowed the Pacers to score 71 in the second half to take the 90-84 win.
If Miami’s Big Three can find a way to combine for 70 plus points for the third straight game against Indiana on Wednesday night, they will stand a good chance to even the score with the Pacers and send a message that they are still the team to beat in the Eastern Conference.