Interesting start regarding the Miami Heat this season – if they’re leading at halftime during a home game, they’re going to win it. With a 13-0 record in that situation, it just means LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, pulling and pushing the rest of the team with them, just need to put more of an emphasis on the first 24 minutes.
Things are good for the Heat in the last week. After a couple of tough losses, came a big win over the Golden State Warriors, followed by LeBron James proving some kind of point against Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers. To complete the four-win streak, they went back home to face a couple of relatively easy games, beating the Toronto Raptors and the Detroit Pistons.
This was the kind of game when the big three, or more like the big two and the additional high-paid player do most of the offensive work, while the rest of the crew just chips in. No one really stands out, not even Ray Allen with 11 points, but no one completely fails at his job.
Dwyane Wade has been the real refreshing factor over the last three games. After getting more minutes of rest than usual in the road trip, Wade finished strong against the Lakers at the Staples Center (27 points), continued with a big game against the Raptors (30 points) and led the Miami Heat once again in the 110-88 win against the Pistons, this time scoring 29 points and handing out 7 assists. He’s also shooting 61% from the field in these games, pushing to the paint more and more, taking only one three pointer a game. Both James and Wade made a change last season, trying to become more aggressive and working harder to score from close range.
I’m being more active. I feel in a lot better shape than I was early in the year. Lately I’ve been put in the right position to be aggressive.
LeBron James? Nothing new. The three time MVP scored 23 points, adding 7 rebounds and 7 assists. Like Wade, he took only one three pointer in the game, leading the Heat to score 56 points in the paint. They struggled containing Greg Monroe; the Piston center finished with 31 points, but the rest of the guys were kept in check; none of their guards except for Will Bynum scored in double figures, and the Pistons as a team, excluding Monroe, shot only 40% from the field.
What’s next for the Heat? A Sunday game in Boston. The Celtics don’t look close to a team that can make any kind of impact on the Eastern race this season, but some wins mean more than just playoff positions. Like their proclamation wins against the Warriors and the Lakers, beating the Celtics in Boston once again after knocking that team out of the playoffs these last two seasons, not to mention the bad blood between some of the players, winning impressively in the TD Garden, extending the losing streak and nightmare for the Celtics, would be a great way to end the weekend for the NBA champions.