Heat Miss Bosh in Game 2 Loss

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In what is becoming a trend in these Eastern Conference playoffs, the Heat and Pacers played a physical, chippy, defensive game that came down to the wire.  LeBron had another great game, once more dominating Danny Granger, but he missed key free throws that could have been the difference in the game.  Wade kept the Heat close in the 4th quarter with his work in the post against the slighter Indiana guards, but he came up short on his last drive to the rim with a shot that would have given Miami the tie with one possession left in the game.  Instead the Pacers’ George Hill secured the rebound, and the Heat were forced to foul.  Hill hit one of two, but the Heat were not able to convert on their last possession, and that was the end.

Having Bosh would have been very helpful on two important fronts.  Number one, the Pacers outrebounded the Heat by 10.  That’s a big difference in a three point game.  Bosh leads the team in rebounding in the regular season (tied with James actually).  And the Heat actually missed his ability to space the floor.  Wade and LeBron encountered a lot of bodies in the lane when they tried to drive, and Bosh is usually one of their pressure release pass out recipients, and at 6′ 10″ with nice touch, he’s a great option on a kick and shoot.  Having his length against West and Hibbert wouldn’t have hurt either.

I give big credit to the Pacers for never losing their cool as the Heat erased an 11 point deficit and took the lead late in the game.  Indiana kept running sets and playing controlled defense, and it paid off when the Heat came up short on their last three offensive possessions.  Now Indiana has stolen the home court advantage in the series.

Wouldn’t it be funny if the Sixers and Pacers met in the EC Finals?  I’m sure ABC and TNT would just love that!

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14 Responses to “Heat Miss Bosh in Game 2 Loss”

  1. boyer Says:

    I hope it’s pacers/sixers, but highly doubt it. But, who knows, Injurires are messing up nearly every team.

    Even with bosh out, the heat are still as deep as the pacers, and are still much more talented than the pacers. There’s no excuse for the heat to lose if lebron and wade are truly that good.

    Weird ending. Both teams missed many FTs, but lebron missing 2? You have to hit at least 1 there. This is where lebron and wade’s skill weaknesses come into play. They both missed several FTs down the stretch and missed many outside shots, while most of them were good looks. The pacers clogged the lane nicely.

    Lebron did well overall, but where was he in that final minute? Not only did he nothing, but he was nowhere near the ball. While chalmers is their best 3 pt. shooter, this is a problem for the heat. You don’t want to rely on your 5th or 6th best player to create his own 3 pt. shot for the tie.

    While james and wade look great together on fastbreaks, they’re not particularly that good together in the halfcourt. Maybe bosh and james are the best duo instead of james and wade, since bosh/james can compliment each other a lot better than wade/bosh, as james/wade have the same skill sets.

    • jpalumbo Says:

      I definitely agree that Bosh and James seem to compliment each other better, particularly in the half court. Missed free throws late in games is usually about losing focus, and that’s more a matter of exhaustion or nerves than it is skill level.

      If you’re a LeBron fan, the frustrating thing has to be that he does have the ability to create shots for himself – if you remember what he did against Detroit in 2007, Boston in 2008, Orlando in 2009, Chicago in 2011… he CAN create and complete high-pressure late game points for himself in the playoffs against great defense. It seems to be an issue of confidence or will power that holds him back. Kobe could be playing with a torn tendon in his hand and chewed up cartilage in his knee, and he’s still at least going to get involved in that last possession. Win or lose, he’ll do his part. No doubt. His confidence never wavers, and his strength of will is beyond question.

      Wade doesn’t lack for confidence or will, but he is more reliant on the officials. That has always been his greatest strength and his biggest weakness. He punishes the defense by attacking relentlessly, but when he isn’t getting whistles on his hard drives and post ups, his game really suffers.

      • pmadavi Says:

        Spoelstra needs to get out of their way. Setting up a last second play for Mario Chalmers is a chump move. You pay those two 15mil, in part, to take the big shots. Forget the percentages. You gotta live or die in the hands of your best player.

      • boyer Says:

        Lebron is a career 75% FT shooter, and has never been abover 78%. This isn’t necessarily a weakness, but it’s not a strength, and wade is barely better at the line. Lebron has missed many big FTs throughout his career. I agree it’s partially exhaustion and nerves, but it’s also part of his incomplete skill set. This is why teams can sag off of lebron and wade and clog the paint, unlike with kobe who demands more double teams, because lebron and wade are much more inconsistent perimeter shooters.

        Lebron is truly a weird player. Yes, he has had fantastic performances before in the playoffs, but I’ve never seen a player who is supposedly as great as he is shy away from big moments so often, and this dates back to the 06 FIBA game against Greece. He and team usa were fine when they were up early in the game, and he infamously said that greece didn’t know what to do. Ironically, when greece was digging in and eventually take the lead as the game went on, it was lebron who didn’t know what to do when his team was down.

        But, even at that, he was totally disengaged for several games of the 2010 c’s series and 2011 mavs series. There’s no excuse for that type of lack of effort. Everyone plays poorly sometimes, but at least try. When the stakes are the highest, I have little confidence in lebron.

        You’re right about wade, but once again, his lack of a consistent outside shot really hurts him in late-game iso situations.

        Forget about spoelstra. The heat had the ball a couple of times at the end, and if lebron is demanding and not shying away from the big moment, he would have the ball, but he doesn’t want to be in this situation much. And I would certainly want chalmers or battier shooting a game-tying 3 than lebron or wade. That was actually a brilliant play set up by spoelstra, not sure why you are criticizing him. Chalmers ended up shooting a wide open 3 that barely missed. And wade did get a layup on the previous possession, but missed. Can’t get much better looks than those.

        What really hurt was the heat failing to get the missed FT, and 6 seconds were lost as the ball rolled down the court. Otherwise, the heat would’ve had time to get a quick 2 instead of having to shoot a 3.

      • jpalumbo Says:

        You know who is decent in late game jump shot situations? Bosh. If James doesn’t want that shot, maybe they should run action to get Chris a look. He’s tougher to smother than Chalmers or Wade.

      • pmadavi Says:
    • pmadavi Says:

      Look again. That was not a good last second shot, and the Pacers sniffed out the play easily and drove Mario off the designed shot and made him take a really tough shot. I’d have a lot more confidence in Wade or LeBron deciding the game than anyone else on that team. At the very least, there is a chance they would get a start call. Mario’s not getting squat.

      • pmadavi Says:

        Not to mention Chalmers was 2-9 from the field and 0-3 from three point range up to that point. In fact, the only Heat to hit a three that game was Battier. I’m not sure what inspired Spoelstra to draw it up for Chalmers, but I’d say it was stupidity.

      • jpalumbo Says:

        It’s too bad Riley took a big dump on Stan Van Gundy’s lawn (though the more I hear, the more it sounds like that piece of backstabbery originated with Shaq Diesel), because his brother Jeff would probably fit this team really well.

      • boyer Says:

        I respect your opinion pmad, but you’re completely wrong here and I don’t think you understand just how difficult it is to make a 3 at the end of the game when you need a 3 to tie. It’s so much easier for the defense to defend. Very rarely can you get a clean look. Chalmers’ look is a very good clean look, not wide open, but still a great look. And the offense doesn’t know if the defense is going to foul them either. They have to play fast, and with very few seconds left, there’s not much chance for the offense to get anything good, and the heat actually did get a good look.

        After looking at the play again, it’s a brilliant play. While the first option is probably chalmers, wade has single coverage and could create his own shot. Battier spreads out hanging in the corner so wade won’t get doubled. If the pacers screw up going through the screens for chalmers and double chalmers, lebron is wide open, or if they double lebron, then chalmers is wide open. But, they played it perfectly, and chalmers still gets a great look.

        Wade and lebron were both missing lots of shots late in the 4th. Chalmers was struggling, but he or battier would be their best option. But, while battier is deadly from the corners, he’s not that good from 3 elsewhere, so it was smart to have chalmers shoot it there. It’s tough to get a corner 3 in that type of situation. The only reason I would have wade with the ball is because lebron seems to shy away from the big moments, and lebron is a better screener than wade. Wade is an awful 3 pt. shooter, and tough to create a good look 1 on 1. So, when I talk about skill sets, it’s important to understand, along with lebron seemingly afraid of the ball in many late-game situations.

        But, this is absurd to blame spoelstra for a brilliantly called play. If lebron actually wants the ball like a wade or kobe even though his outside shot is suspect, then yea, give it to him, but that’s not the case.

      • pmadavi Says:

        I understand how hard it is to get a good look at the end of the game. If that’s what you really think, then you obviously don’t respect my opinion. So don’t bother with the hedging.

        If your opinion is that drawing up a play for an ice-cold shooter when you have two superstars on the floor is brilliant, then I don’t know what to tell you – other than that goes against everything I’ve learned watching and playing basketball for the past 20 years.

      • pmadavi Says:

        Here’s some evidence to back my stance.

        http://www.82games.com/1112/CSORT11.HTM

        2011-2012 In the clutch, LeBron shot 27% from 3. Chalmers shot 17%.

      • boyer Says:

        Just because I disagree with you doesn’t mean I don’t respect your opinion, and it goes both ways. No need to get nasty, we were having a good discussion.

        The lakers game at detroit this year is a perfect example. At the end of regulation, kobe has the ball down 2, and is able to take 2 dribbles to his right to get to his sweet spot, and get off a shot, which he makes, even with Prince in his grill.

        But, at the end of OT, Kobe has the ball down 3, and can’t risk prince fouling him, so he’s going to have to shoot a ridiculously tough shot and misses.

        Now, compare that Kobe look with chalmers look. Chalmers was closer to the 3 pt. line and got off a clean look, a much better shot, and a well drawn up play.

        Now, I see your pt. that chalmers might not be the best option for you in that situation. However, for me, looking purely at 3 pt. pct. hardly tells the whole story. Kobe could only shoot ridiculously tough 3’s like he did against Prince this year, and miss them every time, but that doesn’t mean he’s not a good option or the best option that the lakers have in that situation.

        I would rather have a guy coming off of a screen and catch and shooting (which also makes it tougher for the defense to foul before the shot since there’s basically no time to do this) than a guy creating his own 3 pt. shot, especially when the defense knows he has to shoot a 3.

        And wade is an awful perimeter shooter. Lebron is ok, but still not good, and consistently shies away from big moments and often doesn’t want to shoot that final shot. I mean, lebron is often does great and wants the ball during the final minutes, but necessarily the final minute or final possession. So how can you trust him? If Kobe was on the heat, you can bet he’s telling spoelstra he wants the ball even if spoelstra wants the play for chalmers. Lebron doesn’t do this. This is more about lebron not wanting the ball than spoelstra sucking as a coach.

      • boyer Says:

        In hindsight, which spoelstra can’t use, chalmers wasn’t a good option, but I don’t see another good option. If the heat only needed 2 pts., then everything changes. Chalmers is the best option for coming off of a screen, or jones or miller. I might choose miller since he’s taller than chalmers, easier to get off a shot, but none of those 3 were doing well in the game. Wade wasn’t shooting well, and lebron had a subpar shooting game, and both of them missed their 3 pt. attempts as well.

        See, that’s the thing. Your argument is that the heat have 2 superstars, that one of them should shoot the ball. And yes, I partially agree with that, if one of those superstars is a reliable 3 pt. shooter and wants the ball, but neither of the heat’s superstars have these traits. And wade could’ve easily taken the ball, made his move, and shot the 3, but he didn’t. With everything being equal, I’d rather have a spotup shooter getting a good look than a very difficult forced 3 usually, even if it’s Kobe or Ray Allen.

        Even with lebron’s lack of consistent outside shooting, if I was a heat fan, I would want him to want the ball and take the initiative, but he often doesn’t do this, and that isn’t spoelstra’s fault.

        The final possession of games is different than the previous few minutes. I’ve seen lebron go off late in games many times to bring his team to have a chance to win the game, but then I’ve often seen him shy away from that last moment time and time again, not always, but often, and more often in thep playoffs.

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