It wasn't pretty, but the Miami Heat were able to escape Michigan with another tough road win on Wednesday night. In a game where defense was being played at a premium, Miami was able to get some key late scores from LeBron James and Chris Bosh while holding the Pistons to zero points over the last 1:32 of the game. The Pistons trailed 90-80 before going on a late 12-0 run to take what would end up being their final lead of the night. Detroit's last bucket came with 92 seconds left, a Jonas Jerebko triple that put the Pistons up by 3.
Miami held the home team scoreless from that point on, forcing the Pistons to go 0-of-3 from the field and 0-for-2 from the foul line while turning the ball over twice during the final minute-thirty two. LeBron James would take advantage, going 6-for-6 from the foul line in the final minutes to send the Heat to the win column. Even though the Heat have won their last two games, some time off will be just what the doctor ordered.
Over the last two games I've gotten the feeling that the Heat are running a big on fumes, not getting out in front of their opponents or dominating the areas of the game (fast break, three-point shooting) that they usually dominate. Miami now gets a day to rest before playing their next three games at home, starting with the New York Knicks on Friday night.
Dwyane Wade missed his 9th game of the season, and his 6th consecutive game after suffering a right ankle sprain against the Nuggets a couple weeks ago. Early on against the Pistons is was Chris Bosh who stepped up, hitting his first seven shots of game and finishing with 27 points. If Bosh got the game started for Miami it was LeBron who finished it. James sealed the win by going 6-for-6 from the foul line in the final minute of the game. He made 13-of-14 from the charity stripe during the game.
- LeBron James finished with 32 points, 6 rebounds and 7 assists, a solid all-around night for the king.
- James also went 13-of-14 from the foul line, leading the way for his teammates to make 22-of-25 from the charity stripe.
- Austin Daye scored a career-high 28 points for the Pistons. His previous high was 22.
- Chipping in with 10 points off the bench was Mike Miller. He and Norris Cole (9 pts) were the only Heat reserves to score against the Pistons.
- Miami certainly was more focused then they were last night against Cleveland. The Heat turned the ball over just 11 times while dishing out 24 team assists.
- The Heat scored 10 fast break points. Still well below their season average of 18 but an improvement over the 4 in their previous game.
- Mario Chalmers was very productive, scoring 16 points and hitting 3-of-5 from downtown. He added 3 rebounds, 4 assists and a steal.
The Heat are now off for a day before beginning a very tough 3 game homestand. It begins on Friday when the New York Knicks come to town, then on Sunday the Chicago Bulls will play the Heat for the first time since last year's Eastern Conference Finals. Should be a great weekend of basketball!