The Miami Heat reached into their bag of tricks last night in Washington, wooing fans and capturing the attention of the arena, Wizards included, with an array of flashy dunks and drives combined with some big time scoring from role players. It started in the first half, when Dwyane Wade decided to take over the 2nd quarter and make impressive play after play.
First came an ally-opp to LeBron, and as often as they happen, that doesn't take away from the spectacular nature of each and every one. Wade continued scoring, and shortly would make possibly the play of the game. He started by splitting a pair of Wizards defenders with a behind the back move, then making a spin move to get around another Wizard before flipping the ball over his head and banking it in. Totally insane.
The next play was one that left every seat in the house empty. D-Wade came flying down the floor on a fast break. He took the ball and gave LeBron the most ridiculous underhand scoop pass, and James elevated like nobody else could, grabbing the ball in mid-air and slamming it home. It was a toss that most players couldn't have reached, but LeBron James isn't most players.
With the assistance of LeBron, D-Wade had a stellar run between the 2nd and 3rd quarters. He either scored or assisted on 20 straight points of the Heat. You also cant discount the game of Chris Bosh, who had his best game in a couple weeks, coming away with 24 points and 11 rebounds.
Besides the Big 3, Heat fans had to love what they saw out of a couple of key role players. First it was Shane Battier, who is suddenly playing with a confidence we haven't seen from him all season. He scored a season-high 15 points on 6-of-9 shooting, including making 3-of-6 from downtown. He also contributed across the board with 5 rebounds, an assist, a block and a steal.
You also can't discount the 8 points from a seemingly more confident Norris Cole. He was more aggressive then usual, getting to the foul line twice and hitting all 4 of his free throws. He hadn't been to the foul line in his previous six games. Then there was the 12-rebound effort of Udonis Haslem. Nobody in the NBA comes off the bench and rebounds as well as Udonis, and I doubt many can provide the same level of defense as well.
Mike Miller hit another pair of triples and is shooting 51.3% from downtown. As a team the Heat only missed 2 of their 23 free throws. This was a game where the Miami Heat flexed their muscles a bit. Granted, the game had its highs and lows, but the highs were ones that will get on Sportscenter's Top 10. There are several different ways that the Heat can win games, and this is by far the most entertaining.