Mar, 25, 2012; Oklahoma City OK, USA; Miami Heat small forward LeBron James (6) stands on the court with Oklahoma City Thunder small forward Kevin Durant (35) during the first quarter at Chesapeake Energy Arena Mandatory Credit: Richard Rowe-US PRESSWIRE
The Miami Heat visited the Oklahoma City Thunder Sunday night, in a game that featured 4 of the top 6 scorers and arguably the largest collection of talent in the NBA.
Miami uncharacteristically struggled on the defensive end throughout, allowing the Thunder to shoot 67% in the 1st half. Oklahoma City would close the 2nd quarter on a 12-2 run and go into the half with a 60-49 lead.
With Mario Chalmers in early foul trouble, the Heat played without a point guard for several stretches of the 1st half. Dwyane Wade and Lebron James combined to score 24 first half points and Miami was able to shoot 57%.
The Heat as a team struggled to control the ball, giving up 11 of their 21 turnovers in the first half. Oklahoma City capitalized off Miami's sloppy play with 10 1st half fast break points.
Dwyane Wade got hot in the third quarter and fought to keep Miami close. He hit three 3-pointers including a near full court buzzer beater that had the Heat down 11 going into the 4th.
That was as close as they would get, as Miami just continued to have defensive lapses and continued to give up points including back to back dunks from Kendrick Perkins. The Heat just appeared to be disengaged throughout the game.
Surprisingly Dwyane Wade had no shot attempts in the 4th quarter, despite being relatively the only Heat player with the hot hand. He would finish just 6-10 for the game with 22 points, 4 rebounds and 4 assists.
Lebron James never seemed to be in rhythm tonight but did finished with 17 points and 7 rebounds. The Thunder shadowed Lebron and clogged the paint, forcing perimeter shots and protecting the interior.
Despite shooting an efficient 6-11 for 18 points, Chris Bosh was relatively quiet throughout.
The Miami Heat play the Indiana Pacers tomorrow night but will get a chance to seek revenge against Oklahoma City on April 4th, when the Thunder visit American Airlines.
- The Heat and Thunder shot a combined 63% in the first half, the highest 1st half display this season
- Kevin Durant almost recorded his first career triple double with 28 points, 9 rebounds & 8 assists
- Mario Chalmers is now shooting 5-23 in his last 4 games
- Lebron james ran into Derek Fisher in the 4th quarter and seemed to hit his injured elbow
- Serge Ibaka had more points than Lebron James and Chris Bosh (19)
- The Heat gave up 21 turnovers
- Thunder shot 52% for the game
- The Big 3 combined for 15 of the teams 21 turnovers