The first quarter was like watching them try to play basketball in the sand. It was one of those ‘you can tell they've been off for a week' type of deals. I was impressed with Beasley's start on D, swatting away two shots in the first two minutes. I got the feeling that D-Wade was trying to do too much, dribbling himself into trouble several times and either missing his shot or just turning the ball over. He started by missing 5 of his first 6 shots, and despite having a 6-point lead late, the Heat took just a 2-point lead into the 2nd quarter.
As was the story in their last two games, the Heat reserve lineup (that includes J-O) extended the lead. In the first 2+ minutes of the quarter, Miami pumped their lead from 2 to 8. That included another triple from Daequan Cook, a 27-foot line drive. The reserves would put up a 14-3 run in the first half of the 2nd quarter. It helped that Philly was hitting under 35% of their shots, but you won't hear me complaining.
The lead would shrink to 11 when halftime rolled around, but the Heat still held Philly to just 35% shooting and 0-for-7 from 3-point range. Michael Beasley responded to a very quiet first half by scoring the first 6 points for the Heat in the 2nd half. The starters would find their stride and the Heat used a 17-0 run to go up by 28. It was Jermaine early and then D-Wade got hot after starting the game just 3-for-10 from the field.
So yeah...the 4th quarter was just a formality, as it tends to be when one team holds a 27-point lead. Philly played hard down the stretch, but could only muster up a quarter in which they matched the 26 points scored by the Heat.
- Best game for Quentin Richardson in a while, scoring 10 and adding 10 boards in just 23 minutes. The trey he hit in the opening minutes definitely set the tone for Q.
- Jermaine O'Neal scored 20 points on 10-of-15 shooting. He added 6 rebounds and a block. Does anyone even remember the way he played last season with the Heat...especially when compared to this season?
- This was the Heat's 181st consecutive game with a blocked shot, the 3rd best streak in the NBA.
- Udonis came up 1 rebound short of his third straight double double, but he quietly leads that group of reserves that is turning thins around for the Heat.
- Daequan Cook is rounding out his game. He hit on 4-of-8 but took just three triples, making one.
Next up, the Nets up in the swampish Meadowlands of New Jersey. Dare I say...4 in a row?