Paul George and the Thunder really brought it to the Heat to start the game, going on a 13-0 run. The Heat were cold from the field to start the game, missing their first four attempts and not converting on a bucket until the 6:55 mark thanks to Dwyane Wade.
After a strong game yesterday afternoon, Miami’s defense was horrid to start. Miami left many players open and were toasted because of it. Spo was forced to send Miami into a 2-3 zone, but even that was slow to stop the bleeding.
The Heat finally settled in leading to an electrifying Derrick Jones Jr. slam, and soon after a Goran three. With the Heat on their own 21-4 run, Miami managed to pull all the way back to take the lead. Goran was fantastic hitting all his shots and three threes, and driving to the hoop like the Goran of old.
Miami opened the second quarter with another Goran Dragic three which he was fouled on, leading to a four point play. Miami was rolling, with nearly everybody doing damage on the offensive end. James Johnson continued his effectiveness from yesterday afternoon, scoring seven points.
Derrick Jones Jr. slammed home another rim rocker of a dunk, as Miami built on their lead. The Thunder offense became anemic which was a testament to the Heat’s strong defense. Miami’s reserves were fantastic, outscoring the Thunder bench 39-2.
The Thunder would eventually recover with Paul George leading the charge, and Dennis Schroeder following him up.
Goran Dragic, Derrick Jones Jr, and Kelly Olynyk would return fire on the other end to keep Miami ahead. It was enough to keep the Heat up slightly (and Miami even found another 10 point lead), but as the quarter came to a close the Thunder was nipping at their heels. A James Johnson steal in the final seconds of the half would keep Miami ahead 3 headed into the second half.
Miami started off strong with a steal and Bam dunk, which they quickly followed up with a Waiters jumper to take a five point league. Where the Heat really succeeded tonight was off of steals. They were constantly jumping the lane to pick off passes which led to a lot of baskets for them on the other end.
The Heat hit a stride once again, and looked like they couldn’t miss, this time with Kelly Olynyk leading the charge.
Often times this season, Miami has chucked jumpers, darted into the lane for fouls not buckets and turned over the ball with terrible passes. That wasn’t the issue at all tonight as the Heat scored almost effortlessly and in rhythm. I haven’t mentioned him much, but Dwyane Wade continued his excellence tonight, he had 15 points at the four minute mark and really picked up the slack of the slumping Josh Richardson. He was also a menace on defense continuing his block streak.
Waiters’ ability to generate instant offense was on full display tonight, as he scored on some great plays. The Thunder found some life near the end of the quarter, but Miami would still take an eleven point lead into the fourth quarter.
The Thunder were hot to start scoring on two consecutive possessions, (one controversial bucket). Still Miami, didn’t slow down their offensive assault, as Josh Richardson finally found his legs. Wade completely exploited Raymond Felton knocking down some beautiful turn arounds in his face. Even in his final season, he complete out classes defenders.
Miami continued to be vicious on the defensive end, and the Thunder just had no response. Miami opened the floodgates on the other end, going on a 15-3 run and taking a 19 point lead.
Around the 6 minute mark, the Thunder showed some signs of life in an attempt to make a comeback. Luckily, Dragic would continue to breathe fire and silence the crowd. Still, despite Miami showing some highlight level offense, the Thunder wouldn’t stay down, coming back in the final two minutes led by Paul George.
With the crowd erupting, Miami would slow things down and that led to an amazing James Johnson put back dunk, and soon after another Bam dunk to silence things once again. The Thunder got desperate in the final seconds, chucking up threes, but it wasn’t enough.
The Heat would keep their composure in the final seconds and take a huge road win.