Dwyane Wade and Udonis Haslem both found themselves in the starting lineup. Udonis was actually the first player to get on the board too. The Heat were competitive early with Justise, and Kelly Olynyk both doing work. Kelly really works well with Justise, it makes sense that he slumped during Justise’s injury a couple of weeks ago.
The man of the hour, Dwyane Wade started slow going 0-4, he got things together and went into his bag of tricks for some beautiful baskets and assists. He’d play the entire first quarter and rack up 6 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists.
The Heat were competitive to start, but the Nets would push to get on a run to go up by 9. They’d continue to build on that with some strong play, setting the Heat back by double digits.
The Nets dominated with the Miami reserves struggling to score, The Heat defense just had no answers for Brooklyn as D’Angelo Russell rained down threes and the Heat fell behind 19.
To be honest, the Heat just didn’t look like they were out to win, while the Nets were in place to lock up the sixth seed and playing hard. A week ago, I would have told you this game could be for all the marbles, instead the Heat appeared emotionally exhausted.
That’s not to say there weren’t some good plays in the quarter. Derrick Jones Jr. put down an electrifying putback slam, and Bam also had a solid go ahead dunk. DJJ had multiple slams in this quarter, so much so that I thought he was making a real effort to take down the rim.
Wade checked back in around the 4:30 mark and immediately dished an assist to Bam for a huge slam! He’d also hit a great fadeaway, and take a couple opportunities to display his amazing footwork and throw a couple more alley oops (even one to Duncan Robinson!).
Wade opened the third quarter with the Heat starters, but the Heat were unable to get things going. The Nets increased their lead to 27. Still, Wade spent the time on the court continuing his crafty scoring moves and getting his scoring total into double digits and that’s all we can really ask for.
Duncan Robinson had a few moments for the Heat, hitting some beautiful looks and getting into double digits as well. He has a lot of potential, Heat fans should be excited about his development this summer.
Wade would get a triple-double with an assist going to none other than Udonis Haslem. It was a special moment for the two Heat legends.
Miami was firing to start the fourth, extending their scoring run to a 22-9 run and doing some damage from beyond the arc. Bam even managed to hit a three!
The crowd was roaring with “We Want Wade!” chants and their prayers would be answered at the 7:20 mark with Wade returning to the game to an eruption in applause. He’d pick up where he left off, shooting fade aways and embarrassing the defense. He’d even knock in some shots from beyond the arc.
During all the excitement Miami managed to claw back within nine, but it wouldn’t last with Shabazz Napier and others running up the score. The Heat would ultimately lose.
As the game came to a close Wade dribbled out the clock, put the ball down and raised his arms to a huge ovation. He’d finish with 25 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists. A fitting end to the career of the best player in franchise history. An NBA without Dwyane Wade, I don’t think I or anybody else is ready for that. He’ll be missed by all, especially Heat Nation.