Chalmers Emerging as HEAT’s 3rd Option?
The big question after the Heat lost Chris Bosh was who would emerge to help fill in his offensive production. Obviously (LeBron) James and (Dwyane) Wade would receive more touches and score more points but a two-man attack wasn’t going to be enough in and of itself to keep advancing in the postseason. Various Heat players have stepped up since Bosh went down, including (Udonis) Haslem and (Shane) Battier.
But Chalmers seems ready to be the third guy. He’s raised his postseason scoring average from 10.5 points with Bosh to 13.1 points without Bosh. He’s also shooting better overall from the field since Bosh went down: 44.6 percent, up from 40 percent.
Chalmers had his most important offensive game of the 2012 postseason on Wednesday, scoring 22 points, grabbing 4 rebounds and dishing 6 assists while shooting 8-for-16 from the field. (It wasn’t his highest-scoring game of the postseason; he scored 25 points in an ugly Game 3 loss to the Pacers).
A major issue for Chalmers is that his 3-point shooting has been up-and-down throughout the playoffs. Look no further than the fact that he missed all six of his treys in Game 1 against the Celtics after going 3-for-4 in the closeout Game 6 win over the Indiana Pacers. Given that he’s not a primary ball-handler all that much with James and Wade on the court, sometimes players in his position will let their outside shooting dictate their entire contribution on a a given night.