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Bosh gives the Heat a unique threat
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On April 22, 2013 @ 1:00 am In Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Sean Highkin, USA TODAY Sports
The Miami Heat did exactly what they were supposed to do on Sunday, handling business against the Milwaukee Bucks for a 110-87 win. LeBron James was spectacular, as expected. However, the importance of Chris Bosh to Miami’s victory cannot be overstated. The third-most famous member of the Heat’s Big Three has evolved into an indispensable part of Miami’s unstoppable offense, one that gives opponents nightmares.
Bosh scored his 15 points on a hyper-efficient 5-of-7 shooting. Three of those makes came on corner threes, which Bosh hasn’t hit at a high percentage this season. But he shot 2-of-2 from the right corner and 1-of-1 from the left.
Over the past two seasons, Erik Spoelstra has built a near-perfect offense around James that basically centers on surrounding him with shooters. If you double LeBron, you’re leaving some combination of Ray Allen, Shane Battier and Mike Miller open in the corners. And if you don’t double LeBron, well, he does this.
Bosh throws another wrinkle into any defensive game-planning for the Heat. Since he was converted from a power forward to a center last season, his floor-stretching ability has given the Heat a weapon capable of scoring inside and out. This season, he shot well from nearly every midrange zone on the floor.
During the regular season, even in the midst of a historic 27-game winning streak, the Heat at times seemed like they were cruising through games rather than fully engaging with them. When their offense is firing on all cylinders, it’s a scary thing to witness, and with James playing at all-time great levels, Bosh should get plenty of these open shots, no matter who Miami plays deeper into the postseason.
Ibaka takes charge: When the Oklahoma City Thunder traded James Harden to the Houston Rockets in October (a move USA TODAY Sports’ Sam Amick argues worked out for both teams), they effectively chose to make Serge Ibaka the third part of their core of talent instead. And although Harden is an all-world scoring talent, Ibaka rewarded the Thunder’s faith in him with a stellar performance at both ends of the floor … [For more on Playoff Putbacks: Chris Bosh gives the Heat a unique threat, click here.]
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