Photo by Issac Baldizon/NBAE via Getty Images
Firstly, my apologies for the terrible pun there. I’ve had a migrane for most of the past 24 hours (only now it’s beginning to clear up) and was relying on various glitchy and dubiously legal streams for today’s games, so I’m not exactly on top form. Never mind – the show must roll on.
3 Points – Derrick Rose. Indiana played hard throughout this whole game and showed some nice signs, but ultimately they had no answer to Rose. The scary part? Not many other contending teams in the East do (Boston, and…that’s it). His stat line (36 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists) doesn’t even tell the whole story. It’s like he watched Chris Paul decimate the Lakers yesterday and decided he had to one-up that.
The only thing that upsets me a bit about Rose’s game is that he’s so dominant as a scorer at times he forgets that he’s got as natural a passing touch as any PG in the league not named Chris Paul. But when he’s as effective as he’s been for this entire season, hacks like myself have no right to complain.
2 Points – Chris Bosh. I had picked the Sixers to push Miami for the whole 7 games in our Playoff Preview simply because I didn’t think that LeBron and Wade could do everything every game. I had honestly forgotten about Bosh, who’s performance for most of this season made me wonder why we referred to the Heat’s Big Three as opposed to the Big Two ft. Chris Bosh.
Robd said it best in the Playoff Preview – if the Heat are gonna win a title this year (which has to be their goal) they need Bosh to be a force on both ends and on the glass. He did it this game (21 points and 11 rebounds) – now the onus is on him to repeat. If he does, Miami can win this series 4-0. If not, my prediction for a seven game affair might not be so dumb.
1 Point – Dwyane Wade. This is my Man Point. As I mentioned at the start, I’ve had a migrane for most of the past day and I’ve had problems with them for most of my life. When I get them, I literally can’t do anything useful. I had to get my old coach to take me out of a crucial fourth quarter once because I could hardly see the court (thankfully we won anyway). For Wade to play an NBA playoff game while battling the same problem and not be a complete libaility…I have to give him the final point over LeBron here even though LeBron was the Heat’s highest scorer and go-to guy.
LeBron James – As I mentioned earlier, Bron-Bron was the Heat’s main guy this game and would have gotten the points had Bosh not stepped up and Wade delivered a manly performance like he did.
Carlos Boozer – 17 points and 16 rebounds is nothing to shake your head at. If Carlos Boozer is your team’s No.2 guy on offense and you have guys who can cover for him defensively (as the Bulls have with Noah) you’re in pretty good shape.
Evan Turner – The Sixers rookie hadn’t played much lately, but showed he’s worthy of getting more PT as the playoffs go on with an 15 point, 6 rebound game in just 25 minutes. This kid will come good once Doug Collins figures out how to use him properly.