Claremore Daily Progress

Sports

May 14, 2013

NBA PLAYOFFS: Heat take control of Bulls with 3-1 advantage

CHICAGO — The way this series is turning out, it's hard to believe the Miami Heat ever trailed the Chicago Bulls.

They're running away with the Eastern Conference semifinals, and another performance like this will end it.

LeBron James scored 27 points and the Heat nearly matched a franchise record for fewest points allowed in a playoff game, pounding the listless and short-handed Bulls 88-65 on Monday night to take a 3-1 lead in the series.

"We just worked as hard as we could on defense,'' Chris Bosh said. "After the Game 3 performance, we really didn't feel like we did a very good job. We just wanted to have more energy today and concentrate on our coverages a lot better.''

Well, how's this for a result?

The 65 points allowed were only two more than the all-time postseason low for a Miami opponent, and it was easily the worst offensive performance by a Chicago team in the playoffs.

Never before had the Bulls scored fewer than 69 in a playoff game nor 10 or less in a quarter during the postseason, but both those marks fell on a night when they were dominated on both ends of the floor.

Miami led by 11 at the half and put this one away in the third quarter, outscoring Chicago 17-9 in the period.

Now the Heat will try to wrap up the series at home Wednesday night, taking what they hope will be the next step toward a second straight championship.

They're in this spot because they shook off a loss in the series opener and haven't looked back.

Miami pounded Chicago in Game 2, coming away with its most lopsided playoff victory while handing the Bulls their worst ever postseason loss - and the Heat continued to roll from there.

James had his usual complete game with eight assists and seven rebounds Monday.

Bosh finished with 14 points after scoring 20 and grabbing 19 rebounds in Game 3, and the Heat won again despite another quiet night from Dwyane Wade (six points), whose right knee was bothering him again. He appeared to aggravate it on a fallaway jumper during the game but was able to return after getting re-taped.

"It's frustrating at times, but you just try to do what you can,'' Wade said.

Norris Cole also struggled with seven points after back-to-back 18-point performances, but the Heat had more than enough in this one.

They shot about 49 percent while the Bulls set a franchise playoff low at 25.7 percent. Chicago was particularly bad from the outside, going 2 for 17 from 3-point range.

The Bulls again were missing ailing Luol Deng and injured Kirk Hinrich (calf), and a team that kept finding ways to win despite being short-handed all season simply appeared to run out of steam, even though coach Tom Thibodeau rejected that idea.

"No,'' he said. "I think the thing is they're (Heat) a great team. We have to come out with great intensity - but we also have to make shots.''

There's no denying the Bulls have been in a tough spot all year with Derrick Rose recovering from knee surgery and just about every other major player sidelined at some point. They've been hit particularly hard in the postseason, too.

"They're in a tough situation,'' James said. "They've had some injuries and illnesses and whatever's going on. They don't have their full roster, but that's not for us to worry about. They beat a very good Brooklyn team (in the first round) without their full roster.''

Carlos Boozer had 14 points and 12 rebounds for his fifth double-double in the postseason, but was just 3 of 14 from the field. Jimmy Butler scored 12 and Joakim Noah grabbed nine rebounds, but it was a miserable night for Chicago - particularly Nate Robinson. With Cole and Mario Chalmers harassing him and the big men helping out, he missed all 12 of his shots and did not score.

He said he fell hard on his left shoulder on a pick-and-roll at one point, although he couldn't remember exactly when, and had it wrapped in ice afterward. Then he took off the wrapping and threw it hard to the floor.

"Go back to the drawing board and figure it out,'' he said.

Richard Hamilton scored 11 points in a rare postseason appearance, and the former All-Star guard made it clear afterward he's not thrilled with his reduced role.

"Lot of stuff in life you don't understand,'' he said. "This (playoffs) is what I was brought here for. To not be able play and help my teammates, it's hard, it's rough. But I try to stay positive. I don't try to rock the boat.''

Hamilton said he and Thibodeau have talked. Then, he reiterated, "It's hard to understand.''

 

1
Text Only
Sports
  • DSC_0237web.jpg Hrdlicka, Teter pour ‘heart’ into Zebra soccer program

    For the past four years, Claremore High School seniors Katelin Teter and Nick Hrdlicka have represented the ‘heart and soul’ of the Lady Zebra and Zebra soccer programs.
    The soccer duo will join seven other seniors on Friday night for Homecoming against Collinsville at Lantow Field.

    April 16, 2014 2 Photos

  • DSC_0014web.jpg 9 straight for Lady Zebras

    Claremore sophomore forward Bailey Steckline got the ‘hat-trick’ plus one Tuesday night in the Lady Zebras’ 10-0 win over Tulsa Memorial at  LaFortune Stadium.
    Steckline tallied two goals in the first half, and added two more in the second to complete her impressive night.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • DSC_0156web.jpg Tulsa Memorial holds off Zebras, 2-1

    Tulsa Memorial scored a pair of first-half goals  to steal the momentum away from the Claremore Zebras, as well as the 2-1 win Tuesday night in Metro Lakes Conference action at LaFortune Stadium.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • DSC_0015web.jpg BASEBALL: Whatley, Howe power Zebras past Tahlequah

    Claremore’s Matt Whatley has proven over the past four years that he’s one of the toughest outs in the Metro Lakes Conference.
    On Tuesday, Whatley went 3-for-4 with two singles and a triple while sparking the Zebras to a 12-2 win over Tahlequah in five innings at American Legion Park.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • BASEBALL: Dewey takes pair from Sequoyah

    It’s very difficult to win when you can’t score.
    Class 4A third-ranked Dewey blanked homestanding Sequoyah 7-0 and 2-0 in a district doubleheader on Tuesday, improving to 21-3 with a dominating two-hit pitching performance in the opener and a four-hitter in the nightcap.

    April 18, 2014

  • SOCCER: Sequoyah topples No. 15 Catoosa, 1-0

    Sequoyah boys soccer coach Bob Campbell had one phrase to sum up his feelings following the Eagles’ game with 15th ranked Catoosa at home Tuesday night.
    “We’re in the driver’s seat.’’
    Alex Bourgeois scored late in the first half and Sequoyah made it stand up for a 1-0 victory over the Indians in a showdown for the district lead.

    April 18, 2014

  • Jackson sprints Zebras to 1st place at OBU Relays

    Claremore senior sprinter Tyler Jackson felt the need for speed Wednesday afternoon at the Oklahoma Baptist University High School Invitational.
    Jackson notched a pair of first-place victories in the 200-meter dash and the 400-meter dash to help Claremore earn 130 points for top honors.

    April 18, 2014

  • BASEBALL: Arkansas Tech roughs up ‘Cats

    The Rogers State University baseball team had a disappointing finish in its home finale as No. 12-ranked Arkansas Tech blanked the Hillcats 11-0 Tuesday evening in non-conference action from the Diamond Sports Complex.

    April 18, 2014

  • BASEBALL: Southwest Baptist slips past NSU, 5-3

     The Northeastern State baseball team lost 5-3 to Southwest Baptist Thursday afternoon at Dobson Field.
     
    The RiverHawks (19-22, 15-18 MIAA) held a 3-0 lead early in the contest, but a late rally from the Bearcats (23-18, 19-13 MIAA) and costly errors from the visitors allowed the home team to secure the series-opening triumph.

    April 18, 2014

  • WOMEN'S TENNIS: Conference champion NSU lands top seed in MIAA tourney

    The No. 31-ranked Northeastern State women's tennis team has drawn the top seed in the 2014 MIAA Women's Tennis Championship, the league announced Thursday morning.

    April 18, 2014