Miami finished the game with 123 points, one of the highest point totals by an opponent in several years. Neither team has had any new injuries reported since Game 1. Not only did Miami use control of the paint to get out to the early advantage, but they also outshot one of the NBA’s best three-point shooting teams sparked by 3-of-3 shooting outside the arc from Luol Deng on his way to a quarter-best 14 points.
But the defense was atrocious. And Amare seems to be the best defensive option against Jefferson. Zeller, in particular, must be stronger.
All season long, Kemba Walker was the go-to guy for the Hornets.
“We just knew it was time to play Miami basketball”, said Whiteside. They’re so mature and their approach to the game is great. We didn’t have that intensity like they had.
“I feel like a lot of things that he scored, he got them on blown coverages”, Williams said. It was one of those games where the losers should probably just throw out the game tape.
“We’ve got to get ready for the next game“. Their record in the postseason hasn’t been a good one in recent years, they haven’t been past the first round since the 2001-2002 season.
“Just the fact that I’m out here playing [a lot of minutes] as a rookie on a winning team, that really means a lot”, Winslow said. We’ve been resilient all year.
James has played on 15 teams that took 2-0 leads in playoff series. That can’t happen. Point guard is the one spot in this series where you can clearly say Charlotte should have the advantage.
“I was feeling good about myself”, Wade recalled Monday after practice. “I have to set a toughness, a tone…” “It’s just different from what we’ve done”.
On the season, the Heat average 100.0 points, 44.1 rebounds and 20.8 assists per game.
Since that move, the Heat has been able to add veteran Dorell Wright and D-League guard Briante Weber.
While Charlotte shot just 6-17 from three-point range, the Heat hit nine of their 18 attempts from deep while garnering 27 assists relative to the Hornets’ 11, 42 rebounds to Charlotte’s 28, and forcing 11 Hornets turnovers while coughing up the rock on just six occasions themselves. Whiteside has spoken a few times, seemingly with appreciation, about how Spoelstra demands perfection from him and is trying to make him great. Deng’s renaissance come out of nowhere but was brutally efficient, as he nailed jumpers from all over the floor without anything the Hornets could do to slow him down.
The Charlotte Hornets had a breakthrough season, but they didn’t look like a real playoff contender in a 123-91 shellacking in Game 1 against the Miami Heat.
The other game being played on Tuesday is in Atlanta, where the Hawks and Celtics will play Game 2 after Atlanta held off a late Boston rally to win 102-101 in Game 1. It would also help if Jefferson can get him into foul trouble.
With a tough assignment in Game Two coming up Batum and the Hornets have their work cut out for them. As a team, the Heat shot a blistering 57.6 percent from the field and their 41 points in the first quarter tied a franchise playoff record. It’s doubtful Miami will get 52 combined points out of Deng and Whiteside in another game in this series.
Luol Deng goes off against the Hornets. That alone provides a chip in Miami’s shoulder concerning a potential conference finals series.