Jordanesque? That’s what a lot are saying. LeBron James (35 points) contributed all over the court in Miami’s 101-93 Game 4 win. This wasn’t about winning. It was merely surviving, making it through an overtime game where Wade didn’t play well and the Bulls refused to die. This was a test of wills, and earlier this season who would’ve ever guessed LeBron would win that game? It wasn’t exactly Jordanesque, but he was the difference again as Miami inched to within one win of the NBA Finals … In the final few minutes of both regulation and overtime, LeBron and Rose (8-for-27 from the field, 23 points, seven turnovers) faced each other up and it was on. Twice, ‘Bron forced the MVP into tough step-back J’s that were off on Chicago‘s final two possessions in regulation. James had his shot to win it, but basically ran over Ronnie Brewer for an offensive foul. Yet in overtime, he made the big plays while Rose coughed it up, his biggest turnover of the night resulting in a Wade layup that pushed the lead to six with a minute left. From there, LeBron hit another pull-up J (even though he traveled) before Wade came out of nowhere on the other end to block Rose’s shot. As it was on its way out of bounds, ‘Bron dove and made an incredible save. That possession defined who Miami is: selfless and angry, with a maniacal defensive intensity that never wavers against anyone, whether it’s the MVP or Omer Asik. Now while all the stars had their moments – even Chris Bosh (22 points) hit some huge shots – it was the role players that got them there. Mike Miller (12 points, nine rebounds) and Udonis Haslem (nine rebounds), two players we weren’t sure would even play in this series, were huge in the second half. Miller hit the glass, and hit a floater with three minutes left to knot it at 80. On the ensuing possession, Haslem drew a charge on Joakim Noah (and later on Rose) … While he stepped up late, where was D-Wade (5-for-16, 14 points) all night? He was talking terrible fading bank shots seemingly every time he touched it. Most of his shots in the second half weren’t even close. Give credit to Brewer and also Keith Bogans. Bogans might be Road to Perdition to Bruce Bowen‘s Goodfellas, but sometimes, you just gotta roll with what you got … Chicago immediately jumped out, 19-8. Bosh picked up two quick fouls, and Luol Deng (20 points) and the Bulls’ energy were on a different level than in Game 3. The Heat shot 5-for-18 in the first quarter with just one assist and yet after LeBron went on a personal 8-0, it was just a three-point deficit. In the second quarter, the Heat turned the intensity up and made it nearly impossible for the Bulls to score. Rose was working so hard on every possession. Whether he was splitting the pick-n-roll or trying to dribble around the helper, he would get in the lane and have to shoot a floater with three guys on him. On the other end, the Big Three took turns. Early it was LeBron, then Bosh got involved and then Wade came back pissed off at a sloppy start and found some easy baskets. After they trailed by 11 early, the Heat hit the visitors with a 29-9 run. Rose did break free near the end of the second quarter for a fast-break dunk, going right by Mario Chalmers and cramming one plus the foul. It must’ve been those 9.8 ounces. Then on the following possession, Rose split a double-team and dropped a sledgehammer on Joel Anthony‘s head. Plus one. That’s one of those plays where you should just get out the damn way. The only surprising part was Boozer not yelling “Gimme that s#$%!” Goran Dragic, move over. You have company … Down three with under five minutes to go, Miami caught a huge break when the officials charged Carlos Boozer (20 points, 11 rebounds) with a flagrant foul on Bosh. It resulted in a four-point possession (two Bosh FTs, a jumper by Miller) to take the lead … Best part of watching the Bulls with the Pops is hearing him groan whenever Noah (14 rebounds) shoots … So this is what the Heat were supposed to look like when they all came together this summer? A few months ago, no one would’ve believed this scenario. This was the dream … TNT must’ve moved Inside the NBA into the arena for Chuck‘s safety. The Miami fans were ready to destroy him … Somehow we missed it yesterday, but it was Tracy McGrady‘s 32nd birthday. We need a “We Reminisce” piece, but for now check out this ridiculous mix … The National Basketball Players Association filed an unfair labor practices complaint against the owners yesterday. Basically, they’re claiming the owners are delaying the negotiations and making crazy demands. Not a good sign at all as we get closer to the summer … We’re out like Joel Anthony’s manhood.
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