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What was with Miami’s final play? A Wade isolation three? Ugh.

Jun 4, 2012, 12:38 PM EDT

Dwyane Wade is shooting 29.2 percent from three in the playoffs. Which is better than he shot during the regular season. It is not what he does well.

So the fact Miami’s final play of overtime devolved into a Wade pull-up three to win it was poor. Bad design, not great execution, just not putting their best player in a position to play to his strengths. Of course, Wade missed the three, Boston won 93-91 and this series is knotted up 2-2 heading back to South Beach.

Look at that last play in detail.

Before it, Miami had made a good play. They knew Boston had a foul to give so Wade attacked hard a couple times to force the Celtics to use it. He drew a reach in foul and the result was Miami had 14 seconds to make something work — if you go early and not late you have time for an offensive rebound or to reset if needed (the risk is you score and your opponent gets the last shot, but I’d rather defend a last shot than try to make one).

Wade pops out off a down screen and gets the ball out high, and the first option was for Mario Chalmers, winding from the weak side off a couple picks, to try and pop free out by the arc on the right side, but Keyon Dooling read it well and cut the pass off. Friend of this blog Sebastian Pruiti points out at Grantland that Wade blew this by not coming back over hard to create the proper angle.

Then Wade waits for Shane Battier to set a pick, which switches Marquis Daniels on to him as a defender. Miami isolates Wade with shooters around the arc. Wade drives hard to his left, stops up and leans back right, watches Daniel go by on the fly-by block attempt, then takes the three that misses.

So many questions. First, should Wade shooting a three rather than attacking be in the script? It’s a clean look, but not what he does well. The Heat offense improved this season in part because Wade and LeBron James stopped shooing so many threes. (LeBron was fouled out at this point and couldn’t take, or pass off, the last shot).

Why doesn’t Wade just lean in on the Daniels fly-by and draw the foul? Well, trusting the officials in this game might have been a mistake. Why the three to win when he had to twist his body a little to get it off, leading to that awkward leg-kick shot?

It’s all moot. He got a look that the Heat will say they can live with. He missed it. Frankly, that was better than the disaster of a LeBron iso that they ran at the end of regulation, one that resulted into an ill-fated jump off to Haslem. But that doesn’t make it good.

But maybe Doc Rivers was right anyway, “Red wasn’t going to let that go in.”

  1. paulhargis53 - Jun 4, 2012 at 12:45 PM

    What’s wrong with Bozo, he hasn’t posted on this story yet? You’re slipping a bit you troglydyte.

  2. abchome - Jun 4, 2012 at 12:51 PM

    Bad design, bad execution, or simply bad play.

    • gmen4life33 - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:30 PM

      I agree Spo did a bad job designing late game plays last night (both in regulation and OT), but the Heat got a great shot in the end of OT. Was it by design? No, just Wade making his own shot.

      Down by 2, LBJ fouled out (so even if you tie, you dont have him in 2 OT), a wide open 3 is all you can ask for. But again, Spo has to do a better job drawing up plays. Why is Chalmers running at LBJ to end regulation? Does he want him to get doubled?

  3. passerby23 - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:01 PM

    No argument from me about the final play. He got a great look, had made a couple of 3’s already down the stretch, no Lebron available for another OT, and Boston prepared for a drive. And yes, could you have trusted the refs in that game? You take the best available opportunity.

  4. cfroggerton - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:06 PM

    Great play. Great three point shooter (Chalmers) had a screen drawn up for him and had an open look. Wade botched it by being out of position to make the pass. Chalmers bounced to the corner and was open again, but Wade still had no angle on the pass. Great play. Poor execution by Wade.

  5. j0esixpack - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:27 PM

    He did have a clean look – so from that perspective it was a well designed play. Of course part of the reason he had a clean look is because few would design a long shot for Wade… Someone else, maybe but not for him… Which could also explain why he was open and had a clean look.

    The point everyone should acknowledge is Celtic haters say the Celts fans are winning about bad calls and the Heat-haters are whining about bad calls too.

    Seems to me they’re both right,

    • moseskkim - Jun 4, 2012 at 5:08 PM

      Wade having a clean look at a 3 was not a result of the playcall. Wade pump faked and got Daniels in the air. Spo has a history of calling bad plays when he has 2 of the most lethal offensive players in the last 20 years

  6. canehouse - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:30 PM

    The Celtics did a very good job of denying Chalmers and Jones… Wade had a clean look… just didn’t execute.

  7. londonaiooo - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:32 PM

    Spolstra needs to work a play that doesn’t allow the C’s to triple Lebron. I know that LBJ hasn’t shone recently in clutch situations, but the Celtics team defense isn’t going to let him have an easy drive to the hoop to put them down 3-1. He can be a lightening bolt for negative press and opinion, but perhaps sometimes teams defend him well in the clutch, as opposed to LBJ just missing. I hope Spolstra doesn’t though, because I’m a C’s fan.

    • passerby23 - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:45 PM

      Teams defended Jordan in the clutch, didn’t matter. The difference is Jordan had a consistently good jumpshot that he was confident in taking when it mattered. He felt comfortable rising up over a double team and making a tough shot. You’re not going to get drives against double and triple teams at the end of games, which is why Lebron ends up kicking it out to someone else to do something.

      That’s the difference between the two. Jordan’s mindset was, “I’m going to rip your heart out.” Lebron’s is “I’ll try to create a shot and see what the defense gives me.”

  8. patsfanvt - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:33 PM

    that was obviously not the play. The actual play broke down. Any play in that situation would have the shot go up much earlier so that you can either get an off rebound or foul with enough time left to get another shot off should Boston miss the FT.

  9. cantonbound13 - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:36 PM

    LeBron & Wade run their own plays, they are uncoachable. That’s why they will never win a championship as teammates.

    • gmen4life33 - Jun 4, 2012 at 4:26 PM

      Dunno about that. If Coach Spo calls a play, I can see Wade/LBJ breaking it off. If Cach Riley, calls a play, those 2 are going to execute it. Riley has the rings, and the persona, that demands respect.

      Not saying Spo is a bad coach, but Wade’s outburt during IND game showed there isnt a great level of respect there. Im sure LBJ/Wade like their coach, but probably believe they know “better” than him.

      • heat256 - Jun 4, 2012 at 4:45 PM

        Actually, it’s documented that in the Finals in 2006, Wade blew off Riley’s play calling at times because he was feeling it and wanted to do it his way. just goes to show, when it goes right, it’s all gravy but when you miss, you are ripped to shreds over it.

      • gmen4life33 - Jun 4, 2012 at 6:52 PM

        I dont recall anything like that being documented, especially in late game plays, but ill take your word for it. Also, im not sure “going right” is the best way to describe the closeout plays for MIA in 06. It was more like Wade tripping on his own feet and getting pahntom calls by the ref……But Wade was amazing that series, just had a little help lol

  10. telergy - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:50 PM

    Spolstra is less clutch than LeBron when it comes to clutch time play calling. There’s no reason they should be 0-10 as a team last two years in those similar situations. Run a play the players can execute that will give them the best chance to score/win. It’s your job!

    You can blame LeBron for the last play of regulation for dribbling it into the defense instead of pulling up. The play was clearly designed for him to take the shot but he passed out of the situation again

  11. pistolpete0903 - Jun 4, 2012 at 2:42 PM

    Which is why these so called young ‘superstars’ are punks. They don’t keep defenses honest with their 3 point and jump-shooting ability. LBJ, Wade, Rose (atleast he is fairly new to the league and has really improved on his shot) will have a lot to learn.
    Just being fast and athletic will not take you far into the league.
    Take a cue from Pierce and Kobe (and I hate those two!!)

  12. ezmagic - Jun 4, 2012 at 3:18 PM

    The Cs did everything wrong in the 4th and OT to give that game to the heat. The heat suck and couldn’t pull it off lol HAHAHAHA funny how all the heat PU$$Y fans aren’t commenting today. I hate the Cs but hate the heat more. Go Cs lol

    • canehouse - Jun 4, 2012 at 5:55 PM

      yeah exmagic… how many seasons has your team been tinkering with Dwight’s back up band? Orlando is a joke… and always will be.

  13. rodge1 - Jun 4, 2012 at 4:07 PM


    My team lost last night, props to the Celtic players & coach. Your team & city will always suck.

  14. ss3walkman - Jun 4, 2012 at 4:48 PM

    Riley should have coached this team from the beginning. Eric is gone after this year. He has no excuse for his lack of coaching and designing plays.

  15. mungman69 - Jun 4, 2012 at 5:29 PM

    Maybe Boston just played great defense at the end, that’s what it looked like to me.

  16. reddolfan66 - Jun 4, 2012 at 6:55 PM

    Nobody care what a Mickey mouse fan thinks, you team is a joke you wish your team was like the HEAT loser that’s why your following the Heat and not the Magic pussy

  17. ajpurp - Jun 4, 2012 at 8:00 PM

    Spo simply isn’t a good coach, regardless of the stars you have you still draw up a solid play. Look at Doc and Phil Jackson, always had set design plays and it seems Spo just lets it go and says make something happen, which is just plain bad coaching. If the heat lose, no doubt he is gone next season.

  18. jjordannba - Jun 4, 2012 at 9:31 PM

    “but I’d rather defend a last shot than try to make one).” ____ And you’re the only one

  19. jjordannba - Jun 4, 2012 at 9:33 PM

    Miami Fan-Kurt even you’re whining about officials? Come on man

  20. canehouse - Jun 4, 2012 at 11:48 PM

    so waiting on the blog on the Spurs final play… i mean Popovich’s brillance is unmatched right? It comes down to defense… Boston denied and so did the Thunder!! VERY doubtful we will see anyone break it down like everyone put a microscope and laser on Miami’s final play.

  21. anhdazman - Jun 5, 2012 at 6:54 AM

    You couldn’t get a better look than that for the win. Remember, No Lebron, you’re on the road, two points down. Go for the win. Wade just flat out missed it.
    You want your superstar in that situation at the end of the game, I’m not sure what other scenario would be better?

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