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Spoelstra calls Chris Bosh Heat’s ‘most important player’

Nov 18, 2012, 2:00 PM EDT

Oklahoma City Thunder v Miami Heat - Game Three Getty Images

PHOENIX — On a night when Lebron James was playing through illness and needed to save himself as much as possible, Chris Bosh provided the offensive support Miami needed to take care of business.

Bosh had 16 first-half points, and finished with 24 on 9-of-11 shooting, to go along with nine rebounds, three assists, and two blocked shots. Without that effort, it’s unlikely that Miami would have had the horses to get this win. Both James and Erik Spoelstra were well aware of this afterward, and had nothing but high praise for their team’s most quiet superstar.

“He’s such an impact to our team, so efficient,” James said. “He gets his points so quietly, makes jumpshots, gets to the free throw line, makes things happen for our team and we all feed off of that. And I tried to feed off of that as well.”

Spoelstra took it a step further, after noting it took him two and a half minutes into his postgame press conference before Bosh’s name even came up.

“He is our most important player, and he’s as steady and consistent as he always has been for the last two and a half years,” Spoelstra said. “He makes it look easy and he makes it look quiet, and yet he’s so impactful in the game. He was big under the rim and not just his scoring, but the big plays defensively at the end.”

Bosh said he did come in with more of a mindset to shoulder the offense with Wade out and with James being less than 100 percent.

“We can’t always expect LeBron to be LeBron all the time,” he said. “He’s not just going to be [perfect], whether it’s physically or whether it’s a bad game. It’s just not going to be A+ all the time.

“I just try to make shots, but I don’t do anything differently. The shots were open, my teammates found me, and I was just working out of the mid-range post a little bit, just trying to get some flow going to the game and it worked out.”

The Suns slowed Bosh a little in the second half from a scoring standpoint, but it didn’t change the impact he had on his team’s success. The attention Bosh required from the defense opened things up a little bit on the wings, and James and Mario Chalmers both took advantage of the increased opportunities.

The fact that Bosh plays at an All-Star level, but does so without the ego and the need for the spotlight makes him a perfect fit to play alongside Wade and James. It also makes it easy to see why Spoelstra and James speak so highly of him, and understand just how important he is to the team’s overall success.

“I let the game develop and I let it come to me,” Bosh said. “I don’t just go hunting for anything, if I have post-ups and I get doubled I move off the ball. I don’t like to force bad shots, I like to take high percentage shots. And that’s what makes us so dangerous. We move the ball so much and we play together to put pressure on the defense.”

  1. tigershark49 - Nov 18, 2012 at 3:20 PM

    Not too smart. Lebron James is their most important player.

  2. miamatt - Nov 18, 2012 at 4:25 PM

    Of course in the long term Miami needs LeBron and he is the most important player. But LeBron and Wade have a certain overlap between each other in terms of having games that attack the rim and set up open teammates.

    What Bosh does, in terms of pulling opposing bigs out of the paint, hitting jump shots, and taking his man off the dribble, is unique among the Miami Big 3. In that sense, he is what glues the whole system together. In the short term, Miami could survive Wade or James being out easier than they could Bosh. In the long term, of course it’s James who they really need. But this is Spoelstra’s way of making sure Bosh feels appreciated in the workplace. Anybody who watches a lot of Heat basketball knows Bosh is critical to this team’s success.

    • Foul Dwimmerlaik - Nov 18, 2012 at 5:50 PM

      Indeed. Well said.

      What I really appreciated is the absence of inflated ego on Bosh’s part.

      • moseskkim - Nov 18, 2012 at 7:59 PM

        Nah how can the best player on the planet by far not be the most important. In terms of championship, u take out bosh and u can put Anthony/haslem. It would be tougher to win but wade and Lebron would be tough to bet against. Take out Lebron and replace him with James jones? Miller? I know bosh is important but in an intangible sense, I could argue that battier is just as important. He spreads the floor, hits big shots. Defends 4’s but when u need him on a James harden, he’ll guard him too. So yeah James is most important no question. He’s a multiple league MVP and he’s not miamis most important/valuable? Nonsense.

      • Foul Dwimmerlaik - Nov 19, 2012 at 3:14 AM

        Moses: Easy there, fella. I’m with you too just like miamatt, that LBJ is numero uno for the Heat team. We were just appreciating Bosh as you would term it: the intangibles.

  3. 1972wasalongtimeago - Nov 18, 2012 at 5:01 PM

    1972wasalongtimeago – Nov 18, 2012 at 8:45 AM
    By the way, will there ever be any sort of acknowledgement of the consistently stellar play of Chris Bosh?


    Thank you

    • Foul Dwimmerlaik - Nov 18, 2012 at 5:52 PM

      *raises hand*

      As I said earlier, don’t also forget to include the absence of inflated ego on his part.

  4. drewdatwit84 - Nov 18, 2012 at 5:58 PM

    uh, tigershark49, you’re apparently not too smart.

    Bosh opens the floor up for the players in the side to take shots. when Bosh is making shots in the middle and the defense focuses on HIM, that means they have to leave LeBron and D-Wade open. if u watched HEAT games (or if u actually knew basketball), you’d be able to see that quite vividly. basketball is a team game, not a one-man show.

  5. isujames - Nov 18, 2012 at 7:22 PM

    Eric Spoelstra is silly.

  6. dko83 - Nov 18, 2012 at 8:23 PM

    Chris Bosh is the Miami Heat’s most important player. Excuse me..
    K I’m back. Stop trying to justify that he is, just stop it.

  7. scalfor3 - Nov 18, 2012 at 9:02 PM

    have sick midrange, like a bosh

  8. misterdreamer119 - Nov 18, 2012 at 11:55 PM

    Spoelstra just dropped to the bottom of the coaching rung with that stupid ass statement.

  9. money2long - Nov 19, 2012 at 12:24 AM

    i see it like this

    lebron is the nba’s mvp…

    take a watch for instance..lebron can be the shiny gold strap on it, the diamonds in the face, pretty much everything flashy.

    chris bosh however, can be the hour and minutes hand. and without those two things, you won’t know the time, and can you call it a watch anymore? even though bosh may not be the diamonds in the watch, the time indicators are a pretty important piece.

    i hope this made sense lol

  10. kingabdi23 - Nov 19, 2012 at 10:37 AM

    Heat fans were using Bosh as an excuse in the Pacers and Celtics series last year. Bosh is the most important player for sure.

  11. quancao - Nov 19, 2012 at 1:27 PM

    Nice article. The Big Three would not be the Big Three without one of them. In terms of flash and leadership, DWade stands out. In terms of creativity and hard work, there’s only one King James. When it comes to intelligence and reflectiveness, however, Chris Bosh is the man. Together they bring the passion and the focus to the game. We thought during the playoffs last year that the relationship would expand to the rest of the team. At times, we saw it with Battier, with Haslem, with Chalmers, even with Miller. This year, we thought Allen and Lewis would be instant. I guess things chemistry takes a little longer to develop each time. As of right now, it is nice to see Bosh step up, and it’s good Coach appreciates it.

  12. dacharger1 - Nov 20, 2012 at 4:56 PM

    Bottom line…Bosh is the 3rd of the big 3 and his game shows that when either Wade or James is out. Someone said earlier that he is the intangible piece to the HEAT.. Well said. His bhagame does his talking. He shouldered the team for the win which is all that matters. GO HEAT!!!

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