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Heat notch ninth straight victory with easy beating of the Bulls

Feb 21, 2013, 11:23 PM EST

Miami Heat's James goes to the basket against Chicago Bulls' Teague during the first half of their NBA basketball game in Chicago, Illinois

The Heat win plenty of games with flash and brilliance, and often times play an entertaining style of basketball that’s thrilling to watch even as they’re putting a beatdown on their opponent, perhaps even as expected.

Miami’s 86-67 win over Chicago on Thursday was not one of those performances.

The Heat surgically struck the Bulls, and destroyed them defensively with very few signature highlights or vulgar displays of power.

Instead, Miami used its defensive pressure to force countless turnovers that seemed to come primarily on Chicago’s poor choice of passes. And even with a below-average scoring output, that was enough to keep the Bulls from scoring much at all in a very low-possession game.

LeBron James, who finished with 26 points, 12 rebounds, and seven assists (while making 11 of his 14 attempts from the field) seemed as bored by his team’s win as the rest of us were watching it.

“It’s just another win in a long NBA season,” James told Craig Sager on the TNT telecast afterward.

This was the Heat’s ninth straight victory, and their first on the road against a quality team in the Eastern Conference this season. Chicago had beaten the Heat in Miami back in early January, which may have been the reason for the Heat’s increased focus in this one.

Or, it might just have been that after a championship hangover to start the first half of the season, the Heat are finally starting to hit their stride. The defensive intensity that was nonexistent in the first part of the season is now being brought by the team on a nightly basis. Against Chicago, the Heat forced a Bulls team averaging just over 14 turnovers per game into 27 of them on the team’s home floor.

Miami also managed to hold Chicago to just 37.3 percent shooting, while the Heat shot better than 50 percent.

Even when James and Dwyane Wade don’t get out in transition for high-flying slams, or slash through the defense to get to the rim at will as they’re both seemingly capable of whenever they feel the time is right, the Heat can simply clamp down defensively and win a low-scoring battle against one of the league’s better defensive teams, and do so in business-like fashion.

Seeing Miami win like this should put a legitimate scare into the rest of the teams who consider themselves challengers to the Heat’s championship crown. Thursday’s victory was downright Spurs-like in its joyless efficiency, and if the Heat realized the ability that they uncovered along the way, we could be in for an equally boring postseason.

  1. asublimeday - Feb 21, 2013 at 11:30 PM

    There was no Rose. But after seeing this, he should be back soon. We may be thanking Wade and his boyfriends come finals time.

    • eventhorizon04 - Feb 22, 2013 at 12:01 AM

      …….Huh?

      • eventhorizon04 - Feb 22, 2013 at 12:04 AM

        Not really sure how this game will help speed up Rose’s recovery.

        Rose also made it clear about a week ago that he’s coming back on his own timetable (when he’s “110%”), so I don’t think 1 regular season win or loss is going to affect that timetable.

    • pantsfreezone - Feb 22, 2013 at 1:49 AM

      I have read some monstrously retarded comments on this site but yours wins the Academy Award. The Bulls will be lucky to get out of the first round at this rate.

  2. funktron2x - Feb 22, 2013 at 12:29 AM

    Rose or not, ya ain’t beating the Heat in 7.

  3. 1972wasalongtimeago - Feb 22, 2013 at 12:30 AM

    Seemed like Chicago was really making us (yes,us)uncomfortable. We(yes,we) never really got in a rhythm but Lebron is so good that even when he’s clearly bothered and banged around, he’s still shooting 80% and sticking dagger jumpers when the Bulls were able to stop our ball movement. He’s just incredible.

    Can you believe Carlos Boozer makes more $ than Lebron? Boozer is total dog crap. No offense to Carlos.. Im sure he’s a good guy. But he stinks.

    • savvybynature - Feb 22, 2013 at 1:52 AM

      Lebron has never shot close to 80% in a season nor will he ever approach that mark.

      Definitely a great player that carries his team from night to night though, no mistake about it.

      • 1972wasalongtimeago - Feb 22, 2013 at 6:10 AM

        LeBron was 11/14. Isn’t that just about 80%? 78%? What am I missing?

      • savvybynature - Feb 22, 2013 at 12:21 PM

        My bad. The way you phrased it “he’s still shooting 80%” made it sound like you were referring to a season stat. Had you said “he still shot 80%” I would have realized you meant on this particular night.

  4. asublimeday - Feb 22, 2013 at 2:11 AM

    I have read some monstrously retarded comments on this site but yours wins the Academy Award. The Bulls will be lucky to get out of the first round at this rate.
    —–
    A) I don’t think they give out academy awards for anything related to “monster retard comments”

    B) Kill yourself.

    • southbeachtalent - Feb 22, 2013 at 9:02 AM

      I have read some monstrously retarded comments on this site but yours wins the Academy Award. The Bulls will be lucky to get out of the first round at this rate.
      —–
      A) I don’t think they give out academy awards for anything related to “monster retard comments”

      B) Kill yourself.

      _______

      A.) If they did you would be a shoe-in.

      B.) Seek help..

  5. supremekingz - Feb 22, 2013 at 6:45 AM

    Honestly, it was just a perfect storm. Miami can play the best defensively and the Bulls have struggled offensively. Throw in the game now being in the 2nd half of the season, no Rose and BAM! Slaughter

  6. supremekingz - Feb 22, 2013 at 6:48 AM

    Oh yeah, as a fellow Bulls fan I agree. Boozer has absolutely NO hops, and plays almost exclusively under the rim. He doesn’t dominate and I really like Taj more than Boozer at this point. He has to be amnestied next year

  7. rodge1 - Feb 22, 2013 at 8:20 AM

    @asublimeday

    Wade & his boyfriends are the best team in the NBA.

    • thenmoveback - Feb 22, 2013 at 8:56 AM

      His comments are what you expect from a chi fan, who else heard the fans cheering when Lebron got hurt? I dont care if you dont like a player or he is just the best player on another team, I find it absolutely pathetic when fans cheer for a hurt player.

      • pantsfreezone - Feb 22, 2013 at 2:32 PM

        You are talking about a fan base that chanted and carried signs that said “Let’s finish what Katrina started.” when the Bears played the Saints. I live in Chicago and I can tell you the fans here are some the worst in the country. Nicest people in the world, worst fanatics.

  8. thaoption1 - Feb 22, 2013 at 9:53 AM

    @ asublimeday: what the hell does this one game have to do with DRose coming back. Do your research lmao DUMB comment

  9. asublimeday - Feb 22, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    I have read some monstrously retarded comments on this site but yours wins the Academy Award. The Bulls will be lucky to get out of the first round at this rate.
    —–
    A) I don’t think they give out academy awards for anything related to “monster retard comments”

    B) Kill yourself.

    _______

    A.) If they did you would be a shoe-in.

    B.) Seek help..
    ———

    Ahhhhaha “shoe-in”, eh?

    I think we can see who’s winning the imaginary lack of intelligence awards around here.

  10. asublimeday - Feb 22, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    @ asublimeday: what the hell does this one game have to do with DRose coming back. Do your research lmao DUMB comment
    ———

    D Rose is on his own time table. Seeing he’s needed badly could bump his time table up. It’s a theory.

    Sorry, ill speak in ways you can understand:

    OMG D ROSE WE NEEEEEDDDD YOU YOU NEED TO COME BACK DAWG C U SOON I HOPE

    • southbeachtalent - Feb 22, 2013 at 11:28 AM

      he’s not coming back until he’s a 110%…..

      Regardless the Heat have defeated the Bulls in the playoffs with D. Rose. Convincingly I would add…

      BTW, nice show of class last night. The United Center has become a pathetic joke.

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