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Chris Bosh comes out of hiding with monster Game 4

Jun 14, 2013, 2:04 AM EDT

Heat's James watches center Bosh dunk against the Spurs as Diaw (33) and  Duncan (21) look on during Game 4 of their NBA Finals basketball series in San Antonio

Just five active players have more than two seasons averaging 22 points and eight rebounds per game. Of those five, four have received at least one MVP vote in the last three years, and the one who hasn’t is the youngest.

Dirk Nowitzki, Kevin Garnett, Tim Duncan and Amar’e Stoudemire have been recognized among the game’s top players, but Chris Bosh, still vibrant enough to remain a difference maker, has faded from the spotlight.

Playing third fiddle to LeBron James and Dwyane Wade has masked Bosh’s true ability. Even as Erik Spoelstra frequently calls him the Heat’s most-important player, it comes across as a way to placate a star who needs reassurance in the face of a lesser role.

Much more than LeBron and Wade, Bosh has subdued his game to server a great team good. His perimeter shooting greatly aids Miami’s floor-spacing, and he does many of the little things expected of a big man who plays with two ball-dominating superstar bigs.

But Bosh is rarely seen as a star anymore.

That will change after his 20-point and 13-rebound performance in Game 4 of the NBA Finals helped the Heat beat the Spurs, 109-93.

It’s Bosh’s first 20-point game in more than a month and his first game with as many rebounds in just as long. Also consider his two steals and two blocks, and these are numbers he’d posted just five times in career, only once with Miami and never before in the playoffs.

Bosh’s stat line should draw attention to him, which in turn, should draw attention his defense, which was very good tonight. With Mike Miller starting for Udonis Haslem, the Heat absolutely needed it.

Entering the game,Tim Duncan shot 6-for-23 (26.1 percent) with Haslem on the court and 10-for-20 (50 percent) with Haslem on the bench. Unsurprisingly, the Spurs’ offensive rating while Duncan plays changed similarly, dropping from 117.8 with Haslem on the bench to 102.3 with Haslem on the court.

In other words, reducing Haslem’s role and tasking Bosh with guarding Duncan more was a big risk. Bosh held his own. Duncan scored a quiet 20 points, but he had just five rebounds and also turned the ball over three times.

It’s the type of two-way performance Bosh hasn’t had in quite some time, and it should serve as a reminder to those who’d forgotten: Chris Bosh is still very good.

  1. sffan75 - Jun 14, 2013 at 2:12 AM

    I think tonight proves why it was so important San Antonio won game one. You can’t beat the Heat twice in a row, so they needed to win game one to have a shot to win the series. The Heat proved that against the Pacers. The Pacers could take games from them, but they couldn’t win the series without being able to take two in a row.

  2. badintent - Jun 14, 2013 at 2:36 AM

    Just a guess, but at half time, LBJ wrapped his hands around Posh Bosh’s neck in the shower room and told him to play like a man or get f#cked like a dog.

    • truthbetoldforsure - Jun 14, 2013 at 4:47 PM

      I thought Duncan did that to Ginobilli and yet he still underperformed.

      • truthbetoldforsure - Jun 14, 2013 at 4:47 PM

        must be a hell of a night for Ginobilli lol

      • badintent - Jun 15, 2013 at 1:30 AM

        Duncan grabbed Manu ‘s little head , not his big head

  3. rickyspanish - Jun 14, 2013 at 2:40 AM

    Writing Bosh off was ridiculous, I know everybody likes to take jabs at the guy, but he is a great player. He could easily be a 20-10 machine as the main option but he went to Miami because winning is more important to him than numbers. I know he broke down and cried after the loss to Dallas, but so did Durant after he lost to Miami last year and I don’t hear people referencing that all the time.

    • fanofevilempire - Jun 14, 2013 at 7:27 AM

      CB getting ten rebounds, he would have to jump to do that.
      CB is a softy on the inside, he does not like to bang.
      CB has to at least hit his jumper.
      CB has to show up for his team to win.

      • nard100 - Jun 14, 2013 at 9:08 AM

        Looks like he made most of these measurements yesterday and he definitely did NOT look soft inside the paint.

    • gmsingh123 - Jun 14, 2013 at 8:10 AM

      rickyspanish, you are completely wrong. What Bosh does on the court is what determines if he’s “great”. If he plays like a loser 90% of the time and looks like a champion the other 10% he’s lazy, unfocused, or whatever. Great players are great for years: MJ, Kobe, Larry Legend, Magic, Kareem, Bill Russell, Dr. J, and at least two dozen others. Bosh will NEVER be on that list. Never as in not ever. In a way I feel sorry for Bosh, because he doesn’t use “an injury” as a perpetual excuse like Wade. At this point Wade’s leg should fall off below the knee so we can believe he’s really hurt.

      • rickyspanish - Jun 14, 2013 at 3:12 PM

        I said he is a great player not legendary. The people you mention are elite, I’m not comparing him to the likes of Bird, Magic or Jordan, you brought that up, not me.

    • fredagsedb - Jun 14, 2013 at 9:06 AM

      Yes. It is stupid to think that he couldn’t play well. No reason to think he couldn’t. He’s still young an talented. But the criticism of him has mainly centered around him only operating as a shooter on offense, and rebounding like a mediocre guard. He probably could still be a 20+ and 10 (8) franchise player on a team where he was the best player. But he knew that was not going to be the case when he signed with Miami. So if he wants to be seen as a great player still, he has to be locked in and aggressive even as the 3rd or 2nd option. There is NO good reason he shouldn’t get 10 rebounds a game regardless of how they choose to involve him offensively. There is NO good reason why he should play hard D and run the floor. If he wants to be seen and remembered as an integral piece to a championship team, and a HOF’er (like he already thinks he is) he has to do that. This is the only game this playoffs where he’s shown his aggressive self. So the criticism was justified. He played well. But just like one bad game doesn’t all of the sudden make you a bad player, one good game doesn’t mean that he all of the sudden is playing well these playoffs.

      But credit to him for game 4. He played well!

      • borderline1988 - Jun 14, 2013 at 10:07 AM


        Nobody is saying he doesn’t have the ability, talent, or athletiscm to be a legit big man in the NBA.
        But there’s no question he was playing soft so far in the playoffs.The critiscm is completely justified. He finally woke up and decided to put in some real effort…and look at the results. He dominated a game, against perhaps the greatest power forward of all time and an excellent defensive centre (in Splitter).

        The guy gets paid almost $20 million to play a game…he should be putting in this effort every single game! If he had the motor of a Chris Andersen and the toughness of Haslem, he’d could be an MVP candidate every year.

      • miamatt - Jun 14, 2013 at 7:00 PM

        I agree with many of your points, but he did have a 20-19 game against Chicago. And this was his 3rd consecutive double-double. But I agree I’d like to see him do more on the glass and with regards to contesting shots hard at times.

  4. hehateme2 - Jun 14, 2013 at 8:16 AM

    @ to go Heat! Let’s get ready to party.

  5. leahcima1 - Jun 14, 2013 at 9:37 AM

    Some villages must have gotten their idiots back. I don’t see cantonjerk13 around?

  6. reesesteel23 - Jun 14, 2013 at 9:38 AM

    A rare occurrence for a species believed to be extinct.

  7. 00maltliquor - Jun 14, 2013 at 10:30 AM

    Finally! About time the Boshtrich pulled his freakin’ head out the sand and showed up to work!

  8. cjispro - Jun 14, 2013 at 8:01 PM

    Chris Bosh comes out. The end.

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