The Heat started as slowly as you could imagine, down 11-0 inside the opening moments, but staged a furious comeback on the back of stellar play from LeBron James and Chris Bosh to record their third consecutive victory to open the season.
The young but confident Bobcats got out to a hot start and led throughout the game until the fourth quarter on the back of a breakout game from rookie sensation Kemba Walker and solid contributions from veterans Boris Diaw, DJ Augustine and DJ White.
Miami emerged after the half Dwyane Wade-less, who had struggled throughout the game and finished with only 10 points. Wade suffered a foot injury and his return was delayed, but certainly timely as he hit the game winning lay up with 2.9 seconds to go to help Miami close out Charlotte.
Chris Bosh had the best game I have seen him play since game 4 of the Chicago playoff series and one of his best games since his move to Miami. Bosh finished with 25 points, including some big plays down the stretch, and 6 rebounds, but the most impressive and positive aspect of his game was his aggression. Bosh has been heavily criticised (certainly by me) for shrinking when he was needed and being much too passive and conservative. Tonight he showed what he can do when he commits himself and that is what the Heat will expect from him every night.
With Wade’s absence, James stepped up big, helping pull Miami back into the game with his 35 points, 7 assists and 6 rebounds. He was just as productive on the defensive end, altering shots and earning 3 steals and 2 blocks. His post game was at times orgasmic and it is beginning to look like LeBron is enjoying himself down low. He is finally starting to realise and appreciate what we have all known for so long, that if he develops a post game he will be all but unstoppable. He truly does look like a different player to the LeBron James we saw last season, but nothing he achieves during the regular season will matter until we see him do it in the playoffs and Finals, but until that opportunity comes, we can marvel at the growing power that is LeBron James.
Charlotte certainly deserved more than a loss, but seemed to have run out of steam at the end of the game as Miami continued to run on offense and defense. In the end star power came out on top, but the youthful Bobcats certainly have a bright future ahead of them.
Chalmers bounced back from a rough night against Boston and seemed to have taken some of Norris Cole’s initiative, getting out and running off a defensive stop and getting to the cup whenever he had an opening.
For Charlotte Kemba Walker was predictably exciting and I think he has a huge future ahead of him. I am not one to listen to the rubbish scouts regurgitate, saying he was too small to be effective, I predict he will be an All Star before his career is over. Bismack Biyombo is a hugely promising talent and his physical tools are incredible. I can certainly see a DPOY award in his future.
Cam Newton was in attendance for the second consecutive game, and was interacting with both Dwyane Wade and LeBron James throughout. Following Wade’s game winner he looked at Cam Newton and gave the Superman signal, ripping his shirt to reveal the S.
Tags: Basketball Bismack Biyombo Boris Diaw Cam Newton Carolina Panthers Charlotte Bobcats Chris Bosh DJ Augustine DJ White Dwyane Wade Kemba Walker Lebron James Mario Chalmers Miami Heat NBA Norris Cole