LeBron’s two most scrutinised areas of his game, his free throws and ability to perform in late game situations, were the keys to Miami’s win in Detroit last night as the Heat jumped to a record of 13-5.
James has been labelled as a choker, constantly shrinking and disappearing from the big moments. Regardless of the falseness of this, he made a statement last night, hitting 6/6 from the free throw line within the last 90 seconds of the game to ensure the young Pistons went home disappointed.
James put his entire repertoire on show, making plays for himself, for his teammates and getting stops on the defensive end. Austin Daye, the 6’11 small forward for Detroit, had a career night finishing with 28 points, but was unable to score down the stretch as LeBron tightened up on him, forcing others to make plays.
Chris Bosh continued his purple patch of form, contributing throughout the game and critically in the final 5 minutes, finishing with 27 points.
Miami didn’t get the bench productivity they would have liked, their rebounding was horrible and were destroyed in that category, and their expert three point shooters (Battier, Jones and Miller) each finished without a triple.
Detroit meanwhile had breakout games from Daye, upcoming star Greg Monroe and rookie sensation Brandon Knight, and they thought they made have pulled off the season’s biggest upset thus far when the Jonas Brother hit a three with around 1:30 remaining. Unfortunately they were unable to keep LeBron out of the paint, who finished them off from the stripe and condemned the young Pistons to a league worst 4-15 record, with a frightening week of 5 games, 4 of which on the road, beginning on Saturday.
Miami host the struggling mess that is the New York Knicks (coming off a loss to the Cavaliers…yes the Cavaliers) tomorrow, then they have a days rest before Derrick Rose brings his Bulls to South Beach. Important few days for Miami to assess where they are at this point. Dwyane Wade is expected to return for the Bulls game, but is questionable for the Knicks visit.
Tags: Austin Daye Basketball Brandon Knight Chicago Bulls Chris Bosh Cleveland Cavaliers Derrick Rose Detroit Pistons Dwyane Wade Greg Monroe James Jones Jonas Jerebko Lebron James Miami Heat Mike Miller NBA New York Knicks Shane Battier