The Magic came out scolding hot as Miami struggled to find any offensive consistency throughout, as the northern Floridians took the bragging rights in their first meeting of the season.
Miami were held to their lowest first quarter total all season, 18 points, tonight in Orlando and really fought themselves all night as they shot well under 50%, not a statistic the Heat have been familiar with so far this season.
Dwyane Wade was the only shining light for Miami, scoring a typically brilliant 33 points on 15/24 shooting. LeBron James had perhaps his worst shooting performance of his hugely efficient season, shooting a miserable 5/15, but as only he can do, still managed to contribute with 10 assists, 6 rebounds and 3 steals.
Chris Bosh continued his poor run of form, again failing to score 20 points, finishing with just 12. Do not hold me to this, but I do not believe Bosh has scored over 20 since Dwyane Wade returned from his foot injury. He may have once, but certainly no more than that.
The Magic deserve all the credit. They superbly locked down LeBron James, something no other team has been able to do thus far this season. They hit 40% of their 42 three point attempts and their departing leader Dwight Howard notched up an impressive 25 points and 24 rebounds. Miami had no answer for Howard, and it again shows their inability to guard the center position. Luckily for the Heat, the quality of centre’s in the league right now is perhaps at its lowest ever point, should Howard stunningly remain in north Florida, the Magic simply aren’t good enough to beat Miami in a best of 7 series. I don’t believe anyone is.
Nonetheless Miami lost ground in their bid to catch Chicago, still with 2 games in hand, but still an opportunity lost on the first of their six consecutive road games.