The OKC Thunder leads the NBA Finals 1-0 over the Miami Heat, after a 11 point victory on Tuesday night. One major adjustment made by the Miami Heat was the placement of Chris Bosh into the starting lineup. From the outset it doesn’t appear strategically the Thunder has made any changes to their philosophy.
1st Quarter: Miami comes out strong with a sense of urgency jumping out to at one time an 17 point lead. OKC once again struggled from the field in the 1st quarter missing 11 of its first 12 before the sixth man of the year winner James Harden entered and scored a quick 10 points. Dwayne Wade has been aggressive in the quarter to counter act and assist LeBron James and appears to be determined to attack the paint defense of the Thunder. Serge Ibaka has 2 first quarter block with both coming on LeBron James and DWayne Wade. The duo of Durant Westbrook struggled in the 1st quarter with both picking up 2 early fouls and combining for just 2 of 10 on field goal attempts.
Miami lead 27-15
2nd Quarter: James Harden continued his scoring in the quarter allowing the Thunder to briefly cut the deficit to single digits. As the Thunder appeared to be settling into the game Miami began a 7-0 run to then equal the largest lead of the game of 17 points. Shane Battier is again showing his 3 point ability as he continues to score in transition. Currently James Harden is the only offensive threat for OKC leading all scorers with 17 points. The Thunder throughout these playoffs has fallen behind in games as they did in Game 1, it will remain to be seen if the Thunder will be able to come back and win the game. The assertion of Chris Bosh in the starting lineup has paid dividends for the Heat as Bosh has recorded a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant must begin to assert themselves for the Thunder to be competitive for the remainder of the game.
Miami leads 55-43
3rd Quarter: Miami kept the separation between themselves and the Thunder during the quarter. Each time it seemed the Thunder were poised to make a run the Heat would respond to keep their distance. Kevin Durant picked up his 4th foul in the quarter which may effect his aggression for the remainder of this game. Miami leads 78-67.
4th Quarter: Miami has maintained the lead throughout the game and must fight off a OKC run to be able go back to Miami victorious. Midway through the quarter Kevin Durant is perfect from field for the 2nd half and has the Thunder in position to make this game close. Offensively Miami has become stagnate using a lot of clock before setting into position for their shot which leaves a slim margin to create opportunities if a good look isn’t available. OKC made a furious rally in the closing seconds of the game getting as close to 2 points with 12 seconds remaining in the game. Coach Scott Brooks decided to go for a fast basket versus use more clock for the shot
or ultimately take a 3 to win the game. As they did in Game 1 Westbrook and Durant dominated the 2nd half however it wouldn’t be enough to overcome the sluggish start that lead to large deficit.
Miami wins 100-96