LeBron, Wade, Bosh lead Heat over Spurs to even series at 2
BY JOE COWLEY firstname.lastname@example.org June 13, 2013 10:48PM
SAN ANTONIO, TX - JUNE 13: LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat hugs Dwyane Wade #3 of the Miami Heat after the Heat defeat the San Antonio Spurs 109-93 during Game Four of the 2013 NBA Finals at the AT&T Center on June 13, 2013 in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Updated: June 14, 2013 12:50AM
SAN ANTONIO — Welcome to the NBA Finals, Dwyane Wade.
It took until Game 4, and there was some unnecessary drama about a right knee that appears to be injured only after poor results, but you showed up.
And nice of you to bring along Chris Bosh.
Now that the Miami Heat’s “Big Three’’ is all together again, we once again have a series.
Behind 32 points from Wade, 20 points from Bosh and, of course, LeBron James’ all-world effort, the Heat avoided a 3-1 hole, pulling away late in a 109-93 victory Thursday night at the AT&T Center.
San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich will have to devise a new scheme to stop James.
The old one — throwing every body possible at him and putting the onus on the rest of his teammates — didn’t hold up in Game 4.
James made sure of that.
After failing to score 20 points in the three previous games, James made good on his promise to be better.
The four-time MVP set the tone in the first quarter, shooting 5-for-6 from the field for a team-high 11 points.
He scored from inside the paint as well as with an outside jumper that had betrayed him throughout the series.
And just to prove that his jumper was back, James lit the Spurs up from outside in the fourth quarter.
James finished with a game-high 33 points on 15-for-25 shooting and grabbed 11 rebounds, a far cry from the 7-for-21, 15-point effort on Tuesday.
“I just came in real confident,’’ James said. “Before I even made a shot, I knew where my confidence was going to be. That last game was history. I’m blessed to have a next day. I just know there’s a tomorrow. As bad as I played in Game 3, I can put the pressure on myself.
“I watched the film, didn’t like the way I was playing and made some changes.’’
James was the catalyst, but give Heat coach Erik Spoelstra the assist.
Spoelstra shook up the lineup by starting Mike Miller over Udonis Haslem. Popovich refused to go small and had center Tiago Splitter on Wade.
That lasted about a minute because Spoelstra’s adjustment changed the tempo and neutralized a Spurs team that had been killing the Heat on the boards.
Wade being aggressive on both ends, as evidenced by his six steals, was something the Spurs didn’t seem prepared for.
“That’s what great players do,’’ Spurs point guard Tony Parker said of Wade. “They show up in big games.’’
Wade’s awakening regained the home-court advantage for the Heat.
Game 5 is Sunday before the series heads back to Miami.
“I needed a game like this, but my teammates needed a game like this from me,’’ Wade said.