Final / OT
9:00 PM ET, January 9, 2011
Rose Garden, Portland, OR
James had a season-high 44 points, 13 rebounds and six assists, Wade added 34 points and eight rebounds, and the Miami Heat beat the Portland Trail Blazers 107-100 in overtime Sunday night for their 13th straight road victory.
"You look at games like this and moments like this and you really understand why we decided to team up and come together," Wade said. "I am a fan of his on the court and I am just glad I get to experience this in the same jersey he wears, instead of being on the other end."
James buried two deep 3-pointers and made two free throws in the extra period for the Heat (30-9), who have won 21 of their last 22 games after a slow start to the season. Chris Bosh added 18 points and eight rebounds. The Big Three combined for all but 11 of Miami's points.
Miami is three road wins away from tying the NBA record held by the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers. The Heat needed to scramble to keep the streak going after Wesley Matthews hit a 3-pointer to put the Blazers up 89-82 with 2:13 left.
James took the game over from the there, making a 3-pointer and two more free throws to tie it.
"I had to do whatever it took to win," James said. "Coach put me in that position and it created a mismatch for them and I was able to use my athleticism and quickness against whoever was on me."
Portland had the ball with 38 seconds left in overtime, trailing 104-100, but Aldridge traveled in the backcourt. James' second 3 in the extra period, from 26 feet out, put away the game.
"That's what big-time players do," Matthews said. "He was coming down, hitting big shots -- daggers -- and we couldn't do anything about it."
Portland's veteran players were well aware that James has a history of torching the Blazers in the Rose Garden -- he is averaging 33.5 points and 10.6 rebounds in his last seven games in Portland -- and there was some concern in the locker room that the intimidation factor would come into play if the game was close.
"I didn't want to jinx it pregame," Aldridge said, "but every time he's played here, he's shot the ball well. I didn't want to say that to my teammates, but he seems to save all his jump shots for us."
The Heat went into overtime for the second straight game after winning at Milwaukee on Friday. Portland led for most of the second half, but James tied it at 93 with two free throws with 24 seconds remaining. Andre Miller then missed two shots in the final seconds.
Wade made his first seven shots and had 15 of the Heat's first 19 points. Miami led 38-30 in the second after Wade, James and Bosh scored in succession. However, the Blazers went on a 7-0 run to cut the lead to one. The Heat led 46-44 at the break.
The third quarter belonged to Portland. Aldridge scored twice and Matthews finished a fast break with a layup to put Portland up 58-52. Rudy Fernandez made a 3-pointer to make it 65-60. Portland led 76-68 with 7:48 remaining in the game after Patrick Mills hit a 3.
"There wasn't any panic in the huddle," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "We just needed to clear up some of the things we were not doing to the best of our ability."
Portland had beaten the Heat in five of their last six meetings. Of course, that was without James and Bosh. ... The Blazers' home winning streak was their longest since they won 12 in a row from Jan. 24 to March 9, 2009. They have a chance to start a new home winning streak, with eight of their next 10 at home. ... The Heat shot 56 percent from the field to Portland's 41 percent.
Team Stat Comparison
|FGM-FGA||45-79 (.570)||38-91 (.418)|
|3PM-3PA||5-15 (.333)||5-24 (.208)|
|FTM-FTA||12-16 (.750)||19-22 (.864)|
|Fast Break Points||23||12|
|Fouls (Tech/Flagrant)||22 (2/0)||15 (0/0)|
Next 5 Games
It appears that LeBron is starting to hit on all cylinders. After averaging just 23.7 PPG and shooting less than 44 percent from the field in October and November, LeBron is getting better month by month. In both December and January, LeBron is shooting better than 50 percent and his scoring average has increased. Not surprisingly, the Heat have "heated" up as well. The Heat were just 10-8 in October/November, but were 15-1 in December and are 5-0 in January.[+]
LeBRON JAMES - MONTH-BY-MONTH THIS SEASON
From Elias: NEXT LEVEL: When the Big 3 are on the court together, the Heat have a plus/minus of +14.4 per 48 minutes. With James off the floor, that number drops slightly to just +12.1. When LeBron James and Chris Bosh play together with Wade on the bench, the Heat are just +1.5 per 48 minutes. Does Chris Bosh hold the key to it all? When the two superstar wing men play together without Bosh, the Heat are -15.1.[+]
Plus/Minus Per 48 Minutes - Combination of Big 3 This Season
When the Big 3 joined forces in Miami, many thought they could challenge the record 72 wins put up by the 1995-96 Bulls. While a 9-8 start put that to rest, Miami has since gone 21-1 with 12 of those wins coming on the road. Their point differential over those games is +12.2 per game. The Bulls best stretch with one loss? 31-1 including 15 road wins.[+]
Feeling Bullish In South Beach - Comparing Best Spans With 1 Loss
From Elias: LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh were responsible for 89.7 percent of their team's points Sunday, combining for 96 of Miami's 107 points. It's the 5th highest percentage of a team's total points by 3 teammates in the last 20 seasons. Ironically, LeBron James was also part of a similar game with the Cavs, combining with Drew Gooden and current Heat center Zydrunas Ilgauskas for 91.8 pct of Cleveland's point in a game in which LeBron scored a career-high 56 points.[+]
Highest Pct of Team Points - By 3 Players, Last 20 Seasons
From Elias: The Big Three of Lebron James (44 pts), Dwyane Wade (34 pts), and Chris Bosh (18 pts) combined for 96 of the Heat's 107 points against the Trail Blazers. That was 89.7 percent of the teams total points tonight, the highest percent they have combined for this season.[+]
Big Three Highest Pct of Heat Pts
ESPN Stats & Information