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Bulls 96 - HEAT 89 Game Recap and Infographic

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(Photo Credit: Mike Ehrmann)

The Miami HEAT lost to the Chicago Bulls Friday night at AmericanAirlines Arena. The Bulls took the lead for good at the half and the HEAT were never able to come all the way back. The HEAT return to action Sunday against the Washington Wizards.

Impact Performance of the Night: LeBron James and Dwyane Wade both played extremely well, but Carlos Boozer was the impact performer of the night. He scored 27 points and grabbed 12 rebounds, six on the offensive end. Boozer was the Bulls offense for much of the night, and he did a great job carrying the load.

The Deciding Run: The HEAT trailed all game. They cut the deficit to three points with about 9:30 left on a LeBron James jumper. The Bulls then went on a quick 8-1 run to open up a 10-point lead. The HEAT were able to get it down to five points at one point, but they never truly threatened.

Play of the Game: The highlight of the night was Dwyane Wade’s lob to LeBron James. James was able to climb the ladder, high above the rim and finish the alley-oop. It was gravity defying.

Efficiency Rating: Offensive Efficiency: 102.7; Defensive Efficiency: 110.9

Trend to Watch: The HEAT got beat up on the glass, and the Bulls were able to score 20 second chance points. The HEAT have done a solid job on defensive rebounding most of the season with the exception of a few games. Tonight, Taj Gibson, Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer combined for 17 offensive rebounds. Going forward, the HEAT will try to find ways to keep bigger opponents off the glass. They’ve done it before, and there’s no reason to believe they won’t do it again.

The Takeaway: That game looked a lot like the HEAT-Bulls matchups of the past few seasons. The game was physical, hard-fought and tight in the fourth quarter. Come April and May, this game won’t mean much. But in the short-term it gives the HEAT a lot of little things to focus on. While the loss hurts in the standings, it may be beneficial in the long run.

Notes: LeBron James scored 30 points and grabbed six rebounds. Dwyane Wade finished with 22 points, four assists and three rebounds. Chris Bosh scored 14 points. Terrel Harris and Dexter Pittman were inactive.



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this is one of the few match ups that Pittman would do well in. He had a solid outing his last time against them, he wouldn't get pushed around like everyone else did tonight

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Noah really insulted the heat even though it was true. Miami should take his statement personal and hopefully start to do a better job on the boards.

Noah said, "I don't think that small ball is going to work against us. We're going to enjoy this.

For him to even say him and his team is going to have a ball as they did tonight is an insult and hope this statement wake up Miami especially Spo to make adjustment b/c small ball isn't going to work vs everybody.,0,7777026.story

Bulls bullish on boards, as Heat fall 96-89

By Ira Winderman

During the third quarter of Friday night's 96-89 loss to the Chicago Bulls at AmericanAirlines Arena, the Miami Heat presented a video commemoration of Rony Seikaly's franchise-record 34 rebounds on March 3, 1993 against Washington.


Especially on a night the Heat couldn't reach that total as a team.

"There's not a whole lot to say," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "Everybody in both locker rooms understand what the overwhelming key to the game was."

Blitzed 48-28 on the boards, a recurring theme of late, the Heat found themselves unable to recover despite 30 points from LeBron James and 22 from Dwyane Wade.

Not when Carlos Boozer and Joakim Noah both were going for double-doubles for the Bulls, Boozer closing with 27 points and 12 rebounds, Noah with 13 and 12.

"They were just throwing it up there and playing volleyball against us," Spoelstra said. "It's just something we've got to get better at."

The postgame mood in the locker room was somber.

"It's killing us. It's killing us, plain and simple," center Chris Bosh said of such rebounding deficits. "Everybody knows that.

"We better figure it out."

Chicago entered having been outrebounded in its previous five and eight of its previous 10 games.

This time, though, even in the continuing absence of sidelined guard Derrick Rose, the Bulls stood tallest.

"We knew they were going to be aggressive," Bosh said. "They really got it going."

The Bulls closed with a 20-7 edge on second-chance points and 46-34 scoring advantage in the paint. Chicago closed with 19 offensive rebounds, the Heat with four.

"They had us on our heels the entire night on the backboard," Spoelstra said. "They pounded us."

Unlike recent victories when the Heat overcame such rebounding deficits against the Minnesota Timberwolves and Orlando Magic, the Bulls simply play at too high a level for it to be overcome. The Heat entered 4-0 this season when outrebounded by 15 or more.

"We've got to find a way to fix it," Wade said. "Go get the ball, that's all we can do. Obviously we don't have the answer as a team.

"You've got to do better, as simple as that."

At one stage in the fourth quarter, in fact, 6-foot-2 Norris Cole actually led the Heat in rebounds, with four.

James led the Heat with six rebounds, with the Heat getting only five from Bosh and three from starting power forward Udonis Haslem.

"We didn't do a very good job," forward Shane Battier said. "Our effort wasn't good enough tonight.

"It didn't seem like we made the adjustment."

Or, as Noah said, "I don't think that small ball is going to work against us. We're going to enjoy this."

Not the Heat.

"It's a recurrence," James said of the rebounding deficit. "We got smashed on the glass. Especially against a team like this, you play good defense, the number shows you give a team like this extra possessions and they’re going to capitalize on it."

It got a little testy with 10:22 to play in the fourth quarter, when Noah was called for a flagrant foul, for taking James down by the neck.

The Heat trailed 75-66 at the time. James made both free throws, with the Heat retaining possession.

The two free throws put James over the 20-point mark for the 31st time in as many games this season.

The Heat retained possession, with James fouled by Bulls forward Luol Deng, with James again making both foul shots on the four-point possession that drew the Heat within 75-70. A Bulls turnover ensued, as did a James dunk that drew the Heat within 75-72.

Chicago, though, then pushed back to an 83-73 lead with 6:34 to play, on a run capped by a 3-pointer from guard Nate Robinson.

The Heat later closed within 87-81, only to see Wade blow a layup after a Bulls turnover on one possession and Wade called for a charge on the Heat's next possession.

A Ray Allen 3-pointer later drew the Heat within 91-85, with James fouled then fouled after a steal, on what was ruled a clear-path foul on Chicago's Kirk Hinrich with 90 seconds to play.

That sent James to the line, with the Heat also retaining possession.

At 12 of 14 from the line to that point, James made only the first of the two foul shots, to draw the Heat within 91-86. A turnover then gave the ball back to the Bulls.

And that essentially was it, the Heat now having fallen at home to prime Eastern Conference rivals Chicago and New York.

James remained in the lineup after sitting out Thursday's practice with knee pain.

Even with James in the lineup, Spoelstra said he appreciated he had to be cautious.

"He is not super-human," Spoelstra said, "so he does have some knick-knack injuries.

"He's the ultimate competitor. Once he gets warmed up, then he wants to stay out there."

James, who played 41 minutes, entered the night second in career points against the Bulls, with 970, behind only the 1,031 of Boston's Paul Pierce.

"Once I was out there, it felt pretty good," James said. "A couple of times during the game I felt it. But I started moving a little bit more. I started to warm up. But it will probably hurt tomorrow. A little sore right now. It's like a day-to-day thing right now."

For their part, the Bulls had Noah back in the lineup after he missed Wednesday's victory over the Orlando Magic due to flu symptoms.

The Bulls remain without Rose, who is rehabbing from last season's gruesome knee injury. Rose is traveling with the Bulls to acclimate himself to the NBA schedule, but is not expected to return until after the All-Star break.

The game was the first of four between the teams.

The game was the second on a three-game homestand for the Heat that concludes Sunday against the Washington Wizards before a two-week, six-game trip opens Tuesday against the Indiana Pacers.

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They also should box out and when you see that a player is on fire, take the challenge to stop him, I didn't see any effort on rebounding by my HEAT. Sad loss, still, LETS GO HEAT! <3

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Is Bosh serious? He's part of the problem. Dude avg 7 rebounds. He's the 3rd option and should an is capable of avging 10 boards every night. He needs to stop being so soft

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Seriously. this is an issue the Heat need to focus on. Forget having practice concerning defensive schemes and anything else. They need to have a week's worth of practice to remind some of these people how to box out, to be more aggressive, more assertive crashing the boards, and to put out a better effort on the rebounding.

It's not a fluke. The way to beat Miami is by beating them on the boards.

I hope our coaching staff took this loss and said a major change was needed.

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Seriously. this is an issue the Heat need to focus on. Forget having practice concerning defensive schemes and anything else. They need to have a week's worth of practice to remind some of these people how to box out, to be more aggressive, more assertive crashing the boards, and to put out a better effort on the rebounding.

It's not a fluke. The way to beat Miami is by beating them on the boards.

I hope our coaching staff took this loss and said a major change was needed.


Most of boxing out and grabbing rebounds is effort but we really need the bigger bodies to make things easier. Even tho Luc Longley wasnt all that, he was big enough to help the Bulls rebounding. Giving Jorts and Pittman a chance probably won't hurt right now. And Chris Bosh seriously needs to man the heck up and tougher down there. Part of the the problem is his effort or lack their of. In games this season there were times when he didn't even attempt to jump for the rebound. Stuff that like is infuriating

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