Miami rides Heat wave to win East

May, 27, 2011
5/27/11
1:05
AM ET
By ESPN Stats & Info
ESPN.com
Archive
Including the regular season, the Chicago Bulls were 53-0 when leading by double-digits in the fourth quarter. So, with only 3:14 remaining in Game 5, and the Bulls leading by 12 points a win appeared all but certain.

The Miami Heat had other plans though, finishing the game on an 18-3 run to advance to the NBA Finals for the second time in franchise history.

According to 10,000 simulations done by Accuscore.com, the Heat had just a 1 percent chance of winning the game with 3:14 remaining.

Just like it's been all season, the "Big Three" for Miami were at the center of it all, scoring 69 of the team's 83 points, including the last 33.

It wasn't all good for the trio though; through three quarters they combined for as many field goals as turnovers (13).

The main culprit was Dwyane Wade, who committed nine turnovers to tie his playoff career-high and the franchise playoff record.

However, along with LeBron James, the pair came alive scoring 22 points in the final frame, while connecting on their last six field goal attempts, three of which came from behind the 3-point line.

More impressive, and possibly more vital, was the work they did on the defensive end shutting the Bulls down in the half court over the final three minutes.

Miami forced Chicago to commit two turnovers and held them to 1-for-4 shooting down the stretch. On the final possession of the game, despite taking over possession with 16.8 seconds remaining, the best shot the Bulls could come up with was a contested 3-point field goal taken by Derrick Rose.

Chicago's offensive inefficiencies down the stretch speak to the Bulls lack of a reliable second option behind Rose, who took 29 shots, over 35 percent of the team's total field goal attempts in Game 5.

Carlos Boozer, brought in this offseason to help anchor some of the offensive load, was on the bench the entire fourth quarter, along with Joakim Noah. The Bulls finished the season with Kurt Thomas, Ronnie Brewer, Kyle Korver and Taj Gibson on the court with Rose.

Boozer and Noah combined for just 10 points in more than 50 minutes. Without help from the duo, the Bulls finished with a series-low 26 points in the paint, 16 of which came in the first quarter.

In the battle of the past two MVP's, James had the upperhand in the series. After going 0-for-5 from the floor with a turnover when guarded by James in Game 4, Rose struggled again, going 1-for-10 with two turnovers in Game 5. Rose shot 6.3 percent from the floor in the series when defended by James, lowest among any player that defended him on five or more plays.

For the series, Rose really struggled down the stretch, shooting just 21.4 percent from the field after the third quarter. This was magnified down the stretch of games 4 and 5, both close battles, in which Rose was just 3-for-17 combined in the fourth quarter and overtime.

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