Sunday, April 15, 2012
Heat & Lakers survive on Sunday
The Heat and Lakers both emerged victorious Sunday afternoon, as Miami clinched the Southeast Division, and Los Angeles moved a game and a half ahead of the Clippers in the Pacific Division.
The Heat relied on their Big Three, and the Lakers leaned on their two bigs, as we learn from diving into the numbers...
Heat 93, Knicks 85
Miami snapped New York's nine-game home win streak, thanks to a combined 73 points from the trio of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh.
Those three scored 78.5 percent of the Heat's points, their highest percentage in a Miami win this season. With 16 points and 14 rebounds, Bosh recorded his first double-double and second double-digit rebounding game since the All-Star break.
Carmelo Anthony kept the game close with 42 points, the most any player has scored against the Heat this season.
But Anthony got little help from the other Knicks starters, who combined for 19 points. This was the first time since the NBA-ABA merger that the Knicks had a player score 40 or more points with no other starter reaching double figures.
Carmelo Anthony scored 26 of his 42 points on isolation plays, his most points on such plays this season and the most allowed by the Heat.
Lakers 112, Mavericks 108 (OT)Los Angeles improved to 4-1 without Kobe Bryant this season, in large part because of two Pau Gasol three-pointers in overtime. This is the first time Gasol has made two or more treys in a game for the Lakers. He previously did it twice with the Grizzlies, most recently over five years ago in December 2006.
The Lakers have won six straight versus Dallas, and they swept the four-game season series from the Mavericks. The Elias Sports Bureau tells us that the last time a team won all four games of a season series against the defending champion was five years ago, when the Magic swept the Heat.
Since the Mavericks eliminated Los Angeles in four games in last season's Western Conference Semifinals, it's also the fourth time ever that a team swept the season series against the same team that swept them the previous postseason.
Gasol finished with 20 points and 10 rebounds, and Andrew Bynum had 23 points and 16 boards, marking the third time this season they each posted 20 and 10 in the same game.
The Mavericks lost despite scoring 108 points, ending their 18-game win streak when scoring 100 or more points.