Playing the four and embracing it are two different things. But James unquestionably did both Saturday and flourished in his unfamiliar role as a post presence. From the get-go, James looked for the ball on the block, repeatedly backed down his defenders and even flashed a baby hook shot at one point. He looked as comfortable as ever as a pseudo-big man while still keeping his teammates involved.
A late scratch due to a migraine, Wade gets some much-needed rest before the Heat play again on Thursday at Madison Square Garden.
Sitting out with a bum ankle for the third consecutive game, the former Raptor will have to wait before facing off against his old team in his new digs in Miami.
The Heat are glad to have you aboard, Mike. As far as breakout performances go, you'd be hard-pressed to find a better one than Miller's. One half was all Miller needed to double his point total (15) on the season, which says as much about his rough start as anything. Without Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade, the sharpshooter looked for his shot seemingly every possession down the court, something he's rarely done in a Heat uniform. His 22-point second quarter goes down as one of the team's highlights of the season.
Saturday was the five-year anniversary of Kobe Bryant's 81-point manifesto against Toronto. And for a while it looked like the short-handed Raptors would celebrate by lying down and letting the Heat walk all over them Saturday night. The Raptors had only nine players dress and they could have used all nine on the court with the way they hemorrhaged points to the even more short-handed Heat.