Updated: January 14, 2012, 1:46 AM ET

LeBron James 13-20 FG | 6-11 FT | 5 REB | 6 AST | 35 PTS | -16

As Brian Windhorst noted, the Heat might have set an NBA record for fastest end-to-end fast break with 1 second elapsed when Dwyane Wade threw a baseball pass to LeBron early. James finally gave into 3-point shooting, hitting his first two 3-pointers of the season. He had hiccups at the free throw line again, but the Heat had no answers for the Nuggets.

Dwyane Wade 6-14 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 6 AST | 12 PTS | -9

Wade finished the game in the locker room with a right ankle injury, giving him two bum feet. With a flood of Tim Tebow jerseys in attendance, Wade threw a 30-yard bullet downfield to LeBron to start an early Heat run. After his Tebow act, Wade filled up the box score outside the points column but didn't attack the rim with his usual tenacity -- check the empty free throw column.

Chris Bosh 6-15 FG | 5-5 FT | 8 REB | 2 AST | 17 PTS | -17

Bosh was overshadowed by LeBron in the first half, but he came out scoring in bunches. It happens. Bosh played solid defense but struggled to handle Nene one-on-one. He played inside-out with a series of buckets underneath, a good sign for Bosh's aggressiveness. But with Wade taking a back seat, the Heat needed Bosh to step up, and he couldn't hit a shot.


Simply put, the Nuggets beat the Heat at their own game. Trying to play a fast tempo in the Mile High City is always a dubious game plan, especially after coming off a back-to-back, but the Nuggets were far more potent in the open court. The Heat got hammered in fast-break points, which is not a recipe for success.

Denver Nuggets

The Nuggets spaced the floor and balanced their attack, which is what the Heat expected. Problem is, the Heat couldn't stop the expected. The Nuggets dropped 12 bombs from downtown, tying the Heat's high for allowed 3-balls. Count Ty Lawson as another elite point guard who tore up the Heat. The Heat have dropped three straight; is it time to sound the sirens?

-- Grades by Tom Haberstroh


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