After pouring in 32 points against the Jazz, LeBron now stands just 18 points from reaching 20,000 for his career. Credit him for bringing the Heat nearly all the way back from a 21-point deficit with Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh apparently benched for the decisive fourth quarter. But it was too deep of a hole for even the game's best two-way player to overcome.
That's back-to-back low-impact games for Wade. The difference was he wasn't needed much to get by Sacramento. Coach Erik Spoelsta's decision to bench Wade the entire fourth at Utah will certainly stir controversy. Maybe Wade refused to go back in even after Bosh was thrown a lifeline to close out the game. The team avoided this type of adversity much of this season. Now they're deep in it.
It was only a couple of days earlier when Bosh suggested he'd be willing to sit and learn from others on the team if he was considered the problem with Miami's recent rebounding struggles. After seeing the Jazz double up the Heat on the boards midway through game, Bosh saw that notion come to fruition against the Jazz. And the Heat paid for it.
With Shane Battier sitting out his third straight game with a hamstring injury, Lewis was able to emerge from his deep freeze in the rotation and have his best game of the season. He was the surprise choice in Spoelstra's rotation when the Heat made a run to get back into the game. Lewis and Ray Allen combined for 23 points on 8-for-16 shooting from the field.
The Jazz raced out to a 21-point lead and then had to hold off a furious Heat rally to close out the game. They did it largely by outrebounding the Heat 40-23, including 13 offensive rebounds. Miami had no answer for the relentless effort on the glass yet again.