Bulls have no answer for Bosh
He was in rhythm. He was catching the ball where he wanted. And then midway through the first quarter, he finally saw the ball go through the hoop for the first time.
“That was good enough for me,” Bosh said.
And more than good enough for the Miami Heat—who are now two wins from the NBA finals.
Bosh made 13 of his final 15 shots on the way to a 34-point night, LeBron James finished with 22 points and 10 assists, and the Heat remained unbeaten at home in the postseason by beating the Chicago Bulls, 96-85, in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals on Sunday.
The Heat lead the series 2-1, and the blowout Game 1 defeat in Chicago a week ago seems far, far away for Miami.
Dwyane Wade added 17 points and nine rebounds for Miami, which is 7-0 at home in the playoffs and handed the team that finished with the NBA’s best record its first losing streak since Feb. 5-7. Udonis Haslem sealed it with a jumper with 1:29 left, putting Miami up 93-84.
Game 4 is Tuesday in Miami.
Carlos Boozer finished with 26 points and 17 rebounds for Chicago, which had won the first four meetings of the season with Miami. Derrick Rose finished with 20 points, but made only 8 of his 19 shots from the field.
The Bulls held James and Wade to a combined 12-of-30 showing from the floor. Against Bosh, they had no answer.
“It’s definitely frustrating,” Rose said. “Our will wasn’t there tonight. They still found a way to win.”
Against the NBA’s top field-goal percentage defense this season, Miami shot 51 percent and scored 53 points after halftime.
Plus, the Heat were 25 of 29 from the foul line, while Chicago was 16 for 21.
“Rebounding was good,” Chicago coach Tom Thibodeau said. “Challenging their shots wasn’t.”
Boozer made a pair of free throws with 6:39 left to get Chicago within 78-74, the outcome clearly hanging in the balance. Minutes later, that was no longer the case—not after Miami scored nine straight to build more than enough of a cushion.