File this game under: “Things That Make You Go Huh?” The Miami Heat went into the Oracle Arena in Oakland on Tuesday night with the best record in the Association as they took on the Golden State Warriors. The home team; although not as bad as the Washington Wizards came into the contest with a record of 2-6. Most NBA observers expected that the Heat would continue their winning streak and get themselves a lopsided victory on their West Coast stop. Apparently the team from Golden State did not receive that memo; as they not only took Miami to overtime, they won the game by a final score of 111-106.
The Warriors went into the Tuesday night affair without one of their core players; guard Stephen Curry, but it did not seem to have a detrimental effect on his club. Nate Robinson came off the bench and dropped 24 points, Monta Ellis added another 22 points while David Lee and Dorell Wright each racked up a double-double and both players scored 20 points in the game. Dwyane Wade came back from an injured foot with strong game knocking down 34 points while LeBron James had a double-double with 26 points in the loss. James and starting point guard Mario Chalmers were plagued with fouls throughout the night each ending with five.
One factor that may not be taken into account is the fact that the Warriors new bench boss Mark Jackson was an analyst for ESPN during last season’s Playoffs; and he had quite a bit of exposure to the Heat especially in last June’s NBA Finals. Did that help Jackson to formulate a plan to derail the Heat due to all the information he learned last season? We shall see if anyone picks that up in the next couple of days.
After the two opponents exchanged the lead constantly through the opening minutes of the first, Wright buried a 24 foot trey with 6:54 giving the Warriors the upper hand at 13-12. Golden State maintained their advantage through the rest of the period and would be on top 27-22 at the end of the quarter. The contest remained tight for most of the second but Miami after trailing 47-46 got hot down the stretch and ended the period on an 11-6 run. As the two teams walked into their locker rooms as the game reached the half the Heat would be ahead 57-53.
Miami appeared as if they were ready to get serious in third and it looked like they just about had the game locked up as they would lead 84-72 at the end of the period. However, the Warriors were not about to go meekly into the night.
With 1:44 left in the fourth Robison hit a technical shot at the line which capped off an 8-0 Warriors run and the game was knotted up at 93-93. The Heat went up by three points, but their advantage would grasp away as Wright buried a 26 foot trey with 31 seconds on the clock. Neither tea, could score anymore in regulation and the game went to extra period tied at 96-96. The score once again changed hands repeatedly in the opening moments of the overtime, however Wright made two key plays; knocking down yet another three-point shot as well as slamming the rock through the hole with authority for what would turn out to be the winning points. Miami never recovered and the Warriors sent their fans home happy bu exhausted.
Robinson knocked down 24 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds and 4 steals while Ellis had 22 points, 3 assists, 3 rebounds, 3 steals and a block. Lee dropped 20 points, grabbed 14 boards, 4 steals and 3 assists while Wright added 20 points, 10 rebounds, a block and a steal.
Wade had a game high 34 points, 6 rebounds, 4 steals, 2 assists and a block while James added 26 points, 11 rebounds, 7 assists and 2 steals. Chris Bosh scored 16 points, 4 rebounds, a block and a steal while Chalmers chipped in 12 points in the loss. Warriors improve to 3-6 and will head to Orlando to face the Magic Thursday while Miami is now 8-2 and they travel to the Staples Center to take on the Clippers on Wednesday.