NBA Finals: Miami ties series with Nuggets at 1-1 after shooting well from 3-point range.

Miami bounced back in the NBA Finals, tying the series 1-1 against the Nuggets with their improved three-point shooting.

Image Credit: Sportstar

Kevin Love observed Game 6 and Game 7 against the Boston Celtics while positioned on the Miami Heat's sideline, wearing both home white and road black attire. He also witnessed Game 1 of the NBA Finals versus Denver without participating in any playing time.

However, Love, the 34-year-old power forward known for his ability to stretch the floor, was finally called upon by the Heat in Game 2 of the NBA Finals. This decision proved beneficial as Miami took a commanding 21-10 lead in the first quarter.

Although Love did not provide the solution to slow down Nikola Jokić, who had an impressive performance with 41 points and 11 rebounds, his presence added size to the Heat's lineup and countered Denver's unpredictable offense.

While Love only contributed 6 points and 10 rebounds, his ability to stretch the floor further complemented Miami's skilled passing attack. Together, they successfully converted 17 out of 35 three-pointers, leading to Miami's 111-108 triumph over the Nuggets and leveling the championship series at 1-1.

In the early stages, Max Strus managed to successfully sink his first three three-pointers after missing all 10 of his field goal attempts in Game 1. Gabe Vincent, the exceptional point guard for the Heat, converted 4 out of 6 shots from beyond the arc, leading the team with 23 points.

Additionally, Duncan Robinson scored 8 points within the initial minute of the fourth quarter, playing a crucial role in Miami's comeback. This reversed the trend of bench units chipping away at the lead and changed the dynamics of the game.

During the final quarter, Miami only missed one shot in the first 7 minutes, embarking on a 12-4 run that culminated in Bam Adebayo's layup, which resulted in a three-point play. This extended the Heat's largest lead from the first quarter, granting them a 104-93 advantage.

Both teams managed to overcome significant deficits in the second half and engaged in a fierce battle, with the pace of the game slowing down, reminiscent of a car's tires struggling through mud. This type of situation has been where the Miami team has excelled throughout the entire postseason.

The Heat's defense noticeably intensified, particularly with Adebayo's physicality as he matched up against Jokić, who was making powerful moves in the paint. Miami took a calculated risk of potentially being exploited by Jokić's passing skills, as he had demonstrated in Game 1 by distributing 14 assists.

However, in the second half, the Heat relentlessly sent a second defender to challenge Jokić, positioning them at the elbows and on the blocks.

Denver's supporting shooters were unable to take advantage when the ball was swung their way. Even a notable highlight from the first half, involving a quick passing sequence between Murray, Jokić, and Gordon resulting in an easy layup, was overshadowed by the Heat's suffocating defense in the second half.

Despite Jokić's impressive scoring performance, the Nuggets struggled to find a consistent rhythm on offense, which had been their trademark of balance and ease throughout much of the postseason. While Jokić took a brief rest, Jamal Murray spearheaded a surge in the second quarter for Denver, hitting a series of crucial three-pointers during crunch time.

However, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope only managed to score 6 points on four shot attempts, making a relatively quiet contribution. Michael Porter Jr., who has made strides in addressing issues with shot selection and defensive awareness, struggled with questionable shot choices, often taking step-back shots that were not ideal.

Image Credit: CBS Sports

He also failed to stay on top of his defensive assignments, losing track of Gabe Vincent on multiple occasions when he was left wide open beyond the arc due to Porter's defensive lapses amidst Miami's offensive actions.

Adebayo deserves recognition for his exceptional performance on both ends of the court, shooting 8-of-14 and demonstrating his versatility. He finished the game with 21 points and 9 rebounds, all while bravely facing the forceful drives of Jokić in the restricted area.

Although Adebayo's scoring efficiency has fluctuated throughout Miami's journey to the Finals, he consistently excels in games where he aggressively attacks the basket with the intention of scoring, greatly benefiting the Heat's pursuit of a championship.

Jimmy Butler, contributing to the team's success, scored 21 points, with 7 of them coming in the crucial fourth quarter. He showcased his skills by sinking a three-pointer from the corner and converting two baskets off the dribble in the midrange, displaying his ability to create scoring opportunities for himself.

Game 3 will take place in Miami on Wednesday, marking a shift in the series. It is likely that Love will continue to be part of the Heat's starting lineup, a position he assumed in place of forward Caleb Martin. Martin had made a notable impact during the Eastern Conference finals but missed practice due to illness over the weekend.

Despite his condition, he managed to play for 21 minutes, scoring 3 points on 1-of-3 shooting. Returning to their home court, where shooters often benefit from the familiarity of the rim, combined with a few days for players like Martin to recover, as well as the potential return of scoring guard Tyler Herro, indicates that this series is far from over. The Heat still have opportunities to make a significant impact and turn the tide in their favor.

Post a Comment