[Oakland, CA] Last season, the Miami Heat earned a well-deserved reputation for blowing out teams in the first three quarters and then falling apart in the fourth. It was something that they had apparently gotten away from this season.
Late last night – in stunning fashion – the Heat gave up a 17-point lead with 13:15 left in the game and wound up in overtime against the heretofore hapless Golden State Warriors at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, CA. There, they were beat 111-106 having lost all momentum and composure down the stretch.
The Heat even had Dwyane Wade, who was back in business after missing three games with a foot injury. He managed an incredible 34 points, six rebounds and four steals in the losing effort, only the second such defeat for team on the young season.
For Golden State, the hero was the recently-signed Nate Robinson, who went 0-6 in the first three quarters. However, Robinson roared in the fourth by dropping in 15 points, including a pair of arm raising 3-pointers.
Also showing up for the Warriors: forward Dorell Wright and forward-center David Lee. Wright, a former player for Miami, scored 20 points – eight of those in the OT period – and pulled down 10 rebounds. Lee also impressed with 20 points, 14 boards, four steals and three assists.
For Miami, LeBron James managed 26 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists. But his performance was marred by five turnovers and a late-game disappearing act (commence last season flashback now).
“It was great to see Nate Robinson, who people questioned and doubted, [succeed],” said Warriors coach Mark Jackson after the tough win. “I didn’t know what he was when he was on other teams. And I understood the question marks. But I know he’s a fighter. And I know he’s a competitor.”
“And, no pun intended, I know he’s a Warrior. And the guy left it on the floor. Thank God for second chances,” added Jackson.
“Coach just tested us,” said Robinson. “He asked us who wanted it more, us or them. It was us. We just kept staying together throughout the whole game and it showed.”
The Miami Heat are now 8-2 and face the Los Angeles Clippers tonight for another late West Coast contest.
By: Mark Christopher/Sunshine Slate
Image: Golden State Warriors