Flash Is Back, And So Are Heat’s Big Three

.

SAN ANTONIO – This is what greatness looks like.

Its eyes are cold and deadly. Its arms are long and larcenous. It hangs above the floor like a cloud and it bangs under the basket like a pile driver.

It has a prickly disposition, an inexorable heart. It scores in smothering waves, sudden shuddering tsunamis.

Greatness looks like LeBron James rumbling down the court with the speed and destructive power of a runaway tractor-trailer to score on one possession and pulling up to stab in a 3-pointer on another.

Dwyane Wade's Game 4 shot chart

Dwyane Wade’s Game 4 shot chart

Greatness is the beauty of Dwyane Wade striking like a cobra on the defensive end and then spinning, whirling and making the ball seem to be a yo-yo on the end of a string as he shows off an assortment of his offensive tricks.

Greatness is the mercurial Chris Bosh rebounding with a purpose, snarling and guarding the rim like a Doberman.

On any night when Miami’s Big Three remember who they were supposed to be, the game and opposition are almost secondary to the performance. The only thing lacking is a soundtrack.

This was the Heat the way they were bought and assembled nearly three years ago, cocky, confident and, OK, a little bit irritated, playing with a combination of swagger and defensiveness. Between them they piled up 85 points, 30 rebounds, 10 steals and five blocked shots.

Here is Miami in The Finals for the third straight season and yet the Heat were being asked to show their credentials because they were having trouble putting together back-to-back victories lately in these playoffs.

After failing to score 20 points in any of the first three games of the series, James alone was back to being poked, prodded and suspected of having enough emotional loose change to feed every vending machine in the Institute of Pop Psychology.

Bosh was again the guy whose mood and production seemed to glide on the breeze like dandelion spores.

But if anyone needed to bounce back to reclaim his reputation as something more than 31-year-old with a bum knee on the down side of his career, it was Wade.

This then was his flashback to 2006 when he was unflappable and unstoppable and was so often a virtual one-man show in carrying Miami to its first NBA championship long before all of this Big Three hoopla was even imagined.

It was, in short: Flash, back.

There were all of the leaps, defensive plays, bottling up would-be Spurs drivers to the hoop, stepping into the passing lanes, flicking at loose balls and coming up with a half dozen steals that sent James and himself and the Heat transition game into overdrive.

This was the maestro who used to hold the baton and lead the orchestra before James brought his talents to South Beach and made him move over a chair to second fiddle.

“Yeah, I needed a game like this, but my teammates needed a game like this from me,” Wade said. “Needed me to be aggressive. Needed me to play the way I’m capable of.

“Most important, they needed the Big Three to play the way we’re capable of. They depend on us a lot. We love our teammates and we can’t win without them. (But) we’re not going to win this series if myself, Chris and LeBron don’t show up to play on a consistent basis.”

It was a game that saw Wade’s eyes practically grow as big as saucers when he saw himself being guarded by 6-foot-11 Tiago Splitter.

“I was glad I had the ball in my hand,” he said.

For the first time in the series, all of the Big Three actually looked happy to be there.

With his 33 points, James avoided being held under 20 points four consecutive times in the playoffs for the first time in his career.

For Wade, his line — 32 points, six assists, four rebounds and six steals — showed quite simply that he’s still got it. It was the most he’s scored since March 4 at Minnesota. And after scoring just a combined eight second-half points in the first three games of The Finals, he put the Spurs away with 18 after halftime for the 109-93 win.

This was the vintage Wade, soaring above the shoulders of the taller Tim Duncan and Splitter to grab offensive rebounds to give the Heat another chance. He made mid-range jumpers look as easy as slipping the key into your front door. He devoured the basket on fast breaks. And it was that defensive fire and intensity disrupting things from start to finish that told you he meant business. After all, at 2-2, everything the Heat have been playing for is still right there. At 3-1, it would have been sliding over the edge.

It might as well have been a page out of an old scrapbook for the way Wade went out hitting 14 of 25 shots and oozing confidence.

“The 25 shots let me know that he was aggressive, every shot that he took,” James said. “He wasn’t passive. He came off, they went under (picks), he shot his jumper. In transition he attacked the rim. He continued to attack throughout the game.

“No matter how great you are, no matter what your resume is, to have a game like this, it lets you know that you’re still one bad — you know the next two words. I can’t say, my kids might be watching. That dude was amazing. Like I said, he was ’06 Flash tonight.”

A reminder of what greatness looks like.

81 Comments

  1. cracked says:

    Its such as you learn my mind! You appear to grasp a lot about this, such as you wrote the e book in it or something. I feel that you just could do with some % to force the message home a bit, however instead of that, this is wonderful blog. A fantastic read. I’ll definitely be back.

  2. DriveFerFive says:

    Heat played a great game Thursday, Spurs were in slop mode, Van Dumby said it best Thursday nite, “the Heat are moving the ball well, they looked like, well, they look like the Spurs”. Look for the Heat to get Pop-ped in Game 5, and Kawhi will make his run for MVP by containing LBJ…. not sure who the biggest “superstar” underachiever in the, but I expect Bosh to present his case Sunday and possibly dethrone Dwight Howard for that title with another lame showing to follow a mediocre Game 4

  3. Murray says:

    Good to see a glimpse of the old Wade. Lets hope he keeps that level of play up. As well as Bosh :) it’ll still be a 7 game series though. No idea who will win. Lets go Heat!

  4. Big Al says:

    Spurs live on Parker and three-pointers, sometimes Duncan. With the right mindset, the Heat can take care of these factors and take the series into their own hands. The final outcome all depends on how Miami will play from Game 5 onwards. I’m glad that the area downtown has been looked after much better than when San Antonio was raining treys. Tony’s injury seemed to have caught up with him after the first half, and Bosh matched old Tim’s points total in this game. If they continue on like this, then the trophy is all but held.

  5. Big Al says:

    Game 4 showed the difference between a really good team and the Miami Heat. LeBron is back to being LeBron once and for all. Dwyane visits the Wade of old. And both took Bosh along. The partners-in-crime combined for 65 points with 25 shot attempts each, and their quiet, lanky friend added a respectable 20 points that were shot mostly at the right spots.

  6. Nerd says:

    I am just amazed on how many calls were called on the Spurs as fouls when the DIVAS of the HEAT are also the so called “BIG THREE” are the biggest “FLOPERS IN THEWORLD”!!!!!

  7. NOT A FAN OF not a kobe fan either says:

    HEY IM TALIKING TO YOU, YEAH YOU!

    not a kobe fan either
    June 13, 2013 at 12:11 am

    you lebron fans, wew. why can’t you just understand?
    Lebron is a fake. a big fake. The king of choke.

    before the finals series james said: im 30, 40, 50 times better than the ’07 finals.

    right after game 3: i’ve got to play better.

    WTH??”

    what can you say about his game 4 performance? Still a choke? Get a life LOSER!!!

  8. BallDontLie says:

    It’s true that the Heat are almost unstoppable when everyone in the big 3 gets going, but the fact is that they have trouble making sure Lebron, Wade and Bosh are all having good games. At the same time, it’s hard to stop Parker, Duncan and Ginobili. Both teams have a big 3 and great role players, it’s just a matter of who steps up at the right time.

    Never count the Spurs out.

  9. Arnel says:

    I am a HEAT fan but i know the series is far from over granted the big three finally showed up. But remember they showed up on game 4. we do not know if they will still be there in game 5. SPURS is great team also. Duncan might be a little old, Ginobili might not be there yet but the MIAMI need not to relax. When these two players (TD and Gi) are in tune, plus TP, SPURS will be touch to beat as well. I know Popo will come up with something better that will make MIAMI a little off balance next game. Popo is a great coach and he knows what to do, knows what to adjust so HEAT better be ready for anything that SPURS can throw at them next game. You all know what’s exciting though? If the SPURS big 3 and MIAMI’s big three play great in game 5, that will be the battle everyone will remember. As for me when that happens.., may the best team win.

  10. leston says:

    yea baby we some bad @ #…i cant type the rest my kids might be reading this.,. lol ha hah haha haha
    heat in 6

  11. cruzeroheat says:

    if wade and james scores 30 apiece the heat will be unstoppable, if bosh scores 20 and grabs 10 rebounds, this series is over, on the other hand, if TP will continue to be unguardable(i doubt that cause of the injury) spurs stand a chance, if their shooters hit from three, they will win this series, unless miami will stop doing what they did tonight against the 3′s of the spurs, i highly doubt this series will go the spurs’ way, this game was their best chance to grab the title. by the way, you think why TP was a havoc in the paint? it’s because the heat’s defense is concentrated on the shooters. maybe that’s a better plan, i will take the contested layup(not in the flow of the spurs’ offense), rather than three’s with unbelievable accuracy(obviously the best way the spurs play). heat in 6.

  12. The spurs are an amazing team, Duncan is a legend,Parker is the best pg in the world, coach Pop is a genious!But The Heat has the best player in the world in Lebron James and a great D-Wade is back!Heat in 7!

  13. MIA says:

    OH WERE ARE ALL THE HATERZ AT BY THE WAY THEY SURELY GOT REALLY QUIET

  14. MIA says:

    great job of Lebron for keeping his word and D-WADE FOR GOING HAM and CB for making his presence known and for scoring 20 pts and getting some great blocks

  15. xSTNG says:

    Heat in 6. great job Dwayne wade. Proud to have you back

  16. AL says:

    I have been a Heat fan since Riley joined the organization in the 90s & I love Haslem but Lebron at power forward is sublime.

  17. AL says:

    what a bold move to start Miller in place of Haslem, it made Popovic to react in 47 seconds. Remember this is the line-up that won them the championship last year & they started the season the same way with Lebron at power forward (with Battier at 3), be sure that Popovic will make adjustments & the Heat should anticipate that, but what a move , it opened a lot of space for James & wade. I hope they can keep it up. GO HEAT…………………………..

  18. Mitra says:

    I was speechless when I saw Wade of 2006. Miami figured things out finally. I see some tough times coming up for Spurs. But again, Spurs is a different animal under Coach Pop.

    So, writing them off in this series? no way!!

    With the three-game series now, Miami has an edge because they will have home court advantage twice. That much -but who knows what would be Spurs’ adjustment and Heat’s repetition of Game 4 performance in Game 5 and 6 especially..

    The series has become very interesting.

    Mitra

  19. ko0kiE says:

    vintage wade… his instincts on the defensive end were superb..

  20. Erlo says:

    I must say one thing. YEs Dwayne Wade was brilliant last night, but by no means did ‘mid-range jumpers look as easy as slipping the key into your front door’. This was were his game FAILED. Yes he scored at will under the rim, but his mid range jumper was garbage. Just one look at a shot chart (right on this page too, all red) shows this.

  21. Danger high voltage says:

    why is it game 5 is still far away.?:l

  22. kobeballhog says:

    haters go back to your caves your ball hog Kobe ain’t playing anymore this is where the real TEAMS are, not a one man ball hogging show.

  23. mee(a)t says:

    I’m happy about wade’s performance too but you people gotta calm down…its one game.

  24. waiting for next regular season says:

    Lebron travels like Harden and throws elbows on his way to the basket which should be called offensive fouls (and don’t misunderstand, I am not a Spurs fan)

  25. mehr says:

    Congratulation to Miami for their very good game.
    You are the best team in NBA. Just play hard and you will win

  26. SM says:

    Miami is a better team than SA and they should not tolerate in game 5.
    Better team must win it all.
    LBJ, Wade, Bosh, Allen and the rest of the team must play aggressive the whole 48 minutes. No rest or relaxation.
    Miami deserve to be the champ.
    Attack their rim the whole game. You will win game 5 and 6.

  27. sleggs says:

    I love watching the Heat, but the L-W-L-W routine drives me insane! I won’t watch game-5. Instead, I’ll collect honey from an Africanized beehive while wearing only a speedo. That will be less stressful. –D

    • Can_we_just_see_good_basketball? says:

      I’ll help too. Teamwork! If nothing else, a partner in insanity lol

  28. #1 HEAT FAN says:

    Get that NASTY-VICH out of HERE !!!

    GO HEAT !!!! game 5 is in the bag !

  29. luci1119 says:

    It was a pure joy to see Flash come back and do what he did, in 2006. I hope & pray that his knees will be on their best behavior for the next few games. I must say that it just amaze me how the *Heat*, can turn up the heat, when they want to. It’s like they pick and choose, when they’re gonna outscore the opposing team. It’s like they decide that they’re gonna win. I’m proud to say that they brought a great game last night, it was a thriller, and i looked forward to their every ball possession, just to watch how they would handle things. Let’s go *Heat*, WTG

  30. rui3 says:

    We have no fear,Flash is Here!!

  31. rui3 says:

    MV3 MV3 MV3

    Brave heart WADE!!! Touching game for HIM.Thank You Wade..you are the best…also injured

  32. $tern's for Hire says:

    And so did the other “BIG 3″, that being the Refs. That much was obvious seconds into the tip.

    David Stern: You sir, are a disgrace to commissionership. The NBA has become a laughing stock where the chances of officials influencing a game’s outcome are BIG.

    Stuff your rigged sport commissioner! I won’t so much as even buy one more ticket next season to support your crock!

    • 34yr fan says:

      ….yeah….5K flops are worth it….it is like us paying 20 bucks to have an influence on a play or the whole game…..

  33. JimD54 says:

    The Heat played will last night and the Spurs didn’t, I have to give it to them, they won last night and looked like the better team, if they can keep it going like that, they deserve to win……

  34. Sean says:

    Euro-Step, D-Wade schooled Neal …….Flash is Back!!!!!!!!!

  35. Lord P says:

    What a game by the Big 3..Wade was phenomenal..he showed to the whole world who is the fundament of the Heat..Huge game ball..don’t forget Chris Bosh Defensive intensity..he was in a dog fight the whole game..never seen him so solid like last night protecting the rim..playing a tremendous D on Timmy and still manage to net 20 points..What a performance!!Lebron gave us every bit of energy he had..let’s go Heat

  36. james primes says:

    Bron n wade bofh hit 30 dis.series is over if they continue to play aggressive like that its not just the points the whole miami team was moving at a different only question is why do they wait till there back is against the wall before theythey show this kind of effort cmon bron

    • 34yr fan says:

      Miami played great…..great defense/blocks & great game by James and Bosh as well …but a really Outstanding game by Wade …..kudos…….. Spurs on the other hand didn’t play great…..too may turnovers-many of them unforced and Manu is in a slump…..but hand it to the Heat They were just great !!….the one thing that was a lame point was the 5K flop by Bosh……took away some ‘mo’ and 2 points…..so I guess flops ARE worth it, huh NBA??

  37. ajoy says:

    Wiating for game 5. was in US for last 2 finals. Wiating for this to be a Miami win – from India.

  38. Nicolas says:

    Go HEAT!!!! Untill the END AND VICORY!!!

    SERBIA IS ON YOUR SIDE!!!

    BEST OF LUCK JAMES, WADE AND BOSCH!!!!!!!!!!

    No afraid, no fear, only STRENGTH AND VICTORY!!!

  39. Blinebury put it simply the best way possible “Flash, back”

  40. j says:

    The refing is a joke. All the heat do is flop and get star treatment.

    • Erlo says:

      Quit crying. The reffing is SO even it’s not even funny. Stop making excuses. The Heat are by far the better team, you just don’t want ot admit it.

    • theholyspectator says:

      dont know if you watched the game but the free throws favored spurs 31-17. 19 turnovers for the Spurs to the Heat’s 9, must be the officials fault too right?

      • AJ says:

        above comment is more then correct… if anything calls that night in spurs favor if you wanna choose sides.. HEAT in 6

  41. aron says:

    And some fickle Heat fans had the audacity to suggest benching Wade after game 3. Now they get to eat crow and hopefully stop doubting Flash. Wade has always been the first Miami Heat superstar and its unfair to call him out for his subpar performance in the past few games he’s played.

    Look, his ailing. His playing through whatever pain he is in right now and he has proven himself time and time again that he has always been a closer and Miami’s first saving grace. He was the one who brought the first ring to Miami. He was the face on the franchise for at least a decade or so.. It’s sad that some fans who are fickle don’t have his back whenever he’s struggling. Choosing instead to bash the man!!! how cruel is that!

    Without Wade, the Miami heat would have never won a championship. And lastly without Wade, Lebron would have never taken his talents to south beach!

  42. Gilbs says:

    That’s for sure guys!!! Miami Heat will win game 5 and game 6…

  43. Well we’ll well all of u who put my man FLASH in a wheel chair.HaHaHa on you. The man is still the best one on the court when it counts. Remember when he always took the ball and the game in his hands well he’s still there. Heat win big next 2games and win in Six. Thanks for the memories D Wade,we love you man.

    • Dwade fan in Sweden says:

      Dwade is the Heat,Heart and the Soul of Miami and D is the reason why I take my family to Miami every year. What an ICON !!!

  44. Wilt #13 says:

    I’m not a heat fan or a spurs fan,I’m a warriors fan.
    But I really think the team who will win game 5 will win it all.
    The Big 3 need to play like this and even better if they want to win back-to-back games in san antonio.
    Its going to be hard because the spurs are really a great team and know how to act when they’re back are against the wall.
    The Team who wants it more,and be ready will win game 5.
    This is one of the best finals I will ever watch because of the machups.
    Great coach’s.
    4 hall of famers in both teams[LBJ,WADE,BOSH,DUNCAN,MANU,PARKER,ALLEN.MACGRADY]
    One team who loves to run and play fast and the other likes to take it slow.
    Just a great seires so far!
    Sorry for my english!

    • TeamOrNothing says:

      Your English is fine. You’re the only comment on this post that is actually thinking, and not caught up in the hype. Anyone naive enough to think that just because James, Wade, and Bosh showed up tonight the series is over are fooling themselves. If they do show up again, yes, Miami will be tough to beat, but San Antonio is not going to throw up their hands and surrender just because King James tells them to bow. They will make adjustments and come back just as hard. I don’t see San Antonio losing 2 games in a row on their home court. Just like I don’t see Miami losing game 6 at home. This will go to 7 games, and the team that shows up in Miami for game 7 will take the trophy home. This is still anybody’s series.

      • KunJay says:

        I mean San Antonio is good, but unless they are hitting all thsoe 3′s consistently they don’t have much chance.

      • 34yr fan says:

        Spurs don’t need to “hit all those 3′s” to win……just one timely (incredible) shot by Parker did the trick …………….at their house even !! ….just sayin’

  45. r1ns0 says:

    This is the final matchup the everyone expected. There are reasons they are the last two teams standing here. I personally think this series is more of a chess match where both coaches try to adjust and execute the adjusted game plan. I’m a believer in stats, trends, history. Looking at the pattern, the Spurs will again take the lead in this final series.

  46. baboy says:

    BIG 3 WENT HAM!

  47. LeggoHEAT says:

    video game wade ftw!

  48. ryde says:

    As the saying goes… Never underestimate the heart of a champion.
    D-Wade is a true champion.

  49. J says:

    good on d wade!
    lebron got that 3 at the end just so he was the leading scorer funny
    heat in 6!!!

  50. steppx says:

    what an absurd article.

    • KunJay says:

      It is a marvelous article, well written and filled with truth. It just hurts you because you are not a Heat fan. But let’s get real everybody knows when the big 3 show up there’s no competition.

  51. Jordan says:

    Won’t be surprised if my Heat goes 4-2 now. Spurs know they can’t handle Heat’s big 3 when they play like themselves. If Spurs weren’t hitting lucky 3s, they would have gone 4-0 in this series. Sad.

  52. LBJ says:

    Heat in 6! and King James get his 2nd rings!!

  53. IAMAHEATFAN says:

    I am absolutely glad of Wade’s performance! he’s still the heart of this team (i admit, though i’m an avid fan of the King). i’m just hoping that this will continue until this series is finally done. btw, congrats CB for finally showing up! great hustle plays! & for you my King, thanks for keeping up ur word. now, this is the so-called Big 3!

  54. AM says:

    Finally the big three showed up. If they had done it before, the series would not be tied at 2-2

  55. MANILABOY PHILIPPINES says:

    HATERS GONE LIKE TP.. NOTHIN TO SAY HUH???? NOBODY IN NBA CAN BEAT THE HEAT TWICE IN A ROW AYT.. TAKE DAT.. AS FAR AS THERE IS HATERS MIAMI WILL SHOW HOW GREAT THEY ARE.. AS JAMES SAID I DONT GET INVOLVED TO THE PEOPLE SAY.. THAT’S THE DIFFERENCE OF MIA TO THE OTHER TEAM.. LIKE ONE IN SOUTH CALI HEHEHEHHE.. YOU CANNOT BEAT MIAMI TWICE IN A ROW.. YOU CAN BEAT THEM BUT THEY KNOW HOW TO BOUNCE BACK UNLIKE OTHERS.. THAT’S WHY MIAMI HEAT HAVE MANY HATERS COZ THEIR ARE GREAT TEAMMM..

  56. I love the heat because they never let me down I just knew that they were gonna win yesturdays game. I mean come on now Lebron James and Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh, Mr. Miller, Ray Allen, Chaslem, and all the great players on this team may GOD BLESS U WONDERFUL ATHLETES WITH A CHAMPIONSHIP

  57. MANILABOY PHILIPPINES says:

    where’s the haters probably haters gone too huh lol

  58. pain@18 says:

    If big 3 keep this up for next 2 games?..
    Hand that Larry O to the heat..
    And heat will concentrate on the next goal.. “Grandslam”

  59. Jerome says:

    Happy for Wade.
    Fun to watch the Big 3 in Action tonight.

    Its best of 3 now..

  60. zeero says:

    yeah,one game at a time,go heat take game 5!