NBA Game Summary - Miami at Charlotte|
(Monday, April 28th)
Final Score: Miami 109, Charlotte 98
Charlotte, NC (SportsNetwork.com) - The anxiety level down in South Beach was
high for several minutes after LeBron James clutched his right leg underneath
the basket in the third quarter.
A hobbled James dispatched any worries shortly thereafter.
James had 31 points, nine assists and seven rebounds and the Miami Heat swept
the Charlotte Bobcats with a 109-98 win on Monday night to advance to the
Eastern Conference semifinals.
At 8:43 of the third quarter, James took a knee to his right thigh from 7-foot
center Bismack Biyombo as he attempted to back Biyombo down along the left
baseline. After losing the ball out of bounds, James hobbled to the Heat bench
during a timeout and received treatment on the thigh.
He returned with a vengeance, scoring the first seven points in a 12-4 Heat
run that staked them to a seven-point advantage.
Miami was never seriously threatened again, earning its second first-round
sweep in a row. The Heat moved to 16-2 in first-round series games during the
"Big Three" era.
James netted 19 points after the injury.
"I'm fortunate we were able to close out tonight and I can give it a little
rest," James said of the injury.
Chris Bosh had 17 points and eight rebounds and Dwyane Wade scored 15 for
second-seeded Miami, which will face either Toronto or Brooklyn in the next
round. That set is tied 2-2 with Game 5 scheduled for Wednesday in Toronto.
Biyombo started for Al Jefferson, the team's leading scorer and rebounder, who
sat out due to a lingering foot injury. He strained the plantar fascia in his
left foot in the first quarter of Game 1 and didn't participate in Monday's
"If you take away the best offensive player from any team in the league it
dramatically changes your team," Bobcats coach Steve Clifford said of
Kemba Walker tallied 29 points, five assists and five rebounds for the
Bobcats, who remained the only current NBA franchise without a playoff win.
The Bobcats will become the Hornets next season.
Charlotte led 62-61 in a back-and-forth tussle where neither team led by more
than five prior to James going down. When he came back in, James and Walker
knocked down 3-pointers before James hit a long left wing jumper with the shot
clock running down.
His steal and layup preceded a James Jones triple, which capped the surge and
gave Miami a 73-66 cushion with 4:54 to go in the third. Norris Cole's left
corner trey with less than a second left in the period increased the advantage
James had nine points and six assists in the third.
Charlotte never got the deficit below seven in the fourth.
Earlier, Walker put in 10 first-quarter points as the Bobcats took their third
first-quarter lead in the series, 27-26. Charlotte held a 54-52 edge at the
Prior to the game, the Heat players showed unity with the Los Angeles Clippers
players over the Donald Sterling controversy.
Like the Clippers did Sunday, Heat players disposed of their white warmup T-
shirts at center court and turned their red warmup jerseys inside out, hiding
the logo during their pregame routine.
Miami scored 22 points off 16 Charlotte turnovers ... The Heat swept the
Milwaukee Bucks last season and have won nine straight series ... There were
17 lead changes and 15 ties in the game.
04/29 00:34:24 ET