Sometimes you can do everything right and still end up losing the game. Wednesday, the Golden State Warriors put up a monumental effort, but ultimately came up short against the Miami Heat 111-110.
Both teams were without key players, as Andrew Bogut sat for the Warrior’s (31-22) with a bruised shoulder and Dwayne Wade was out for the Heat (37-14) with a sore left foot. Advantage Miami, as without Bogut the Warrior’s were often exposed in this game for their lack of interior defense. Without Wade, King James simply shot more, and in this game that ultimately made all the difference.
Once again, the Warriors got off to a slow start at home, falling behind by 11 points at half-time. Things got even worse in the 3rd quarter initially, as the Warrior’s found themselves down by 21 points.
And then the Warriors could not miss, storming back behind incredible shot making by Stephen Curry and timely 3’s from Klay Thompson and Harrison Barnes. The highlight of the game came off a Miami turnover that lead to an Andre Iguodala crossover fast break dunk that brought Oracle’s crowd to a whole other level of cheering.
And then, there was Lebron.
Willing his team to victory, James hit a crucial three pointer to bring Miami back after the Warriors had taken the lead late in the fourth quarter. Down by one point with under 30 seconds to play, Curry hit a miraculous runner and the foul to put the Warrior back on top by two.
Opting not to take the time out available after the free throw, James took the ball to the left wing, and despite great defense from Iguodala, nailed an absolute dagger fallaway three to win the game.
“I was going for the win the whole time. I just wanted to make sure I made it with no time left or missed it with no time left,” said James after the game.
Despite the crushing defeat, Warrior’s coach Mark Jackson had only positive words for his team after the game.
“I told my guys I’m proud of them…we fought, we scratched, we clawed, we got back in the game. We defended, offensively I thought we were in a rhythm, we were unselfish. I was very pleased with the way we battled and competed tonight.”
Obviously the Warriors and Jackson would have preferred entering into the All-Star break on win rather a painful loss like this. King James had other ideas.
“At the end of the day, we witnessed greatness.”