On March 4, coming off a loss to the Orlando Magic in which they led by 24 points in the second half, the Miami Heat suffered their worst loss of the season, a 30-point defeat at the hands of the San Antonio Spurs.
Just 10 days later the tide turned as the Heat won their third straight game, and second consecutive game by at least 30 points, in their destruction of the Spurs.
This is the last meeting between the Spurs and Heat this season. Elias tells us this is just the second time in NBA history that two teams met exactly twice in a season and exchanged 30-point wins. The only other time it happened was between the Knicks and Mavericks last season.
In the teams' last meeting San Antonio shot 56.1 percent, the highest field goal percentage any team has shot against Miami this season. Tonight the Spurs were held to just 38.3 percent shooting, their fifth-worst performance this season.
Spurs' Catch-and-Shoot FG Attempts
This Season vs Heat
The biggest difference came on catch and shoot situations. According to video surveillance, in the March 4 matchup the Spurs shot 60.0 percent on catch and shoot attempts, including 15-for-22 from three-point range. In tonight's game the Heat held them to just 38.7 percent on those attempts, including only 5-for-20 from three.
Since expressing frustration about not receiving enough touches after last week's loss against the Trail Blazers, Bosh has averaged 24.0 points per game over his last three games, almost six points higher than his season average.
Elsewhere around the NBA:
Durant• Kevin Durant notched his 100th career 30-point game in the Oklahoma City Thunder’s win against the Washington Wizards. According to Elias, Durant is the fifth-fastest since the NBA/ABA merger (1976-77), in terms of games played, to reach 100 career 30-point games. This was just his 298th career game.
• No one has appreciated Deron Williams' arrival in New Jersey more than Kris Humphries (16 points, 15 rebounds) who picked up his seventh consecutive double-double in the New Jersey Nets' win over the Boston Celtics. The last Nets player with at least seven straight games of 10 points and 10 rebounds was Keith Van Horn in the 1999-00 season.
• The Celtics have now lost five straight times in the second game of a back-to-back, and are just 6-8 overall in such games. The Celtics’ age may finally be showing. Boston has the fourth-oldest NBA roster with an average age of 29 years, 150 days old.