Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili played well, but their performances were not enough to overcome an outstanding comeback game from LeBron James, who finished with 35 points and 10 rebounds, while shooting an efficient 14-of-22 from the floor. He came out aggressive in the paint and was able to establish his perimeter shooting later in the game. It was clear from the start James was determined to prove his doubters wrong and put any questions of his toughness to rest.
Neither cramps nor the Spurs could stop LeBron James in Game 2, as he led the Heat to a 98-96 win. http://t.co/em0rnYEcNc
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) June 9, 2014
Duncan finished with 18 points and 15 rebounds, tying him with Magic Johnson for the most double-doubles in NBA Playoff history. Parker tallied 21 points and seven assists; while Ginobli was a huge spark of the bench, scoring 19 points. Air Alamo’s own Ethan Cohen wrote an article addressing four things the Spurs needed to focus on to win Game 2:
1. Limit Turnovers San Antonio turned the ball over only 11 times, which lead to much less fast break opportunities for LeBron, Wade & Co. The Heat finished with only five points off of turnovers, after having 28 in Game 1. It is crucial for San Antonio to continue to take care of the ball at this rate for the rest of the series.
2. Push the Pace The Spurs mustered up a total of nine fast break points in Game 2. In the first half, the ball was moving well, and the Spurs were getting the shots they wanted; but when LeBron took over, the pace of the game slowed, and so did the Spurs offense. I think it’s safe to say that whichever team controls the pace of the game for the majority of the series will win it all. 3. Stop Ray Allen The Spurs were able to keep Allen at bay for the most part of Game 1, as he scored just nine points and seemed to be quiet most of the game. However, whatever Allen lacked in Game 2, Rashard Lewis was there to pick up the slack. Lewis connected on three three pointers and finished with 14 points. When LeBron is on his game like he was in Game 2, it is crucial to for the Spurs to make sure the role players, like Lewis or Allen, do not have big games as well.
— USA TODAY Sports NBA (@usatodaynba) June 9, 2014
4. Keep Dwyane Wade out of the Paint
Wade was three-for-five in the paint and finished the game with 14 points. The Spurs did a much better job handling Wade in Game 2, as he seemed frustrated early in the game and never seemed to look comfortable on the court. That being said, the Heat as a team scored 44 points in the paint, largely due to LeBron and Bosh. The Heat are at their best when James and Wade are able to penetrate the defense and score in the paint or dish it out to their perimeter shooters, and they were successful with both of these aspects tonight.
There is no reason to panic, San Antonio.
The Spurs played fairly well—but so did LeBron.
In conclusion, a performance like this should have been expected from King James, considering all that happened at the end of Game 1. Parker took a shot to the ribs from Mario Chalmers near the end of the game, which seemed to effect his play the rest of the way; hopefully he is okay, and we can steal a game or two in Miami.
Go Spurs Go!