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Andersen contributes to Heat's win, 2-0 lead

The SportsXchange

MIAMI -- A sea of fans in Miami Heat gear flocked to the team store as doors opened at AmericanAirlines Arena before Game 2 of the first-round Eastern Conference playoff series on Tuesday night.

One fan -- looking at the vast selection of apparrel yet not finding what he wanted -- didn't ask for a Dwyane Wade, LeBron James or Chris Bosh jersey. His request was for a white or red Chris Andersen replica.

Andersen's jersey might find its way in stock after he scored eight points off the Miami bench in the fourth quarter to keep Milwaukee at bay and boost the Heat to a 98-86 victory on Tuesday night in front of 20,097.

"I couldn't stop going to the basket," said Andersen, who finished with 10 points and six rebounds. "That's what I do and that's what I was brought here to do is go to the glass. I just go out there and provide energy."

The win gave the top-seeded Heat a 2-0 lead over the eighth-seeded Bucks in the best-of-seven series and raised their home record to 39-4 this season.

It's the 11th time in postseason franchise history the Heat has taken a 2-0 series lead. It has gone on to win each of those. Milwaukee has never won a playoff series when trailing two games to none.

"It's only going to get tougher as the playoffs go on, and like I said before, nobody wants to lose," Heat forward Chris Bosh said. "We knew they were going to give a better effort early."

Leading by a slim 68-65 margin to start the fourth quarter, the Heat opened with 12 straight points that included a three-point play by Anderson and the Miami defense forcing turnovers on consecutive possessions.

After each big play by Andersen, the sold-out crowd -- the 70th in a row for a Heat playoff game -- flapped its arms in a feather-like motion, mimicking Andersen, nicknamed the Birdman.

LeBron James, who scored 19 points, knocked down a bucket before Norris Cole made two free throws during the sequence. Andersen followed with a layup and Cole hit a shot from behind the arc as the Heat opened an 18-point lead, its largest of the game.

Dwyane Wade led the Heat with 21 points. Five Miami players scored in double figures. For James, it snapped his streak of 16 straight postseason games with 25-or-more points.

Twenty-five of Miami's 30 fourth-quarter points came from bench players.

Ersan Ilyasova paced the Bucks with a postseason career-high 21 points, with 14 coming in the first half.

In the third quarter, Bosh scored eight points as Miami built up a 68-60 advantage with 2:03 to go before the Bucks closed the quarter with a flurry. Bosh had just two points to that point.

Milwaukee's Larry Sanders, who missed four games with a back injury before scoring six points in Game 1, had eight in the third quarter and teammate Brandon Jennings scored seven, including a fast-break layup, to pull the Bucks to 68-65 at the end of the quarter.

"It's a series, it's about progress," said Sanders, who had 14 points and 16 rebounds. "We made progress this game, we just stayed in it 48 minutes. They were able to pick up the intensity and we weren't able to match it. It is a good lesson going to our next game."

In the first half, Milwaukee's starting backcourt was held to one point -- a Jennings free throw -- and no baskets until Monta Ellis' layup with 8:23 left in the third quarter.

Jennings and Ellis were 5 of 22 (.277) from the field, including 0 of 10 from 3-point range. After scoring 48 points in Game 1, they combined for 15.

"We tried to be aggressive," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "We tried to do the same thing that we did the other night. They had some of the same looks they missed. We tried to put bodies in front of them, contest them, make them pass."

With the score tied at 33 in the second quarter, Miami went on a 14-10 run to end the half despite going more than four minutes without a field goal.

James, Wade and Mario Chalmers combined to go 15 of 19 from the field in the first half while the rest of the team was 3 of 17.

Early in the first quarter, Milwaukee led by as many as five points as the teams combined to turn the ball over nine times. In one sequence, the Heat lost it on three consecutive possessions.

Ilyasova connected on four of his first six shots from the field and had 12 points in the first quarter for the Bucks.

Trailing 18-13, Miami outscored Milwaukee 12-5 in the final 4:15 of the quarter to take a 25-23 lead.

Marquis Daniels scored eight points off the bench for the Bucks in the second quarter after he finished Game 1 with two points.

"We felt pretty good about the position we were in at the beginning of the fourth quarter," Bucks coach Jim Boylan said. "But the Miami Heat came out and went on a 12-0 run and that changes the complexion of the game. We had to try and play catch-up, and that is very hard to do against a high-quality team like the Miami Heat."

NOTES: Heat guard Ray Allen is three 3-pointers from the career postseason record (320) held by Reggie Miller. ... Miami guard Mario Chalmers is one 3-pointer from the franchise record (80) set by Tin Hardaway. ... Bucks forward Drew Gooden, second on the team with 44 playoff appearances, was inactive. He has not played since April 6 against the Toronto Raptors. ... The series shifts to Milwaukee on Thursday night for Game 3 of the best-of-seven matchup.
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