Heat 100, Knicks 67By The Sports Xchange | The SportsXchange – Sat, Apr 28, 2012 6:30 PM EDT
MIAMI -- The New York Knicks entered the playoffs hot; the Miami Heat didn't. Saturday, LeBron James set the record straight. With the Heat forward scoring 32 points and spearheading a 24-2 run to close the second period, the Heat jumped to a 1-0 lead in this best-of-seven opening-round playoff series with a 100-67 victory at American Airlines Arena. Not even needed in the fourth quarter, James shot 10 of 14 on an afternoon Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony was limited to 3-of-15 shooting for 11 points. Anthony's shooting might not have been the most crushing aspect for the Knicks, who lost starting shooting guard Iman Shumpert in the third quarter with what appeared to be a serious knee injury. Against that backdrop, with only nine points from forward Amare Stoudemire and none from center Tyson Chandler, the Knicks face a quick turnaround, with Game 2 scheduled for 7 p.m. Monday on the Heat's court. James was supported by 19 points from guard Dwyane Wade. It went from bad to worse for the Knicks when the left knee of Shumpert gave out while dribbling in the third quarter against Heat guard Mario Chalmers. After second minutes writhing in pain on the court, he was carried into the Knicks' locker room. With James taking charge, the Heat blew it open at the close of the second period to take a 54-31 halftime lead. The Heat seized control after Chandler was called for a flagrant foul late in the second period, for a hard pick and forearm thrust against James at midcourt. That led to a five-point Heat possession. "Tyson got me pretty good," James said during his televised halftime interview. "Got a little whiplash in my neck, but I'm OK. I mean, it's playoff basketball." After scoring 12 in the opening period, James was actually more dynamic with the 11 he delivered in the second period. While James was closing the first half by making his final four shots, the most prolific element of the Heat's first half was the shutdown defense against Anthony, whose lone basket was a 19-foot jumper with 2:07 to play in the second period. He had missed his first seven shots and closed the first half 1 of 9. Nearly as problematic for the Knicks was their early foul trouble, with Chandler closing the first half with four fouls after his flagrant and Stoudemire, Baron Davis and J.R. Smith with three apiece. Two Heat players returning from injuries seemed to be back on their games. Power forward Chris Bosh, out two weeks with a sore right hamstring, had nine points and six rebounds. Wade, out a week with a dislocated left index finger, shot 8 of 13. The 0-for-7 first quarter from Anthony was first time he has taken more than four shots with the Knicks in an opening period and not converted at least one. NOTES: Chandler arrived late to the arena due to stomach flu but was in the starting lineup. Coach Mike Woodson said he otherwise would have moved Stoudemire up to center, Anthony up to power forward and inserted Landry Fields into the starting lineup. New York was without reserve point guard Toney Douglas (flu). . . . James trimmed off much of his regular-season beard and also bypassed his traditional pregame chalk toss, walking deliberately to the center circle for the opening jump. . . . Stoudemire and Heat forward Udonis Haslem were called for technical fouls for the first-quarter words the two shared. . . . A first-quarter basket by Knicks forward Jared Jeffries was nullified by replay review as coming after the expiration of the shot clock.
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