Wamp, wamp, wamp:
The Big 3? They’re No. 3 in the East at this point, after Derrick Rose scored 27 points, Deng capped an 18-point effort with two free throws on a hotly debated play with 15.9 seconds remaining, and the Bulls beat Miami 87-86 on Sunday to hand the Heat their fourth straight loss. “The Miami Heat are exactly what everyone wanted, losing games,” Wade said. “The world is better now because the Heat is losing.”
In the Heat locker room, some players shed frustrated tears.
“One of these days, we will break through,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said.
Carlos Boozer scored 12 and Joakim Noah added 11 for the Bulls, who moved a game ahead of Miami into outright possession of second place in the Eastern Conference. Chicago was down by 12 late in the first half, then became the fourth team since Feb. 24 to erase a double-digit deficit against the Heat.
“We have guys who can close,” Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said. Few would say that Miami doesn’t — but closing games has been, and continues to be, the biggest Heat challenge.
James had a chance to win it on a drive with 6 seconds left, missing a contested shot, and Wade’s desperation toss from the right baseline bounced away as time expired.
Those were the 12th and 13th consecutive shots that the Heat have missed with a chance to tie or lead a game in the final 10 seconds of regulation or overtime. James has missed four in this four-game losing streak alone.
“I told my team, I’m not going to continue to fail late in games,” James said. “I put a lot of blame on myself tonight. I told the guys that I just keep failing them late in games and I won’t continue to do that.” ames scored 26 points, Chris Bosh added 23 and Wade had 20 for the Heat, who put together a rally to take the lead in the final minute.
The Heat were down 82-76 with 3:30 left when Rose made a jumper over Miller, before Mario Chalmers led the comeback effort. He hit a 3-pointer to tie it with 1:05 left, then blew past a closeout for an easy layup from the left side that put the Heat ahead 86-84 with 25 seconds remaining.
With Chicago down by two, Deng made one free throw, missing the second. Noah got a hand on the ball, keeping James and Erick Dampier from grabbing it cleanly, and in the chase for the carom referee Tony Brothers called a foul on Miller for pushing Deng in the back.