Heat notebook

Chris Bosh’s performance bolstering Miami Heat’s offense

 

jgoodman@MiamiHerald.com

Chiefly among the reasons why the Heat leads the NBA in both points per game (111.8) and field-goal percentage (.520) is the red-hot shooting touch of Heat center Chris Bosh.

Bosh currently leads the entire league in field-goal percentage (.630) among players with at least 15.0 shot attempts per game. Kobe Bryant is second with a field-goal percentage of .620 on 16.8 attempts per game. Bosh is averaging 22.3 points per game, which is second on the team behind only LeBron James (23.0 ppg).

“Chris has been off to a great start, and he’s getting a lot of opportunities because of that ball movement and because at the end of actions the ball is finding him right at his sweet spot,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said.

The Heat’s ball movement has been crisp to begin the season and Bosh isn’t the only player with an abnormally high field-goal percentage. James is among the league leaders as well, shooing 54.5 percent overall and from three-point range.

Against the Suns on Sunday night, the Heat had 47 field goals on 33 assists. It was the highest assist total for the Heat in the Big 3 Era. The Heat was averaging 121 points in victories entering Wednesday’s game against the Nets.

“When the ball moves freely and you obey the No. 1 overall truth of basketball — if someone’s open pass it to them — the game becomes … easier,” Spoelstra said.

The beauty of the Heat’s league-leading offense, said Spoelstra, is that a different player could lead the team in scoring on any given night. In other words, whoever is open.

“We’ve challenged our guys to be efficient,” Spoelstra said. “There’s really no need with this group to force contested twos, long twos, contested shots — not when we have valid options somewhere else.”

Spoelstra stressed that the most important thing about Bosh’s blazing start to the season is his efficiency.

“That could stay the same all season long,” Spoelstra said. “Could he continue to average over 20? No one could know. And I don’t want anyone to try to predetermine that. The ball and the defense will determine that.”

JAY-Z ABSENT

What does Dwyane Wade most remember about his meeting with Nets officials in the summer of 2010? That Jay-Z wasn’t present for the meeting.

“Jay-Z wasn’t there,” Wade said jokingly after Wednesday’s shoot around. “He was there for LeBron.”

The Heat, of course, won the free-agent wars that summer, landing Wade, James and Bosh, but Brooklyn hasn’t done too badly since then. The Nets managed to keep Deron Williams in New Jersey with the promise of a new arena in Brooklyn, and this summer the Nets landed Joe Johnson from the Hawks.

“They’ve done a good job of what they said they were going to do,” Wade said. “Their whole goal was to be a team, in a sense, to be reckoned with by the time they got to Brooklyn. And they were able to build that.”

Wade never seriously considered signing with the Nets, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t come away from meeting three summers ago impressed by the team’s vision. He knew the Nets would build quickly.

“They had a very great presentation when I was in the meeting with them,” Wade said. “It’s very exciting to think about Brooklyn and think about being the first. I knew what they were embarking on was going to be exciting but at the time that was two years away. We were at the point where we wanted to do it now.”

PRESIDENTIAL?

If you took a league-wide poll of players most expected to enter politics after retirement, chances are Shane Battier would top the list. Battier has a presidential smile, an easy laugh, conversational grace and a high-crust education — basically everything you need for election to a high office.

Naturally, sports reporters gravitated to Battier the morning after Tuesday’s election for a dose of his oratorical prowess on the importance of the democratic process.

“It’s the greatest country in the world,” Battier said. “You see unrest in the Middle East and people who don’t have that right and the ability to choose their elected officials, and it’s an amazing part of our country.”

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