Dwyane Wade is the latest player to be fined for flopping in this year’s NBA playoffs.
Wade was fined $5,000 after the league decided Monday that he exaggerated his reaction to a foul that was called on Spurs guard Manu Ginobili during the second quarter of Game 2 of the Finals on Sunday night.
It was the fifth such fine levied by league office in the playoffs.
“It was a swipe he took at the ball and he hit me,” Wade said before being fined Monday. “It was a late call by the ref, but he called it.”
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The league disagreed with Wade, who became the fourth player to be fined for flopping so far this postseason, joining Pacers guard Lance Stephenson (twice), Pacers center Roy Hibbert and Spurs forward Tiago Splitter.
The play came with 4:09 left in the second quarter when Ginobili took a big swipe at the ball just as Wade caught a pass. It was Ginobili’s third foul of the game and resulted in him going to the bench. Wade went on to make two free throws.
“I saw Manu coming out of the corner of my eye to try to steal it so my only thing was to make sure he didn’t,” Wade said. “He swiped and he wound up hitting me and the ref called a foul. We move on.”
Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said he wasn’t surprised by the rate of flopping calls has increased in the playoffs.
“There’s more attention to it,” Spoelstra said. “There are probably more people in the league office watching each possession.”
Guarding the arc
The Heat did not practice Monday, but players got together for a film session and underwent individual treatment as they prepared for Game 3.
Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh all agreed the Heat needs to find a way to limit the Spurs from shooting effectively from long-distance as they have the first two games of the series.
San Antonio shot 13 of 25 (52 percent) from three-point range in Game 1 and 12 of 26 (46.2 percent) in Game 2.
“The one-on-one defense can be a lot better,” Bosh said. “We need to contain the ball. When they’re penetrating and kicking the ball out to their shooters it makes it very difficult. They’re unselfish as well. They get your defense scrambling and you make one mistake and they capitalize.”
Spoelstra praised Bosh’s assist to Wade that put the Heat ahead by five points with 9.4 seconds left Sunday night, which effectively sealed Miami’s series-tying victory. The coach called it a “retro play” resembling the type that Bosh made frequently in his early days in Toronto.
“It was a play I normally don’t make so it felt good,” said Bosh, who hit the go-ahead three-pointer with 1:18 left in the fourth. “A catch and shoot is something I do often but I don’t usually have the chance to make a play like that for someone else.”
Bosh put a crossover dribble on Tim Duncan and drove to the basket, which forced Boris Diaw to help defend. He then found Wade with a simple bounce pass for the easy layup.
“In that situation, I was trying to read and react. I had to make a quick decision and I looked around and I was the first person to catch it and everybody else was very far away so I just made a quick move to the basket.”
After being held to nine points in each of the first three games of the Eastern Conference finals, Bosh is averaging 21.2 points per game over the Heat’s past five playoff games and has scored 18 in each of the first two games in the Finals.
“It’s just about being aggressive and taking good shots,” Bosh said. “I’ve been trying to do a better job getting to the rim and using my athleticism. It’s not about shooting less jumpers, but more about trying to use more opportunities to take it to the basket and catch the defense off guard.”