The general consensus after the Heat lost Game 1 to the Spurs last night is that LeBron needs to shoot more.
He had a triple-double (18 points, 18 rebounds, 10 assists). But he only took 16 shots and Chris Bosh was the one who took the shot with the game on the line.
With Bosh and Dwyane Wade both slumping, it’s easy to say that LeBron needs to “take over.”
But the Heat won 66 games with LeBron playing the same unselfish brand of basketball he exhibited last night. That’s when Miami is at its best.
Here’s the money stat:
- When LeBron takes 16 or fewer shots, the Heat are 35-4.
- When LeBron takes 17 or more shots, the Heat are 38-16.
You can say that Lebron should go to the basket more, or try posting up on Kawhi Leonard (which worked in short spells last night). But the Heat aren’t going to win this series with LeBron going full Cleveland LeBron and taking 30 shots per game. They’re going to win by him doing exactly what he did all year, and his teammates stepping up to convert the open looks he gives them.LeBron isn’t like Kobe or Jordan — scorers who dominate by “taking over” and draining a succession of difficult shots and lay-ups.
When LeBron is dominating, he creates an open shot for either himself or a teammate on every possession. When he takes over, he’s the epitome of basketball efficiency — and that doesn’t necessarily mean he’s scoring 50, 40 or even 30 points.
When the Heat are going well, LeBron dismantles the defence with his penetration and passing, and opens things up for every one else.
That won’t happen if he tries to be the Jordan-like scorer that everyone suddenly wants him to be.
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