Miami holds off Thunder, takes commanding 3-1 series lead

Rappler.com
Miami survives a monster game from Thunder's Westbrook to take a commanding 3-1 series lead in the NBA Finals

Miami Heat’s Mario Chalmers attempts a 3-point shot over Oklahoma City Thunder’s Russell Westbrook in Game 4 of the NBA Finals. Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images North America/AFP

MANILA, Philippines – Miami survives a monster game from Thunder’s Westbrook and takes a commanding 3-1 series lead after a 104-98 victory in Game 4.

Oklahoma City’s All-Star point guard Russell Westbrook was aggressive all through out the game leading his team with 43 points but he was called for a foul late in the game when they were down by just 3 points. His foul led to 2 made free throws by Mario Chalmers.

After being down by 2, 94-92, Miami’s Big 3, LeBron, Wade and Bosh score 7 straight points to put the Heat up by 5, 99-94 and they never trailed from there.

LeBron cramped up at the 5:15 mark of the 4th quarter but comes back in to hit a big 3-point basket. He exited the game with 55 seconds left.

Westbrook cut down Miami’s lead to a solitary point with a finger roll at the 10:25 minute mark of the 4th quarter but Chalmers quickly answered with 5 straight points.

Miami took the lead midway through the 3rd quarter thanks to their Big 3 and point guard Mario Chalmers who hit a 3-pointer to give the Heat a 4-point lead, 64-60. Heat outscored Thunder by 7 points in the 3rd quarter, 33-26, and takes a 79-75 lead to the 4th.

Oklahoma was able to hold on to a 3-point lead over the Heat at the half, 49-46. Thunder’s Westbrook led all scorers with 18 points. LeBron James finished the half with a near triple-double, 10 points, 8 assists, 6 rebounds. But the Heat quickly closed the gap to 33-26 on a 7-point blitz initiated by a 3-pointer from rookie point guard Norris Cole.

X-factor:
Heat’s starting point guard Mario Chalmers scored 19 points in the 2nd half to give Miami a boost. Chalmers is averaging only 5.67 points per game in the Finals but finished Game 4 with 25 including the last 5 points to seal the victory for the Heat.

Non-factor:
No other player in Thunder uniform scored in double figures aside from stars Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant who finished the game with 28 points.

– Rappler.com

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