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Heat begins road trip with inefficient effort in Boston


Losing to the Celtics at TD Garden is nothing new for the Heat — Miami has now lost its last 10 regular-season games in Boston — but let's consider the circumstances before filing this one away.

Sunday was Ray Allen's first game in Boston since signing with the Heat, so motivation shouldn't have been a problem. On top of that, the Celtics played without point guard Rajon Rondo, who learned he had a torn ACL before the game. And, let's not forget, the Celtics weren't playing very well entering the game. Boston's double overtime victory against the Heat was the Celtics first victory in seven games.

In other words, the Heat should be kicking itself after Sunday's loss.

Rebounding myths aside, the most consistent problem for the Heat in losses this season is turnover-to-assist ratio. It was horrendous on Sunday. The Heat had 21 turnovers and just 19 assists. Boston scored 19 points off of Heat giveaways. Dwyane Wade led the Heat with six turnovers. Chris Bosh had five. Mario Chalmers and LeBron James had three each.

Other observations:

—From the beginning of the game, it was obvious Chris Bosh was the Heat's most efficient offensive options. Bosh 5 of 6 from the field in the first quarter but attempted just six shots the rest of the game. Bosh was 2 of 3 from the field in the second half and both overtimes. Heat coach Erik Spoelstra called Sunday one of the Heat's most inefficient games of the season. Maybe the Heat should find some more shots for its most efficient shooter. Miami shot 40.6 percent from field (39 of 96). Bosh finished 7 of 12 from the field for 16 points. He also had 16 rebounds in perhaps the best game of his career against Kevin Garnett.

—Mario Chalmers was off his game. When Chalmers is playing well, the Heat is practically unbeatable. When Chalmers isn't playing well, the Heat has to compensate and that means more responsibilities for LeBron. Chalmers played three minutes in the fourth quarter and remained on the bench in both overtimes. He went scoreless (0 of 3 from the field) with three turnovers, two assists and four fouls in about 22 minutes.

—Rashard Lewis played more than nine minutes in the second quarter. Why, exactly? He didn't score and didn't contribute any rebounds or assists. What about Mike Miller? What about Chris Andersen? Is Andersen ever going to play meaningful minutes?

—Spoelstra went with the same five players—LeBron, Bosh, Wade, Shane Battier and Ray Allen—for the final 16 minutes of the game. LeBron played nearly 52 minutes. Bosh and Wade played more than 46 minutes. While Bosh attempted just three shots after the first half, James finished the game with 31 shot attempts. Wade missed his last seven shots of the game.

—Allen was 7 of 17 from the field in 38 minutes. It seemed like the Heat made Allen a priority. That's understandable, considering Allen's return to Boston, but the Allen forced some tough shots in overtime. He played the final 28 minutes of the game despite his limitations defensively. Allen was 2 of 8 from three-point range. Overall, the Heat was 5 of 23 (.217 percent) from three-point range.


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