There is a widely known rule inside and outside of the Heat's locker room that people can no longer call Dwyane Wade by his old nickname, "Flash."
Forget all that. Mike Miller couldn't help himself.
Like an excited fan, Miller randomly screamed "Flash" in Wade's general direction throughout Wade's resurgent 32-point/six-steal effort on Thursday night in San Antonio. Wade's effort, buoyed by 33 points from LeBron James and 20 from Bosh, allowed the Heat to tie the NBA Finals at 2-2, ensuring at least one game back in Miami.
LeBron James joined in the "Flash" fan worship after the game. Wade joined Isiah Thomas as the only players to score at least 30 points in a Finals game while also recording six steals.
"He went back in his bag today. He was Flash tonight," James said. "We needed every bit of it.
"He's a competitor, and every time he's down, he responds. For him to go out there and play the way he played tonight, it was amazing. Thirty-two points, six boards, four assists, six steals — the six steals let me know he's very active both offensively and defensively."
Wade ditched the Flash moniker a few years back, saying it reminded him too much of his early years in the NBA. For one game of the NBA Finals, Flash was back. But will he stick around? After all, the Heat is only halfway to the championship in this series. Anything less than at least two more vintage performances by Wade might not be enough. You could feel momentum in the series shift on Thursday night, but another loss on Sunday would give the Spurs the advantage going into Game 6.
"I needed a game like this, but my teammates needed a game like this from me — needed me to be aggressive; needed me to play the way that I'm capable of," Wade said. " Most important, they needed the Big Three to play the way we're capable of. They depend on us a lot. We love our teammates, and we can't win without them. We're not going to win this series if myself, Chris and LeBron don't show up to play on a consistent basis.
"So tonight was kind of one of the best performances that we all had in the playoffs together at the same time. Just being aggressive from start to finish, and hopefully that's what we can see for the next three games."