The game was tied at 1 in the fourth inning when

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The game was tied at 1 in the fourth inning when

Postby ruogu1234 » December 3rd, 2019, 2:54 am

MIAMI - During the dog days of the regular season, the Miami Heat often spoke about the need to not take any shortcuts on the way to the playoffs. And thats true. That doesnt mean they necessarily enjoyed the 82-game run-up to the best time of year. "None of us," Heat forward LeBron James finally confessed, "are here for the regular season." When this core of Heat players was assembled, the only stated goal was winning NBA titles, which also explains why even getting through the first two rounds of these playoffs basically unscathed only merited a short celebration. Miami is back in the Eastern Conference finals for the fourth straight season, and will visit Indiana in Game 1 on Sunday afternoon. The Heat got there by ousting the Brooklyn Nets in five games, the end of that series Wednesday night being briefly accompanied by a few hoots and hollers in the immediate moments after the clinching 96-94 win was completed. Before long, order was restored to the Heat locker room. Two series wins are nice, but they know the road only gets tougher from here. "Like LeBron said, to be in this position four years in a row, this is the reason we came together four years ago," Heat guard Dwyane Wade said. "Weve got a lot more work to do but were a team that doesnt take it for granted. Were a team that worked very hard to get to this point, so were going to go to the next round, the Eastern Conference finals and continue to do what weve done, play this game as hard as we can and try to continue to move forward." Indiana ousted Washington on Thursday night. The Heat and Pacers split four meetings in the regular season. "We know what Indianas capable of," Heat forward Chris Bosh said. "Best defence in the league. Despite their struggles, we still see the same opponent in those guys as we did last year and throughout this year." The Heat are now 32-7 in first- and second-round games in the last four postseasons, that stretch coinciding with the start of the "Big 3" era featuring James, Wade and Bosh teaming up in Miami. That first year, even that star-studded trio wasnt enough. More pieces were added, like Shane Battier a year later and Ray Allen two years later, and theyve all paid dividends since. Allen kept coming up big at big times in the Brooklyn series, hitting clutch free throws to seal Game 4 and then knocking down a 3-pointer with 32 seconds left to put Miami ahead for good in Game 5. Never mind that Allen had missed 11 of his last 12 3-point tries in the series. Just like last year when he saved Miamis season with the legendary desperation 3-pointer in Game 6 of the NBA Finals against San Antonio, when the stakes were highest, Allen came through. "We did what we needed to do, when we had to do it," Allen said. "Total team effort." Miami had trailed for the entire second half of Game 5 against the Nets until that 3-pointer by Allen, a shot set up by Mario Chalmers seeing that Brooklyns Shaun Livingston was charging at him and somehow leaving the best long-range shooter in the history of the game wide open. That was the only break Miami needed. "The most important thing is to stay in the moment," Battier said. "And I dont there is anyone maybe in the history of the game who does it better than Ray Allen." Added Chalmers: "Thats a great option when you know you have the all-time greatest 3-point shooter to your left." A year ago, the Heat needed seven games to beat Indiana in the East finals, then seven more to top San Antonio for their second straight NBA title. Thursday was a rest day for Miami, maybe one of the last ones the Heat will truly have before the season ends. On Friday, the real work starts in earnest. "We still have some business to take care of," James said. "But its great to be able to put ourselves in position to get to where we want to go. We never shortcut the process. We understand that each and every game is going to be a challenge for us." Chicago Bulls Pro Shop .com) - They didnt meet in the regular season, so Sam Houston State might be saying it won the de facto title game between the two Southland Conference co-champions Saturday. Chicago Bulls Store . But last years runner-up Jarkko Nieminen crashed out despite winning the first set against Denis Istomin. Istomin fired 10 aces and won 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-2 to even his career record against Nieminen at 3-3. https://www.cheapbulls.com/ . Right-hander Todd Redmond took the loss. Jose Bautista hit his second home run of the spring. Here are a handful of tidbits from around camp: Hutchison impressive The Blue Jays are being cautious when talking about their young arms but internally, excitement is building over the way Drew Hutchison is looking and performing this spring. Bulls Jerseys 2020 . Canada will host Japan in a World Group first-round match in 2015. It will be a rematch of their first-round clash last year when Japan defeated Canada 4-1 to reach the World Group quarter-finals for the first time in its history. Stitched Bulls Jerseys .ca Fantasy Editor Scott Cullen, NFL Editor Ben Fisher, and Isaac Owusu discuss three hot fantasy football topics.ANAHEIM, Calif. - After a cross-country scramble that included the birth of his first child, a night in the hospital and some fast talking, just getting inside Angel Stadium was quite a relief for Kansas City closer Greg Holland.Holland capped off his wild adventure with a save Thursday night as the Royals held off the Los Angeles Angels 3-2 in 11 innings in their AL Division Series opener.Not bad, considering he got to the ballpark in the middle of the game.The guy that dropped me off did a great job getting me here, but he didnt really know where to go, and I didnt know where to go, either, Holland said before Game 2 on Friday night.So I kind of made a few security guards nervous running up to them with a pack over my shoulder with my ID in my hand saying, Im a player. Im a player. Dont tackle me to the ground kind of thing.The rush began after Holland helped the Royals beat Oakland in the wild-card game Tuesday night in Kansas City. He then chartered a flight to Asheville, North Carolina.Shortly before 9 p.m. Wednesday, wife Lacey delivered Nash Gregory Holland. The pitcher spent the night in the hospital a€” both his wife and son are doing well a€” and prepared to rejoin the Royals on the West Coast.Me and my wife kind of booked all that, so it was kind of hectic trying to do that while youre in the delivery room booking flights and stuff, he said. But we maade it work.ddddddddddddHolland said he got on a chartered plane around 4 p.m. Thursday and arrived at John Wayne Airport in Southern California about 7 p.m.The game was tied at 1 in the fourth inning when Hollands driver headed to the ballpark. Finding his way inside took a little longer.It was kind of hectic running through the parking lot. But they let me in, he said.It was kind of weird when a guys like, Youre a player? Thats not possible because the game is in the fifth inning. But I had to explain the details and actually got a congratulations and he jogged me right down the concourse and got me where I needed to go, Holland said.He got loose in the locker room and made it to the bullpen in the middle of the sixth inning. And that settled down Royals manager Ned Yost.I mean, I was locked into the game, but I was locked into where the heck he was, too, Yost said. OK, am I going to have Holly or am I not going to have Holly?He was supposed to be here at 3. Ended up, last I heard, 6. And the game started, and it was like 7. Is Holly here yet? he said.In the 11th, Yost called on Holland to protect a one-run lead. Holland struck out his first two batters and retired Josh Hamilton on a popup to end it.Physically, I was kind of worn out, he said. Im glad it turned out good and there wasnt a whole lot of turmoil in the bottom half of that inning. ' ' '
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