In a parallel universe somewhere, the Miami Heat rolled to a convincing win in their first non-nationally televised game of the season. In our universe, this game never happened because of the NBA lockout. The parallel universe sounds more fun, so let's discuss five topics from this game based on that.
The bench has some growing up to do: The game really got out of hand in the second quarter when Wizards trotted out Rashard Lewis with Shelvin Mack, Jordan Crawford, Jan Vesely and Kevin Seraphin. There were a lot of shell-shocked faces on the court near the end of that 18-0 run. When Crawford is on, a unit like that can hold the fort for a few minutes, but when he can't get open looks, these types of runs will happen.
Wall vs. Wade? Interesting call by Flip Saunders to have John Wall cover Dwyane Wade on defense for the majority of the first quarter. Wall came through with a nice block as well as a steal, but looked a little more hesitant than normal on offense. You could tell Wall was making a concentrated effort to slow him down, but it came at the expense of exposing Miami's weakness at the point guard position.
Encouraging garbage time returns from Jan Vesely: Vesely's 6 point, 6 rebound, 3 block performance in the fourth quarter came completely against Miami's second unit, but it was encouraging to see him recover after that disastrous 2nd quarter that made this one a snoozer early.
Incomplete grade on our defensive stopper: Chris Singleton came off the bench to try and guard LeBron in the 3rd quarter, but it's hard to read too much into his performance. The Heat were already in cruise control at that point. Offensively, it was nice to see him connect on two three-pointers from the corner late in the game. Sure, Miami's defense was a little lax at that point, but give him credit for getting in spots where he needs to be effective. If he can develop into that niche, it becomes that much easier to justify playing time.
Where was that in 2009? Why couldn't Mike Miller go 6 for 6 from downtown when he was a Wizard?