Heat glad to be up 2-0, but know they must play better

MIAMI — The Miami Heat built seven different double-digit leads during Game 2 of their Eastern Conference first-round series, and seven times the Charlotte Bobcats fought back to hang around.

The Heat eventually held on for a 101-97 victory on Wednesday night to go up 2-0 in the series. The Bobcats had a chance to tie the score on their final possession, which ended with Dwyane Wade’s steal of Chris Douglas-Roberts with 2.9 seconds on the clock.

"The playoffs are about being in those situations," said Chris Bosh, who had 20 points on 8-of-11 shooting. "No matter how we got there, no matter what happened, we had to get the stop. That’s what it’s about. We pulled out the win."

But…

"We gave them a bit of confidence — that’s the negative part," Bosh added. "But overall, we’ll take the win. We just have to make sure we play better."

Miami became the only team in this year’s NBA playoffs to begin a series by winning the first two games on its home court. Washington (at Chicago) and Portland (at Houston) took two road games.

The Heat, however, maintain an approach they had all season — it’s not about the opponent, it’s about us.

"We can play better basketball," said LeBron James, who scored 32 points. "We haven’t played our best basketball. We have throughout stretches but not consistently for 48 minutes. If we do that, we give ourselves a good chance to win Game 3, and we will learn from our mistakes (Wednesday)."

Miami prevailed in Game 2 despite committing 17 turnovers — that led to 16 Charlotte points — with Wade and James accounting for four each. The Bobcats had 15 turnovers, just three in the second half.

The league’s worst rebounding team managed just four offensive rebounds against the Bobcats, who collected 15.

"They have that DNA of just playing hard during every play," Bosh said. "We had some turnovers and that cost us every time. We have to do a better job taking care of the ball late down the stretch and not give them second and third chances."

Erik Spoelstra also credited Charlotte for fighting back in Game 2, but the Miami coach knew his team needed to improve in certain areas.

"It’s never going to be easy offensively against (Charlotte), where you can freely get the exact type of shots that you want. That’s a credit to them," Spoelstra said. "However, there were segments and pockets in the game where there was a lapse either of energy offensively or concentration and discipline defensively. Those moments were usually when we were up."

Spoelstra didn’t have to tell his players what they needed to do going forward.

"Obviously, we want to play better when we get to Charlotte," Wade said, "but I thought we did what we needed to do to close out the game.

"It’s the playoffs, teams are not going to give up. It isn’t like the regular season where you go up by 20 and a team packs it in. They’re going to keep coming at us and that’s good, it’s a great challenge for us."

You can follow Charlie McCarthy on Twitter @mccarthy_chas or email him at mac1763@bellsouth.net.