(MIAMI) — No LeBron James? No problem. Dwayne Wade scored 23 points and grabbed 10 rebounds as the Miami Heat torched the Chicago Bulls 93-79 on Sunday — without four-time MVP James in the lineup.
James sat for just the second time this season after he suffered a broken nose in a win over the Oklahoma City Thunder last week. He watched from the bench as his teammates got the job done.
“We were missing a pretty big man,” Wade said. “There’s nothing we can do to replace the best player in the world, but we just had to go out there and play team basketball on both ends of the floor.”
Chris Bosh added 28 points and 10 rebounds for the Heat. Former No. 1 pick Greg Oden started in place of James. It was his first NBA start since December 2009, helping the Heat (40-14) pull away in the second half.
“You don’t want to see guys out,” said coach Erik Spoelstra, who earned his 300th career victory. “But when guys are out, I’m always curious to see how you respond as a team. We’ve have several of these games that could have been excuse games, but guys have stepped up.”
Joakim Noah led the Bulls (29-26) with 20 points and 15 rebounds. They had their five-game winning streak snapped at the hands of the two-time defending champs.
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Stephan Rockefeller, EastIdahoNews.com