Heat vs. Spurs: LeBron James Must Be Aggressive from Tip for Miami to Win Game 5

Pete Schauer@@Pete_SchauerCorrespondent IJune 16, 2013

SAN ANTONIO, TX - JUNE 13:  LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat goes up for a shot against Kawhi Leonard #2 of the San Antonio Spurs in the first half during Game Four of the 2013 NBA Finals at the AT&T Center on June 13, 2013 in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Derick E. Hingle/Pool/Getty Images)
Pool/Getty Images

As we saw in Game 4, as the Big Three go, the Miami Heat go. 

Miami is tied 2-2 with the San Antonio Spurs in the NBA Finals as a crucial Game 5 takes place Sunday night in San Antonio—the last home game of the season for the Spurs.

The Heat are at their best when LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are contributing in all facets of the game, but the biggest key for the Heat is when James comes out active and aggressive.

James was passive in the first three games of the Finals—no performance worse than Game 3—but that all changed in Game 4, as ESPN Stats and Info shows.

James went for 33 points in Miami's 109-93 win in Game 4, shooting 15-for-25 from the field to go with 11 rebounds, four assists, two steals and two blocks.

More importantly for the Heat, James was assertive early, establishing himself in the post and taking the ball to the rim. As the flow of the game went on, James gained more confidence from his play inside and used it to his advantage on the outside, where he was knocking down mid-range and outside jumpers.

I mentioned James' dismal Game 3 output earlier, but his scoring totals were way down throughout the first three games of the Finals. Take a look:

As you can see, James only eclipsed the 20-point mark once in four Finals games in 2013, which is something we're not accustomed to seeing. In last year's Finals, the least amount of points James scored was 26, as he averaged 28.8 points per game en route to an NBA Finals MVP award.

James isn't the only key for Miami, though. To me, Wade is the ultimate key for the Heat.

If he continues to play the way he did in Game 4 (32 points, six rebounds, four assists and six steals), Miami is going to win back-to-back titles. 

But it all starts with James.

James must come out aggressive, attacking the basket and drawing fouls to get to the free-throw line. If he does that, the game will come to him, and he'll get more open looks from the outside, which is what we saw in Game 4.

If James is aggressive throughout and Wade stays active and productive, the Heat will be hanging another banner inside AmericanAirlines Arena.

 

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