Heat Vs. Blazers: LeBron James, Dwyane Wade Lead Blowout

The Miami Heat open the second half of the season at the Rose Garden in Portland, but they're without Chris Bosh, who will miss two games due to personal reasons.

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Heat Vs. Trail Blazers: LeBron James And Dwyane Wade Lead Miami By Portland, 107-93

Nights like Thursday are why people started calling the Miami Heat the Big Two and a Half last year. Playing without Chris Bosh, who missed the game and will miss the next one to be with family after his grandmother died, LeBron James and Dwyane Wade combined for 71 points to lead the Heat comfortably past the Portland Trail Blazers 107-93 at the Rose Garden.

The entire game was a jaw-dropping display of basketball talent and sheer athleticism, mostly from LeBron. From ridiculous alley-oops like this one and crazy fast-break dunks like this one, James showed again why he's not only the most athletic player in the league (the only reasonable argument is Blake Griffin) but, with a line of 33 points, 11 rebounds, six assists, five steals, one block, 13-22 shooting, including 2-2 from three-point range and 10-12 from the foul line, and zero turnovers, he's also far and away the best.

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Wade isn't too shabby himself, and he racked 33 points and 10 assists in his "complementary" role. This is now nine straight wins for the Heat, all of which have come by 12 or more points, six of which have come on the road. There haven't been many better stretches of basketball in history, and they are in a separate universe from every other team in the league this year, including the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Chicago Bulls, their presumptive challengers for the NBA title.

On the other side of the court, the Blazers simply didn't have the horses to run with the Heat on this night. Playing without Kurt Thomas, who is suffering from a concussion, and with very limited production from Marcus Camby, they had no interior presence to stop James and Wade from attacking at will. Jamal Crawford is starting at the point and he's been one of the most notorious chuckers in the league since he was a rookie. Raymond Felton was playing splendidly at the beginning of the season, but he's lost all of that magic and is a few steps away from being out of the rotation completely.

The Blazers fell to 18-18 in the loss and the Heat have tied the Thunder with the best record in the NBA at 28-7 with the win.

For more on these two teams, visit Heat blog Peninsula is Mightier and Blazers Edge.

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Heat Vs. Trail Blazers: Miami Continues To Be Terrifying, Leads Portland 87-69 After 3

It's impossible to watch the Miami Heat in the midst of their astounding winning streak without anything but awe and admiration. They haven't won any of their eight -- soon to be nine -- games by any less than 12 points, and Thursday night's game against the Portland Trail Blazers is looking like more of the same. The Heat lead after three quarters, 87-69.

LeBron James has 31 points, nine rebounds and six assists, Dwyane Wade has 28 points and eight assists, and the rest of the Heat have shot 50 percent from three-point range as a team. They lead by 18 points at halftime and have maintained that lead, but have done so in spectacular fashion, in particular with two displays of stunning elevation by LeBron, first on a breakaway dunk:

And on an alley-oop in which he jumped clear over Blazers center Joel Pryzbilla:

LaMarcus Aldridge is playing a fine game, with 18 points through three quarters, but at this point, there's really not much the Blazers can do. They're outclassed athletically and every turnover and missed shot is turning into points like the ones you see above.

For more on these two teams, visit Heat blog Peninsula Is Mightier and Blazers Edge.

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Heat Vs. Trail Blazers: LeBron James, Dwyane Wade Combine For 41 Points, Miami Leads Portland At Half

It appears we have reached a point in the development of the Miami Heat that nothing can stop the freight train that is the LeBron James-Dwyane Wade partnership other than themselves. The pair combined for 41 points, an insane alley-oop, and, along with the rest of the Heat, a 60-42 lead over the Portland Trail Blazers on the road.

Wade has scored 22 points, 12 of which have come in the second quarter, when the Heat extended an eight-point lead to 18. He also put on a display of post moves from which LeBron could take a lesson:

James, in case you were wondering, was no slouch himself, scoring 19 points with seven rebounds and four assists. James and Wade are a combined 16-for-24. James started the game at power forward while Chris Bosh is out and has been lethal from the four (helped partially by the fact that he's being guarded by Gerald Wallace, a traditional small forward).

LaMarcus Aldridge tried valiantly to keep the Blazers in the game with 12 points in the first quarter, but scored just two in the second as the Heat pulled further away. The Blazers have only made one free throw in two attempts, and Nicolas Batum is the only Blazer who has truly attacked the paint, and he's only done so, really, because he's easily dominating Shane Battier, who's a step slow.

For more on these two teams, visit Heat blog Peninsula is Mightier and Blazers Edge.

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VIDEO: Dwyane Wade And LeBron James Connect, Miami Heat Take First Quarter Lead

It appears as if LeBron James and Dwyane Wade still have the All-Star Game mentality, because they're still throwing up alley-oops as if the other team isn't playing much defense. Observe:

The Portland Trail Blazers led early, but James and Wade led a furious Miami Heat rally, and the Heat ended the quarter with a 32-24 lead. James scored 12 points with four rebounds and four assists in the period, and Wade added 10 of his own. James started the game as the power forward with Chris Bosh missing two games for personal reasons, and dominated Gerald Wallace, who tried to check him without very much success.

LaMarcus Aldridge dominated Joel Anthony on the other end, scoring 12 points of his own, but couldn't do it all on his own as the Blazers struggled to find points from the other four players on the floor.

For more on these two teams, visit Heat blog Peninsula Is Mightier and Blazers Edge.

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Chris Bosh Will Miss Miami Heat's Next 2 Games For Personal Reasons

Chris Bosh will miss Thursday and Friday's Heat games due to the death of his grandmother.

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Heat Vs. Blazers: A Well-Rested Big 3 Rolls Into Portland

The Big Three might have played in the All-Star Game, but they've had a full week off from competitive games. Meanwhile, the Blazers had to play in Denver last night.

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