MIAMI LeBron James may have been the best player in the Eastern Conference finals, but the biggest reason for their 101-88 Game 7 clinching win over the Boston Celtics?
His 19 points off the bench, maybe more than anything else done by the Heat, was what catapulted them into the NBA Finals for the second straight season.
"Game ball automatically goes to him," said LeBron James. "Without his production tonight, we don't win."
Among his 19 points was not one, not two, but three, 3-pointers.
Boston led most of the first quarter, but Bosh tied the game at 30 with a 3-pointer. With the score tied at 73 going into the fourth, Bosh hit a 3-pointer that put the Heat ahead, 76-75, less than a minute into the quarter. His last 3-pointer came at the 7:17 mark, and it was indeed the biggest one of the night.
It gave Miami an 86-82 lead, the first time either team led by more than one possession in the quarter. From there, the Heat continued to pull away for the win that advances them to the NBA Finals where they'll face the Oklahoma City Thunder.
To put Bosh's 3-ball of a game in perspective, consider this:
He only made 10 3's throughout the entire season, in 35 attempts.
James said he recognized how Kevin Garnett would slide over towards the paint to try and limit his driving ability to the lane.
"So when I seen that happen," James said, "I just kicked it to him, and he just lined it up and made it."
Celtics coach Doc Rivers said there was a reason behind Bosh getting so many good looks on those corner 3's.
"We needed Bosh's guy to help slow down LeBron, if you want to simplify it," Rivers said.
Despite his lack of 3's during the regular season, Bosh says it has been a shot that's been in his repertoire all season.
"I've been practicing those things all year," he said. "We kind of knew in big-game situations that they were going to be open, and I would be able to shoot it without hesitation."
And shoot it he did.
And with it, he shot the Celtics out of the playoffs for the second straight season.
"Listen, if that's what's going to beat you, if you had told me that before the game - not taking anything away from Bosh, he can shoot - but when their five (center) is beating you with the 3-point shot honestly, I think we would take it," Rivers said. "He was the X-factor. He gave them exactly what they needed."