Victor Oladipo played Jimmy Butler and with 23 points, led the win by 97-94 of the Miami Heat against the Atlanta Hawks with which Erik Spoelstra’s team won the series 4-1 and advanced to the second round of the NBA playoffs.
Not even the casualties of Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry stopped some Heat They will meet in the Eastern Conference semifinals with the winner of the series between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Toronto Raptors, with the former ahead 3-2.
Oladipo had his best night in recent yearsin which he was weighed down by injuries, and led the Heat with 23 points, one rebound, three assists and three steals.
He was supported by a dominant Bam Adebayo in the paint, who contributed 20 points, eleven rebounds, four assists and a shot, in a new display of defensive power for Miami.
Once again, the star of the Hawks, Trae Young, was annulled. He barely scored eleven points, shooting two of twelve and zero of five on three-pointers. Two days ago he had scored only nine and, in the first game, he was left with only eight.
Atlanta missed the 3-pointer to force overtime
It was De’Andre Hunter’s credit if the Hawks came with options to tie until the last play, when Miami’s defense prevented them from attempting the 3-pointer that would force overtime.
Hunter scored 35 points, with 11 rebounds, two assists and three steals, while Danilo Gallinari contributed twelve.
Miami’s 17-0 run in the second quarter
The match followed a script similar to Game 3 in its opening phase, with the Hawks getting off to a good start and melting away in the final minutes of the second period.
If two days ago Miami achieved a resounding 26-4 run to put their victory on track, this Tuesday they sealed a 17-0 run in the last four minutes that allowed them to go from 37-40 to 54-40.
The Hawks had not managed to get up from that quarter and succumbed to the monumental performance of Jimmy Butler, but this Tuesday, with the leader of the Heat on the bench, they managed to stay in the fight.
With a great Hunter, the Hawks started 6-0 in the third quarter, but Oladipo, from the perimeter, and Bam Adebayo, with eight points, were responsible for keeping the margin at twelve points to enter the fourth period.
The pride and desperation of the Atlanta team emerged in the final twelve minutes, when at Hunter’s pace they managed to completely reopen their options to prolong this series.
Although Oladipo continued to guide his team with wonderful plays, Hunter chained two consecutive 3-pointers that brought the Hawks closer to two points at 95-93.
Miami’s defense was key
A kill by Adebayo increased Miami’s margin by four points (97-93) with 59 seconds to play and Trae Young, on the other side of the track, certified his tremendous trouble by not going more than one of two in free practice (97- 94).
Max Strus had the ball to finish off, but the triple attempt failed and the Hawks were able to play the last action with options to tie and force extra time.
However, Miami’s defense closed flawlessly and the Hawks needed two timeouts just to get the ball back in play.
Finally, the person in charge of launching the last shot was Gallinari, who, however, found the Heat’s wall and ended up losing the ball.
It was a new victory for Miami, which sealed its ticket to the Eastern Conference semifinals, demonstrating once again its solidity and mental strength.