It’s a series.
The Heat beat the Sixers, 113-103, to even it up in Game 2 Monday. They snapped the Sixers’ 17-game win streak and handed them their first loss at the Wells Fargo Center since March 13.
The Sixers climbed within two points in the fourth, but their 16-point deficit was too much to overcome. They will play Game 3 in Miami Thursday night (7 p.m./NBCSP).
• The three-point shooting that propelled the Sixers in Game 1 fell flat. After going 18 for 28 on Saturday, they shot just 7 for 36. Marco Belinelli (2 of 8), Robert Covington (1 of 9), JJ Redick (1 of 7) and Dario Saric (3 of 10) all struggled from long range.
• The Sixers started Ersan Ilyasova (14 points, 11 boards) at center to create the same matchup problems that helped them come back in the third quarter of Game 1. Unlike Saturday when the Heat played Hassan Whiteside (four points, five rebounds) for only four minutes in the entire second half, the center played over eight minutes in the first quarter alone. The Heat had two days to plan for adjustments in case the Sixers went with that lineup.
• The second quarter was rough for the Sixers. They scored 13 points in the entire quarter. Only Ben Simmons, Redick and Saric netted baskets. Meanwhile, Dwyane Wade scored 15 points in that period himself (see more below). The Sixers made just four buckets, shot 19 percent from the field and 1 for 10 from three. The Heat out-rebounded the Sixers, 18-7, to take away second-chance point opportunities.
• Wade always is capable of a vintage Wade game. It was unlikely the championship winner would have another quiet night. Wade scored a game-high 28 points (11 for 17 from the field) (see story). He's had a knack for turning it on against the Sixers. He previously dropped 15 in the fourth quarter in February. Starters Goran Dragic and James Johnson scored 20 points and 18 points, respectively.
• Saric amped up his game in the fourth. He scored 10 of his 23 points in the quarter to spark a Sixers’ comeback attempt. Simmons led the Sixers with 24 points, nine rebounds and eight assists.
• Markelle Fultz played less than five minutes. He went scoreless (0 for 3 from the field) and without a rebound or assist. When Simmons picked up his fourth foul in the third quarter, T.J. McConnell subbed in and Fultz did not play in the second half. McConnell drew a foul on a put-back attempt with 0.4 seconds left in the third quarter and the crowd chanted “T-J” when he went to the line.
• Keep an eye on Justise Winslow and Simmons in this series. Things got chippy between them in the first half. Any matchup against the Heat is going to be physical.
• The Sixers held a moment of silence in remembrance of Hall of Famer Hal Greer, who died Saturday.
The Sixers are honoring Hal Greer with this patch for the remainder of the postseason. pic.twitter.com/ijuH6bcKjp— Jessica Camerato (@JCameratoNBCS) April 16, 2018