MIAMI - Chris Bosh is often the forgotten member of Miami's Big Three, but the Nets should have no problem remembering what he did Tuesday night.
Bosh was ineffective early, but he lifted his play in the second half and helped spark the Heat to a 107-86 rout of the Nets in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
Miami took control of the game with an 18-5 third-quarter run and opened a 70-54 lead. Bosh accounted for 12 points in that surge. He scored seven consecutive points and dished off two assists.
"This team needs me to play well," Bosh said. "I'm going to go out there, at least be aggressive and see what happens."
After starting 1-for-5, Bosh shot 4-for-6 in the second half and finished with 15 points and 11 rebounds. He scored 11 in the second half.
"CB started slow, but CB had a hell of a third quarter," Dwyane Wade said. "He came out aggressive and we looked for him."
But Bosh wasn't the only one to give the Nets trouble. The entire Heat team gave them plenty to think about.
Miami moved the ball, got wide-open looks and played with a heightened level of urgency. The Heat showed why it remains the clear favorite to represent the East in the NBA Finals for the fourth straight year.
"We're playing like a team that understands how good it can be," Wade said. "We're a professional team. We understand what we have to do and how to do it."
LeBron James played his usual brilliant all-around game. He shot 10-for-15, scored 22 points and set up his teammates. Ray Allen had 19 points off the bench and shot 4-for-7 from three-point range.
Much of the talk leading up to the game was about the Heat potentially being rusty after not playing for seven days. Miami swept the Bobcats in four games, finishing them off on April 28. But the Heat showed little rust. They ended up shooting 56.8 percent from the field.
After the Heat let the Nets cut an 11-point deficit to three at the half, Miami played the third quarter like a team that wanted to send a message.
The Heat shot 12-for-17 in the third and scored 33 points. Miami was up by 18 in that quarter and ran away with the game in the fourth.
"The most important thing was the rhythm that we were in," James said. "It seemed like we didn't take much time off at all in terms of our rhythm. To have eight days off and playing a game, I feared the rhythm. I don't have to fear it anymore after the way we performed. It's a good step in the direction we want to keep going in."